Sunday, September 30, 2007

this extra[ordinary] life

Journaling: Have I ever mentioned how much I love this life? I mean really LOVE it. Every day I live through at least one moment when I realize how totally blessed I am. This day was loaded with those kind of moments. It doesn't look like much I know, by I was so taken by it - watching the 2 of you pacing the yard with your 'mowers' like Daddy; the contrast of the sun and the shadows on the ground; the reflection of the light off of your hair. Just the easiness of it all - beautiful. But I got the most joy out of watching you be you. Hair in your eyes, as usual, dirt streaked across your face, and wearing Sebastian's shoes. Not a care in the world, you marched back and forth in those too-big-for-you shoes, pushing Home Depot, mowing the grass. Not an extraordinary moment by normal standards, but so worth taking notice of. I thank God that He puts these kind of moments into every-day life, and that He has taught me to see them for what they really are...priceless. Life is made up of far more ordinary moments than extraordinary ones, and it's the quality of the every day that makes a difference. 2007.
(This was a day earlier this summer. One of the stand-outs in my mind. It was simply a great day. Laid-back. Beautiful weather. Simple, good memories. Thought I'd try to capture it.)

Saturday, September 29, 2007

We have a winner!

What a vast improvement in soccer playing from 2 weeks ago to today. Two weeks ago, Sebastian's team lost by more goals than we could keep track of. Today, they won 6-2. Sebastian did much better not falling down so much, and getting up quickly when he did fall. He even had an assist (if there is such a thing in soccer??) on one of the goals. He was excited about winning and playing well, but I think his favorite part of the game was having an extended audience since Grandma and Tina were both up to watch.

After the game, Sebastian and Isaac 'taught' Grandma how to play PlayStation (aka - they played and told her what they were doing while she watched). Then we went to Red Robin for lunch. Since all the girls were up talking until almost 1:00 last night, everyone was pretty tired afterward. When the kids laid down for nap, so did Grandma. I thought about it, but was afraid I would be groggy the rest of the evening, so I worked on another page for Grandma's book instead.

Tonight we're going to take it easy - get early baths and watch Ice Age the Meltdown. (And I'm looking forward to an early bedtime for myself.) It was a lot of fun having visitors for the evening yesterday and through the afternoon today. I don't always realize how much I miss family until they come to visit and then leave again.

Thursday, September 27, 2007

Why didn't I think of this sooner?

Wow! This afternoon I had an idea that seemed to just fall from the sky, and this evening I ran with it. The toys and books and clothes and such were starting to take over the floors in nearly every room of the house, and I wanted the boys to help me out by cleaning up everything that was theirs (which was quite a bit of it). But, to curb the complaining and grumbling that usually comes with a request for cleaning, I put a spin on it. This is what we did:

We had four things to accomplish this evening. 1 - Clean up. 2 - Baths 3 - Story. 4 - Bedtime. So, I made up a 4-level video game that we were going to play. Each level had different tasks, and if they did them well, and did them quickly, they passed the level.

Well, the first level was clean-up. So I told them that all of the clothes and toys on the floor were hearts and legos that they had to get and put away in the right spots. If they got all the hearts and legos, they won (which Sebastian added his 2 cents and said that if they got it all then they would have a full lego bar. Isaac agreed, and I sorta kinda had an idea of what he meant, so I went along with it. Hey, they were willing to embrace cleaning up, I was willing to let them!) Anyway, while I finished the kitchen, they hurried and cleaned up the living room and their bedroom. I must say that by the time I was ready to give them baths, they had picked up and put away everything except for a book and 2 pair of shoes. They almost got a full lego bar, but since Mommy had to pick up a few of their things, they lost one. Maybe they would get all of their legos on level 2.

Determination set in to get all of their legos, and they were geared up for bath time. For level 2, they had to wash their bodies and their hair, and not spill water out of the tub. And they had to do it all before they ran out of time for the level. You should have heard them reminding and encouraging each other. They even worked together to wash each others' backs so they wouldn't lose legos if Mommy had to wash them any. How cute is that! So, they passed level 2 with flying colors.

Anyway, you get the idea. We had an awesome, rather cooperative, low stress, and quite imagination-filled bedtime routine. The boys were totally captivated by earning their imaginary legos. Isaac even asked if we could clean up the basement tomorrow. My kids requesting a chance to clean?! Why didn't I think of this sooner?

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

It has begun.

This is the general conversation I had with Sebastian the other day...

'Mom, all three Lauren's in my class think I'm cute. That's what they said. That I'm cute. And there's an Ashly and she think's I'm cute too.'

'Oh yeah?'

'Yup. And Lauren C. said I'm her.....what's that word? When you like someone but you don't tell them? what's that called?...... Oh yeah, I'm her crush. That's what she told me. And Abby said she would marry me if we were old enough because I'm smart and cute and funny.'

'I think you're a little young for marriage yet.' Realization sets in at this moment that for the next 16 years of my life (at least), this is what I will deal with. Girlfriends. Boyfriends (on Meagan's part). Phone calls. Drama. It has officially begun.


Here's a layout i did last night. Another page done for Grandma's book. I'm inching my way closer to being done!!! So maybe this Christmas she can get the second half of her album LOL! I really never intended it to take me this long, but it's a pretty big undertaking to scrap a man's entire life. I underestimated the job a little, I guess you could say.


Saturday, September 22, 2007

Beautiful dreamer, beautiful boy

One of the high points of my day was buying some new digital scrapbook stuff to play with. I usually don't buy much stuff unless its SUPER discounted, so it was quite the break from the norm for me. But, I did have a coupon code, and the stuff I bought was all already on sale on top of my coupon, so it still wasn't all that big of a leap. Anyway... I got a bunch of stuff from designers I've never used before, and it's always fun to have a fresh style of fun stuff to play with.

Here's a page I did tonight of Isaac. I love this picture of him that was taken earlier this summer at Meijer Garden. One of my favorite things about him is, and will always be, the way his smile lights up his entire face. Even in black & white, you can see the sparkle in his eyes that comes whenever he smiles. One of the best things in the world is to hear and see him laugh - it's infectious. He definitely lives up to his name (Isaac means to laugh). Another thing I love so much about Isaac is that he is a dreamer. He isn't driven by facts and circumstances. He thrives on imagination, and is fueled by emotion. (Maybe the emotion part is a bit of a challenge at times now, but I know that once he learns how to direct his emotions, this is going to be an amazing quality in him). I wanted to capture that side of him in this layout. He is such a beautiful little boy.


Friday, September 21, 2007

Dear Santa,

I would really like a football helmet for Christmas. A gold one if you have one because Notre Dame is my favorite football players. And I like the Lions, but the Buffalo's are stinky. Love, Isaac

blow-outs and wipe-outs

It all started yesterday when Meagan asked me if we could take a bike ride. Lucas got the bikes down and ready, only to find that I had a flat rear tire. So, not wanting to break my promise to her, I went to Wal-Mart and got a new inner tube. Lucas repaired the bike, and we were good as new.........we thought. We headed off. Thankfully, Lucas had switched Meagan's carrier to his bike so he could take the back wheel off of mine. We got to the end of our road, stopped at the stop sign, and looked for cars. No cars were coming, so we headed out onto the main road. I took about two pedals away from the stop sign when, all at the same time, I (a) heard a loud noise like a car backfiring and (b) felt my rear end drop an inch or so with quite a thud. It took me a second to realize that the two events were related. I looked down, and the tire was completely off the rim, shreds of the new tube were flopping out the sides, and a white cloud of baby powder was just starting to clear...I blew a tire!! It may have taken a minute for me to register what had happened, but Lucas, who was behind me, was laughing hysterically. He said when the thing blew, there was a big puff of powder that burst out everywhere like gun smoke. LOL! So, we busted a U-y (how on earth do you spell that?), and I had to hoof it back to the house. Thankfully we weren't all that far because I don't think I could have carried the back end much further than I did. Really, you don't see that every day!

So, that was yesterday's attempt at family fun. Tonight, we kept it local, and we hung out front-yard style. We had 2-on-2 (with a third floating randomly between teams, and in and out of the game all together) football - of sorts. It started boys against parents. We had hockey nets set up at either end of the front yard as goals. And it was some morphed form of football, which included lots of passing back and forth, running the wrong way, and tackles and blocks that I'm SURE would have drawn penalties had there been ref's around. Man, those boys are scrappy. I wiped out a few times, because they latch on around the knees and hang on until they've twisted and wound in and out of legs and you can do nothing but fall and hope you don't squish them. We had lots of wipe outs, and we all had grass-stained feet, but it was fun. I was the first to bow out of the game. Isaac took me down pretty hard once (I know, go ahead and laugh), and I banged up my hip and leg a bit (the same leg that had taken more than its fair share of helmet blows to the thigh). Ah, well. I was a girl, an only child, and a gymnast - all factors working against me when it comes to growing up playing football and taking beatings. LOL. But, clearly, I've got some practicing to do because I have a few more years of having boys around!

Thursday, September 20, 2007

Got 1 more for ya

I finished one more layout tonight. Lucas was playing on-line, so we recorded Survivor, which pretty much left me with an evening of nothing-much to do. So, other than re-putting the kids to bed a few times (nap time was too long today I think, so no one is sleeping tonight), I just scrapped. (I got more RAM in my computer, so now it's quicker and more fun to scrap with.) Mike took this picture of me at Meagan's birthday party this summer. I don't have many pages with pictures of me, so this seems weird to me.

Journaling: so many elements of this picture capture who i am... casual clothes, sitting outside, camera in-hand, watching the kids play in the yard. i'm not used to seeing pictures of myself, but this time i've been caught.

In my journaling I left out the fact that no matter how happy I am, I typically don't look like it (as you can see in this picture). My neutral face (you know, when I'm not laughing or whatever) is a little grumpy looking - I think because my mouth turns down at the corners, so I always look like I'm scowling. This is at least a 4th generation trait, because my great-grandmother, my grandmother, and my mom all have the same turned down mouth, and we all tend to look ... hmm, how to say it nicely... sometimes maybe a little less-than-happy?? Oh well...just know that I really am happy in this picture. (wink)

Okay, off to start watching Survivor until I fall asleep (which I've been doing rather quickly lately). Have a good night!


Just think...I was a year and a half old when these pictures were taken - December 1979. I struggled with this page some because it's my style of scrapping, but I was afraid it was too busy for Grandma...??? Hopefully she'll like it. If not, I can make her a new layout. These are some great pics - I especially love the one of Grandpa being eaten by the alligator...reminds me of something my father-in-law might do...wonder where he gets it? LOL! The only problem with the pictures is that they aren't very crisp, so I couldn't make them very big on the page because of blurriness. Hopefully they will print large enough for Grandma to be able to see and enjoy.

Day Off

Today is my first day off this week. I have decided to work on Monday's and Wednesday's every week, and then just go in as-needed beyond that. Well, Tuesday I had to go in because we had to take care of some bank paperwork, and yesterday I worked longer than I normally would on Wednesday. Pastor Mark is leaving today for a mission trip to Kenya, and I hung around a little into the afternoon so we could get some last-minute things squared away. All in all, though, the dust starting to settle from the transition, and I think soon I'll be able to really only go in on Monday and Wednesday, and work from home the rest of the time.

So anyway, I had a surprise this morning on my day off - Lucas took the day off too. So we get to hang out today, which we don't often get to do. Unfortunately, somewhere in the midst of hanging out, I need to do laundry and clean the bathrooms and pay bills. But we should still get some time to have fun with the kids and just chill a little.....if he ever gets out of bed LOL!

Oh! While I'm thinking of it, CONGRATULATIONS to Tony and Laura! They had a beautiful baby girl not so very long ago (although I can't tell you exactly when because I'm getting my info from Lucas, who got his from Tony...guys don't really give too much detail *LOL*). Her name is Amelia (like that name, Mom?!) We just wanted you to know we're thinking of you and we love you guys! CONGRATS and send us some pictures when you get a chance!

Saturday, September 15, 2007

3 More Layouts

I got a few more layouts done last night. These all came together pretty quickly, which doesn't happen often for me. It usually takes me a couple hours on each layout, but I did all three of these in about 2 1/2 hours total.

These two are not meant to be a 2-page layout, but they are meant to sort of coordinate, since they'll be side-by-side in the album. These are pictures from our trip to the butterfly exhibit at Meijer Garden this past spring. One of these butterflies was actually in a little room because it had just hatched from its cacoon and wasn't strong enough to fly yet. But the little room made for an ugly picture, so I put him on a leaf instead...can you find the butterfly that was photoshoped into the picture? (I'll give you a's the green one LOL)

Wasn't Isaac a cute baby! I love the expressions on their faces in these pictures. My journaling says, 'One wants to be like his daddy...the other, to be a man worthy of such an aspiration.'

All three of these layouts were made using Sweet Genevieve products, as well as Paint the Moon designs. Click here for credits.

1st Soccer Game

This morning was Sebastian's first soccer game - SO CUTE! It was freezing, but the sun was out at least. We went armed with blankets and hooded sweatshirts (Sebastian wore a winter hat and a long sleeved t-shirt under his jersey).

It was maybe the cutest thing I've seen in a while. Mass running and kicking and legs flying. Sebastian was his scrappy self and did a good job getting through people and right into the middle of the action. If they would have been calling for holding, I'm pretty sure he would have been called for it. A few times I saw him grab a guy by the shoulder and pull him backwards to give himself the advantage (wrong sport, kid).

He did a good job breaking up a few plays by getting into the middle of everything, although I'm not so sure he actually knew that's what he had done. LOL. But because he was in the middle of flying legs all the time, he was constantly falling down. Once, while he was down he got kicked in the thigh, and was taken out of the game for a few minutes to recover. The coach gave him a choice to sit out and take it easy or go back in. He chose to go back in - I was proud of him for that. So every time he fell, we (myself on one side of the field, the coaches on the other) all started yelling 'Get up Sebastian!' I think toward the end of the game he was getting a little tired of picking himself up off the ground because he got slower and slower to get up with each fall.

He scored one goal, but it didn't count because he kicked it a second or two after they blew the whistle. Oh well...he still did good. He might be the tiniest guy on his team, but he held his own.

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Can you do that?!

Today was a bit of a hectic day at work - not bad, just crazy. I'm still getting adjusted to where things are and how things have been done in the past, etc. So I'm working a little slower than I would hope. It doesn't speed things up any when you lock yourself out of your office LOL!! We have the kind of doors that stay locked and you just open them with a key. Well, I had my door propped open all day, so had completely forgotten about it being a 'locked' door. Well, I got a phone call and pushed the door shut for some privacy....still not a big deal because I was IN the office on the phone. After I hung up though, I decided to take a potty break. I opened the door, walked out and left the door (I thought) standing about half-way open. Well, apparently they not only are the kind of doors that stay locked, but they are also the kind that shut behind you if they're not propped open. So when I got back from the bathroom, I was locked out. My keys (and every spare key to the door, I might add) were in the locked office where they were of absolutely no use to me. Luckily, another of the ladies whose office is off of mine was only out to lunch and had plans to return to the office. So, I waited for her to get back, and she let me in, and all was well again... I only lost about an hour and fifteen minutes of my day doing absolutely NOTHING!!! LOL! I got a good laugh at myself - lesson learned...let's see if I can NOT do that again!

Since I was running behind after my lock-out, I asked Lucas if he could get home in time to get Sebastian off of the bus - about 4:45. Well, at about 4:35 my office phone rings. It's Lucas. "Hey, there's a message from the school saying that Sebastian never got on the bus today and is waiting here for someone to pick him up." So, he gets back in the truck, heads to the school and gets our goofy kid. When he asked Sebastian why he didn't ride the bus, his response was, "Well, I've never been picked up from school before, and I thought today would be a good day for it." CAN YOU DO THAT? Can you just decide that without sharing the information with anyone else? Apparently you can. Because he did. What a goofball. Really, though, I think I'm going to have to call the school and talk with them. They have three contact numbers for me, and three for Lucas, yet they only called one number and left a message. And why, when you have no indication in writing or otherwise, from an adult saying that Sebastian would be picked up would you NOT make him get on the bus. Why do you just take the word of a 6-year-old when it comes to matters of finding a way for him to get home? That's what I would like to know. Seems the situation could have been handled a little better, so he would have only been waiting about 10 minutes for me to leave work and get to school, which is a lot better than an hour. Anyway....

Well, now that my crazy day has ended, my kids are in bed, and I'm on strike for the rest of the night, I'm gonna go veg in front of the TV until its time to crash. Later.

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

3 More Layouts

Here are 3 more layouts I did this week (or last, I can't remember LOL). These pictures were all taken at Mom & Mike's house when we were down at the end of August for a visit. This was the night that all of the kids went into the pond fully-dressed (as did Grandma once to rescue Meagan).

The first one is not my usual style - I'm not usually a graphic layout kinda girl. But there were SOOOO many good pictures of Meagan that I wanted to use, and I thought this simple, graphic layout would be the cleanest and easiest way to display them all. I don't think the quote is from anyone - I just sort of made it up, although I'm sure I'm not the first person to ever think/write/say it, so I can't really take the credit. Anyway, it says, "The fullness of life is lived moment by moment."

Second pond picture layout....

I love this picture of Sebastian and Meagan. When I sat down to scrap it, a conversation came to mind that I had just recently had with Sebastian. So, I used that conversation for my journaling.


This layout may look familiar to some of you, since I posted on my other blog the other day. But I thought I'd share it here too. The journaling is a verse from the Bible - Jeremiah 17:6-7 - 'Blessed is the man who trusts in the Lord, whose confidence is in Him. He shall be like a tree planted by the water that sends out its roots by the stream. It does not fear when heat comes; its leaves are always green; it has no worries in a year of drought and never fails to bear fruit.

Monday, September 10, 2007

Last day of K

No journaling - just a picture of Sebastian and me on his last day of kindergarten. I wanted to scrap it because there aren't a lot of pictures that include me, and I don't want my kids to some day wonder why I'm not in any of their pictures. LOL!

Rewriting the Food Pyramid

Isaac has said a few funny things in the past few days that make me think he's got plans to rewrite the food pyramid to better suit his tastes. Yesterday, out of the blue, he said, "Mom, jelly beans are my favorite kind of beans. I think they're a vegetable." Then today at lunch he told me that goldfish (you know - the little fish-shaped crackers) are his favorite kind of fish. Nice. I got a chuckle out of it, so I thought I'd share.

Sunday, September 9, 2007

FINALLY I can post some layouts!

I've done a few layouts over the course of the past two-ish weeks, but I haven't been able to post any of them because of the release dates of some of the products. Well, the products release next Sunday, but we have permission to start posting on message boards tomorrow. So I'm gonna go ahead and post a few here tonight. I'll post the rest of them over the course of the next few days.

Here's the first one - 'I TRIED.' I used stuff from Sweet Genevieve's new kit - Be Dreamy. These pictures are from my attempt at getting Meagan's 2-year pictures.

Journaling: I tried to get one good picture of you that would capture 'you' at 2. One worthy of framing and giving to grandparents. Instead, I got this. A series of pictures of you looking away, making faces, or running off. Well, I didn't succeed in getting that one good picture, but I surely captured the real you.

This one was inspired by an I SPY page that I am all-too-familiar with, since the boys and I have done this page about 200 times at bed time (or whenever the mood for I SPY should strike). It's in the School Days I SPY book, and it's a big explosion of art supplies, paper projects, and just a plain mess. So, I figured since I had pictures from a paint project that made quite the mess, it was only fitting.

Journaling: I spy a grandma, three eager kids, a round tablecloth and open paint lids; a paint smock, a paint brush, a project that's neat; petals of hands and leaves made of feet.

What are little sisters for?

If I could go back in time about 4 hours, I would queue up the camcorder and have it on-hand for the night's upcoming dinner conversation. Meagan had us laughing so hard we were nearly in tears tonight. Here's the whole story...

Tonight for dinner we had chicken fingers, peas, and macaroni. A pretty kid-friendly meal, by most kid standards... but not Isaac's. About a month ago he declared an absolute, uncompromising hatred for macaroni and cheese (he's not my kid!). So when macaroni comes up as one of the elements of a meal, we have issues with Isaac. Tonight we heard, my tummy hurts, I'm full, and I just want to eat the BBQ sauce. Finally, he simply resorted to the stall tactic of pretending to forget that the food was there and simply not taking any more bites of anything. Well, Sebastian and Meagan had finished their meals, and had waited long enough. So I went ahead and gave them their desert - cupcakes with chocolate icing (left over from the first day of school).

Before I go any further, note that Isaac and Meagan were sitting by each other at dinner, so Meagan had direct access to her bother.

Isaac was still sitting and staring at the four or five macaroni noodles I had put on his plate that he still had not touched, along with 2 of the 3 little tiny chunks of chicken (so basically all he had eaten up to this point were his peas and BBQ sauce). Meanwhile Meagan was thoroughly enjoying her chocolate icing. Not 30 seconds prior, she heard me prompt Isaac to take a bite of his chicken or macaroni. Apparently she was displeased with his lack of action, so she leans over to him, cupcake in hand.

Meagan (in the sweetest, most sincere, soft little voice imaginable): 'Eat your chicken Isaac.'
Isaac (in a voice a little 'less' sweet): 'Don't tell me what I have to eat.'
Meagan: Okay, sorry Isaac.......Meagan is eating. See it? I'm eating cupcake. See my cupcake Isaac?'
(Isaac gives her a 'look')

A few moments pass...

Meagan: 'Are you finished? Are you having desert?'
Isaac: 'No, I'm not finished yet.'
Meagan: 'Okay..... Meagan is eating a cupcake. See it? It's a good cupcake. Do you want to eat a cupcake Isaac? Meagan is eating a cupcake. It's yummy.'

We tried. We tried to conceal our laughter. We tried not to laugh out loud, or let them see us smiling behind our hands. We tried looking away, covering our faces, biting our cheeks...but nothing could stop it. We couldn't help but laugh at her seemingly innocent, yet knowingly antagonistic banter with her big brother. But the cutest thing was that when he had finally eaten his required amounts for dinner, and he finally got his cupcake, she congratulated him. 'Are you eating a cupcake now Isaac? Good job.' Those two may go at each other, but they are 2 peas in a pod. And they're good for some comic relief at dinner from time to time.

Saturday, September 8, 2007

REWIND - Soccer Practice

Well, this past Thursday was Sebastian's first soccer practice. Not surprisingly, he was the smallest little guy on his team - also the youngest...I think all the other boys are 7 or 8. He seemed to have a really good time. He even actually looked like he kinda knew what he was doing. I think soccer seems to be holding his attention a little more than t-ball did - not so much standing around and waiting, I think.

They had a team meeting with all the kids and coaches to pick out their team name. They are the 'Stingers.' Fittingly, while they were having this team meeting, Lucas was on the playground with Isaac and Meagan, where he was being stung by bees that had made their home in some of the playground equipment. LOL!

No real incidents during practice. Only once, one little boy who is more than a head taller than Sebastian tried to cut in front of him for a turn to do the drill they were doing. First, Sebastian just kinda stepped back around in front of him. When the kid tried again to get in front of him, Sebastian turned to face the kid and squared off against him. Again, the kid tried to get around him to cut...that was it. Sebastian, stepped back in front of him to block him, and pushed him back into his place. So I'd say even though he's the youngest and the smallest on his team, he has every intention of standing up for himself...makes his daddy proud! One of the other dad's saw all of this happen, and said, 'Ooo, he looks like he's a scrappy little guy, huh?' SCRAPPY. What a perfect way to describe him. I couldn't help of thinking of some of the stories my dad has told me about his childhood days having to stand up for himself...Sebastian definitely has a little of his grandpa in him.

REWIND - 1st day of school pics

What kind of mother am I if I don't post pictures from the first day of school? Plus, I thought I'd give you all an update. As of yesterday, Friday of his first week of school, he has decided that he likes first grade. The only bad thing, he says, is that they don't give them snack anymore...he said first-graders don't get snack. So he'll have to adjust to that, which may take a bit. Other than that, he has requested that I pick him up from school whenever I can because the bus ride home takes too long (an hour and 15 minutes...I agree). But, all in all, he is liking school now. Cool.

So here are the pictures from his first day of school:

Rewind - Meijer Garden

Admittedly, I am WAY behind on posting - especially when it comes to pictures. I've been taking the pictures, but have had no free time to do much with them. So, I have decided to put my every-expanding pile of laundry on hold and post pictures for all of you (and for me too, really...I love looking at the pics when I look back at old blog posts).

So, I'm going all the way back to the end of August. I don't think I even blogged about this, so better late than never, I guess! Friday the 31st, I took the kids up to Meijer Garden. We stopped by and picked up Kelli and her 2 boys and all went together...5 kids ranging from 1 to 6...but it actually went pretty well. They all had tons of fun - especially in the water and the sand! And it was so nice to get to talk to Kelli face-to-face. She and I used to know everything about each other. We did everything together that we could get away with, finished each other's sentences, (made up goofy contracts!), and were basically inseparable. Many of my favorite childhood memories include her - gymnastics, forever watching Grease in her living room, playing in the 'fort' under her basement stairs LOL. But, like with many childhood friends, we slowly started growing apart as we got older, and now we keep in touch through email and blog posts. So it was WONDERFUL to get to have a real conversation with her again, just to get caught up. Not surprisingly, it was just as easy as ever to fall into comfortable conversation, and I think we stayed longer than we may have planned at the sand pit just because we were talking (plus, we had found a bit of shade to hide in and were in no hurry to leave it). Anyway, it was a great day all around, and a great way to end our summer break.

Anyway, here are a few pictures from our day there.

Tuesday, September 4, 2007

My defender!

You may have heard me mention a time or two Lucas's after-dinner-madness that usually ends up in a family-wide wrestling/brawl of some sort. Well, tonight, I was the victim. It was one of our more memorable wrestling bouts...

At dinner I made the mistake of sitting by my dear darling husband. At some point near the end of our meal, he leaned over and did some something-or-other to my shoulder, which left a mark (it didn't hurt, just left a mark). So while Iwas clearing dishes, he started teasing me that I had a hickey on my shoulder, so I (silly me, what was I thinking) starting swinging my dish towel at him. Apparently, this was cause for retaliation, because he soon bear-hugged me at the knees and picked me up over his shoulders (or at least that's what he meant to do)...but somewhere in the process of all of this, he lost his balance and started falling back and to the side, which made my left foot slide up under his knee (as it was hitting the ground). My toenail on my big toe bent right in half - didn't rip all the way off, just bent and bled. And if that wasn't enough, we both went crashing into the cabinets. You know those 'fake drawer' faces on cabinets - the ones that aren't supposed to move? Well, I somehow managed to dislodge one of those on my way crashing to the ground. Smooth, huh? It was actually fixable, but it made a loud noise. Well, I think between the loud noise and my howling about my toe, Isaac decided that I needed he hopped up from the table and ran over and cracked Lucas right in the eye. LOL! I have a defender!! It's nice to know I don't have to face the crazy man alone! Still some days I marvel at the fact that I married him on purpose!

1st day of 1st grade (minus the pictures...sorry)

I know the grandma's were waiting for calls from Sebastian to hear about his first day of school...
But the poor kid is crashed. The whole 'full-day-of-school' thing must have taken it out of him.

His bus was supposed to get here at 8:05 this morning, and they say to be ready 10 minutes early. So, at 10 'til, we went out and took a few pictures (which I'm too tired to post tonight...maybe tomorrow). At about 8:00, he started watching for his bus. At 8:25, we were beginning to wonder a little. At 8:30 we were beginning to wonder a lot. Then finally, at 8:45, the bus came rollin' down the street. Thing #1 that didn't go quite right.

Well, fast forward to school (which I'm POSITIVE they were late for)... His school combines 1st and 2nd graders in the same classroom - they have 2 teachers that share teaching duties, and he will have the same teachers for 1st and 2nd grade. I'm not sure why they do it this way, they just do. So Sebastian, who doesn't do exceptionally well in large groups of unfamiliar people, was in a classroom full of way more kids than he's used to - most of them whom he does not know. Thing #2 that was a little tough.

Now, here's where my 'oops' comes in. Last year on the first day the school provided the snack. I thought (based on what I can no longer remember, but I swear I thought I got a note about it or something...anyway I was wrong so it doesn't really matter) that they were providing snack for them today, so I didn't pack one. Well, they didn't, so the poor kid had to go without afternoon snack while the rest of his class ate. That's a tough one! Thing #3 that didn't go as planned.

Now, fast forward to the part where he comes home after a long and tiring day. His bus was scheduled to drop off at 4:45, which is late enough as is. He didn't get home until 5:40...almost an hour late! He said the bus driver didn't know where he was going and got lost and had to turn around on some weird road (which I'm a little confused about since the same guy drove the SAME route this morning...oh well). At least he got home safely, even if he did have a rough start to first grade. Luckily, I was able to slightly redeem myself by having cupcakes with chocolate icing waiting for him for an after-school (or almost bedtime, since they got home so late) snack.

Bedtime tonight was ROUGH. He was overly tired, and feeling frustrated, and still having trouble settling down. Every time Isaac moved or made a noise Sebastian got more and more worked up, until it finally turned into a trip to the basement to tell me (through tears and sobs) that Isaac was the one who ruined his whole day because he just can't sleep very well when Isaac is noisy. That was followed a few minutes later by a trip to the basement by Isaac, who was crying and sobbing saying, "I'm sorry Mommy that I ruined Sebastian's day. I didn't mean to." Sheesh - so I can only imagine that somewhere in between Sebastian's trip to the basement and Isaac's trip to the basement, some accusations and nasties were passed between the two boys. I was just praying that Sebastian would hurry up and fall asleep so it would end, at least for the night. I haven't heard anything for at least 45 minutes, so I think they must finally be asleep.

On the bright side, at dinner, Sebastian determined that he thinks tomorrow is going to be a better day. I hope he's right, or at this rate, it's going to be a long school year.

Monday, September 3, 2007

Last Day of Summer Vacation!

Well, we've officially come to the close of the last day of summer vacation. Tomorrow, Sebastian starts 1st grade. He's so excited, he can hardly lay still. He has already come out of his room once to make sure I will wake him up in the morning, and once to tell me he 'can't really sleep very well.' How cute is that? I can remember being so super excited and nervous the night before the first day of school. I guess these are things we sort of forget about once we're all grown up. That's the best part of having kids - they remind me what it was like to be young.

So how did we spend our last day of no school? With a little bit of not very much. We played I SPY, the boys played play station for a while (Oh yea, over the weekend, they worked together to clean up the basement and their room, and Lucas took them to get a new PlayStation. It was like Christmas morning...they were so giddy!), I paid bills, and Lucas mowed after work. But we did go out to eat at Logan's for dinner, which is always a bonus.

Tomorrow I have my first real day of work. While I was on vacation with the kids our Pastor called and asked if I would be willing to do the bookwork for the church. About 15 hours a week, and once I figure out the details, I should be able to do at least half of that from home. Sweet set up, and I couldn't ask to work with better people. I'm super excited about it, actually, even though I wasn't looking for work when it came up. I went in last week one day to get familiar with the office and such, and one day to do a little bit of stuff with the man who is training me. This week, we're hoping to get in the rest of my training (or at least the bulk of it). Should be an interesting week...wish me luck!