More Bedtime Conversations with Austin

"Daddy will you come and lay by me for a while?"
"Sure, since you've been so cooperative for bedtime I'll lay by you for a few more minutes."
"No Daddy, not for a few minutes. I want you to lay by me for a while."
"Daddy, do you know what a while means?"
"What does a while mean?"
"There are lots of wild animals, like polar bears and lions and aardvarks. They're wild. But that's not what a while means. Do you know what a while means?"
"What does a while mean?"
"It's something that takes time, like sometimes church takes a while, and sometimes I play in the yard for a while, and sometimes you lay by me for a while."

"Daddy, what were you like when you were little, like when you were one years old?"
"Well, when I was little I was a lot like you."
"Really? Did you have yellow hair like me?"
"Yep, just like you."
"Did you have yellow skin like me?"
"Did you have Mickey Mouse socks like me?"
"You know, I don't remember if I had Mickey Mouse socks."
(Austin tapping Daddy on the head) "Remember brain, remember brain, remember brain..."
"Actually, I think I do remember, and I don't think I had any Mickey Mouse socks like you when I was little."
"Well, I guess you weren't that much like me after all."


Ruthie's Secret Night Life

I could also title this post "The Best Present Ever." A little over a month ago, Anthony bought me the best pregnancy-survival gift... Star Trek! He bought the complete set of Voyager and we have both been enjoying it tons (we already own and have watched Next Generation). We've settled in to a nice little night-time routine of putting the kids to bed, cleaning up for 45 minutes or so, watching an episode of Voyager and then going to bed nice and early at 10pm. It's been great for my pregnancy because 1) it gives me something to look forward to at the end of every day and 2) it gives me a great wind-down routine and early bedtime that both help me stay ahead of the sleep game. We've got about 140 episodes left and 135 days of pregnancy to go. It looks likely that this will be the routine for next 5 months.

As for Ruthie's part in all this... As mentioned in a previous post, she still takes a good afternoon nap most days, but is then up until 10pm. About a week in to our new routine she wandered downstairs all quiet and shy, crawled in to Anthony's lap and watched a Voyager episode with us, then happily went right to bed afterwards. She was so darn cute. And what Trekkie parent can resist sharing Star Trek with their kid? Ruthie's bedtime routine is now as follows. She gets ready for bed at 7:30 with Austin, then is required to stay quietly in her room for an hour, then we go get her so she can watch Voyager with us. It's a crack up to walk in to her room and have her jump off her bed asking, "IS IT TIME FOR VOYAGER?" We do have to be selective about which episodes she watches - most episodes are really just standing around talking, but some are scary, intense or show gross looking aliens. We have to read ahead to know which episodes to save for the nights when she falls asleep early (or violates the "stay in your room till we come get you" rule).

Austin doesn't know about Ruthie's nightly privileges and I've contemplated feeling guilty about it, but then I realized that, being the oldest, he's had lots of special Mom & Dad time when Ruthie wasn't here or was still a baby. Plus he's completely zonked out by 9pm every night. Someday, though, I intend to get Austin hooked in to the Star Trek world too.


Boy or Girl?

Austin has been pulling for a boy since the day we announced the pregnancy. (That's him and me and Baby Buzz in the picture). Ruthie has been waffling back and forth, but mostly requesting a girl.

Yesterday we went as a family to see the big ultrasound. The baby had it's legs crossed at first, so we had to wait while the nurse checked on the baby's heart and head and stomach and bones. I am pleased to announce that we have one healthy little baby growing here! Then finally we found out...

It's a GIRL!!!
I am thrilled! I was hoping for a girl, though I'd gotten so used to calling it a boy that I still caught myself saying "he" yesterday and having to correct it. I'm excited that I'll have two daughters to play with and that my girls will have sisters. Austin's reaction to the news was a disappointed, "Oh, I was wrong." After saying that about 3 times, he was over it and announced, "I thought the pattern was boy, girl, boy, girl. Now I know it's boy, girl, girl, boy!" Now we just have to convince Austin to call the baby "Baby Sister" instead of "Baby Buzz". That may take some doing.

This is Austin's picture of me pushing the baby in a stroller. I love that the baby is so real to him that she's making it into his art! The kids ask me several times a week when the baby is going to "hatch" out of my tummy. It seems like a long way to go still, but 12 weeks ago I thought 20 weeks was an eternity away. Just 20 more to go.


Ruthie is 2...ish!

I have terribly neglected this post! Ruthie is almost 2 1/2 and I haven't yet written about her 2-year-old antics. This little gal is so full of personality there's almost too much to say. Maybe that's why I haven't tried to write it all down yet!

So Ruthie turned 2 when we were at Disneyland. The big milestone of her birthday was graduating to a big girl bed. This actually happened at Disneyland thanks to grandma. Ruthie and her were sharing a room and Ruthie was supposed to be in her pack-n-play. But grandma couldn't handle the cries, so Ruthie slept in bed with her all week. Ruthie did so well with it that when we got home we converted her crib into a bed. She does a pretty decent job of staying in her room, but with her new freedom to move she will often stay up late (10pm) "reading" books to herself. And she insists of falling asleep with the lights on.

Here are a couple of cute movie clips from the big birthday day.

As for her little personality.... here goes:
  • She's a great talker. She is so good at communicating what she wants, how she feels, etc. She's also a skilled little parrot, which gives the illusion that she understands a lot, when in reality she's just repeating things. Being 2 she also comes up with a lot of humorous insights on the world that continuously entertain us.
  • She asks for naps. You heard me right. She knows when nap time is (after lunch) and has often sleepily said, "Can I take a nap now?" Now that she's actually approaching 2 1/2 she rarely asks for naps anymore and we are occasionally foregoing naps these days. She'll still takes them if I put her down, but then she's usually up until 10pm on those days. Oh well - what's a tired pregnant mommy to do? She usually gets a nap.
  • Now that she's in a big girl bed, for nap time and bed time she insists on having daddy or (more often) mommy lay down by her. Since she completely resisted cuddles for the first 2 years of her life I am only all too happy to indulge her now!
  • She wakes up happy in the morning and greets us with big hugs. On mornings when Anthony gets her she sometimes shrieks "Daddy! You're home!"
  • She's good at singing songs. I found it funny when I read an article that said by age 2 many kids can say 2 to 3 word sentences. And little Ruthie had the words to "I am a Child of God" completely memorized! Her repertoire continues to expand. Current song favorites are - "I Will" (aka "The Mommy and Daddy Song"), "ABC's", "Twinkle Twinkle", "Happy Monkey Song", and others.

  • She mostly calls Austin "broder" and despite the daily sibling fights, they are definitely best friends. Their standard morning game is "doggie and owner" wherein doggie Austin wakes up owner Ruthie and then they play in her room till mom or dad wake up. She also gets into his role playing games with him. She plays Martin to Austin's Chris Kratt, she plays Robin to Austin's Batman, she plays Gnocchi to Austin's Curious George. With all that practice, she's pretty socially advanced and actually plays better with Austin's 4-year-old girl peers than she does with her 2-year-old peers.
  • About a month ago Ruthie learned how to use a computer mouse and can now play PBS Kids games independently. These days it is common to see Austin playing "Wild Kratts" on his computer while Ruthie plays "Curious George" on my computer while I'm making dinner.
  • She doesn't like diaper changes and often cries or kicks trying to get out of them (grrr).
  • She had a bald spot on the top of her head for the past 6 months. We think it was probably caused by Austin pulling her hair out. About a month ago it finally grew in!
  • She adores her Opa even though she's only seen him 3 times.
  • Her favorite color is usually purple (though she still gets her colors mixed up).
  • She loves going to nursery and is very cooperative when we tell her it's time for church.
  • She eats all day. Every 30 minutes or so she raids the pantry for a "nack" - nutrigrain bars, crackers, protein bars, apples, fruit snacks.
  • She makes the funniest faces which elicit many cries of "you're so cute!" from her parents.
  • She's so polite. She's quick to offer words like, "Thank you for my cereal", or "I sorry I screamed", or if you compliment her clothes she'll say, "You're Welcome."
  • When she's hurt or upset her comfort is to hold her blanket, suck her thumb and watch TV.
This girl is soooo adorable. If I could clone her I'm sure I could make millions selling copies of my cute little girl. I love my Ruthie.