OMG! You read that right, Lela learned to swim! Here is how it went down:
The other day at the store I bought a 6 foot baby type pool that you can fill with about 2 feet of water, just to have something to splash around in. We put it together in the backyard and the girls got in. After a while I notice that Lela is putting her face in the water with a pair of goggles on. This is a shocker! Lela has been terrified of water since she was about 18months old. Getting her to wash her hair or even get in a pool has been traumatic. Just last week we were at the pool at the gym (that is 3 feet deep) and she was in tears because Piper was in the “deep end” (4 feet) and Lela was terrified that Piper would drown. This girl has a serious fear of water (well she did).
Lela has been going through a lot lately, realizing that there is life and death and that she is going to die and so are all the people she loves. We have talked a lot about how that fear of death has to move to acceptance for her to move on. Then all of a sudden this water thing happened.
So back to the water…after she got comfortable putting her face in the water she came to tell me, I watched (I had been watching but she didn’t know) and told her I was super excited. Piper was over the moon thrilled and proud of Lela. Then Lela asked if we could go to the pool at the gym the next day, I of course said yes.
When we got to the pool she went in with her sisters and then drifted off on her own. She went in to the very shallow area and started putting her face under. Then she laid on her back and put her head down without getting water in her ears (she had ear plugs in anyway). She kept doing that until she was going under. Then she started swimming by kicking her legs and paddling with her arms. All this time she had been plugging her nose with her hand. Then all of a sudden she started doing the freestyle stroke, not plugging her nose and swimming along the side. WOW! What an amazing day for her! I was thrilled because I know it means she is strong, brave and conquering her fears. Piper was so excited for her.
Big things are happening in her little life and I am so lucky to have a front row seat:)
We are working on the girls rooms. Changing them up, adding things, taking away things, changing paint colors, changing floors, the whole nine yards! Piper was busy describing to me how she is fearful of new things, of change. She went on to tell me how she sees her current room as “light” because she knows it and she sees her new room as “dark” because it is the unknown. I thought it was quite a wonderful way to describe how she sees change (and how we all see it really). It was a pure thought for sure. It allowed us to talk about change and how it can be scary but it is just because it is something we are not used to or we don’t know what it will be like. She told me she was excited about the new room but would still see it as “dark” until we finished. I just love that little bug:)
I am so spoiled. The twins have never really had sibling rivalry and they did not really have any with Landis either. But alas the honeymoon is over. Phoebe and Landis are killing it with the rivalry. They are on top of that game plan each and every day. Mostly Phoebe does little things like pick up Landis’ shoe and then Landis’ goes all postal and freaks out until I have to get the shoe and give it back, because of course once Phoebe sees how much the shoe apparently means to Landis she is not giving it back unless we pry it out of her teeny tiny little fingers. Then Landis will give Phoebe the shoe back, because Phoebe is now screaming bloody murder, but Landis will tell her she can’t wear it. So what does Phoebe do, she wears it. This sends Landis in to another dither which usually ends in me losing a gasket and throwing shoes out the car window:) Maybe a little rivalry before now would have been good practice. LOL!
Well Lela is in a growth spurt. If the freaky fever and laryngitis didn’t tip me off (which they didn’t), the recent sleepwalking did. She is back to her usual tricks of walking in my room in the night with her big owl like eyes boring in to my brain. Sometimes she talks to me and sometimes she just stares and scares the shit out of me. I have learned not to look right at her and to just say get in my bed. That seems to work and then when Jason comes in he hauls her back to her room. On the nights when Jason doesn’t haul her back she asks us how in the heck she got in our room last night. Lela doesn’t like change or being out of control (hmmmm…..I blame Jason for that trait, but I know it is mine) so she does NOT like sleepwalking. So Jason suffers through and hauls that large child back to her room and hoists her in to her loft bed trying not to bang her head on the walls as he goes. What a saint I tell ya’.
Well recently we decided that we needed a new vehicle. The Chrysler was doing okay but little things were starting to happen that made us worry for its future. Faulty starts, bits falling off etc. So we looked around and impulsively purchase a fun, sporty, 7 passenger Mazda CX-9. Woot it was fun, it had pep, it could hold 7 and…..it was the WORST car for the girls. Oh how they moaned every single day. Too hot, not enough music, seats in, seats out and on and on. j
I think on the second day we had it Jason said, “this isn’t going to work out.” And he was right. The girls are just not ready to have sliding seats where they have to let someone out. I am used to them all flocking indoors as soon as we ge home and leaving me with the mountainful of hats, water bottles, backpacks and other daily minutia, but now they were leaving their sisters behind and that wasn’t going to work. Also I have to agree with them that the cool air did not seem to reach that 3rd row. The car has a lot of great, fun and cool features but they were holding zero fascination with the Haslup children.
Not to be defeated, we recognized and admitted our mistake and took the bold leap to move on. So now I am driving a brand new Honda Odyssey minivan and I have to say I am relieved and the girls are overjoyed. If only all mistakes could be so easily remedied:)
The terrible two generally happens for us in the throes of 3 and Phoebe is no different. Well she is different in a lot of ways because she seems to have more dexterity, more vocabulary and more will than any of her sisters did at this age. I chalk that up to being a younger sibling to a pretty tight sibling group that plays together on a daily basis.
The other day Landis could not find her twirly straw for her drink. Piper and Lela had twirly straws and Landis was sad. She wasn’t boohoo sad just head down and walking slow sad. Then a joyful Phoebe came running and yelling, “Yandis I found it, Yandis I found it, I found your traw!” Phoebe was over the moon excited that she could turn Landis’ frown upside down:) She is a true Haslup girl and she loves her sisters to the moon and back and was thrilled to be of service.
Lately the afternoons are when the pistol comes out. Because her vocabulary is much larger she can say all sorts of stuff like, “I don’t like it when you look at me.” The look at me can be replaced with sooooo many things and they mount and mount. On the flip side you have Landis saying things like, “please don’t touch my arm without my permission.” HA! The pair of them go at it all afternoon with the she is looking at me nonsense. Often times I tell them that they don’t want me to get involved, lol! The parent cop out. But I am about to put in to place the friendship bench. If this nonsense continues they will find themselves working it out on the friendship bench.
Well we went to Santa Barbara and had a wonderful trip. We did not get in to too much but just relaxed and enjoyed the weather and the company. We hit up our regular haunts like the Enterprise Fish Company and Sambo’s restaurants and even tried a couple new places that we will go back to. The girls were AMAZING. Sometimes I forget or take for granted how awesome our children are when we go out to eat. The fact that we went and ate out twice a day with no mishaps or meltdowns is pretty great.
We would get up in the morning and get breakfast, then pack up our sand toys and head to the beach. Then after a lot of beach time we would head over to the pool where the crazy children swam in the 80 degree heated water while the parents sat in lounge chairs on the side. Then we would shower and get ready for dinner. By the evening we were all ready for some downtime and sleep:)
Piper, Lela and I went on a long walk down the beach collecting treasures and we saw a seal right up close sunning himself on a rock. We also saw a school of dolphins swimming right off the shore. We flew kites for an afternoon, hit the farmer’s market, shopped downtown, rode the trolley, walked the pier, had a picnic, went to the park, rode the carousel and just had fun walking. It is such a nice down time for us and we look forward to going back. The gulls at the beach
Learning how to ride a bike is fun. Piper learned with Mystique running around behind her in the greenbelt near our house. The grass proved to be more cushioning than pavement, so kudos to her for thinking of that. Lela learned with both Mystique and I running behind her on our street. I’m pretty sure the video of me taking a tumble with her is up on flickr.
So we all learned something that day. And as she always does, Mystique comes up with brilliant ideas to make “the next time” easier. So with Landis and Phoebe she thought about this and we got them so-called “balance bikes” for Christmas a while back. These things are awesome — little bike-like things that are purely for riding around with your feet. They really help get the balancing part of a bike down without having to worry about pedaling.
Landis latched on to her balance bike without hesitating. I loved just watching her cruise around the backyard — turning, lifting her feet up, just motoring around without a care in the world. She would ride the bike around the block, even going down the part of the street that is inclined a bit which gets the girls going pretty quickly, all things considered.
And then recently Landis decided she wanted to learn how to ride her bike without training wheels. Now she had been riding Piper’s old bike with training wheels still on — and of course she was great. We couldn’t quite convincer her, though, that since she had been doing so well on her balance bike, she could probably just do her bike without anyone needing to run behind her or anything. She’s a tough nut to crack but finally yesterday on the way home from breakfast she said she was ready to try.
We got in from breakfast, I went back to the bedroom to change or something, and by the time I got out to the backyard — there was Landis cruising around the patio and on the grass. On her bike. Without training wheels. Three minutes of Mystique helping her and she was done. Training wheels cast aside, never to be seen on Landis’ bike again.
That’s our little version of evolution… the evolution of parenting. Phoebe’s already on a balance bike. I suspect in a couple years she’ll just pick up Landis’ bike without asking and start riding it around. We may not always get things right as parents, but at least we try to learn and get better. I love being a dad, especially with an awesome mom as a partner.
I don’t know if it is because I know we are getting one or I really need one but I am soooo ready for a break. I find it odd that a lot of the parents I talk to are dreading having their kids home for the break, either because their kids argue all the time, the parents don’t know what to do or whatever other reason they have. I am not judging just making an observation. I for one can’t wait to have my kids home, all to myself with no schedules to bind us! WOOT! That in itself is a vacation!
My littlest ones have been in a growth spurt both spiritually and physically. Landis is getting long and lean and Phoebe is stretching her spirit (daily) much to Landis’ dismay. They still have great bouts of good ol’ play time but now there is a lot of sass coming from Phoebe who no longer does what Landis wants her to all the time. Of course Phoebe has not learned the delicate art of compromise and right now isn’t really interested in learning it, lol. That frustrates Landis and makes my ears hurt from all the commotion. Hopefully Phoebe will realize compromise leads to more play and unwillingness to compromise leads to playing alone (which Phoebe actually likes most of the time).
Landis has started to be more and more like Lela at this age. She likes to be involved, know what is going on at all times and what is coming up next. She also likes to lay in her bed and listen to fairy tales or “read” books. She has started to draw more and express herself through paintings. She is also having those torture tantrums that Lela had. Those are the ones where she is not in receive mode and they can last for what feels like hours and in the end she is exhausted and in a lump on your lap. I call them torture tantrums because it is torturous for me to sit by and not be able to help:( Torturous for her too because they leave her so spent. Mostly it is just because something did not go her way or wasn’t just right and that sends her in to a tailspin. The good news is that I have been here before and am better prepared. She knows we love her and she is safe and she can always count on us. She is growing up and is so ready for kindergarten!
Phoebe is a little pistol and enjoys wrapping everyone she can around her little finger. She is a true gem of a little girl and makes me and her dad laugh daily (me multiple times a day). She also can make me want to pull my hair out but that is what 3 is all about:)
So spring break bring it on, I am ready for a break from schedules and for some lovely time with all my little gals and dear husband:)
Why Landis has to sleep with her limbs in your face or striking your face at random intervals each and every night.
Why Landis wakes up if you even think of moving out of the bed.
Why a certain taller than her twin, 8 year old seems to be allergic to flushing the toilet
Why Phoebe must become completely disrobed just to use the bathroom, seriously buck naked to pee
Why a certain older than her twin 8 year old doesn’t eat or sleep but still seems to function (even without coffee)
How can both 8 year olds can possibly sleep with 800 stuffed animals in their beds.
How can one 8 year old know where every scrap of minutia she owns is and the other can’t even find her shoes
Why is the fact that you have to brush your teeth every morning a surprise everyday to children
Why it is mom’s fault when you ask every night if you can do a craft at 7PM, even after I have told you umpteen times that crafts need to be started when you get home from school
These are just a few of the things I wonder when I have time to myself. Not that they need answering, in fact I am glad the girls are here just so I can ask:)
Loving my littles every day even when they drive me nuts.