Thursday, March 29, 2012


Since Kindergarten is a big change, at the beginning of the year my mom and dad kept me out of all of the extra stuff, like gymnastics and stuff.  But as the year went on, I did a very good job of convincing them that I was ready for things like that.  In fact, yesterday I counted and realized I'm doing four 'things'!
First, at the beginning of the year, some of the friends in my class (who mom says were 'good examples') started a Girl Scout troop.  It only meets twice a month, and it is such a good organization, that Mom gave in and let me start doing Daisy Scouts early in October.  I love it!  I love playing with my friends, I love learning about animals and doing service projects, and I love getting new patches.  Last meeting, we even earned a patch by touring a bank.  We got to see the vault and talk to each other in the drive-through, but what stood out to me the most was the cookies and punch we got to drink there (of course).  With Daisy Scouts, I also got to sell cookies.  I wanted a stuffed penguin reward so badly, but the goal for it was to sell 165 boxes of cookies.  Mom and Dad tried to explain how hard that would be, but I was unwavering.  And when the cookie money was due and the boxes all sold, Mom and Dad couldn't believe their eyes - I got 165 boxes sold and the money for it all collected!  When I want something, just try to stand in my way...

Then, at Christmas I absolutely wanted a keyboard and nothing else.  And with a keyboard came... piano lessons!  I go to piano lessons now and my teacher keeps telling Mom and Dad how impressed she is with how fast I'm picking it up.  Sometimes I love piano... like when I learn a song really well and it becomes fun to play. I was at Nana and DD's the other day and I wanted to play a song, but I didn't have my book.  So, I got some paper and played on the piano until I figured out just the right notes to play to make the song.  Voila!  Instant piano sheet!  Sometimes, I don't love piano... like when I'm first learning a song and it seems like way too much for me to figure out.  I get so upset because I want to learn the song but it's just so hard! After a few times of practicing, though, I always come around to loving it again.  If only the songs could be easy to play from the beginning...

Next, I got a letter from Katy ISD that told me I could start the Challenge program this semester.  I go one hour a week to a different classroom with some of my friends and learn about "stretching my brain".  I come home totally excited and ready to start new projects: mouse puppets or writing a script for a stage play or making up poems and songs using pictures as inspiration.  Right up my alley!

And, when my friends at school started signing up for soccer and I begged Mom and Dad to let me try it, they figured... why not?  It's only for a few months and so now I get to play on a soccer team!  Mommy signed me up and told me over and over, "We'll just give this a try.  We'll go to the first practice and then see how you like it."  But at the first practice, I was sold!  The coach calls us all "champ" and I feel like a real live athlete when he tells us what to do.  After the first practice, we got to pick a name - we picked the Green Dragons - and put our hands in a circle and yell on the count of three.  I told Mom, "I was having so much fun on the field that I forgot about everything else!"  The next week it was raining so soccer practice was optional... and only three kids showed up to play.  No surprise, but I was one of the ones who braved the weather so I could have another chance to kick the ball around.  

"Mom," I said as I crossed the street after school yesterday, "Guess what?  I figured out that I have four things!  And I think that I love them all!"  And Mom said she was glad to hear that.

Avery Four Things McClinton

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Spring Break in San Antonio

We had the best Spring Break we could possibly ask for.  We stayed at the Hyatt Hill Country and they had several family friendly activities for us to enjoy.  We also had the chance to go to Sea World, which was perfect for the age of our girls, and spend a day on the River Walk.  Amazing!

On the way home, we talked about our favorite parts.  Here they are:

*The lazy river at the Hyatt was heated!  Swim time!!!
*Touching a dolphin
*Watching the dolphin show Azul
*Watching the movie Dolphin Tale on the lawn at the Hyatt, eating popcorn, and cuddling under the stars

*Seeing Shamu
*Buying a new Shamu puppet
*Riding a mini-coaster, Shamu Express
*The "best meal ever!" - a corn dog and nachos from a hut outside the Shamu show
*Playing on the lawn in her "marrying dress" (a new costume she found at the Disney store)

*Day 1: the lazy river.... Days 2-4: being held by the pool and NOT going in the lazy river (a girl has a right to change her mind)
*Watching the dolphin show, Azul
*Being held nonstop, especially at naptimes and bedtime
*Pancakes off of the breakfast buffet one morning... yummmmm!

It was truly a wonderful week of togetherness.  We were all so thankful for the time to be relaxed as a family, to spend time with Nana and DD, and to make memories that we'll cherish for a lifetime.

Click here to see pictures

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Happy 8 Months, Reese!

Reese at 8 months:

*is B.U.S.Y.!  She is full-time crawling and is into everything.  Her favorites are the cat food, cat water, and any pieces of fuzz she can find on the ground.  She keeps us all on our toes!

*is working on teeth #s 4 and 5 - the top middle teeth.  They've cut through and we're waiting for the full toothy grin that's on its way

*is over baby food.  We can trick her into eating it sometimes, but she loves finger foods.  Favorites are pretzels, crackers, peeled and cut grapes, apples, and banana, and pastas of all kinds.  We've introduced cheese and eggs and she's fine with them but it wasn't necessarily love at first taste.

*is, amazingly, starting to get over things she loved in months past, especially her jumperoo and Gerber puffs.

*she loves her walker!  She is all over the living room in it and doesn't seem to notice that she's somewhat contained.

*has started spending time in the pack and play while we clean or cook.  She tolerates it well enough, and it saves us from digging cat food out of her cheeks every few minutes.

*HATES to be told no.  It breaks her heart and she doesn't bounce back easily.

*weighs 17 pounds 14 ounces on our at-home scale.

*has started taking her night feeding in bottle form and has accepted formula without a fight.

*is still absolutely, completely, unmistakably joy personified.

Happy 8 months, Reese!  We adore you!

Click here for pictures of the week

Thursday, March 8, 2012

DD Eggs

It was breakfast for dinner night at our house.

Mom pulled out the eggs and started to scramble them.  "Mommy!" I yelled, "Do you know how to make eggs like DD?"  This is critical stuff.  There are all sorts of eggs in the world, but I will only eat eggs made like DD's eggs.  Mom reassured me that she knows how to make eggs just like DD does.  He taught her how to make them himself.

This is good news.  DD must stay busy teaching his egg technique, and I told Mom so.  "Mommy, one time when I at Nana and DD's house, DD couldn't make breakfast so Nana made the eggs.  But DD told Nana how to make DD Eggs and so it was okay.  They tasted good, just like DD eggs."

I was feeling pretty good about the quality of my dinner on this particular night when I noticed Mommy pulling out breakfast sausages.  "Mommy!  Do you know how DD makes sausages?"

Mommy said, "No, I don't know how DD makes his sausages.  How does he make them?"

This could be trouble!  I don't know how he does it; I just know that Mommy better figure it out so my meal will be top notch.  Mom reassured me that her sausages would taste just like DD's,

When breakfast was served, Avery and I agreed that the eggs and sausage were yummy.  Avery even said, "Mommy, your eggs are even better than DD's!"

Well, I couldn't stand silently while titles were being carelessly tossed about.  I was willing to tell her they were as good as DD Eggs, but better?  We'll see about that!

"No, DD Eggs are still the best!" I said.  Mommy, somehow finding this very humorous, asked me how I knew who made the best eggs.  Oh, that's easy.  "When DD sees the eggs go off of my plate, he always gives me more."  Second and third helpings are critical, you know.

But don't feel bad for Mom.  She's reveling in the victory -she says it's been a life goal to have her eggs dubbed DD worthy.

Click here for pictures of the week

Kate Egg Aficionado McClinton

Thursday, March 1, 2012

Lessons Learned

Lessons learned this week:

1. Strep throat (aka "Strick Neck") is contagious.  -Avery
2. Washington was the first president, and he was alive a long time ago.  Like the 1970s or something. -Avery

3. Sometimes you get really special things, like going to Lockhart with Nana and DD all by yourself. - Kate
4. During scary parts of movies, it's best to hide behind your sister and snuggle in close. - Kate

5. So this is how you crawl.  See you later, suckers! - Reese
6. Sometimes, nothing is a substitute for Mommy.  Not even Gerber puffs. - Reese

7. When your husband tells you your computer is going to stop working any day now, he's right. - Mommy
8. When your computer dies, it takes a lot longer to get a blog post up. - Mommy

9. Motivation for getting a good run in is easy - leave to run to get your child from school 5 minutes later than you think you need to get there. - Daddy
10. Even though people say sleep is overrated, having healthy children who sleep through the night can be blissful. - Daddy

Click here for pictures of the week