Thursday, November 10, 2011

Isabelle turns 4!

October is birthday season at our house as Isabelle's birthday is only 3 days before Paul's birthday. This year Isabelle and I made a homemade coconut cake with cream cheese frosting for both of their birthdays. We had so much fun baking it together and as you can see from the pictures Isabelle is a big fan of cake batter and frosting! ;)
It is so very hard to believe my baby is already 4 years old. She was sick on her birthday so we kept her home from school, but still wanted to do something fun for her so we took her out to breakfast at Chaces and she was excited to order a "teddy bear pancake." When it arrived she announced that she got a special "owl pancake" instead! Who knows what the difference was! We opened presents and played with them most of the day and took her to her choice of restaurant for dinner which was (of course) Red Robin.We gave her a big girl doll stroller so she can continue to take her babies on walks in the neighborhood without tripping over, a tea kettle that "boils" and makes pouring sounds, a cash register toy, a new boardgame, some fingerpaint projects, a princess crown, a new harmonica, and some fairy tale story cards. She especially seemed excited about her kettle and stroller and couldn't wait to use them both. She was beyond excited about her new Halloween Hello Kitty and "shiny" boots from Grandpa George & Grandma Leslie. Mimi & Papa sent her a wonderful hotwheels parking garage for her to play with all the matchbox cars Uncle Michael gave to her. Grandma Madonna sent a lovely personalized book with the story being all about Isabelle and her friends having a tea party. She just received an adorable Minnie Mouse wallet from her cousins Lillian and Emma that surprised us all by including a bunch of real money inside it for her to shop with! This really highlights how grown up she's becoming the thought of her shopping for herself.The day after her birthday we celebrated with a small birthday party this year at Black Horse Art Studio. Isabelle has come to really enjoy her friends so much that we all agreed a smaller party where she could be with her closer friends would be the most fun and this party was just perfect. We had 8 kids who each made their own art project led by the owner of the art studio where they all painted and glittered horse-shoe paintings that were later professional lacquered. Then the kids were each able to feed a horse named Duncan who stuck his nose in through a window looking for treats! This was a blast for the kids and was amazing to see even the more scared kids overcome their fears and feed the horse. They all got to have horse-rides outside afterwards. We truly enjoyed her party this year so much as it felt so special to have such wonderful friends share the day with her.
Isabelle's favorite things at age 4 (in no order):

Playing with friends!
Preschool (finally!)
Telling us stories about her babies and animals
Helping Mommy bake
Helping Daddy in the yard
Pink, purple, and red
Sparkly anything
Board games- Candyland, Sequence, Uno
Glitter glue
Floor puzzles
Library books (yes we still have to go every week for about 60 books a time)
Her babysitters Shay, Sundaylee, and Whitney
Fancy shoes
Hello Kitty everything
Remlinger Farms amusement park rides
Lunch day at preschool
Riding her balance bike (fully balancing!)
Gymnastics class
Swimming in Maui (who doesn't love this!?)
Visiting family in Utah and Montana

Things Isabelle has learned to do this year:

Ride her balance bike fully balancing!
Zipping up her coat
Fully dressing and undressing self on own
Nighttime potty-trained herself at 3.5
Reading her name and beginning to spell out letters
Holding breath while swimming, advancing kicking etc in water
Has first daily chore-to hang up her pajamas in the morning
Learning to write her name
Cleans up toys each night before bed (may have done this before but less consistently)
Can cut out patterns really well
Painting and coloring skills and interest have increased dramatically

Daily patterns:

Still naps most days 1.5 hours or so
Bedtime at 7:30pm and "bunny wakes up" at 7:30am- she's really good at waiting for bunny except for potty
Continues to have amazingly gourmet tastes- i.e.- went to a fancier restaurant with us recently and raved about my sunchoke soup as her favorite new soup, enjoyed sushi in Maui, and continues to love most ethnic foods
Been using 1-2-3 Magic as a form of discipline

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