Showing posts with label Seasons. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Seasons. Show all posts

Just Chatting



I pour a little half and half in the bottom of a pink marble mug, and top it off with sub-par coffee because we are out of the good stuff.  The kids are eating breakfast and watching an episode of Little Bear.  There are some TV shows that wind kids up, and some that are calming to children, and thankfully Little Bear is of the calming variety in our household.

I go around the corner and settle into the homeschool room.  I set up this room so we'd have a quiet(ish) corner of the house to do work in, but I've also found it serves quite well in the morning when I am trying to sneak in some personal Bible study time.  I am working through Hebrews (again), and close my eyes to run through the first three chapters in my head.  I was hoping to have chapter four memorized by now, but I always am too optimistic on these things, no matter how hard I try to be realistic.

And now quiet time is over, the kids are starting to get bored with Little Bear, and I am still sitting down to attempt to write this chatty post.



On Being "So Busy" And Feeling Like Myself

Elizabeth wrote a similar post about hobbies recently, and she mentioned that although she would never want to poo-poo those who are single when they say they "are so busy" (because doesn't every stage feel so busy?), the difference when you have kids is that you're busy, and any time you start something there is always the possibility of being interrupted.  I fully concur with that.  There are so many things I don't try to do, or posts I don't start to write, because I know I'm going to get interrupted.  But this is me breaking the pattern and spilling out some words anyway, even though I will likely be interrupted in the next five minutes.  Something is better than nothing, right?

March is the first month this year where I've actually felt like myself again!  I don't know what it was about January and February, but I just felt somewhat lost both months, like I was running to catch up to my life.  I realized I probably had to let some things go, and cut some things out of my life that were discouraging me.  I quit Bible study because it was just too much right now, put myself on a social media diet because I was escaping to it too often, and planned a few spontaneous field trip days for me and the kids because I used to do that all the time and I miss it.  

(I didn't know what photo to put in this section, so here is me in January, before my non-burgundy roots started to grow out. Maybe I should get my hair re-done one of these days...a hair appointment has never hindered me from feeling like myself, just saying.)

On Not Hating Spring Anymore

Though I do actually enjoy the winter, seeing some signs of Spring has helped bring me out of the duldrums as well.  I took the kids to a park twice this week, and we could have been in short sleeves, it was so nice.  The grass is greening up in town, and I am keeping my eyes peeled for flowering trees to start budding so I can whip out my camera and get some spring-time pictures of the kids (the only thing I regret about living in the mountains is that we don't have flowering trees).






The kids like to bring me "flowers" from outside, even though it's really just handfuls of dead grass (don't try to tell them that though).  But I was pleased to see the other day that in the midst of the grass and dirt clods that were left on my counter, there was a small, green, fern-like plant as well.  So spring is coming, even in the mountains.  

I used to hate spring, hate it, because up here it's mostly just mud season.  Snow is melting, but nothing is growing yet, and your shoes are constantly muddy.  But somewhere in the last couple years I realized maybe my loathing of spring was based on a limited, immature view of it.  When I was young, I hated hiking too, but now I enjoy the exercise.  When I was young, I hated going on mountain drives because it seemed boring, but now I love to explore new roads in the car and find all the gorgeous views.  When I was young, I hated spring because it was muddy and dull...and it's still rather muddy and dull, but when you look closer, you can see the signs of life returning after a long winter, and there is something more refreshing about it now.  Everything starts new again.  There is a redemption to it that I never saw when I was young.

Of course, it also helps that I can now drive to places where there are flowering trees (I love flowering trees).

On Medieval Guilds, Juggling, And Music

We are on the countdown until the end of the school year, and I have been tracking the days on our calendar and the lessons left in our curriculum book daily to make sure they are lining up.  I am not one who thinks you must finish the book before the end of the year, but I also don't want to reach our last day and realize we only have a few more lessons left.  The Type-A side of me would not be able to rest.  We are mostly on track though, and I am thinking of tripling up on our math lessons for a couple weeks so we can finish math early and take the last month of school to just focus on "fun stuff" - history and science.  I think it might be a nice way to wind down the year.

Speaking of winding down the school year, and also speaking of history, our co-op is doing our big spring event next week, a medieval "guild".  Each family is supposed to pick a trade, make some goods, and dress up in medieval garb to come barter at the marketplace.  I cannot tell you how much mental anguish I have gone through trying to figure out what to make.  I had signed us up to be weavers, but then realized how ridiculous it was to think that I could "weave" (knit) enough...something...to trade at the guild, all by myself.  Because of course my little non-knitting kids would not be a help.  I was thinking about shifting to some other simple cloth-related craft, but couldn't come up with a tight enough idea.  So after much frustration I switched us to being the jugglers.  Juggling is kind of a trade, right?  Court jesters and all that?  Okay, no, none of us can actually juggle, but we can make some pretty neat little juggling balls, and it's a lot simpler than weaving something.

And speaking of co-op, we also did a field trip the other day to an "inside the orchestra" event, and it immediately made me regret not taking up the violin in my younger days.  It also made me want to break out my flute again.  It's really tricky to learn how to make the flute actually make noise, and I already have that part down from years ago, so I'm halfway to playing it, right?  In reality I am not a very musically talented person, but I so wish I was.  Enthusiasm counts for something, I think.



On Book Clubs And Reading Too Many Books At Once

Despite never thinking I could keep up with a book club, I have found myself in two book clubs over the last year.  I get excited about book clubs because it's so nice to read a book and have someone to talk to about it.  I love reading a book at the same time as friends or family so we can discuss it later.  But I will also admit that I get a smidge stressed about book clubs or buddy reads, because I am such an ADD reader.  I can't stick with just one book!

Recently I decided enough is enough and I would just read one book at a time, and read that book clear through before picking up another one.  That idea lasted for all of one book before I was back to reading a chapter here and there from five books again.  The problem is that I am a mood reader, and my moods change so often.  I also have a terrible time deciding what I am in the mood for and feel like I have to try five books before I can decide...and then I inevitably never decide and just continue piece-mealing five books at once.

(Who am I kidding, it's more like 10-15 books at once.)

I am going to try the one book thing again, maybe with my most recent bookclub book, Far From The Madding Crowd.  Have you read that one?  PSA: It's free on Kindle.

Chime in, do you play musical instruments, enjoy or hate spring, read too many books at once, or have experience with medieval guilds?  

Tips and tricks appreciated.

The Summer Album: The Sequel


Let's continue with my recap to our summer, shall we?  See yesterday's post for Part One.

Our 10-Year Anniversary

We celebrated our 10 year anniversary this summer!  Anniversary trip is still to come, but we did go to a fun local restaurant/petting zoo/park to celebrate.  The kids ran around and played, and we ate Southern comfort food.




Ballet Class For Gwen

Gwen has been dying to do ballet all year, and was beside herself with excitement when we finally signed her up!  She loved it so much.  We will probably be doing another class for her in the future - it was so sad to see her disappointment on her last day of ballet.  Clarice also dressed up in ballet clothes and tagged along a couple times.




Art Projects On The Porch

A lot of the summer looked like this - just having around at home and goofing off.


Naps

We took a lot of naps.


Lots Of Birthday Parties For Friends And Family

There were a lot of birthday parties this year.  We went to splash pads, and a couple bouncy house parties (one coming up this weekend).  


Trip To Six Flags

A friend of mine got a season pass to Six Flags, and invited me to go with her for a mom's day out!  Derek and I went to an amusement park a couple years ago, and we got sick on a few of the rides but found our sweet spot by the end of the day, so I figured I'd be fine.  My friend and I had a ton of fun, riding all the roller coasters and getting a chance to talk uninterrupted by children!  I did get nauseous between rides though and had to sip a lot of water - why are adult stomachs not as hardy as kid stomachs?  It's just not fair.  I'm bringing Dramamine next time.


$1 Movies At The Theater

Some of our local theaters do $1 kid movies over the summer, so we went to see a couple of them!  I want to go more next summer, it's a fun day out for all of us and it's a nice little break for me!



Campfire In The Backyard

They finally lifted the fire ban toward the end of the summer, so we had a backyard campfire strait away!









Camping On The Porch

We also threw in camping on the porch, because why not?





Trip To See Dinosaur Footprint Fossils

We had an opportunity to hear a creationist geologist speak at a nearby area with dinosaur footprint fossils.  His talk was more geared toward the adults, and I found it interesting (until we had to dive out because the sun was becoming a little too much for Georgie).  The kids were fascinated by the dinosaur footprints, and we all wished we could search through those rocks on the side of the road for fossils.







Last Hoorah For Summer Camping Trip

We decided to take a camping trip on the last weekend before we started school this week!  We went to a KOA, and it was amazing.  They had a water park included in the price of the campsite, so we spent several hours there, letting the kids play!  The water wasn't very deep, so I could just let them go off by themselves while I watched.  It was so much fun!  We also snuck in a hike and trip to "Whit's End".  We got one more campfire in before the summer ended.  It was lovely.










Now Autumn is officially welcome to start!

The Summer Album




Every year, summer goes by so fast.  I start off with all these great expectations of all the fun things that we will squeeze into these warm-weather months, and by the time August rolls around I'm left wondering what happened.  But sometimes it helps to take a look not at what I had planned for the summer, but all the things we actually did!  And then I realize that we actually did make the most of our summer, just in a different way than I planned.  So this post is just a little recap of our summer, complete with photos of my cute kids.  Read on (and perhaps comment and tell me one unexpected fun thing you did this summer!).


Antique Store Trip And My Birthday Party

I wrote more about this in June, but Derek planned a birthday party for me wince I turned 30 at the beginning of the summer!





Trip To Visit My Grandparents

In June we took a trip to visit my grandparents, who live part of the year across the state.  We love visiting them!  They are also game people, like Derek and me, so we take the opportunity to have game nights!



Fishing With my Grandparents

This was the kids' first time fishing! They love it now, and are constantly asking us to go again!  The boys both caught a pretty good size trout, and Gwen had another one on the line but it got away!








Hiking With My Grandparents

We went hiking when we were there too!






Exploring Local Ice Cream/Coffee Shop

This summer, I decided to try to take advantage of the amenities we actually do have in our little mountain town, instead of always driving to the city.  We visited our local ice cream/coffee shop, and took advantage of local parks.  It was nice to stay closer to our home when we wanted to get out, and I'm looking forward to continuing more local adventures in the fall.



Hikes (By Ourselves And With Friends)

We went on several hikes this summer, by ourselves and with friends!  The big kids are big enough to actually hike this year, and Georgie was still little enough to carry in my baby carrier, so we were in a sweet spot.  Next year will probably be more difficult again while Georgie is learning to walk, so I'm glad we were able to get into the mountains a little this summer!












Fourth Of July - Fireworks and Fun At My Parents House!

We had a lovely 4th of July!  We went to fireworks on July 3rd by ourselves, and then spent the actual 4th with my family at my parents house. 







Come back tomorrow for a few more photos!  I got a little carried away and had to split this into two posts.







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