Giggles has been reading a “Dork Diaries” book in which the main character gets a job as an advice columnist for the school newspaper. So….naturally…she has made a homemade “Advice Box” and invited all of us to leave her letters with any questions we may need help with.
Here are some of the advice I received today:
Q: What’s the best way to tell someone they have bad breath?
(Well, I’d say it like this uhm excuse me, but I’d like it if you don’t stand by me. Your breath.)
Q: How do I tell if a cat likes me?
(You never really know! But I do know one thing, you have to treat it with kindness.)
Q: Why are LEGOS so popular?
(Well, I don’t know…)
Saw Geetle in black yoga pants and a striped sweater on Sunday. She looked adorable. It was not her usual ensemble and she looked like a junior teenager! Today she had on a novelty belt! Not one to hold up pants…no…one just for coolness.
Giggles has been working on big poster for her birthday party. Its very elaborate and she is running out of time to finish it. Tonight I said “hey, lets help Giggles color her birthday sign!” and was pleasantly surprised when Geetle came right over to grab a marker. It was fun coloring with both my girls.
The other day Geetle came home and told me a long story about a video her teacher showed at school. I was hilarious, she said! It was all about 2 baseball fans who are trying to talk about their favorite team but kept messing up because the players had names that were confusing like “Who,” “What,” and “Why”. Its very cool to hear her describe something she just discovered.
Lately, Pookie has been saying things that just make me stop and laugh. Its hard to explain, but they are the kind of things an 11 year old boy might say. (and that is why they make me stop and laugh. Pookie has never talked like an 11 year old boy.) He says them all with a smile and they are kind of cute when you know the Pookie back-story. The other day I was whining to BAGD about some customer service person that was not nice enough to me…and Pookie loudly exclaimed “Give it a rest Mom!” (except that he used my real first name…which made me laugh too). Yesterday we were getting ready to leave for the store and he told me “Mom, you need to hurry up!”
You know that “soft thumbs up” gesture that politicians make? The one where they thumb is flattened out slightly, rather than boldly pointing straight up? Pookie has a similar gesture that intrigues me. He points with a curved index finger. Its usually when he is asking a question and pointing to what he wants. I think he does it because he is not 100% confident in that form of communication, which makes sense for where he is on his developmental path. But he continues to make great communication strides, so I wonder if this will always be the case. I wonder if he will always be a soft pointer.
I volunteered at the school’s walk-a-thon recently. The classes walked laps around the outside of the building for 30 minutes. I saw Pookie pass my corner about 5 times. Each time, he was walking with his friend O and they were talking and goofing off. Just walking with no more or less supervision than any of the other walkers. Part of me still worries that if Pookie is given any personal freedom he will walk across the highway, just because. But, part of me knows he can handle himself in reasonable situations. Its still a hard thing for me to wrap my mind around.
Pookie was oddly fascinated with his own heartbeat tonight. He kept holding his hand over his heart, studying it saying that it was pumping blood. At first we were a little concerned because he was so intently interested in it that we were worried he was sick! He did it during dinner. He did it again while we were taking a walk around the neighborhood. We’d look over and see him, stopped in his tracks, clearly studying his own heart beat. Freaked us out! But I think it was just scientific observation.
Giggles likes it when I give her “quizzes” in the car. I used to do it for Geetle too, but she doesn’t think they are much fun any more. I usually do more of a liberal arts spin, such as “What is the name of the big statue in NYC; the one with the lady holding the torch, called?” or “How many states are in the USA?”. Lately, however, I have been thinking a lot about STEM and trying to remind myself that this is an important arena to encourage. I myself hate all things STEM, but I know that its important for Giggles and Geetle, and its something Giggles has a real interest in.
So, I have switched to Math quizzes. We fell into a pattern in which I call out an equation and then the answer is used in the next equation. Giggles calls them “Number Trains.” On the way home from the Planetarium on Sunday (another STEM activity for Giggles’ upcoming birthday!) we had some long trains going in the car. BAGD and I were shocked at how well Giggles does on these. Keep in mind that these are all done in her head, no paper.
BAGM: 2 x2
BAGM: 4 +50
BAGM: 24 divided in half
BAGM: 1/4 of 12
BAGM: 3 doubled
BAGM: 6 +3
BAGM: 9 divided by 2
Giggles: 4 and a half
BAGM: 4 and a half plus 1 and a half
BAGM: 6 plus 9
BAGM: 15 -16
BAGM: -1 +2
BAGM: 1 x 1
Sometimes she hesitates before she answers, sometimes she answers very quickly. If she pauses, she will sometimes tell us how she got the answer. Her descriptions are always interesting. She does a lot of “Well…I know 10 plus 10 is 20, so 10 plus 12 must be 2 more than that” type of reasoning. If you get to spend any time with her in person, throw her a number train and see what I mean. Its kind of fun.
On a related note, Giggles had a ball at the Planetarium. She wore her new planets t-shirt and nebula pants. She looked at all the exhibits and read many of the signs. She throws around words like “star cluster” and “Io” and “gassy planet”; she sounds like she knows what she is talking about. She insisted on visiting the displays for each planet, including poor poor Pluto (who we heard may be included as a planet again now that they changed the definition again!) She thanked us several times for bringing her and was excited when we told her that we bought a membership so that she could come back again.