Tuesday, October 21, 2014

1st field trip.

Sylvie was so excited to go on her first field trip today! Her class visited Liberty Baptist's pumpkin patch, went on a hayride through the woods, listened to a story, and chose a couple pumpkins to take back to their classroom. 

Saturday, September 13, 2014

The Nest (detached garage with apartment)

IMG_5577 Welcome to The Nest! This will soon be our temporary home while we (mostly Randy) do all the finish work inside the big house. So we'll be going from about 2,000 sq. feet of living space to 728 sq. feet. The garage will be where most of our current house is stored. The electrician and plumber (who are one and the same) has the wiring and plumbing roughed in already, so we're waiting on the roof and siding before we can go much further. After that, it's our deal. After we've moved out, it's going to be the guest house and the garage will be Randy's shop.

IMG_5578 Washer and dryer hookup are behind Randy.

Entry. Living room is to the left.

Living room

IMG_5583 In the living room looking towards the dining area in the corner with the two windows.

IMG_5580 Dining area

IMG_5581 In dining area looking into kitchen. The sink will be under the window. The fridge and oven will be opposite the sink wall. That's the kids' bedroom beyond.

Kids' room and a kid. Sylvie claimed this room for them because it looks out into the woods so they can see deer.


Mine and Randy's room. The bedrooms have surprisingly good closet space for being so small (about 10x10.)

Friday, September 12, 2014

Little (big) House on the Pasture

IMG_5542 This is what's been going on for the past month and a half! It's been surreal having the house plan that I know inside out start coming to life.
  IMG_5553I took a bunch of photos of the inside to do a little tour, but then suddenly the framing was DONE. The windows and most of the outside doors are in now, so I'll be taking updated photos this weekend to post. I've relied on Instagram to track progress as it's gone so fast. It's slowing down now, and while it will be neat to see the roof and siding go on, the rest will likely be pretty boring as the plumbing, wiring, and insulation go in. I can't wait for drywall to go up and really make the rooms take shape!

Saturday, August 16, 2014

First Day of School.

Those socks!
He would have rather walked in on his own, but I told him it was a mama's (and a daddy's) job to walk him to class the first day of school.
He has an awesome teacher! She was a friend of mine during middle and high school, and one of her little girls is Sylvie's best friend from play school.

Missy Prissy was SO excited to start pre-k!

She is in the same pre-k classroom as Elliot was, so she remembers the routine of hanging up her backpack on the porch. Piggy had a much needed back-to-school bath, and gets to hang out in Sylvie's cubby until nap time everyday.
Mrs. Bailey and Mrs. Pam!
She was nervous, but very brave. No tears or clinging to us!
Sylvie said she had so much fun, and talked non-stop about her day and all the things they did. Elliot, in typical Elliot fashion, grinned and looked thrilled as we pulled up to pick him up, then turned into Mr. Grumpkins as soon as his rear end landed in the seat of the van, said he didn't have a good day, and that his stomach hurt all day. He mumbled, grumbled, and complained about everything, refused to share any details of his day, and then eventually perked back up about a half hour later.

Thursday, July 31, 2014

Kids say...

It's probably the hottest part of the summer right now, and Randy and I are attempting to get back into jogging. The kids are kinda miserable hanging out at the track while we do laps. Elliot puked one evening after jogging a lap, and was stung by a wasp another evening (first time, and happy to report that he had no reaction.)  Sylvie was in a Mama mood (almost always) yesterday evening so she managed to keep up with us walking and jogging so she could stay beside me. She gave up after a while, but not before one last attempt to convince me to stop and carry her. "Mama, my brain just feels like it needs you."

Tuesday, May 6, 2014

Kids say...

Sylvie: Let's play a game!
Me: Ok, what kind of game do you want to play?
Sylvie: Make one up!
Me: I know a really fun one! It's called Sylvie Lays Down in her Bed and Takes a Nap.
Sylvie: *groans in disgust and dramatically slaps her hand across her eyes* That is an AWFUL game.

Sunday, April 13, 2014

Church egg hunt.

Mr. Speedy was too fast for Daddy to get any photos of while hunting eggs!

Sylvie was thrilled with hunting eggs!

Bright and colorful!

Going through his goodies.

Yay, Sixlets!

So serious.

Saturday, April 12, 2014

T-ball girl.

Sylvie's first t-ball game of the season was Friday evening, and she did so well! The folks in charge don't want parents out on the field this year, and while I understand the reasoning, it's hard for some of these little ones (3-4 year olds) that are timid. Sylvie was super brave! And darn cute in her uniform!

Coach Cole instructing one of Sylvie's little friends from play school.

Getting ready for her turn at bat.

Oops, missed it!

So excited!!

On first base. That happy little face is so sweet peeking out from her ball cap!

She said she ran so fast that she was kicking up dust, haha!

Coming into third.

Good throw, Syl!

Uh-oh, distracted by dirt!

Good game!

Friday, April 11, 2014

Baseball boy.

Elliot's first coach pitch game of the season was yesterday evening! He had a great time, and didn't seem bothered by not getting a hit. This is his first year out of t-ball, and the game is a lot more serious. They can strike out, be tagged out, and are keeping score. It's a bit of a learning curve, and I could tell many of the kids were a little confused about the whole striking out deal and having to head back to the dugout after only three tries at bat. Little kids in ball uniforms are adorable!

Taking a few practice swings while on deck.

Sylvie and Elliot's cutie-pie little friend, Lilly, was on the opposing team. That's her parents, Angel and Lee, right behind her bat.

Look at that happy fella! I think he's was more excited about getting his post game juice and snack than his team winning, haha!

Thursday, April 10, 2014

Tadpole tank.

Mikey getting a closer look at the tadpole tank.

It's hard to see the little guys, but there are a bunch at the base of the soldier. They're munching on lettuce bits.

Scenes from the "farm"

Catching tadpoles.

Maybe another 1-1 1/2 feet to go before being completely full.

The backside of the dam.

Turkey tracks are EVERYWHERE.

Newborn grass.

We plan on building in the corner where the pine trees meet the hardwoods.

Randy set up the fish feeder. It will shoot food out for a few seconds a couple times a day.

The little inlet where the creek feeds the pond.

Randy installed a couple trail cams. We can't wait to see what images they capture!

Wednesday, April 9, 2014


I've been feeling the homebody pull and tug strongly these past weeks. Although I don't use them to their fullest, the rare evening that nothing is going on feels like an unexpected gift. As much as I enjoy having Elliot and Sylvie involved in tball and coach pitch, I anticipate practices and games with a little bit of annoyance. It interrupts our home time. I finally filled in the dry erase calendar for April this past weekend, and it's jam packed. With young kids, we're in the very early stages of extracurricular activities that eat into our home time. I can't quite fathom what the calendar is going to look like as the years progress. I want to protect our home time, and I foresee it being quite a task as the kids get older. It's going to be a battle to pick and choose and guide the kids in their choices. Our family time is something I plan on fiercely protecting. My mom always tells me we do too much, and I totally get it. Slowwww down.

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Farm happenings.

We have a pond, a newly enhanced driveway, a pasture, and a homesite! But we also have RAIN. The rain is great for filling up the pond, and it's only a couple feet shy of being full, but the rain is not great for progress on everything else. We have MUD! We need to have 4 wheel drive. The mud is keeping a few finishing touches on the pond from happening, and the rain is keeping the giant mountains of stumps in the pasture from being burned.

    The newly chosen house plan is in our builder's hand for him to work up detailed estimates, and we'll be starting loan paperwork this week. So next on the list is a well, septic, and electricity. I am dreaming of the day we put up a shiny new mailbox with our new house number on it! I have no idea when that will actually be. I'm hoping around Thanksgiving, but that might be extremely optimistic. I'm so very ready for housebuilding to get underway. I'm chomping at the bit to make our final decisions on cabinets and flooring and paint and windows and all the millions of things that will soon take over my brain even more than they already are! My Pinterest boards are getting out of control.

As far as actual farm type progress goes, we have a pond full of baby bluegills and catfish! That's approx. 2800 fishy babies, and we'll add bass in another month or so. The fish feeder came in today so we can fatten them all up. Randy bought a spreader for his tractor and spread grass seed on the dam and around the pond. We haven't seen any sprouting yet, but I'm hoping that the rain we've had yesterday and today is going to kick start that, and not just wash it all down into the pond. I want to get martin houses up very soon, and we've talked about going ahead and setting up a few bee boxes sooner rather than later. Seeding the pasture needs to happen soon, but it's a big muddy lumpy mess. We ordered two trail cams so we can get a glimpse of the critters that we're sharing the farm with. We've seen loads of deer tracks and turkey tracks, raccoon prints in the mud, and what we're guessing to be fox tracks, or maybe coyote. We've seen the turkey before, maybe 15 or so high tailing it into the woods. We have a huge population of frogs, and have set up a tank of tadpoles at home to watch grow up. We've had Canadian geese visiting the pond, martins flying over, bats coming out at dusk, and we spotted an owl one evening, too. I can't wait to get the cameras set up this week!

Monday, April 7, 2014

Kids say… (blast from the past)

*I'm not sure when this draft was from, probably 2 years or a little longer.*

Sylvie pronounces all hard c's as t's. She drinks from a tup, drives her tars (cars) on the floor, pretends to be a baby tow (cow), and laughs when she sees Elliot's bootie twack (crack). It's pretty cute!

Neither Elliot nor Sylvie can say the L sound. So I hear "Wook at me, Mama!" all the time.

Elliot can't say ninja. He always drops the n at the beginning to make it inja.

He always pronounces "ceiling" as "sea lion". And since he can't say the L, it's actually "sea wion".

Kids say… (blast from the past)

*Found this in my drafts. Elliot is now 5 3/4, so it's from 2 years ago!*

Elliot has really reached the stage where he's starting to say all kinds of hilarious things that crack me and Randy up! And he does stuff and says things that make us just look at each other all big-eyed with wonder at how wicked SMART this kid is. So despite how often I feel like I'm failing at this parenting gig, I MUST be doing something right, right!? One of the things that sends me on a guilt trip is that I don't record this stuff. Their baby books...totally empty. I write things down occasionally on scraps of paper that get lost, or on my Facebook status, but I need to keep better records. Sometimes Elliot will come up with a doozy while Randy is at work, and by the time he gets home I've already forgotten it. I definitely have Mommy Brain Syndrome, so annoying!

So here's a little report on Mr. Elliot just for my memory's sake.

Elliot @ age 3 3/4 (almost)

favorite color - blue and sometimes he claims that he likes allll of the colors.

favorite stuffed animal - Baby Bear (of course) and Walter the Owl (Walter just had surgery at Build A Bear to replace his sound chip that stopped working. Randy gleefully and so maturely calls it Walter's hooter.)

favorite book - his Richard Scarrey books and Fisher-Price lift-a-flap books

favorite toy - it varies from day to day but his Playmobile airplane, Matchbox airport and airplanes, and his big firetruck usually are repeat favorites.

favorite things to do outside - fly his tiny airplane kite if it's windy, help Daddy work, throw the ball for our dog Lily.

favorite songs - Twinkle Twinkle Little Star, ABCs, Jesus Loves Me. He's started singing a lot over the past 3-4 months, particularly when we're trying to eat dinner. Hearing Baa Baa Black Sheep 20 times in a row gets old real fast. He can also tap out the rhythm of a couple songs on his little drum which totally amazes me!

Latest funny things he's said that I can remember - On the way to church we pass the old elementary school that Randy and I went to until it closed when I was 8. He pointed it out and asked if it was a school, and I told him that it was and that Daddy and I went to school there when we were really little. He replied, "As little as a mouse?"
This afternoon Randy asked him if his head was hurting. He responded, "No, it feels good! It feels hard!"

Favorite food and drink - peanut butter and jelly or grilled cheese sandwiches, strawberry milk

Favorite game - pretending to be a variety of baby animals, the most common being a baby cat and a baby turtle. He drags around his "shell" (a big laundry basket) which he likes to hide in. He'll lay with his shell balanced on his back and tell me to be a mean dog, and when I bark at him he snatches his arms, legs, and head into the laundry basket. Pretty cute! Randy reported that while he and Elliot were on a Daddy/Son outing this weekend, Elliot laid down in the restaurant booth seat and covered his face. When asked what he was doing, he said he was a sleeping snake and was waiting on someone to come to their table so he could wake up and scare them. He also had a brief obsession with being a baby bush baby the other month and would leap from sofa to chair. He insists that I am the mama animal of whatever baby animal he is pretending to be at the time. Mama Bush Baby doesn't leap wherever she goes though!

The Yucky Stuff -
Oh my, the defiance!! Temper. Yelling. Ordering Randy and I around. Hitting his sister. TV obsession (which I fuel because of sheer laziness). Battles over getting him to eat. Nap time/quiet time battles. I think the kid is bored to death, and I'm not doing my part to keep him engaged.

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Kids say...

Reported by Randy -
    Sylvie and Elliot were playing in the backyard on their swings while Randy was in the kitchen. He heard Elliot screeching and peeked out the window to see him happily swinging and practicing the super shrill, ear piercing, glass shattering shrieks he has a talent for. Sylvie was on her swing, and not looking too pleased. Sylvie came running in a few minutes later, upset over something. It turns out that Elliot told her he was calling eagles, and it was scaring her because he said they were going to eat her up!

Elliot likes to pretend to be a baby squirrel or chipmunk, especially at bedtime. His squirrel name is Nut-Nut.

I was helping Sylvie get ready for bed last night, and we had to blow her nose and use her nose spray. She pointed at her right nostril and told me it was the bathroom, and that her left nostril was her bedroom. Huh?

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Kids say...

Conversation with Sylvie as she was licking a ring pop candy -

Sylvie: Mmmmm!
Me: Is it yummy? What does it taste like? (wondering if it was strawberry or cherry)
Sylvie: It tastes like princesses! All my dreams came true!
Me: Huh? What does a princess taste like?
Sylvie: Boobies!!

I have no idea where that came from.