This past week we realized it was time for Catherine to drop her pacifier. Though Catherine really only gets it during road trips and in the crib, I've been putting this off for too long even though she's shown a few times she could fall asleep without it. One afternoon, someone came in and "broke" all the pacifiers in the house by clipping off the tips. Catherine was none too pleased about this and I spent much of the first night and next afternoon in her room rocking and holding:
Luckily she has become attached to this ridiculous dog from Uncle Matt :-) Uncle Matt picked it out because it was cute and later found out it was "Boo, the Cutest Dog in the World" according to YouTube. Catherine's pretty territorial about Boo but he definitely helped the no pacifier transition. After a rough 24 hours or so she adapted quickly and now gets Boo and book and she's (most of the time) ready to sleep. She still needs rocked sometimes, but considering how quickly she's growing, that's okay by me.
Boo, also went to Yellowstone with us, which of course meant that Matthew decided he needed to bring Ellie, which then meant we spent the entire drive there listening to "Here Catherine, you can have Ellie, give me Boo." Of course, that also meant James spent a lot of time retrieving animals from between the two back seats that didn't quite make the trade. However, Boo is far easier to find than a flung pacifier.
And we owe Uncle Matt doubly because he also got Catherine the seahorse that has become integral to the bedtime/nap routine. It plays a series of "soft classical lullabies" if you want to stretch the definition of some of those words, including Pachbel's Canon. After a few rounds it feels like you are waiting for the world's latest wedding to start, but it works so it got to go to Yellowstone too.
Speaking of growing up, she got herself ready to go the other morning :-) Luckily Catherine rarely *knock on wood* loses mittens when we are out and about but her current fashion stylings sometimes mean that single boots and mittens travel far throughout the house.
We've been quite busy out and about with friends and while I have lots of great pictures of the kids' friends, I have very few of mine because they have been stuck to my legs it seems. Both are going through a clingy, shy phase, but I'm glad a friend at least got this one of us from lunch the other day:
Meanwhile around the house the kids continue to test the boundaries of the sibling relationship. Here is Catherine doing her "sassy" walk where she puts her hands behind her (to balance out the toddler lead-with-tummy walk?) and stomps around giggling and following Matthew:
These wild antics have become an integral part of our bedtime routine, if only because it's fun for James and I to watch!
Though sometimes their running around and making noise time looks like this when hats are added:
Then of course, there are the big hugs the kiddos insist on giving each other before naps and bed:
But everyone's favorite part is always story time:
Including Matthew who has started "reading along" as we say the words and reading (memorizing/using context clues to read) quite a few stories on his own:
Matthew's still enamored with his snowshoes so we try and make it outside every day. When Catherine puts her hat on she always starts to do this, possibly because Matthew has convinced her she's a "flower monster":
Catherine's still hit or miss about the whole experience. She loves eating the snow:
One of the key benefits of these awesome hats from Teta Sharon (aside from their cuteness) is the large fleece neck collects all the snow that they don't end up eating and keeps it from going down their shirts/jackets. Win-win!