Friday, January 6, 2012

The joy of being Kinlee


She makes me smile, she makes me yell, she makes me laugh… She’s Kinlee.

  • Kinlee is the Braska translator and analyzer. Braska speaks well and often, not really needing someone to speak for her at home.  But her sister will often pipe up and clarify what she said.  And she always adds a commentary on how Braska feels about it or what her motivation for the statement or request was.  Very helpful.  Or maybe just amusing, usually.  We do have to tell her regularly that she has to let Braska make her own choices and say what she wants or needs.  Braska would be happy to let Kinlee speak for her most of the time, but recently, she has taken to getting a bit miffed when KiKi interjects, yelling “It’s Braska’s turn! My turn!” 
  • Recently Braska asked for milk, KiKi said, "I'll get her milk!"  She went into the kitchen, opened the fridge, climbed up on the ledge and grabbed the milk. Then she brought it to Braska and told me, "I'll help her drink this time"  And she held it for her, Braska took a drink and said, "Thanks, Kinlee!"  Adorable.
  • She is ridiculously smart and intuitive. She can tell a person how to get just about anywhere in our local area.  Not like giving directions, but put her in the car and go, even from a different starting point, and she’ll tell you where school is and where Daddy works and where the Y is and how to get to Costco and Aldi.  She knows a full grocery list for Aldi and loves being my shopping buddy there.  She is very into feelings, and asks often how someone feels and why. She can tell you about right choices and wrong choices, and she gets very frustrated with herself when she makes “a lot of wrong choices” as she laments when she’s had a rough day. Her reading is now gone past the “1st grade level” mark.  And she’ll be 3 in just over a month.
  • She is still SO dramatic at times.  Very extreme in her own emotions.  She can get excited and happy like a full-blown party, and then totally devastated and in meltdown soon after. 
  • She is Braska’s biggest cheerleader.  She helps her with so many things, and she sounds so teacher-like when she does it.  She explains things to B, she walks her through steps of tasks, and she congratulates her and tells everyone when Braska’s done something great.
  • She is a pro at technology, which is fun to watch.  She can operate her dad’s phone, my phone, and Auntie Rachel’s iPhone, all of which are different. She can access apps on each, and now she’s into sending messages. Typing. So funny.  She loves to go to the photo galleries and scan through, reminiscing about what was happening when they were taken.  She watches the videos over and over.  She watches her favorite things on YouTube.  She is a big fan of on the computer, too.  It’s fun to see her enjoy the stories and read through them all.  She can operate the TV remote, the DVR, the VCR (yep, still have one), and the DVD player.
  • She’s very into painting right now.  Her favorite color is black. That’s what she says, and that’s what she uses. A lot.  She prefers to have blank paper, then I have to write her name in LARGE block letters, then a couple flowers at the bottom.  Then she’ll paint with watercolors for quite some time.  I did this once a couple months ago, and now it’s a must have for each painting session.
  • The kid is obsessed with Red Lobster.  She loves the sign. A lot.  She finally got to go for the first time back in November, when Auntie Rach took her there for Auntie Ju’s birthday dinner.  I didn’t go, but she tells me often about how she and Auntie Rach pretended they were gonna eat the lobsters in the big water tank. And since there’s a RL location about a mile from us at a major intersection we pass numerous times a day, she comments frequently about it and tells the stories of the birthday party dinner and the silly lobsters swimming.  If we’re traveling and there’s a RL sign on an exit “food” sign, she is all about it.  BUT—she didn’t really get into the food. Didn’t eat a whole lot.  Doesn’t care anything about that.  It’s all the experience and… well…the big RED Lobster on the sign.
  • She has great grammar for a 2-year-old, which is something I like a lot.  She uses A and AN properly, she has most of her tenses figured out, even some of the catchy ones like BRING and BROUGHT.  She asks for things with “May I please…?”  But then again she refuses to talk at times when politeness would be appreciated.
  • She has some strange fear and anxiety issues…and she can comment often about something that “frightens” her.  There are a couple red lights on TVs in our house that for some reason bother her.  She sometimes won’t walk past the playroom to get to her bedroom because the TV in there has a tiny red light on it.  “I’m frightened, Mom. I don’t like the playroom TV. Can you put my blanket back in my room, please?”  Of course, we don’t do it for her.  Sometimes we’ll tell her she can close her eyes or turn her head when she walks by.  If she’s especially tired or in a mood, one of us might stand in the doorway as she goes by.  It’s kind of funny sometimes what startles her or makes her anxious. But it’s very real to her, so we try to use it to teach, we help her work through them, and we do not make fun. 
  • The insight and the anxiety sometimes make for interesting conversations.  She was recently at Grandma C’s for a sleepover, and as the news channel that was on went to commercial, they mentioned a teaser for upcoming news on a small plane crash.  She became very concerned about what happened, why it crashed, and why they weren’t telling her how it happened.  Not in a crying/fear type of way, as I understand it, but in a need for information way.  After waiting her allotted amount of time and getting no acceptable answer from the TV, she was persistently asking Grandma C what had happened.  She asked Kinlee why she needed to know.  Kinlee said, very matter-of-factly “When I get big I’m gonna fly one of those, and I need to know how to not crash it.” 
  • The kid has one crazy sharp memory.  Amazing.  She can remember things that happened months ago, in detail.  Some things she recounts often… like the fact that almost a year ago she was feeling sick as we walked into Costco and she threw up on the floor as we were trying to get to the bathroom.  She had told me that she felt funny in her belly and that she needed help.  It upset her a lot at the time that she threw up on the floor.  Daddy taught her right about that time what vomit is.  And when we go into Costco still, she will tell me about that time, all the events and feelings, and how she is not going to “vomit” on the floor this time. “Don’t worry, Mom. I’m not going to vomit today. I don’t need to vomit right now.”
  • She will tell in full detail what happened at Y-school or at Thursday school or at Sunday school.  She shares about what each kid did, how the teachers responded, and how everyone felt about it all.  And then, if I ask her a few weeks later about the time she went to Thursday school and made a pumpkin, she will go through all the happenings again if asked. 
  • She’s been doing the big-girl potty thing for almost a year, which is very nice, but she has some strange quirks about it recently.  She has taken to going as rarely as possible.  It seems that she has one strong bladder.  And her little memory/anxiety skills have brought about big issues with public bathrooms.  We carry this with us at all times, in her little backpack, and it’s a lifesaver for both Braska and KiKi since they’re way too small to deal with a full-size public toilet. But--There was one instance, back at the end of the summer, when we were playing at a park nearby.  She went to the restroom with me after saying she needed to go.  I sat her on the toilet, (didn’t have the Primo with us) and I stepped away to the sink while she held on to the big thing.  It had an automatic flush, and it was THE LOUDEST flush I have ever heard. Think freight train under your tush. It scared her half to death.  She was screaming and trembling and hanging on for dear life.  It took her a bit to recover that day, and she has since been terrified of public toilets.  I often show her that it’s NOT an automatic flush toilet, or I promise her I’ll stay right there so it won’t flush.  But she often just refuses to go and pleads to get down.  I feel kind of bad about that one… wish I’d have thought about it and avoided that little trauma.
  • Overall, she is a lot of fun.  A lot of work. And a lot of blessings.  I’m excited for her future and I’m scared, too.  She’s going to be a challenging kiddo, and I just pray often that we raise her very well.  We aim to help her be all God designed her to be, for that is our job as parents of the gifts he has given us to care for. If handled appropriately in these early years, the girl will be a superstar at whatever she chooses to do.  Can’t wait to see it…


  1. Kinlee quote of the day:
    "I *am* a cannibal. I'm going to eat somebody's nose!"

  2. What a great update RK! Been wondering about you guys. Wishing you many blessings in the new year!

  3. She is a great little gal. She just blesses my bones. Her and Braska continually exceed all expectations.

  4. I need some potty training tips - or a complete how to would be great. I have NO idea where to start?

  5. You can put a post it note over the sensor on the auto flush toilets and they won't flush until you remove the post it. Maybe if you have her put the post it up and she sees it won't flush when she waves her hand in front of it she might feel more comfortable.


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