Saturday Annika went to see her first movie in a movie theater. She and I plus her friends Ryan and Madalyn and their moms headed out to see Horton Hears A Who. Annika picked out gummy bears at the concession stand and then we headed into the theater. I had explained to her that a movie theater is a big room with a giant tv and lots of people get together there to watch movies. We had to sit near the front of the theater as it was filling up but that was okay. Annika sat on my lap the whole time and did so well! She jumped a couple times when some scary-for-a-three-year-old previews came on but I think she liked the movie itself pretty well. Not once did she ask to leave, try to get up or anything.
Saturday night we went to Krystle and Pierce's house for a housewarming/engagement party. The place was packed with friends! Those two are some popular people! It was great because my whole family was there (minus Papa Merv) - Grandpa Dan, Marcia, Gramme, Auntie Krystle, Uncle Pierce and Uncle Mathias. I just love having everyone around me. The kids came with us too and they were having a good time. They both loved all the attention they were getting of course. Eventually James fell asleep in my arms with just a little bouncing in a corner. He slept there for a while until I handed him to a neighbor. Annika was tired so I took her up to Krystle and Pierce's room and she went right to sleep on their bed. James woke up not too long after Annika went to bed and he was ready to continue partying! We ended up staying until the very end of the party! And boy was it nice to be able to just walk home with James.
Monday night was Annika's first swimming lesson for this session. It was also her first time in a big pool without a life jacket or her parents nearby. I was actually pretty nervous the whole time. There were nine little kids and only two instructors in the water. There was a lifeguard on duty nearby as well and he kept a pretty close eye on the kids too but I was still nervous. Annika had a great time though. They had a little table in the water for the kids to stand on and hold on to the side. Then the instructors would take each kid out to practice kicking, floating and arm scoops. Annika got a little too comfortable in the water and would be dancing and jumping around on the table. There were a couple times when I thought for sure she was going to fall off the edge. Her teachers had to repeatedly tell her to keep one hand on the edge of the pool. At the end of the session I realized that Annika had only gone out and back with her teacher one time when all the other kids had gone three. You see Annika was in the middle of the pack and the teachers would start at each end and work their way to the middle. They would get to Annika, ask her if she'd had a turn yet, she would clam up (my shy, shy girl) and refuse to talk to them, they would assume the other had taken her out and move on to the next activity. I debated with myself for a while - do I talk to the teachers about this and be "that mom" or do I hope next week is better and just let it go. I decided to talk to the teachers because, well, I'm assuming Annika won't talk to them next week either (my really shy, shy girl) and I wanted her to get her fair share of turns. So, I talked to the teachers (one was a fill-in as one teacher couldn't get there due to the snow we were getting that night) and they apologized, I explained the whole really shy, not talking to you for a long time thing and they promised to keep an eye out next week to make sure she got her turns. Annika didn't want to leave so there was whining and lots of "No's!" so I don't think she really cared all that much that she didn't get her turns. Hopefully this Monday goes a bit better. James was a handful in the bleachers too. I may need to find some help or babysitters for him or else bring more toys for the boy.
Tuesday was dance class. It had been two weeks since her last dance class because spring break was last week. She was super excited to go again. They started their little dance number Tuesday too. I don't know yet when her in-studio recital is going to be and will make sure to let everyone know the date as soon as I do. They will be dancing to "Dig, Dig, Dig" from Snow White complete with props (shovels) and everything. It's going to be pretty cute!
Annika has quite the imagination. Last night she was having at time out (Boy, can she be mouthy sometimes! I wonder where she gets that from...Don't answer!) and at the end she told me she has a stepmother (too many Disney movies!). And her stepmother is a dragon who breathes fire! And her stepmother was going to eat her! With fire in her mouth! Then she went on to have a whole conversation with herself about this stepmother.
Tonight we went outside to play (Monday it's a blizzard out and tonight we're outside in sweatshirts - gotta love spring in Minnesota!). Annika got her bike out. She got her bike last fall for her birthday and she was pretty good at it. Today though, she was so nervous and fearful to get on, to pedal, that she was going to go down the hill, that she didn't know how to brake, etc. I'm hoping she'll warm up and be a little more relaxed about it. I think she will as by the end of the evening she was already getting a little more adventurous. And I'm not talking about zooming around the driveway or anything. By the end of the evening she wasn't doing the pedal-brake-pedal-brake-pedal-brake thing every two seconds. I made a hopscotch game for her on the driveway and I have to say that she's pretty good at that! She can hop and balance and has pretty good coordination. That's my girl!
James had a fantastic time outside too. He is such a boy sometimes! He played with the rocks, the water (from the snow melting), the dirt he found in the garage - anything he could find to get into. At one point he wanted a toy that had gone under the truck so he got down on his belly and shimmied his way under the truck to reach his toy and then shimmied back out again. His pants, shoes and socks were soaked and really dirty when we went inside for the night. He also really liked running away from me - toward the street- over and over again. No matter what I distracted him with (look a truck! sidewalk chalk! rocks! the dog! snow!) he always headed for something he wasn't supposed to do. Then he'd grin at me, put his head down and keep on running from me. Stinker! It was past James' bedtime when I finally made them go inside and boy was there tears! I promised Annika that she could play outside again tomorrow after school. I better tell Kris that! I'm so glad to have the warmer weather! I foresee lots of outdoor time in our future.
And just for the record, Annika told me "You're a genius!" tonight. I fully believe her too. Actually she was asking me when her birthday was. I told her September and she wanted to know when September was going to get here. I told her first we had Daddy's birthday then Mommy's and then September would come and it would be her birthday. Then I told her that Papa had his birthday in September too, only a few days before her birthday. She wanted to know if Papa could come to her birthday party (I assured her he could) and she was so excited! They could have two parties! And two birthdays! Then she grabbed me around the neck and exclaimed "Mom! You're a genius!" Yep, I sure am baby girl.