Thursday, August 09, 2012

oh, audrie

I feel like every new stage of the girls lives is my favorite. Annie is talking nonstop and bursting forth with new personality all the time. And with her new growing vocabulary she has learned to tell us exactly how it is.

And Audrie. Oh, Audrie. I love this mess of a girl.

4 and a half is so fun with her!

I wanted to document a few of my favorite Audrie moments lately.

Today I told her she could go in the kitchen and make lunch for her and Annie. Whatever she wanted. All by herself. She was soooo excited!

We heard some rustling around and about 5 minutes later she came out with two plates of lunch for her and Annie. Each plate had: a corn tortilla, shredded cheese, tomatoes, a pickle, and one grape.

She was so proud of herself.
 We've been trying to give her more independence and show her that we trust her to do things on her own. And she just loves it.
 I took her on a day date with me the other day. We painted pottery, shared some gelato, and shopped for new shoes. Perfect date!
 We've had some really great heart-to-heart talks lately. And it's starting to feel very 'real' when I talk with her, if that makes sense. Like I don't have to sugar coat it with toddler talk and can just tell her how it is.

I had to discipline her yesterday because I discovered that she had poured out a brand new bottle of bubble bath that I had just bought for her and Annie. I was very upset and had to send her to the bathroom to wait for me (so I could cool off and also so she could have that time of waiting to find out what her punishment would be... sometimes that's enough of a scare, right?).

When I finally went in I could see she had all her sass and stubbornness ready for me. So I just knelt down in front of her and decided to keep it real. I told her softly how upset I was because I work very hard as teacher and go to work every day to make money for our family. And how daddy works very hard making lamps to make money for us. And we use that money to buy groceries and toilet paper and nice things for Audrie and Annie. And I told her firmly that she wasted our money. And we work hard for that money.

I was just starting to get in the heart of my big speech when I saw her chin start to shake and big fat tears start rolling down her cheek. She threw her arms around my neck and sobbed "I'm sorry for wasting your money, mommy." I could feel her snotty tears running down my neck. She kept saying she was so sorry. It totally broke my heart. I hugged her and told her I accepted her apology and that she would have to apologize to daddy when he got home for wasting his money, too.

It was such a sad moment, but I feel like I am getting more glimpses into her character and I like what I see. Parenting is such a tough mystery. Everyone has their own philosophies and strategies that work for them. And I feel like sometimes we're just praying that we are doing the right thing and hoping for the best.
Audrie and I have started a new tradition the past week or so when I put her to bed I crawl up on the top bunk to lay down with her and we take turns talking about whatever topic we want. Audrie really looks forward to it and we've had some interesting conversations. I love how she will say "ok, mommy, your turn- what do you want to talk about now?"

A couple nights ago she said "ok, I want to talk about why I can't stop making bad choices?". (whoa, ok). So I explained that everyone makes mistakes and how we are proud of all the good choices she makes during the day and no one is perfect. Mommy makes mistakes. Daddy makes mistakes. Everyone makes mistakes. Then she asks "What do you and daddy do when you make mistakes?" (Dang, she was not letting me off easy.) So we talked about asking for forgiveness. But I love how her mind works sometimes. Of course, the next topic was about cupcakes or princesses, I'm sure.

Last night she said "I want to talk about when am I going to be a great singer?" I told her how she IS a great singer and we love all the songs she sings and how she sings great all day long. Then Audrie said very exasperated "But mommy, I don't know all the words to Somewhere Over the Rainbow." (I had to not laugh out loud at her- but I love how her measure of a great singer is simply if you know ALL the words to Somewhere Over the Rainbow.) So precious.