Thursday, June 28, 2012

Two cuties

Reading girl!

I am so excited that Mariana is reading on her own! Since school has been finished I have noticed her trying to read little things on her own here and there, but when I have tried to encourage her to read a book she would shy away. She has always been a little intimidated by reading. So I left her alone, and this week she has been picking up books on her own (helps that we picked up a few of her favs at the library!) and reading them. She even read one out loud to Gloria to help her calm down after getting hurt! Yay, Mariana!!!

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Sweet buddies

Last night, Stephen adopted Allia as his caretaker. It was so sweet. We took advantage of the kids eat free night at Chick Fil A, and there were some boys being mean to him in the play area. Just as I was going in to supervise, I saw him latch onto Allia. She played with and protected him the whole rest of the visit. When it was time to go, he insisted that Allia buckle him into the car and unbuckle him when we got home. He even picked her to bathe and dress him for bed! It was just so cute!

She jumps!

We brought out the ducky jumper a few weeks ago, and I finally remembered to take some pictures!

Sunday, June 24, 2012

Reading together

I just love how all the children gather to read a book!

Saturday, June 23, 2012

First Bites!

Anastasia has been making chewing motions whenever she is in our lap while we eat. So we decided she must be ready for solid food. This morning she had her first tastes of baby oatmeal, and she did great! She opened her mouth for the spoon and made chewing motions once it was in there. Good girl!

Swim videos

I actually remembered to video the girls doing some tricks the other day at the pool!

Mariana and Allia


Friday, June 22, 2012

Dance Camp Finale

The girls danced beautifully and had so much fun. What a great week!

Big girls' ballet

Big girls' lyrical

Big girls' jazz

Big girls' hip hop

Gloria's Ballet

Gloria's Hip hop

Gloria's Lyrical

Gloria's Jazz (if you listen carefully you can hear little giggles from Anastasia in my lap, mostly when they are jumping. She really liked that!)

And this is what my littlest ballerina thought of dance camp...I love how she still has the wand in her hand!

Monday, June 18, 2012

Dance Camp!

After a nice weekend of celebrating our wonderful fathers, the girls are off to a week of dance camp! Here they are before and after their first day and Gloria in her class. One of their little friends is in Gloria's class, so she is in the middle and last photo too. :)

Saturday, June 16, 2012

Friday, June 15, 2012

Last Day of Swim Lessons!

The girls all did great this year, although Gloria was the only one to move up to the next level. She is still in the little kids "frog" class but moved up to level 3. They cannot move on from frogs until they are 6 anyway! Mariana will be in Minnows 2 again and Allia in Crocodiles. They were a little disappointed, especially Allia, but they worked hard and swam great, so I am very proud of them!

spectators having some laughs

Love that froggy slide

This girl is always smiling in the water!

Braving the lillypads


Big slide!

A ride on the snake

Mariana's turn on the lillypads!

And now Allia

Another slide
We had a great 2 weeks, and they will be off to dance camp next week, so our summer is starting out busy but will calm down a bit soon!

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Swim videos

Today was the day at swim lessons that they do most of the testing to see if the children are ready to move to the next level. So I took the opportunity to get some videos of the girls swimming.

I guess they take more care in letting you move up in the higher levels. Allia had 6 (no kidding!) people with clipboards watching her swim and writing down things! I would have felt like a lab rat, but she said it didn't bother her at all!
Allia swimming...



Monday, June 11, 2012

Sweet sisters

Gloria even picked her outfit!

Saturday, June 9, 2012

Pretty baby

In a desperate moment I grabbed this dress for Anastasia that hadn't been washed yet (Manah bought it for her) and is a little big, but she looked so pretty I just had to take some photos!

Little artist

The girls were at a friend's house baking cookies, and Anastasia was actually napping in her swing, so Stephen and I had some nice Mommy and me time. He chose to paint, and he did an awesome job. He even painted a tree that resembled a tree! Cute boy. We also played outside and played cars a bit. I am so thankful for some time with my growing boy!


Friday, June 8, 2012

More swim lessons

Gloria started out a little timid and had both her teachers holding her in the water thinking she couldn't swim by herself. We talked to her and pepped her up, so on Thursday she told them to let her try by herself. It was great! One teacher even exclaimed after class, "That little girl can swim by herself!" I was so proud of her for being brave enough to decline help. She actually was a little scared because they swim in the 4' where she cannot touch. Today she must have said "I can do it by myself" about 20 times! But she really did...even some of the back strokes which are the hardest at her age since they tend to sink. Yay Gloria!!!

Smiles after her turn on the froggy slide

Allia doing the crawl all the way across the deep end. I am not sure exactly how far it is, but it was a looong way!

Putting on a big flipper to practice the dolphin kick
Ready for a dive

Mariana has so much fun but often talks so much to her little friend in the class that she doesn't hear the teacher!

Mariana is doing great developing her strokes a little more, and of course she loves jumping in!

Thursday, June 7, 2012

Reading with Manah

Manah was so sweet to come help with the carting to and from swim lessons while keeping baby happy, without even being asked! We are very blessed. The children have enjoyed having her here, and it has even meant a few extra trips to the pool this week!

Here she is reading to Gloria and Anastasia while Anastasia tries to eat the book!

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Swim time!

The girls started swim lessons today, and they are loving it already! All my girls are such great swimmers. I am really proud of them. My boy, however, will not set foot in the water this year! So he comes and plays on the side when we go to the pool while the big girls all swim.

Shots from the first day...

I ended up enrolling Gloria in another class because the big girls have 45 minute lessons, but hers are only 25 minutes. She just enjoys it so much and kept insisting that she should get to swim longer like them. So they go 9-9:45, and she now goes 9-9:25, then 9:30-9:55.

Sunday, June 3, 2012

5 Months Old!

Anastasia is five months old today. Wow!

Sweet girl, you are growing so fast, and we so enjoy watching you blossom! You are a very sweet baby. You have become much more vocal this month and more smiley too. You can roll over but much prefer to play on your back just like your sisters...I wouldn't be surprised if you skip crawling just like they did! You are reaching for toys a lot and like to chew on anything and everything. Maybe we will see some teeth soon?

As for sleep, you are gradually doing better. I have been letting you cry yourself back to sleep when you wake up right after I get you to bed, which is now usually only two nights a week. You have been doing well with that, and this is a huge relief to me. :) You are down to 4 naps a day (was 5) ranging from 30 minutes to 2 hours just depending. You are now taking one, sometimes two of your naps in the swing, which is definitely an improvement. But that still means most days two of your naps are still on me. :) You nurse around 7:30pm, and I usually lay you down for bed between 8 and 8:30 after which you sleep most nights until around 4 or 5. Occasionally you wake up earlier but don't seem to be hungry so I have started letting you cry yourself back to sleep when you do, and most nights you do great.

We are just so thankful for our baby girl! What a blessing you are!

Saturday, June 2, 2012

Treasure Hunt

Austin and the girls were discussing treasure hunts this week, and Austin decided to pull out this treasure map he acquired from a "One Eyed Willie" some time ago. ;) So our children and a few brave neighbors ventured into the nearby woods to see if they could find the treasure. Sure enough, they dug up this treasure chest full of coins and came home to divide the spoils. Thy were so excited. What a fun Saturday morning!

Getting ready...

Checking out the loot

The map, which one of the neighbors brought home for her brother