Friday, December 17, 2010

Friday Focus- Bianca

Bianca is in that fabulous stage where she loves to sing. We've been doing circle time basically her whole life, and all the Pink Ladies have learned the words to their favorites and belt them out regularly. My personal favorite of hers is the medley she does of the alphabet song and Twinkle Twinkle Little Star. Since they're the same tune, she pretty much interchanges the words and it's different every time. Yesterday it was "twinkle, twinkle, little star, h, i, j, k, how you are..." She's also fond of "a, b, a, b, a, b, a, twinkle, twinkle, little star".

She also loves to read, but not in a group. When we sit down and read our story book every morning, she usually pays half attention while she's playing with toys and won't come sit down. She listens, but she doesn't really like to try to look at the pictures when there are other kids in the way and she has to share the space. :) If she happens to be the only one around she'll ask me to read to her, but she has to sit in my lap and have my full attention to make it through the book. Otherwise she's off to the next thing.

Bianca has got a great belly laugh. She doesn't bring it out very often here unless I tickle her, so it's always a treat to hear it when she thinks something is funny. It's fun to watch her too.

Don't you just have to smile with her? :) Love it.

Proudly displaying her piggy headband during the Big Red Barn unit.

I really love that the girls are all such good friends. They bicker like sisters and sometimes pretend they don't like each other much, but there are a lot of moments like this. Stitch came and got Bianca and was taking her to the table to serve her some sort of delicious plastic lunch.

Eating lunch is very hard work and don't let anybody tell you otherwise.

You may notice she's got a different hairstyle in every picture. Kudos to her mom for getting all that accomplished so early in the morning. She always comes decked out with various ponytails and cute accessories. Over Thanksgiving she had tons of beaded braids put in and she came back looking super fancy. The other girls went wild. LOVED her hair and were so sad that theirs wasn't like that. At lunch that first day Bianca was sitting in her chair laughing and wildly shaking her head back and forth so all the beads clicked together and made a lot of noise. I thought Aurora's head was going to pop off- she was shaking even harder and not making any sound at all, of course. It made her really mad that she was working so hard to be as cool as Bianca and couldn't get her hair to make noise. I couldn't stop laughing.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Getting Ready For Christmas

First of all, you know I love Mary P. She writes some of the BEST child care posts. I want to be her when I grow up. :) This post about giving and Santa and the holidays is fabulous, I think. Check it out.

Next: we baked our first batch of Christmas cookies today. Attendance is down this week due to sickness and maybe it's cowardly, but I prefer baking when not everybody is here. :) We'll do it again several times when there are different combinations of kids here so they all get to help. They're getting pretty decent at taking turns and standing in line, but they get really squirrelly if there are too many and they have to wait a "long time".

Stitch has been cracking me up through this whole process. She stirred and poured and took her turn, and then went and buckled herself in a chair. "Tray on! I ready! Eat cookie!" I keep telling her it's not time for cookies, that we're going to have lunch first, and they're too hot, but she is not dissuaded from the idea that if she just sits there long enough, cookies will come her way.

We made the cookies off the back of the candy cane flavored Hershey kisses bag, with a few allergy modifications. Usually I make my own flour blend or use one of the ones from my favorite cookbook, but I've had this bag of Bob's Red Mill all purpose gluten free baking mix in the cabinet and it needed to be used. To be honest, I didn't have high hopes for it. It's got garbanzo bean flour and fava bean flour in it. I was worried the cookies would taste like hummus or something. Plus I can't get over the Silence of the Lambs reference about eating the guy's liver with fava beans and a nice Chianti. I want to make that weird slurpy noise he makes every time I think of fava beans.

Yes, I am a strange individual. But some things just stick with ya, more than you wish they would, ya know?

Here. Look at Silvermist being cute and helping, to get that other image out of your head.

Anyway. Happily, they do not taste like hummus, or anything else unsavory. The mint kisses help a lot. It's still not my favorite cookie flour but I bet it might be good for thickening sauces or something like that.

Now I have to go make lunch quickly before their heads explode from lack of cookie!

Monday, December 6, 2010

Monthly Recap... A Little Late

Maybe it's more like a general catchup than a recap of a particular time. We've been busy, and yet not. Just as we were gearing up to start the huge work of our Thanksgiving feast, I did a head count and realized lots more people would be on vacation than there usually are. We ended up cancelling it and in fact we only had 2 kids here that day. I was both disappointed and relieved. The feast is always so much fun, but it's a LOT of work. And last year we had more older kids who could actually help. The Pink Ladies are just now getting to the point where they are an even amount of help and hindrance, and of course the little boys just get underfoot and try to climb up the stools. I think next year when all the girls are three, there will be some serious cooking though.

We took a bit of a break from Read It Once Again, and I've missed it. A new binder came today for The Letters Are Lost, so I'm going to spend the next few days copying and laminating and getting that one ready to go. We haven't decided if we're going to start it before Christmas or wait until January. I think I may wait, and in the meantime go to the library and check out ALL the books they have that are available through RIOA, and read them to the kids over the next few weeks to see which ones they like best for the spring ordering.

We've had a couple spaces open for the past few months, and babies are starting to be born! We have a new little boy starting next month who was born last week if he was on schedule. And we have this tiny princess starting soon too:

I cannot wait to get my hands on this greasy girlie and sniff her neck. Hercules and Tigger are getting SO BIG, SO FAST. Feels like a long time since we had such a tiny one.

Speaking of the boys, Hercules is full-on walking. All over the place. I just really don't see how it happened so fast. He still seems little to me. But he insists that he is in fact a Large Man and should be treated as such.

Tigger is pulling up on stuff and crawling lightning fast. He tortures his sister on a daily basis by pulling up on her tray and trying to eat her lunch. She is unimpressed by his skills.

And thanks to the both of them, my Christmas tree is in solitary confinement this season.

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Woo Hoo! We Have Poo!

I think this is probably the only job where you get so excited about somebody else's bodily functions. Or at least this industry. I guess maybe other types of caregivers have to be interested in or take note of such things as well. My mom always used to say that everybody has to deal with some kind of poop in their job. Most people's just isn't literally POOP. But anyway...

The five Pink Ladies are all officially two years old now and are beginning to shamble slowly toward the idea of potty training. Some are further along than others in terms of whether or not they will sit, will do anything when they sit, will be truthful about contents of diaper when asked... :) We've been having a bit of success with a couple of them peeing in our froggy potty on a semi-irregular basis, but nobody has done the Big Job until today.

And the winner is......


(Kanga's not excited about this at ALL.)

If I was mean, I'd put a picture of her sitting on it. But A: what if she wants to be a lawyer when she grows up and there are pictures of her first poop on the internet? And B: I didn't take any pictures of her sitting there.

I absolutely love that it was Roo. She doesn't really get to be first at anything very often. I think it will be hilarious if the girl who can't yet walk unassisted is the first one trained. But she told Kanga she needed to and wanted to sit on the potty, and this is the FIRST TIME she's ever even sat on the potty at all. Major success. I'm so excited for her. And she's so proud. I stamped her hand with a blue kittycat for a reward and she keeps waving it in my face and talking about meow and poop. It's funny.