Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Learning more about the girls

6-year-old K has been gone 1 1/2 weeks visiting the grandparents and comes back Thursday so it's just been 3-year-old L to deal with during the day. It's been an eye-opening experience, to say the least, so I thought I should chronicle what I've learned.

1. It was so much easier to just have 1 child! Getting errands run, fixing lunch, deciding what to do, etc., all go so much faster and smoother when there's just one child to motivate. It's also a whole lot harder, too. There is no big sister to help out with chores and entertaining the small one, so I end up doing much more interacting and far less of the other things I need to get accomplished. By the day's end I am also craving the more intelligent conversation of my oldest daughter.

2. There's only so much Dora a person should be asked to take. L has gotten on a Dora kick since there's no one else to put in an opinion on what to watch and we only have 7 or so episodes to choose from. She doesn't have the TV addiction her older sister sometimes displays, but it's enough to get really annoying.

3. L is a much more girly girl than K has ever been. She has suddenly taken to wearing mostly dresses and insists on accessorizing with jewelry, hair clips, and a purse stocked with such essentials as a toy camera, toy phone, empty make-up case, and a comb. This could be a response to her newly pierced ears, the fact that her tomboy sister isn't here to emulate, so she has to go with her own style, or that she has officially been part of our family for half of her life. The common wisdom for older child adoptions is that a child must be with the adoptive family for at least as long as she was in all other care situations combined (birth family, foster family, and orphanage) before she finally feels comfortable enough to show her true personality (and test the waters again that you're not going to leave her no matter what she does). Maybe L really just is a very feminine little girl.

4. We are going to have to address K's attitude issues. It's been so nice to *not* have someone talking back and getting sassy over everything and it took getting away from it for awhile to notice that it was such a problem. Truly, K's not that bad and I've seen worse, but she could definitely stand some improvement in that area. Unfortunately, she comes from 2 rather obstinate parents, so she comes by it honestly and I should probably work on that trait in myself as well. Otherwise, going through adolescence with 2 girls is going to be a nightmare.

5. These 2 weeks have been exactly the opportunity L needed to do some growing up. Potty-training occurred spontaneously and she finally decided it was okay to call herself a big girl.

It's time to get dinner together to take to a friend who just added daughters #2 and #3 to their family. I love my 2 girls, but I'm glad it's her with the three and not me!

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