Today is the last day of 2012. A year that has seen many accomplishments from both of you. Your mother and I are very proud of the things you’ve learned and done over the past year, and we look forward to you growing and learning more in 2013.
This past month has been filled with lots of presents, lots of Nana and Dodd, and lots of fun.
Most of this month has been spend obsessing about Christmas (of course). You both wrote letters to Santa Claus to tell him what you wanted, and when we went to visit him, both of you sat on his lap without incident. For Rachel, this wasn’t a big deal. You’ve been sitting on Santa’s lap since you were 6 months old. Emily, though…this was the first time you wanted to have anything to do with it. Every previous year, we’ve had to hold you while Rachel sat on Santa’s lap, so this is a huge step forward for you.
Rachel, you had your first performance ever this month when you sang “Feliz Navidad” for a show your after school program put on. You came home earlier in the month telling Mommy that you were going to sing “Fluffy snuffy da,” and it took her a few minutes to figure out what it was that you were saying.
Rachel, your half birthday was also this month, and as usual, we celebrated with your grandpa. I have enough trouble remembering that you’re 6, and now you’re halfway to 7. It’s hard to believe that you’re growing up so fast.
Emily, you’ve been making a lot of progress with your speaking. Your words are getting clearer and your sentences are sounding more correct. You also take your time in thinking out what it is that you want to say, and that’s wonderful to see because I can tell you really want to get it right when you say something to us or ask us a question.
Of course, in between those times when you’re both acting wonderfully, you also get on each other’s nerves or just flat out get angry. This has been especially evident since we’ve been home over the break, and moreso with Emily than with Rachel. Emily, I think you’re just out of your routine and it gets you irritated. You asked me today on our way back from the store about the order of things that were going to happen this evening, and I really think you just crave some sort of routine and knowing what is going to happen next. If things get out of order, you get upset.
The funny thing is that we know you two can get along just fine. Sometimes you play with each other for hours on end. There are times when you’ve been playing with the door closed for so long, and it’s quiet, I wonder if one of you has taken the other out. We had to spend a lot of time this past month reminding you that Santa was watching and to make sure that you were being good.
We are really looking forward to this next year. Your mother and I love you very much, and we always will. Happy New Year to both of you.
Rachel: Daddy, have you ever been to Pei-Wei?
Another month, and yet another one that I forgot to write to you.
The temperatures have finally fallen below 90, but the chill of fall is still not really in the air. We’ll get a day or two here and there, but mostly, it still feels like summer. Shorts and t-shirts are still the wardrobe of the day.
Emily, you continue to improve at identifying letters and colors, and you’re getting better and better and counting things too. Over the past couple of months, you’ve started identifying letters by the person they’re associated with in your class. Each of you has a “letter link” to help you learn your letters, and your teachers call you by that letter link too. You are “Emily Eggs.” When we’re watching Super Why or other TV shows, or just looking at books, or the magnetic letters you play with, you’ll point to a letter and say, “That’s for Alex Alligator!”
Rachel, you had a project to do on a planet for your GT class, and you decided on Uranus. We created a model of the planet, and you did a lot of reading to come up with some facts to present to your class. We practiced for several nights, and you did a great job with it. What we didn’t know when you started the project was that you would have a night when everyone in your class presented their projects to parents. It was really cool to see you talking to people you didn’t even know about your planet. You have always been extroverted, and that came in really handy when it came time for you to present. You also got another character award this past month. We are so very proud of you for getting recognized a second time by your teachers for being such an outstanding little girl.
Speaking of extroverts, Emily, you sure came out of your shell when it came time for Halloween! You’re usually the shy one, not wanting to talk to people that you already know sometimes, but on Halloween, well, there was candy at stake! You were literally running from house to house trying to be first to the door so you could get your hands on more! candy! This was also the first year that we really ventured beyond our own street (which is admittably, pretty lame). We met up with your friends from a few houses down and went trick or treating with them around the entire neighborhood. You both had so much candy that we had to empty your buckets halfway through!
Rachel, you finally finished up soccer and really came into your own over the last couple of weeks in the season. It seemed like you really enjoyed it, but we’re going to take a break from all activities during the fall just to give your mother and I a little break.
Of course, the most exciting thing that happened over the past couple of months is that Grandma and Grandpa are finally here! They came down just before Thanksgiving, and you all even helped them move into their new apartment. Your mother and I are, of course, very excited to have them here as well. Their new apartment has a playground, which you begged to play on the first day they moved in.
Christmas is right around the corner, and I know that you’ll both be good girls because Santa is watching. You Mommy and I love both of you very much.
Rachel rode the bus home from school today since I didn’t have to go to work, so we went to the store and got ingredients to make cookies. She was a great helper.
In south Texas, carving pumpkins early means bugs and bugs mean rotten pumpkins before Halloween. So we waited.
Today was the last soccer practice of the year for Rachel and Matthew. The kids (ALL of them at the same time) played against the parents. Monica had 2 goals. I sat on the sideline with my sore foot and took pictures.
Rachel helped me vote this afternoon. She chose all the correct candidates, of course