Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Praise and Compliments

When I was young, it was very quickly evident that I was a perfectionist.

This is not a character trait that I would wish on anyone.

I was filled with frustration and lack of satisfaction.  Often, my attempts at something went unfinished because I couldn't get it "just right", which to me meant that only perfect was acceptable.  I gave up on a lot of things - painting, piano, etc. because if it meant I had to practice, it meant that I wasn't getting it right every single time.

I read an article about how to praise your children.  What I took most from this article is that we should be complimenting them in ways that encourage the process and not the results.  For example, "Wow, Miss T, I am so proud of how hard you have practiced playing that song and now it sounds great!", instead of "Look how talented you are!".  By praising her patience and perserverence and not the end result or an abstract idea of "talent", it encourages the process and hard work.

I think Jami of "Call Me Blessed" really got it right today about the characteristics that we boast about too.  There are specific characteristics that God looks for in us.  If we start there, how can we go wrong?

But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness and self-control. Galatians 5:22-23

Let it be my charge to encourage these traits in Miss T, and to praise her for the process, not the end result.

BTW - we're linked up at Embrace the Camera, a weekly posting hosted by Emily of The Anderson Crew.  Unfortunately, Emily is rather sick in her 11th week of pregnancy and her friend Amy is hosting for her at Buggie and JellyBean.  Go Check out the other ladies embracing the camera!

Friday, May 20, 2011

Ruffle Bottom Romper

The Mr. got away with some friends for some much needed man time.

Poor guy, with me and Miss T, he's surrounded by pink all. the. time!

Anyways, since I don't know how to just sit and relax, I made good use of my time and tried out a new pattern that I recently purchased from Ms. Lizard King.  Have I mentioned how much I LOVE her patterns!!

This one was a bit of a challenge for me, but sooo worth the extra work!  Check it out:

So cute, right?  I mean how cute is this ruffle bum?
Can you just imagine how cute this would look on an adorable, blond haired, blued eyed, nearly 14 month old?  Well, you don't have to wonder anymore!

So, what do you think?  Isn't this just the cutest?

I'm thinking about offering these on my etsy shop.  Now, for a name...

Ruffle Bottom Romper

Ruffle Bum Sun Suit


OK, so I'm not the best with names, can ya help a girl out?

Monday, May 16, 2011

Thwack, Thud, Whah!

Remember the old Batman TV show?  We used to watch it on Saturday mornings - the reruns of couse.  I'm not that old!  Anyways, whenever there was a "fight" huge cartoon letters spelling out the fighting sounds would appear on the screen. 

(side note: just realizing now, that when this happened, you never actually saw Batman's fist connect with anyone. Too much violence for TV in the 70's?  Man, those were the days...)

Anyhow, these are the sounds we are hearing in and around our house lately.




When Miss T was getting ready to start walking, everyone warned me...

"Watch out, she's going to be into everything"

"She's never going to stop!"

What they failed to warn me about was the transformation into a walking disaster that she's become.  She's still only taking a few tentative steps on her own here and there, but the girl has the courage of a lion!  She has no fear in ripping her hand out of mine when we're walking down the sidewalk.  But that's when we hear "THUD.... WHAH!"

Poor little girl, if only the "other guy" looked worse!  And I'm not sure which is worse, the thud of her skull hitting the cement, the ear piercing cries, or the silence in between while you wait for the cries.  Just an FYI, the longer the silence, the louder the cry!

The other part of this is yet another layer of Mommy Guilt.  Because, of course, it's my failure to protect her and keep her from getting hurt.  And now I have a constant reminder of my failures everytime I look at this sweet face.

At least she keeps going.  The picture below is a little blurry because when I focused the camera, she was steadily holding onto the table.  Then without warning, she started charging me. I barely got the camera down before she lunged and I had to catch her!

Friday, May 13, 2011

Birthday month wrap up

My baby is 13 months old now.

Wait, what?  Wasn't her birthday just yesterday?

The birthday month flew by! Here's a "quick" recap:

Her birthday was on a Sunday, so we had a "small" gathering on Saturday.  Check out this link if you missed that story.
B picked out this party dress for T way back in September!  It fit perfectly!
There's a sneak peek in this photo of the  birthday decorations I made for T.  I'll post more later!

The next day, we had church in the afternoon and B and I dedicated Miss T to Christ, that we would raise her in a home that loves Jesus and that we would teach her how much He loves her.  She did great during the ceremony.  The highlight for some might be that she wore her white squeaker sandals and they made sooo much noise as we walked up the aisle!

Later in the brithday week, we took Miss T and her grandparents to Washington DC during the Cherry Blossom festival. We went during the week so it wasn't too crazy. We parked at Union Station and then walked the whole length of the mall. B's parent's hadn't been to DC since they were little kids. They got to experiece the Vietnam War Memorial Wall and the Korean War Monument for the first time. We got to experience a poignant reminder of how important it is for us all to remember the soldiers that sacrificed for our freedoms. We stopped by the World War II monument as well. This is one of the newer monuments and it is beautiful. I've been on a historical fiction reading kick lately, focusing on that period of time. I think it made it all the more real to me as I walked around that monument.
(BTW, if you're looking for a recommendation, pick up "Unbroken: A World War II Story of Survival, Resilience, and Redemption" by Laura Hillenbrand. True story and a page turner!)

Our last celebratory event with T's grandparents was a trip to the National Aquarium in Baltimore.  It was awesome, and Miss T loved it!  The only part she didn't like was the really loud waterfall in the Australia exhibit.  Besides that, she loved seeing the dolphins swim by, the jelly fish glow, and the turtles.  Ok, the turtles were my favorite! 

As our last birthday hurrah, T's cousin K came to visit with her parents a week later.  K just turned 2 and we planned a special trip to the Maryland Zoo in Baltimore.  B has some contacts and arranged for a personal behind the scenes tour!  We got to wake up sleepy polar bears, listen to lions roar, feed giraffes, and get pecked by penguins!

Well, I finally finished Miss T's Cherry Blossom dress, the 2011 edition! I went with a very cute pillowcase dress pattern from my favorite pattern maker Little Lizard King. Her patterns are so cute, her instructions are super clear and easy to follow, and when you're done, you have an amazing creation!

Miss T has just recently learned to kiss.  It is so sweet and she smiles so much after she gives you a kiss!
 I did end up choosing the pink and orange fabric from Studio E and a coordinating brown fabric with butterflies. It came out super cute, but I didn't get it done in time for T's birthday, so she wore it for Easter this year!

BTW - we're linked up at Embrace the Camera over on the Anderson Crew.  Go check it out!

Thursday, May 12, 2011

The Sponge

A couple of months ago, I decided hubs and I needed to clean up our mouths. 

We don't swear or anything.
We used to.

Man, I used to sound like a truck driver (sorry truck drivers!)

My dad could make the burliest truck driver crumble with his mouth and that's where I learned it from.
I remember sitting on the school bus with some friends one day back in first grade.  They were talking about how they can't raise their middle finger.  I was all "It's easy, see?  My dad does it all the time!"  I didn't realized they meant they weren't allowed to.  My bus driver didn't take so kindly to my faux pas and I was picked up by my dad in the Principal's office that day.  He told me how there are words that only mommies and daddies say and sometimes gesture.

Well, I don't want to have that conversation with Miss T.  I was to be a role model to her, so that she can be like me as much as she wants to and it's ok.  So, not that we curse or anything, but I figured, any words that I don't want coming out of her mouth - they shouldn't come out of mine either.  Even such benign words as dumb or stupid.  I would never want her to say something like that to someone and hurt their feelings.
Anyhow, so we started "cleaning up" a couple of months ago.  I figured, why wait until she is parroting us, why not prevent the issue all together.  Well, it's a good thing, because that little 13month old girl is a sponge.

Yesterday morning we were playing with her "cell phone".  It's cute, pink, and makes noise. 

She just presses the buttons and hands it to me.  Yesterday, I pretended that I answered a call and had a little conversation.  When I got home, hubs was so excited to show me Miss T's new trick.  He had been playing with her phone in a similar way that day too.  He would ring her phone and she would hold it up to her ear just like I did that morning!  Yep, she's a quick study, that one!

Hmm, I think I may need to be a little more careful in the car from now on... :)

Don't you love how she freezes when she notices the video camera? silly girl!