Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Caterpillar on the Wall

We've started The Very Hungry Caterpillar again. This is one of my very favorite units to do, and I don't think we've ever done it with a group who's overall as young as this one. (Here's an old post with some of the things we do with older kids.) There's definitely a lot of modification and repetition, but they're enjoying it.

Sometimes I read them the actual book, but most of them are still at the super grabby stage.  Since the book has so many holes cut in it, I'm afraid it will get ripped during a group reading session.  More often, we use the pointer and the class set of pictures that I have on the wall.  (or off the wall, since my sticky stuff is dying and the stapler won't work on that kind of wall.)  Merida and Merryweather go running over there as soon as I pick up my pointer, and they can show me the moon and the egg.  Every time I say "he was STILL!  HUNGRY!" we make silly faces and they laugh.  It's fun.

So far the only things I've sent home are the little paintings, but we have done a couple other crafty items.  Here's the class caterpillar, who currently resides on our wall:

Each kiddo colored a body section and then we attached legs. They had a good time coloring!

Merryweather, taking the job very seriously.

Mufasa and Flynn were both a little shocked that I actually let them touch the crayons, I think.  Look how proud Flynn looks.  I had to sit right there and make sure they didn't taste them, of course, and their finished product doesn't have a lot of real coloring on it, but they really enjoyed the process!

Friday, May 9, 2014

Friday Focus: Flynn

Sometimes a last minute phone call just works out so great.  This cutie pie interviewed on a Friday afternoon and started Monday.  His family is friends with some of my extended family and they called when he was born, but it was before Anna started with me and I didn't have space. Since things have changed, it worked out for him to come play with us now.

Just lounging under the table, you know, like people do...

I really can't remember ever having a smoother transition with a one year old.  He's amazingly, delightfully cheerful just about all the time.  With the exception of trying to cut about six teeth at the same time, he just doesn't get sad much.  He's really fun to hang out with.

All you have to do is nod your head or open your eyes wide and he busts out laughing.  I mean, I get that I'm funny lookin', but he takes it to the next level.  :)

Not a great eater yet, but he doesn't seem to be in danger of starvation.  Live on those cheeks a bit if needed! 

Pensive.  That's about as upset as he's looked in the past month.  Aren't those eyes to die for?

Recently he got a big boy haircut.  I can totally see why momma was putting it off.  It does change the look of his face so much and really takes away a lot of the "that's my tiny baby" vibe.  However, I LOVE IT SO MUCH.  Such a handsome tiny man now.

Vanellope's mom (pre-haircut) and Bernard's mom (post-haircut) have both thought that he was theirs from the back.  I love having a group of kiddos that are so close in age and who play so well together that it's hard to tell them apart from across the room.

Here are my three musketeers boys.  They play like brothers- really well most of the time with the occasional fight to the death moment.  :)  Flynn is a fabulous addition to our day and we're so happy to have him!

Thursday, May 1, 2014


Life is good, you know?  It just is.  Some days have crazy chaotic patches, but don't they all?  I'm really, REALLY enjoying my job right now.  We're working on getting full and the days are busy and loud but it's so much fun. 

Merida was getting picked up the other day and we were talking about her graduation.  I said she was fabulous and wonderful and I'd keep her longer if I could because every day with her is so great.  Her dad kinda gave me the eyebrow and was like "really?  I mean, she's not THAT awesome.  She's got her moments."  Well, okay, yeah.  Of course she does.  Sometimes she throws herself down on the floor and cries because I'm fussing at one of her friends.  She's so tender that it hurts her feelings too.  Sometimes she gets her finger bitten because she will NOT keep it out of other people's faces and they retaliate.  There are other moments that aren't awesome, with her and with all my little people.  But it's still such a privilege to get to spend the day with them. 

I had a morning a couple weeks ago that was absolutely insane.  It was the kind of thing that I could have written one of those hilarous/pathetic posts about if I'd just put up a list of everything that happened.  It made this gig look like the worst job in the world.  It was so loud.  Nobody was happy.  It felt like playing whack-a-mole where you fix one small problem and four more pop up at once.  I realized about an hour after dropoff that it was so crazy that one of the dads blew kisses at ME instead of his kid like he usually does, and I BLEW THEM BACK AT HIM without a second thought.  I'm usually not in the habit of blowing kisses at other people's husbands, I swear.  And neither of us even noticed- the noise level just threw normal out the window. 

But you know what?  I remember that morning just because of how funny it felt later, and I can't recall any of the individual bad/annoying things that happened.  We lived through it, and the day ended up on a great note.  It is easy to have a good day at this job.  The key is ME.  There is not a baby on the earth that cries just because they want to frustrate the grownups in their lives.  People always tell me I must have the patience of a saint, but I don't feel like I have any more than anyone else.  It's just all in the mindset.  At work, your job is to figure out what people need, and get it done.  I think that applies no matter what your career field is.  In this job, I am good at figuring out what babies need and it makes me happy to make them happy.  Even if it looks to me like there is NO reason they're screaming, they have what they consider to be a very good reason.  I figure it out, I fix it, and it's all good.  On a basic level, it's very satisfying.  Whether they're hungry, need a diaper change, tired, fell down, or just mad that they have to wait while I fix other people's problems, they're not trying to vex me.  They're trying to communicate.  My job is to help let them know how to do that effectively, and to give them what they need.

That, and a drop of Joy essential oil on my feet every morning, is the key to being content.  Dancing to the Beatles helps.  Tickling babies helps too.  Life is just really great.  Take advantage. 

And keep people who smile constantly around you at all times.  That's the most fun.  :)  Love me some Flynn!  Gotta get him to work on his smolder next....