24 August 2015

Not a baby girl!

My beautiful baby girl turned four. She isn't really a baby anymore - she even told me that when I call her my baby girl: "Momma, I'm not a baby girl, I'm a big girl!" But when I asked her if I could still call her my baby girl anyway, she said yes and gave me a big hug.
In the last year, Calista has grown up, matured, and learned so much. She started pre-school one day a week last September, and did so well.
She loved going and playing with her new friends. Her teachers thought she was enthusiastic and very bright - they told me it might get us all into trouble someday if she isn't challenged. I believe it!

She also left nursery and started going to Primary at church. My little Sunbeam is full of energy and loves to give talks or say prayers. Sometimes she has difficulty sitting still or paying attention, but she's slowly getting better and her hilarity mostly makes up for it.
She has announced that she is going to marry a boy in her primary class (he agrees) and their wedding cake will be orange.

Calista is slowly learning the right way to deal with frustration and anger, and I am so proud of her for the progress she has made this last year.
It was especially apparent during the soccer season, watching her learn how to take a break to calm down rather than just have a tantrum. She still has more progress to make, but don't we all...?

Craig is one of her favorite people... most of the time. She has declared that she is a princess, and he is her prince. They are getting along really well most of the time, and it is so nice to watch them play together, and funny to find him in his crib with an apple (hmm, he can't get out, so how did it get in...?), and I love them both more than I can say.
Of course, Calista also loves when Craig is napping and we play all the games that he interferes with. Who doesn't like time away from their little brother every now and then?

One of my favorite things she does is make up silly songs and stories. Often the songs will just be narrating her current actions ("I am picking up my to-oys!") but they are funny nonetheless. Her stories mostly are about dragons, monsters, dinosaurs, or adventures (or a combination of all of them!).
Her imagination in general has exploded in the past year. She will pretend to be Calista-lion, Calista-anaconda, Calista-elephant, and more. Most of the stuffed animals she has named have been "Calista," though they are now starting to be nonsense words she makes up, like "Bah-nee-no."
Calista also loves to dance, and learns new moves all the time like "wiggle your hips, wiggle your hips." She will be taking a littler ballerinas class in the fall, and she is so excited.
She is learning how to write, and can write her name with decent consistency now. Calista can also write words if you tell her, slowly, how to spell each word in turn. She has also learned how to use scissors, to the detriment of her eyelashes and the cat's fur.

Calista often loves to help, especially when I am baking. She thinks it's fantastic to measure and pour the ingredients into the bowl, and only sometimes makes a larger mess than I would make on my own.
Sometimes she doesn't want to help, and occasionally she gets her privileges taken away for a time because she isn't listening or obeying her parents. Such is life with a 4-year-old, I think.

The vast majority of the time, I am in awe of this little girl. She is smart, sweet, loving, an amazing older sister, beautiful, strong, wonderful, and a great example to me. Calista has grown so much in the last year. I can't believe she is four already.
I am so proud of the little girl she is becoming, and while sometimes I want time to slow down, other times I am just content to "cuddle and watch videos" with my beautiful little girl.

Movies - Sleeping Beauty
Chocolate and candy
Making up stories and songs
Dinosaurs and dragons
Playing at playgrounds

Bell pepper
Knotty hair

August 2014

September 2014

October 2014

November 2014

December 2014

January 2015

February 2015

March 2015

April 2015

May 2015

June 2015

July 2015

Thank you for the last four years, my not-baby girl!

17 August 2015

To the top!

While in Oregon, we took advantage of some of the wonderful things my homeland (Calista says it's "where you belong") has to offer. Obviously, we went to the beach, but we also headed to Multnomah Falls with my brother and his family.
We've been before, as far as the bridge, 
but couldn't go any further due to ice or rockslides. This time, we went all the way.
Yes, even the 6 and 4-year-olds. I won't lie and say they did it without complaint, but they did do it, so props to them.
And us! That climb isn't terribly long, but it is fairly steep.
Of course, the view and satisfaction from the top, looking down at the waterfall, is worth it.
After we made it to the top, we stopped and had some lunch.
PB&J, yay!
We also (cautiously) let Calista and Craig look at the stream.
Somehow, I didn't want them falling in and going down a 500 foot waterfall... 
Following lunch, it was time to head back down. Much faster and also more entertaining, for me at least. I got to listen to Ivy and Calista talk about how they want to climb mountains, specifically Mount Everest, though I'm not sure they really know what that means... Ivy said at one point that Mount Everest is in Hawaii...
We also got to point out the girls the top of the waterfall, and tell them, "you hiked all the way up there!" They were proud...
And too tired to smile (or stand) for the camera once we were down.
Still, the girls fared better than the boys.
They both passed out on the hike down.

So, thanks for making all of us tired, Multnomah Falls!

14 August 2015

Four at the beach!

Months back, Calista announced what she wanted for her birthday:
  1. A purple cake (this later became amended to a purple strawberry cake)
  2. Candles
  3. Balloons
That's it. That was her list. When she had started speaking, I filled with dread, thinking her list was going to be long and demanding (and not going to happen). Instead, I told her, "I think we can do that."
So we did.
First up, the cake. Since we were at the beach, we just did a box cake mix (but homemade frosting!).
 Calista begged to help mix it up.
She did a really good job, although we (not the 4-year-old, but the adults) mixed the batter too long... and we were a little worried our food coloring additions to the strawberry cake looked grey instead of purple...
Calista's cake on the left, Ivy's cake on the right
But we knew at least the outside would be gorgeous! The inside would wait until the next day to discover...

When Calista woke up on the morning of her birthday, she came downstairs
To discover balloons for her and Ivy!
She was thrilled!
Even though she didn't ask for them, she got some presents anyway.
 I don't think she minded...
I think her favorite of the day was Princess in Black, although the dancing game and dinosaur rank pretty high, too...
And, of course since her birthday was while we were at the beach with the whole family (including her almost birthday-twin, Ivy)...
Calista got to go the the beach and spend some time in the sand and water before coming back to the beach house, changing into pajamas and...
Playing with her cousins!
And then finally, to top it all off, we had cake after dinner.
These goofballs absolutely loved the attention.
And, best of all (for Loradona and me, at least!)...
The cake turned out recognizable as purple (with to-die-for frosting)!
Before bed, we let the kiddos play around with one of Calista's birthday presents: a dancing Wii game.
The boys (and Ivy) just stared, mesmerized, Lilia tried, and Calista's actually pretty good! It was hilarious to watch them, that's for sure.

So, Calista is now four, and she got everything she asked for, and much more. In her words, this was the "best birthday ever!"
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