I have a five year old! How is that even possible? We celebrated with grandparents, aunts and cousins. Her “big” gift was her new bike. But it wasn’t much of a surprise because you never surprise a serious cyclist with a new bike. These are very personal things. She’d seen it at the bike shop, and had tried it out. But she didn’t think she’d be getting it until summer, so she was surprised to see it when she woke up that morning. She tells me her favorite present was the Paw Patrol suitcase I gave her. I almost didn’t give it to her as a gift. She goes back and forth between our house and my parents’ frequently. We had been carrying stuff in bags, so I got her a suitcase. I almost just gave it to here, but then wrapped it up with the other gifts.
We’ve developed a few birthday traditions. We do a birthday countdown, where she takes a ring off a chain each day. We started it on New Years. It was a nice way to deal with the post holiday let down. It gives her something to look forward to. We bake cupcakes together on the day before her birthday and then I bake a cake to surprise her with. This year she requested that I surprise her with a dinosaur cake. And then after all the celebrating is done mark off her height. I made a board while we were in Virginia to mark her growth. That way we could take it with us if/when we moved. I’m glad I did that. I would hate for those first marks to be left on a door frame in a house we left behind.
Every year on her birthday we conduct a little interview that I record. It’s interesting to see how she changes each year. Unfortunately unless I want to upgrade this account I can’t post videos. But here is this year’s list of what she’s up to.
Annelise at five…
- she’s about 41 inches tall and 36 lbs.
- wears size 5t (still has some 4t) and her shoes are a size 8 (still, but I’m buying 9s now)
- had her first hair cut this year
- we ended afternoon naps this summer, although she sometimes falls asleep during rest time at school. (we did moved bedtime up by an hour)
- she is in PreK at Sparta schools. She loves school.
- she has several school friends. I hear about Silas, Alondra, and Naomi about everyday. She loves playing with her cousins Lincoln, Henry, and Miles and lately shes been getting to spend more time with Carson and Alison. John Henry is still her BFF. And after a year and a half she still asks about Heys.
- Her stuffed animals are still her favorite things. The menagerie has grown. Lately her favorite thing is to create a “nest” to cuddle with them. Basically she takes all the blanket and pillows and makes a nest for them.
- She’s into Paw Patrol right now. She takes them with her in a back pack. She also always keeps a little stuffed dog with her that is “baby Izzy.”
- She still has a “boo” but she doesn’t carry it with her anymore. It stays at home, but while we’re home its always with her.
- Her favorite TV shows are Paw Patrol, Dinosaur train, WordWorld, and The Cat in the Hat.
- I don’t know how high she can count. We get stuck at 30, but only because she struggles with the “th” sound so it turns into “f” which then skips us to 40. But she has a general concept of how counting and numbers work.
- She’s starting to do basic math. She can add and subtract numbers less than 10. And can do 10 + (any single digit number).
- She knows all the letters both upper and lower case. Knows their sounds and is starting to identify letters that thing start with. She can identify several sight words. She loves letters and words and wants desperately to be able to read and write. She follows me around with a magnadoodle writing letters and trying to link them into words; constantly asking, “does (series of letters) spell anything?”
- She loves to “read.” She’s memorized several of her favorite books and will recite them to her puppies. She loves to read anything Paw Patrol or anything about Christmas. I read Rudolph to her year round.
- She can write her first and last name. Sometimes she can write my name, but the “u” tends to throw her off.
- Her speech has become an issue again. I’ve gotten a call from her school and they are going to have her evaluated by a speech therapist. Initially they thought it might just be that she was trying to say words that were beyond the normal scope of a preschooler. But we knew when she completed therapy before that she may need to revisit it when she’s older.
- We still have regular game and puzzle nights. The games are getting more advanced and the puzzles are getting more pieces.
- Lately she’s been into making “art.” She has a collection of craft supplies and will spend hours cutting, glueing, stamping, and coloring.
- Still not into dolls or barbies. She will occasionally play with her doll, but she prefers her stuffed animals.
- She wants to be a Paleontologist and a farmer when she grows up. She says she doesn’t want to get married or have kids. She wants me to live on her farm with her and help with the animals while she is digging up fossils.
- She still rides her bike with the Dirt Dawgs.
- She started taking dance. Loves it.
- Her favorite colors are red and blue.
- She still doesn’t like to wear dresses. And now she doesn’t like jeans or anything with buttons, zippers or snaps. She’s happiest in basic cotton outfits, yoga pants, tee shirts and sweatshirts.
- Her goals for this next year are to play with her racoon and to have dinner at the Brown Bear. (I think we can make that happen).