A Distinct Difference

People have asked and I spent most of my pregnancy wondering…

What would be different about having a girl after two boys? Would I notice?

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Besides the obvious- like she wears cute dresses and thanks to Candy has a whole collection of hair bows now (no tutus yet).

We have noticed she has a cry that has a higher pitch than her brothers.

She already fits the stereotype by “talking” more and earlier than her brothers.

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But so far, in these last two months I can say she creates a distinct difference.

She provokes this very gentle and sweet side from her brothers. So the other day when Paul was getting angry at me for a reason that escapes me now, I just placed her in his arms. He lowered his voice, focused on her face, and the tension visibly disappeared. She is already a calming force.

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I am still curious to know if it is because she is the baby, a baby girl, or more of this is about her personality. I may never know, but it’s fun to speculate and take inventory when there is a noticeable difference.

Make a Match

It’s one way to solicit help with laundry.

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He looks carefully

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and I say “one-point” for every pair.

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This time he scored twenty points.

Festival of Books

I have wanted to go since we moved to Long Beach (roughly seven years).

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We finally made it today- on a whim.

With lunches packed and wearing our walking shoes, we headed to the USC campus.

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Henry’s shirt was the perfect attire.

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While Paul wore a “ground crown”

appropriately dubbed so by the dude selling books for McSweeney’s.

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Someone else managed to nap three of the four hours,

while walking around-thanks to the Moby Wrap (and Angela)

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We stopped at all the booths I wanted to see:

826 LA

Chronicle Books

Scholastic

McSweeney’s

Penguin Young Readers

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and rounded up free art work

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and found some new (Max and Ruby) and used (George and Martha) books

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but my favorite find is the Jordan Crane board book called “Keep Our Secrets” printed with heat sensitive ink that when you touch reveals the “secrets” on every page. Super fun!

Dinner and a Show

cheese pizza

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a rock-n-roll band

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out on the town

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happy Friday

 

Our Monkey

This boy can’t sit still.

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Ji’chan likes to say he has “ants in his pants.”

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He needs to change his perspective CONSTANTLY.

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His energy keeps us on our toes.

At Home

The greetings and goodbyes

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The colors and exploration

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The problem solving and determination

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The clutter from a master’s program being wrapped up

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The hero

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The decison

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So after deliberation, debate, and prayer we have left the co-op preschool and are keeping Paul at home for the next two months. He has shown some signs of needing more time with family as our home transitions and adapts to being a family of five. We are definitely at peace with the choice and excited at the chance for him to be with his father for a little longer to bond. 
I (of course) am jealous and counting down the weeks until summer when we can all be together – seven more weeks- but our home is a bustling place these days and it helps that the sun is setting later. The days feel longer and we feel like we have that much more time to be together.

Lessons for Life:

Get outside more.

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Comfort trumps fashion.

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Try something new.

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Be spontaneous.

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Cooking together is more fun than cooking alone.

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Exercise doesn’t have to be boring.

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Live in the moment.

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Life is short.

Siblings

They are learning they can play together,

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take care of each other,

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celebrate the good weather,

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and conversate with one another.

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It is the beginning of a bond that I love watching unfold.

Orthodox Easter

Paul and Joe celebrated last night with a midnight service, while the rest of us “lightweights” went to sleep.

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They came home around 3:30 a.m.

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The fasting of Lent has ended.

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And Stephanie (thank you) made these beautiful gifts for our children:

personalized capes (superheros unite!) adding to our growing collection of costumes

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and an amazing quilt with scooter fabric inside the stars.

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I love creative folks.

Early Literacy

Paul is definitely a reader. Not in the baby genius sense, but in the developmentally appropriate for a four-year old way. Here is just a peek at the last twenty-four hours:

Taking time out from running around to sit in his “library” and enjoy reading.

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Reading the instructions to his lego building.

(Maybe this is why Joe is so much better at building our purchases from IKEA and I just walk away in frustration?)

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Imitating the reading of prayers and songs like the priests.

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Reading the entire book almost entirely correct with a combination of memorization, picture clues, and the predictable text of this book (developing the beginning of a growing interest in dinosaurs).

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The best part is he self-identifies as a reader, inviting me to listen to him read a story aloud.