Wednesday, August 29, 2012


Sebastian was invited to a birthday party this evening from 6:00 - 8:00 at an indoor trampoline park. Right after a 2-hour gymnastics practice. Can you pretty much guess how that birthday party went for him? He LOOOOVVVED it! His brain never turned off the gymnastics mode, so he went straight from the gym to a giant trampoline park... this is like heaven on earth for my child.

When he got home, I asked him if he had a good time (duh). He said, "Oh yea!! I worked on my front pike kick out full. I would have done double fronts into the pit, but the place has a No Double Flips Rule" (said in his best 'that's really dumb' voice). Um, okay. Good job on the pike blah blah blah. And I'm thinking there might be a decent reason that the trampoline place full of children has a no double flips rule. Maybe?  But I'm glad it was fun all the same. No go get a shower and do your homework!!  ;)


Just Like Jack

Last night I had one of those tough parenting moments. I was talking to Sebastian about some praise for him that his teachers had shared with me, but quickly the conversation took a turn from positive to not-so-upbeat. He started telling me about being in class, and how not many kids in his class are willing to work in partner groups with him. He didn't seem to indicate that the kids were mean about it, but simply that they preferred to partner with other people instead. In essence, he feels like an outsider.

He said, "The other boys all know each other from football and baseball and basketball and stuff. I just don't fit in with them." His eyes welled up with tears, and try as he might to hold them at bay, a tear or two slipped out to betray just how much this hurts him.

As you can imagine, as a mother, I want to be able to FIX this for him. But I can't. I can't say anything that will make these boys see him differently. I can't do anything that will immediately change his circumstances. BUT. That doesn't make me powerless. I can listen. I can support him. I can offer words of wisdom about life and friendships. And I can offer up examples of others who have been through this too, so he knows he's not alone in this struggle.

Well, this morning, that's just what I did. Of course last night I listened and hugged him and gave him encouragement. But this morning, I was able to give him a real-life example of someone Sebastian admires who admittedly has gone through these same struggles.

In the past few months, we've watched the documentary It Might Get Loud more than once, and Sebastian has watched it every chance he's had. He's taken a liking to White Stripes music, particularly Seven Nation Army, and has tried to teach himself to play it on his cello. This documentary has been a source of inspiration to him to explore musical and artistic avenues which he seems to enjoy so very much. All great stuff, although none of it is main-stream-America football and baseball. In the documentary, Jack White spends a few minutes talking about his childhood. He tells about growing up in Detroit, and how he struggled at times because playing an instrument was about as uncool as you could possibly get in that area. He was just not on the same path as everyone else. He was different. He was 'uncool'. And now he's an amazingly talented and successful musician. When I pointed out to Sebastian this similarity between himself and Jack White, he smiled. He seemed pleased. I like that.

So thanks Jack White for being different, and for taking the time to say so. Thanks for following your own path instead of the path everyone else was beating down. While you may seem like an unlikely 'roll model' for a 6th grader, you have provided a very real example of someone willing to stand out in a world full of chameleons.

I think in raising our children, one of the things I have said and will continue to say repeatedly is this: "You can't get to your own destination if you're trying to follow someone else's path." I hope and pray that someday he grasps this and truly embraces the awesome that he is.

Monday, August 20, 2012


Among some of the other things that took place this weekend, Sebastian had a state clinic for gymnastics on Saturday. Four hours of gymnastics, a collaboration of coaches from around the state, and even Justin Spring (2008 Olympian) as a guest coach. Pretty sweet.

The highlights of his day were (1) getting Justin's autograph and getting to talk to him about the Olympics, and (2) doing giants for the first time. He was super pumped that he did something new for the first time!! And even though I took very few photos or video, I did happen to get this on video.

So there you go. A major milestone in my kid's gymnastics life, caught on film.


Friday, August 17, 2012

Friday Updates

So far so great with the school year!!  The kids have all had a fantastic first 'week' and are excited about the year! Meagan has a few good friends in her class. And she has been invited to participate in accelerated math this year. She's pumped about that!

Isaac really likes his teacher, and has more than a few familiar faces in his class as well. Plus, he has a class pet - a big fat guinea pig named Daisy. So he's happy!

Sebastian has two teachers this year instead of one... so he will be switching classes... not counting his special classes like strings and computer lab. Plus, he has already taken the cello to school and has strings every day. He has a place to keep it at school during the week, and will bring it home to practice on the weekends (which means it looks like I will be picking him up on Friday's).

Last night Meagan lost her 2nd tooth ever. I've told you before, we don't really do the tooth fairy around here. For the past few years, whenever the boys have lost a tooth, I pay them a dollar to go throw it in the trash. Yep, I'm that kind of mom. So, we did the tooth fairy for Meagan's first tooth, but I told her from now on, she will just throw it away like the boys do. Well, last night she worked and worked and worked (and cried a lot in between all that working) to get her tooth out. When it finally came out, she asked me if she could put it under the pillow... I told her no, just to throw it away. I also told her I would have to go to the bank in the morning to get money because I didn't actually have a dollar to give her last night.  Not happy with the answer, she went to find her daddy, and apparently busted out the Puss in Boots eyes on him. So he told her to put it under her pillow. You can just imagine, she was pretty excited!! She wrapped it up in a tissue and carefully laid it under the pillow. She even wrote a little note and drew a picture for the tooth fairy, who, by the way, she has named Tina.  The problem is, now I HAVE to scrounge up a dollar somewhere because her dad can't resist the Puss Eyes. *eye roll*  So yes, I won Mother of the Year accolades by taking a dollar out of the kids GIVING jars (yep, stealing out of the giving money... there's gotta be a whole lot not right about that) to stick under her pillow!

And tonight was Meagan's first ever 4-hour practice. I wasn't sure what to expect... after a full day of school, practice from 4:00 to 8:00 with no dinner could prove to be her undoing. Surprisingly, when 8:00 rolled around, she was in a great mood! Cheerful and happy and chatty, not at all what I was expecting. She was even excited that she had gotten two new skills at practice tonight that she had not previously done on her own (a back walkover and a shoot-through on bars).

And then.

The drama busted out of its cage some time around 9:15. She TRIED to show her dad her back walkover, but was too tired, and plopped down on her noggin. Not good. I'm sure it hurt, but I don't think that was her biggest trigger as much as embarrassment and frustration. Oh. My. Word. Did the drama ever start flying! She cried. I told her she could just show him tomorrow when she wasn't so tired. She then began rambling off this whole string of irrational thoughts full of extremes and absolutes like you would not believe!! "I'll NEVER have a time that I can show him! He'll NEVER see me do a good back walkover because I don't do them in meets! I ALWAYS lose my concentration and mess up!" And on. And on. And on. Seriously.

I gave her an ice pack for her head. Then put her in bed. That was one tired seven year old. So maybe the 4-hour practice schedule is going to take some getting used to.

And that's it for my random bits of info and updates. Tomorrow is another sport-filled day of dance, a football game, and state gymnastics clinics for Bas, so I'm off to lay down and read until I fall asleep.

Before I share my layouts for today, I thought I'd pass along some fun stuff... The Lilypad is having a store-wide sale this weekend... 30% off of everything thru the 20th!  Click the image to check out the shop...

I have 2 layouts to share with you this week...

The first one is a memory from our camping trip this summer... I didn't have any pictures of our night by the campfire making s'mores, but I still wanted to document it. I used a fantastic new camping kit by Karah Fredricks & Gina Miller...

(Click here to view full credits)
Journaling: "Yes we did make s'mores, but it was too dark out for pictures. Saturday night, just before we got cleaned up for bed, we roasted marshmallows and made s'mores over the campfire. It's a good thing too, because we only ended up staying one night."

For layout #2, Krista Sahlin of Sahlin Studio asked the members of her creative team to pick their favorite Sahlin Studio kit or product and make a layout with it. I thought it would be fun, but I didn't expect it to be so hard! She has a LOT of great stuff, and picking a true favorite is virtually impossible. I do have a handful of kits, though, that I am more drawn to, for the colors or element style or whatever. I chose to use Field Trip and a few other mix-and-match items to go with it...

Meagan's lunch she made for herself the night before her first day of 2nd grade...
(Click here to view full credits)
Journaling: "I packed my own lunch for the 1st day of school. Apples and kiwi, cheese, peanut butter and jelly, cherry tomatoes from our garden, mini cinnamon graham crackers, and mommy threw in a mini york peppermint patty."


Wednesday, August 15, 2012

For the first time ever

For the first time ever, I made it through the first day of school without even a hint of getting choked up. No tears. No sentimentality. No difficulty swallowing. No sniffling. None of that. Does that make me a bad mom?

I don't think it does. I think it makes me a mom who has been doing this for 7 years and who has had a house full of kids all summer who were ready to get back to routine and normalcy. Yep. It was definitely just time for them to get back to their own lives and friends and learning and schedules. All good stuff after two months of lazing around.

So, just like last year, Sebastian's bus came early, and he was the first one to get off to school. He picked out his shirt to wear today... it says I am who I am... Your approval is not needed. That about sums him up. So I guess he just wanted to make his point on the first day. *lol*

Again, I kept pictures of him to a minimum, so as not to completely and utterly embarrass him. That has to make up a bit for the fact that I didn't get choked up, right? Yep, I say it does.

So, the other two... Isaac wore his new shark shirt, and Meagan, well, she went all fashionista. *rolls eyes* We are in so much trouble when her teen years roll around.

(By the way, she told me if I want, I can borrow her bracelet sometime... I just have to ask first to make sure it's okay. Sweet.)

And they're off. And I get a few quiet hours in the day. And I like it.


Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Last Day of Summer

I'll be honest. For the last few days, I've been longing for this moment. The moment when I officially tuck my kids into bed for the last time on Summer Break. Tomorrow is the triumphant return to school (followed by a quiet mommy moment of basking in the silence... no, seriously).  Sebastian's bus will be here around 7:10. Early. Then the other 2 will roll out around 8:10. Good stuff.

This morning I had a work meeting, so my new but amazingly dear friend Jessica brought her 3 boys over to our house and stayed with our kiddos while I went to work. Yes, the first day of school also marks the return to being responsible for 200 kids at a time on the playground. Good stuff. I'm ready for it!

After friends disbursed, we headed to Payless for gym shoes, which had totally fallen off the radar until today. Just never really even crossed my mind until I read through a little welcome note that we had gotten from one of the kids' teachers. Yep, I guess they DO need shoes for gym class. Right. So we went and go some.

Then Lucas decided we should let the kids choose a place to go out to eat for their last Summer dinner. It took them quite a while to come to a consensus, but they managed. And what did they decide on?  Wait for it...... Applebee's. Yep. Of all the possibilities, they went with Applebee's. This is what happens when you let the kids choose. Ha!

After dinner, Lucas buzzed the boys' heads so they didn't go to school with shaggy heads. We got all the school supplies sorted and stuffed into the appropriate book bags. Got the first-day clothes picked out. Everything ready to go.

Now here's the problem...
THIS is bedtime. It's glowing in her room it's still so bright outside.
Yep, this is what 8:30 looks like right now. So, the only real solution is to let them lay in bed and read until darkness falls. She did eventually get up and wander downstairs, so I let her help me pack her lunch for tomorrow. That seemed to make her beyond happy, and she went back to bed feeling rather satisfied.  Here's what's on the menu for Meagan tomorrow:

PBJ, kiwi, apples, cheese, cherry tomatoes from our garden, mini grahams, and a mini york peppermint patty. We only had 3 tomatoes left. They look a little lonely in there, don't they?

So I'm off to finish up the last load of laundry for the night, and make sure everyone's things are in place, and set my alarm... and my back up alarm... and maybe one more for good measure... because I'm not so good at mornings... at all. 


Monday, August 13, 2012


Well, I'd say the cat is gone for good. Last Saturday (over a week ago), when we were loading up the truck to head to Ohio, I guess she slipped out the door without our knowledge. Lucas and I came home Sunday (the kids stayed with Grandma & Grandpa for a few extra days), and she was gone gone gone. I did what I could - checked the humane society, filled out a missing cat form, and made sure her microchip contact information was up to date. I even posted on an area facebook page and craig's list for missing animals. No luck. So, I suppose we are catless. The kids took it well, but I think it's because I was able to tell them she decided to go out on an adventure... she may come back, but she may not, but SHE chose to go out and wander off. So yeah, they handled it really well. Every now and then, they'll comment about missing her, but I really couldn't have hoped for a better response.


So, I mentioned that we went to Ohio for a quick trip. We went Saturday after gymnastics practice. Went to Red Lobster for dinner when we got there. Then Lucas and I went to see the last Batman movie while the kids went home with my parents to play.

Then on Sunday we had a cookout, and got to see aunts and cousins that we don't get to see nearly enough. And of course, the kids got in the pond! These two sat on the edge of the dock 'fishing' while they waited to be able to get in. Love the imagination!

And here are the cousins (minus Joey and Cole, as neither of them was getting in the water):
Not a great photo because I did a photography no-no and had them facing into the sun. Oops. But, it's still fun to see them all together!


Okay, so I got my hair cut. And colored. It's been a LONG time since I've taken the time for color. And it's been a long time since my hair has been this short. What do you think? I don't feel like myself in it yet, but I think I'll get used to it.

Meagan got her hair cut too.  She was super worried that the hair lady would cut all her hair off! In reality, she had 3 inches trimmed off the edges, and Meagan was thrilled! It's been YEARS since I've had a set hair person, but I think I've finally found someone I'll go back to.


Isaac had his first football game already. This Saturday at 10:00 his team, 'Penn State' (no comments, please) played 'Ohio State' (their league uses college team names for the 3rd and 4th grade teams), and won 14-0.  He was thrilled!! The opening play, his team received the kick off, and Isaac blocked - aka wiped out - 3 guys at once and made a huge hole for his teammate to run. They scored on the kick off!!  What a way to start off their football season! Good stuff!

Besides football, we also had dance and gymnastics practices on Saturday. And Sunday was DeVeau's 30-year anniversary, so we went to the big bash to celebrate! And somewhere in there, we also managed to pick out and purchase the tile for the kitchen. It was a busy weekend! With our lives, though, I would expect nothing less.


Wednesday, August 8, 2012

I thought I'd share what I have for Meagan's meet schedule for this competition season. I have weekends and locations, not specific days or times yet. That info is usually given out at 1-2 weeks before the meet.  
I also put a static page at the top of my blog (see the link up there under my header??) that shows her meet schedule. I'll update it as I find out more specific details. I still don't have Sebastian's yet, but I'll pass it along when I do.  

Also, I have Isaac's football game schedule. There's a page up there for that as well. So here they are... 

Meagan's meets: 
  • November 10-11  Noblesville, IN
  • November 17-18  Madison, IN
  • January 11-13  *Circle of Stars*  Indianapolis, IN
  • January 26-27  Indianapolis, IN
  • February 9-10  Greenwood, IN
  • February 23-24  Ft. Wayne, IN
  • March 9-10  *State Meet (if she qualifies)* Kokomo, IN
Isaac's football games: 
  • August 11,  10:00 am
  • August 18, 10:00 am
  • September 8, 9:00 am
  • September 15, 9:00 am
  • September 22, 10:00 am
  • September 29, 10:00 am
  • October 6, TBD

Thursday, August 2, 2012

Set Up Camp

Okay, here goes a plug for one of my favorite designers and digi friends... Krista Sahlin of Sahlin Studio. Every month Krista features one of her kits. At the end of the month she gives away a $10 gift certificate to her shop to one lucky winner who scraps with the feature kit.  This month's kit is Summer Camp, which for me is PERFECT timing to scrap our camping pictures from early July. You can check out the details of her August feature and contest on her blog.

Check out this kit... it's gorgeous!! And you can snag it now for $5.59!! (Image linked)

Here's my new layout I did with this kit... scrapped about setting up camp (obviously...*HA*)
(Click here to view full credits)

And here's an older layout I did with this kit. These photos are from our trip to visit Grandma & Grandpa W. last summer.
(Click here to view full credits)

So there you go... it's an awesome kit! There are other related products like word art and recreational icons that are just as awesome! Take advantage of the sale price, and take a shot at winning the $10!!