Monthly Archives: March 2016

Owlet: 55 Months!

… or the March 4 post covering February 2016. I’m less than a week late! Woohoo!

The enthusiasm for Star Wars continues. One day I did her hair in the three bunches Rey has, and she was thrilled. Then she found a stick, and said, “Rey has a stick. I have a stick, too!”

I was excited to show the kids the new Finding Dory trailer, because Finding Nemo is one of our favourites, and we’re planning for Finding Dory to be the first film Owlet sees in the theatre this summer. She was so thrilled about the trailer and the plan that she started telling everyone at school that she had been to a movie theatre, and was going to go after school, and… right. This is an excellent example of the kind of magical thinking she engages in. Her educator usually checks with me at the end of the day to confirm various facts, because Owlet’s make-believes are so detailed and sincere that it’s hard to separate what’s imagined and what’s fact.

Also, she says “movie heater” instead of “movie theatre,” and while it is utterly adorable, we suggested we call it the “cinema” instead, which she readily accepted. It’s much easier for her to say.

The kids both saved up their money and they each bought a new playset for Disney Infinity this past month. Sparky bought the Rise Against the Empire set with Luke and Leia, and Owlet bought the Inside Out set with Joy and Anger. (I love that my kids are willing to buy toys that they intend to share and can both play with.) She was so excited to put her money in a little wallet, find the playset in the store, and carry the bag after buying it. This is the second thing she has bought with her own money (the first was a Periwinkle doll from the Disney Fairies line) and it’s been interesting talking to her about how to save money and consider what to spend it on. There have been serious discussions about how yes, she could take the money she currently has and buy X, but she was saving that money to buy Y, and if she spends what’s currently there then she has to start all over again if she still intends to purchase Y.

Her colouring majorly leveled up this past month — her colour choices, control over colouring specific small regions and staying inside lines has suddenly improved. Drawing has also leapt up a level; wow, her flowers and people! (I can’t find any of her recent people, unfortunately; I think she gave them all away.) More adding landscape and/or environment to the basic picture: those are fish all along the bottom of the water fairy’s picture on the left and bubbles around her, and flowers around the garden fairy on the right. She drew frames around them both.

This month’s music classes introduced the recorder, the clarinet, and the transverse flute.

And during the last one, the flute class, she actually paid attention. Sort of. At least she didn’t whine and try to climb all over me.

The children have a new musical obsession. Ceri bought me the Hamilton cast album, and that has mostly replaced Hunchback as what they ask to listen to in the car. Owlet says, “Can we listen to the one where they say, ‘What’s your name, man?’“) and wanders around the house chirping, “Alexander Hamilton… my name is Alexander Hamilton…” to herself.

I cut Owlet’s hair again a couple of weeks ago, and I cut off more than I intended. She likes wearing it loose and down, and it was getting in the way everywhere, so I told her she needed to start agreeing to having it pinned back or we could trim it. She immediately chose the cut. We discussed how much to trim; she wanted it shorter, just above her shoulders, but I wanted to be sure there was still enough length to do the Elsa braids she asks for periodically. So I put it in a ponytail and misjudged where to cut. Stupid rookie mistake. Anyway, it’s shoulder length, and the curls are already bouncier (although not as bouncy as they were when they were originally that length), and it’s exactly where she wanted it. I’d cut three inches off just before Christmas because the ends were getting scraggly; that was her first real haircut other than bangs. This was another two and a half inches gone. Eek. It just feels cumulatively drastic.

And then she didn’t want me to take a picture, or to go to school the next morning, because she was afraid people would laugh at her because we cut her hair. I can’t even. How can this start so young?

Storytime! Sparky has started to read the Geronimo Stilton and the Kingdom of Fantasy series to Owlet. It’s hard to get them both wanting to do it at the same time; Owlet often asks and Sparky says no because he’s not in the mood, but when it happens it’s terrific. (Psst, this is the new haircut, too.)

We finished On the Banks of Plum Creek and began By the Shores of Silver Lake. It was hard for Owlet to wrap her head around the idea that four or five years had passed, Mary had gone blind in the interim, and there was a new baby. (More than that actually happened during that gap; the Ingalls family moved a couple of times, and there was a son born who died at the age of nine months.) We tried starting Anne of Green Gables, but it’s a bit wordy for her, so we switched to Winnie-the-Pooh.

Owlet’s educator told me something a couple of weeks ago that I have to share. The kids are all currently into pretending people are in trouble and swooping in to save them. The gym set is the safe zone, and the mats under it are the water they’re in, or the quicksand, or whatever. Well, one of the kids found Owlet on the gym set and said, “You can’t be here, no one saved you!”

“I rescued myself,” Owlet said. (I can just imagine the unimpressed look she gave the kid over the top of her glasses as she said it, too.)

Owlet: 54 Months!

.. also known as the February 4 post covering January 2016.

Owlet’s current passion is Star Wars. It’s all Star Wars, all the time over here. Which is fine with the rest of us, to be honest. She’s excited by anything Star Wars, but especially BB-8 and Rey. (Has she seen the latest film? No. Doesn’t matter.)

As you may notice, her colouring has leveled up; she’s really focusing on more precision. Colouring Rey alone wasn’t enough here; she drew a BB-8 in the upper left, embellished and expanded on the line-art house for Rey, added a sunburst thing behind her head, and a landscape. (And then she put some Disney Fairies stickers on it, because who doesn’t like fairies, right?)

She’s a fan of R2 but to a lesser degree than BB-8, calls Threepio “Key-Threepio,” and is enthusiastic about Rey’s friends Finn and Poe Dameron. Lots of what she knows about Star Wars comes from playing Disney Infinity with Sparky. They have watched some SW: Rebels in French on weekend TV, so she thinks Sabine is awesome as well, and is an enormous Ahsoka fan. Sparky gave her one of his Jedi starfighter toys plus his Ahsoka figure, and she was thrilled. They play Star Wars together a lot.

Her daycare was closed for a week at the beginning of February, and because it was deadline time for not one but two projects I was handling, she had a couple of days at another home daycare run by someone who trained at our regular daycare. I told her we’d pack a lunch for her to take, which necessitated a lunch box, and she asked for one with BB-8 on it. Well, the lunch box manufacturers haven’t stepped up their game and started producing Star Wars: The Force Awakens gear yet, so I searched everywhere and eventually found this tin box at Michael’s for her. She was super excited, both about the lunchbox idea (we’ve told her she’ll use one in kindergarten, so this was an early treat), and also because, well, Rey and BB-8 are both on her lunch box, how cool is that?

There’s been an increasing amount of acting out at daycare and her new music class: no focus, whining, pouting when she doesn’t get to do what she wants right away. I realize that sounds minor, and kind of to be expected with kids in general, but it unusual for her, and it’s frustrating.

Speaking of music class, this past month she was introduced to the violin, where the only successful thing she did was tuck it under her arm in rest position:

… because of course she knows how to play a violin, right?

She missed the class where they met the viola, but the next one was the double bass, which she didn’t like; she kept crawling into my lap and hiding her face in my shoulder, saying that it sounded angry.

Favourites music-wise these days, she is all about the studio cast recording of The Hunchback of Notre Dame, which is an excellent reworking and expansion of the songs and score from the Disney film (and story, thankfully; the production team accurately called it “a Victor Hugo adaption with the score of Disney’s Hunchback“), but I am getting very tired of it, because it’s all the kids ask to listen to in the car. I am all for introducing new musicals to my children, but I have a saturation point.

They did a unit on arctic animals this past month at daycare. Here’s some art, which she further embellished when we brought them home. There’s a bonus whale with a googly eye in the polar bear one, and a puffin egg in the arctic fox one. (Apparently puffin eggs are bright red. Keeps them from getting lost in the snow, I guess?)

We finished reading Little House on the Prairie and are now reading On the Banks of Plum Creek, which she calls “Mary and Laura in the Deep Deep Deep Underground House” (which makes it sound more like a bunker than a sort of basic hobbit hole). We just read about the grasshopper disaster and it took her a bit to fully understand what losing the entire crop of wheat meant for the family. Mary and Laura have also just started school at this point of the book, and she was quite interested in that, and the interaction between the different children there.

On the way to and from daycare each day, we pass where she’ll be going to school this fall. “There’s my kindergarten!” she says each time. And since the name of the school above the front door also has the school board symbol, when she saw that symbol on Sparky’s most recent report card, she said, “That’s from my kindergarten!” Not yet, child. Let’s not rush report cards for you just yet.