Aria and Annie.

IMG_7892IMG_7316   IMG_7983IMG_7818I hadn’t even stepped completely into your Sunday School room, “Oh your girls were feisty today.” Okaaaaay, hello to you too Sunday School Teacher lady. In a perfectly composed mother voice, “Oh no, I am so sorry, what happened?” The Sunday School teacher was more than eager to tattle tale “Aria pushed a girl, and that girl was my daughter.” Now I get it. Trying my best to say all the right Mommy lines, but I honestly didn’t know what to say, I was in shock, and also not in shock. Aria, this is probably where I need to throw you under the bus for just a moment— the night before Daddy caught you pummeling your big sister. Yes, pummeling. You dropped your head and your shoulder— part rhinoceros and part football— you planted your thunderous illegal hit — your sister went flying.

At home I found a moment to get eye level with you. “Hey Aria, the Sunday School teacher talked to me this morning. Is there something you want to tell me?” Shoulders sunken in, eyes lowered, pout lips in place, deep sighs deflate your little body— “Yea, I push.” “Aria why did you push her?” With the cutest pouty lips, “I sorry.” “Aria you can’t push other people, it’s not okay, you could really hurt someone. Do not push, ever. Got it?” Your head falls heavy with guilt, “Yea, got it.” “Okay good. Now look at me sweetie— is there anything else you want to tell me?” This is where I am floored. Aria, you perk up, throw your best boxing fists in front of your face, position yourself into this I’m-going-to-take-you-down-stance and growl “Whoooo’s next?” WHAT?!?!! You did not. My jaw is on the ground and my head is spinning. Is my daughter a bully? Why did she say that? Where did she learn that? Then it hits me, and it hits me hard— “Aria! Are you pretending to be Annie?!!” You light up, eyes bigger than Montana, a grin wider than Tennessee. You can not stop nodding your happy head. Aria is pretending to being Annie! I can not believe it. I can not. It all makes sense now. How did I not see this? Annie!! I’m dying. There is a scene in the 80’s musical Annie where she takes on a pack of street boys picking on a stray dog. One by one, Annie punches and pummels until she scares the lot of them and finishes the fight with those exact words— “Whoooo’s next?”

Oh Aria, my darling wild love. May you take on the world with your fists swinging— take on the world with your rhinoceros pummeling charges! Be that Annie who chooses worthy fights and fearlessly punches her way through the opposition! Use that god given fight in you for good! But please, can we make one deal—no more pummeling the Sunday School teacher’s daughter anymore, okay? Unless she’s messing with one of your sisters, then you take her on real good. But you didn’t read that here.IMG_7271IMG_7190    IMG_7198IMG_7659   IMG_7239Aria Ellen (2 years old): *You’ve been calling me “Ahnida” lately. “Hey Ahnida, where’s my lunch?” And at night, you’ve said “Goodnight Joe.” You are hysterical. *Your panties were frustrating you because they weren’t staying in their proper place– “Hey! My panties aren’t listening!” *Out of nowhere, you came nose to nose with me “Mommy you are a good Mommy. I proud of you.” *While on the Sprinter Train heading home, everyone was silent, but you. You filled the air with singing. It was the topic and the volume which drew much attention, and if it weren’t so dang funny, Mommy and Daddy would have done more to keep you quiet. But like everyone else, we were dying of laughter, and there wasn’t a thing we could do to not laugh along. “My BOOOOOOTY!! My BOOOOOOTY!” In your full perfect two-year old volume— “MY BOOOOOOTY!” Everyone heard, and everyone laughed too— too much happiness to try and bottle up. *While playing Hide and Go Seek, it was your turn to seek, so Naomi told you to close your eyes and count. You bowed your head, closed your eyes and folded your hands. “No Aria, that’s how you pray.” You laughed, made your adorable big eyes and said “Oh yea.” *Your most common phrase these days is “Well, that’s because.” Which sounds a little more like “Weewl, dats because…” You say it a lot, and it’s so darling. *You’re obsessed with getting dressed. You do it a dozen times a day. Dress on, dress off, dress on, dress off. Obsessed. *Hands down, one of my favorite things you do these days: You will wander off on your own, and for about 5-10 minutes you sing at the top of your lungs! Sometimes you sing “Maybe” from Annie, and other times you just make up the song. The neighbors and I think it’s darling! *You had a huge fall this month. At UTC Mall, you tripped over my feet, and went flying into a cement guard rail. There was a big gash right in the middle of your forehead. Blood everywhere. By the time we made it to the car, you stopped crying. As always, we were so impressed by your bravery and spunky personality in the midst of your trauma. The doctor gave you a bear for your bravery, you named him “Beefy”. An hour after they sewed up your wound, you were prancing around in your sister’s 4-year-old ballet class— not just holding your own, you were doing better than some of the 4-year-olds!IMG_7786IMG_7478 IMG_7668IMG_7368  IMG_7722 Juliet (7 months): *You started army-crawling! You never stop moving. You are giving us a work out. “Squirmy, strong, determined, content, easy-going, darling, so cute, so sweet, so happy” are words we’ve used this last month to describe you. *You cut in FOUR teeth this month! That’s six total. *Have I mentioned you love eating? And your sisters love feeding you! It’s brilliant really. If your sisters eat a good dinner, they’re allowed to feed you. And guess what. Mommy wins twice! *There’s this side of you where you know what you want. You fixate on it until you get it! You charge after it with your full body lunge, and your I-will-get-it army crawl! Then there’s the side of you that goes along with long days of driving here and driving there, sleeping wherever, eating wherever, so incredibly easy-going. *There have been evenings where you meander totally content, wandering around from toy basket to toy basket, enjoying all your new discoveries, needing nothing from others, totally happy to play and explore by yourself! *There’s this thing you do with mommy, it just about melts me to bits. It’s when you’re sitting on my hip, and there’s another person trying to win your attention. With the biggest shy grin, you tighten your grip on my shirt, and bury your head into my shoulder.IMG_8130IMG_8014  IMG_8121IMG_8106     IMG_7678Naomi: *Naomi, I accidentally broke your lollipop and you responded “That’s okay, I can still eat it like this!” You are so adaptable! *”Hey Naomi, here’s a nickel for your piggy bank”— “That’s not a nickel, that’s a nipple.” “Uh, actually it’s a nickel.” “Nope Mom, it’s a nipple.” *We enrolled you in a dance class, and it would be an understatement to say you love it. You loooooove it. As we were leaving your first class you threw some attitude “I don’t want to leave! I want to stay here forever!!” And after the second week of dance class, you hid behind a bush in the parking lot, you did not want to leave (even though class was over, and the parking lot was empty!). *Speaking of things you love, you looooove Frozen. I’d even go as far as: you’re obsessed. For being little miss adaptable, you are not adaptable about “Let It Go”. You must have your cape, your glove, your dress, your hair in a french braid with the end of your braid clipped up on top of your head, and all of this topped off with a princess tiara. Then and only then, you are ready to be Elsa and sing/dance to Let It Go (to which you know all the words, facial expressions, and choreography exactly like Elsa! You even turned down the park with GrampBill just so you could dance to Let It Go, again and again, and again. *Lots of butterflies have been emerging around our home. I said “Do you think the butterfly was born yet?” You quickly turned around, and proudly corrected me, “No Mommy, hatched!” I laughed out loud! *You saw a picture of a planet and told Aria “That’s where we live! We live in outer space!” IMG_7452  IMG_7554 IMG_7541IMG_7691  IMG_7180  IMG_7790Maertz Family Memories: *Floors finally installed! For five days Mommy took you girls on full day (9am-5pm) adventures, with naps in the car! Kite trips with Daddy in 4S! Painting on the walls in Scripps Ranch! Gymnastics and Kidventures! Cupcakes in Rancho Bernardo! And thank goodness for ChickFilA in Carmel Mountain! Final install day spent with Daddy—breakfast at ChickFilA, Del Mar beach, Jamba Juice, naps in the car, and Paschalls. *Janneke brought dinner and lovely chats. *Playdate with Erin Peet. *Dinner with the Whites. *Hillsdale/Kearny worship (Reed had a super scary emergency, Todd left, Tim filled in on the spot). *Dinner with Mayburys at our home. *Mommy prayer night with the ladies. *Daddy loving his basketball. *UTC Mall, three times this month! *KidVentures with Amie. *Pho with Emily! *Manoah’s seventh birthday at the baseball fields! *GrampBill is a godsend at UTC. He carried Aria (with a diaper on her head to stop the bleeding!) to the car while I wrangled the other two. GrampBill got Naomi to her beloved ballet class while Joe and I had the other two at the emergency room. *MOPS! This month I invited Erica, Karen, Anjuli and Brooke! *Enjoyed a fancy plate of food with our dinner club at the Torres home! *Neighbor Eric Wright helped us tackle all the little projects in our kitchen! *Hit up the Sprinter to Vista for dinner and ice cream. *A very long Wednesday with all three, going around SD most of the day. Got home totally exhausted, Daddy gave Mommy some very needed alone time at the grocery store. *Family breakfast at Snooze! Daddy watched all three so that Mommy could enjoy some retail therapy at UTC! Daddy took all three of you to the car for the last hour because it was easier! *Woodall boys birthday party in Coronado. *March Madness, we almost cheered BU & SDSU on in person this year! Poor Baylor lost to Wisconsin, pretty sure GrampBill loved his big win. *Backsplash installed!IMG_7926IMG_7705  IMG_7183IMG_7673  IMG_7441IMG_7458