Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Softball is done :-)

Matt found Kate asleep one night with Eleanor's sunglasses on. Too cute!

Here is Noah playing his climbing the stairs game.

The girls bring home a lot of artwork at the end of the school year. In the past, I have put up all of the artwork in the hallway to show during the summer, but this year I am displaying one piece at a time in the kitchen, and I will show it here as well. So the first artwork displayed this past week was Zoe's. A lot of the artwork is out of season, but we still enjoy looking at it.

Noah enjoyed the sunshine and the grass during Emily's practice last Thursday.

This was such a perfect evening to watch Emily. It was so nice out!

Matt took Zoe, Emily, and Zach fishing on Monday.

The one fish that was caught.

The spot they went to involved a lot of getting out of the canoe to get over the beaver dams. Fun!

Zoe and Emily thought Matt was leaving them, so they went after him. Silly girls!

Eleanor and Kate had their own fun at home. I made a bad decision and got Eleanor's art bucket out for her to play with while I took a shower and got ready for the day. While I was in the bathroom I heard Eleanor and Kate chanting, "Ants hate glitter! Ants hate glitter!" I figured they were talking about the hair glitter stick that Eleanor bought with her birthday money and they were torturing the ants with it, but I was wrong. The one package of glitter that I did not hide a few years back was in Eleanor's art bucket, and it ended up all over the kitchen floor Monday morning. To make matters worse, they added water to the glitter. Eleanor was happily swimming in the glitter when I discovered her. What a mess! My mom came over to pick me, Eleanor, Kate, and Noah up to go to her house, but she had to wait until I cleaned up the kitchen floor. It looked pretty hopeless at first, but after wiping up the water, sweeping the glitter, and wiping the floor again (with Eleanor's help) it did look clean when we left. Ugh.

Matt, Zoe, Emily, and Zach arrived at my parents' house around 12:30 and we had barbequed hotdogs and cheeseburgers, potato salad, and chips. Yummy! Then I brought Matt and Kate home (we had planned for Kate to stay with my parents, but Kate wanted to go home with Matt) and Noah and I took Zoe and Emily to Claire's to spend their gift cards. They had a 10 for $10 sale, which included 3 racks, so Emily took advantage of the sale. She got quite a few earrings and other jewelry and she bought a wallet. Zoe bought a wallet and nail polish. They were both very happy with what they bought...after looking through the store thoroughly.

We all met at home for FHE.

Yesterday felt like Monday. I did laundry and more laundry and more laundry. Do you realize that you are wearing laundry? It's silly to think laundry will ever be caught up.

Zoe had her last softball game last night. I missed it because I was at Emily's practice with the kids, but Matt watched Zoe. He said she played the entire game and she played shortstop. I wish I could have seen her. I watched the kids play and I took a few pictures before my camera battery died.

The kids played on the playground behind the Orland school for awhile and then we played in the prekindergarten area with sandboxes, a playhouse, picnic tables, a swingset, and other outside toys. There were quite a few kids playing in the area and my kids had fun making new friends and playing with the toys.
Emily is getting better with each practice and more comfortable playing.

I put more laundry away this morning and cleaned the bathroom. My mom called me to let me know she is home today, so after Zoe, Emily, and Eleanor got home from their half day of school and after homework and chores were done, we came over to my parents' house. We are having fun inside on this cloudy, rainy afternoon.
The kids found a Halloween craft kit, so Emily, Eleanor, and Zach made a figure. Zach made a cat, which he is very proud of! He did a great job for a 4 year old working with the glue.

I also gave Noah his first haircut. I just shaved above his ears where his hair was looking like Bozo the clown.

Sunday, May 24, 2009

I hate coming up with titles!

Happy Birthday, Janet! I hope you had a wonderful day.

I need to get caught up here, so here is an overview of our week.

Monday: Eleanor had her last cheering class. When Zoe found out it was the last time she had to get in the car after riding the bus home to go pick up Eleanor from cheering, she was VERY happy! I'm glad cheering is over, too.

Remember awhile ago when Noah started sleeping in a "bed" beside our bed? Well, that didn't last and Matt was getting tired of Noah kicking him and sleeping on his head, so Noah had his first night in the crib. He slept from 10:30ish to 6:30ish in the morning, which was so nice! I still need to get him to fall asleep on his own, but having him sleep in the crib is progress. Kate was more than willing to sleep on the floor with the big kids. She said Noah could sleep in her crib.

Tuesday: I took Zach, Kate, and Noah to the park, we ran some errands with a stop at the credit union and the grocery store, and then we stopped here at my parents' house, so I could update my blog. Zach and Kate sat on the swing on the porch and watched "Dragon Tales" and ate their lollipops from the credit union. Noah played the game of climbing up the stairs after I put him on the porch to play. He would play for a few minutes, crawl to the stairs and climb them, wait for me to get him, then he would stand up and I would pick him up and then we started all over again as I put him on the porch. He had lots of fun!

Zoe, Emily, and Eleanor went in 3 different directions Tuesday night, so we enlisted my mom's help. My mom took Zoe to her softball practice. Noah and I took Eleanor to her portfolio night at school where she showed me some of the work she has done this year. Matt took Emily, Zach, and Kate to most of Emily's baseball practice and then they headed to Emily's school for portfolio night. We got done at Eleanor's school earlier than I expected, so we waited for Matt in the parking lot. We decided that Eleanor, Noah, and I would go in with Emily to see some of the work she has done this year and Matt would take Zach and Kate home. We were all reunited a little after 7pm. It was a crazy evening!

I put Noah in his crib around midnight, he woke up a few hours later, and then he was up around 5:45am. We figured the first night was beginner's luck and we were right.

Wednesday: Zach finally got his picture taken. :-) He did very well. During this session, the photographer took about 6 pictures and then she let me choose which picture I wanted for the package. Nice! I really like the picture that we're getting. Zach was confused when the lady handed me a piece of paper instead of his pictures, so I explained to him that we had to wait until his pictures were ordered and printed before we could get them. He's anxious to bring his pictures home! The company has changed its rules about when another appointment can be made, so now we have to wait until the next advertised package is available, which is June 20th to make another appointment. I used to wait about 3 weeks in between pictures, but now it looks like I'll have to wait 4 weeks or so. It will be September by the time all of the kids' pictures are taken, but it's the inexpensive way to go.

We went to the park before going home. The kids fell asleep on the way home, so I worked outside while they slept. There were a lot of dead leaves near the steps that I raked up and I cleaned off our porch.

Zoe had a softball game in the evening. The kids stayed with my mom, so that was nice. I didn't get to see Zoe play because by the time she was put into the game, I was in the car feeding Noah and I couldn't see the field from the car. I don't think she got up to bat, but she played in the outfield. Her team played Emery's and they always lose to Emery's. There are only 3 teams in the league, so Zoe's team loses every other game. They have fun, though.

Thursday: A hot, hot day! We don't have our air conditioner in yet, so the house was like a sauna in the afternoon. I pushed the kids on the swing for awhile, but I didn't have much energy. Zach was ready to go inside after he got stung. He was swinging and then he started to cry and he kept saying "bug!, bug!". I didn't see anything and I had no idea what he was freaking out about. When I stopped him, he showed me his leg as he cried and I could see that something had stung him. I'm assuming it was a yellow jacket since I have seen a lot of them around lately, but I didn't see anything flying around as I was pushing him on the swing. Zach put some ice on his leg and settled in to watch "Scooby Doo". The kids keep bringing home "Scooby Doo" movies from my parents' house, so we have quite a few of them right now. Eleanor used to be scared of "Scooby Doo" and she still is a bit, but now all of my kids like to watch those movies.

Matt was home in the evening, so he watched the kids while I took Emily to her baseball practice. My mom came to the practice, so we talked and played with Noah while we watched Emily. My mom took Emily home and she took Noah with her so I could stop and put gas in the Yukon and pick up some sandwiches. We met back at my parents' house to eat our sandwiches and watch "Glenn Beck". Then we played a game of Phase 10. Noah slept the entire time. :-)

I'm still good at putting Noah in his crib before I go to bed, but I'm getting lazy in the middle of the night after I feed him, so he ends up in our bed.

Friday: It was another hot day, but not as bad as Thursday. I took Zach, Kate, and Noah to the Children's Museum. Zach was very excited when I told him where we were going. We parked in the parking garage and then walked about half a block to the museum. Zach and Kate were so cute as they walked hand in hand. Zach was carrying his backpack. Noah was content most of the day to sit in the stroller. I thought Zach and Kate would like the "meet the animals" activity, which is one of the reasons we went to the museum that day, but Zach freaked out. I'm still not sure if he was mad because he wanted to go play with the boats instead or if he was scared of the little turtle and tortoise, but he kept screeching in short bursts. We stayed long enough to learn a few facts and to touch the turtle and tortoise (Zach did not touch them) and then we went back to playing. Zach and Kate played with the boats for a long time. Kate cried when it was time to leave "her" pink boat so we could go eat lunch in the snack room. I let Noah roam free for a bit near the boat and Brazil area. The drums were a big hit with Noah and with Kate, too. We ended our day in the Goodnight Moon room. I read part of the book to Zach and he had fun finding things in the room that are in the book. Kate was cute as she fed "her" teddy bear some mush. Overall, it was quite a delightful day.

Matt and I ordered chinese food and then we went to my parents' house with Noah to eat. We ate way too much! Matt had had a tough day at work and the chinese food didn't sit well with him, my stomach hurt from eating too much, the kids were being wild at home, so we decided to head home after we ate. The kids were not happy to see us home early. We let them finish watching "Parent Trap" and my mom and I played Phase 10. It was a bit chaotic, but we made it through the game and I actually won!

Saturday: I spent most of the day with Eleanor and Noah. Eleanor had T-ball in the morning. My parents stopped by for a few minutes to watch her. I let Noah play in the grass, which he loved! T-ball went a bit over, so a lot of the kids (mostly girls) were losing interest as they waited in the infield for the ball to be hit. Eleanor had her glove (or as Kate says "glub") on the ground and she was twirling. The sight of another girl laying in the dirt cracked me up. Eleanor was happy when it was over because it was time to go shopping! She had a Claire's gift card from Christmas to spend and she had some birthday money to spend. We stopped at Old Navy first to hit the big flip flop sale. Thanks PJ for putting the sale on Facebook because Matt saw it and then told me about it when I mentioned that I wanted to buy Kate a pair of flip flops. You are awesome! I bought Kate and Matt a pair of flip flops and Eleanor bought herself a more expensive pair for $3.50. I fed Noah and then we went to Claire's. Eleanor fell in love with the mall! She found a purse in Claire's that came with 3 little toy dogs. The purse opens up and becomes a little house or something for the dogs. Eleanor used her gift card and some of her cash to buy it. She had a dollar and some change left, so we headed over to Target to hit the dollar spot. She found some hair glitter to buy and I bought her a pair of church shoes. We went to McDonalds for lunch and then we went over to Goodwill. I got rid of some bags that were in the back of the Yukon and I looked at clothes inside. I'd like some "new" church outfits, but I didn't see anything that I couldn't live without, so we looked at the kids' clothes. Zoe and Emily could use some "new" shorts, but I ended up buying Eleanor a couple pairs of jean shorts and I bought Emily a pair of jean capri pants, but she didn't like them and they fit Zoe, so now they are Zoe's. I fed Noah again and then our last stop was at the grocery store and then we went home. It was around 4:30pm when we finally got home. Matt was beginning to wonder what had happened to us. I don't go shopping with the kids very often, which is why Eleanor was finally spending a gift card from Christmas, because it does become an all-day event, and usually we don't have money to spend. I wish we had spent our money more wisely this weekend, but what is done is done. I will do better the next time we have money.

Matt and my mom left our house this morning at 6:30 to travel to Dover for their unit conference. The kids and I went to Ellsworth. My lesson went well and Zach gave his first talk in Primary today. He wasn't nervous at all and he did a great job. :-)

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

The rest of our weekend

So here are the face painting pictures from Saturday. Emily received face paints for her birthday and she has been very anxious to use them. Saturday was the day!
A flower...

A truck...

A butterfly...


More hearts...

Another butterfly...

I didn't specify to just paint on the cheeks, so we were told about the cat...

At this point, I was really hoping that the paint would wash off easily at bathtime since the next day was church!

Another butterfly...

A flower pot with flowers...

A cracker...

A flower or sun?...

Zoe and Emily were the artists. I didn't give Kate permission to get into the paints after the girls were done...

The kids had fun playing at the park after we left my parents' house and then we went home for about an hour so I could get ready for the adult session of Stake Conference. We went to the Bangor Stake Center where we met Lucy's Dad and said goodbye to Lucy, Matt took the kids home (he got a ride to his stake meetings with my mom who also had meetings), and I stayed at the stake center with Noah. I fed Noah and claimed my seat by the door where my parents and Patti joined me. I didn't last long in the chapel with Noah, though. He wanted to crawl around and have fun, so I brought him into the Primary room and listened to the talks. Everyone who spoke gave a great talk about being obedient. It was a very uplifting meeting. It was a bit lonely in the Primary room with Noah, but I was able to enjoy the talks more where Noah could roam and be loud and I didn't have to worry about him being disruptive. My mom gave me a ride home and it was nice to talk with her without all the kids around.

I haven't mentioned yet that my hummingbirds arrived on Mother's Day. I could sit and watch the hummingbirds all day long. Also, Noah took his first step on Eleanor's birthday! I saw him take a step, but wondered if I had just imagined it, but I knew he had when he did it again later on. He has taken a step here and there the past few days. Way to go, Noah!

Stake Conference on Sunday was a regional broadcast, so we all traveled to Machias with Matt where he had to conduct the meeting. We were on the road at 7:30am, church started at 10am. There were 23 people in attendance. Zoe conducted the opening and closing songs and she did a great job! I was impressed that she said she would do it. 2 hours is a long time for anyone to sit still, so the children did very well considering. Kate ended up in the quiet room a few times, Noah nursed and fell asleep, and Eleanor fell asleep when she got really bored. Zoe's favorite story was about a little boy who said a prayer in Primary. He was thanful for the letter A, then thankful for the letter B, then thankful for the letter C, and so on until he got to the letter Z. The Primary teacher was tempted to stop the boy, but didn't. Then the boy was thankful for the number 1, the number 2, (the teacher wondered how high the boy could count!) and so on until the number 20. Then the boy ended his prayer by saying Thank you for my Primary teacher who is the only one who has ever let me finish my prayer. Cute. That prayer would never make it to the end at our house either! After conference, we were planning on having peanut butter crackers and bananas for a snack before leaving, but the members in Machias invited us to eat sandwiches, chips, salads, and desserts that they had brought for a potluck to enjoy after conference. We ate with them and it was so yummy! Our kids were adored and talked about a lot because Machias doesn't have any children that attend on a regular basis. As we left, I noticed the adults sitting around talking with no children around and it was quite inviting. I know, it would get old after awhile not having any little ones to tend to, but for one meal it would be so nice!

We drove to my parents' house to enjoy another yummy meal. We were well fed on Sunday! Then we went home to have family council, the kids ate once again before getting ready for bed, and then it was time to crash.

Saturday, May 16, 2009

Eleanor is 6!

Eleanor has been so excited for her birthday all week. I'm sure it was a very long week for her, but Friday FINALLY came. Before she went to school, she opened a gift from Jerry and Judy Booth.

Zoe did Eleanor's hair, which at first Eleanor wasn't too crazy about, but she did leave her elastic in all day at school. It was perfect that Eleanor's birthday landed on a Friday because Friday is a fun day in Kindergarten. All of the specials are on Friday, so the kids have Art, Gym, Library, and Music class and then they do a special activity at the end of the day, which is different each week. I picked Zoe and Emily up from school and then I picked Eleanor up and she was in a great mood and ready to go pick up her friend Lucy for a sleepover.

Eleanor has been determined to have a big birthday party with lots of friends, but I was thinking smaller, so when I came up with the idea to invite Lucy over for a sleepover, I thought it was brilliant because Eleanor would get to share her birthday with a friend, but I wouldn't have to put together a friend party. I was so happy when Eleanor thought it was the best idea ever, too. So we drove to Bar Harbor, all of the kids enjoying their Nintendos, picked up Lucy, and then drove home. Matt was in the process of making pizza when we got home, so the kids played and we waited for the pizza to cook and for my mom to arrive. Eleanor wanted to open her presents before dinner, but we made her wait until after dinner.

Eleanor was very pleased with the presents she got.

Eleanor's last present turned out to be a box filled of little presents to unwrap from Grammie & Grampie. Fun!

Time for cake!

Zoe and Emily left after the party with my mom to spend the night here at my parents'. Eleanor and Lucy played for a while, got ready for bed, and then we set up their "beds" in the living room with Zach. Eleanor and Lucy were ready to party all night. I'm not sure what time they fell asleep, but Noah finally settled down around 11pm and the girls were still going strong then. When we got up in the morning, there was evidence that Eleanor and Lucy had some cake at some point in the middle of the night and there was also a container on the table full of crumbs from either cereal or crackers I guess. They had fun watching movies and playing with Eleanor's new and old toys.

Eleanor had T-Ball this morning. They practiced fielding ground balls and then throwing to first base, and then they split into two groups to use both fields to practice hitting and running around the bases.

Eleanor is in the pink shirt. Here is a picture of her fielding the ball after it was hit. She loves the pitcher's spot.

Eleanor is not afraid of the action.

We went home after practice and the kids have been playing. Now we are getting to ready to leave my parents' home where there has been face painting (I'll have to post pictures later), eating, and playing. Now we are heading to the park.

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Are we having fun yet?

Mother's Day didn't go as planned, but it was still a good day. My mom ended up sick on Mother's day :-( so we didn't get to her house after church for dinner. I did stop by on our way home to give her a Mother's Day DVD that was given out at church after we all watched it during the last 15 minutes of church, and to pick up some things that I had left behind on Saturday. Then our family went home and Matt made pancakes. We also had leftover pizza. After we ate, Emily put away dishes and Zoe washed the dishes as a Mother's Day present...or maybe it was because they were fighting with each other all the way to church and home again, yeah that was it. On the way to church, Matt asked me to open the glove box and then he asked me if there was a pink envelope in there. There was and it turned out to be my Mother's Day card. Very sweet. I received several cards and pictures from the kids, a couple of necklaces, and a poster. It's always fun to see what they have created.
Zoe made the poster above, Emily made the picture on the left below, Eleanor made the picture on the right, Zach made the blue card with the flower, and Zoe and Emily made the necklaces during their Activity Days activity.

Emily gave me a paper flower with her picture on it and a nice note from her, but I forgot to take a picture of it. I'll try to remember to include it in my next post. I was surprised that Eleanor didn't make anything at school for Mother's Day. She didn't bring anything home anyway.

I believe our kids have 5 weeks of school left. It's weird that Zoe will be moving on to the middle school next year. Is she really going to be in the 5th grade already? We have 4 different schools here. Kindergarteners have their own building, which I think is nice. I like the fact that my Kindergartners don't have to worry about bigger kids. The Miles Lane School, which Zoe and Emily are in now, goes from 1st grade to 4th grade. The Middle School goes from 5th grade to 8th grade. The 5th and 6th graders are on the top floor and the 7th and 8th graders are on the bottom floor. Then the High School goes from 9th to 12th grade. Step-Up day is June 10th, I think, so Eleanor will meet her new teacher at Miles Lane, Emily will meet her new teacher, and Zoe will meet her new teacher at the Middle School. Every year is different, but next year will really be different having Zoe in a school that I've never dealt with before. Zoe said she is going to miss the beach party lunch at Miles Lane. It's coming up on the 29th and her class is making surf boards to help decorate the cafeteria. I asked her what else she is going to miss about Miles Lane, but she got distracted by Emily when she was thinking, so I'll have to ask her again. She has enjoyed having Mrs. LaLonde the past 2 years, but I know she is looking forward to having a new teacher.

Monday was spent doing some laundry and puttering around the house. Zach wanted to make some cookies, so we settled on brownies. I checked the recipe and realized that we didn't have any vanilla, so we headed to the grocery store. I was planning on stopping at the store later on anyway, so it was nice to go early and get it done. We made the brownies, but Zach wasn't too impressed that the mixer was taking over his job of mixing. Zoe and Emily came home on the bus after school and then we went to get Eleanor from cheerleading. We had FHE and discovered uncooked brownies when we had the treat. I have a brownie recipe that calls for unsweetened chocolate, but I usually use cocoa and oil instead of the unsweetened chocolate. The recipe says to cook the brownies for 35 minutes, no longer, so that is what I have always done and they come out perfectly. Well, the last 2 times I have made the brownies, I have used semi-sweet chocolate (this past Monday being one of those times) and the brownies have not cooked through. I cook them the same amount of time as always. I'm wondering if using semi-sweet chocolate instead of unsweetened chocolate is the reason they are not cooking like they should. Isn't the semi-sweet and unsweetened just a matter of taste? I think I'm going to stick with my cocoa and oil in the future.

I did more laundry yesterday and I pushed Zach, Kate, and Noah on the swing in the afternoon. Zach and Kate are pretty good about wearing bug nets outside. We need to get some more bug nets because we don't have enough for everyone. It's that time of year when the black flies just swarm around us when we're outside. They're not as bad in the afternoon when it is sunny, but they are still around.
I fed the kids dinner around 4pm and then Matt left with Emily and Kate to bring Emily to her first Farm League practice and then I left with everyone else to go to Zoe's softball game. I parked where I could watch the game in the car and Noah could stay asleep, but when Eleanor realized that I had no intention of getting out of the car, she threw a fit. She wanted to go outside to play and watch the game. She woke Noah up and finally I told her that if she could be quiet for 5 minutes I would think about getting out of the car. 2 hours of listening to Eleanor cry and whine did not sound fun, but dealing with the black flies didn't sound fun, either. Eleanor finally settled down and we got out of the car. Not long after we got out to watch the game, my mom showed up. We talked and watched the game for a bit. My mom is less tolerant of the black flies than I am, so I told her that if she could convince Eleanor to get back in the car than we could watch the game from there. Two bags of cheetos for Eleanor and Zach was the bribe they needed to get in the car. My mom and I shared a nacho. We didn't have to deal with the black flies anymore, but we had messy fingers and wiggly children to deal with. When the cheetos were gone and Eleanor and Zach were cleaned up, they were anxious to get out of the car again. I let them play around the car in the grass, but they soon tested the limits and would walk near the road of the parking lot, touch the road with their foot, and then run back on the grass. They got back in the car. Zoe didn't play for most of the game. She finally played in right field and got up to bat once. Zoe and I were both proud when she hit a foul ball. She swung and made contact with the ball, yay! Then she walked after the next pitch. The game ended soon after. YAY! It was not a pleasant game for me. Sometime during the game when we were in the car, my car alarm went off. It was just one more thing to stress about! Zoe's team won, so they did their victory lap and then we went home. Zach couldn't find his nintendo when we got home, so he whined about that until Matt found it. The kids were hungry, so they ate pancakes as I rushed them and the older kids had their baths. Matt worked on unplugging the bathroom sink since Eleanor and Zach have discovered the fun of putting toilet paper down the sink. We read scriptures and said our prayers and it was finally time to send the kids to bed and to relax. Well, I relaxed (which means I nursed Noah and read) while Matt washed the dishes, and then he read.

Emily enjoyed her practice. Her friend, Tessa was with her, which is good because there are a lot more boys playing Farm League than girls. I'll get to watch her tomorrow night if it doesn't get rained out.

Tonight was supposed to be a free night while Matt works late, but Zoe found out last night that she has softball practice this evening at 5:30. The Miles Lane school is right near the field we'll be at this evening, so the kids can play on the playground while Zoe practices.

I took Zach, Kate, and Noah to storytime this morning. I was surprised that we were the only ones there since it is a beautiful day, but we were. Another girl came in with us, too. When we are the only ones at storytime, Zach and Kate like to fight over the rocking chair and bounce from chair to chair to chair. It's hard to get them to sit on the floor and listen to the books. We started off good as I insisted on us all sitting on the floor, but they ended up on the chairs after a few stories. Storytime ended when they lost interest in the books. Noah showed off his ability to stand up from a crawling or sitting position now. He is getting very good at it. Now we are taking his hands and walking with him to get him used to walking. I'd really like him to be walking before summer. He followed me up the stairs a little while ago here at my parents' house, so he can officially climb the stairs!