Thursday, October 01, 2015

Hello Fall!

Bella was in cloud nine.  Any time that she gets a chance to visit a farm, we can count on a happy girl.

On this particular day, we fed apple slices to llamas, goats, and sheep.


The boys were there too.  Graydon enjoyed the apples as much as the animals did.

Curtis felt a little shy, but he eventually came around.  (Side note: When Curtis found out that we were going to a farm, he changed into "farm clothes".  And in his mind, farm clothes are a plaid shirt and jeans.)


This past weekend was our town's annual Heritage Days.  Graydon is officially a Cub Scout and he spent part of the weekend at a booth selling popcorn.  

I spent several hours at the 'Pioneer Village' with the kids.

They sawed a log.

Walked on stilts (definitely popular with them).

Pet animals.

And played tug-of-war.

Sunday afternoon was the parade.  Our church's youth group had a float.

The theme of Heritage Days this year was 'Don't Stop Thinking About Tomorrow'.  We changed the song to 'Don't Stop Thinking About Sunday' and recorded in a couple of weeks prior and "performed" it on the float throughout the parade.

And our group won Best Float!!!  The judges must have liked our song. :)

Also. . . we had some exciting mail come this past week: Magic Bands!  Nine more days until Disney!!!

Tuesday, September 22, 2015

September, so far. . .

Graydon joined Cub Scouts this year.  Here is some video from his rain gutter regatta.  He had a pretty enthusiastic cheerleader (Curtis)!

Andy's parents came down for an extended weekend over Labor Day.  They were hooked up with some CROSS of Hope t-shirts.

While they were here, we went to Anderson Falls.

This little stream led to a little waterfall.


The kids had Monster Hat day at school.  I didn't have time or brain power to come up with a super creative idea, so I made newspaper pirate hats, gave them some art supplies, and had them do the rest.  This is what they came up with.



Curtis was just trying to put the lid on his hot chocolate.

Playing in the hay at a cattle auction.

Bella got this new sock monkey hat from a church friend.  She puts it on every night while reading before bedtime.

The soccer season is officially over.  Bella's team went undefeated until their very last game. Bummer end, but they still had a great season.  This is the only photo I took from when they received their medals.  And since I was the one giving out the medals with the boys' team, no photo there.

I have put out my fall decorations and fall-scented candles.  I am super ready for the beginning of my favorite season!

Thursday, September 17, 2015

Back to School Interviews

I'm a little late on these this year.  I didn't even realize that I forgot to take our first-day-of-school videos until almost a month after school started!  Then I finally took them only to discover that the sound on Bella and Curtis's video didn't record.  No idea on that one.  But it meant that I needed to re-interview them.  Then the upload to You Tube took crazy longer than usual - like 1400 minutes per video!!  This turned into a bigger ideal than I had originally thought.  But here they are.  And I know that I'm going to love looking back on these interviews in the years to come.

Bella's interview.  This recording was even more of a challenge as I ran out of memory on my camera during it.  I deleted some things and got to recording again.  And then my battery died.  Boy oh boy, this was extra difficult this year!

Graydon's interview.  The easiest one.  The original recorded with sound and it uploaded the quickest!  

For their original interviews, all of the kids were in their school clothes.  But it was a Saturday morning when I discovered that Curtis's original video didn't have any sound.  He was still in his jammies and didn't want to get dressed yet.  And he was trying on winter hats.  This is what we ended up with.

I've been back to work for about a month now. I would say that I'm still in the adjustment period as I learn to squeeze all of the things I used to get done while the kids were at school into the evening hours. Life has gotten a little busier, but I am really enjoying my job at the school. It is perfect for this phase of life that we are in. And seeing the kids at school throughout the day is a definite bonus! My days as soccer coach are numbered. We had our final practice last night and our final game tomorrow night. With this ending, that will free up two nights each week. I could use them! But all in all, I have no complaints. Life is good. :)

Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Lots Going On!

We took the kids fishing one Saturday morning.  The following photos make the morning look so tranquil.  It was actually a little stressful.  Graydon's first cast got stuck in a tree.  Then his line got tangled.  That wasn't the only time that happened.  But everyone at least got a little turn.




Later that day, our church had a community cook-out.  Free food and games.  We had a GREAT turnout!







Bella wanted me to take her photo here.  She was practicing her smile for picture day the following morning.

I got a job! After eight years as a stay-at-home-mom, I'm back to work as a teacher's aide at the kids' school.  This is a job that I planned to volunteer doing; but when actual paid positions became available, I applied and was offered a job!  I'm working with the first grade classes and LOVE it so far!  It's a perfect "mom job" since I have all of the same days off/vacations as the kids.

Bella's class had a "Steve Urkel Day".  Their teacher rewarded them with a special day for good behavior.  This was what they chose.  I have NO idea how any of them even know who Steve Urkel is.

I had an awesome birthday celebration this year.  Due to soccer games and a wedding rehearsal that Andy was a part of, we celebrated my birthday a day early.  The kids had a grand greeting for me when I arrived at the Meade's house.

I turned the big 3-5!

My big gift was a new pair of cowboy books.  LOVE them!  I don't have any photos of me wearing them yet, but they are my far my favorite foot accessory!

Such a happy birthday!

Tuesday, August 18, 2015

It's Soccer Time!

Soccer gets going pretty quickly out here. We had our first practice AND first game last week.  And when I say "we", I literally mean, all FIVE of us.  All three kids are playing this season. . . and I'm coaching! {With Andy as my lovely assistant}.

As far as coaching goes, I am completely unqualified as I have never played soccer in my life.  And I initially tried to get out of it; but as time ticked on and coaching positions still weren't filled. . . I gave in.  Fortunately, it's a fairly low pressure position.  I'm coaching Graydon and Curtis's team of eight 5 & 6-year-olds.  We don't keep score at the games and we're just getting them exposed to the game.  But still, I do feel a little in over my head!

Here's Miss Bella before her game.  She was pretty excited to be on the orange team.

She and Tyler ended up on the same team!

Pre-game stretches.

While I was watching Bella, I lost track of Graydon.  After looking around for a moment or two, I spotted him across the field, running on the track.

Our girl in action!

The rest of us are on the red team.

I tried to strike a delicate balance of coaching and taking a few snapshots of the kids playing.




Three hot, sweaty, and tired soccer players.

Andy had a surprise for them after the game.

New fishing rods for each of them.

We used them the next day.