2.12.2017

Abigail is Two and a Half!





Yes...









...Abigail really is every bit as full of personality as it appears in these photos.  





And all the ornery-ness and mischievous-ness also!





She keeps us on our toes all the time...and laughing all the time.



I didn't catch this until later:  She thought it would be funny to pose like this for the picture of Mama's birthday lunch out!


Abigail was mad at us about something, and decided to "clean off" the big big shelves in the girls' room





You never know what will come out of A's mouth next.  One afternoon as she and I were in the kitchen for me to grab her a banana for snack, she came out with this (I asked her to repeat it, and thankfully caught it on video):









And she would really prefer to be the one to pray at our meals.  All three. Every day.




"And Jacob come.  And Papa's house.  And LaoLao come.  And put my seatbelt on, and go to church. And different church.  And go to school.  I love you, Jesus. Amen."

We didn't catch it in this video, but it is also very common for her to include the names of all the CO cousins/Aunts/Uncles:  Aunt Brittady (Brittany), Uncle Wobet (Robert), Aunt Steph, Uncle Jerry-ed (Jared), Lexi, and Lacey, Esan (Ethan), Jacob, Esser (Esther), Ellington.



Her favorite movies right now are Zootopia and Finding Dory.  She loves to quote one of the first lines in Zootopia, when young-Judy is being all dramatic at the end of her play: "Blood, blood, blood...and death."  (Wow...that sounds horrible when I type it down, but it really is a hilarious part of the movie...and the movie is great, with amazingly well-done comparisons to current social issues.)

Her current favorite book is Sandra Boynton's Barnyard Dance.  She (and Gabriel) love to act out the moves in the book as we read it aloud to them.  It is quite a site, as the text is so funny!  Here is a small selection:

Bow to the horse
Bow to the cow
Twirl with the pig
if you know how

Bounce with the bunny
Strut with the duck
Spin with the chickens
Now cluck, cluck, cluck




Abigail can actually say all of our names fully and correctly now, which is a bit sad.  But sometimes, just to be funny, she will say our names the (incorrect) way she used to ("KK" instead of "Lily Kay", and "Woah" instead of Noah).  I think it is hilarious that she knows how funny this is, and she does it to crack us up!



Abigail loves using "chapsticks."  She applies it liberally...on AND around her whole mouth.  She would really like to use "lipsticks" too...but accepted it pretty well when I told her she could use "lipsticks" when she is 13.  Yesterday as we were all driving in the van, Elisabeth was applying some of my lipstick in the passenger seat.  Abigail got my attention and very seriously told on Elisabeth, "Mama, Elisabeth is using your lipsticks."  



Abigail currently wakes up right about 7 a.m. (if not a few minutes before).  She and G take turns being the first children up (I have to wake up all the 4 older kiddos).  She take a nap in the afternoon, which normally lasts 1.5-2 hours (but lately it is consistently closer to 1.5).   Bedtime for the younger two is about 7:30 p.m. on a normal night.  (But we have lots of non-normal nights.)



She continues to be very independent.  I don't know if that is just her personality and she would have been that way no matter the birth order, or if it has much to do with the fact that she has an older brother who is just 2y4mos older than her.   All the time we hear, "I got it!"  From getting dressed, to putting on her own diaper, to hiking....she would rather you leave her alone and let her do it herself!

I love this picture:


Wow, is the independent body-language strong in this above picture, or what?!?





And she is pretty proud of herself when she does something by herself.  Recently when she finished getting some part of her dressing done by herself, she shouted: "Good job ME!"



Abigail is currently 34.5 lb, and is ???? inches.  Depending on whether we're talking about jeans, leggings or shirts, Abigail is wearing 3, 4, and 5T sizes.  Abigail is still on the GAPS diet (as we all are), and is thriving!  People consistently mistake her for a child of 4 or 5, which is understandable.  It is not normally a big deal, I just don't want others to expect her to behave more mature because they think she is older than she really is.  (This has only happened a couple of times, and it was actually other younger kids who were making assumptions.)



She is still loving her paci, which she calls "papi."  We had an aborted attempt to wean her from it a couple weeks ago...but couldn't follow through.  Totally my fault/doing.  I am a very different mom than I was to my older kiddos, in some good ways and some bad.  I haven't figured out which is which in every situation.




We love taking walks around the neighborhood on nice afternoons, and Abigail has recently become enamored with fire hydrants (of all things).  She calls them her "friends."  She has never been exposed to them before (we didn't have them out in the country in GA!), and is making up for lost time.  When we pass them on a walk, she wants to go climb on them.



When we pass them while driving (which we do approximately every 5-10 seconds), she calls out, "A other friend!"





All three girls share a room right now (the three boys share a room also).  It is cozy for sure, but we're making it work.  We brought the big girls' bunk beds from GA, and Abigail's crib mattress, and we slip it under the bunk during the day:



At bedtime, we pull out A's mattress and place it at the end of the bunk:


She likes this arrangement just fine!



You can see in the above photo that she sleeps with quite a collection of blankets on top of her.  Closest to her (and not visible) are two fleecy/warm blankets with adorable prints: one from Lao Lao and one from Dr. Kathy.  Next is a quilt of Nai Nai's.  Then Abigail insists that we put "the pink one!"  And finally, she insists on having "the white one!"  She toggles between saying "I'm cold," "I'm warm," and "I steamy hot!" - and back and forth again - in quick succession.  At nap/bedtime she always requests a "hug and a kiss" also.  We're happy to oblige!



She is a girly-girl and is very opinionated about her clothes (she is only 2.5!), and loves when her big sis Elisabeth paints her nails....





...and dresses her up for "photo shoots":






Abigail's hair seems to have adjusted well to the drier climate of CO.  I was concerned, but it always seems moisturized enough when I take out her styles.  And her styles are usually lasting at least a week now...and one recently lasted 2.5 weeks!  WOOHOO!





I never let her leave the house without a protective style in her hair...but this is what her hair looks like when it has just had a style taken out (probably corn rows):








Abigail was holding my phone and (unbeknownst to me) took about 100 pictures while I did her hair:



Note to self: Trying keeping a nicer look on my face while concentrating on her hair!




I have been working to conquer corn-rowing on her hair.  And then when I did this style....


...it took me 4.5 hours, and I had an epiphany:  This sort of style takes MUCH longer to install, and doesn't look as nice for as long.  I need to stay away from these...until she gets older.  






We normally wash her hair every two weeks.  

Sample schedule...
Friday:  take out current style, wash/condition, band hair before she goes to sleep
Saturday: Style her hair

Next Saturday: Take out that first style and put in a new style for the second week.
following Friday: take out current style, wash/condition...repeat


I have (finally) figured out to do a style that second week that just reuses the part lines from the first week's style.

For example - Here is a style I had in her hair one week:




And then the second week I used the same part lines/sections, but did a different style: 


(Flat twists going toward the crown, into a pony tail...with "bangs" in a "twist out":)






But what I've hit on for our staple style is just boxes with ponies put into either twists....

I finally figured out that when the sections get a little loose because the rubber band is slipping some, just to add another band at the base.  It tightens the section right back up, and we can sometimes get another week(!) out of the same style...without having to restyle halfway through a two-week period!

She thinks she is so funny making faces when I want her to smile nice for a picture

...or braids:

The braids make her hair look longer than the twists do.  

And I have switched away from using barrettes at the ends, instead using beads.  Reasoning:  The beads weigh the twists/braids down more, and keep the ponies hanging  straight down (with barrettes they tend to curl up and point in crazy directions after she sleeps on them.)


I change up her part lines from one two-week segment to the next, to give her hair/scalp/part lines a rest.  Meaning, if I have straight front/back parts in for two weeks...I use diagonal part lines for the next two weeks.  







When Gabriel was younger I felt sad for him that he didn't have siblings close in age to him, like his older siblings do (There is only 8.5 mos difference between E and N, and then only 8.5 mos difference between N and D).  Two years and 4 mos seemed like a HUGE age difference between G and A.

But that gap is seeming smaller and smaller all the time.  Gabriel and Abigail are truly buddies now.  Buddies....Cohorts in crime sometimes...sparring partners occasionally.








And Rainbow-chasing partners sometimes:

Trying to jump up and grab that rainbow!





People sometimes mistake these two for twins, when they see G & A sitting beside each other  (when they stand up, he is noticeably taller).









Abigail normally calls him "Gabriel", but sometimes she calls him "Gabe", and it is so cute!  My favorite is when they are just waking up/sleepy and see each other for the first time and hug, and kiss and she will say, "I love you, Gabe."  And he responds, "I love you, Abigail."











And Lily Kay and Abigail have a really neat bond, too.



Lily Kay has always held Abigail...from the time A was an infant (when I didn't really want LK holding her).  But I don't know how much longer she is going to be able to...A is definitely going to end up taller than LK (she'll almost definitely end up taller than ALL of us!):





Noah has such a special place in his heart for this girl.  Recently, on his weekly turn for a date with me, he asked if A could come too.  How could a mama say "no" to a sweet request like that???





He sounds like a second dad with the things he says about her, "She is getting so big...it makes me sad!"
Sorry for the bad lighting, but I wanted to sneakily catch a pic of these two, when Noah was reading to her one night recently



But then, Abigail seems to have a special bond with everyone she is around.  


Uncle "Jerry-ed" ticking A

Sitting in our "neighbor's" lap at the For King and Country concert


With cousin "Esser" (I took all of them to see a dollar movie during the Christmas break)





She will NOT let you ignore her....even if she has to knock you down....



...and sit on you!

Abigail is harassing cousin Jacob here, while they're supposed to be watching cousin Ethan's football game.





We finally turned Abigail's carseat around to forward-facing.  





(Back when Elisabeth and Noah were little, the recommendations was at least 1 yr and 20 lbs. (I kept both of them rear-facing longer than that).  But now the recommendation is to keep them rear-facing for at least two years, and really for as long as possible. )

Although she hadn't complained about facing backwards (when everyone else was facing forwards), she was extremely excited about her new view when we switched her seat around! 

(Heading out after dark one night to see a church's Christmas lights display...with hot apple cider in tow.)


This girl has a big personality, big smarts and a big future ahead of her!








We are blessed to get front-row seats on what the Lord accomplishes in and through her!






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