September 2012

Monthly Archive

“kee-gah-ten”

Posted by lynn on 21 Sep 2012 | Tagged as: nalani

These days, when we ask Nalani where she goes to school she bypasses the whole newly-begun preschool experience and says “kee-gah-ten.” We then ask who’s your teacher? And she says “Miss Wash,” Melina’s teacher.

She packs a lunch alongside her sister every night. It consists of multiple packaged snack items – like granola bars and fruit roll-ups, anything recognizable within toddler reach – zipped neatly in a plastic baggie then her old daycare lunch box. She puts it by the door each night for the next morning. And each morning she goes her own way to her own school, forgetting about the lunchbox until Melina packs one up again that night. Just look at the fun she has!

poppers

Posted by lynn on 21 Sep 2012 | Tagged as: nalani

tomato_baby

biker

Like most babies, Nalani earned a cutesy nickname long before she could say words, and in this case, before we knew how much her personality would match. We call her Nali for short, and keeping in line with Melina’s nickname (Mina Bean, transitioned from Meli Bean, which rhymes with jelly bean), we soon took to calling Nalani Nali Pop (rhymes with lollipop). It’s since transformed into Poppers, which fits all too nicely with the firecracker “pop” of her emerging personality.

daddys_beer

big_cat

She can still be totally chill. Nalani loves to look at books, and oftentimes will quietly flip through them in her crib for who knows how long in the morning before we come to “wake” her for the day. And when she’s in the right mood she responds to routines, requests, and common sense far more than either of our other kids when they were two. She does everything with confidence, determination, and decisiveness. (She certainly doesn’t get the last trait from me.)

pose

bikeride

But when she sets her mind of something, Nalani does not back down. Even her preschool teachers have learned “you don’t fight Nalani; you either joke with her or make her think it’s her own idea – otherwise you’ll lose.” At school she’s decided she’s no longer a Wee Ducky (young two-year-old class) but a Bumblebee (three-year-old class). She tells me “I Bumblebee” and according to her teachers, after nap each day she gets up, walks into the Bumblebee room, and sits down nicely for circle time. And every day her Wee Ducky teacher walks in and says “Nalani, you belong in the Wee Ducky class” and takes her back. Every day.

dolores_park

lemonade

She also loves nothing more than an audience, especially one that’s laughing. She’s a brilliant hide-and-seeker (for a tot), meaning she can actually hide silently in a strategic spot (again, for a tot). Oftentimes she does this without an actual game happening, just to get a reaction. On the flip side, we sometimes call her Echo because she repeats everything she hears – especially from Melina – and most often in a playful way, like she knows she’s being funny. She makes silly faces, tickles peoples’ toes, and does silly dances no matter where she is or what she’s supposed to be doing. Earlier this week she decided naptime at school, with her sheets as a stage, was as good a time as any for a little recital. Her teachers didn’t agree. But she’s so cute about it, well, it’s hard not to laugh while trying to get her to comply.

swimmer

babygirl

One of our most telling Nalani stories happened at the Aquarium in July. As our three girls played on a small indoor structure, Joey, Laney, and I watched Nalani walk up to a little boy (but a good head taller than her), pick him up, and move him out of her way so she could access the slide. The kid wasn’t phased in the slightest (I realized later he’s probably picked up and moved like that all the time, just as toddler Nalani is), but Joey and I jumped up shouting “Did she really just do that?!” and ran over to reprimand her. As I told and re-told the story to friends (always with a mix of laughter and disbelief), I realized the act wasn’t violent at all. It was determined and confident (and completely ego-centric), just like our littlest girl and the toddler that she is. As I’ve started saying since that day, she’s very good at being two.