Wednesday, July 24, 2013


Leilani has been wanting to do school since before Kindergarten was out, so we've been doing a light load over the summer. This week, we've started a regular work load. So far in our school, we've made a model of the Nile (the grass is growing, now!), made the Pharaoh's crowns and scepter, and written our names in Cuneiform on clay and Hieroglyphs on paper. We've read about the first nomads, wandering around and how they became farmers, how Egypt became united, and, of course, the first writing. We've learned a little bit about Egyptian myths. Leilani was quite fascinated by Set killing Osiris and Osiris coming back to life, by Isis getting pregnant off her dead husband (Osiris) and having Horus, who was born on Christmas. Actually, it's quite fascinating, because all the solar gods are born at the Winter Solstice. I find all the religious myths incredibly fascinating. (We're using The Story of the World Level 1 and the activity book that goes with it)

In science we're learning about all kinds of different animals - we started off by learning about habitat, migration, defense, camouflage, communication and conservation. From there, we briefly talked about how to know what a mammal is - if it's warm-blooded, has hair/fur, gives birth to live young (excepting the platypus) and has milk to feed it's young, it's a mammal. Leilani has been going around naming all the mammals. She, very wisely, deduced that we're mammals, since we have hair all over our bodies, are warm-blooded, give birth to live young (she has first-hand experience with this, having seen Natalia born last year) and have milk to feed our young-as she made that statement, she looked quite pointedly at me, since I was nursing Natalia at the time. I tell ya, I have one smart little girl :) We've also learned about Cheetahs, Elephants, Rhinos, Hippos and Horses.

Leilani loves her math. She'd do the entire book to the exclusion of all else if I let her.

In English, she's doing phonics, spelling, writing and language. I started off using Spelling Power, but it was a bit too advanced for her, so I found a list online. After I wrote out the list, I lost the link. But it's much better, more her level, and I think it will advance her to be abe to use Spelling Power next year. I got Hooked on Phonics, which she's loving - mainly because it's partly on the computer. We're using First Language Lessons for the Well-Trained Mind, we've learned the poem "The Caterpillar" and we're learning about nouns - common and proper. For writing we're using "The Complete Writer: Writing with Ease Level 1"'s quite simple, days 1 and 3 are copying out sentences in her best handwriting, and days 2 and 4 are narration and I write it out. This is to help her learn to write well and learn to put her own thoughts into words, that way she'll be able to put her thoughts into words, then onto paper.

We're going to be reading a good number of chapter books out loud - we finished Little House in the Big Woods on Monday and started Charlotte's Web yesterday. The girls love me reading out loud.

So far, we're loving it, having lots of fun, and most importantly - learning lots of stuff.

Sunday, May 19, 2013

School Choices

When I put Leilani in school, I knew that we'd keep evaluating how it was working for us. Each year, I plan on seeing how our choices are working and adjusting so we can keep growing, learning, and making the best choices we can.

With that in mind, I'm not sure if public school is our best choice anymore. With Leilani being, well, Leilani, I think she'll learn better with one-on-one teaching, lots of hands-on learning, and being able to do her seatwork at her own pace. She also needs lots of breaks and snacks throughout the day. She eats a very little bit at a time, so gets hungry really often. She also likes - needs - to move a lot so she can concentrate to get her work done. She can't just sit down and do it.

What I'm trying to say is, the reason I'm planning on homeschooling her for first grade is for academic reasons, to help her learn at her own pace, help her be the best she can be. There's also the issue that every state has different standards, so if she were to stay in the school system, by the time she graduated she could have many gaps because of being in different states.

I've spent months researching, reading, and studying on the subject. Picking peoples' minds to get ideas, help, and advice.

After all that time and research, I've decided to use the Classical Education model. It's very hands-on in the younger grades, incredibly comprehensive, uses real books, and by the time Leilani graduates from high school, she'll have gone through the history of the world three times. She'll also do two research papers and two thesis papers in high school. I'm going to be doing lots of lesson planning, but fortunately I find that rather fun. I got most of my books already and I've started the planning. It's probably going to be a month long process. By the time the girls graduate, they'll have a far better grasp of grammar than I do, and a better grasp of science and history. Of course, I'll be learning right along with them *smile*. I'm also going to be keeping meticulous records.

It took me a long time to come to this decision.

I looked at the Charlotte Mason method - I love that it uses real books and art studies, but I don't have the inclination to put that much time into creating a curriculum.

I looked at Sonlight, too. After the Classical Education, this was my next choice. It is, however, very cost prohibitive. What I loved about it was that it came with everything - all the books, the stuff for experiments, etc - that we would need for the entire year. And it looked like a lot of fun.

I looked at textbooks and lifepacs, but I don't like how they don't have real books, but only excerpts for the reading. It's a bit more cost-effective, true, but not as much fun. And I believe that learning ought to be fun, to foster a lifelong love of learning. It's also no where near as academically focused.

And that's my goal - I want Leilani well-educated, but I also want her to LOVE learning. To want to keep learning all her life, because it's impossible to learn everything there is to know in 12 years of school. Well, actually, it's impossible to ever learn everything there is to learn, but if you don't love learning, you won't want to keep learning, growing your mind, expanding your knowledge. And that is my goal for my girls.

And that is why I've decided on the Classical Education model - it's comprehensive, systematic and looks like it will foster a love of learning. Leilani has been begging me to homeschool her, and with all our moving - and at the most random times of the year - it seems like the best option for us right now. We'll definitely be anything but cloistered. I plan on us being involved in whatever homeschool group is near us, being involved with Girl Scouts and whatever else catches our fancy. It's going to be a fun and interesting journey, and I can't wait to see where we are at the time next year!

Sunday, March 31, 2013

Monthly Check-In: March

So I slipped a bit on the raw foods this month, but we did have color every day. Leilani had raw fruits and vegetables in every school lunch, so I was pretty good on that front. I made an outline for my book, I decided that would be a better way for me to write - keep me on track and all that. I started working out more seriously towards the middle/end of the month, trying to work out a bit more often. It helps that the weather is finally getting nice again. Hopefully I'll notice a difference in the way I look and feel soon *smiles*



Raw Foods:25

Color in Foods:31

Both girls had doctors appointments, and we got a referral to get Leilani tested for SPD, ADHD etc, I can't wait to get help so I can help Leilani. I got mastitis around the middle of the month - hot flashes followed by chills, achiness like I had the flu, (thank goodness it wasn't the flu!) - I had a nice bacterial infection, which meant antibiotics. The first day was brutal - I was so sick from the meds, it was terrible. Natalia got diarrhea thanks to the meds. Basically, there were pros and cons - it got me all better, but it left both Natalia and me a bit nauseous.

We went to the Museum of Aviation for the Women Fly! event, celebrating women in flight. They were taking girls up for flights, so Leilani got to go up (I went with her). Leilani had a blast. As we were taking off, Leilani declared that she "wasn't afraid of heights" and as soon as we leveled off, she changed her mind. I think it was more the straight, level flying that bored her, because as soon as we did some banking and a teeny "dive" she was loving it!

The next weekend was the Daddy-Daughter Candyland Ball, Leilani had a Cinderella-type dress and Jeremy wore his dress blues. Leilani had a blast and wanted to "go back there everyday!"

I got Natalia a little walker so she could start walking forward instead of sideways using the couch. She's been pretty unstoppable since.

Leilani's gotten in to Star Wars (this is one happy momma!). We've started reading the young Boba Fett series out loud and we're watching the Saga in order (minus episode one, since mine's all scratched up and won't work). Leilani's super excited about that.

Next month is Leilani's sixth birthday, and she has decided she wants her own birthday party, so on her birhtday we're going to use some Strawberry Shortcake plates and all that I found at Goodwill for $2.50 (fantastic price, right?) Then the Saturday following (which is the weekend between the girls' birthdays) I'm planning on us going to the mall and Build-a-Bear, going out to eat and just having fun.

I started my spring cleaning Easter weekend. Pulled out all the spring/summer clothes and put away (most) of the winter clothes. I had the girls try on their swimsuits - I had gotten Leilani a green, white and pink tankini last year, but she was too small for it so I wanted to see if it *finally* fit. It did! She wore it most of Easter afternoon. Natalia has a teal and pink-purple Dora one we were given. The girls LOVED being in their suits, so I filled up my big tub and let them "swim" for a bit.

We had a good Easter. Started off the day with an egg hunt (pictures to come later after I get them downloaded on to the computer) and cinnamon rolls. Then we watched Veggie Tales: An Easter Carol. For dinner I made baked sweet potatoes, green beans, a Field Roast (which is vegan) and crescent rolls. Now I have to figure out what to do with the leftovers tomorrow :). Something April Fools-y, of course :).

Happy Easter, everyone!

Thursday, March 28, 2013

Getting Leilani Screened

This process of getting Leilani screened is really difficult. I got a referral from our doctor, called the therapist to get an appointment, and they told me we need an IEP to get an appointment. The school counselor told me they need an official diagnosis before they can do anything. It's almost like a catch-22. Fortunately, the therapists receptionist gave me the number for the district special education office to start trying to get this rolling. Unfortunately, with it being so close to the end of the school year, I'm not sure how much is going to be able to be done. And then, to top it off, we're moving in around six months, so by the time anything gets started, we'll be moving.

All in all, it's getting really frustrating, but I'm going to keep plugging forward, because anything I can do to help get this moving in the right direction, I'll do.

Sunday, March 24, 2013

Post-Partum Depression

I've been suffering from Post-Partum Depression (PPD) since Natalia was born. Actually, looking back, I think it started before Natalia was born, making it Peri-Natal Depression, but that's far less known than PPD.

Every day is a struggle. Most days, if I've made dinner, done dishes, and kept the girls emotionally fulfilled (for the most part) I count it as a success.

Some days I can't even do that.

I've started using paper plates because I just can't keep up with the dishes.

I do keep the living room vacuumed because Natalia eats in the living room and is constantly dropping food on the floor, picking it up and eating it. So naturally, I want the floor to be clean.

I try to workout (and the other day had a great one!), but most of the time it's of the ten minute variety (better than nothing though, right?)

I make sure we have lots of variety in our diet, so I'm getting the nutrients I need. I add flax seed to my smoothies so I'm getting essential Omega-3's, which are supposed to help with depression.

But it just doesn't seem to be enough. I can't keep up with the housework. I can't keep up with dishes.

Then on top of it all, I have to make doctor's appointments (have you ever tried that with ZERO motivation?), get Leilani tested for Sensory Processing Disorder, make decisions about vaccinations, get Leilani to school, make her lunch, go grocery shopping - really, not that much to do, I just have ZERO motivation to do it.

But, and I count this as a success every day, I do it. I get Leilani to school. I make her lunch. I make appointments and decisions. I go grocery shopping. I make dinner (most nights). And some days, I don't do dishes because I only have so much energy and the energy I do have I decide would be better spent on my girls.

Sometimes, it feels like I'm at the bottom of a huge hole, so deep I can't see the top. I am trying. I'm going to talk to my doctor about medication, because exercise and diet aren't pulling me out. Just haveing a positive attitude just doesn't work, I can't shake this on my own. I think I have to get medication. I, as you've probably figured out, am not crazy about meds, but I know they have their place and can be very important and helpful.

I will continue, and I will defeat this. Whatever I need to do for my kids, so I can be here fully, I will do. If that means medication to give me the help I need to start up out of the hole, then that's what I'll do.

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

10 Month Photos and a Trip to the Mall

This post is a bit late, a week and a half, actually. But a couple Saturdays (the 2nd) we went to the mall, walked around a bit and Leilani found this blue dress she absolutely fell in love with. Since she has a Daddy-Daughter Candyland Dance this Saturday, she go the dress :). She's super excited. I also took Natalia's ten month photos. Oh, and we got *real* pizza, with *real* cheese. I wanted to see if Natalia was finally over the lactose-intolerance, and guess what??? She is! So we're *only* vegetarian now :)

Sunday, March 3, 2013

Behavioral Helps

I've been finding different ways to help with behavior and cleaning around the house. Here are a couple things I made this past week:

I found this on Pinterest (which is where all good ideas are found these days) and one day last week, when Natalia was *actually* playing by herself, I saved and printed the sheet, found the closest thing that looked like it would hold toys and taped it on. Then I printed up a chore sheet, cut them in to strips, made a little pocket to put them in and I think it turned out pretty great. We've only had to use it once so far. Hopefully it will help keep the house clean :).

I made this chart after seeing my SILs on her blog. She had a link to another blog with almost this exact chart. I threw it together in like 10 minutes. I've been getting a bit desperate for a visual to help Leilani see how she's behaving. She loves doing nice things now because she wants to make it up to the top "outstanding" block. Everytime she makes it to the top, she gets a "good behavior" card and after she collects ten, she gets to pick a prize. So far, she has three and we've only been doing this for three days. So, that's good.

I have a pocket folder on its way from amazon, along with some strips to write the house rules on, and I'm going to post it next to the behavior chart so Leilani has a visual reminder of the rules. Hopefully, that will help her remember and improve her behavior. I got that idea from my SIL, too. I'm stealing one last idea from her (for now, I'm sure in the future I'll steal more) and when Leilani breaks a rule, I'll have her write it as many times as she is old. Hopefully that will help her remember the rules, too. I also got a time-out rug. It's pink, has a princess crown and says "Even a Princess Needs a Time-Out". Leilani thinks it's super cute. So far, we've had to use it once.

Hopefully, all of these measures together will help. And, I'm still not yelling (yay!). We're doing lots of stuff together, cuddling, and reading.

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Monthly Check-In: February

My February check-in of my new years resolutions - I barely got any writing done, everytime I picked up something to write, Natalia interfered - she'd grab my pen or delete everything off the computer. And when she napped, I did too. She's been nursing all night and I've been exhausted. Writing has NOT been on the top of my list, consequently. Everything else I've been doing A-OK on! So, on to how I did:


Writing: 10

Color in food:28

Raw foods: 28

So, overall, not terrible, just not great on the writing. I'm slowly - ever so slowly - getting bits and pieces done here and there. The working out has been going pretty well, but I just haven't lost any weight,I've been doing lots of smoothies, which is getting me my raw foods, and making sure we have color in our food so we're getting lots of nutrients. Hopfully Natalia will start sleeping better so I can focus on writing. I've literally been so tired I can't focus, not even to read, and if you know me, you know that's saying something! I'm the one who can read, and read, and read, and that I'm not, that's just crazy!

My one-month no-yell challange went pretty well. I only yelled maybe 10 times the whole month. When I did, I caught myself, apologized, and figured out what my trigger was so I could work on eliminating it to (hopefully) prevent it in the future. One of my biggest triggers is bedtime. Leilani fights bedtime every. single. night. So, we've been working on a smoother bedtime routine, calm voices, staying in bed, and getting good sleep. I know that when I'm tired, I have more of a tendency to yell. So, it's been a good month on that front.

Now, on to March and keeping going!

Friday, February 22, 2013

Picture Post

I haven't blogged much lately - everytime I get on the computer or anything, Natalia decides to "help" by deleting everything I've written. So I'm just doing pictures here, so enjoy!

Natalia with a balloon

We made vegan rice krispie treats.

100th Day of School lunch :).

Leilani icing I you cookies

finger painting!

I helped Natalia because she just mostly wanted to try to eat the paint

Natalia mostly just covered herself in paint :)

She chose her outfit the other day.

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Yoga, Veganized Comfort Food, and Short Walks

These new yoga books are fantastic. Leilani has done two pages (a is for airplane and b is for butterfly). She does not want to do one pose a week, she wants to do a new one every day! And Natalia's been having a blast with Itsy Bitsy Yoga - yoga for newborn-24 months. She's loving the fun playtime it brings and the stretches make her feel good. I can tell, because she keeps doing them and has the happiest, most content little look on her face *smiles*. Those books were some of the best things I could have bought.

Now, on to comfort foods. I've been wanting chocolate (twix, thin mints, reese's, mac 'n cheese, cheesy potato soup, etc). So, I've been veganizing them. I found a homemade twix recipe that I'm going to work on veganizing either later this week or next week. I discovered how to make the most amazing baked mac 'n cheese, I made thin mints today (and they're amazing) and I'm going to be making the potato soup for dinner today. The bread is in the oven and the pot is in the dishwasher. I'm beyond excited. Tomorrow I'll let you know how it turned out :)

Natalia and I have been taking short (20 minute) walks around the neighborhood. Natalia LOVES sitting in the stroller (we're to the point that the Moby isn't really working anymore, she's kind of outgrown it, so I'm going to have to get the Onya carrier). Meanwhile, she's enjoying the stroller, being outdoors, seeing the trees and birds, feeling the sunlight. I'm enjoying walking around and getting some exercise, even if it's just a few minutes here and there.

So, basically, we've been having a pretty good week, and I'm looking forward to the rest of it - more walks, yoga and yummy foods.

Friday, February 1, 2013

The First of February

So today, to help me along in my no-yell challenge, I made this:

I went to Wal-Mart and found a frame on clearance, got some orange paint, glitter and ribbon. I painted the frame, glittered it up, made a bow and glued it on. Then I put some pink colored scrapbook paper and used the glass as a dry erase board and wrote "Raise your words, not voice. - It is rain that grows flowers, not thunder."

After Natalia woke up, I put her in the stroller and we went for a little walk around the neighborhood. Only about twenty minutes, but it felt great and Natalia LOVED it. My new mantra is "even a small workout is better than no workout." Sometimes I feel kind of like "why should I work out, I can only do it for a few minutes" so now, I'm just gonna do those few minutes. I also bought a baby yoga book for Natalia and a Yoga ABC coloring book for Leilani - we'll do a new move each week and she'll get to color it in, too. I'm really excited. I've been wanting to teach Leilani yoga for a while and now I think I've found a good way to do it.

I had to go get a few things for Super Bowl Sunday...we'll be going over to some friends' house and obviously we'll need some vegan options. I got some vegan burger crumbles, daiya cheddar, salsa and tofu (to make my own vegan sour cream), and I'm going to try to make a dip my brother used to make all the time. It was fantastic and I can't wait to vegan-ize it. I'm also going to try veganizing one of my favorite soups sometime next week - cheesy bacon potato soup. I made a soft cashew cheese I'm going to use in place of the cream cheese, I have smoky tempeh crumbles (in place of the bacon), and soy milk powder to make the heavy cream. Anyway, back to Super Bowl Sunday - I'm also going to make chocolate chip cookie doozers. I'm pretty excited. Tomorrow, Leilani and I will be baking up a storm :).

Tonight we made one of Leilani's favorites - tacos! I use TVP (instead of buying veggie crumbles, it's so much cheaper!) and we used crunchy shells since Leilani specifically requested them. Also, Leilani's school is doing a Read-A-Thon and Leilani needs sponsors! We're going to read 20 minutes a day for the whole month of February (since, ya know, we don't ALREADY do that - averaged out, anyway) for a total of 560 minutes for the month. She's going to read at least five of those minutes, then I'll read the remaining 15 or less. Hopefully, by the end of the month, she'll be reading most of it. That's my personal goal, anyway.

Tomorrow, it's on to baking!

The One-Month No Yell Challange

I don't know when, or even how, but somewhere along the line I turned in to a yeller. Leilani does NOT like bedtime, so puts up a huge fit. I yell. Leilani doesn't want to brush her teeth. I yell. Leilani takes toys away from Natalia. I yell. Leilani plays instead of eating. I yell.

I think you've got the picture. I yell. A lot. I'm not proud of it and I want to change. So I'm issuing myself a month long challenge. For the whole month of February, I'm going to try not to yell. And if I do, I'll apologize and move forward. I'm also going to reward myself if - no, when - I make it. I'm going to buy myself this
from babycakes NYC to make the Fat Pants Cake - brownie, covered with vanilla frosting, then crumbled cookies. Oh yeah...that ought to keep me on track, if nothing else will.

Although, really, I think the improvement in our relationship will be good. I'm tired of yelling. I'm tired of arguing. I'm tired of it all. I need a change and I'm hopeful that this will help. It's hard putting this out online, but I'm hoping that the transparency and accountability will help me. I'm hoping that all of you, my readers, will help me. Just knowing that you're reading this is making me feel more accountable already.

I'm also going to buy the materials to make this today, so I can use it as a bit of inspiration:

I got the idea for both the no-yell challenge and the framed saying above from The Orange Rhino.

Thursday, January 31, 2013

Monthly Check-In: January

Number of days I did each resolution:

Workouts: 15

Writing: 21

Color in Food: 31

Raw Foods: 31

I know I missed quite a few days of writing, but we had some major computer problems and I couldn't get the computer to do anything but turn on. The mouse pad didn't work, it took a good half hour for everything on the desktop to pull up, then after you clicked on whatever you wanted, it took another half hour for that to pull up, too. Then it didn't even work. So I printed off the pages I had and now I'm writing long hand in a notebook. We've been having lots of color in all our foods, and usually a smoothie every day (hence the raw foods *grin*).

I know I haven't blogged much, well, at all, this month, so a quick re-cap is in order - Natalia can now climb up all the stairs, she's standing for a good 10+ seconds, loves to eat, has two teeth, crawls like it's going out of style and keeps us on our toes. Leilani is reading amazingly well, is spelling lots of things phonetically (I like mome [mommy]), drawing amazing pictures (my personal favorite is of Rapunzel locked in the tower with the bad guy who locked her there, and Leilani's there with a ladder to do the rescuing instead of waiting around for a prince to come do it for her - I LOVE that!), and constantly beggin for hot lunch at school. Obviously, hot lunch isn't an option, not only does it cost about two and a half dollars a day (!), but it uses animal products. Fortunately, the school sends home the months menu at the beginning of the month, so I've started trying to make her lunch be something similar to what is being served. So far, she's loving it.

Jeremy's mom came in for a week. Leilani loved having grandma around. I have to admit, she kind of tried to use grandma - having grandma do things for her she's been doing forever. But isn't that what grandparents are for, spoiling the kids? Rachael and I did some shopping and lots of talking. Fortunately, we have the same views on diet and we both knew things the other didn't, so we expanded our knowledge :).

I'm going to finish off this post with pictures from the past month. They're all out of order, but they're there :) Enjoy!

helping Leilani do her homework while nursing Natalia

Leilani got the sharing bag again!

Leilani made dinner

in the matching aprons Rachael and Rosey made for us all.

crazy hair day at school - Leilani wanted blue hair :)

the dolls my auntie Lee got the girls for Christmas

tea party!

Leilani fell asleep on the way to the airport, so grandma kissed her while she was asleep :)

I put Natalia down for the night and went to brush my teeth and get ready for bed. When I came back, I found her like this.

eating breakfast "together" this morning

Natalia's sensory play - a ziploc bag inside another ziploc bag, filled with shaving cream and some food coloring. Natalia's been loving it.

a bit fuzzy, but you can sort of see her two bottom teeth

Sunday, January 6, 2013

Winter Break

We didn't do too much over Winter Break, I bought stuff to do crafts, but we never got the time. Leilani and Jeremy did a lot of working on the bed, I did a bit of cross-stitching, and Natalia became a fantastic crawler. There's NO stopping her now. She goes anywhere and everywhere. Watching her is a full time job!

Leilani's favorite thing is going out with Jeremy and working on the bed. Jeremy's had to work a few times the past few weeks, and as soon as he gets home, she's begging to go out and "chomp wood". The other day they were working on the hearts in the shutters. Nearly all the cutting is done, then Jeremy will assemble to make sure it all goes together as it should, disassemble, paint, then reassemble.

We've discovered a few new shows, so we're *finally* off Dora, Diego and Wonder Pets. Thank goodness. I don't think I could have stomached another episode of those. Now she watches Super Why!, My Little Pony, Pound Puppies, and her newest find - Horseland.

Natalia has stood for a few seconds at a time, and taken a few steps while holding onto the couch. I can't believe she's eight months old already! She's crawling all over the place non-stop, anything she sees that she wants, she makes it over there in seconds flat. She's also not distractable anymore - if you try to switch out something she shouldn't have for a toy, she gets awfully mad and lets you know it.

New Years Eve, I was the only one who stayed up, not by my choice, I assure you. Leilani made it to 11:45, and Natalia made it to 11:59 (that's why I was awake, she was nursing). Jeremy conked out before any of us *grin*. We had homemade vegan pizza rolls, white pizza dip, whoopie pies and fudge

I made some nuggets and hot "wings"....I made cutlets, then cubed them, breaded them, then on some of them I brushed hot sauce. I made some vegan ranch dressing to dip them in, too. It was super delish, if I do say so myself.

Jeremy flew out to go to his grandmas funeral, and the girls and I stayed home. We went to the store to get groceries, then spent the weekend hanging out at home. Movies, dishes, playing together, cuddles, it was nice and relaxing. On Friday I did laundry and Natalia throrougly enjoyed watching the clothes tumble round and round. I think it was a bit over-stimulating, but it was so adorable, her amazement at the colors whirling around, unable to touch the water she saw. She stood there for a good 5 minutes, just watching, until she got tired and plopped down onto the floor.

Leilani has a new favorite hobby - vacuuming. Since I told her no vacuuming could be donw until the living room was cleaned, she now randomly picks all of Natalia's toys up so she can vacuum.

Saturday afternoon and Sunday morning, we cuddled a LOT. As we sat on the couch, all together under a blanket, Leilani leaned over and kissed Natalia on the cheek. So Natalia leaned over with an open mouth and touched Leilani on the cheek. So the girls had this adorable little "kissing game" going. Leilani would kiss Natalia on the cheek, so Natalia would "kiss" Leilani on the cheek. Then this morning we all cuddled in bed for a good twenty minutes, playing and talking, when Natalia leaned over me to Leilani and kissed her. It was so sweet. Leilani's been pretty spectacular this weekend - we've had much less yelling and toy pulling than usual. Instead of disciplining Leilani (timeout or consequence) I just started loving on her, so she started loving on Natalia. We had a bump this afternoon, when Leilani got mad at Natalia so took away a toy and I had to explain that Natalia's only 8 months and doesn't understand, now she's just sad you took away her toy. Leilani gave the toy back and we all moved back to our happy place. We're all much happier when we just be nice to each other, obviously.

Tuesday, January 1, 2013


I'm doing something I've never done before - making some New Years Resolutions. I'm keeping it fairly simple, so I don't overload myself, and I'm putting them up here to keep myself accountable.

-I'm going to write every day, so that by the end of the year, I'll have a novel finished.

-I'm going to put more color into out diet and move towards a high-raw diet (50% or more food consumed is raw)

-I'm going to exercise three times a week (at least)

And that's it. Every month I'll let you know how I'm doing, and at the end of the year, we'll see how well I did :)