Lia started afternoon preschool in December. We had her moved to the afternoon class for a few reasons, but mainly because there is a 4 year old afternoon class that has girls in it! Amazingly, at least in this school district, there seems to be many more boys than girls registered for preschool. She is really enjoying the afternoon class, and coming out of her shell much more. The teachers are really pleased with her progress and acclimation into the new class.
Unfortunately, she came home the second week of December with a cold, which ended up turning into pneumonia by week's end. After a trip to urgent care, and a round of antibiotics, we got her healthy enough to play "the camel" in her preschool's Christmas play - which was a hoot! You gotta love a group of 4 year olds shouting out the lyrics to Christmas carols they don't really know. As with any group this age, the kids have short attention spans:
|Lia, far left, watching the teacher as her friend yawns...|
Preschool released for winter break right after the play, so we had a few days to catch up on our holiday decorating and traditions before Santa's big visit. On the 21st, we visited a local nursery, where Santa's reindeer come to "rest up" prior to the big night. Lia loved seeing them, but was somewhat disappointed that Rudolph was there with his red nose:
On Christmas Eve, Daddy had to work, so Lia and I decided to make some frosted sugar cookies for Santa. This year Lia helped cut out the cookies and spread the frosting and sprinkles. She did a great job! The cookies turned out awesome and Santa gobbled up the three that she chose to leave out for him that evening:
We had a lovely Christmas Eve dinner at our favorite Italian restaurant, followed by a candlelight church service, before heading home for the night. Daddy helped Lia hold her candle and her eyes were as big as saucers, but she was so proud to get to hold a candle herself this year! Christmas day my parents, uncle and sister came to our house for Christmas dinner. Lia had plenty of new toys and presents to show off to the family.
The following day, we took her out shopping, with the gift card she received from Steve's mom. It was super fun to watch her make tough decisions, pick out her gifts and hand her card to the cashier. This little girl is not hurting for toys!!! Later in the day, she posed with some of her new acquistions:
A cute sidenote: Santa brought her a baby penguin, which coos when you feed it a bottle. When we told Lia that she had a gift card she could use to buy anything else she needed/wanted that Santa might have forgotten, she says, "I want to get the baby penguin a mama and daddy. He needs a family...like you came to China to get me"... Oh, my heart! And I'll be darned if the first thing she picked out on Wednesday wasn't a penguin mama and daddy for her baby. Sweet girl. :)