Four.9

As Clementine would say (we are working on editing this but she really can’t stop saying it) “OH MY GOD” how did another month pass?
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Clementine is fully into the swing of school now, and her little piano lessons (some better than others), and her math work (she seriously LOVES math) and even some readings (she is an excellent sound-er-out-er). And there’s even a bit of a love triangle going between her, Charlie, and Ashrit (a little boy that was also in her Summer Wonders camp group). All the way around, she is really thriving in school this year (her “challenging work”) and we love watching it… IF WE DARE.
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Clem has also seemed to get over a hurdle with swimming, and can now swim all the way across a big pool by herself! We’d been looking forward to this for a LONG time, and are very excited that by next summer we’ll have two very water-safe girls (vs. this summer when we had 1 girl who THOUGHT she was water safe till she’d nearly drown herself… weekly).
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Another area of growth for Clem has been on the eating front. We now pretty much give her the exact food we have and she is actually a big fan of some of our regulars, like shrimp and salmon. Her #1 favorite food is red pepper. When she and I had a Mama-Clem date night over the weekend and I told her we could both eat WHATEVER we wanted for dinner, I got good bread and cheese and dark chocolate and she had red pepper, waffles, fruit leather and cookies. Not a bad order, I say.P1380868Most of Clementine’s interests remain the same this month – she can listen to book after book, build towers for hours, and pretend to be your pet baby cheetah or decorative crab all day long. But Diane recently discovered her other favorite thing – shopping. When she had to bring Clem along to pick up a gift, she said she’d never seen a girl so entranced by clothing and jewelry. She didn’t beg for anything, but kept gently caressing items and exclaiming (till Diane was practically in tears) that everything was the most BEAUTIFUL thing she had seen. It will be interesting to see if this interest remains and grows, because I can’t say Marc or I has that bug! She would like to have her birthday party at the mall this year. How did that happen?
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Truth is, we’d let her have her birthday party on the moon if she wanted. No matter how much we try to fight it, every single member of the house (Eddie included) is tied around this little thing’s little finger for good.
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Seven.8

This amazing, smart, beautiful, talented, sweet, creative child can do no wrong.

P1380658Which is why I was particularly surprised when her teacher called me on the 8th day of 2nd grade. Apparently the teacher called the parents of NINE children that day, because together, they were being incredibly disruptive. I immediately knew the problem – after a year of being separated (by force) from her kindergarten BFF Jade, they were suddenly in the same class again, and let’s just say that popular, outspoken, center-of-attention, always pushing boundaries Jade does not bring out the best in Annabelle. Our child knows this because we’ve spoken about it with her for 2 straight years, but she insisted that this year, she was old and mature enough to have her BFF if her class and still be her best self. Needless to say, our newly-crowned wild child had a talking to.

P1370782When confronted, however, Annabelle had the best response ever – she said she got in trouble for talking when she was telling the other kids to stop talking! Whether that’s true or she was quick on her feet, I was pretty proud of that answer. We equipped her with a new response (a silent finger over her lips to tell her friends to simmer down), and she’s been getting good reports ever since. Which is great, because this kid really is one of the best I’ve ever met.  She has particularly been wonderful with the “littles” – Clem and Charlie, coming up with elaborate games and activities for them several times/week and always on the weekend:

P1380651And when she gets tired of them? She mostly reads. Still 100-200 pages/night at least, and has been devouring everything we put in front of her (a few this past month – Call of the Wild, Little Women, the Little Princess, the Secret Garden, The Penderwicks (first 2 in the series), all of the Little House books (7?), etc. But she also plays outside – and especially loved playing outside on our east coast trip – evidenced by how tan she was by the end of the summer!

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Now that school has started, Annabelle has also gotten back into her Dreambox math, and is officially doing math that is difficult for Marc and me. It makes us very curious to see if she’s gifted at math like she is at language, or if she’s just so quick she picks up whatever we give her. All we know for sure is that there are no bounds when this girl decides to go for something, and we can’t WAIT to see what she decides to go for this school year!

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