Friday, August 30, 2013

Carnivals and School

I know it has been awhile.  For all those that check frequently and wonder if I realize how long it has been, I do.  I have about 15 minutes right now to blog.  My life has been turned into a foggy haze in the past two weeks.  Here goes…

Sonnenburg Mennonite Church had a carnival a couple weeks ago.  I had saved the paper so I wouldn’t forget.  It was free for ages 2 – grade 6 and their families.  I didn’t really know what to expect, but we had a lot of fun.  The girls dug in a hay pile to find pennies.

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They made Gak (well, chose the color they wanted it to be).  Madison is STILL playing with this stuff.  It is pretty cool.  They got arms painted.  You could get your face painted, but Madison (and by default) Ellie chose arms.  Madison got a rainbow.  Ellie got a flower.  Both girls sat very still while they did it. They had animal paintings with cut outs for their heads.  They took your pictrue and you could pick it up later in the night.  We now have a picture of (ready for the alliteration…) Ellie the Elephant and Madison the Monkey.  (Their choice, not mine.)

Madison’s highlight – the train.  She LOVES these things and can sit forever on them.  In fact, I think she did sit for at least a 15-20 mintues continuous train ride.  Ellie tried the train – again.  And I had to perform a rescue mission – again.  I say, at least she keeps trying!

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Madison also enjoyed the pony rides.  Ellie did not attempt these.

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Ellie’s highlight – the meal.  The poor girl was hungry by the time we got the (free) food.  We had a hot dog, chips, drink, popcorn, ice cream sundaes, and choice of cookie.  Madison chose frosted sugar with sprinkles; Ellie chose (really, chose) the one with M&Ms.  It was good.

We also had the Machinery Sale.  Jeremy purchased a power washer for $20 that he has had fun with – cleaning parts of the driveway, writing words in the driveway, etc.  The girls and I just went and looked around.  We bought fries from the youth group trailers.  We also had a lot of  people park in driveway – people we know.  We just know a lot of people who like to come!  It is great.  And the highlight of that… Having Uncle Luke’s Jeep parked in your driveway.  I am not kidding when I say, the girls played for AN HOUR (maybe a little longer) right here.

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Since then, I started the school routine.  I get up at 5:30am.  The girls have to be up at 6:25.  We have to be out the door by 6:40.  Thankfully, they get fed wherever they go.  They go to grandparents’ two days a week and Miss Emily three days a week.  The drop off with the grandparents’ obviously, I had no concerns.  On the first day with Miss Emily, I was a bit nervous that Ellie would be clinging and wailing when I left.  In fact, she shed not one tear.  Madison, however, was clinging a little.  It was an answer to prayers.  Because, let me tell you, it would have been hard to drive away with Ellie (or Madison) screaming at the door.  The girls are adjusting well, but it is so early.  I don’t think it is fair.  Clarification…. Madison usually will be up before I have to get her up – 5:45, 6, 6:15.  Only one morning did I actually have to wake her up.  I am having a hard time waking up, having energy for a day of kids, coming home to play with my two, making supper, doing the nighttime routine, and doing anything else except sitting on the couch.  Maybe it will get better….

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I am fighting a cold right now, finding little time to rest, and even though we have a long weekend, see little rest involved (we are going to a wedding out of state Sunday over Monday).  So, please pray for my health and enthusiasm.  It is an adjustment that lots of families make (people going back to work or just working).  We have done it before and we will make it again; it just takes time.

Thursday, August 15, 2013

Last Day Fun

It is not really my last day before school starts, but it is one of the last days.  So, I decided to make it a day for the girls and I to have some fun.  Madison wanted to go to the library to play with the trains.  So, that was our first stop.  When we arrived, we had to greet the “kids” that are always outside reading.  It is something we do almost every time we go to Orrville library; today was no exception. 

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We happened to run into Grandpa Yoh walking in to the library as well; that was an exciting surprise. 

The trains were on the agenda, but they only happened for a few minutes because we discovered something that we had never seen before – a castle with princes, princesses, kings, queens, knights, and horses!  Madison loved it and spent most of the hour there. 

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We walked out happy and with a bag FULL of books to enjoy.  (I read 8 of these right after Madison woke up from her nap.)

Next stop: Wayne Street Park to meet Luke, Lilli, and Sam.  It was fun to run, play, chase, slide, and laugh together.  It was fun for me to have a chance to talk with Luke for a little bit too.

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Third stop: Wendy’s.  Madison chose her favorite restaurant.  If it was up to me, it would have been somewhere else, but today was about them.  Plus, they do both eat well here.  Ellie was very entertained by the baby that sat next to her.  She is in love with babies right now – real babies, baby dolls, pictures of babies… if it has to do with babies, she is all about it!

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Last stop: Faithful Little Cupcake.  This was the destination Madison as most excited about.  She really wanted a purple cupcake, but settled for a pink (all strawberry) one instead. 

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Ellie, because she doesn’t know how to voice her opinion about which cupcake would be best, got the cookie monster cupcake.  She enjoyed it, but was incredibly worried/confused/hypnotized by the eyes on Cookie Monster; hence the reason I didn’t get a smiling picture from her before she ate the cupcake.

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I just had a confetti cake with white buttercream frosting and sprinkles.  We brought home a red velvet one for Jeremy.

We came home for nap time, book reading, trike ride, throwing rocks in the river time, supper time, and super fun bubble bath time.  It was a good day.

Firefighter’s Chicken BBQ

This annual event is a highlight in the town.  We went to it last year despite possible rain.  This year, we just had to bundle up!  Madison was looking forward to it because we had told her there would be pony rides.  Last year, the ponies didn’t come because of the rain.  This year, we were ready! 

We stood in a loooong line to get our 1/2 chicken, roll, nutty buddy, applesauce, and chips.  The girls, surprisingly, ate some of the chicken.  Madison, if you ask her, will say, “I don’t like chicken.”  But apparently, this chicken has won her over… a little.  All through supper we fielded questions about ponies.  Finally, the time came to go to the ponies. 

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But we were sidetracked by Lerch’s Donuts – one of Jeremy’s favorites.  (I enjoy them, too, when they are super fresh; kinda like the krispy kremes are only really good when fresh.) 

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Madison rode on the ponies

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and rode on the ponies

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and rode on the ponies.  We ran out of money to donate, or I think she would have kept riding!

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Ellie looked at the ponies, touched a pony, and that is it.  No willingness to ride – let alone sit on a pony – from that one!  (Notice how tightly she is clinging to me when she is close to the pony.)  My favorite part of the picture of just Ellie and me – her hair… just check it out :)

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Then, we went to the other big event – the tractor pull.  Had we not been riding ponies so long, Madison could have competed in her age bracket.  I guess you have to have something to look forward to next year, right?  We cheered on those we knew that go to our church instead.

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It was a good evening.

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

August Birthday Bash

Our family has a lot of birthdays at the end of July and beginning of August.  So, we usually gather somewhere for July birthdays.  This year, Nate and Jen had a joint birthday party for two of their kids, and we were all invited.  In August, my parents often host because it is my dad’s and my twin brothers’ birthdays.    I enjoy the family gatherings.  We usually made it when we lived in Columbus, but not those impromptu kind of gatherings.  So, I value all the times we get together because 1) we’ve missed some of them, and 2) I know not every family has these times – peaceful gatherings full of laughter and playing children.  I am thankful.

The girls and I got there first; Jeremy was just getting off work and wanted to get a shower before heading over.  As I unloaded underbaked snickerdoodle bars (I have only got these right once, but I keep trying because when they are baked right, they are amazing!) and corn on the cob, the girls started getting acquainted with Grandma and Papa’s house again.  Soon, Lilli and Sam arrived.  It was enough for the kids to get into their swimming suits for sprinkler fun, little pool fun,

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but most of all wet slide fun!!!  There was a mattress for a soft landing,

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“catchers” to slow the kids down,

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a sprinkler to “wet your bum and go faster,”

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and a never ending line of more, more, more!

The party got underway after Ben and Steph’s family and Nate and Jen’s family arrived.  The kids loved being outside.  The three boys worked and worked and worked at digging – we don’t know why they dig, but they love to work, especially Paxon! 

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Ellie likes to be a part of things, too.  She really likes sitting on the four wheeler; Landen has a hard time sharing it.  I can see why since the girl just sits there…. she doesn’t know how to drive it yet!

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The adults, for bits and pieces of time, were able to just sit and relax.  It was good.

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Of course, this was a birthday bash.  So, we celebrated with the youngest first, Megan!

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Then, Lilli!

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Then, Grandpa, Luke, and Ben!

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Sunday, August 4, 2013

MCC Relief Sale…

The first weekend in August always hosts the MCC Relief Sale.  It is a time where people gather, eat, bid on handmade quilts and woodwork, and fellowship.  I enjoy it … mostly I enjoy the food.  We went on Friday night thinking it might not be so busy, but I think it was super busy.  I think what actually happened is that people came to look at the things for sale and eat, but there were no auctions or activities going on, so everyone was trying to use the same space at the same time.  Whatever.  I got there in time to purchase a dozen of the greasiest, best homemade egg rolls ever – a tradition at this Ohio relief sale.  My mom and dad’s church (Dayspring Mennonite Church) was gifted the tradition by a group of Laotians who had been doing it for years.  My mom helped out this year, and said they had ordered 250 pounds of cabbage!  Can you imagine?  Anyway, they sold out by 1pm on Saturday, so I am glad I got some on Friday. 

We went back on Saturday because Madison wanted to ride the “train.” We couldn’t do this Friday because it was raining and the train wasn’t running.  The benefit – we got an extra tractor shuttle ride AND more delicious food!  Ellie tried the train as well, but didn’t make it but a tiny lap in the grass (if you look closely in the second picture, you can see her crumpled face); maybe next year….

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The girls also really enjoyed the little table with the wooden tic-tac-toe board.  They played with that for quite awhile.  There were some really cool marble ramps/drops to play with as well. 

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I made some sweet corn the next day for supper.  It is from the field in Mooreland on his grandpa’s land.  Jeremy’s heart is happy every year when the corn is ready.  It is especially good this year.  Madison pounded down two ears like a professional, and it didn’t take long for Ellie to catch on to how to get it off the cob either!

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Until next time, have a great time!