Monday, March 21, 2016

Edith's Toddler Bed

We have entered into new territory in the McGee house. It's been happening for a while, really. Our spunky girl has been causing some trouble when it comes to sleeping. She liked to manipulate us by throwing out all of her animals/pillows/pacifier and then getting our attention to "tuck her in" again and again and again. We knew this couldn't keep going and there were days where we just didn't and she fell asleep all alone. 

Then... she learned how to climb out. She wasn't using any furniture to hoist herself in and out. She just hiked her leg up and free-fell over. She is so fearless. After one naptime/ evening of putting her back in bed repeatedly, we knew that our crib days are over. We also used this transition time to get rid of the pacifier, which was long-needed but still is hard for everyone!

Edith's first naptime in the crib: here she is asleep half-on the bed.

We ordered a bed rail for the bed (and new bedding! not pictured. This little quilt was MY baby blanket!).

Edith was the easiest sleeper. Such a contrast to our other child. We used to just give her all the stuffed animals and her paci and just shut the door. Sometimes she would play in her crib for a while, but she always settled down easily.

Now she often cries to sleep at nap because mean Mama sits next to her bed, so she can't get out and play. I just bring my kindle and read next to her bed. It only takes 15-45 minutes...

At night she ends up falling asleep on the floor every single night. And we will put her in the bed, check on her 30 minutes to an hour later, and she's back on the floor again! I have no idea why!

In the morning and after nap (and sometimes at night when she hasn't fallen asleep yet) she peeks her little hand out from under the door so we will know she is awake. This morning she put her mouth under the door and said "Hi Mom!"

So... a new stage of life! Lord knows she still needs a nap. Two days recently she skipped nap and she was such a wreck by the end of the day that she fell asleep by 6:30 after crying so had from being sad and cranky. We love this little girl and I'm so thankful for her spunk and silliness, even if it means we have to stay on our toes!

February Date Nights!

In February our friend Jenn babysat for us TWICE.... we were able to have a Valentines Day date AND Anniversary date! For our Valentine's Day date we walked down 5th Avenue to Gino's which is a very popular Italian restaurant, and then we went to Jean Danet bakery (on our block) for cheesecake. Everything was in walking distance so we were home in an hour and fifteen minutes... not quite the party animal date but it was really nice to go out and explore our neighborhood a little!

For our anniversary we wanted to do a little exploring. We noticed an Ethiopian restaurant in Cobble Hill, so we went there and had some Tibs and Doro Wat! :) We went to Ample Hills Creamery for dessert and it was just as delicious as we had anticipated. The night was so fun to just go out and celebrate seven years of marriage and to try two new restaurants. 

Huge shout out to Jenn P for loving our family so well and for allowing us the opportunity for not just one but TWO date nights in a month! Dates for us are really rare, and two in a month had us feeling spoiled! :)

Tuesday, March 8, 2016

Long walks (95 street park!)

If the weather is in the 40s then we are going on a walk. If it is in the 50s (rare winter days) then we are definitely not going to be in the house! There's this park on 95th street and 7th Avenue that my kids both enjoy. It's about a 20 ish block walk for us to get there but it is worth it. My mom gave us a Dunkin Donuts gift card for Valentine's Day and I will stop in for donuts on the way and the kids get a "yummy snack" on the way to the park. There's a building with a mirror window that we always stop to giggle at. 

We've been to this park several times in the last few months because I enjoy the exercise, the kids do great on the walks, and we love this park! (Mirror window below - kids typically wave at it, I wonder what the people inside think??)

We are really working on Israel gaining independence on the playground. This park is usually not that busy so we can work with him on walking around and pulling up without too many stares. What I like about this park is that I can be giving Israel one on one attention and Edith is still visible and stuck in that space. Some of the other parks she can wander off and I get nervous about how far she could go before I notice.

I also love this park because of the handicap swing! This is the only park in Bay Ridge that I have found that has one.

My kids love the whale slide.

They also love spotting airplanes! There are always so many airplanes!

I'm thankful for good long walks, fun outings with my kids, and a park that my kids can enjoy. 

Monday, March 7, 2016

Winter Outings: Children's Museum, Zoo, Etc.

A few weeks ago I met my friend Frauke and her son Arthur at the Children's Museum. Edith loved the turtles and fish, pretending to shop in the marketplace, splashing water and just running around with other kids. It's only about 35-40 minutes away and I was able to find parking pretty easily on the way there, but the trip home was nightmarish and I swore I wouldn't drive again for a while!

I recently discovered that there is a Target shopping center with other outlet places and the biggest perk of all is there is a PARKING LOT! And it is only 30 minutes away depending on traffic! Thank you Lord! Now, the Target is pretty chaotic but that is New York. I met my friend Laura and we took the kiddos. The key to shopping with kids in Target is POPCORN. We sauntered through the store and got our cheap stuff (thank you national pricing Target!). I WILL BE BACK!!! :)

I took the kids on a walk one day to get us out of the house while the internet people were in our apartment with Will. It was too cold to go far so we stopped in for french fries!

The weather is going to be warming up a little this week but today was still a little chilly. I decided to take advantage of the zoo (we have a membership) while it was still pretty sparse of people. Edith LOVED it. We went in the fall and met some friends but it had been a while. Edith loved naming the animals, watching the sea lions in the water, and looking at the different exhibits. She fed the sheep and wanted more food to do it again! It was a really fun outing and our little Brooklyn Zoo is the perfect size for her to explore. It's only 40 minutes away by train and we will be back!!

Although Winter has been cold and tough, we know that 2015-2016 was "Mild" and that winter is not completely over yet. Last year there were still snows in late March! We're trying to get out while we can and explore this awesome city. Brooklyn/ NYC is such a fun place to raise kids!

Sunday, March 6, 2016

Edith: 2.5 Years Old

Well, I'm definitely behind on this but technically Edith is still two-and-a-half so here's an update! 

Edith is a total SPONGE right now. She is learning so much every day and it is so fun to watch her explore and pick up new things. I swear she learns several new words every day and she continues to surprise me by saying things I never taught her, or little phrases that are appropriate but she didn't know! She just makes my heart want to burst with pride and joy because she is such a delight. 

Edith is wearing 24 month /2T clothes and size 5/6 shoes. She's still wearing size 4 diapers and is NOT "showing the signs" of potty training unless you count sobbing whenever I put her on the potty as one?? I'm in no hurry to potty train and she doesn't have any interest in it either. 

Edith loves tea parties - she grabs my hand and says "tea party!" and we head to her room to play. She likes for me to sit in a specific chair and her to sit in a specific place. She lines everything up just right and then we play. She loves sniffing flowers, making piles and pretending to be row row a boat, ride horseys or crawl like kitty cats. 

Order is such a thing for her (just like daddy). She will line up toys and cups in rows. I will look on my dresser and she's lined up my makeup. She loves to get into things she shouldn't get in, like my makeup or the drawer with the kitchen utensils. She will climb on things to reach what she wants. She grunts at the door of the refrigerator as she attempts to open it for milk. 

Edith loves her brother "brah-yer" and will give him hugs and kisses. She tackles him and lays on top of him for big bear hugs. They splash each other in the tub and she will make funny faces at him in the stroller. She doesn't like it when he messes up her tea party or doesn't participate in the exact way she wants him to play. She is not that great at sharing but we are working on it. 

Edith loves Daniel Tiger, Super Why, and will watch most PBS shows. She acts out all of the songs on "Mother Goose Club." She gives Ugga Mugga (Daniel Tiger) kisses and says "bugga mugga!" She wears a cape (an Ethiopian flag) on her back and says she is Super Why. She loves singing "I like you, I like you just the way you are" (Daniel Tiger song). She carries a Tigey (Daniel Tiger stuffed animal) around everywhere and is on her second one because the first was so gross and falling apart! Her favorite screen time activity is watching videos of herself that are saved on my phone. She will reenact them and imitate facial expressions. She is her biggest fan. 

Edith is an explorer and loves dirt and sticks and trees. When we go to the park she loves to climb and jump and swing, but she always goes for the messy mud piles. I am pretty much guaranteed to need to change her clothes after a park trip. I recently introduced her to jumping in puddles and she loved splashing "splash splash" with her hands and feet. 

She's still a really picky eater but she loves carrots, blueberries and strawberries the most. If she's hungry she will bring me an entire bunch of bananas from the kitchen. If she likes her food she will grunt "mmm mm!" If she doesn't like what I have served her, she will climb in her chair, look at the plate, and walk away. It's a real problem, especially because it makes Israel want to get down too!

Two and a half is SO SASSY. Edith can throw down some major tantrums and will sob over absolutely nothing. Sometimes she just gets out of the crib and lays down on the floor face first and I have no idea what just happened. When it is naptime and she doesn't want to go to bed, she will throw everything out of her crib over and over and get madder and madder. She still naps 1.5-3 hours! Before nap she has to round up all of her stuffed animal friends and throw them into the crib and she won't rest until all of her favorite stuffed animals are situated. 

Edith can give the best snuggles. When she hasn't seen her dad all day, she runs and tackles him with a big bear hug. When I have left to go somewhere and come back, she shouts "Ma! Ma! Ma!" when I come back and she will run from across the apartment to greet me. She loves "friends" and is a sweet little hostess. She enjoys church nursery and especially the cleanup portion when she gets to break down the floor mats. 

Edith goes to the gym childcare several times a week and she typically enjoys it and always waves "bah-ye! bah-ye!" in her southern drawl as we leave. She's really easy to run errands with and we go to the store several times a week for groceries or things. 

Edith knows her whole alphabet and recognizes letters everywhere we go. She will say "A - apple! B- book! C- cat.. meow! D - duck...quack quack!" She loves puzzles and will do them over and over again. She can count to 19 sometimes! She knows shapes and a few colors. I am seriously so in awe of her little brain and how easily things come. I know this may seem really braggy and annoying and I have often cringed reading other people's blogs about how great your kid is when I felt like my special needs child was just slipping farther and farther behind. 

Edith has been such a gift for me in many ways, but one of those has been because of her brother. She balances us out, forces us to play. She has been grace to me when I needed it. Her sweetness is so needed in our home. She makes me feel like I'm a good mom when she just does things and I have been doing those things over and over and over for years with Israel and he still doesn't get it. I have two completely different parenting experiences going on in my home, and they both have their challenges and benefits.

At this point at 2.5 Edith is my little sidekick. We're together all day every day and we are just so in tune with each other. It is so fun parenting her. (It's not fun sometimes too ... 2 year olds!) At this stage it just keeps getting more fun and I feel so blessed to watch her learn and grow everyday!

Loves sidewalk chalk: 

Can make herself very comfortable:

Is weirdly attached to Tim Keller's Center Church book. 

Likes to play with our mailboxes and press the button to exit the building all by herself.

Can destroy a room in 2 seconds. 

Sleeps with 7-8 stuffed animals and is still in a crib. 

Travels around the city like a champ.

Loves to empty bins, buckets or boxes to sit in them. Also, she has crazy hair every day. 

Loves her little people. 

Can pout on command.

THIS GIRL! Love her so much. 2.5 is my new favorite. 
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