Monday, January 6, 2014

Catching up with Samantha Pt 2

FYI:  This was written in January 2013...just a couple days after the post about her walking problems.  It has been sitting here for a year, just waiting for me to put pictures into it before hitting publish, and since she's about to have another birthday, I decided I needed to get busy! Now on to the post:

So in other news about Samantha's last 18 months...she was finally potty trained in August 2011, at the ripe old age of 3.5.  She's ahead of the game on many things, but that just was not one of them. 

We moved into our new house in October 2011, and she loved having her own room...for the first week.  Then she and Jacob both cried for each other every night for about 2 weeks before they got used to sleeping in their own rooms.  She had a tea party for her 4th  birthday and this was the first time that she got to invite more than one friend.  She LOVED it and told me that she always wanted to have a tea party for the rest of her birthdays.  Of course, she has changed her mind since then, but that doesn't matter at all. 

In February 2012, she started ballet and tap class.  She has been dancing around at least as long as we have lived in Clifton and she watched the Nutcracker over and over after Brent recorded it for her.  She would tell us to look at her doing her ballet.  So we decided it was time to let her try a class.  And she loved it!  She also made some new friends.  She had her first recital in May and looked absolutely adorable in her costume.  And the most surprising part was that my shy little girl did not act shy at all when she was on that stage.  After all the kids danced, they all went back on stage and were called to the front individually to receive their awards.  Samantha went right up to the teacher and then waved at the audience just like a little queen.  It was adorable! 

She and Jacob both took private swim lessons in June and she really was swimming on her own at the end of the week.  She would do everything she could to not take a breath until she got where she was going, but she could take a breath and keep on swimming.  I hope to have her in swim lessons again in the next month or so through the YMCA in Waco to give her a refresher before summer comes.

Shortly after she turned 3, Samantha was talking about the sounds letter makes and figuring out, on her own, what letter a word started with.  So we started working on learning to read.  She loves it and whizzes through the lessons.  We did the first pre-K workbook, skipped the second one, finished the first Kindergarten book and have made it quite a few lessons into the second Kinder book.  We don't have any kind of schedule set for when we specifically work on it, we just kind of let the mood strike, but she will do between 2 and 4 lessons in a sitting.  Since that is working, I'm not worrying about setting a schedule, at least for now.  And she is sounding out words that are far beyond the ones she is learning to read right now. 

She is also apparently a math whiz.  I was putting some things away in Jacob's room one day this past fall and she came up to me and said "Mommy, 8 plus 7 take away 2 is 13."  I had to think for a second before I could tell her that she was right.  She got that completely on her own, it is NOT something we have worked on. Oh, and add to that, I was sitting beside her as she slept when we made an emergency room trip in December, and I heard her doing math problems in her sleep.   It makes me a little afraid.

Samantha started preschool at the end of August 2012.  We decided to have her go two days a week rather than 3 or 5.  I just wasn't sure how she was going to do, and it's not like I'm anxious to have her out of the house or anything.  She was a little timid the first few days, but then she absolutely loved it.  She did great at school and had no problems there, but the afternoons were pretty rough at home for a while.  I don't know if it was because of getting used to a new schedule, because of being worn out from getting up earlier, because she has trouble adjusting to change, or if she was holding any frustration in until she got home, or a combination of the above, but I was glad when everything started getting back to normal.  She started asking to go to school every day about 6 weeks after school started, but by then, all the other spots were full, so we didn't even have to worry about trying to make that decision. 

We missed the registration week for dance in the fall and by the time we realized that it was already started, we were seeing her problems at home after school, so we decided to just let it go for a while and consider putting her back in once the spring semester started.  She didn't say anything about it until just after New Years, when she asked "When am I going to go to dance class again?"  I was glad to be able to say with a big smile, "Next week, honey."  So now she is dancing again and has moved up to the older class of 5-7 year olds.  And she comes home and teaches Jacob her ballet steps, so now he goes through the house showing us Echeppe...although from both children it seems to be separated into 2 words...A ... Shappe, and quite honestly, from watching her dance class, I thought it was two words, and two separate moves myself.

For her 5th birthday, she received a bicycle from us.  And when we went to get it, we discovered that she fit just fine on an 18 inch bike.  Yes, my barely 5 year old has an 18 inch bike!  She has only been able to ride it once so far, though, because the tube went flat at the end of her first 5 minutes of riding and we haven't remembered to get another one when we have been in Waco.  She has already discovered, though, that it is much harder to ride on a chip seal street than it is to ride on a smooth concrete floor in a store.

At 5 years old, Samantha is 43.75 inches tall and weighs 36 pounds.  Her younger brother weighs more, but she is almost 3 inches taller...for now.  She wears size 12 shoes, 5 shirts, 6 dresses and 5 or 5T pants (adjustable waist and cinched almost all the way in.)  She tells me that her best friend is Eden, and Eden is the first person she chooses to invite to anything, but she also is very good friends with Sarah, Rebekah and Jocelyn.  Emory is a new friend she met at school this year, and I think that if Emory and Samantha have anything to say about it, we will be seeing a lot more of Emory as well.  This past fall, Samantha had her first sleepovers, both with a friend staying at our house and with Samantha sleeping at a friends house.  The friend is Jocelyn in both cases, and Jocelyn spends Saturday night at our house most of the time now, then goes to church with us on Sunday morning.  The girls finally stopped counting sleepovers once we got past 5. 

She loves to dance, sing, read and play with her baby doll. She enjoys school, playing board games and playing outside with her friends. She is loving but bossy to her brother and gets quite upset when he doesn't want to follow her directions. We do have to work with her regularly on recognizing that other people don't have to do things her way.  She is usually honest when confronted, but we have had some issues lately with not always telling the truth the first time she is asked.  We are working hard on nipping that in the bud.  She is a sweet girl who is concerned about how other people feel and will try to help us feel better with hugs and kisses.  She is learning to think about how her actions make other people feel.  She is a joy to have in our life and I am so glad God chose me to be her mom!