Mi Familia

Baby carrier

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This past week, I’ve been writing a journal of the things that happen in my family daily.  Unfortunately, one of the huge things I did this week was(and still is) organizing.  As a writer on a professional level and a personal level, I have a gazillion notebooks, notepads, binders, spirals, journals, etc.  I’m really in need of a system of organizing and I am very, very on top of that.  It doesn’t look like it at the moment, but I’m totally on it.  However, my little chicas are sleeping right now, and my notebooks(most of them) are in the bedroom.  I don’t want to risk waking them, and I don’t want to try writing this tomorrow.  So I’ll just try to remember.

My oldest daughter did school about 4 days this week.  We skipped one day in the middle, I think it was either Thursday or Friday.  We woke up and did counting, tracing numbers, her first word find from a Dora the Explorer learning workbook we have!  She’s been counting to 10 really well…it seems like it took forever for her to just jump from number to number after 5 and I discovered just tonight that she can count to five in Spanish too.  We’ve been speaking a lot of Spanish this week.  We have lots of Spanish books and most of the things I let her watch are also in Spanish or bilingual.  One day she woke up and brought me her U.S. encyclopedia and we went through as much of it as we could.

As for my youngest daughter, this has honestly been a tough week.  It seems like she turned one and suddenly acts like she’s in her terrible two’s!  It is very difficult to be frustrated with her, but there are times when her goal was just to take everything in sight and destroy it somehow.  Throwing everything off the couch, off the bed, off the table… turning off the computer, scratching, biting, hitting, yelling, screaming… but also laughing, hugging, singing, mimicking, kissing and playing.  I carried her on my back a lot this week.  We went on a few walks together, just me and her.  I realize my oldest daughter had a lot more of my time when she was this age, I talked to her so much and gauged her interests really well.  With numero dos, although I talk a lot, I guess I don’t really talk specifically to her, all that much.  With my first I would always tell her what I was doing when I was changing her or feeding her…with this one, I might say one time what I’m doing, but I rarely repeat myself, except when I’m really trying to teach her a specific word.

I’m trying to teach her Spanish as well, and though it seemed like I spoke around 90% Spanish to my first daughter up until the age of 2, when I spend time trying to teach daughter numero dos, I almost always use the Spanish terms.  She doesn’t really talk much.  She makes a lot of noise, and she always has, but mostly she says “mama“, when she puts a hand puppet on she makes it talk by saying “hala, hala” and when she points at the pictures in a picture album with a little cat on the cover, she calls every picture “gato“.  She gives kisses when asked in English and Spanish.  She knows arriba and abajo.  She seems to know what I mean when I say quieres mas and similar phrases, and she definitely knows what leche means and she uses the sign.  Oddly enough, I would’ve sworn I heard her call to her sister “hermana” one afternoon. She greats her dad when he comes home or into a room with “hey da!”  Or that’s how it sounds anyway.  She also sings when I sing, “reads” when I read(we give her a few board books whenever we read to her big sister)  and dances to everything, including the blender!

As for parenthood, the Mr. and I have really had some powerful strides take place in our parenting relationship as well our personal relationship.  I was really proud when he revealed to me that he had connected to our oldest daughter in a way relating to some of his fears as a child, and that when she is fearful he realized getting upset with her only made it worse.  I’ve seen him change his parenting tactics dramatically in this past week.  I’ve also seen him change his worldview a lot.  I can tell by him opening up to ideas and ambition and excitement about our future.  He shared that he wants to travel and we talked about different places we want to go.  He also shared many times with me that he’s going to do much better with our budget next month.

In my neighborhood there’s this fun Mexican man who I see pretty often.  I don’t remember his name but he always has a smile on his face, he has a perfectly straight mustache that he calls whiskers, he has a little chihuahua dog that he carries on his bright green bike and he loves kids.  He also speaks Spanish all the time.  This guy makes me feel at home more than anyone else I see on a regular basis, outside of my family.  He always compliments my sling or baby carrier, whichever one I’m wearing.  Always talks to my girls in Spanish, and I really appreciate that.  Well this week I found that he works at the recycling center nearby, so I’m going to go taking my recycling there more often and use it as a field trip for my girls, especially as an opportunity for my oldest to practice speaking spanish to someone besides me.

So that was my week in family-ville.  My plan for next week is to post the next edition on Friday and in Spanish.  Wish me luck or say “Buenos suerte!”

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