The challenge this week is summer. I chose to post a picture of my zinnias. My grandpa used to plant zinnias every year, then would gather the seeds at the end of the season and save them until the next year. My grandma continued this tradition after my grandpa went to be with Jesus. Once Kevin and I had a house, Grandma gave me a bag of seeds to plant. We have planted them for years and collect the seeds as well. A couple of years ago I could NOT find my bag of seeds so we bought some zinnia plants – which, of course, wasn’t the same. In the middle of that summer – I found my seeds!!! So now we are back to the seeds that originally came from my grandpa’s flowers!! It is a fun summer tradition for us. They are beautiful and HUGE! The girls are excited to help gather seeds! Enjoy!!
My sweet little niece turns 4 in early August. Because of the chaos of everyone’s summer schedules, the best date to celebrate with her (with ALL the cousins) was early July. So my niece and nephews, my mom, my grandma, my sil, and my sister all came to our house for a little party. It is hard to believe that she is turning 4 – seems like she was just born. She is a doll and we loved celebrating with her!!!
The glasses are courtesy of my grandma.
I know I am a little behind my “weekly check-ins”- oops. This summer has been CRAZY!! Fun, but crazy!! We have had multiple birthday parties and lots of play-dates!! And the weather has finally gotten HOT so we are spending as much time in/near water as we can.
We are starting school in just over 3 weeks so I am planning/preparing like crazy – literally every spare minute. Adding Lucy into the mix is making me feel a little overwhelmed! Not adding her – but adding one more. I know we can do it but it may take a little longer to get into a good routine. What does Norah do while I am working one on one with Lucy and vice versa? What will Daphne do while I am working with Norah and Lucy at the same time? Last year, Lucy was a huge help by playing with Daphne while I worked with Norah on things that she needed my undivided attention. Like I said, I know we will figure it out but we may need to work out some kinks.
Oh, and I also have been trying to organize our school stuff in our unfinished part of the basement. A year ago Kevin put up an old countertop at the girls level to make an art table. I thought that it would be so fun to have an art table in the unfinished part so I don’t have to worry about paint getting on anything. We hung some shelves and I began organizing – a year ago. Then the counter became a gathering place for stuff. This is what it looked like when I started (let me warn you – it is BAD):
It is almost done – but we have a large box in the middle of the floor now (another project). I will take after pictures soon, but let me just say that Norah and Lucy have spent several hours back there already!! I am so excited for them to just be able to create!!
Besides all the planning that I am doing, we are trying to take advantage of our last couple of weeks of summer. Lots of fun to be had!!
Last week was about the craziest yet! Norah and Lucy had VBS all week and they had a blast. I enjoyed several mornings alone with just Daphne. On Monday morning she and I came straight home to play after dropping off Norah and Lucy at the church. She had a snack and then we played for 2 hours straight. When it was time to head back to the church, I said, “Daphne, it’s time to go.” She replied, “Where, Mom?” I said, “To church to get the big girls.” She replied with a giggle, “Oh, uh got (forgot).” I thought it was funny that in a couple of hours she had forgotten about picking up Norah and Lucy!! The girls have been singing their songs constantly!! It is so cute!!
The girls also finished up their swim lessons. Everyone was a bit nervous – they always are at the beginning of the season – but they ended up doing fantastic!! The first week was HOT! I think it was about 100 degrees even at 7 p.m. The second week was the opposite – it was cloudy and cold, with the threat of rain each day. The goal of Daphne’s class was obviously to get them comfortable with the water. She has no problem with that but she can’t be in the next class until she is 3. One of us had to get in the water with her – so Kevin and I took turns.
This picture is appropriate after the week of rain we had. Everyday we wondered if we would actually have swim lessons.
The goals of Lucy’s class are to get the kids to start swimming with their faces under the water, to practice kicking and to introduce arm movements. She did great with the kicking and the arms, but was not interested in putting her face under until the last day. She did great and is excited to swim more this summer!
The goals of Norah’s class are to continue practicing basic swimming strokes, learning to tread water in the deep end, building confidence and, apparently, jumping off the diving board. We didn’t know that jumping off the diving board was part of the class until the end of the first week Norah’s teacher made her jump off. Norah walked to the end – refused to jump so the swim team coach came up behind her and dropped her in the water (she quickly told Norah what she was going to do before she actually did it). I was stunned – to say the least. I really didn’t think that at 7 – that it was absolutely necessary to force her to jump off. By the second week, though, Norah was confident enough to jump off by herself multiple times.
For Father’s Day we went to the Aquaport. We bought a voucher through Living Social and for 4 people it was a great deal. Despite the crazy amount of rain we have had over the last week, this afternoon was beautiful!! Great day for the pool!!
This week is going to be a little more relaxing – hopefully.
As mentioned in my previous post – we had a CRAZY – but fun – week last week. We had a play date everyday except Tuesday, swimming lessons Mon- Thurs, and doctor’s appts. We were all relieved to have Saturday come and not have to go anywhere or do anything.
Of course, I didn’t take my camera to any of our play dates. I seriously need to be better about that. Oh, I should add that it was about 100 degrees ALL week so it was hot! We played with the Diehl family one day – the girls were excited to see the boys!! Now that the kids are a little older and busier we really don’t see them more than a handful of times a year. We met at a park, and while Nicole and I tried to stay cool, the kids ran and climbed and laughed – steering clear of the cicadas! They parked it under the playground equipment for some relief from the heat!! We had lunch and shortly after a school bus dropped off a huge group of kids we decided to head out!
We also played with the Good girls one day. The kids were all over – inside, outside, upstairs, downstairs – playing dress-up, hide and seek, legos, Barbies. Sarah and I enjoyed catching up – even though our conversation was constantly interrupted by any one of 6 little girls!
We went to my sister’s one day to play with Ryan and Will. The kids played on the slip n slide most of the time. They started by sliding down by themselves. Then they were catching cicadas and sliding with them down the slip n slide. They ended by just throwing the cicadas down the slip n slide. We did have lunch, and Lucy, DJ and Will made pictures with stickers. It was a fun, active few hours together!!
We spent the evening on Friday at the Harper’s – our good friends from church. This was a little good-bye play date because they leave for Singapore in a couple of days. They will be gone for 2-3 years. It is never easy to say good-bye to friends and saying good-bye to the Harper family was especially difficult. Karen and I met 5 years ago at our women’s Bible study at church. We clicked instantly and the fact that we each had a new baby girl and a 2 year old girl was a huge bonus! Norah and Kate were also instant friends, and Lucy and Brooke became friends as they grew up together. Over the last 5 years we have had play dates, girl’s nights out, and family dinners. The Harper’s have been a HUGE blessing to our family and we will miss them dearly!! Thankfully, we had one more chance this morning at church to say good-bye and the girls had lots of hugs for each other (and I took my camera so we were able to get a few pics)!!
Lucy, Kate, Norah, Brooke and Daphne (I took her cup away from her so she is yelling, “Mommy, thirsty! I need dink!)
Kate and Norah
Let me just add this – I really hope no more of Norah’s good friends move anytime soon. 2 in less than a year is more than enough for a 7 year old!!
The girls were exhausted by Saturday so we had a few meltdowns – by all!! They were able to catch up on sleep a little this weekend and we are gearing up for another BUSY week!!
Swimming lessons need a post of their own – so I will save that for after this week of lessons!!
Since I know my dad is checking my blog to see if I stick with my weekly check-in (aka pictures of his granddaughters), here it is:
Everyone was sick at some point over the last week – blah. Norah needed breathing treatments and antibiotics for ear infections, Lu had a nasty stomach bug, and DJ has some adenoid virus that is accompanied by a BAD cough and sore throat. Ick.
Despite the sickness, we have had moments where everyone felt decent at the same time. We are shopping around for some new living room furniture. We bought our cream colored furniture -which has been really loved over the past 10 year as noted by the holes, stain and missing pillows. Ha! We wanted to wait until we were basically done potty training – we are almost there. Yea! As much as I would LOVE new furniture – we refuse to spend a lot so we have to shop around!!! The kids have been fabulous at the furniture stores – they love imagining every single piece of furniture somewhere in our house.
Speaking of potty training – overall, Daphne is doing great!! Today was our worst day so far – with multiple accidents. The norm has been 1 accident a day – at the most. I couldn’t help myself – I had to post this picture. Sorry, Dad, I know he will think it is inappropriate, but it is so cute!! I was reading a book to her each time she sat on the potty and if she goes, she gets a jelly bean. After a couple of days, she decided that she wanted to read the Bible. When I ask her if she wants me to read her a book, she replies, “No, Mommy, me read Bible.” She just fingers through it and stops on any page that has something underlined. Then she passes it to me and asks me to read it. Cracks me up!
We also made it to the pool over the weekend. All three girls had a great time – and can’t wait for swimming lessons which start tonight!!
We have a super busy week ahead so hopefully I will remember to take lots of pictures!! We have a play date almost everyday this week!!
We had a great night with the Diehl family. I have more pics to come – just too tired to do it now. Had to post this picture, though. Love it!!
Jack-2 1/2, Lucy-4, Bennett-5, Norah-6, Luke-7, Daphne-17 mo.
We have been getting together on the 4th since before Luke (who is 7 1/2) was born. I think this is the first 4th in a LONG time that there isn’t a brand new baby or one on the way.