Friday, May 30, 2014

The Garden

Jeremy takes on the garden plot every year.  This year was a little easier than last because he didn’t have to turn a grassy plot into a garden.  As others have been, we have been waiting to get things planted.  On Monday while we were hiking at Wooster Memorial Park, he was continuing to build new garden structures to assist tomatoes, cucumbers, and beans in growing.  On Monday night, he and I worked til dark (which only amounted to about an hour by the time the kids were in bed) planting a few things that were almost dead from sitting in their greenhouse containers so long.  By Tuesday morning, the plants were already reviving in their new garden homes.  The girls assisted us in the effort on Tuesday morning….

Digging

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Planting

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and watering.  Ellie ended the morning scared a bug had flew in her ear; she cried for a good amount of time.  I am sure this did not help her fear of bugs.  We still have a few things to get in, but that will get done this weekend. 

That afternoon, the rains came out and they ventured out once again. 

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Thursday, May 29, 2014

Memorial Day

We had a spontaneous family gathering (missing one family… hope you had a good day, too, Ben and Steph!) on Monday.  We decided to go for a short hike with the kids at the Wilderness Center in the morning before meeting up with the rest of the gang for lunch.  Lilli joined us for the hike.  It was fun to hike through the woods.  We found a couple small geocaches – so no treasures to exchange, but a hunt nonetheless. 

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We looked out over the first small pond in the duck blind.  Most everyone posed for individual pictures on the way out… Lilli thought the background was so nice, and she found a feather.

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And we hiked up the tall tower.  Thanks to Lilli, we even got a family picture!

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While there was construction around the dam, we managed to get around the machines to feed the geese and fish.  This was the highlight for the kids.  As was their own snack.

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From here, we headed to Grandma DeeDee’s house for lunch with everyone else.  Besides a tasty lunch, there was time to jump on the trampoline, slide down the “water slide,”

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play at the “water park,”

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explore the playhouse, and play catch.  Finally, we headed to Wooster Memorial Park for an afternoon hike before saying good-bye to Nate’s family.  Ellie stayed at Papa’s to play with him after waking up from her nap.

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Some of us ended back at Grandma’s to eat leftovers before the night ended.  It was a beautiful day weather-wise, and it was filled with good memories.

Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Last Day of Preschool

Tuesday was Madison’s last day of preschool (year one).  Oak Grove has a great preschool program.  I like that they have 4 year olds come for two days, and then 5 year olds come three days.  I think it is a great way to build skills and get kids ready.  Plus, as they get a little older that third morning a week would help them build a little stamina for kindergarten.  Well, Madison did this year, but will not be back three days next year because I just don’t want to drive her there that often and I want her to get to know some kids in her own district.  Hopefully, next year will be as great as this year has been.

So, for the last day, the kids came up right after the normal preschool day.  They sat and waited for their turn.  As their name was called they came up, shook hands with the teacher, and received a certificate of completion.  Madison was so cute and proud of herself that day.  It was so fun to watch.

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Afterwards we had a potluck lunch with the other families.  Before leaving, Madison hugged half the kids in preschool – as many as she could.  It is such an awkward thing to watch preschoolers hug.  Maybe others aren’t as “huggy” as our family is, or it just took them off guard.  Regardless, it was fun to watch.

Here is the picture at the beginning of the year and the end.  She grew 2 inches this year. learned how to stand in line, and a good number of letters.  She almost can write her name – all the letters are represented, just not always in the right order.  (That is why we have a second year…)DSC_2434     DSC_3552

And, now, it is time for summer vacation. (It will be our first summer vacation with a school age kid….)

The Last Day of Swimming

This is our last session for sure until fall.  I figure we will hit the pool somewhere this summer, and we can work on all the skills they have learned.  The key is that I can feel like I can now take them by myself during the day because they are more comfortable in the water.  My mom and dad came for their last day, and my dad was my photographer during Ellie’s session.  So, here it is in picture form:

First swims of the day and getting the belt on

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Blowing bubbles

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Swimming through the hoop and with a kickboard – notice I am not holding onto her for either one!!  (This is major progress.)

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The backstroke – this is her least favorite because her ears usually get wet.

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Playing in the kiddie pool – again, she would not even let go of me when we started this in January!

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After swimming, Ellie was able to go spend time with Grandma and Papa DeeDee.  She and Papa played on the trampoline; she even learned to really jump on it!  Grandma and her played on it too.  She convinced Grandma she needed a blankie with tags on it, so Grandma made some for her house.  (I forgot to send one for naps.)  She had her nap there and then joined Madison and I for Madison’s swim lessons.  (In between there, Madison had her last day of preschool; see previous post.)

Madison’s last swim, in pictures:

Waiting for instructions, so excited!

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working on the backstroke – or ballerina kick!

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Swimming with just a kickboard and noodle – no belt this session!  Determination in her eyes

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Working on her diving form:

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Back floating Starfish

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Happy swimming, everyone!

Sleepover!

This Sunday we had my nephews, Landen and Cale, over for a sleepover.  I am not sure that is the correct lingo when talking with little boys, but that is what we girls call it!.  My girls were EXCITED!  I have learned as the kids have gotten older, that extra kids around the house is not really that much work because they really entertain each other; so you do less entertaining and get more done. 

They arrived for supper on Sunday – pancakes, sausage links, and eggs.  This is a no fail meal in our family, so I knew they would eat well.  After supper, we called Grandma Ediger to come join the fun.  Jeremy had the idea to take them treasure hunting – aka geocaching.  On the way to the park to find the treasure, Cale said, “I didn’t really want to come to your house, but this is fun.”  I am pretty sure the idea of coming to a house of girls is not too exciting; I am glad we could break through!  We walked through the entire woods – muddy spots and all.  Until we finally spied it hiding under a log!  (Jeremy took a picture on his phone, but I haven’t gotten them on the computer yet…)

We explained the geocaching rule: If you take something, you have to leave something.  Jeremy had brought a little something for everyone to leave, so they all got to pick out their treasure.  Cale picked out a marble; Landen chose a matchbox car; Madison took a (broken) beaded bracelet; and Ellie stuck with the Shrek toy Jeremy had given her to exchange.  (One man’s junk is another man’s treasure, right?) 

We ran on home, jumped in the bathtub (two girls, then two boys), got some drinks, read 4 books (one for each), and settled in on the floor beds. 

The next morning they were up by 7:02; I am not sure if they all woke up then or if Madison woke them.  Either way, they came down and were ready for breakfast.  I got cereal for some, reheated pancakes for others. 

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Everyone got dressed for the day.  Then, the big event:  We all walked Cale to school!

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I wasn’t sure how long it would take, so we got there plenty early.  This ended up being really good because I forgot to bring Cale’s lunch with us for his field trip.  The little ones and I marched back home.  I left them with Jeremy and ran (literally) back up to the school with the lunch.  I thought it was no big deal since I got it there by the start of the school day.  BUT the school had already called my brother to check on the missing lunch – oh, the incompetent sitter I looked like!  Oh, well, it was all fine.

The rest of the day the kids played with stuffed animals and babies upstairs while I changed the bed sheets and cleaned up floor beds.  Then, they helped make cookies and played play-doh.  Then, we went outside to swing and play on the slide.  It was a beautiful day, so we had lunch on the back deck.  They laid down for a nap a little earlier than normal, so that they would all be up in time to go pick up Cale.  I think Landen was the only one that didn’t sleep, but he did stay up in the room. 

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We walked back up to the school to pick up Cale and play at the playground.  By the time we were ready to leave, Ben and Steph were set to arrive to pick up the boys.  I think everyone had a great time.  It is good to bond with our boy cousins!