Blake has grown so much over the course of the last year, both physically and emotionally! I have seen him gain confidence in himself in ways that wasn't there before. While we still struggle with motivation when it comes to school, he will sit and devour books in days. His handwriting is beautiful and he has improved so much in his artistic skills. He loves music and sports, especially football and basketball. In Waldorf pedagogy, 9 is a big year. It is the beginning of seperating from the dreamy land of early childhood and waking up more to the world around you. We have noticed this shift in Blake with moments of questioning authority followed up with needed reassurance through cuddling. I won't lie, some days have been difficult, but we seem to be through the toughest moments. To balance this, he has also taken on more independent chores around the house like cleaning the boys bathroom and doing his own laundry! He is still unsure of cooking, but will gladly help if I stay and supervise. I am hoping to help him build his confidence by allowing him to make some simple meals. Recently, he just picked up interest in knitting again. I taught him how to purl and he is reading a pattern on his own. His interest has always gone in spurts so we will see how long it lasts ;-)
Ah, my Parker. Wow, 5 has been rough! This is most definitely the toughest year for us. Parker was always my easy going little helper and while he still is most of the time, we also now have moments of tantrums and talking back as well a bit of sister teasing. This is new territory for me. I know there is a lot of changes going on developmentally with him (he is eating a ton and has grown over an inch in the last month, not to mention he is almost wearing the same size clothes as Jacob now) and I am trying to be the calm, patient mother he needs as we sort through this. But it is not easy! He has also shown a new interest in playing sports with the big guys. In the past, he would just do his own thing while they played, but now he has joined in. I have also noticed him being more comfortable in new situations. He is such a shy kid and would literally hang from my pockets whenever we were out, even if we were with friends we had known for years. Now, he may need me for a few minutes, but then will happily play without my presence. He is such a creative dude and always has us laughing with the things he says. I just love how his mind works. And most of the time, he plays so well with Kenna. In fact, they have quite the special bond.
Now this girl is definitely growing up way too fast! Last month, she decided she wanted to pee pee on the potty and thus began our potty learning adventure. She is doing so, so good! She is down to wearing a diaper during naps and bedtime and that's it! As long as I make time for regular potty breaks, she rarely has an accident. I was not expecting this to happen so soon. Her little personality is coming out more and more. She is very independent (and can be quite bossy!). She refuses to let me dress her or even pick her clothes out! She knows exactly what she wants to wear and there is no talking her out of it. Some days she will change outfits 3 or 4 times. She loves to read books and will bring us the same 4 books to read over and over. Her favorite books all involve animals (thats my girl!). She also loves to sing. A lot of times, I have no idea what she is singing, but she has the cutest little voice. Over the last several months, she has gone from being my shadow to playing independently or with her brothers more and more. She still loves to be my little helper, but she also will hang out with her brothers. It is so cute to see her kiss her baby one minute and then attack me with a sword the next!
We are approaching the end of Jacob's first year of formal learning. I couldn't be more proud of how much he has accomplished! He is in the beginning stages of reading (sight words and early phonics) and his handwriting is much improved. He was begging me to teach him to knit, so a few weeks ago, I finally sat down and did. I had been putting it off, debating whether he should learn to knit left-handed or right-handed. In the end, I decided I would just teach him so I would be able to help him if he needed it. I have also noticed a change in Jacob developmentally. Up until recently, we had lots of tense moments throughout our days. It was almost as if he just couldn't control his emotions and now that has seemed to pass...for the most part. He is able to stay calm and in the moments when he isn't, I am able to calm him down quicker. I look at him and see glimpses of what he will be like in a few years, as a young man. He still likes to be the center of attention and will tell "tall tales" just to entertain an audience! And he has a laugh that is so infectious and so genuine!
There are days when I look at these little people and can't believe they are mine. I am so blessed as a mother and cherish every moment I have with them!