Monday, January 31, 2011

The little girls are four!

Happy Birthday Abigail!
Happy Birthday Bethany!

We love you both very much and hope you had a great birthday.

(Yeah, a real post with photos is forthcoming...I'm literally falling asleep at the keyboard and must obey my body's need for sleep!)

Monday, January 24, 2011

Bedtime Hell

Abigail continues to be a child who really needs sleep.  I can tell when she hasn't had a 'nap day' when I pick her up from Little Bears.  And today she didn't get a nap.

By the time 7:45 rolled around, I was in the first steps of getting the little girls to bed. A much-welcomed phone call from Daddy slowed us a bit, but I was still hopeful that a smooth bedtime could be had.

My first clue that things might be rough came when Abigail refused to go upstairs and get pjs on and brush teeth before reading books.  I steamrolled that decision anyway and went ahead on up, forcing her to follow me or miss books.

The next delightful interchange occurred over the choice of pjs.  The two options held no appeal, but again I held fast and she chose the princess gown.  She made it very *very* clear how unhappy she was, but the choice was made.

Bethany wasn't totally innocent at this point and was dithering and dallying herself.  That's when I set the timer for 5 minutes and challenged them to get dressed and teeth brushed before it went off.   The timer gambit may have been my fatal flaw in getting Abigail too wound up, but it did result in two little girls totally ready for books (even a potty stop, which I hadn't required quite yet).

Book reading was rough.  Abigail didn't want to share my lap and hit and kicked out at me and her sister.  After a warning, I turned away from her and read anyway.  She realized I was serious and settled in for the story, looking sort of 'around' my side and staying put.

Songs were a little easier (but not completely peaceful), and I could tell her energy was waning.  She snuggled during her song and got into bed when asked.  Her breathing almost immediately deepened and she finally relaxed.  By the time all the songs were done, she was murmuring her 'good nights' and she went off to la la land.

I love my daughters.  But I have to admit I have a hard time 'feeling the love' at times.  Like tonight, at the height of Abigail's tizzy.

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Day with Susannah

Susannah and I wore ourselves out yesterday with her 'big' Christmas present:  a 'shopping spree' with Mom.  We went out to Kohl's, where Susannah surprised herself by trying on and liking a sweater she would have normally passed by and pairing it with a cute ruffly tank top.  Susannah found some cute jewelry to accessorize the new tops, too.

After a late lunch at Subway, where Susannah had one of *the* best sandwiches she's ever had, we hit Target.  Susannah found another shirt, a cheap pair of velour lounge pants and a pair of flats, adding to her fashion stash.

The next stop was the Dimond Mall.  We hit Aerie, Forever 21, Old Navy, DQ/Orange Julius, Auntie Anne's and the Calendar Store.  Scored two great things at Forever 21 that has TONS of stuff to look at (and even Mom tried on something).  The calendar store had all calendars 75% off and everything else was 50% off.  I got some Buckyballs for myself for only $15.

She spent her final few bucks at our last stop, Borders, on last year's Newbery winner.

All in all, we had an awesome day of hanging out, fashion suggestions and general togetherness.  Susannah shops sorta like I do, content to wander a bit, meander some, and take her time to look through stacks and racks to find treasures.  We were both pretty tired by the end of the day, though, and spent about 10 hours out and about (including the two hours of driving).

I think I can get used to offering that kind of 'big' present to her every Christmas.  A gift that gives joy to more than just the receiver isn't so bad!

Sunday, January 9, 2011

Song lyrics

Just a couple of samples of slight changes the little girls make to the songs they love.  They don't make nearly as many changes as they did and get most of the lyrics correct at this point, but there are a few cute mistakes hanging on yet.

Brown girl in the rain, la la la la la...
Brown girl in the rain, la, la la la la la...
Brown girl in the rain, la la la la la...
Looks like a pudding in a plum plum plum!

Rudolph with the reddy shiny nose...

Jingle bells, jingle bells, jingle all the way!
So much fun it is to rhyme, Wun-ta (?) in his sleigh!

Old Macdonald had a farm,
On his farmer had a cow
With a moo moo there and moo moo there
everywhere everywhere a moo moo...

Thursday, January 6, 2011

More dinner time fun

And you didn't think that was possible, after my last post, did you?  We-ell, let me tell you that dinner is seldom boring at our house.  And almost never quiet.

Tonight's loudest entertainment came from the esteemed father of the household, who made interesting noises and faces with his dinner glass.  He somehow inserted his lower jaw into the glass, creating suction with this mouth and a rather undignified-sounding noise along with it.  The process was something like this:  insert chin and mouth, pull down glass to create noise while making a weird face, pop the glass off his face and begin the whole thing again.  It sure made the little girls giggle (and me, too).

Before and in between all of this glorious noise, Abigail was busy consigning 'titles' upon her big sisters.  Moriah was a princess and Susannah was a...rabbit.  ??  Then, Abigail further shared what she thought about her sisters.  Moriah was awesome and Susannah was...stinky.  Yep.  Stinky.  I have to say that I beg to differ because I don't find Susannah stinky.  Moriah is indeed awesome and Abigail declared Daddy, Mommy and Bethany awesome as well, smart girl.  Poor defenseless Bubby was at work, but Abigail eventually pulled him into the conversation and pronounced him as part of the Stinky club (and yeah, he's a teen-aged boy...she wasn't too far off the mark some days, to be honest). 

Anyone send in the Dinner with the Doepkens pilot idea to TLC yet?

Monday, January 3, 2011

Reality show?

Samuel posed an interesting idea tonight:  a reality show called Dinner with the Doepkens.  This was caused by the chaotic cacophony that came about after the core consumption of our comestibles was complete.  (*snort* like my use of alliteration?)

Anyway!  Jim made us a scrumptious meal of turkey, mashed potatoes and veggies tonight and the five older Doepkens had thoroughly enjoyed it.  Especially the mashed potatoes, which were made with garlic salt (or just garlic?), cheddar cheese and parmesan cheese.  Hearty and thick, with chunks of potato....  sigh.  *licks chops*

Yes, yes, back to the story.  We were trying to coax the little girls to eat more dinner and it began to get progressively noisier after that.

Perhaps Samuel's impression of a pterodactyl began the noise-fest.  Squawking in Abigail's face, raising his arms in a 'wing-like' manner.  Then snatching Bethany from her chair and airlifting her to the couch, pterodactyl-ing the entire way.

Perhaps describing the loud noises a student of mine makes just encouraged Jim to attempt and successfully emulate said noises.  Very successfully.  Gleefully so.

Perhaps the little girls thought adding their voices to the din would create some sort of harmony.  They are certainly noisy enough on their own most days.

Perhaps Susannah was feeling left out and just had to read me a passage of a book she was engrossed in, having to speak louder and louder over her little sisters' squeals and squeaks.

In any case, the noise level made it near impossible to make (or hear) rational, calm conversation and that is when Samuel made the reality show comment.

Dinner with the Doepkens.  Has a catchy ring to it.  But would anyone dare?