One of Kate’s absolute most favorite things to do right now is twirl with Daddy.
He loves it, too.
He holds her hands, she gets a running start, running circles around him, and then he lifts her up and twirls her around. Kate goes silent, opens her mouth with awe and wonder, and just stares up at G as they twirl.
It’s as if time stops and it’s just the two of them.
It’s a beautiful thing.
Other things Kate loves this month is The Lorax Movie, the color purple (not the movie), tuna with mayonnaise (not stirred up!), 20 kisses on her back at bedtime, and listening to Bruno Mars’ song “Marry You” over and over and over again, thanks to this flash mob proposal we let her watch on YouTube months ago. The second we get in my car she asks me to play it and to continue repeating it for the duration of our ride. If we get to our destination and it’s in the middle of the song, we have to wait until the song is over before we can turn the car off. I think I’ve heard this song more than all the fiancés in America combined, but Kate loves it so much and gets so excited when she hears it that I can’t help but smile and press play.
Kate has taken to saying “ta-da!” after she does things. For example, getting into her carseat without help: “Ta-da!” Finishing an art project: “Ta-da!” Washing her hands: “Ta-da!” Getting dressed: “Ta-da!” All her little daily efforts transform into lovely looks at life to be celebrated with those two simple syllables – “ta-da!”
Kate started swimming lessons this month (for the record, we didn’t find them at Target) and I’m not sure who was more nervous – me or her! G found a great pool near our house with a low teacher to student ratio and I was relieved to see that there was only one other girl in her class during her first week – especially considering parents weren’t allowed in the water with the kids at this age! She started out with a death grip on Miss Anna (her instructor) as she held her in the water, but by the end of class she was much more relaxed and warming up to being in the water. We were so proud of her!
Kate is so thoughtful and will often continue processing things in her mind long after they’ve happened. One thing she’s started doing this month is apologizing for things (that I don’t ask her to apologize for) five or ten minutes after they’ve occurred. Here’s an example: I say it’s time to get dressed, she doesn’t want to, she gets whiny or resistant, I redirect and get her back on track, I help her get dressed and we move on with our morning. From my perspective this is no big deal. Kids are often whiny when they wake up, and Kate is particularly touchy about getting dressed because she likes the feel of whatever she’s currently wearing and doesn’t want to adjust to the feel of something new. No big deal and no apology necessary in this mom’s book. Lately, though, she’s been surprising me by saying things like, “I’m sorry I had bad manners when it was time to get dressed, Mom” several minutes after the incident occurred and we’d already moved on to other things. This is so interesting to me! While I really don’t want her worrying about minor things, I do like that she’s giving some thought to her behaviors and feelings.
I’ve been asking Kate what her favorite part of her day was at bedtime for awhile now, but lately I’ve also starting asking her if anything happened today that made her sad or mad. I think it’s a good way to keep the lines of communication open and to let her know that although most of what we talk about is happy stuff, I want her to know she can talk to me about sad or scary stuff, too. Usually she doesn’t have much to report on the negative front, but when she does have something we talk it over and get to a place where Kate feels okay about it. One evening this month we had a rather memorable conversation as a result of my inquiry:
Me: “Did anything happen today that made you sad or angry?”
Kate: “Yeah…when Nathan used all the paper towels in the bathroom.”
Me: Why did that make you sad?
Kate: Because he used all of them and then Miss Joy had to go and get more.
This conversation continued for about a minute (although truthfully she didn’t seem too bothered by it) and then we moved on to talking about something else. A bit later she surprised me by suddenly saying, in her Most Serious Voice, “Tomorrow I’m going to remind Nathan not to take all the paper towels!”
“Well…,” I replied thoughtfully. “I think that’s okay, as long as you remind him as a friend, and not to be bossy.
She pondered this for a moment, then raised her pointer finger in the air and exclaimed with a smile, “Mom! THAT is a very good point.” As she finished her statement she playfully brought her pointer finger down and lightly tapped the tip of my nose on the word “point.”
Oh this funny girl!
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