Katie Anne is a super-duper big sister. We really could not ask for her to be any sweeter or more in love with SJ than she is. She loves to play with him, read to him, and show him things - she's got the sweetest little voice when she talks to him, and I love to watch them together.
Katie Anne's constantly trying to teach him things like his colors, numbers, letters, or the names of things ... today, she was coaching him to name all the vegetables and fruit in her play food set. He'll probably be a genius - or totally burnout on learning by the time he reaches kindergarten - because she loves to hold things up, name them, and say, "Can you say that? Can you say that, SJ?" She loves to play with him, too. Even though he can't participate too much yet, Katie Anne tries hard to involve him in her playtime. Here's a picture of SJ enjoying a delicious dinner of wooden food that Katie Anne prepared and served him:
Katie Anne is a big help to us in taking care of SJ, too. She will sit beside him wherever he is - Exersaucer, high chair, on the floor - and retrieve the toys he throws over ... and over ... and over without complaint. She even congratulates him for getting better at throwing things while she fetches what he's tossed over. So far, knock on wood - I've never seen her get tired of handing him back what he's thrown once. Godsend.
She has a lot of patience with him, especially when he cries - she sings to him so sweetly and strokes his arm when he's upset. She is a lifesaver in the morning - she entertains him on our bed with all his toys while we get ready for work and never complains about it. Keeping Katie Anne entertained when we were getting ready for work was so tough when she was a baby - who knew a big sister's constant attention was the answer to keeping baby happy all morning long?
Sometimes, she does bonk him on the head or pull on him too roughly, but it is always out of a good intention like wanting to show him something, give him something, take away something from him that she's deemed dangerous (and that's most of the things in the world, unfortunately for SJ), or kiss him, hug him, or generally love on him too much. As evidenced by his face in this series of pictures, SJ doesn't always appreciate the love - but 99% of the time, he's just thrilled about all the attention and adores her more than anyone else he knows.
However, there is one area of SJ care that Katie Anne cannot do at all, and it frustrates her to no end. It has driven her crazy since the minute he was born, and it still is a puzzle she wants to solve. The problem is - Why can't she carry SJ around? She would love nothing more than to hoist SJ up on her hip and walk all over the world with him. Of course, since he weighs about half what she does, that is not possible. She's been earnestly working on a solution, and she's yet to figure out a way that she can really do it. But, where there's a (strong) will, there's a way, and she did find a little fake-out way to pretend to be holding him. Now she loves to do this all ... the ... time!
She sits on the bed, pulls SJ over to her side, and puts his arms and legs around her like she's holding him on her hip. Then, she clutches him around his back (and occasionally around his head) and pretends that she's holding him by herself. If this last picture doesn't show how excited she is to be hanging out with her little brother, I don't know what does!