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New Toys

Have I mentioned before how frugal I am? (Brent says cheap; I prefer frugal) But after 5 years of using a vacuum that didn’t stand up and smelled a little bit like something was burning every time you used it, I let Brent talk me into buying a new vacuum. We got a $50 gift card to Conn’s and so took advantage of the free money and put it towards a new vacuum. Brent couldn’t wait to try out our new toy.

I’m hoping the newness doesn’t wear off too soon. I kind of liked the whole house getting vacuumed by someone else.We’ve never had a vacuum without the bag. After finishing a couple rooms, it is disgusting! But I think the whole bagless vacuum is good motivation for me. Just seeing all the dust in my carpet has made me vacuum every day this week!

Movie Night

Avery has been doing so well the past few days that Brent and I decided to organize a movie night for the evening. I know. A movie night in the middle of the week, but Brent and I decided long ago that there are no such things as weekends when you have little kids, so we might as well celebrate whenever we get a chance. Notice Avery’s Dora PJs in anticipation of the upcoming Dora movie we were about to watch. Where’s the popcorn, mom?” No movie is complete without popcorn and M&Ms. The best combination known to man.Avery ended the night by asking, “Can we have movie night again when I wake up?” I guess it was a success.

That was then…

Elliana is 17 months old this week, and Avery will be 3 in a month! Time flies.

Here are the girls 17 months ago…

And here are the girls today. I pray they’ll always be as close as they are right now. Our favorite quote is from one of their favorite books, Gossie and Gertie. We just change the names to fit our purpose =)

Avery and Elliana “are friends, best friends.”

Favorite Game

This is my favorite game the girls play. They play it almost every time they are in the car.

Avery: “Elliana can you say pippow(pillow)?”
Elliana: “pippow”

Avery: “Elliana, can you say wikkers (whiskers)?”
Elliana: “Whikkers”

The game goes on and on like this. Brent and I laugh that Elliana doesn’t stand a chance learning the correct pronunciation of anything! Its just funny to listen to Avery try to teach her words that Avery herself can’t say yet.

Friday Fun Day

Our Friday Fun day was a bit fragmented this week. We had a nail in our tire Friday morning, and because we only have 1 working car, Brent spent the morning at the tire shop getting it replaced. The afternoon was then spent at the doctor’s office listening to our sweet new baby’s heart beat. Its heart is beating at 165…any guesses on if its a boy or girl =)

So the few hours in between the tire and the doctor, we got to play with the girls as a family. It was beautiful outside so we loaded them and the stroller up and headed to Southlake Towncenter to enjoy the weather and the fun stores.We had fun walking around, playing with the train in Barnes and Nobles, and eating the best hamburgers ever at Kincaids. Avery was my Mexican food baby, Elliana was my Chinese food baby, and so far, this one looks like my American food baby because I just can’t get enough good ol red meat these days! Avery was with us all day; she just didn’t really feel like having her picture taken. She was too busy jumping and hopping and singing songs to slow down for a picture. Plus, we spent a good majority of the time in a book store. She was in heaven I think. For all the grandparents, she now has a list of about 20 books that she wants for her birthday. She requested that you all come with her to the store next time you’re in town so she can show you all the ones she likes =) She’s got her mommy’s stubborness and her daddy’s planning skills!

All in all, it was a great Friday. We got to hear our new addition’s heart beat and we got to love on our kiddos. Can’t beat that!

Sisters

This is what being sisters is all about
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Dilemma being solved?

If any of you remember the post Dilemma, you know I’ve struggled with Avery’s naps. Only a few days out of the week, but enough to affect her behavior and inconvenience the rest of us who like to make public appearances every now and again =)

So here were my steps to try and solve her little resistance to sleeping.

First: She was so tired, and I was sick of listening to her whine on the days she didn’t sleep that I tried using my authority as her parent to force her to sleep. I gave her consequences, she lost a lot of privileges and special toys, and she experienced times of isolation from the rest of the family.
Result: She started rebelling every time I put her down for a nap, not just the 2 or 3 days a week that she had been. She also started screaming in her bed as opposed to laying there quietly like she had been doing. This eventually began affecting her at night and every night Brent and I would sit and listen to her scream for 45 minutes. All in all, the sternness brought out the Avery we hadn’t seen since she was a baby!

Monday morning, after a weekend of Avery being isolated from the family because she had gotten so out of control, I sat at the kitchen table and pleaded with God to give me some direction. I knew she needed the sleep; her behavior was proof of that. But I didn’t know how to stop this downward spiral we had gotten on because when Avery feels backed into a corner, she fights. And when she starts fighting, she’ll fight to the death. I wonder where she got her stubbornness from? =) I also knew I couldn’t allow her to scream in her bed for 2 hours during nap because I had 4 other kids who needed to sleep. But at the same time, it had been such a battle that I couldn’t take her out of her room so she thought she had won because then we would have to fight the battle even longer. I was clueless about what to do! The Lord was very faithful to answer and give direction to me that Monday morning. This is what the result has been this week.

Happy and Sad faces. 3 out of 5 happy faces isn’t bad when you’re on the road to recovery =) After her first 3 smiley faces, she even earned gum from the video store! She needs 4 more to earn her rocking chair back.

Looking back, I wonder why I didn’t think of it sooner. I know Avery is a fighter. I know Avery does not respond well when she feels pressure. I know the way to her heart is through rewards and positive reinforcement. I mean we have charts and rewards things all over the house. I guess the desire and the ease of authoritarian parenting is always going to be appealing though. Its much more time consuming to tailor your parenting to the individual heart of the child. I guess its one more time that the Lord is teaching me that I definitely don’t have it all together as far as parenting goes!

Favorite Passtime

Can you guess Avery’s favorite activity?
We went to the mall to play and all she wanted to do was sit and read books.Boxes are great places to read, don’t you think?
Goldilocks and the Three Bears is currently the favorite book around here.
If you ask Avery what her favorite toy is, she’ll say books. If you ask her what she wants for her birthday, she says books (well books and light up shoes. But books usually are at the front of the line) If you ask her what she wants her birthday cake to look like, her eyes will light up and sparkle as she screams “lots and lots of books!” It will be interesting to see where this passion for books takes her.

Hurricane???

It was a rainy day today because of Ike. The girls saw that it was going to rain all day and decided they needed to play in their “boats” in order to stay dry. They had a great time pretending to ride the waves from the storm in their boats.
Notice they both remembered their babies and food and blankets for the babies while they were in the boat. Surprisingly, their boats were good entertainment for most of the morning! Fun things can happen when you’re stuck in the house in the rain =)During Elliana’s morning nap, the rain stopped for a bit so we took Avery out to ride her bike. She decided that in order to get out of her boat, she was going to need to put a life jacket on. Good thinking right? Although the rain has been great, I’m not sure the “boats” will be all that exciting by tomorrow. Maybe Ike will have moved on by then?!!

Family Fun Day

It’s Friday again, which means its Family Fun Day for the Minter family=)We spent most of the day today baking and cooking for our friends who just had a baby. We started by making some good pumpkin pie. Avery got to help stir and add ingredients for the pie filling.
Elliana just wanted to sit at her table and eat whatever mom and dad were willing to pass her way.
As soon as everyone woke up from naps, we headed to the Born’s house to take them dinner and some pie. Josh and Brent took all the girls to Grapefest before dinner to see a petting zoo while Ellie and I doted on Porter, their new baby. After dinner, we had a pretty great dance party going. Notice Avery in her ballerina outfit…she’s way into dancing and being a ballerina these days! Here is the little man himself, Porter Jacob Born. I wish I had a video of both girls loving on him. He was definitely the highlight of the evening!

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