Saturday, September 19, 2015

7QTs - Crafting Wins, Show-and-Tells, and Fantastic Fridays

Busy-ness abounds... 

--- 1 ---

We have been adjusting to life with nightly homework. Seriously it is only a page or two of letters and numbers plus one crafty thing a week. Very manageable but I'm not here to debate the necessity of homework in Kindergarten

One afternoon though E did a noticeably poor job on a page and I seriously erased a good 2/3 of the page and had her redo it. I think she was a bit mad at me but sloppy work now means sloppy work later.

And you know what, when she had to do the same page of numbers a week later how do you think that quality was the FIRST time around?

Let's just say that lesson was learned in one go. Let's hope she doesn't forget it : )

In other #homeworkwins

I went to get E's first couple sets of sight words laminated - mainly because the notecards I bought at Target (Target brand) were as thin as paper. I know I need these to hold up for at least this school year and hopefully R and M (and new bebe!) will have the same Kindergarten teacher so we could conceivably use these for several years. Plus the cost of laminating them was not terrible and it saved me the hassle of in-home-laminating aka stacking 3 cards together (yep they were that flimsy) and taping them with clear Duct Tape. 

Oh and if you missed the latest post on just how crafty our family is... check it out

Though I think this might further my point:

E had to do some quick coloring and gluing this week and of course we are down to the DREGS of the glue and I kept banging the bottle up-side-down on the table WILLING that glue to come out and it would so after enough banging, I finally stuck my finger in the bottle and got that glue out myself! Just for the record E wanted to do it but I wouldn't let her - imagine that! - but she did put the pieces in place. 

--- 2 ---

In other random news, E and I mailed off our hair donation one day after school. That PO trip took place after we detoured to the warehouse to visit Nani (and I had to stop for work). I LOVE working for a small company where I can take my kid(s) when necessary. E got to see (and smell) the dried tobacco, watch an 18-wheeler get loaded, check out some different farm equipment and see the fertilizer that I sell. It was a mini-field trip!

I wished I had let her help me package it up but it didn't really dawn on me until later. 

--- 3 ---

We have had some FANTASTIC weather lately and we've been outside as much as our schedule will allow

Yay for longsleeve tops and shorts on the bottom!

I will say that getting people dressed in the morning - or at least approving or advising on dress - is tough when it is 45 degrees when we leave the house. Low 50s for the prayer line at school. 60s for preschool drop-off and 80s for most of the day. It seems excessive to bring a coat everyday thus the van is littered with coats for those 'just in case' mornings. 

--- 4 ---

E had a really busy week... 

Which included giving American Heritage Girls a try, soccer and a dress down day at school. She was so excited about her dress down day, I woke her up and the FIRST thing she said was - Mama today is dress down day! Yay for Papa going to the HSA meeting which earned her that. She wore her most colorful dress and bow and she even slept in the bow so we had to do a swap the next morning.

For show and tell she had to bring in 5 small items and of course the infamous Legos had to go. I might have said a quick prayer that they make it to school in tact.  

--- 5 ---

R had her first show and tell EVER and guess what she brought.... 

She had talked about bringing in one acorn but Olaf was the final answer!

R and M enjoyed an evening together while Papa was a AHG with E

I think the squirrels could entertain the girls just as much as Curious George and the squirrels are way more interactive!

--- 6 ---

Little Miss M... 

She's in a super cute stage and she knows it

And she's got a mind and attitude of her own : ) 

--- 7 ---

Yesterday was such a peaceful, unscheduled afternoon and evening. The girls played outside. They FINALLY got to play with their friend from next door. We ate pizza. They got to watch a show and they went to bed. It was a calm end to a wild week...

That's all folks!

Thursday, September 17, 2015

T-Minus 21 Days...

It is always hard for me to wrap my mind around a new baby's arrival. I remember with E thinking okay this is reading happening but I couldn't really envision what life would be like (during or) post-L&D because I haven't ever done this before.

And I believe I suffer from the same syndrome each time.

I don't have any idea what life will look like in 21 or 28 days or somewhere in between because we are just living life to the fullest everyday - whether it is school or church or soccer or eating meals or reading books or cleaning up or sitting outside or spending time with family and friends - we just soak it up. Sure there are some not-so-great parts. Of course I yell at the kids more than I should but that's not what is remembered.

Take for example a few nights ago, Papa was at his Bible Study so the girls and I hovered around the couch and we each got to pick out a book (including me). Sure I could have said one and done book and gotten everyone in bed 35 minutes sooner but sometimes (most times) a little breaking of the rules and extending of bedtimes might just be worth. Though I will say last night we had a similar situation and story time got nixed because the girls were exhausted from soccer practice plus R did not nap one second yesterday afternoon plus E is just generally needing more sleep (as she melted down earlier over 'not being able to cut out her cat' homework). 

SO... where does all this leave bebe #4.

Honestly I have no idea.

Will our world be changed? Yes - and for the better.
Will we survive? - Of course - we've done new baby before

But I just don't know what it will look like.

Having been induced with #3 at 41 weeks there was no great race to the hospital (except that false alarm) - no sense of - Oh my goodness I'm having the bebe on the side of the road. So I'm more than a bit anxious to see how labor pans out and hopefully in a hospital room as peacefully as labor can go : )

Then there's the whole boy/girl thing. Really, really. Lee and I both have written off this baby being a boy - which is fine, right? I mean a boy would be the only surprise for me at this point - which I guess we like surprises since we did not find out boy/girl 17 weeks ago.

No need for this color, right?

I'm kind of disappointed in Lands End color this season. We already have a pink, yellow and purple and when M was born they had this great orange color (fall bebe) but then there was purple so purple it was. I think this baby will have this silver-ish color unless something new (either color or gender: ) comes up between now and a month. 

Side note, the medium totes are fantastic diaper bags/ thrown everything into this bag for a day - I'm not paid to say that but if you are looking for a good baby gift for someone who doesn't like their current diaper bag - hook a mama up with one - with the zipper top

And what the heck about the names? I can say I really like both sets of names that we have picked -  I couldn't say I was 100% on board with M's name at this point when I was pregnant with her. I agreed to it of course but then I got to thinking about it and I would have changed it on the spot in the delivery room. BUT, now I love it and I think it definitely fits her. For this baby, the girl name could be an easy pick/guess and I think people will 'get it'/see it - it is fairly predictable. The boy name on the other hand (which we won't be needing anyway, right? : ) I think people are going to think ??? really. Really??? Very Catholic. Very Biblical but - how'd you get that. There is a family tie to it so that makes me happy but again not going to need it so what difference does it make?

Well that's what happens when you try two other obvious boy names on for size with previous pregnancies... my all-time favorite boy name is actually second on the list and if there were to be a delivery room switch up I'd advocate for it but Lee would advocate for name number one so this is why we seal the name deal before it is worth getting into an emotional argument over : )

So we will come home (our prayer is always for a happy and healthy baby) and then life will begin. The girls will have to go to school. Papa will have Bible Study. There will be soccer games and practices. There will be homework. There will be eating. There will be playing. There will be arguments over things I will never understand. Everything is the same but different with a new person tossed into the mix.

I will go ahead and put this out there - there are two big events in October that I will be missing out on because of this baby's arrival:

1. A friend's ordination. We happened (I'm sure not by chance) to meet at World Youth Day in Germany 10 years ago. I had just really started getting into the eastern Catholic side of the Church and the group I was with was a very western Latin Mass group. When I told the leader I was exploring the East they said, Oh you have to meet 'Joe from England'. Well I did and 10 years later - after he came to our wedding and spent a Christmas with our family - he will be ordained in a few weeks. Can I tell you how bummed that I cannot travel to Ohio for that? (I suppose I could but I'm not one to play with fire)

2. A friend's wedding. This wedding goes down as wedding #2 in the history of weddings I missed because of babies. Now this is Lee's best friend. He's E's godfather. So yeah... He is kind of important in our family. (I missed E's godmother's wedding when I was pregnant with her and in hindsight I totally should have gone - so yeah important peeps). Could I travel with a 2 week old to the wedding? Maybe if it wasn't a plane trip or a 13 hr car ride away. I am quite sure my mental health could be damaged if I went though. Who knows if this baby will be a good sleeper or a not good sleeper.  A need-to-be-walked or a need-to-be-swung bebe? Plus the logistics of taking a newborn somewhere added onto the impending cold season in which the germ-a-phob in me rears its head and needs to sanitize everything.

So my thoughts are swirling. I'm wondering if we can just delay this whole labor thing until about 2016 but I'm quite sure that won't happen. I'm thrilled at the thought of running again. I cannot tell you how badly I just want to shoot off and jog a couple miles. I am ready to not be pregnant and there are implications (like a newborn) that have to be reckoned with.

I asked Lee if he thought we should put the infant carrier in the car - his response? - in a few weeks. Then I reminded him that 'in a few weeks' might just be a little too late : )

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Wednesday, September 16, 2015

Crafty McCrafters

I'll just throw it out there that I am not an overly crafty person. I'm not creative by any means and if I'm going to do a craft I need CLEAR direction. 

Crafting with kids... not my thing either. Why? It is generally messy with a side of sticky glue. Not my activity BUT... preschool homework project definitely broke me into the crafting with kids thing so I'm up for a good craft here and there. Plus I'm one to take one for the team... though maybe just maybe Papa will have to oversee a crafting assignment and you'd better believe that will be properly documented : )

E LOVES crafty homework so this was totally up her alley...

It began with reading Chrysanthemum and the Name Jar (thanks Amazon for that suggestion as E liked that one over the book that went along with the assignment/what they read in class). Reading a book or two with a craft helps me get focused and I'm always up for a {short} book.

If you have a young child read the Name Jar. It is really neat and you'll probably have to Google how to pronounce the main character's name. : )

Okay... back to the homework

No paintbrush? No paint dish... No problem. We improvise around here (and add to supply list later)

We had gone to Hobby Lobby to get some supplies a few days before. R got some stuff too because crafty homework is in her near future too. Seriously didn't dawn on me that we didn't have a paintbrush or a spot to dip paint... Blame bebe #4

I vetoed the neon paint pack but E still went with yellow background : ) 

Olaf help with EVERYTHING around here... 

Onto the decoration part!

Seeing that she is in kindergarten I really wanted to ***try*** to stay out of the bulk of the craft. For the name I had her write each letter and then I made it outlined/bolded so there would be space for the decorations. 

The starting point... 

Gorilla gun WILL NOT take the place of the blasted glue gun

I own a glue gun. I had seen it the day before upstairs when we were organizing. E and I go up the afternoon before the project is due to get the supplies and the glue gun. 

No glue gun. ^10000 because I looked
Enter gorilla glue. 
It wouldn't bind the felt to the paper or the pom-poms either. 
E - Why don't you ask Papa where it is? 
Me - He won't know
{send several frantic texts to borrow a glue gun because a good part of this HAS to be done BEFORE soccer practice}
Attempt to use Elmers... better than nothing

So excited to use the glitter glue completely un-helped

Well it turns out that Papa knew EXACTLY where the glue gun was and HE put it in a box of storage stuff in the dormer next to the craft table. #grrrrrrr

So here's what she came up with... the pasta and the lentils just came out of the pantry after dinner because I was too tired and she was too cranky to get involved in searching for stuff outside (like the sandy A). 

The stamps (background decoration) were something she had been begging to do the night before so the morning of when everything was dry I told her she could stamp away once she was ready to go. Not a huge fan of them but I am letting her own the project so whatever!

Now for E's all-time craziest craft homework... let's not forget that pink turkey!

Monday, September 14, 2015

R Starts Preschool... This Year : )

Just so R has her first day of school on the blog and she can't say I left her out just because she's the middle child here's how it went down... 

Second time making waffles in two weeks? 

Yes I could have pulled extra ones out of the freezer that I made for E's first day but I'm a glutton for extra work so fresh waffles it was - lovely clean counter, no? 

Giving the van a once over because we had church the night before.

Teacher made a list... we checked it twice. 

Ceremonial new shoes. I think I was more excited by the prospect of her not having to wear those BLASTED shoes with laces that had been driving me NUTS for the past several weeks... OCD? Quite possibly

Lunch/snacks packed #forthewin

But not for the win was the state of the kitchen when we left. Dishwasher was not unloaded. Mac and cheese lunch remnants was on the stove. Waffle iron had been overfilled (rookie mistake, I know) and was still overflowing. Syrup dotted the table. Breakfast dishes were left in their spots on the table. 

That is what taking 5 minutes away from my mornings - in the name of pictures of course - will do. I promise I am a scientist when it comes allowing time to get out the door. 


So excited to have the spotlight!

Cheesing it up!

Because the sibs were there too... 

Such a happy colorful 3 yr old! - (here's 2 yr old first day)

Enter the skeptic

She's carrying a flower she picked for me : ) 

She and her friend cried when the moms left - I was super super super surprised

Ever since she goes in like she owns the place. 

I never hear about too much other than they played... and played and played - and I think she says that to spite E : ) 

Sunday, September 13, 2015

7QTs - Horses, Baseball and Soccer

Same old, same new... 

--- 1 ---

E was invited to a birthday party that was at a horse stable.... Aside from being super excited about the party there was much anticipation about...


Anyhow, riding horse was a hit and I will never understand the minds of my kids but I guess that goes with the parenting territory?

--- 2 ---

After such a great neighborhood gathering the night before we were supposed to have an end of summer pool party but the weather wasn't fantastic so we relocated to our house and just had a grandparental gathering : )

The girls and I made Rice Cream Pie... 

The crust materials

That's all the ice cream???

Deep in discussion over puzzle piece location 

The kids cannot get enough Berenstein Bears... Mama and Papa can so who better to read it than Jibbe

E and Grammy reading The Name Jar - it came up on Amazon when I bought a book for E's homework and she ended up really liking it

So good : ) 

--- 3 ---

E finished her second Kindergarten workbook - I think it was Brain Quest or something like that - and it was just over 300 pages. She's been working on it all summer and this is what she picked out for completing it: 

There was much thought put into this purchase. She ALMOST left it and was going to put the prize $$$ on a gift card so she could save up for a bigger set BUT you know how it is being 5.

She surprisingly did the bulk of it by herself. She still likes to skip a step or part of a step here and there and I'm wondering if that didn't happen this time. As you can see we had to 'engineer' the plane a bit taller in the middle (note the bottom of the nose and top of the tail have gaps) because the people did not fit in the cabin area. Well whatever... she has been playing with it and she was going to bring it for show-and-tell Friday but then we are getting off the exit for school and I hear "I forgot my show-and-tell"

A. Opps... forgot to check the calendar
B. Exactly right, you forgot it. Don't point the finger at me (though I do like to give a general reminder)
C. Can you find something in the van to bring? Haha... yes of course! Have you seen our van?

This was what the van looked like on Wednesday morning after we had church on Tuesday night and then we stopped for dinner and didn't waltz in the door until oh... say 9:50

--- 4 ---

Now if Saturday birthday party and neighborhood gathering and Sunday church and family cookout weren't enough... Monday was Labor Day and we (sans M who got to hang out with Jibbe) trekked out to a baseball game with some families from church. 

So stinkin' cute in the oversized hat

Waiting... Not so patiently for the gates to open

Big hat + big chair

Lee and I were quite impressed how much of the game they actually sat and watched

No baseball game would be complete without cotton candy (gag!)

Silly sisters

So terrified of the mascot : ) 

So we had a blast of a weekend which made getting in the groove for Tuesday's regularly scheduled school madness just that much more hard to get back to. 

--- 5 ---

See what I mean... 

R is very attentive to Olaf's nap time spot

You think it is hard being a snowman? Try being 3!

--- 6 ---

This is worthy of it's own post... 

R headed off to 3 yr old class... More pics on that later

--- 7 ---

And lastly... but not least-ly...

Soccer started this week. Practice was good until 2 of the 3 kids - that would be our kids - left the field in tears... Bets as to which one (ehem... the eldest). Also it was the first practice so it was a little crazier than usual. Fortunately Papa was there to corral in M for the bulk of practice but there are several other younger siblings on the team so she is in good company. 

Now how do you go about explaining being aggressive but not being mean about it to a 5 yr old? PLEASE... insight. E continues to be frustrated as she wants to score goals but so does every other kid out there - except for R who was messing with her shoes during our scrimmage : )