Friday, July 29, 2011


I was trying to get some pictures from our vacation onto the blog.  But guess what?  I hit a snowball- like when you go to turn off the water in the bathroom, and before you know it you are reorganizing the linen closet.

Tried to copy pictures from camera to computer..... computer was full.... went to copy files to the external hard drive....  realized it was a big mess of files.... started to clean it out and organize everything.... ended up spending 3 hours working on it all, and not even close to downloading my pictures.

There is some good news:  The external hard drive is organized, and I may actually be able to find things when I look for them.  Like this picture of Jack at birth that I have been trying to find for years:
He was SMALLER THAN A DOLL!  Look at those heads.  Amazing.

The bad news is that I don't think I have any pictures from 2007.  At all.  Unless I have them mislabeled somehow (entirely possible).  Vacation pictures will be coming.  Eventually.  In the meantime, please feel free to comment on my tiny doll baby.

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

The Airlines Are Messing With Me

$25.00 to check a bag?  My cheap self just can't do it.

We have 5 ticketed passengers, which means we each get one carry-on bag and one personal bag.  Do the math- that is 10 bags.  Space isn't so much the issue- all of our things fit just fine in those 10 (TEN!) bags.

But the problems are many.
--- Carrying 10 bags through the airport.  Yuck!  The kids help a little (mostly with the ones that are easy to carry, leaving the big heavy awkward ones for Kydon and I), but still.  10 bags carried by 2 people through tiny little airplane isles isn't really the greatest experience I've ever had.

--- Keeping up with them all.  The trunk of the rental car was packed full- we should be good to go, right?  Too bad we left a bag in every place we stayed.  One is being shipped, one we had to go back for.  Seriously, who can keep up with that many bags when dealing with sleep deprivation and over activity x 5? 

And now, a new problem.  All 10 bags, full of dirty clothes and random items and everything you can imagine are staring me in the face- just waiting to be unpacked, cleaned out and put away.  Usually 3 is enough to make me tired.  10 is just ridiculous! 

I keep telling myself "just one at a time", but then I decided to blog instead. 

Monday, July 18, 2011

Today I am....

--Grateful for my cute niece who is helping Abigail conquer boredom, therefore allowing me to get some things done!

--Letting the boys play wii.  I wasn't going to let them, but then Abigail and Caroline were playing so nicely, and I thought- why not let them play and then I won't have to parent for a little while?  :)

--Packing and folding laundry to get ready for our trip to ID.

--Finishing up some emails and projects before I leave.

--Amazed that I perfectly planned the food so that we have enough food for healthy, yummy dinners while we are here and the fridge will be totally empty by tomorrow.  Okay, it was probably mostly luck, but still- seeing the fridge empty out on its own is pretty cool.

--Trying to pack every single thing we will need for an entire week and not pack anything we won't need.  Yeah- good luck with that.

--Getting excited to head out West!

Thursday, July 14, 2011


I just announced to the kids that this was the time in the afternoon when Mommy takes a nap while the kids do the dishes and clean up the house.

They didn't buy it.

But then, a few minutes later, Abigail came up and said "Mommy, can you please really go to sleep right now"? 

She wouldn't tell me why she wanted me to.

And now I know that whatever I do, I absolutely cannot go to sleep.

Monday, July 11, 2011

When the TV goes off

After the morning work was done, I informed the kids that we would not be watching TV today.  Yikes.  Sometimes I just get tired of it, and I also notice that when the box is on, the behaviour is worse.  So today we are going to find other things to do. 

Abigail has many ideas of things to do.  First I said no to the lemonade stand, then I said no to the garage sale (even though I wouldn't have to do *anything*)!  Finally, when she wanted to make a tattoo stand, I agreed. 

Tattoos- only 25 cents!

 With a Civil War show for an extra 25 cents!  (But I found out later that if you want two soldiers in your show, you have to fork over an extra quarter.  Bait and switch at age 7).
 I actually thought the tattoos were quite clever- she got a piece of tape, colored on the sticky side, then stuck it to you to transfer the color, and when the tape was removed....
 Wah-lah!  Can you see my bracelet tattoo?  Quite a bargain at 25 cents!
 She did a necklace on herself.
 Now for the show.  Aidan has been estatic to have one more piece to add to his Union Army uniform- a real union hat (thanks to Granny and Grandpa). 
 There was fierce combat.
 Guerilla warfare...
 Wounds and injuries...
 A lot of running, shooting, ducking, and scampering...

 It really was quite the entertainment for only 50 cents...

 At the end, the confederacy was defeated and the union won.

 The tattoo artist had assisted to make very real-looking wounds and blood.

When the show was over, we discovered that when tattoo artists have no one else to tattoo, they turn their attention to themselves.

Friday, July 8, 2011

Learning to swim

One of the very first things we did this summer was take some swimming lessons.  We had our first ones last summer, so this year was more of a refining and learning some strokes.  It was a good thing for my 3 fearless fish, because we have been in the pool as much as possible this year!

 Isn't this boy cute?  They all 3 just LOVE the water.  And when it is hot, humid and miserable outside, going to the pool is the perfect way to cool off.
 Abigail really shone in her lessons this year.  She learned all of the basic strokes, and her coach said she didn't really need lessons anymore- just more practice, so we are planning on joining a swim team next summer!
 Jack loves the water.  He will do all sorts of crazy flips and turns and dives.
 All 3 love the dive sticks where they drop a toy in the water then get to dive in and retrieve it off the bottom of the pool.  They didn't really love the swim lessons, but it did teach them some good techniques that they use.
 Abigail looked so great doing all these swim strokes!
 But the very favorite is jumping- either off the diving board or off the edge.
 Talk about crazy!  I loved how much fun they have doing this! 
Abigail tried hard to concentrate on her form... she improved, but needs a little more practice!

The pool has been so fun this year- we almost always see friends when we go, and I love that I can finally sit and read a book when I feel like it, or jump in and swim laps or play with the kids when I feel like doing those things.  Fun for all of us- can't beat that!

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Notes for Next April

A few notes to myself, to be opened next April:
  1. The last week of school is a wash for me.  Between all the parties and volunteering and last minute things that need to be done, I better plan on all of MY projects being finished and wrapped up by the second-to-last week of school. 
  2. Forget signing up for all the camps.  The kids enjoy them, but it isn't as much fun as it seems, and the money would be better spent on: A) a museum or other membership that we can enjoy during the heat, and B) a weekend vacation for the whole family to enjoy.
  3. Don't be scared of summer.  Yes, the kids are home all day every day, but after a few days, we all figure out the rhythm and routine and it becomes really, really fun.
  4. 2 weeks before school ends, give the house a good scrubbing, because it probably won't happen again until Augst.
  5. As long as we have a pool pass, summer will be fun for all of us... especially now that the kids can play while mama reads a good book!  Be sure to have a good list of books to read.
  6. Also, next April, start making a bunch of freezer meals.  All the running and managing and playing really wears Mama out, and way too many nights were spent eating out simply because I was worn out.  Freezer meals would ensure an easy dinner, and an oven with a timer means we can be gone all afternoon and come home to a hot meal.
What notes do *you* have for yourself?  Any tips or advice for me?