Thursday, September 30, 2010

The End of the Season

One last summer meal at the pool ....

we eat some pretty funky combinations when we're there.....
fruit with potato chips, fruit loops with cheese, pbj with pizza,
milk chased with a soda 
the only criteria to make it on the pool lunch menu

is whether it will be eaten or not.


Why is John smiling?

probably for the same reason Emily looks like this.....

She's probably giving him an ear full for something he just did to agitate her.
I am guessing she is suggesting he go jump in the deep end with a bowling ball for a life preserver!!

This guy on the other hand doesn't put much effort into agitating his female counterpart.

and she reciprocates by being a great playmate for Grant.

They have had a great summer at the pool. 

They've both got a great start on being capable swimmers.
The warm weather has made it a joy to get in with them and work with them.  Have I mentioned I hate cold water??

Plus they've had hours of fun playing in the baby pool. 

 Grace graduates out of the baby pool next year and will be too old to be in there at all.  I am guessing that will be the end of Grant's interest in the baby pool too.

So time marches on and kids grow up..... 

 Sometimes watching an era come to an end is bittersweet....

like knowing I've probably spent my last day parked on the edge of the baby pool comparing kid stories with other mothers.

yet I am so grateful to watch all four kids grow up into mature individuals who don't need their mom quite so much anymore

Just as I have mixed emotions when I see summer changing to fall

I must admit there are a few mixed emotions watching these guys change too.

I see that season of intense need by my kids coming to an end sooner than I want....
but then again.....

after ten continuous years of pulling guard duty on the edge of a baby pool

a pool lounge chair and a good book look pretty promising somewhere in my future. (smile)

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

How late is too late??

Some things get done EARLY around here.....

like Grace learning to play the piano.

She's motoring her way right through the first book and still loving it.

Most days she'll still go downstairs to practice three or four times.

I know she's doing this early because she has seen the example of her older sibs, but who can argue with getting a head start!

Some things don't get done quite so early or even on time it Grace having friends from school over to play.

When John and Emily were in preschool, I knew all the kids in the class and knew most of the parents too.  We had multiple play dates with their classmates that year.

Fast forward six years and two more kids to juggle and when Grace's preschool graduation rolled around the only two kids other than Grace that I knew in her class were the same two I knew in August when she started preschool. 

Don't even test me on parents either...I would completely fail there.

All that to say, it took me until August THIS YEAR before I ever arranged a time for her to play with anyone from LAST YEAR'S preschool class. 

We had this little girl come over to play a couple weeks before school started up again....knowing things would be busy once the new school year started.

You know what I learned when this little girl's mom came to pick her up?  She lives in our subdivision.  We could realistically walk to her house.  That didn't make me feel any better as a mom.

Pictures of Grace cooking........just for fun.  I saw them on my camera tonight.  I will say all of my kids have learned early how to function in the kitchen.....just don't ask Emily to peel a banana for you (inside joke). (Sorry, Emily!! I couldn't resist that one)


I got inspired by managing to get ONE of Grace's friends over to play so while I was at it, I invited all of the girls from last year's preschool class to come over and play one afternoon for a couple hours.

The one little girl could not make it at the same time as the others, but Grace did manage to see all of her old buddies from preschool before heading off to new adventures in Kindergarten. 

None of these girls are in her kindergarten class since we are at a different school than last year.

They had a good time giggling and playing together.

 Just to ease some of my "MOTHER GUILT" that I put upon myself, I went ahead and bought party favors and cupcakes and juice and let them have a little unbirthday party for Grace since we were out of town and didn't celebrate her real birthday with friends back in March.  Grace was thrilled seeing as how she has spent every month since her birthday saying things like "When I have my birthday party I'll........".  It's a good thing she doesn't have a good solid concept of time or she might have gotten a little impatient with me seeing as how the party was only a mere five months late.

They didn't seem to mind at all.

 And I didn't tell the parents.....I didn't want to get into the whole bring-a-present-because-I-heard-the-words-birthday-and-party-in-the-same-sentence discussion.

How late can you have a little girl's birthday party and it not be too late???

Apparently five months is not too long to wait.

Happy Birthday (again) Grace!!!

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Playing and Praying

Grace and Grant in a peaceful moment during the first weeks John and Emily started school....the two little ones enjoyed some long days of playing together while the big ones were off pursuing their higher education.

Grace started school a couple weeks after public school did.

She's taken an interest in learning to roller skate.  So far she does pretty well, but I don't think the interest will last very long.   She really enjoys riding her bicycle right now.

Grant rarely gets his truck out anymore.  David brought home a big boy bike for him (John's old one) and now he is tearing around the cul-de-sac on the me heart failure.

I told a babysitter the other day as I left that it was only a matter of time before he just busts himself falling off that bike.  I told her where the ice packs were if that moment came while she was watching him.
 He has NO FEAR while on a bike.

And now for the newest fun around the house.....

we like to call it 'ball on a string'......original, I know.

I may be repeating myself.  I don't think I've posted these before. 

I got tired of pitching a ball to my son to only have him swing and miss then have to chase the ball down just to do it all over again.

David suggested I hang a ball from the garage ceiling and let him swing at that.  Problem solved.

I hung a hollow plastic baseball from a string tied to the frame of the garage door.

Grace and Grant will stand for ages swinging at the darn thing.

I just wish David had thought of it sooner, like three hundred missed pitches sooner.
Sometimes I even catch John or Emily taking a swing at the ball.

The other fun pasttime of body surfing on Mom's old skateboard has been given a new twist by Grant....

walk up the sidewalk a couple houses and then come FLYING down the hill face first on Mom's old skateboard.

If the crazy bike riding doesn't manage to knock out a few baby teeth, I'm sure this little stunt will do the trick!!

I just try not to watch when he's out playing....well, you know.....not watch while I'm still really watching just to be sure he stays safe.

So while they are doing a lot of playing outside lately, I'm doing a whole lot of praying....for things like baby teeth, knees, heads and noses to stay safe!! 

Monday, September 27, 2010

Grant being Grant

This is his "Go Away, Mom!!" face and gesture.

Usually indicating he's guilty of SOMETHING.

Not trying for an indecent shot, just wanted to show you what a baked little guy he's gotten over the summer.
His buns virtually glow in the dark compared to his back.
His legs aren't AS TAN as the rest of him since he's in waist deep water at  the pool a lot.

He is an "I CAN DO IT MYSELF" kind of kid.
He completely manages his own clothes now.  He picks them out and dresses by himself.  I usually don't even tell him to go get dressed.  He'll do it by himself before he ever comes out of his room some mornings.

Now with winter and warmer clothes needed, I'm guessing he'll have to accept a little help this fall with jeans and long sleeves and socks.

Raisin Bran is one of his favorite kinds of cereal....they don't make his favorite kind which would be named

Raisin Bran  Cereal

I think he looks like "Mikey" from the Life cereal commercials.

One of his many attempts to ditch a costume before I snap his picture

Some of his funny expressions

He loves his smoothies!  He'll drink one just as large as the other kids drink.

Not much original.....just trying to get some pictures off of my camera now that Blogger decided to work.

Puppies are doing great.  Some are over three pounds now.  A few are taking multiple steps on all four feet.  It's fun to watch them wobble around now walking.

Most have their eyes completely open.

I've even heard a few vicious sounding barks coming from the puppy pile!

Pictures of them later.

Friday, September 24, 2010

Two Weeks Old Now

We stopped weighing them,

but I am guessing most of them have hit the two pound mark now.

This is a picture of the fatties in the litter.  They are snoozing while their much skinnier brothers and sisters get a chance to eat first.

Little red is now not so little anymore.....the white male is now the smallest.

Yesterday I began to see some little eyes beginning to open up.

Probably by tomorrow they will actually be able to SEE what it is they are nursing on.....maybe that will stop some of the nastiness of nursing on the wrong parts of Meg.

Their little tails go a hundred miles an hour while they eat.

  They get into some pretty serious territorial battles for a spot at the feed trough.

One red puppy is standing on his back feet in this picture.  They are all starting to take their first steps and not crawl everywhere.
Nothing cuter than watching a puppy wobble around when it can't see where it's going.

Well nothing cuter, except maybe watching their little face while the eat.

All thirteen won't even fit at the dinner table at the same time now. 
We feed them in shifts, putting half of them in a separate box while the smaller puppies get some time to eat first without having to fight so hard for a spot.

Here are the smaller pups in the litter.

I know.... You're welcome!