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Emily is student of the month for her class at school! Mrs. Archambault says she is having a great start to the year. 9/1

Emily got her hair cut! After 3 years of growing out her bangs, she realizes that if she had bangs again, she wouldn't have to put in clips and ponies every morning. Daddy has also been telling her that if she cuts off the straggly bits on the ends, her hair will be easier to brush. She looks so great even the moms of the boys in her class have noticed! 9/3-9

While Sarah is at a playdate, Emily and I hit the mall to finally spend a Gap giftcard she received from Aunt Sue for her birthday! I told Emily she had $40 and it was up to her whether she wanted to spend it all on one thing, or to find 2 or more things. I said we'd have to do some math to figure it all out! We picked up a pair of boots, but when Em saw they were $39.50, she shook her head right away...she definitely wanted to buy several less expensive things! I steered her to the sale rack and after trying on several combinations, we found a pair of pants (they come with iron-ons you put on yourself), a fancy layered t-shirt, a striped t-shirt, and a pair of footie socks with a pompom on the heel. Everything matches and Emily was SO happy. She wore her outfit the very next school day and thought she looked VERY grown-up! 9/4

Em did a great job on her neighborhood homework, drawing a map of our block. She was so busy counting every house on the street that I had to prompt her to notice other things, but once I said, "What do you notice on this corner?" she would sit down and draw in the street sign, stop sign, fire hydrant, and so forth. 9/5

Today I started volunteering in Em's class, reading with kids one-on-one. I read about snakes with Brett and sharks with Sean and snowflakes with Alejandra, then asked Mrs. Archambault if I could finish up with Em. She read me a chapter in her latest Magic Tree House book (she has read 3 or 4 during reading times already since the start of school!). I was impressed with how well she read with expression, noticing commas and exclamation points and question marks. She also skipped & mispronounced much fewer words than when we read at bedtime! I had been skeptical when she told me all the MTH books she'd read, since I knew she still stumbled and had to work on comprehension at night. Now I know she's just pooped after a long day & when she's fresh it's a different story! 9/6


Sarah got her hair cut! She had been talking about shorter hair ever since I started talking about it for me. We checked many times if that is what she really wanted, and she said yes. So Miss Kari gave her a shoulder-length cut! No more corkscrews in the back, just a nice, curvy bob. Since Sarah wanted bangs (just like Emily) but we were uncertain about a blunt bang with her curly hair, Miss Kari found a way to sneak some in by cutting the hair in front down at an angle from her temple. "Like Lana Turner!" says Miss Kari! Sarah's hair still curls and spirals in front so Mommy is still happy! Sarah herself is thrilled and looks like a really big kid. 9/3

Bill was mowing the lawn when we left for Miss Kari's, and Sarah said, "The grass is getting a haircut, too!"

Sarah has a playdate at her friend Addie's. When I go to pick her up, I ask Ruben, "How'd it go?" and he said, "She's an angel!" 9/4

Sarah helped with Emily's homework on our walk around the block by reading the letters on the street signs to Emily, who then could write them down on her map. Sarah could sound out most of them herself. When she read "Eastman," she said, "Maybe it's because we're on the east side of the world." 9/5