Tuesday, August 30, 2011

281 days till summer vacation...

School is back in session.
And we now have a 4th, 3rd, and 1st grader.

For the first time since my kids entered the school system, it feels kind of tidy.  All 3 big kids will go all day...every day.  No running back and forth to pre-school, no 2.5 day kindergarten to keep track of,  no waking up babies to run to school, or trying to get out between my 2 opposite nappers to get some errand run quickly before the others get home.  Just the same schedule, every day.  And 2 little gals that are old enough to theoretically both only require a nap in the afternoon.

I now own the morning.  And let me tell you, it's pretty liberating.

I'm going to enjoy this quiet year.  I am looking forward to getting involved in a regular Bible study again, coffee with friends, chipping away at all the projects on my list, and watching my 2 little gals play together, as Stella will go to pre-school next year.




Naturally, I made Sydney a new skirt and headband for the first day:)

This 4th grader was a bit too cool to let his mom come in and take a picture by his desk, so we settled for his locker :)

Happy Tuesday all~

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Sunday, August 21, 2011

so long, sweet rapunzel

If there's one thing we know how to grow around here...it's hair.


And I'm not sure what it is, but I have such a hard time cutting it.

 Perhaps I'm afraid they will look older, or I will hate how the cut turns out, but most probably, I know that I'm cutting off those sweet baby curls that I so adore.

Remember Dylan?

Well, at 3 and a half, Stella had yet to recieve her first hair cut. 

We called her Rapunzel.

It was getting so ridiculously long, that she had to wear it up every single day....and even in pigtails, it still swung around into her cereal bowl :)
Have I mentioned that she screams every time we wash it?

Well this past week, after washing her crusty hair, I finally gave in and cut it. 



And I love it. 

 Simply darling.

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

13 years

Tim and I celebrated 13 years of marriage last week. 


We were able to get away to a bed and breakfast this past weekend for 24 hours to celebrate our love. 

We walked along the beach hand in hand, peeked in all the little shops the quaint downtown had to offer, ate 3 square meals alone with both lighthearted bantor and serious conversation, watched a little cable tv, and confirmed that if I every become a hoarder Tim has permission to send me away and take care of it :),  ate ice cream without any extra licks of drippy bubblegum flavorburst or superman mixed in, sat outside and sipped delightful coffee that I assured Tim must have undoubtedly been shipped directly from South America for the price we paid, played tennis just the 2 of us, and re-connected. It was a positively delightful change of pace.

And unfortunately, my camera never made it out of the van.

So, in honor of our anniversary, I am going to share the squirrel story. A story of a beady eyed little pest, love restored, and a glimpse into our unglued life.

Here goes....

It all began on a hot June evening.
June 30 @ 10pm to be exact.

The previous few weeks had been ridiculously busy, because it's just that time of year after all, leaving very little time for conversation or closeness. Tim and I were in a "funk",  having cordial conversation, but that's about as extensive as it got.  I'm a quality time kinda girl:)  We were looking forward to a long weekend away camping the following day, to re-connect as a family.

It was 10pm and I was finally heading into the livingroom to sit down for a few minutes, having just completed the task of tucking the children into bed. Have a I mentioned this summer schedule, or lack there of, is kicking my butt?

Well, I was just about to sit down in Tim's trusty old recliner, when out of the corner of my eye, I saw something scurry across the livingroom carpet towards the slider door. Naturally I screamed, certain it was a mouse, and cursing our cat Darla for allowing such vermin to sneak into the house.

Well, I followed the creature to the slider, and upon closer look, I realized it wasn't a mouse, but rather it looked more like a chipmunk, or maybe even a baby squirrel. Oddly, this new discovery gave me a bit of ease. I promptly opened the slider in an effort to shoo the little bugger out the door.  But, with the speed of Mighty Mouse, the little rodent darted back and forth across our living room in a full speed frenzy.  After a bit of this, she dashed over to our sunporch area, behind our green chair.

Phoebe (our dog, that is clearly more looks than brains)  promptly perked her ears, and followed chase over to the green chair in the corner.  She sniffed, and pawed, and sniffed and pawed, and sniffed and pawed at the chair some more.  I grabbed the phone, and promptly perched myself on a bar stool, certain Phoebe had it trapped, and the situation was under control for a bit.  I called Tim to let him know that there was a chipmunk in the house, and that he had to come home...now.

For 20 minutes I sat perched on my stool, my eyes, never leaving the chair for long. When I finally heard the sound of the trusty old diesel pulling into the driveway, I breathed a sigh of relief.

Tim walked in and set his lunch box down, and prompty assesed the situation before even taking his boots off.  Long story short, our dog is a fool.  At some point during those 20 minutes, the chipmunk escaped from behind the chair.  After tearing the area apart, dumping toys, books, shaking out the green chair,  you name it, it was apparant the little rodent was no longer in the sunporch area...though Phoebe still waited, sniffing and panting and drooling about.

At which point, Tim directed his attention to the kitchen, which is adjacent to the sunporch area.  After an extensive search, all that was uncovered was new dust.

About an hour later, after an exhaustive all-inclusive inspection of the kitchen, living room, and sunporch area, we gave up on the sneaky little rodent.  Tim had not yet laid eyes on it, and was begining to question what I saw in the first place.
 
Though I didn't like it one little bit, we went to bed around midnight, with the assumption that the little varmint was more scared of us, and we would figure it all out in the morning.

We climbed into bed, and after about 5 minutes, I heard a noise by our bedroom slider.  It was louder than the buzz of bugs hitting the outside of the screen. It sounded like something running.  And I just knew it was the beady eye'd little monster.

I promptly awoke Tim, turned on the light, and caught the slightest movement inside my closet through the open doors.

"It's in my closet!"  I shouted to Tim as he bolted awake.

He jumped up, made eye contact with the beady little monster on the top shelf, and grabbed the stick that wedges in our slider door.  And he proceeded to poke around my clothes with the stick. 

Nothing.

He then began taking piles of clothes off my shelves, dumping them on the floor, and giving them a thorough beating. 

No creature to be found.
He got to the last pile, and the beady eye'd twitchy little rodent jumped down and scurried out of our room towards the living room, faster than we could blink.  We followed chase, and caught sight just as it's tail disappeared underneath our couch, at which point Tim confirmed that it was indeed a baby squirrel.....and that I wasn't making this whole ordeal up :)

Upon sneaking up, the squirrel was no longer under the couch.  It had disappeared again.  After a while of searching the entire area all over again, we gave up and went back to bed.  It was well after midnight and we were tired. Surely the rodent would at least stay out of room now, right?

Well, while Tim once again snored logs, I just couldn't sleep. It really bothered me. Why of all places did it choose my closet to hide in?  After a bit, I heard the noise again, grabbed the light, and shouted Tim awake.

And while Tim is a pretty laid back guy when it comes to me, he was clearly starting to get annoyed.  He was exhausted, and he could sleep just fine with a little noise and rodent running about.  He wished I could too.

He looked around for a bit, found nothing, and said we were going back to bed, and promptly turned off the light.

We did, and I willed myself to try to go to sleep.  It was well into the morning side of the night by now.  I tried to tell myself that the little squirrel wasn't evil.  He wasn't trying to taunt us with his beady little eyes and twitchy nose, he was just frightened and trying to find his way out.

After about 5 minutes of laying there willing myself to sleep, Tim bolted straight up and turned the light on.

"It just ran across my face!" he shouted, along with a few other choice words.

At which point, Tim let out his battle cry and declared war on the squirrel. 

He may be a laid back guy, but he's also a man of his word.  He doesn't give up when he puts his mind to something, and has the patience to stick it out and win.  Some people might call him stubborn.  So I knew at this point we were in this for the long haul. We would not be going back to bed before this rodent was either outside, or dead.... and I was assuming the latter.

Tim promptly closed both doors to our bedroom, sealing the exits, and once again grabbed his trusty stick.

I sat perched in the middle of our bed for safety, playing eye spy.  I once again saw movement in my closet and began pointing and shreaking, as any good wife does @ 1:30am while looking for a squirrel in her bedroom.  Tim told me to keep my eyes on it, while he started poking around my hanging clothes again with the stick. 

Nothing.

Tim slowly started grabbing the remaining piles of my folded clothes on my top shelf, and dumping them to the ground.

After this process was complete, he started in on my hanging clothes.  He would grab about 5 hangers full, dump them on the ground, and give them a good wallop....to ensure there was no squirrel hiding out in the folds.

Nothing.

Have I ever mentioned to you that I have a lot of clothes?  It's ridiculous.

There was a very delicate balance of sanity in our room at this point.  It was after 2 am, we were both exhausted, we had been held hostage by the little creature for hours, and watching Tim dump out the contents of my closet made me want to weep.  However, I knew better than to say anything, because truthfully, he was doing this for me.

Well, we were almost through my hanging clothes, when I noticed a tiny little mound of movement as Tim was beating my shirts to a pulp.

The squirrel shot out and dove under our bed.

Naturally, I screamed again, and moved back to the center of the bed for safety.  Ask Tim to do his impersination of my startled scream sometime...he is spot on.

My cedar chest and end tables were moved to form a blockade, our entire bed was shoved to the side, pillows and laundry baskets were stacked up in an effort to trap the evil little pest.

It truly must have been a sight.  Tim running around our bedroom @ 2:30am with a giant stick...piles of dishevelled clothes strewn about as far as the eye could see....and furniture moved, only to display the areas of carpet that embarrassingly hadn't been vaccuumed in years.

Well, the squirrel darted back and forth ....and to shorten this story up, after a long frantic chase, Tim finally won. 

There was just no getting the squirrel out the door.  He was too quick and nervous, most likely in the same mental state that Tim and I were in at this point in the game.

Tim threw the dead squirrel out on the deck, and climbed in bed.  He turned out the lights to what now looked like a battle field, and we both breathed a sigh of relief.

As we lay in bed in the dark, we had a good chuckle over the nights events.

It really is a shame the kids never woke up.

And wouldn't you know, when forced to work together, all communication barriers were broken down:)

One might say that beady eye'd little squirrel was just what we needed.

Happy Wednesday all!

Monday, August 15, 2011

crash course


What better way to spend a Monday afternoon, than racing matchbox cars down the rockclimbing wall, and watching your dog run off with them every single time.

Happy Monday all~

Friday, August 12, 2011

my kid

He's pretty certain he'll be the coolest 4th grader in town with these bad boys on his teeth.

And after spending the summer dragging 5 kids to consultation after consultation, this mom couldn't be more thrilled either.

Happy Friday all!

Monday, August 8, 2011

Summer is kicking my butt.

It is.

It really, really, is.

Don't get me wrong, I am honestly not ready for the kids to go back to school just yet.  We are having a great summer, and I'm trying to enjoy every single day. 

However, Tim is super busy at work right now, which puts me on my own a fair share of the time. And while I can hold everything together pretty well, it slowly wears on me as the week goes along. By Thursday I usually start to unravel, because I just can't seem to catch a break....and the little things become colassal.

I can't decide if I get more overwhelmed taking my fab five around town with me for every single errand, or staying home all day.... taking Ellery off the counter for the 14th time in an hour, unpealing panty liners opened up and pasted onto the cupboards like stickers, breaking up fights, listening to screaming every time I move, weeping over my unceasing filthy floors and disheveled rooms, just getting lunch cleaned up, only to discover it's time to get dinner rolling, and walking through the woods with a baby on my hip calling Phoebe's name, yet again.

I've tried my best to pack in the fun.
But inevetably, the kids are divided into the "big kids" and the "little girls".  Naps are modified, and as sure as the sky is blue....my blood pressure rises, no matter what we do.  We leave the library in a hurry because 1 gal is dumping books, and the other crying, I am wanted in 3 different places at the beach....you fill in the activity.

I love my kids with all my heart, but let's face it....kids are hard.

I so badly want to be the best mom I can be for them....to be understanding, patient, firm and loving, a good listening ear, a teacher, a heart nurturer...etc. You know, pretty much all of those darn fruits of the spirit .  It is my daily prayer.  But life can be so challenging and wearisome sometimes, can't it?  It brings me to my knees every single day. I do know someday I will mourn this season of life, because I truly do enjoy it.  The saying "The days are long, but the years fly by" rings oh so true to me these days.

And now that I've given you a lengthy explanation  as to why I just can't seem to get it together to blog these days, I will leave you with some pictures from our weekend. 

What could be more fun than taking 7 people out in a flat bottom boat designed for 5?  Where we live, we are fortunate to be within minutes of a lake in every direction.  Sunday afternoon we took a nice little boat ride, fished, and chatted over doritos and juice boxes.  Good times.