Wednesday, November 30, 2011

I'm alive


Our Computer was really slow and then crashed so forgive my blogging hiatus. Catching up with some random photo's now:

Penny and Dominic LOVE perler beads. Dominic has discovered that he can make ninja stars and tron discs out of them and so we now have zillions of those. Penny has started to grasp the order of doing these not just in a myriad of random colors. See the flower with the different colored petals? That's the first time she's attempted that.

I found Michael and Penny like this one morning when I was buzzing around the house. Guess he couldn't find me and went with second best mommy in the house. =)

Sometimes, Michael makes messes faster than I can clean. It is in those times, that it just makes more sense to stop cleaning and redirect him so that he make one small mess instead of destroying the entire kitchen. Unfortunately, I didn't get that memo on this particular day. Free play is good for them right?

Dominic is ending another season of flag football. He's a foot taller than everyone on his team this year (he's just the oldest on the team is all). He's doing really well and has made some killer plays and quite a few touchdowns. One play he rushed the quarterback and tried to block the throw but the throw was made and he then rushed down the field and caught up with the kid who caught the ball before he got to the end zone. Awesome play. Dad won't stop talking about it.

Michael likes to walk the small ditch between the grass and the fence. Its his little path.

This picture just about did me in. Penny lovingly tries to put chapstick on Michael and he surprisingly obliges. Hilarious, I tell ya!

To keep toddlers entertained. Stuff soft toys down their shirts and let them struggle to get them out.

Once they get it out they will spend the next 5 minutes trying to figure out how to put it back in.

Fun had by all. I love this grin.

Penny snapped a few pictures of football mom watching from the sidelines.

I LOVE this age. He's so darn cuddly and every night that I put him to bed I just want to freeze time. He's big enough to do things and not NEED me every hour of the day, but he still needs my cuddles. Its a good life. I love, love, LOVE that he has a favorite stuffed animal. These whales are so loved by Michael.

After getting Michael to bed every night and getting a few minutes of cuddle time in with him, I head over to Penny's room and read her a book or two. She's getting really good at reading from books and will often read a few sentences before she has me take over (I'm a little faster than she is). Its pretty darn cute to see her little finger follow along.

Dominic is a book worm at bed time. He loves it when he reads and reads and reads and then stops to stretch or something and then notices that he's read 70 pages and didn't even realize it. He loves it when that happens. The other day he scared me coming out of his bed after 11 to tel me that he just couldn't put the book down! I love that he's really engrossed in it this year. Books he's read this school year so far are: Animorphs 1-4, The Call of the Wild, The Son of Neptune, The Lost Hero, right now he's reading Holes. I know I'm forgetting some. Anyways, he's a night time book worm.

We went to Disney on Ice with Stella for her birthday. So fun. These two were on the edges of their seats all night.


I taught Dominic and one of Penny's older friends how to knit. They both really enjoyed it. 

Seriously, I love these whales because he loves these whales.

We got a pellet stove installed into the place where our wood burning insert used to be. I LOVE it. We can keep our downstairs nice and cozy and still come out $80 cheaper than our old heating bill that didn't have a cozy downstairs. Love it, can't wait to get the full use out of it come the colder months.


This girl can get silly.
Starfall.com has THE BEST online interactive reading books for kids Penny's age. We even got their one year subscription and got a bunch of bonus books and games we loved it so much. After she's ready for the day she loves to come and do some starfall!


Getting their snuggles in.



We have introduced Michael to the life of Thomas the train. Its a little frustrating for the other kids, but they are getting good at understanding that we have to show Michael how to play with the tracks instead of yell at him for messing it up. Its cute to see them turn into teachers instead of territorial worriers.


but sometimes the box is just more fun.


I love the no pants look with the diaper just barely poking out. I could eat all the cuteness going on in these pictures. I love being a mom.

Dominic loves to play with cardboard and decided to make a wearable train. So funny. Penny loved running around with it on.

Good one Dominic.

Making cookies with 3 helpers takes a bit longer and makes a bigger mess, but it makes the cookies taste better. Just saying. Dominic calls that, adding our secret ingredient of extra love ( I tell him that's why my food always tastes so good)....extra love makes everything taste better.

Squirrels can be taught how to color too.

Dominic always tells me he loves a chubby baby in tight pajamas. I'd have to emphatically agree.
Michael, please don't grow up too fast. We kinda like you.


Thursday, November 10, 2011

Apple Hill

I love Apple Hill. I love that we live so close to Apple Hill. If you've never been, its basically a community of farmers and growers that sell various types of produce all over the community. You can drive from one farm to the next and explore what goods they have. Some of them you can pick yourself, some of them pick for you and have displayed and ready to purchase. They have the most amazing array of apple donuts, pies and apple cider.

I haven't been fond of apple juice since I was a teenager due to drinking some once and then getting sick (not sure if those two were related or not). In the last 4 years, I've finally been able to drink it again and its yummy again (though I still find that I can't drink a lot of it)

Anyways, today we went to one of the farms and they have an animal section for kids to feed the animals and explore. There were only sheep, cows and chickens left as they are closing the animals portion for the winter, but we thoroughly enjoyed them just the same.
I mostly wanted to go because my kids aren't around animals enough and are quite timid (except Michael, he just came unafraid of animals).

I am proud to report that all 3 of my children fed the sheep without the insistance of me. They did it of their own free will. I was VERY proud of them.

He loved it when they "baaaaaaaaa" 'ed. He was fascinated by the sounds they made and I think was shocked that they actually made the sounds that he's seen on TV or that we have told him. Every time they bleeted, he bleeted back. So funny.



See how untimid? He's not an animal wisperer by nature (though he loves animals). I'm going to put him in horseback riding lessons with our homeschool vouchers to try to combat some of his phobia with animals. He is sometimes timid to pet a cat. Needless to say, I was very proud of him.

To feed the cows, stay far back and just toss the feed into the pen. Penny was not about to let the cows eat from her hand. Their moo'ing was quite loud and scared Michael, but from far away he thought it was pretty cool.


He fed the sheep over and over and over and over all by himself. They nibbled on his fingers a few times but it really didn't bother him. He made me kiss his owie and then he moved on (I tried to wipe his hand off before I kissed the sheep slobber).





After the animals, we went to an apple orchard and picked 23 pounds of granny smith apples. I have some applesauce brewing right now that will be perfect for breakfast. I can't wait.

We learned a few things. You don't run through the orchards (perpendicular to the rows) because it breaks the branches, messes with the drip lines and overall its just not good for the orchard. You don't climb up the trees (for the same reason) You twist the apples off their stem otherwise it can break the branches. Penny patiently learned how to twist her apples off. She liked picking all the cute little apples.




Dominic, on the other hand, found some of the biggest granny smith apples I've ever seen. We weighed his biggest one and it was .87 pounds. Eat that in one sitting! he picked a whole two bags full and could have picked tons more. I loved the excitement in his voice when he found a tree with a lot of them that he could reach. The words he chose were music to my soul, "I found apple heaven!"

Picking blueberries in Alaska growing up was a favorite past time of mine. Whenever we found a patch worth sitting and picking at for a long time, we called it blueberry heaven. Those were the best.


Sometimes its just too silly to pick and pick and pick when you have one already in your hands that you'll never finish eating anyways. This little guy had the time of his life and fell asleep only moments after pulling out of the orchard.


Thanks again Apple Hill! You are always so good to us!

Wednesday, November 09, 2011

Halloween 2011

Okay, so I'm finally blogging about Halloween. We had a cup of water spill on our other computer and it pretty much jacked it up and had to be sent in to Dell to fix (we had all the data backed up thankfully). However, our old computer didn't have Picasa on it anymore and frankly....I'm really busy so was grateful for the blogging hiatus. Anyways, Sean re-installed Picasa on the old computer so I really have no excuse to document our lives. Here goes Halloween:


Penny could not decide between two princesses. Trunk or Treating on Saturday she decided on Arial. I was able to put my $20 laminator we got from Costco to use. Can you tell what I made?


Dominic and Michael were black and red ninjas. Dominic picked these costumes out and did a great job getting them to match. If only he had chubby cheeks to match Michael. Also, he was nowhere to be found the whole night so I don't have a single picture of him at the church. We got there 30 minutes late due to his football game and so when we arrived he took off running to make up for lost time. 

Now, don't you just love the cheeks on this ninja?

He loves this costume (I was surprised to say the least. I honestly thought we would end the night with hoodless ninja.)

You should have seen the ninja jump from the kitchen counter to the table. It was incredible! Just kidding. But it is a perfect landing stance.

So on Halloween night we met one of Dominic's friends and went around with them. What ended up actually happening was that we started out together and the older kids ran ahead with the other adults and Sean and I trailed along slowly with Penny and Michael. It was perfect cuz we didn't have to slow Dominic down at all. I think we'll plan to do something like that every year. 

Here are our 2 ninja's and our Belle (she switched costumes to a different princess on Halloween night).

This was the last we saw of Dominic and his friends that night. =)

Sometimes a princess just has to improvise.

I love this little ninja

He wasn't so fond of Sean's mullet wig. He kept trying to take it off.

But Sean was relentless and wore it anyways. For some reason, I love this photo. My husband looks hot (even with a mullet) and my kids are a blurry dream. We had a lot of fun this night and the kids could not get enough of knocking on doors and getting candy.

Sometimes though, you just have to sit down and shake that box of fruit chews! He randomly would sit down and look in his basket often. Other things about Michael. He insisted that the person at the door put the candy in his hand so that he could drop it into his bucket and then yell, "yaaaaaaaaay Michael!" He also tried to walk into just about every house as soon as they opened the door. There was another family right behind us for many houses that had a boy who was Michaels age dressed up as a cow. Michael followed him around trying to pet him.

The other adults with the group that went with Dominic said that they were out and about and they saw a little girl in a Belle costume trip and fall and Dominic immediately sprinted towards her and helped her up to make sure she was okay. He was a little embarrased when he noticed that it wasn't Penny and he'd been talking to her like it was (with his big brother,  "I'm so sad you got hurt voice"), but still helped her up because, well....thats just the gentleman he's always been.

She's definitely our princess.


Again, you just got to inspect that bucket now and then and make sure nothing is falling out.








 
This was a really fun Halloween as all 3 of our kids had a blast. It took 9 days to eat through our candy. We pulled out all the really colorful candy (the kids chose the kinds with no influence from us) to use on our Gingerbread house in a few months. I think that will become a tradition every year as it decreased the candy we ate by a stuffed gallon sized bag.

Tuesday, November 01, 2011

The Biggest Loser and her trainer

We went to a Halloween party at a friends house a few weekends back and finally were able to pull off a costume this year (normally we are totally lame about costumes and don't come up with anything).  Anyways, meet the biggest loser and her trainer. I should have taken before and after pics. =)
This makes my arms look anorexic.

Thanks for a fun party friends!
It was a fun night.
We've already got ideas for next years costume 
(wow, we're on a roll. 2 years in a row perhaps? We'll see if we can pull it off)