Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Growing Up

February 2015 has brought with it below freezing temperatures, coughs and runny noses, and bubble baths.  Lots and lots of bubble baths.  Baths are instant fun, and bubbles are an added bonus.  So, that's how we spend the last part of our days.  No matter how exhausted I am, the genuine excitement over bubbles always makes me smile.  As I enter the third trimester of this pregnancy, I become more reflective; more sentimental; more nostalgic; and more excited. I've been writing down some of my thoughts since the day I found out I was pregnant with baby #4 and have a whole blog post ready to publish--I just need a picture of me pregnant!  I'm 27 weeks along and the last picture of my growing stomach was around Christmas.

When the screensaver pops up on the computer and I see pictures in the hospital after Lilly, Jack or Hannah was born, all the emotions of their birth days come flooding back.  I can't believe that I get to experience that again in 3 months.  I'm ready for another little baby in our family.  I picture (and eagerly await) the summer, when the three "older" ones get to meet and spend time getting to know their little brother or sister.  Lilly makes comments about my stomach all the time.  Last night at dinner, she said that one of her teachers asked how I was and how the baby was, and her response was, "Oh, Mom is good and the baby kicks all the time but Mom's stomach just keeps growing and it drives me crazy!"  It drives her crazy?!  I didn't know that my stomach really affected Lilly's life, but it sounds like it does more than I know.  Jack frequently asks me when "my baby" is going to come out (apparently I'm the only one who will be taking ownership for this new little person) and knows that he has to wait until the Memorial Day parade--which he associates with ice cream and now the new baby arriving.  And Hannah pushes on my stomach all the time, asking if the baby is still in there.  There are lots of little opinions in my life this time around; it's a completely different experience than being pregnant the first time.

Pretending it is summer...when it's really zero degrees outside.
As I get more pregnant and more sentimental, I feel like Lilly, Jack and Hannah grow up overnight.  Lilly told Jim and me last night that one of her best friends is getting her ears pierced for her 6th birthday and can't she PLEEEEEASE get hers pierced too?  Jim and I have already had many conversations with her about how we would like her to be a bit older before she gets her ears pierced, so we reiterated that.  And then, Jim tried a different tactic last night: "Lilly, you know they have to put needles through your ears when you pierce them, and that it will hurt?" to which Lilly responded, "I don't mind Dad.  It will barely hurt.  Really."  This from the girl who doesn't like Ursula or King Tritan in The Little Mermaid.  She is already willing to make sacrifices for beauty--and she's not even 6.  She is asking to have sleepovers and trying to make her teeth wiggle and fall out.  She asks to stay up later than the little two so that she can read.  She has started getting Hannah out of her crib in the morning, taking her to the bathroom and then bringing her into bed with her, where we often find them snuggled up with blankets and stuffed animals and books.  Jim and I are in the process of deciding what school she will attend next year for first grade. I wish, as always, that I could slow it down, but I can't.

Jack has been asking a lot of questions about why grownups get to do "whatever we want" or why grownups are "always in charge."  His running list of things that he's going to do when he is a "grownup like Dad" includes:

  • having 2 pieces of bread with his soup
  • holding his cup with one hand
  • having as much dessert as he wants
  • staying up late and watching Mighty Machines, even when it's dark out
  • watching "boys basketball" whenever he wants
  • bringing his blanket downstairs instead of having to leave it on his bed all the time
  • wearing his dinosaur pajamas every night, even if they're dirty
  • going on the train to work whenever he wants
Jack has settled into school nicely and told us at dinner last night that he loves school days because he loves painting and doing sandpaper letters and having a snack everyday and learning the French alphabet. 

Hannah is 23 months going on 13 years old.  She knows how to sigh when I've told her to do something that she doesn't want to do.  She has opinions on what clothes or shoes she would like to wear and not wear.  She knows how to run away and hide (quietly!) when I ask her to put a toy away and she doesn't want to.  Her vocabulary amazes me, when she tells me that she's "chilly" or that something is "disgusting" or that a book is "ridiculous."  She walks around the house singing the ABCs or Yellow Submarine or the Itsy Bitsy Spider or Mambo Number 5 and constantly repeats phrases she hears Lilly and Jack use.  My current favorite is "It's alright, I don't care, I'll pull down your underwear."  Right there is the difference between the first and the third child.  Lilly learned that at school, repeated it at home and now I have a 1-year old who says it, even though she has no idea what it means.  I'm pretty sure Lilly was still walking around the house singing "Twinkle Twinkle Little Star" when she was this age.  

Hannah loves my friends' babies and brings them toys and wants to hold them and feed them bottles, so I'm really hoping those feelings stick around when this baby is born.  Especially now that Hannah and I have our mornings together, I can see her baby days slipping away.  Potty training her was a piece of cake--because she wanted to do it.  I know that if I waited any longer, her strong little opinions would have taken over.  So, for a few short months, we get to be diaper free, before the teeny tiny little newborn diapers make their way back into our house.  

That is where we are this February.  Busy and chatty and changing every day.  We're eagerly awaiting spring but need about 2 feet of ice and snow to melt before our backyard becomes usable again.  So, for now, I spend my afternoons inside with 3 very opinionated little ones.  

Waiting for Dad to come home from work.

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