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    The Darndest Things {04/06}

    April 3, 2006 by Brandy Vencel

    Welcome to my online baby book for the month of April!


    26 April 2006: Phonics and Reinforcing Good Behavior
    E. has read all of his Bob Books that we have on hand, and we are waiting {with great anticipation!} for the next set to arrive in the mail. In the meantime, I have been using the sounds he knows to make up sentences on the white board for him to read. He loves that I use his name in almost every sentence. This morning, he beamed with pride as he read:

    E. went to church.
    E. sat still.
    Dad thinks E. did a good job.

    Would this qualify as brainwashing? If so, I think tomorrow I will have him read:

    E. cleans the house.
    E. washes the car.
    Mom thinks E. is a good helper.



    25 April 2006: Picking out Her Clothes
    I forgot to record this last week when it happened. For a while now, little A. has been reaching into her closet when I open it and grabbing at the clothes. It has been my tradition that if she grabs something appropriate {not too dress, not to warm/cold} then I pretend she picked it out to wear. I usually say something like, “Oh, do you want to wear this?” Anyhow, last week, she reached in and grabbed a play dress and said, “Wear! Wear!” My, aren’t girls different from boys!


    22 April 2006: Milestone
    I think I’ve written about this before, but it’s still true. A. is so much more resistant to table foods than E. By his first birthday, E. was eating bananas and avacados for breakfast, beans for lunch, etc. A. ate bread. By 13-months, she at pasta and cereal. She has been resistant to everything else. Last night for dinner, I made a huge salad into which I had mixed an entire {drained} can of mandarin oranges. They were so tender they would fall apart when I touched them. I told Si that I thought she could eat them, so maybe we should try and force her and see what happens.

    Oh, did she fight and cry with that first bite! But when she finally closed her mouth, she said, “Oh!” and then went on to eat an ENTIRE BOWL! This made her brave, so she tried pears when E. had his evening snack, and then had part of a banana for breakfast this morning!

    Sometimes, they just need a little push…


    22 April 2006: Fear of the Storm
    There was lightning about last night when we put the children to bed. We knew this would be an issue for E., because he is That Age, the one where a child decides that Lightning Is Scary. But we tucked him in tight and left the room. I made sure to go and check on him about fifteen minutes later or so. He was huddled under the sheets, still wide awake.

    E.:Mommy, I’m scared of the wightning…
    Mom: I know. Just close your eyes and go to sleep.
    E.: I think I need a prayer for this…


    21 April 2006: The Big Scare
    My insides are still shaking over today’s Incident. We were at our local pharmacy picking up my thyroid medication. I have rejoiced over our new insurance many times, but there was a glitch, so I was on the phone with Si trying to work it out. E. had been pushing A. around in the cart–very gently and very carefully. I turned my back for a second. I turned back around in time to see the cart tumbling over on its side, on top of E., and A. in the basket, sliding out and bumping her head on the cold, hard floor.

    Even now, I can hear myself shriek–that mommy-shriek that has only come out of my mouth a handful of times, and over which I have absolutely no control. And I remember my words were, “E.! What did you do???” He lay there, under the cart, unblinking, as I pulled A. out of the cart basket and checked her over. She was crying, but seemed only scared, and so I turned my attention to E. and pulled the cart off of him.

    He lay very still on the floor, and that is when it dawned on me that he might be injured. I feel pricks of guilt that I had been unconcerned for him simply because it had been his fault, even though it only lasted a moment. The pharmacist came out and began to check E.’s neck when he suddenly blinked and got up.

    I think he had trouble understanding what had happened. He’s never had an accident of that magnitude before. When I was sure he was okay, I sent him to the waiting chairs to Sit and Do Nothing. He didn’t say a word the entire time. I am sure he was worried about his Impending Doom, but he also looked very sorry for what had happened, and I still don’t think he knows how it happened. It Just Did. That’s how accidents are.

    I couldn’t help but fly back in that instant to my own past and remember the little girl who had lived next door to me as a child. She had flown out of a grocery cart when it hit a tiny pothole in the grocer’s floor. She broke both of her legs and was in a body cast for what seemed like an eternity to me.

    All I could think was that it could have been us. In that moment, one or both of the children could have been seriously injured. Our whole lives could have changed in a mere second. But they didn’t. And I was reminded that it is God, and not my security measures, who protects us, holds us up, and keeps our family safe from all harm.


    Psalm 21
    I will lift up my eyes to the mountains;
    From where shall my help come?
    My help comes from the LORD,
    Who made heaven and earth.
    He will not allow your foot to slip;
    He who keeps you will not slumber.
    Behold, He who keeps Israel
    Will neither slumber nor sleep.
    The LORD is your keeper;
    The LORD is your shade on your right hand.
    The sun will not smite you by day,
    Nor the moon by night.
    The LORD will protect you from all evil;
    He will keep your soul.
    The LORD will guard your going out and your coming in
    From this time forth and forever.

    20 April 2006: A Really Cute Trick
    A. is definitely more of a ham than E., so naturally she learns more “cute tricks” than E. ever did at this age. {E. didn’t want the attention.} Anyhow, a song we have been singing during family devotions has been “Clap Your Hands,” because A. loves to clap so much. Tonight, she learned to say a baby version of “Hosanna!” and lift her hands high up over her head. It was so darling that we asked her to do it over and over again, and she, of course, complied and gave us that Miss America Smile.


    20 April 2006: Three Takes on a Growing Interest in Mathematics
    Take One…Yesterday…Cute
    E.: Dad? What’s nine plus twelve?
    Dad: Twenty-one.
    E.: {almost whispering} Wow…

    Take Two…Yesterday…Weird
    E.: Dad? What’s nine plus twelve?
    Dad: Twenty-one.
    E.: {almost whispering} Wow… …What’s ten plus eleven?
    Dad: Twenty-one.
    E.: What’s twenty plus one?
    Dad: Twenty-one {turns to look at me quizzically…and we’re both wondering why every question has the answer of twenty-one when the child hasn’t been taught much math beyond the Rule of Adding One…}

    Take Three…This morning…Really weird
    E.: Mom? What’s nineteen plus two?
    Mom: Twenty-one….{Later, Mom discusses this strange theme with Dad and agrees E. could have a future in playing blackjack}


    19 April 2006: Scripture Memorization
    Dad: Tell Mommy your verse…
    E.: “Foolishness is bound up in the heart of a child, but the rod of correction will drive a car from him.” {triumphant smile}


    18 April 2006: Turning the Other Cheek
    This morning while doing dishes, I heard E. yelling “Mom! Mom! She’s hitting me!” I must admit I wasn’t quick about running to his rescue. After all, he is so much bigger than her, my hands were wet and grimy, and he has a tendency to believe that someone is “hitting” even when they have only run into him on accident. To my surprise, when I did arrive on the scene, I witnessed A. battering her brother with repeated slaps! Time for the No Hitting 101 Class for A.! E., on the other hand, was given genuine but not overdone praise explaining how much his mommy appreciated him remembering the Turn the Other Cheek Ethic as well as the Do Not Hit Girls Rule.


    17 April 2006: What is With These Children?
    Dear Children,

    We have the strangest rules in our house, and it is all because the two of you insist on creating such strange methods of Bringing About Chaos or Introducing Unnecessary Risks. There is a new Rule starting tonight, and I hope you will understand that this is being instituted out of great concern for your general health and welfare. The new Rule is as follows: No Sleeping With a Blanket Covering Your Head and Face. Since you do not share a room, I am not sure how the both of you ended up in this manner tonight. E., you especially were bound mummy-like and I had to unwrap your sweaty head. A., I was not sure which end was up when I checked on you!

    Thank you, children, for your immediate conformity to the new Rule.

    Your Mother


    17 April 2006: That Miss America Smile
    I have always found it fascinating to observe how different siblings can be from one another. E. does not like excessive praise. I have to be careful to praise him just ever so slightly–enough to bring out a smile, but not so much that it encourages him to run away, flustered and a bit angry. But little A. is an entirely different story. Today, when she bravely tried a new food, E. clapped for her and encouraged me to do it, too. The look on her face was as if she had just been given a prize! She smiled so big, and the more we clapped, the more she smiled, to the point that little tears glistened in her eyes. I shudder at the thought of A. competing in one of those horridly immodest swimsuit competitions, but she has definitely perfected that “winning smile!”


    10 April 2006: Adding Words and a First Sentence
    Little A. had a miniature verbal explosion this past weekend. She added the words “here,” “what,” “shoes,” “birds,” “look,” and she said her first sentence, “Here’s this!” {while handing me her doll}. This was followed by a second sentence today, “What’s this?” {in regards to Daddy’s security tag hanging from his collar}.


    5 April 2006: Daughter With a Death Wish
    A. has learned to climb onto the couch. But she has absolutely no forethought. She cannot see her coming demise. Mommy sees a long fall, the poiny corner of the nearby coffee table, the hard concrete under the carpet. A. only sees Fun. Reminds me of a verse:

    `Those whom I love, I reprove and discipline…’ {Revelation 3:19}

    5 April 2006: A Delightful Whine
    There aren’t many whines that could be classified as “delightful,” but this is one of them:
    E.: Mom! I want to do more school! Pleeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeease! Please can we do more school??”


    3 April 2006: A Snack in His Pocket
    E.: Mom, I’m hungry. I need another snack. {Proceeds to reach into his pocket and then bring his hand into his mouth.}
    Mom: {Hears crunching sound and decides to investigate} E.? What is in your pocket?
    E.: {Reaches back into his pocket and pulls out a goldfish cracker}

    The ensuing conversation reveals he believes it is totally normal to carry a snack in your pocket.


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  • Reply Aunt Kristen April 19, 2006 at 5:18 pm

    Thanks, Brandy, for sharing these stories with me. I am torn because reading them makes me miss them more, but at least I am not missing out as much on their development. They are so fun! Love you E. and A.! God bless you guys!

  • Reply kristie April 4, 2006 at 12:51 pm

    Actually, it sounds like something I would do. My family still teases me about always having “crackers in my purse.” I think it started with trips to the mall and the movies (maybe during the “Note Passing stage”???). Yes, I’ve always been cheap and prone to snack. Go E.–I think it’s totally normal! =)

  • Reply Kimbrah April 4, 2006 at 3:58 am

    That is so cute. That totally sounds like something Karlos would say and do! Kids are so cute. Aren’t we blessed?

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