Tuesday, April 30, 2013

field trip

Ethan and I went on a field trip to Sotterly to go canoeing today.  It was a lot of fun but it was raining.  We were very wet.  It was a kind of chilly and I got a tick on my back where I could not reach it, one of the star bellied sneeches kind :( The children didn't want to pull it out, Hannah said it made her want to throw up and E asked if I'd pay him a dollar.  What is wrong with them??  Finally E did and it hurt.


see Monte pythons rabbit guarding the village?
 Yesterday Grace woke up with pink eye.  Can I get a small groan from the audience?  Thanks.
So I stayed home with her and we hung out all day until I could get her in to the doctor for some drops since we were out. (for the record all the sweet snuggling I did yesterday, despite the precautionary washing of all the pillowcases, resulted in me getting to share the drops today)

It was rainy.  We walked the dogs, went to CVS, watched 7 Brides for 7 Brothers, did some laundry.  It was a good day.
 For FHE after our opening exercises we adjourned to the kitchen table where I had supplies (play dough, tooth picks, straws, scissors and wax paper).  We each built a fortress to guard our imaginary villages.  It was lots of fun, everyone had different ideas about what would be good.
the boys pondering their designs
After we built and shared our defense strategies we went back to the living room and reviewed some of the Alma chapters were Moroni has the people build defenses around the various cities in the land, then we talked about Elder Hales talk from the last Priesthood session and finally discussed ways that we could fortify and protect ourselves and our family from the evils that would seek to destroy.  I think it was a pretty good lesson.
.Most importantly Hannah made cookies and Grace and I remembered to buy ice cream when we were at CVS so we had ice cream sandwiches for FHE treat.

Sunday, April 28, 2013

welcome welcome Sabbath morning

Yesterday Hannah I went shopping after Ethan's soccer game.  They won the game, 3-1.  It was tough.  Ethan played keeper the second half and I have to say he is a good goalie.  He got kicked in the mouth and played on.  After the game he went to Chebi's house to play and Grace went to Samantha's and R went fishing so Han and I got to go by ourselves.  We have been looking for 2 dresses.  One for graduation and one for the 8th grade dance.  We found one that she wants for the dance on line but it's not available to purchase until May so that left us with the graduation one.  We checked a few stores, as always it's very hard to find something modest and not grandmotherly or teachery.  We found one at JCP finally! Yay!! So thrilled.  Then we went to BJs and bought groceries.

Last night R and I went on a date.  We ate at Red Robin.  Tasty.  Then had some errands to run.  We went to Dicks for fishing stuff and ended up finding a 15 degree bag for Ethan, since he's turning 11 soon we need to get some camping gear and it was on sale so yay again.  We went to Ross and bought some shorts for R since his all "shrunk" and we went to Lowes for petunias and carpet cleaning fluid.  Whoo Hoo! We know how to live it up :)

Today the girls looked so cute getting out the door for church that I had them stand together for a quick pic. The sun was in their eyes.

Tonight I have meetings, meetings and more meetings.  We have lots of good plans for the summer and need to get it all done.  I'm glad to go:)

Saturday, April 27, 2013


 last night while I was chaperoneing the dance, a very fun "cherry blossom" themed event, R took the littles fishing and THEY CAUGHT STUFF!!!!!

Papa Bear with his itty bitty catch!
 Little Bear with his medium sized catch!!
and pink fuzzy Sister Bear with her great big catfish!!!!!

also note the clothing, Papa Bear wore layers...and then stripped down to shirt sleeves as each little cub got cold.
Future solution: have the cubs bring sweatshirts

Friday, April 26, 2013

day off

There is a shade of green found here in MD that is hard to describe.  I see it sometimes when I am driving down the tree lined roads and the sun filters through some spots and lights the leaves up with a sparkle.  It really is lovely.  Bright and happy.  It is my favorite color that shade, nameless and hard to describe, but when you see it it speaks to your senses and says the earth is alive, and there is beauty all around.  After a long and cold winter it is finally almost warm and today the sparkle of green was every where!

We've been keeping busy.  I like my little kindergarten class.  I love the cute hugs and the stories they tell, their sometimes shy smiles and their quiet faces when listening to a story.  It's been a cheerful few weeks for me there.  

Wednesday night Grace made a blanket in activity days.  She was very happy.  Two weeks ago she helped Stevie work on hers and this week Stevie helped her.  All the girls made a blanket and they were pleased with their efforts. 

Thursday was busy.  After school Grace stayed for the Relay for Life movie viewing.  Ethan had a soccer game which he almost missed except that Dari drove him down, so sweetly and not at all on her way to anywhere.  I was very grateful.  I need to make her cookies or something.  Then lost 3-5.  Losing is always a bitter pill to swallow.  After the game E and R went out with the missionaries.  Lu and I went out to dinner then went to pick up Hannah at Alyssa's and ended up staying two hours chatting and eating Norwegian waffles, so yummy.  We really had a nice time and got home too late.  Luckily today there is no school.

Rob is home from work today.  I was surprised.  He technically gets every other Friday off but actually only takes 3-4 off a year, so seldom that I do not even think to ask if it's an off Friday or not.  This morning I worked in the house, he worked outside.  The kids helped us both, mostly him but that was great I was happy to have them outside pulling weeds and helping.  I also talked on the phone with my mom and my MIL.  It's funny but somehow when I work during the day I don't get to talk to people very often, nights and weekends aren't the same.  R and I did some calendaring which was needed but we had to both be here, during the day, to do it.  Anyway it was nice to catch up.

For lunch today I went out to celebrate Lisa, Amy and my birthdays.  We went to Thompsons and ate tasty seafood and sat and talked for 2 hours.  It was great.  

Now R and the kids are off fishing, hope they have some luck. Soon I will be leaving to chaperone a dance.

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

science for FHE

 last night for FHE we finished up Grace's home scientist badge requirements.  She had to do 5 experiments and read about the science behind them.

She chose to make dinosaur snot (oobleck), to demonstrate density by floating objects in salt water or not, make something explode (mentos and diet coke), make pepper dance and water bend, and make rock candy.

Some worked better than others, all were pretty fun and everyone was engaged in the fun.

Monday, April 22, 2013

weekend recap

Our weekend was pretty good, as weekends tend to be.

On Friday night we went out for cow with Pete and Katherine.  Had a good time visiting.  I actually ate the shrimp skewers which were very tasty.  It was a stormy night so after dinner we rushed home to our offspring and were in bed early.  Hannah was supposed to have a camp out but it had to be moved due to the weather.

Saturday Rob and Pete spent all day doing fishing/boat stuff.  The kids and I cleaned the house and then headed to Waldorf to the mall.  We had a pretty fun time.  Food court dinner is always a fav.  I wanted to go to Crazy 8s because our little Lu has been sporting the scrappy look a little too long and she is so picky about her clothes.  She doesn't do "itchy".  We found some cute, soft outfits there and bought a couple.  She is ready for the warm weather now....if it ever comes.  Today's high is a predicted 56, brrr!  Han also bought a couple of things.  E doesn't care about clothes but he was good shopping company.

Yesterday I spoke in the LP ward.  First we went to our ward, sacrament meeting was wonderful.  That Tracey Kirkham is an awesome speaker.  The topic was the Atonement and of course how can you go wrong.  I was happy I would get to hear his talk twice since I was his speaking companion for the second block. 
Laura invited us for dinner and we had a fun time there.  The evening ended early because the kids had BYD.  When we got home we worked on Lu's home scientist stuff for her brownie badge and went to bed.

BTW, the picture, nothing to do with the post, just that I love those boys, and wish I was somewhere warm :)

Friday, April 19, 2013

you've had a birthday shout hurray!

adorable adorable Penny Jane!!!!
 Yesterday was my birthday.  I am 45.  I think that's pretty much the middle of life exactly.  I'd like to live to 90 give or take a decade so the first half is over.  Crazy.  It's been good :)  I had a good day.  It's been a good life.

How did I celebrate?  well I went to work.  I have a few more weeks of Kindergarten to enjoy and a long list of things I want to do with the money I make so it seemed the best choice:)  I had a really fun time seeing messages pop up on facebook with well wishes from friends and family.  It's kind of silly but I really enjoyed that.  Knowing so many people thought well of me and cared to say Happy Birthday.
Tatum girl the mermaid lover
 After work I enjoyed some more birthday love in the form of phone calls and lots of pics on Dani's blog just for me of my little princess grandgirls!!!  Yea!! loved it.
seriously couldn't you just eat her up?!!

Tate and the sea creature crew
 When I got home I was greeted by a beautiful bouquet of flowers!  This made my day, so cheerful and sweet and my favorite colors.  Then Dani told me that Greg sent them and that touched me so much.  He is a great SIL and I am grateful for our good relationship.  Thanks birthday twin Greg!
birthday flowers from Greg :)
 The boys had soccer so we had a girls night celebration.  We went to JoAnns and Marshalls.  I got some cute new shoes and we got Lu an outfit and some fabric for a blanket she's working on in activity days.  Hannah got a shower cap :) and some other things she needed.  We had a good time together!  We also ate at Chicken something, that I have been wanting to try.  It was fine but not a place I need to rush back to.   The company was good though!
birthday fun with my little girls
sweet TX friends
When I came home Pete and Katherine were here with a little gift and to visit. They traversed the dangerous debris field to join us in our messy living room for a fun visit.  I feel very blessed to have many great friends in many parts of the world.  Really blessed.  I look forward to the day when we are not separated by miles and can enjoy each other in person. 

It's also Marcia's birthday! Happy birthday gorgeous, brilliant, dazzling you!  Tori, Kriste, Ruth and Marcia went out to celebrate and sent me this "wish you were here".  I wish it too dear ones!

Not to forget I got my long wished for dyson.  I am very excited.  UB and Nana and Abba sent it to me.  Love love my family! all of them! Family really is God's biggest blessing to us. I  have been especially blessed.

It was a happy day, full of good cheer, new shoes, happy thoughts and my grateful heart. 

Thursday, April 18, 2013

it pollened

It's that wonderful time of year when we get a yellow coating on everything...and the sneezing that comes with it.  MD is the first place I have lived where we can see the pollen in a thick layer. The first time I saw it I didn't know what it was.  Now I do...aahh chooo!!

Tuesday night Lu had Brownies.  The girls each chose one individual badge to work on, I didn't know what she chose until that night when we picked up our packet.  All the other girls chose dancer, or computer expert.  Grace chose home scientist.  We will be working on lots of experiments in the next few weeks.  She is very excited.  Our Grace is a very smart girl.

After Brownies Rob and I went to Salsas.  It's our favorite late night, quick date.  Diet coke, chips and salsa~ a good start to any dinner :)

Last  night R took the kids to church and I went to have a "play date" with Katherine.  I brought cake and we sat in her living room, which is always clean and peaceful and smells good, and just chatted.  Eventually her visiting teachers joined us, which was also fun.  I need to do that more.  Making time for my girl friends is challenging when I work during the day and the familia keeps me busy all the rest of the time.  But it's such a joy and blessing to have those warm and supportive friendships.  Note to self: make that more of a priority.

Monday, April 15, 2013

Fishing for FHE

 Tonight R wanted to go fishing for FHE.  I thought that was a good idea, it's nice to get out in nature and to spend time together.  The kids were not as enthusiastic but once we got there they all had a good time.  Hannah and Ethan took off their shoes and went wading.
 R and Lu spent most of the time trying to catch fish, Ethan occasionally joined them.  Z ran around and Han and I took her walking.
 We didn't catch anything but the evening was very lovely and we enjoyed ourselves.
We came home and ate roast and potatoes that I had put in the crock pot this morning, and then I put Lu to bed while Han and Ethan worked on homework.  R stayed to fish some more.  He has long wanted to take the family out on the lake but I wonder if the reality was a little splashier ,more  noisy, and sillier than he had imagined :)

Sunday, April 14, 2013

a whirlwind

Grace, Emma, Julie, Katie, Julia, Delaney, Kylie and Madison
 Saturday Grace and I went to Brownie encampment.  It was lots of fun.  They had a princess theme and lots of great stations and activities for the girls.  I was really impressed with how organized it was, what a great job the older girls did executing the activities for the little ones, and how conflict free and fun for all it was.  Among other things they went on a scavenger hike, did some team building activities, played games, made crafts, learned about fire safety and built a fire, did skits and exchanged the cutest swaps.
Grace and I didn't stay the night since we have many Sabbath commitments, including the one that says "honor the Sabbath day and keep it holy", so we left after dinner.  She was a little disappointed but we had such a fun time that she quickly got over it.
Grace and Madison during team building

Hannah, Grace, Raymart and scuttle!
 We got home from encampment with plenty still to do.  Hannah had her closing night of her play, actually they had two shows that day.  After the play there was an after party for the cast and crew at the clubhouse.  The play was a really good experience, they worked hard and did a wonderful job!
dancing at the after party!
 Saturday morning Hannah also attended the stake volleyball tournament!  Ethan and R went to Pete's to help him install a fish finder on his boat and to ready the boat for the season, then they went to a soccer game (we won) then they had outside chores to do.
It was a packed day for every one!  A late night and an early morning today.  But we got it all done and everyone was happy. 

This morning I got to go up to the White Plains ward to participate in the world wide leadership training.  It was really good, I love the new training videos and we had a great discussion.  I stayed for their meetings and enjoyed very much meeting with the young women and their leaders.  Awesome women!! It is a joy to serve them and to serve the Lord....even when it means getting up at 5am.

This afternoon I crashed! Took a nice long nap and it was wonderful! Now I am ready for one more meeting tonight and a new week :)

Friday, April 12, 2013

talent show

This week I have been working in Kindergarten, I will be there the rest of the year.  It's pretty fun.  They are little and cute and the day goes fast.  After school goes too fast too.  Especially this week. 
Tonight Grace had her talent show.  It was really nice.  They divided it into two shows, each one lasting about an hour.  Perfect.  Lu played two pieces on the piano and two on the recorder.  She was very cute.
After we went to the Middle School to watch the Little Mermaid again.  It was cute, again.  Tomorrow is the last night.
After the nights performances we went to Salsas for a late dinner.  We like to go there and always see lots of friends and neighbors. 
Grace wanted me to take this photo and to post it.  When we went to the Smithsonian we saw a group of cute sister missionaries on their P Day.  We went to chat with them and then Lu whispered to me that she wanted a picture with them because she is going to be a missionary some day.  So, here they are.  Cute girls all :)

Thursday, April 11, 2013

The Little Mermaid

Tonight was the opening night of "The Little Mermaid" debuting Hannah as chef #3! It was super cute.  Grace and I went and I was very impressed with the sets, the costumes and the very talented kids.  We had a good time.  I sat next to the mother of frog 2 and we laughed at the cuteness :)

Ethan and Dad were at soccer practice.  I think they will catch a showing tomorrow night.  We have had a crazy busy week, more busy then in typical for us. I am looking forward to next week and a lull in the schedule.  Poor Z has spent a lot of time in her crate this week because we haven't been home.

Saturday, April 6, 2013

from the comfort of our own home

 we enjoyed watching conference today!
 technology is both a blessing and a curse.  Sometimes it's a little too comfy at home!

random catch up

This weekend Rob and Pete are off fishing again.  I like this picture of him, it's very pretty there and when I talk to him on the phone I can hear the seagulls in the background.  So far he hasn't caught anything.  Thank goodness he feeds our family with his engineering skills and not his mad fishing skilz.  From all reports they are having a good time :)

In the meantime things at home are fine:)  My long term job for spec ed is over.  I enjoyed it.  This week I only worked one day but starting on Monday I am doing another long term, this time in K.  So while I was off what did I do?  I drove to Waldorf one day to pick up a washer part.  Our washer is very unreliable but handy dandy hubby keeps it limping along.  I called Laura and she and KT rode up with me and then we went to CafĂ© Rio!! Yumm-o!

Hannah had play practice every day after school.  She also has practice all day today.
Grace had talent show try outs.  She is going to be in a the talent show next week. 
My good friend Marcia is "in town" well, in Alexandria which is close enough.  She is a brand new grandma for the first time!  Shout out to Richie and Britni!! We met up for lunch and it was so much fun.  We talked and laughed and laughed and laughed.  I miss that girl!!Also our lunch was super delicious and I will definitely be heading back to the Thai Palace.
This morning we went to a soccer game.  We won! 6-2.  Ethan played keeper the first half, did a good job.  The second half he was a forward and he scored a goal!  It was a good game.  Chilly outside but whatevah.  After Lu and E both got invited to go play at Joe's house along with the Davis kids.  It's very quiet at home right now.  I am going to watch conference in a second, doing some laundry.  Strange Saturday to be home alone.
Last night Laura invited us over to watch Les Miserables.  She had a house full.  I was excited to go and see it.  The kids all ran around upstairs and outside playing while we hit the basement theater.  She also made snacks which were tasty and it was fun to visit with everyone.  I really really wanted to love the movie.  I actually have never seen it or read the book and I knew I needed to, if only from a cultural literacy perspective.  But I didn't love it.  I liked the story in that I loved Jean ValJean.  He was such a good man and did such good.  I love that.  Also Wolverine...easy on the eyes.  Some of the music was very stirring and at the end of the day I liked the story.  The actual watching of the movie was kind of long and the singing kind of not great, and some of the horrors, just so sad. 

Little Missy has taken up dad's spot while he's gone.  She's been happy to sleep there and I am happy to have her.

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

back from break

last night Hannah and I went to the movies, we saw "the Host" which I liked.  Hannah had not read the book so she thought it was confusing but she liked it.  We went after we dropped Ethan off at player development (read: bonus soccer practice) and left Lu there to help Dad coach (read: play on the playground and bug them :) )We've been wanting a date, actually we've been wanting to go to Georgetown but in the meantime this was good.  First we went to eat enchiladas and then to the show.  It was a nice end to a okay spring break.

The rest of the day was good as well.  The weather finally warmed up and Ethan played outside on the playground with a bunch of friends for many hours.  Grace played with Arden in the morning and Keean in the afternoon.  I did laundry.

Today everyone went back to school.  I thought I was working this week but after only an hour at school the lady they hired came, the principal didn't think she'd get processed so quickly but she did so I got paid for a half day, went home and had free time. (read: did laundry)

Monday, April 1, 2013


Chelsea, Hannah and cute little Alexis
 We had a lovely Easter.  I was feeling much much better, and everyone else was feeling good too.  The kids woke up to Easter treats from the bunny.  Everyone is happy to have a chocolate bunny to nibble :)

We went to church where the meetings were especially good, uplifting and interesting.  Sundays really are my favorite day of the week.

After church we came home and ate a light lunch, I did some cooking, kids did some playing.  Grace was working on her Lego creation, Hannah worked on memorizing her poem for school, R worked on taxes.    Then at 4 we went to the Martines'.   We had a deliciously yummy dinner!  I made a 7 layer salad and a fruit salad and a couple of kinds of spring cookies.  Colleen and Janene made ham, carrots, broccoli, rolls (Chelsea made the rolls actually) and brussel sprouts.  Everyone ate until they were good and full :) Then we played a fun game that Ellie prepared and enjoyed visiting together.  It was a happy day.
Ziva and her egg