Rhianwen's Age Tracker

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Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Rhianwen is 5!

5. Why does this age seem like a milestone, a doorway into maturity? During our celebrations of our little girl, I occasionally found it difficult to hold back some tears. I think about the years I've spent with her, the time I've wasted trying to accomplish too much and interacting with her too little, the way my memories of each year seem to fade with the passage of time, and how this little girl is inevitably leaving home. She's not yet in kindergarten because of her late birthday, but even so, I can feel her slipping away and me wondering, do I really know her? I think parenthood has given me a whole new understanding of the word bittersweet. Our girl is so headstrong. Not necessarily independent. She sets her mind on a thing, and it has to be that way. It could mean that she won't do something without help or it could mean that she'd rather not do a thing at all if you are going to help. She loves companionship and wants Alden to play in her world all of the time. I am so thankful for their unity and love for each other and for their imaginative forays. People always are saying to me, "She must be a big help." And I'm always wondering how to respond. I finally figured out that she CAN be a big help, but that she reminds me of Anne of Green Gables because Rhianwen is often in her own world so much that she doesn't think of what is helpful, or if she does, she only does part of it. She'd much rather be doing her own thing than being a little mommy's helper. I'm thankful for her sweet spirit, how she includes everyone she meets in her circle, how she freely gives smiles and hugs even to strangers, how she speaks to anyone, how she asks so many questions and comes to amazing conclusions that I think should be beyond her, how she draws prolifically, how she weaves stories, and how she is so confident that she is beautiful and that everyone around her is too.

Getting her birthday song in bed.

Corwin so happy to be a part of the celebrations.

Wilbur the Pig from Corwin. She loves pretending to be Fern.

Gracing Corwin with an affectionate kiss.

A bike!

Going on a daddy date. I guess she's stoked. We do daddy dates the 4th of every month (corresponding with her birthday date). It's been a wonderful thing for them. I encourage all daddies to do this with their girls. Poor Alden gets pretty upset that he can't go, maybe we'll start something on the 20th for him.

Riding the train at the museum.

She doesn't want to try riding without training wheels even though she can do the balance bike. She's much more into riding now that Wally rides with her on the road. She can go pretty fast.

For her party we were crazy enough to do a Candy Land theme.

The cake. It was actually one of the easiest ones I've made b/c all of the decorations just have to be stuck on. There was very little shaping and cutting that I had to do.

My mom dressed up like Gramma Nut. She looked perfect. I told her on Facebook that it was a fitting role for her...ha ha! She even glued peanuts on her necklace!

My dad was quite intimidating to the kids, but I didn't even think of it b/c it was hilarious to me!

Princess Lolly.

We started out coloring pictures of Candy Land characters, then Gramma Nut read If I Owned a Chocolate Factory, then we played a life-sized version of Candy Land. It was so fun! We just had all of the kids play as a group. Otherwise, it would have taken until Rhianwen was 6 for any one person to win! For more pictures of each place, you can go to our renovation tracker.

Getting a little too close for comfort to Lord Licorice.

Candy is a pretty powerful motivator.

Getting peanuts from Gramma Nut.

Princess Lolly in Lollipop Woods.

Treasure at Candy Castle. Anybody want to come trick-or-treating at our house?...please?

With my very own sweetheart (I was Princess Frostine...thanks, Christy for the dress :) ooooh, 12 years, has it been?).

We used the Candy Land land to do a treasure hunt as well. Don't you love how Alden and his little friend peel off from the group and roll down the hill?

Cake! Yes!

She had to work hard on those candles, they were kind of far from her. Her friends almost pitched in to help.

Happy birthday my sweet princess! She said for her 6th birthday, she wants to do Candy Land again. I told her I was happy she wanted to do it again because that meant she had so so much fun, but that I think it was a one time thing.

Getting back to normal has been great! Corwin is free standing now! He also has started making up his own games, I'd say perhaps Candy Land was an inspiration, BUT he missed nearly the entire party.

Normally I nix anything crazy at the dinner table, but it was just so cute.

Other funny things in the past weeks:
Alden asked Wally for a piece of Chee. Wally was like, what on earth are you saying? I had to interpret it: well, of course, it's the singular form of cheese!

Alden also made a fun birthday card for his cousin, and he loves to try to write letters/words. He was trying to write Happy Birthday, but it came out looking like the word POOP. I decided to send it and hoped that the recipient and his parents would understand.

Finally Rhianwen likes to "read" out of her picture Bibles, and I overheard this:
"The Lord said to Abraham, 'Make me a giant'. So he did. Then David slam bam killed him."


Tradition. It can be a great thing. We love our traditional annual mountain adventure in the A-frames at Orchard Lake Campground in the fall with my family. This year was relaxing more than adventurous because we decided to stay close to the campground since we had Cor-baby. He probably would have done just fine with more strenuous climbs especially since it'd have been all the same Ergoness to him, but I confess, I think we needed a little time to just laze, reflect, eat, read, watch the Clemson game, and smell smoky. One of the coolest things this year was that an all girl's school came on the weekend, and they would sing hymns and praise songs in harmony at night around their campfire. It's always so uplifting to be surprised by God's kingdom in unexpected places.

We enjoyed canoeing.

Corwin's a little worried that he's stuck in a preserver for the weekend.


Yes, he did.


Dressing like a bear.

Corwin's first view of waterfalls. Aren't they cute?

I couldn't resist taking lots of pictures. There's something about being carried on his daddy's back that is poignant to me. I don't know why really. Maybe it makes me think of that quote about standing on the shoulders of giants.

We made it! It's amazing how much faster it was to get here this year. The kids can really keep up now.

I think this picture is funny on so many levels.

A caterpillar we saw. It was GIANT. I mean like 5 inches long!!! I've never seen anything like it. Does anyone know what it is?

Corwin enjoying exploring and climbing.


Of course, we had to make S'mores.

As you may be able to tell, I left my camera on this trip and had to use a sub-par one. Crazy what a difference a camera can make. I bet if I had a big one, it'd be even better! However, I'd probably not carry it as much and therefore miss a lot of photo-ops.

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