24 April 2015

Year 5X in review

half a decade of smiles gone by... 
(age 0)
(age 1 & 2)
(age 3 & 4)
(age 5)

height - 109 cm (3'7")
weight - 17.6 kg (39 lbs)
shoe size - US 11 (EU 29)

favorite books: the adventures of tim, little miss/mr treasury, treasury of egyptian mythology, edward gorey books

favorite foods: cheese on nakkileipä (crisp bread), yogurt, pizza, berries, apples, pears

favorite things: baby brother, drawing, cutting with scissors, watching 'larva' (cartoon), trash pack characters, swinging, collecting rocks, watching/helping papa play the video game 'binding of isaac'

typical weekday: wake up at 7/7:30a. breakfast at home. go to daycare around 8:30/9a. back home around 3p. play outside. play inside. have dinner at 5:30p. bedtime at 8p.

1. family. she woke up on her birthday (a friday) and went immediately to her presents. lol. we watched her open things from us, the grandparents, and aunts/uncles. after daycare, her friend came over to play and then we had a family dinner of pizza from koti pizza (same dinner as she chose last year). then we had a cinnamon cake i made (she requested the same cake as i made dave for his birthday). she had a great day and so did we. thank you to everyone who sent her a gift/card, she cherished them all. we made a mistake in letting her have the package boxes sitting out for the few days before her birthday. the anticipation was worse than christmas, but she did examine them fully to learn about how to address mail and what packing slips and postage looks like. she also played with the packages as toys and carried some of them around like security blankets. we wont keep the packages out next year, but it was interesting to see her caring so much about them, just being grateful for them in general, no matter what they contained. she even called some of the people to thank them (before her birthday) for sending her something, even my grandma who had just sent a card.

(happy birthday girl with pizza. also, sporting her new favorite outfit, the cat dress)

2. friend party. this party was supposed to be the day after her birthday (a saturday afternoon), but Y woke up with a new cold and fever and i wasnt feeling my best either. it was terrible to tell her that because of us we needed to cancel her party, but we had just had pink eye going around our house and we werent sure if it was coming back or what these new sicknesses were and we didnt want to give anything to the kids. she was upset for a short while but then was fine. she was very mature about it. luckily, we were able to reschedule the party to the next wednesday, after daycare, and all of the same kids were able to come. i was so anxious leading up to party day, worried someone else would get sick and we would have to cancel it again. thankfully everything went off without a hitch. she had helped plan the party: made the decorations (it was monster and/or trash pack themed), planned the food (an assortment of her favorite snacks and treats), and decided that she wanted to have her favorite show 'larva' on at some point during the party. it was really fun organizing it with her, i look forward to it next year. her friends all came with their parents and we had a nice visit with them too. two friends were new-to-us, both from daycare. she found another boy at daycare who speaks finnish and english (his dad is nigerian) and she had two friends at the party who only spoke finnish. i could hear her switching from english to finnish throughout the party time so that she wasnt excluding her finnish-only speaking friends. there were 5 of them, including X, and it felt like it was almost too many but we managed with only a bumpy 5 minutes that was quickly smoothed over. phew! and i give her credit for being pretty decent at trying to give attention to all of them, even though she really has no practice with that kind of thing at home (at daycare, sure). also, she chose not to have 'happy birthday' sung to her this time, which helped make her much more comfortable than at parties in the past. in the end, she had a great time and im so glad.

 (party food; taste tester)
 (she decorated the house walls with colored in and original monster drawings)
(my gang of monsters. they each have a monster t-shirt on. this is a link to the art on daves shirt.)

3. message to X. wow miss, youre 5! look at you! youre so grown up, and yet, happily, i still find the same core things to be true about you since you were a newborn. 

you are genuine...as a baby, this meant that you didnt just hand out smiles to everyone you met but when you felt happy and comfortable your smile shone as bright as the sun. as a 5 year old, this means that for those you love and feel safe and comfortable around you open up and show them all of you. you still dont give out free smiles or hugs or attention, but when someone has earned your trust, the fountain of hugs and love is hard to turn off. you talk about them, think about them, draw/write stories about them and want them to know how you feel. 

you are observant...as a baby this meant that you were always watching, looking, absorbing, curious, and often slower to want to try something yourself until you had seen others do it. as a 5 year old, this means that you still prefer to be first an observer before a doer. you then seem to incorporate the doers joys and mistakes and inform yourself about how best to proceed when you do end up trying that activity out. it also means that you notice all the details in a situation and really pay attention to things that interest you.

you are focused...as a baby this meant that you liked to study things and that you could happily sit through reading a large stack of picture books. as a 5 year old, it means that when you enter your world of drawing, singing, playing that you can fully absorb and be lost to the rest of the world. i have found it remarkable how rarely you get bored. and when i do hear 'im bored' its often quickly replaced with an idea of yours that you take up and run with for quite a while. 

you are a persistent negotiator...as a baby this meant that you would not just cry if you needed something, you developed a whole range of noise expression (most on the 'high' end of the sound spectrum) that made it very clear that you were not going to be a pushover in any situation. you didnt always get your way, but you made your preferences known and you were clear and consistent about them. as a 5 year old, it means that you stand-up to the rules and challenge them. you still dont always get your way, but you are very clear and persistent about your distaste for certain rules, often trying to negotiate a compromise or change to the rule that is more pleasing to you. when those suggestions are reasonable, we have tried them. sometimes they work well for everyone, and sometimes we need to go back to our rule, but you never stop trying. you always make it known how you feel about something, and you dont back down easily.

you are sensitive...as a baby it meant that almost everything was 'too' for you. too noisy, too stimulating, too distracting, too exciting. you really preferred being in the carrier, outside, on a walk. also, your digestive tract and skin were sensitive to many foods. as a 5 year old, it means that you still have a hard time with loud or unexpected noises, you dont like tags on your clothes, and you can easily get overwhelmed. but it also means that you are very aware of how others are feeling, if you know what they are feeling you are able to sympathize, if you are uncertain what they are feeling or why, you think about it, a lot. also, you are very sensitive to smells and tastes, in a good way. you can describe things very well and are not afraid to try new foods, which increases your ability to make comparisons. 

seeing all of these attributes evolve has been fascinating, and it makes me curious to see what they will look like when you are 10 and 15 and beyond. these traits are ones that i admire, they make up a strong, dynamic person who can be emotional and caring as well as someone who stands up for themselves and is honest. i hope that along the way we are able to nourish your development of these and other traits to reach their fullest potential. im excited to see where they take you, and, as always, im glad im along for the ride. we love you. we love you. happy birthday bunny!

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