Friday, March 30, 2012

Playing in the Rain

Setting off on an adventure

Ronan's an experienced hand when it comes to making the most out of a rainy day but Nieve is still getting her feet wet (har har har). Last weekend Ronan took Nieve on a "rain walk", which is essentially puddle splashing, worm finding, and lots of giggling.

Up...

...and down

For Ronan the bigger the splash the better so he spent most of his time leaping in the air and coming down with a flat-footed splash. He would also dash through a puddle trying to send water as far as possible with every step.

Rain gives Ronan a great excuse to make a mess

Both kids were enamored with debris movement in the little currents. They place leaves or twigs in the water and inquisitively followed their path downstream. Ronan pointed out the little, "waterfalls!" which became Nieve's exclamation whenever she found swiftly flowing water.

An action shot of worm hunting

Nieve clearly liked splashing through the gutter and watching the waves her boots made in the water. She also liked the idea of finding things *in* the water, though Ronan was typically more successful at picking up the worms that he'd find.

Observant Nieve found the cherry blossom petals that were knocked off the tree by the rain

Nieve also built damns to change the course of the water; she was fascinated by the little eddies that formed when the water would flow by an object she put in the stream's path.

A happy girl with an umbrella

But what Nieve seemed to enjoy most was posing and playing with the little lady bug umbrella Mom had purchased for Ronan a couple of years ago. She would twirl it and pose, waiting for Mom or I to give her an approving smile. She even went so far as to offer me shelter under it when the rain started up again.

Confident Nieve posing with her prized umbrella

Eventually Ronan and Nieve's 'waterproof' clothing gave way to the constant splashing; the onset of frozen little fingers and toes marked the end of a very fun time outside. But the weather forecast for this weekend indicates that Ronan and Nieve will get another chance to test their rain walking skills again!

Saturday, March 17, 2012

A Giraffe no More

Nieve feels like a princess when her hair is properly done

Nieve's hair seems to generate enough content to have it's own blog, and that's expected as her hair seems to have a mind of it's own. After witnessing a couple of days of shameful hairdos, Nieve's teachers at school (in this case Zaira) took matters into their own hands and wrestled her mane into a beautiful French braid.

Profile shot

When I saw Nieve's 'do I couldn't believe the detail that went into it. I'm still not sure how it was done but clearly lots of skill and patience were applied, especially given Nieve is an active almost-two year old. It was beautiful and fun (very much personifying my view of Nieve); I was hesitant to undo it the next morning (if not for all of the crazy wisps that came out during her sleep, she would still be sporting the braids).


Oh the detail!

Mom had a similarly happy-stunned reaction and kept making comments like, "How did Zaira get her to sit for that? How?"

I empathize with Mom, but moreso I'm happy there is someone Nieve trusts to put her hair into beautiful, fun coiffures. Nieve seems to enjoy her fancy hairstyles at least as much as we do - that night she couldn't stop smiling at herself in the mirror.

Nieve's do is just like her - beautiful and fun

Saturday, March 10, 2012

"She's a Giraffe!"

Nieve, post wrestling match, with her style for the day

When Nieve wakes up late on school days it's recently become part of my routine to put up her hair. It's a task that I dread - it's a tough job, Nieve hates it, and I'm specifically terrible at it. Her wispy strands of hair are almost impossible to corral - as soon as you have a few captured, as many if not more pop out of place somewhere else. I feel a greater sense of progress running uphill in sand than I do when trying to get Nieve's hair inline.

Thankfully being compared to a giraffe in our family is not an insult (yet)

Yesterday morning was no exception. Nieve's thick, long, wavy hair was particularly challenging to tame and the effort, with all of the pulling and brushing, brought no shortage of tears. When it was all over, Nieve's hair was at best half-done and she looks as if she was sitting on a Van de Graaff generator.

Ronan looked past all of the unruly strands forming a soft halo around Nieve's head and exclaimed, "Dad! Look! Nieve's a giraffe!"

Sigh. Ronan had a point - in my unsuccessful effort to simply gather her hair I forgot to pay attention to where I was arranging her pigtails. I felt bad for Nieve, but given her classmates cannot say, "giraffe" yet (at least not coherently), I didn't have the patience to make her resemble a less awkward animal.

Friday, March 9, 2012

One Day, Two Naps

Our ill little boy dozing during his second nap of the day

It's been over two years since Ronan last took two naps in one day, but this afternoon he broke that streak after we returned from a visit to the doctor's office. Ronan is sick again - this time it's a not-so-fun cocktail of conjunctivitis, ear infection, nasty cold, and mid-grade fever. He's got a couple weeks worth of amoxicillin ahead of him to clear up the bugs.

I've never seen Ronan walk himself upstairs, pull his duvet up to his shoulders, and fall asleep without so much as a word of encouragement, but that is precisely what he did as soon as we walked through the front door this afternoon. Hopefully with the rest and a little medicine he'll be back to his normal napless self by the end of the weekend!

Friday, March 2, 2012

A Little Attitude Never Hurt

Nieve strikes a lovely little pose at school. Her 'do (courtesy of her teacher Kristin) is pretty cute too

We love this photo of Nieve (a camera phone snap!) - she's confident, self-appreciative, and clearly enjoying her own creativity. It was taken at her daycare, when she was showing off her balancing skills to me during pick-up. She was so proud of herself - as a parent that's one of the most rewarding responses you can see in your child.