Thursday, August 10, 2017

Kate - 6 Years

It's official.  Kate now has to use two hands to show you how old she is. Today, she turned SIX.  And she was so excited.  Every where we went, she told people it was her birthday.  She told the lady at the bank (who had to put a new PIN on my debit card because I forgot the number.....), she told her gymnastics teachers, she told the waitress at lunch.  Seriously, every single person we saw.  But ya know, you only turn six once so why not be excited about it? 

I love this girl so much. She is fiercely determined, she is still very strong willed, and she is independent.  It's funny though.  Up until now, her personality was very independent but she was still so little, we couldn't really give her a whole lot of independence on her own.  Now though?  It's so fun (and terrifying) to see her grow up enough for us to give her a little independence and see how she handles it.  My heart both hurts and bursts with pride to see her growing up.

She is a nurturer and a comforter. When Karsten gets hurt, Kate is the most concerned of all of us.  Kevin and I are quick to tell her to shake it off.  Our theory is that if you make a big deal of it, they cry harder.  If you tell them it's ok, shake it off, they usually do!  However, Kate's tendency is to cuddle and comfort in all situations.  She'll pick Karsten up and rock her, or give her a kiss.  And if she really does get hurt and Kevin and I are doing the comforting/doctoring, Kate is right there making sure she actually is okay. 

She is so excited for first grade and can't wait to meet her teacher, Miss Pennington, next week.  She loves to read and Kevin has been reading chapter books to her each evening. I hope her love of reading continues throughout her entire live.  

They recently started the 2nd chapter book in a series about fairy ponies.  Pretty sure Kevin never imagined THIS part of parenting, but I know he loves this time of night that has become their tradition. If you ask Kate "Do you want Mommy or Daddy to tuck you in?", she quickly answers with "Daddy."

She's a picky eater.  She does not like hamburger meat, rice or pasta, which either make cooking dinner extremely difficult when I try to accommodate her, or it makes our time at the table difficult when I don't.  Mom problems.   

However, with the foods she DOES like, she is a girl of expensive tastes. She loves shrimp, crab legs, steak, and lobster.  She recently asked if she could have crab legs at her birthday party.  Um, no.  She picked out her birthday cake tonight and what did she pick?  Red Velvet Cake. 

Oh but she will eat almost anything if it is smothered in ranch dressing. 

Yesterday she and I were in the car and we drove past the YMCA.  She asked me about swimming lessons and asked if I could find her goggles before we went back to the pool.  This was our conversation: 

Kate: Does the YMCA pool have tentacles?  
Me: No, they don't.  
Kate: Oh, good.  So I don't need my goggles. I can just open my eyes underwater.
Me: No.  You can't at that pool  It's got chlorine in the water. They put too many chemicals.....

LIGHTBULB MOMENT.  Tentacles = Chemicals

She is quick to tell me "I love you Mama" and I never get tired of hearing her tell me.  I'm just as quick to say it to her.  

When I tucked her in tonight I said "Goodnight, Birthday Girl! You have a whole year to be six."  She answered back with "I can't WAIT to be seven!"

Slow down time. I know that day will be here before I know it!

Wednesday, July 26, 2017

Girly Girls

Around age 1, Karsten became flat-out obsessed with Frozen.  We have just about every Frozen paraphernalia that's even made- dresses, shirts, shoes, stuffed animals, microphones, dolls, etc.  You name it, we've got it.  While Karsten likes Elsa, she surprisingly is biased toward Anna more.  Maybe it's the whole younger sister thing. Who knows. 

I'll sometimes put her hair in 2 puffs on her head, but she almost always asks me for Anna braids.  You know, like this...

The problem is, I don't really know how to french braid.  I can do normal braids fine, but never really learned how to do french braids.  I attempted it a few times when Kate was little but her hair quickly grew to be more than I can even hold in my hands, so I basically gave up.  After Karsten's continued begging, I figured I better try again...

Can you tell she loves it? Hopefully my next attempt turns out at least as good as this one. 

Pretty sure until the Frozen phase passes on through our house, the Anna braids might be a frequent reoccurrence.  

By now I know better than to do something for one kid and not the other, because later that evening, Kate was wanting to have "special hair" too.  We rolled her hair in curlers, she slept in them overnight, and then she woke up like this. 

I LOVE her hair like this. So fun! She even dressed herself and picked out a headband to match her fancy hair.

My girls clearly love the "girly" side of their personalities - fancy hair, dresses, bows, etc!  I love having girls and getting to do these fun things with them.

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

Backflips Coming Soon!

Kate has done gymnastics for about a year and found a sport that she really loves. Not that she has tried all kind of sports, but at age 4, soccer was not her thing. Maybe it will be later, but not so much right now. Dance was just okay, but once she tried gymnastics, she fell in love. 

Tuesday nights have been gymnastics nights for about a year, and Karsten often accompanies us to practice.  I've learned to take coloring books and the iPad, which entertains Karsten for the hour that we wait and watch.  However, Karsten would MUCH rather be out there with big sis than sitting in the observation area. 

Well, last week, her dreams came true. 

I didn't tell her about starting gymnastics until the night before because, well, if you've ever had a 2 year old, you know that they don't handle waiting very well, nor do they understand timelines (i.e. - what next week means).  Needless to say, she was pretty pumped.  I asked her what she was going to learn on her first day of gymnastics.  

Me: "Are you going to learn how to do the splits?"
Karsten: "Nope. I'm gonna do a backflip."

Guess I can't say she doesn't set high goals for herself!   

Kate was pretty excited for gymnastics too.  We'd taken the month of June off, due to vacation and other things going on, so she was ready to get back in the gym.

In the spring semester last year, I asked to bump Kate up to an older class. She's only 5 so technically she could still be in the 3-5 year old class, but she started going to a 6 and up class just because there were a lot of really younger kids with her group.  We've switched days and times for the summer so it worked out to have her back in the 3-5 year class for the next few months, which puts them in the same class.  And as it turns out, on our first day back, my two girls were not just the only ones in their class, they were the only kids in the entire gym.  Apparently this was a popular vacation week for many! Lucky us, because it turned out to be a perfect "first day" for Karsten.

Check out Kate's bridge!

Karsten was actually pretty impressive with her balance and coordination. Pretty sure all of the things Kate has been "teaching" her on our living room rug are paying off!

This swing right here was probably the MAIN thing she was looking forward to.  You can barely see it in the picture, but this is the very spot that we sat in almost every Tuesday evening to watch Kate at her practice. The fence/gate in the bottom section of the picture is where Karsten would press her head up against and watch all of the bigger kids get to do the rope swing.  Man, was she jealous.  So THIS was exactly what she wanted to do, and of course ended up being her favorite part of the day.

I'm thinking this will be a fun year, and I can't wait to see what both of my girls learn.  If Karsten ends up having as much fun as Kate, it will definitely be a successful adventure for them.

Monday, July 17, 2017

Fourth Fun

So first off, my blog is fixed. YAY! I know nothing about coding and html and all of that stuff, so thankfully I was able to get someone to fix it for me. :)  Now I am back in business. 

I'm late catching up, as always, but here goes!  Originally we were going to be home for the 4th of July, but my parents ended up being at the lake and we made a last minute decision to drive down for the day.  Spending the 4th of July on the water never disappoints.  

Please note that unless she is in the water, Karsten has food in her hand or in her mouth in every single picture.  We get on the boat and she turns into a bottomless pit! 

One of THE best things we have done is signed the girls up for swim lessons each year.  We don't live in a neighborhood, or have a pool, so the kids don't swim all the time. However, since we're at the lake so much, we wanted them to learn water safety and we didn't want them to be afraid of the water.  One thing is for sure, they LOVE to swim and play. 

This summer, Kate has conquered her fear of jumping off of the dock.  She started by jumping off of a smaller part of our dock and then worked her way up to the high dock. 

I sure am proud of this girl! Last summer, it took her the WHOLE summer to work herself up to jumping off of the side of a pool. Now look at her! 

Love this family of mine and I thank God for them daily.  Yet another 4th of July that I will always remember! 

Tuesday, July 4, 2017

Blog Update

So .... I know my blog is messed up. :(  I'm working on it.

Apparently you can't use images hosted from PhotoBucket on Blogger anymore (or something like that), so that's why the background and other images are showing up as "Please Update Your Account for 3rd Party Hosting".

And since I'm not sure how to update all this stuff myself, I've enlisted help. Thanks for bearing with me!


Tuesday, June 27, 2017


So I did an absolutely horrible, terrible, awful job of taking pictures this vacation.  Seriously.  But hey - I enjoyed myself so that's what counts, right?

We rented a house on Fripp Island with some friends and I think the pictures that I DID take pretty much shows, we all had a great time.  We drove golf carts everywhere (one of the girls favorite parts of the trip!)

We had a few pool days.  We went shopping.  We saw LOTS of deer, a few real alligators, and of course this fake one...

And we had lots of beach days. Kate and Karsten had a blast, and so did we.  It was so nice to spend mornings at the beach and then have low-key afternoons reading while the girls napped. 

At this point in the year we all really needed a vacation, and this one did not disappoint. Lots of fun and lots of relaxing.  Fripp Island, you were good to us!


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