Rachel can officially read and write! OK, no, she can't do either especially well. She is still almost as likely to write a letter upside down or backwards as correctly, and she frequently confuses N, M, and W, when writing them, but she can look at the letters and sound them out and figure out the word and, if it's perfectly phonetic, she can even sound out and write down some words.
She is also very close to being able to tie her own shoes... she's been "making the cross" for months, usually "helping" me with that part of tying my shoes, but now that she has shoes with laces, she's working on making the bow and finishing it off. She's very close and seems, more or less, to understand what's going on, she just isn't quite getting the second loop to form properly. It's so amazing to watch her work on things like that.
When we picked her up from my parents' place tonight, she was working with their chinning bar. She uses it most times that she's there, but this time my father really put it up high - she could just get her hands around it - and she can actually get her feet up and over it entirely by herself! She evidently doesn't fee quite ready to let go with her hands and just hang from her knees, but I know she's close to that too. She told my parents she'd do that when she's 5. That's next September, if you're not keeping close track. Something tells me she may do it sooner than that.