Peanut butter and jelly in my hair!

Nora likes to take her time and move at her own pace, and she shows resistance if she is pushed. She sits back and observes rather than jumping right in, and thinks deeply about everything she sees. She is very perceptive once you get her to open up about her feelings, and she’s aware of the way she is. She’ll say, “Well, I didn’t talk to the grown-ups because I’m shy and because I’m not used to them, but I did talk to some of the kids.” She calls the phenomenon of being shy in class, “not being screwed in yet.” When she gets more used to people, she says, “I’m a little more screwed in than I was before.” She likes to do everything right and often gets frustrated if that’s not possible. After a long day of pent up frustration, of being good and quiet in school, her energy is frenetic, loud (and can sometimes get aggressive toward me or Rosie when she is exhausted.) Those who know her well know she is incredibly goofy, silly, athletic, creative, imaginative, and sharp. Once she gets over the initial shyness, she makes friends very easily and is a lot of fun to be around and loves to laugh. She loves to sing (especially songs from “Moana” and “Sing”), and dance around the room. Drawing is one of the ways she relaxes, and it’s also a way for her to be precise and imaginative in something she can control. A friend of mine said she “has a poetic face,” which always stuck with me. This is the face I see when she doesn’t know anyone is looking at her, when she is thinking about life. Last night, we wrote down her worries and then threw them away, (an exercise they did in Hebrew school.) One of her worries, she said, was about wanting to wake us up after bedtime when she knows she’s supposed to stay in her bed. She’s sometimes scared when Elephanty isn’t in her bed. She is also worried that she knows how to be good, like not hitting or saying “ha ha chicken sma, stupid, poopyhead,” but sometimes, she forgets. After we threw all of her worries in the bin, I asked if she felt better. “Yeah,” she said. “But the worries aren’t actually gone. Get of my brainy, worries!” She started hitting the palm of her hand against her head. I told her that was okay, that I worried about a lot too, and that hopefully it will at least help to share them. “I think about a lot of things all the time,” she said. I told her we are a lot alike.

This has been a big summer for her—she started to read, she got more comfortable riding her bike, she did the monkey bars by herself, and she finally put her head under water. Now, she’s started Kindergarten, and while she seems to enjoy it, I’m struggling with the transition because it’s hard for me to believe that we’re done with Mommy and Me classes and that she will spend every weekday away from me. She was ready for the change I think, but I’ve always been nostalgic and though she can at times give me a hard time, I have treasured the times we spent together.

I know Rosie is only two, but I already see such different personality traits in her at this age than with Nora. She is the kid who likes to answer every question and who will chat it up with strangers. “Aren’t I wearing a preeetty jjjjress?” At story time, she stands right in front of the librarian, pointing at the book she’s reading. We went to the Farmer’s Market to see a Bossyfrog concert—(if you don’t know of him, he is all the rage)—and she took Nora’s hand and pushed her way up to the front so they were practically standing on Bossyfrog’s toes. Nora looked so uncomfortable to be up that close to him– (she used to despise anyone in costume but she is old enough to know it’s just a person in there and that it’s not cool to be afraid.) Rosie was dancing with one arm up and then the other, making a hilarious scrunched up face. At MyGym, Rosie follows all of the directions, reaching up and then bending down to touch her toes when she’s supposed to. She is so ready for school—she’s worn her empty ladybug backpack every day for the last two weeks to drop Nora off at Kindergarten, and she is thrilled to finally get to go to nursery school herself. Last night, Nora asked Rosie what she worries about and she said, “That my friends are sooooo lovable and they hug me all the time!” We all laughed and Nora asked if there was anything else. “Peanut butter and jelly in my hair!” she shouted, and again, we laughed. She is ridiculous, her new little ringlets bobbing around as she dances, the silly things she says, her funny chubby thighs. She can be very sweet, telling me, “you look very booootiful today,” and she can lash out making her meanest (but pretty hilarious) face, yelling, “Go away!” She freaks if she is not allowed to do something all by herself. She’d like to walk on the street without holding hands, buckle herself into the stroller, or open the string cheese without any help. “No! No! No! I do it all by myself!” She is very huggable and snuggly. She likes to grab my face and pull me to her saying, “let’s kiss with our lips together.”

Together, my girls are wild, sweet, sometimes too much, lovable, loving and ridiculous. Whatever Nora says or does, Rosie does too. Both girls like to say “butt daaaance!” and dance around naked after their baths. I’m really trying not to encourage this, but it is pretty funny. They play baby together—Nora is the mommy, Rosie is the baby and I am the grandma. They sing together and dance on the bandstand at the beach. In the bath, they like to put bubbles on their heads. They fight over toys and hit each other. When one falls, the other one gives her a hug and a kiss on the cheek. They make each other belly laugh more than anyone else can. They love to hide from me and Kevin, especially when we’re trying to get them to go to bed. Together they wrestle, sing, scream, laugh, ride bikes, dance, carry backpacks, and play.

There are a lot of ups and downs, and it’s not always easy but they are everything to us. 

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