I apologize for the lack of updates around here, but now that the um, joyful, time of Christmas is over, I should be able to get back on track here.
Both girls got quite a nice stash over the holidays. Fiona loved all her goods...one of her favorites is this plastic glow-in-the-dark skeleton that you put together. She carries him around everywhere (along with her friend "Backpack" that looks just like the one on Dora...sigh...that was a pick-up from Claire's a few weeks before Christmas...). He falls apart, of course, because he's a puzzle, so I am always putting those hip bones back on.
She also got this Hello Kitty camera (thank you Auntie Maggie!), which she loves. We love it, too. Imagine having paparazzi in your home. It's like that. We tell her to at least make sure her subjects have all of their clothes on. All of them. It's a "film" camera (she keeps calling the canisters "batteries") so we have two rolls, nearly three, to develop soon.
Sophia has taken two unassisted steps!! She has been "walking" now with our hands for a little while. She has also been keeping me up a lot at night and is so so oh so grumpy in the morning. I hope there is a molar for all of this misery.
On the last day of school before her week of vacation, her school had a Holiday Party. It was at the library in the storytime room, which has a bit of a stage in front of the windows. And there was our girl, right in the middle, belting out all of the songs (with added expressive arm movements). There were a gaggle of grandparents and parents there, so the kids were a bit in the spotlight. Many of them did not sing (I sure wouldn't have...) at first, but mostly everyone warmed up after a bit. I got a lot of comments afterwards of the ilk of "she's going to be an actress when she grows up!" or "she sure isn't shy!" or "she knows what she wants"...you get the idea. When watching her interact with the other kids, I get a bit of "She sure knows how to stand up for herself!". All the parents also got a CD of the kids singing at school...and one can clearly pin point Fiona's angelic voice in the crowd (there are 11 other students).
Sophia got these two Signing Time DVDs (thank you Auntie Alex and Auntie Maggie!), which I am not able to watch all the time (Mommy hides in the Special Room, don't you know), so Fiona has been teaching me the colors. Sophia's favorite sign is "food". She has done "milk" once. "More" is another big favorite.
Fiona can now also write her name (after months of "John"--which she now has a letterset of--thank you, Auntie Alex! and a few days of her best bud "Max"). She can clearly recognize some words and is asking how to spell, well, everything. She will read words and spell them out and ask what they say...sometimes she will try to sound them out.
I hope everyone had a great Winter Holiday, and may 2006 be even better. Like maybe Bush will resign...Cheney goes to jail...something of that nature would have us dancing in the streets!