Happy Birthday Gloria!

I can’t believe our first child turned seven this week. We celebrated both before and after camp today. In the morning we gave Gloria her gifts after breakfast, and I think we did ok since she looked at me with a big smile and said  “This was exactly what I wanted for my birthday. I don’t know how I could ever thank you enough!”

IMG_3444 Good morning birthday girl!

IMG_2963 Pancake breakfast

IMG_2978 Opening Micah’s gift of Boxcar Children

IMG_2971 And three more from Ezra

IMG_2972 Beanie Boos she expressed interest in the week before with Lauren

At camp her teachers had decorated her cubby, and then at Gloria’s request we had dinner out at Tutta Bella, home of pizza, meatballs, and gelato (who could ask for more?). Gloria seemed very happy today (and so grown up!).

IMG_2983 Pizza (and meatballs and beet salad) time!

IMG_2989Chocolate has been Gloria’s favorite Tutta Bella gelato choice for many years, often paired with a meatball and/or parmesan cheese

Bedtime Math Machine

As part of our bedtime routine, Gloria and I exchange our “favorite part of the day.” Tonight I told Gloria I was proud of how generous she is with her brothers, citing the example of when she gave most of her grape juice to Ezra tonight:

GLORIA: How full was Ezra’s glass?
ME: 3/4, or maybe more like 7/8.
GLORIA: Daddy, what’s an eighth?
ME: Half of a quarter.
GLORIA: So Ezra had 3.5 quarters.
ME: Yes! How did you determine that?
GLORIA: Well, to divide seven in half you take 3 and 3 and split the 1 in half, so then half of seven is 3 1/2, so 7/8 is 3.5 quarters.

I think it’s fair to say she gets the concept of fractions.

Such a Great Kid

Gloria’s Sunday school teacher sent us this end of year feedback on our daughter. I couldn’t be more proud of her:

Gloria is such a great kid. She is definitely the classroom cheerleader. She is the first person to say something kind to a fellow classmate, or encourage their work/answer. On one of the last few days, a fellow classmate was struggling with a project and she went and helped him immediately. It got to the point where she was helping about half the class, because her project was so much more advanced than everyone else’s and she wanted to help them catch up. It was so incredibly sweet and helpful! I have never heard a negative thing come out of her mouth. She is so warm and caring and it’s genuinely such a pleasure to see. If I decide to join in on a project that the kids are doing, she always wants me to sit with her so that we can work together. She loves helping out, and is always willing to clean up (even when it isn’t her mess). She was such a joy and a pleasure to have in class, and her constant sunny disposition was amazing!

Hug-o-war

As many of my friends and colleagues are aware, I am a huge fan of the techniques covered in How to Talk So Kids Will Listen & Listen So Kids Will Talk. It seems that Micah’s been picking up on the theory that “when kids feel good, they do good.”

This morning I witnessed Micah deftly avoid a huge blow-up with his brother. Here is the scene:

Micah has just come upstairs, and both he and Ezra want to see Lauren.

EZRA: Don’t go into mommy’s room!
[Ezra puts himself squarely in the doorway to our bedroom and glares at Micah. Micah reddens and looks like he’s about to get violent when all of a sudden he cools down and turns to Ezra with a smile.]
MICAH: Ezra, can I have a hug?
EZRA (immediately): Yeah, I love hugs!
(The boys have a big embrace.)
MICAH: Ezra, can I come with you into mommy’s room?
EZRA: Yes! Now that you gave me a hug you can come into mommy’s room. Let’s go in together!

Are You My Mother?

Ezra loves books. As can be the case with toddlers, Ezra will choose a favorite book or two to have read to him every day until he knows it through and through. Recently he’s been obsessed with Are You My Mother?

As you can see below, he’s definitely got the gist of this book. Lauren walked into the playroom in the middle of Ezra’s story time to Micah and was able to capture this delicious moment:

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Kindergarten Graduation

Wow, time flies! Today Gloria graduated Kindergarten, her self-proclaimed favorite school year ever. She took to McGilvra and her teacher Mr. S immediately and was always excited to get on the bus in the morning (or occasionally bike to school with mommy). We had beautiful weather for the graduation ceremony, along with a family lunch at Café Flora. Just like that, our little girl is now a first grader!

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Waiting on line for the processional

Gloria Kindergarten Processional
In they come

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Receiving her certificate from Mr. S

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Ello, how ya doing?

Uncle Shawnie and Aunt Amanda are returning tomorrow night after their nine month sabbatical. Micah and Gloria have been talking about it all week. We weren’t sure how much Ezra would remember his aunt and uncle as he was 14 months old when they left. But he’s clearly picked up on his elder siblings’ excitement and started saying “Shawnie” today. I captured this moment at dinner tonight, and realized just how much Ezra’s verbal skills have exploded recently. He’s echoing back all sorts of phrases, especially when his big sister “da da” is conducting.

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How Can You Make Six?

Lauren and Gloria had the following conversation on the way home from ballet today that I’m glad they shared with me:

GLORIA: Mommy, we practiced fact groups at school today.
LAUREN: What is a fact group?
GLORIA: A fact group is when we get a number and have to show all the different ways to make a number.
LAUREN: What is the fact group for six?
GLORIA: 3+3 is 6. And 2+4, and 1+5, 0+6, 5+1, and 4+2.
LAUREN: Yup.
GLORIA: There’s also 7 takeaway 1, and 8 takeaway 2.
LAUREN: Do you guys do subtraction also?
GLORIA: No, but I needed to try more ways to make six.