January and February are typically my two least favorite months of the year. Along with the post-Christmas slum that hits most years, having kids has turned those months into get-sick-and-stay-inside-for-60-days-straight months. And i dread them.
But this January and February have been an exception to what's hopefully becoming the old rule. We have had two really, really great months here at our lil' house. I think most of that is because my girls have been getting along really well--at least well for them. They definitely still have their days--and usually they take turns having "those days" but for the most part, they're playing really, really well together. I love having Grace in afternoon Kindergarten. We are all in our best moods (well, usually) in the mornings and only two mornings a week do we have to rush out of here to get Abby to preschool. So our mornings usually are a really good together time. And this whole second trimester has been pretty good to me. I've had way more energy, fewer moody days, and am sleeping better at night....not to mention i'm not lying on the couch all the time telling the girls that "mommy can't do that right now." So i think part of what's made these past couple of months so great is just that Mom is back.
Grace has been "off track" for almost 4 weeks now. And it's been wonderful. I really like having her around more, and the lazy part of me really likes not having to watch the clock and make sure we get her to school on time. But she was excited to start back up again today. She loves her friends and teacher and learning. She's doing really well at school. She's a "top reader" in her class. I don't really know what that means, but that's what her teacher told me. She's not reading chapter books, but i think she could if she wanted to. She enjoys reading to her sisters, and prefers books with pictures. Can't say i blame her.
Grace started Girl Scouts a few weeks ago...and it was just in time to sell cookies. Cookie Week was a week of mayhem, but she did great and sold 60 boxes! Granted, it was I who sent the email that resulted in most of those sales, but she overcame her shyness and delivered almost all of those boxes to the people's doorsteps. She loves being a "daisy" and i'm enjoying learning more about the world of Girl Scouts, since I never did it as a kid.
Grace and Abby both started gymnastics last month. I've been promising them for months that we'd get them started, and we finally did it. They both love it. Grace, who is insanely athletic (especially for an off-spring of mine!), is doing really well. She's really, really good at it. Abby, on the other hand, seems to take more after me :) Gymnastics is really, really good for her :)
Abby, however, is a little ballerina, and has started ballet/tap classes from this sweet lady named Miss Muffie. Abby LOVES to dance, and is quite the natural at it. She's got a little friend who goes to class with her, and she looks forward to that class all week long. A couple weeks before we signed her up Abby went through a little grumpy/whiny/sassy stage. Reid and I were at a loss as to what to do. She's never really even been disciplined much because she so rarely does anything naughty. So, we tried time-outs....but they didn't work. We tried sending her to her room, but saw no change. Finally, the day after her "trial" ballet class, I decided to take away "stars" every time she acted out. And if she lost all her stars she wouldn't be able to sign up for ballet. It worked like a charm! She only lost 7 of her 15 stars, and she's been much more Abby-esque ever since :)
Eliza loves to wear her leotard to both the gymnastics class and the ballet class. And doesn't seem to notice that she is not actually a participant at either. Which is nice, since i have no intentions of spending a dime on any classes for her. Poor third child! Grace had done tumbling AND ballet at our rec centers by age 2.5. Same with Abby. But Eliza doesn't need to know that, does she... :)
As for baby boy--he's growing every day. As is his mom. I had someone ask me the other day if i was "close to delivery." I wouldn't consider three months close, so i said no. She probably felt bad. But i think i felt worse. I feel like i am 8.5 months pregnant--at least. Bending over, going up stairs, fitting in clothes--they're all so much more difficult than they should be at 6 months. But that doesn't mean i'm at all ready for him to come out. We are at such a manageable stage of life. My girls are all so much more independent than they were last time we had a baby. All of them get themselves dressed (Eliza actually does it better than Abby, who still prefers for mom to do it...lazy thing) and they all get themselves in and out of their car seats (well, Eliza has sisters help her get out) and they all take their dishes to the sink, put their clothes in their drawers, walk with me at the grocery store (giving me much more room for the food!) and feel like KIDS rather than babies! It's such a lovely stage. And what in the world are we doing LEAVING this stage?
They're all so excited for him to join our family. Eliza hugs and kisses my belly every day. Abby, who saw the reaction that Reid and I gave Eliza when she prayed "for the baby in mommy's belly" without any prompting from us, now includes the same thing in her prayer every night--and always looks up afterward expecting the same reaction. Of course, I oblige. Grace is the most anxious for his arrival. She wants to know his name. So do I. Reid and I can't agree on a single name. Though we both know we want him to have Reid as a middle name.
Reid's firm has allowed him to do a two-month "internship" at the City Attorney's office. He's been there about 5 weeks and he is LOVING it!!! He's done 8 or 9 jury trials, and has won all but one of them. He's a natural trial lawyer. He jumped right into the whole thing and has just blown everyone away. Although his hours are a tiny bit worse at this job than his normal job (he has to leave at 7am, before the girls and i get up, but he's still home by 6 most days), he has lots less work to do in the evenings, and he LOVES what he does! And, for the first time in his career, I find myself actually interested in what he's doing :) Who knows what will come of this. Come April, he'll be back at his firm, behind a desk and computer, editing briefs and memos.
I am enjoying a relatively relaxed time in life. No overwhelming projects going on, no fund-raisers (have i even mentioned that we raised the $$ and bought the chamber for my sister!?!!?! i'm so behind!!!), no deadlines, no holidays to stress me out or make me sad. It's just been a good, healthy, wonderful start to a new year. And now spring is around the corner!! I've started my tomato seeds, my compost is all decomposed, and my tulips are starting to pop up!
Life is good.