drinking like a Montessori, revisited


I have such a vivid memory of the time Wren learned to drink from a real cup (instead of a sippy cup). I don’t think I had even considered it, but she was going to enroll in a Montessori school a couple mornings and she had to know how to drink from a cup. I was surprised at how quickly she learned to drink from it and I was thrilled to see how proud she was of herself. It was one of the first times that the basic idea of Montessori hit home: independence promotes confidence.

Now that the second child is here, parenting is a lot more intuitive and involves a lot more watching and learning from her. Phoebe has been putting a cup up to her mouth and drinking in the bath a lot lately, yuck. When she’s in the kitchen, she’ll often reach for a cup and pretend to drink. Today Wren and I decided that she would help Phoebe learn to drink water from her cup. They both were so proud! And wet.

I had an “aha!” moment today with these two. I’ve been struggling to find things the three of us can do together. Usually it involves Phoebe getting into Wren’s stuff (paint, stickers, puzzle, book) and Wren screaming at Phoebe. Fun! And then I listened and watched and quietly directed, but it didn’t take much from me. Voila! Birdie number two begins to drink from a cup, thanks to her sister.


I’m so excited to explore this more: empowering Wren to help Phoebe explore the world in a meaningful way. Nothing is forced, just a natural relationship that needs a bit of nurturing from Mama.

sisters today – 1

There are a lot of people doing a weekly portrait series of their children this year, inspired in large part by Jodi and her beautiful, natural portraits of her children. I’m going to try and do a sisters portrait series this year – perhaps more of a challenge for me to get the two together? Are you pushing yourself to do anything different this year with your photography?

Day 1: Sisters at Play




art for her sister


All by herself (remember “do it SELF!!!”) Wren made a picture for Phoebe “of Phoebe in the sandbox.” I didn’t even know she was doing it until it had already been completed and Wren was giving it to Phoebe. Such a sweet moment. Every day there’s some sweetness. Tempered with Wren screaming at Phoebe, “stop following me!” or “stop looking at me!” or getting really angry because Phoebe’s into all of her stuff. It’s hard living with babies in your stuff! I know.

nose kisses

Because sometimes your kids are just so darn cute it makes your cheeks hurt. This was an especially sweet moment this morning. Phoebe just loves her sister’s attention, including most of her wild antics. I’m not so hot on the antics, but I can see why a certain toddler just can’t help but squeeze her baby sister a little too hard…

sister wonder

Wren has a sister. Phoebe has a sister. We have two girls. This is really just beginning to sink in with us. Part of the fun of not finding out the baby’s gender is the excitement when the baby is born and all of these thoughts are fresh and sink in slowly over the course of the first few up-most-of-the-night days. Because I don’t have a sister, I don’t know what it’s really like, but I’m so grateful for the possibilities of Wren and Phoebe’s sister relationship. I look forward to discovering ways to nurture it over the years and encouraging them to find a rhythm that’s uniquely their own. Maybe they’ll find their own language together? Inside jokes. Creating a world all their own. Giggling about something in the other room that has nothing to do with me.  Screaming and pulling hair… ahh, sisters! Let the wild, lovely ride begin!