Reining her In… Advice Welcome!

Hula Girl has been engaging in some age-appropriate-but-exaggerated-beacause-of-a-lot-of-changes naughty behavior lately. I have been trying to figure out what is the best way to give her the support she needs to feel safe and secure but to downplay a lot of the defiance. Jonathan and I have brainstormed, searched our parenting books, read through the archives on several blogs and groups I’m part of, asked our moms, and prayed for wisdom. We feel like we’ve got a plan now.

First of all, I want to make it clear that Jonathan and I are extremely cautious about any and all discipline tactics we use. He is a therapist, after all! 😉 We do not use spanking, and time out in our house is a very untraditional sort of thing. I generally use a lot of gentle physical touch and tons of empathy when talking Hula Girl through her rough spots. But when the entire day is rough, my tolerance for her childishness just gets lower and lower to the point where Jonathan has to take over completely for a few minutes when he gets home just so I can regain my composure.

I also want to point out that Hula Girl is a very compliant child by nature. Her wildest temper tantrums have been due to overtiredness or low blood sugar, without exception. She is generally happy, eager to please, and very very smart! She does not have to be told more than once not to engage in any particular behavior. Her age, however, puts us in the prime time frame for battles of the will, if I should choose to engage in such things (I don’t).

The last clarification I want to make is this: because she is only three years old (and a young three), Jonathan and I try very hard to balance age-appropriate expectations for her with her actual abilities. For example, she can remember things freakishly well. She remembers people she has met once, a year ago, by name. Sometimes she will ask me about a random person and she will have to explain when and where we were when we met that person before I have even a clue what she’s talking about. And yet, she remembers exactly what color their eyes were and what kind of shoes they had on their feet. This makes me and Jonathan believe that she will remember a rule we set in place for a long period of time. So our constant question becomes, “How much of this behavior is childishness (age-related), and how much of this is foolishness (choosing to do the wrong thing even when she knows the right thing to do)?”

I took the kids swimming at the YMCA on Thursday. They had closed the pirate pool, so my only option was to hold Gelato while Hula Girl floated and splashed around in a life jacket within an arm’s reach in the big pool. It actually worked out quite well, especially when another 3-year-old little girl came over with a pool noodle for Hula Girl to play with. The two of them kicked, paddled, and dunked around for a while, and all was well. I gave Hula Girl the typical warning that we needed to leave soon and asked her to choose whether she wanted to leave in two minutes or five minutes (this is a Love and Logic tactic). She, of course, chose five minutes. I gave her a 2-minute warning. Then when our time was up, I said, “Do you want to swim to the steps or have me pull you on your noodle to the steps?” She chose for me to pull her. But then she wouldn’t get out.

I reminded her that she had chosen to stay five more minutes, and that five minutes was up. I even offered her two choices on how she wanted to get out of the water (like a horse or like a dragon). She refused again. I looked into her eyes and said, “I can see you’re having a hard time leaving right now. It’s hard to leave when you’re having so much fun.” She agreed. I continued, “We are leaving now because it’s time to go home for dinner.” She grudgingly took my hand and we walked over to our towels.

I had to fumble around with our towels and swim bag for a few seconds, and before I knew it, Hula Girl was walking back toward the pool. I was shocked. She has never tried to leave my side before. Ever. I called her, and squatted down to her level. She said, “Yes, Mommy?” I told her to come back. She said no, turned around, and walked to the edge of the pool. I freaked out. Yes, she had her life jacket on. But she has not had swim lessons. This was a huge safety issue on top of her blatantly defying me.

Instead of panicking on the outside, I calmly walked over to where she was and took her by the hand. I got down to her level and told her, “You do not have the freedom to disobey me. It is unsafe for you to play near the pool alone. You will come with me now because we are leaving.” She came back with me, to my absolute relief. I asked her to stand with her back against the wall while I got out our towels and wrapped Gelato and her snugly. We changed our clothes and headed to the car.

While we were changing, I told her that it was not okay for her to disobey the way she had done. I restated the fact that it is unsafe for her to play near a pool without an adult nearby. I told her that because she had disobeyed, she would be getting a consequence. I told her that I would need to discuss her consequence with Daddy because I wanted to make sure it was appropriate. Then I told her not to worry about it (another L&L tactic).

We decided her consequence was that she could not take toys into her bath for a week. She loves water play, and since she disobeyed at the pool, we figured the closest meaningful consequence was to un-fun her bath. (Jonathan actually suggested taking the whole family swimming this weekend and not letting her participate, but I nixed that idea because I don’t like the thought of one of us having to sit out WITH her! Why make the consequence for me, too?!)

After the pool incident we had a busy day on Friday- filled with a 3-hour drive to a wedding, then the drive home that night. We arrived home at midnight. Needless to say our whole family was tired on Saturday.

And then Sunday happened.

Before church on Sunday, Hula Girl peeled and ate paint off her wall; licked fingernail polish; colored on Gelato, the wall, a chair, a door, and some furniture; and cut her hair. And it’s not like she’s not supervised. She was just using whatever tactics she could use to tell us she was feeling wildly out of control. She needed us to just take control back so she felt safe and secure. She was out of her routine, out of her sleep schedule, and just wonky all over. Plus her behavior has been deteriorating for some time now, so it was just the right time for a huge change in her life.

So now, here’s where we are:

  • We removed all toys and books from her room  in an effort to encourage her to stay in bed rather than getting out of bed to wander and play. We hope this will yield about 30 more minutes of sleep per day.
  • Hula Girl is under a strict “3-step rule.” She is not allowed to go more than 3 steps away from me or Jonathan at any time, unless we give express permission. This keeps her away from Gelato (she had started being more physical with him than I would like- not kicking or hitting, but rough hugs and some gentle pushing- enough to make me nervous) and it keeps her within my eyesight/arm’s reach at all times.

Of course, I am still doing plenty of superfun things with her and allowing her LOTS of freedom when we go outside. I don’t maintain her “3-step rule” outside at all. I am still interacting normally with her. It’s not like she’s being emotionally punished. I think the closer proximity is actually better for both of us as it encourages a lot more interaction and eye contact throughout our day.

While we have reined in her freedoms, we have also upped our talk of trust. We told her that trust means we believe she will do what we ask her to do, even if we’re not there to watch. We told her that she needs to earn our trust by doing what we ask her to do while we’re watching her. We will be stepping down our interventions incrementally over the next few weeks.

Do you have any other suggestions or thoughts about this particular age and how to handle some of these behaviors? Is there some fantastic article or book you’d like to recommend? We’re open to exploring lots of options!


Friday’s Firsts

Both of my children had some “firsts” in their lives on Friday. I took them swimming at the Y, which was a wonderful break from the monotony. It’s been very cold here lately, so even going outside for a few minutes at a time is just tough. But a nice warm indoor toddler pool was just the thing.

I had to chuckle while I was there because I had Gelato’s carseat/carrier and I had put our towels and stuff in it rather than getting a locker. I brought it out to the pool area with us. I had Hula Girl walk in front of me, I carried Gelato, and I had the carrier swinging at my side. A little boy who was probably 8 or so looked at me with HUGE round eyes and said, “How many babies do you HAVE?!” Ha, guess he thought the carrier had another baby in it!

Anyway, our firsts:

Gelato: first time swimming and blew his first raspberry!

Hula Girl: first kid’s meal and first time she’s ever had her full name used in a “you’re in so much trouble!” kind of way.

Gelato’s are self-explanatory. Hula Girl’s kid’s meal came on the way home from swimming when I realized it was 4:50 and she needed to eat by 5:15, while I had to get Gelato down for the night by 5:30. So we stopped at Wendy’s. Can I just tell you that I hated every second of it!?!? I do not want my kids eating that kind of grossness. Alas, it was what we had to do. Then when we got home, it was freezing so I decided to rush Hula Girl to the front door and let her in to take off shoes and coat while I ran back to the car (parked in the driveway, where I could see it the whole time) to get Gelato. When he and I came in the door, Hula Girl was nowhere to be seen. I heard rustling upstairs (where she is not allowed to be by herself), and I said loudly and sternly, “[Hula Girl’s full name including both middle names!], come downstairs right now.” I heard scrambling, then, “Yes, Mommy! I’m coming!” She knew she was being naughty. Haha! I still don’t know what she was doing. Must not have been too destructive. (Don’t worry- our house is toddler proof. It’s not like she was guzzling medicine or anything like that.)

So there you have it! Would you believe that Gelato’s first swimming experience was literally seven full months earlier than Hula Girl’s? I don’t know why we waited so long to take her. Must have been because we lived in the world’s smallest town that only had an outdoor pool! 🙂 Thank goodness for the YMCA.

Not a Baby Anymore

I took Hula Girl swimming on Saturday. It was the first time we’d gotten out of the house, just her and me, since Gelato graced us with his presence outside my belly. So overdue, and so much fun! We went to the pirate pool at the Y, and I wasn’t sure if she’d be hesitant at all, since we haven’t been there in months. But nope! She ran right in, no qualms, and had a blast.

On the way home from the Y, she was talking kind of randomly in the back seat. Suddenly, she got quiet and then said, “Mommy? I am not a baby anymore.”

No, Little, you’re not. And that kind of breaks my heart, to be honest.

Her obsession with all things “toddler” has grown and flourished lately. She grew over an inch in one month, which meant that suddenly, all the fall and winter clothes that fit her in September no longer fit. I culled through her dresser and pulled out anything smaller than a size 3T (!- she’s not even two and a half!!!). She watched me and commented, “Those things are too small for me. Those things are for babies.” Then we went shopping and bought her three new pairs of pants (sparkly jeans, khakis, and stripey fleece) the next day. She proclaimed them “toddler pants.”

She also likes eating “toddler” food with her “toddler” fork. She likes reading “toddler” books and wearing “toddler” shoes (which reminds me, I need to go through her shoe bin as well- her feet are ginormous these days). She likes sleeping in her “toddler” crib (not sure how it is ANY different from a “baby” crib, especially since it’s the SAME ONE she’s been sleeping in her entire life… but, hey…). And she especially likes the fact that she’s the toddler and Gelato’s only a baby.

We often talk about how she can do so many cool things that he can’t do because he’s just a baby. Things like walking, running, jumping, eating, singing, reading, and so on. But lest you feel worried that we’re playing favorites, let me inform you that Hula Girl is doing her very best to teach him how to do all the things she likes to do. I showed her how to “bicycle” his legs and arms to make them strong for walking and running. I showed her how he likes to lift his head when he’s on his tummy, to get him ready for sitting up, swimming, and other skills. I showed her how to gently pat his legs while she’s singing her ABCs to him. I showed her how we can prop him up so he can sit and read with us. She looooooves being “in charge” of him. And he’s not going to be able to get away with anything. Something tells me we’re going to have a lot of discussions related to tattling in our home in the next few years. 🙂

Yes, Hula Girl is growing up. She amazes me with her thoughts, words, and actions. She seems so much bigger and more mature than she was when Gelato was first born. I suppose she really is- after all, now she has the 2-year molars and new pants to prove it. I’ll leave you with her astounding question from this morning: “Mommy, what’s on the back of those mountains over there?”


Okay, y’all, my Hula Girl is brave. As in, not afraid of anything, runs around like she’s the queen of the forest, climbs and jumps like a monkey, brave. She’s also a bit reserved. I like that about her. No, I don’t think it’s rude if she doesn’t automatically say hi, wave, smile, and blow kisses to the old man sitting in the entrance to the Y. Just sayin’.

So, brave-

Hula Girl has been slightly afraid to go down slides her entire life. Her first slide was this Kangaroo Climber slide which was given to her for “Christmas” (she might have received it a few months early so she could actually use it before the snow fell) by Grammy and Grampy. I should also note here that hers is different colors since it’s a slightly older model (YES, yard sales are the way to go when it comes to kids’ toys). Anyway, it took her a full week to really get used to climbing up and sliding down the slide. She was afraid of sliding down it for some reason. We even put down a nice green “landing pad” made of indoor/outdoor carpeting stuff. But she did finally get used to it. Now she can climb up the outside, crawl through all the holes, and clamber any which way she deems acceptable at the moment.

Her next slide was this slide by Little Tikes (again, different colors/slightly different model). We actually keep this one inside the house because during those long winter months, it was just necessary.  It took her about a week to get fully comfortable climbing up the ladder and getting situated comfortably for a nice, easy slide down on her bottom. She has had this one around for a few months as well, and now she climbs up the slide itself (she learned how to take her socks off by herself just so that she can manage this feat) and jumps down the ladder part. She also feels quite confident going down the slide “on mummy” (on her tummy) and spends the greater part of her free time sending various toys down the slide before her.

She recently conquered the littlest kid slide at the playground near our house. It is less than four feet high at the top, but it does have a sharp curve about halfway down. She would not go near any other slides on the playground for at least a month.

Then, we found a new and much nicer playground near our house, and it has a couple of preschool slides- she went down those with no hesitation on her first visit to the park. However, she has yet to repeat that experience. The second time we went, we took Jonathan with us, and he took Hula Girl down the BIG KID slides. I am not kidding when I tell you these slides start at least fifteen feet from the ground. There is one twisty corkscrew one and one bumpity-bump one. (I have to ask, why do they do that to poor kids? I mean, when you go down the bumpity-bump slides, doesn’t your rear-end hate you for the rest of the day? Not to mention the damage done to your spine, brain, and jaw. Seriously, park designers. Just build a slide that’s longer and has a gentler slope. Then you don’t have to put bumps in the slide and all of us will save millions in chiropractor bills. Sheesh.) Anyway, Hula Girl was terrified of these slides, but since Daddy went with her, she agreed to give them a try. She went down each one time and then asked to go back on the swing.

But all that hesitation ended after that park visit. The day following her surgery, the Saturday before Easter, my mom (Grammy) took Hula Girl to a park near Grammy and Grampy’s house. Hula Girl met some boys there who were really kind and sweet to her, and the eldest boy (about 8 years old) took very special care of Hula Girl. He took her down the “boob ide” (tube slide) and sat right next to her and showed her how to use her feet to help slow down her descent. After that moment, she lost all reservation and went down numerous slides- straight, curvy, bumpity-bump, corkscrew, and tubes. All by herself. Grammy said she about had a heart attack watching this little bitty girl who doesn’t even really have any more hair than wispy baby fuzz still going down these huge slides built for big kids all by herself. Yikes, I am so glad I wasn’t actually there.

And then today, at the Pirate Pool, Hula Girl told me she wanted to go down the big slide. I have told her no in the past because “only big kids” can go down the slide. So today, she asked me, “Bib ide?” and  I responded, “Maybe…” She told me, “No, onee bib deeds.” (No, only big kids.) But I said, “Well, if you really want to try it, you can go down the big slide today.” “YEAH!”

She tried it, she loved it, she repeated it at least seven times. And I can officially breathe a sigh of relief because I have jumped that hurdle in my own thinking and I have seen that my little girl really is capable of doing this big scary thing, so I don’t have to worry about it any more. Several other moms, and the lifeguard, asked me how old Hula Girl is, and were shocked to hear she’s only 22 months old. “Wow, she’s brave! Is she ever afraid of anything?”

Why yes, in fact, just try waving to her and saying hi. You’ll see she’s afraid of some things! 🙂

Surgery Week Update- Weekend Prior

So I was typing this surgery week update and I hadn’t split the days, but then I realized I was giving a ton of details. I copied the words to a word document, and lo and behold, I had five pages written. I figured that would be a long post, so I have split it up into days. Here’s the weekend- Saturday and Sunday.

 I’ve been absent because Hula Girl has a surgery coming up this Friday and I had a lot to do to get prepared. It really seems like the whole build-up to the surgery has been quite hectic and involved, but that the following days will be much more relaxed. I just pray it goes that way, anyway.

Let’s see, the weekend was spent doing family things. Jonathan and I took Hula Girl to the playground on Saturday morning. It was really warm all weekend (in the upper 80s), so it was fun to get outside and enjoy the weather. Hula Girl stuck to swinging the majority of the time, but she did (reluctantly) join her Daddy on the slide a couple of times.

On Sunday, I went grocery shopping while Jonathan took Hula Girl to the Y, where she indulged in some of her favorite “Pirate Pool” action. She even got brave enough to lie down in the water and “float” on her back a bit. Of course she’s just the cutest thing ever in her little bikini. She’s getting skinnier and skinnier, but taller and taller. She still has a bit of chunk on her thighs, but her massive head on top of her relatively trim trunk is just so adorable to behold. I even showed Jonathan how to roll her *swim diaper down so that it doesn’t poke out of her bikini bottoms- a much better fashion choice, if you ask me.

*Hula Girl is amazingly potty trained, to the point where she doesn’t even let it out while swimming. I know this because she is still in the “tell Mommy every time I am going pee-pee” phase. She always goes on the “big potty” at the Y right after swimming, and she definitely holds a LOT in while she swims. The only reason she wears a swim diaper is that they’re required until the child is two. Can’t wait for June!

Anyway, while Hula Girl napped on Saturday and Sunday, Jonathan got some major work done out in the yard. He cleared enough rocks to make ample room for our garden and lawn. It took him a total of six hours to clear all the rocks, and yes, he got blisters. I observed with an umbrella over my head and a water bottle in my hand. Pregnancy has its benefits. 😉

I also spent some time packing on Sunday to prepare for our week at Grammy and Grampy’s house. My one complaint: I don’t have enough maternity clothes. I literally had to pack dirty clothes and do a load of laundry as soon as we arrived because we didn’t have time to do it over the weekend. Nice.

Hiatus Over (It’s a Long One!)

As pointed out today by Chelsea, I have not blogged in a while. Funny thing about pregnancy brain is that I really truly thought I hadn’t blogged in 3 days. But then I realized it’s actually been two weeks. Oops. Guess I’m a bit behind. I was napping some days, but other days I was reading a book series. Now I’m reading The Help just because I’ve heard it’s good. Yes, reading frequently distracts me from other things in life, like this blog.

Let’s see… what have we been up to around here?

The weather has been absolutely fantastic for the past week. Punxsutawney Phil was wrong wrong wrong when it came to our outlook this spring. We definitely got maybe a couple extra weeks of winter, but we’re certainly in spring mode now. All week long the temperatures have been in the 70s and  the skies have been sunny and cloud-free. It’s even been less windy- dare I say mildly breezy- all week long. Hula Girl and I have been taking advantage of this weather and we’ve been on the go!

Monday was our trip to the YMCA, where Hula Girl splashes around in the Pirate Pool. Unfortunately the Pirate Pool was closed. I think they replaced all the water in the pool and the water temperature was only 78°. Brrr. So we kicked around the big pool and the lazy river, but Hula Girl was very sad that she couldn’t run around and splash as she normally does.

Tuesday was storytime as usual. A funny thing that happened here was that Hula Girl and I got a chance to practice her obedience. We were headed out the door of the children’s section to the checkout machines. She started to run. I called her by name and said, “Come here.” She did not listen. So I got out the big guns. “Uh, oh.” Yes, it took those two little words spoken in an almost-singsong voice to get her to stop in her tracks and turn to face me. Then I said again, very firmly, “Come here.” She smiled, came running over to me, and hugged me. I knelt down to her level and said (whispered), “When mommy says, ‘Come,’ you come. Say, ‘Yes, Mommy.'” She said, “Ye-thhhh, MO-mmy!” Then we walked on, holding hands. The librarian watching the whole scene smiled and said, “She’s so obedient!” Why yes, Ms. Librarian Lady, she is. Thank you for noticing. We’ve worked HARD to keep her that way!

Wednesday was our hang-around-the-house day. Hula Girl woke up Wednesday morning with a runny nose. She had also woken up numerous times in the night just kind of whining. Great, she’s sick, I thought. I was quite disappointed. We played outside a bit and played inside a lot (with the windows open). I put her down for her nap early, and lo and behold, she slept for… 1 hour, tops. Greeeeaaaat… I will say that Wednesday provided me one of the more pleasurable experiences in my week. When I put Hula Girl down for her nap that day, I put on a swimsuit, slathered myself in sunscreen, and laid out on my balcony overlooking the reservoir and read a book. Those of you who know me in person are thinking, How long did that last?! Yes, it was totally unlike me, and I will rarely do it. But it seemed like a great idea at the time. And I’m pretty sure I got some good vitamin D. After all, I was using the horrible sunscreen left over from last summer. (I will try to find the post and link that one here soon.)

Thursday dawned and Hula Girl didn’t seem so sick after all. She only had a few whining sessions the previous night, and was silent after 10. No runny nose, just slight congestion. Therefore we deemed it necessary to have a visit from Grammy, who accompanied us to the park. Oh, the glorious sunshine.

Today we had another bum-around day but we also visited the playground at the elementary school near our house. Have I mentioned that schools around here are on a 4-day-a-week schedule? SO nice for their teachers, but really, how do the kids learn anything?! Their year is not very much longer than traditional school years. My neighbor tried explaining it to me one day by saying that her kids are in school longer each day. Based on the times she provided me, her kids are in school exactly 6 hours less each week than my students were when I was teaching. I can’t imagine teaching everything I taught with 6 hours per week less time to teach! So, maybe not so nice for their teachers. Hmmm… Anyway, we visited the playground here and Hula Girl got her kicks swinging and sliding and collecting rocks. Cool.

As far as generalities for Hula Girl go, she’s getting so much more grown-up these days. She’s talking much more clearly, she’s attempting to pronounce words accurately (hence the Ye-thhhh, Mommy!), she’s able to name and identify all her colors. We’ve been working on letters and numbers here and there, and her letter flashcards (index cards on which I wrote the letters of the alphabet in purple marker; high-tech stuff only in my house! lol) are her favorite possession. Of course, this morning she tried to wash the “o” and now it’s a blob. But she loves those flashcards. She has really been great about using the potty. We have had some accidents here and there, but we’ve cut out all rewards for going potty. She stopped asking for them, and I am not going to remind her. 🙂 I think her new reward is getting to wash her hands. She would spend hours standing on her step stool in the bathroom, washing her hands and toys, if I let her. Sometimes I turn on the water in there (she can’t reach the faucet- just the water stream) and tell her to wash her hands because I need a few kid-free minutes in the kitchen. She’ll poke her little head out the door and say, “Hi, Mommy! Wah-ans!” (Wash hands!). She’s really quite proud of herself. And let’s face it, water’s fun.

My pregnancy is going well. Yesterday marked 20 weeks. So, halfway there… or MORE than halfway if I get my way. I’d like to deliver a week early this time. Hula Girl was induced on her due date and arrived one day late. I want to feel what it’s like to actually go into labor. I’m doing some research on natural birthing methods. I’m not sure I could actually handle it all-natural (I mean, that epidural really made things easy last time), but I kind of like the idea of at least going through most of labor in an upright position (unlike last time, when I was forced to lay on my left side for 14 hours straight). Actually, now that I’ve written the last two sentences, I think I will just do a separate post on that topic once I have done more research and have more to say about it.

As far as the pregnancy goes, some fun things have been happening. I had already been feeling Gelato moving around in there for a few weeks, but now Jonathan has been able to feel it from the outside. And today as I have been sitting here writing this post, I have actually seen my stomach move a few times when Gelato’s given a particularly hard twitch. None of it actually hurts yet, so I know Gelato’s still quite little.  I actually threw up this morning out of the blue. I haven’t had nausea for weeks, but after gulping half of my glass of supercold water, I just had to do it. So weird. I felt fine afterward, so I just took it more slowly the next time around.

I have been having some aches and pains in my back and hips. I have also been hot. I am kind of not looking forward to our summer here, where it’s expected to be in the 90s and 100s every day from May to October. But my plan is still in place to laze around in the baby pool in the shade of the house every day while Hula Girl naps. Maybe the nice breeze/wind will help cool me off a bit, too.

Okay, I will be posting more frequently again. Pinky promise. Then you won’t have to read mountains of information all at once. 🙂

The Pirate Pool

Oh yes, Hula Girl has found her place in life, at least for a season. This morning’s visit to the YMCA was slightly delayed due to the untimely need to have our pictures taken for our membership access cards. Therefore we were actually there when the little kids’ pirate pool was open, and Hula Girl had a blast.

The water in the pool is 14 inches deep. There are waterfalls, fountains, and “bubblers” everywhere. There is a huge “pirate ship” in the middle of the pool, which features a tunnel through its lower decks and a water slide from its upper deck. Hula Girl climbed all the way up to the top, where she was “steering” the ship. Then she discovered some jets that squirt streams of water across the top of the water slide. Then she discovered that if she tries to drink from those jets of water, she slides down the slide face-first and struggles to get her head above water at the bottom. Yes, quite scary. Fortunately I was right there and lifted her up quickly. Her reaction? Sputter, sputter, blink, blink, shake head, “[Hula Girl] WAH NOWN IDE INEE PAH-POH POOOOOO!” (Fall down slide in the pirate pool!) Yes, she yelled it at the top of her lungs.

Then she ran around in the water, slipping every now and then, yelling, “[Hula Girl] WAH NOWN INEE PAH-POH POOOOO!” She was giggling with maniacal glee each and every time. She even went over to the smaller slide repeatedly just so she could emulate her head-first plunge into the high seas and shout about it some more.

She talks of nothing else. I can’t wait to take her back!

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