29 June 2013

I Can Run But I Can't Hide

My plan to wear the kids out so they would sleep backfired on me.  Both kids talked in their beds for two hours before they feel asleep (ooh, maybe they'll sleep in!) and then they were both up about an hour earlier than they usually are.

My theory is this: they think to themselves "Mom plans so many fantastic activities for us, we should sleep as little as possible in order to maximize our participation in all the fun!"

This morning Daphne was desperate to swim, and once we got out there they were playing so well I knew it was my opportunity to enjoy my iced coffee and my book that's due in three days but I haven't started yet. 

But of course, you know how it goes, I sat down, they ran to me, Christian kept trying to steal my coffee, then he grabbed my phone and threw it in the pool, and as I ran to get my phone he got my coffee.  (Sneaky little bugger.)

I decided to hide under the grape arbor where David put together a lovely bench swing.

They found me. 

So we made paint (using this recipe...although I have issues with being able to properly thicken things so we used paintbrushes and it was kind of like watercolors).  They thought the painting was fun but then they were starving. 

After lunch and an I-blinked-and-almost-missed-it tiny nap, we went back outside where I managed to bribe them into happiness with this Wendy's Frosty-like recipe.  I found the recipe today, during the tiny naptime, because while they are usually very happy with the fruit/veggie smoothies I make them, I knew today I needed to step it up.  Bring my A-game.  Pull out the big guns (chocolate).  This experiment recipe ended up being a winner, and I see it being a staple in our lives this summer. (The recipe calls for almond milk, but I just used whole cow milk and it was great.) 

I see mom's coffee

I see mom

Other than a few tense moments, mainly the phone in the pool and Christian guzzling the coffee, we had a pleasant summer day where they swam together and explored together and also did some screaming and hollering at each other (all in love, I'm sure). 

Maybe they'll be so tired from their full day that they'll sleep many long hours tonight.   Maybe also fairies will clean my house while I sleep and maybe a mysterious benefactor will leave blueberries and raspberries and one million dollars on my kitchen counter because I feel like all of those items would be put to good use here.  Maybe my phone will heal from its watery trauma.  Yes, maybe all these things will happen. 

28 June 2013

Summertime: When Swimtime Doubles as Bathtime

Wait, what?  Did I just admit that outloud?

Two days ago I was wearing rain boots and today we were roasting, but we were joyfully roasting because summer is so wonderful. 

Today was Daph's last day at VBS, even though she told me she wants to go to Bible School for forever.  We should be those people who just hop around to all the VBS's we can find.

My current goal is that D will be so tired from VBS, and now both she and Christian will be so tired from our pool playdate this afternoon, that they will both sleep many long hours because David will be gone all day and night long tomorrow.  We'll see how it works out for me.

Speaking of David, he told me that he couldn't fall asleep after he got home from work the other night, so his idea for a sleep aid is to pray because the devil won't want him to pray so he'll make David fall asleep instead.  Haha!  Totally sound and not sacrilegious logic there.

26 June 2013

VBS Makes Her Life Worth Living

I took Daph's picture to commemorate her first ever VBS and this is what I got from her:

Why, I ask?  Why?

She was so happy once we got to church.  When I picked her up afterward I asked if she would be OK with going to Bible School everyday this week.  She said, "Will you take me there?"

"Yes," I answered.

"Will you leave me there all by myself and my teachers will take care of me?"


Then she yelled "Yay!" and gave me a big hug.  There is such love between us.

Day two I tried for another picture.

Obviously that went well.

Anyways, she's loving VBS, and everyday when I drop her off I feel a stab of guilt for not being a VBS volunteer and just taking advantage of all the other nice volunteers who are taking care of my girl for the week.  And then Christian and I hop in the car and I have only him for 2.5 hours and the guilt quickly gives way to joy.  Not really sure what that says about me, but probably nothing good.

(For the record, I DID volunteer before I had kids.  Lots of times.  So maybe it's OK to not right now?  Plus it would be awful of me to ruin Daphne's life by staying at church with her.)

My only big beef is that I always hear how exhausted little ones are after big activities like this.  Long naps, early bedtime, a quieter afternoon at the least.  For some reason the opposite happens in our house as Daphne flies higher than a kite in the energy category for the rest of the day.  She says things like "I need some more food so I can have some more energy!" and I'm like "How about let's fast for the rest of the day?"

Other than VBS, we're plugging through a busy week of David working loads of overtime, but it's OK because starting Sunday he has 10 days off and it's vacation time.  Not like going-anywhere-special vacation time, just free-of-work vacation time.  I hear the weather is supposed to be nice and hot, which sounds to me like perfect summer vacation weather. 

24 June 2013

Instagram Wrap Up

Now that I'm using the tablet to take tons of pictures but don't want to be in Instagram-posting crazy person, I'll have to dump photos here instead. 

The kids and I went to Albany on Saturday leaving David with a quiet morning at home before he left for work.  I came home to the CUTEST EVER little garden box for my herbs.  I said to David, "We should leave you home alone more often!" and he said, "I'm very productive when you guys are gone but I would miss you. "

Well, isn't that nice. 

Still, I got an herb garden out of the deal.  Right now it has two basil plants and a stevia.  I'm super excited to see what I can do with a stevia plant.  And the most recent issue of Hobby Farm Home had an article with great tips on storing basil over the winter, so I would like another plant or two to keep me from having to buy basil ever again. 

I've been doing a lot of this in the past few days:

Lest you think I spent hours in a strawberry patch, I actually did not.  Last week we were up at our favorite grocery store where they had flats of day old strawberries from one of the local farms for dirt cheap.  I paid $14 for 30lbs.  Can you even believe it?  Then Grandpa hooked me up with a few more buckets on Saturday, so basically I am a lady of leisure this year with the strawberries. 

I just get shivers of happiness when filling the freezer and cupboards with fruit for the winter.  Shivers.  I get giddy thinking about blueberry season starting up.  And then peaches and pears!!!  Wahoo!!  (Simple minds, simple pleasures, that's what my dad always says.)

While working on strawberries my kids destroy the kitchen. 

I made this Tomato and Basil Frittata last week.  It was so, so, so good, but will mostly only be good if you like basil.  I left out the ham because we had sausage on the side, but the recipe is easy and fast and would be a good crowd pleaser.  For people who like basil, of course. 

Our church's VBS is this week.  It's the first event that I've taken Daphne to and dropped her off and left.  She's done BSF and Sunday School, but this is her first Big Girl/School-Like event.  I took lots of pictures this morning for her send off, and then her separation anxiety was at basically -10% when I dropped her off, so I'll have to share pictures later and her reactions to her week.  I have a feeling she's having the Best Time Ever and will never want to come home again. 

18 June 2013

Father's Day Weekend at the Beach (Plus Photo Overload!)

We got back last night from spending a couple days at the Washington beach.  Daphne is still there getting to camp in Grandma and Papa's trailer, one of her most favorite things to do.

I like sleeping in rooms with beds and showers, so David, Christian and I stayed at what is now my most favorite little motel ever.  Actually, I think 'inn' would be a better descriptive word.    Cutest place I have ever seen and ridiculously cheap.  I hope we can go back sometime and stay longer.

Fireplaces and full kitchens!  I think we paid $86. Cheap.

trying to escape off the deck.  there are firepits and picnic tables down there

wow! checking his face out on the tablet

It took Christian a few minutes to decide if he wanted to touch the sand, but once he figured it was safe he was off and running.  Even the water didn't scare him (until he got run over by a few waves). 

love when you can drive onto the beach

kite flying

catching some rays

aren't we just the cutest

 Now today it's just us with Christian.  This morning we took him on a mini hike on Mt Tabor that ended at a playground, and while he climbed and slid and spent a great deal of time driving a fake Gator (or maybe it's a Jeep, now that I think about it?  That would make more sense),  I got to sit and read my favorite magazine with a cup of coffee from a favorite coffee shop.   Taking not-babies to the playground is the best thing ever.  It is also helpful to take along a husband. 

not kidding: most wonderful/useful magazine ever

13 June 2013

First Ever Instagram-Based Post

IMPORTANT UPDATE #1:  My sliver has healed itself.  From now on I am never, ever going to try to get a sliver out.  I kept an anti-bacterial oil on it and after 3 days the sliver is gone and you can't even tell it was there.  Miraculous sliver news.  I've always hated slivers, so that's why this newly learned information is very exciting to me. 

IMPORTANT UPDATE #2:  I can now use Instagram pictures in places other than Instagram.  This is why I'm posting two days in a row, because now I can share the pictures from Tuesday's Shriner's trip.  Which is actually nothing exciting because basically every Shriner's trip is the same.

When Daph needs new shoes we make a visit every other week for 8 weeks to get the shoes fitted and made.  This happens probably every 3 months.  Sometimes I feel like doctor's appointments rule our lives.

C trying to escape the tiny room.  Note the face of angst.

Looking out the window provides 30s of distraction

Sabrina is just fabulous to Daphne.  Daphne loves her and paints her pictures and looks forward to getting to go see her.  Sabrina lets Daphne draw on her shoe molds and even took us on a tour of their lab a few weeks ago.  There were a lot of legs and feet all over the place.  (Fake ones.)  This spring Sabrina did a presentation with Daphne and her crazy feet as the focus.  I wish we could have gone and given her a standing ovation. 

This week's visit was extra special, though, because the hospital had had a toy drive and each little patient got to choose a new toy at their visit.  Part of me feels badly when Daphne benefits from these types of events, because I guess I feel like the toys are for 'needy' children?  And D is hardly needy.  I mean, she feels like her life is pretty hard because she doesn't have her own tiny vacuum cleaner, but other than that she has everything she needs to make it through each day.

Then I think about how many hours she spends sitting in tiny doctor's offices and I'm thankful for those who donate to these drives so that she can have something fun to help make the hours fly faster. 

After Shriner's we went to The Spaghetti Factory for lunch because I had realized I haven't been there in 8 or 9 years.

We let the kids run along the riverfront for awhile in the hopes of getting some wiggles out before lunch.  It didn't really work.  Christian was a mess and ate his crayons.

David said, "We should come here sometime without the kids.  I think that would be more fun."

I do believe that he is correct.

12 June 2013

Instagram is for Smart People

This week I took a major jump in technology and joined Instagram.   It feels like attempting rocket science trying to figure it out.

We don't have smart phones (we're not smart enough) but David has been wanting a tablet for ages.  We were chatting with one of his work friends, who owns a computer shop and is our adviser on all things computery, and he recommended the Samsung Galaxy.  Then what do you know but the very next day, that same tablet was on Groupon for mega % off.  It's like God was telling us to buy it.

Now David spends hours playing Star Wars Angry Birds and I try to figure out how to make Instagram work.  So far I don't know how to erase the pictures I don't want to share, and I don't know how to share pictures anywhere else (like the blog), but just a few minutes ago I accidently found that people were patiently waiting for me to approve them as followers and I just had no idea they were waiting.  It's been a pretty wild ride so far.    

Word on the street is that it is very uncool to take pictures with a tablet.  If our kids were older they would be so embarrassed of us.  Still, despite the embarrassment, we took the tablet to Shriners yesterday because it's way easier than hauling my DSLR around.  But since I don't know how to share pictures I don't get to show them to you.  They are really good pictures though, so at least you'll have something to look forward to in the future.

Meanwhile,  I can share camera pictures.

Like of Daphne, who likes to memorize books and then 'read' them to Christian.

This afternoon I got out the little Ikea finger puppets and she put them on her fingers and started telling stories for us.

She's really good at story-telling, something I know she gets from David.  Although we did have this conversation at bedtime tonight:

Daph: "Can you tell me a story about when you were a little kid?"  (This is her most recent addition to our bedtime routine.  I ran out of stories like 3 weeks ago.)
Me: "I don't know any more stories."
Daph: "Well Daddy knows stories."
Me: "I know, he's better at telling stories than I am."
Daph: "Daddy is NOT better than you!"

That's right, girl.  Preach it.

Wednesday morning around 8:45 is Christian's favorite part of the week: Garbage Truck Time.  This fall we have to be at BSF earlier on Wednesdays than we have the past few years so I hope we won't have to start missing this thrilling weekly event. 

My sister took a few photos at Christian's baby dedication on Mother's Day.  It was fun to get to dedicate Christian with dear friends who were dedicating their daughter, Truth.  Truth's big sister is named Daphne as well, and I like these pictures because I think they were taken when Ken was sharing how we both had Daphnes, and then how Truth's and Christian's names go together as well if you're thinking in a Biblical/Jesus/God way.  I had never even thought of that connection before.   How special of us to be so name coordinated. 

The kids can use these pictures in their wedding slide show someday.

And something that I didn't take a picture of...I got a big, deep sliver the other day that I just cannot get out.  So I've done what any other logical person would do and just stuck a band-aid on it and am basically waiting for my thumb to die and fall off.  I'll let you know how that goes.

That's all for now.  Let's see if I can go figure out any more of that Instagram business. 

08 June 2013

How Many Times Can I Say "We Love Summer?"

Skinned knees and dirty feet.  It seems that's what little boys are made of.

45 minutes in her bed for a rest time, just because she wanted to.  She finds her room to be a peaceful, restful place.  Exactly what it's supposed to be.

Pretty fingers and toes.

A morning in the park, because Daddy had to work until 6 A.M and could probably use a quiet house to sleep in.

You say, "ready! set! go!" and he takes off running.

Hide-and-Seek in the bushes.  

It's not even summer yet and it's already my favorite of all the summers.