Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Happy Birthday, Double Digits!

 Happy Birthday to our sweet Juli-bean.  She turns 10 years old today!  I can't believe it.

Saturday, January 26, 2013

2013 Snowblast

 Here are some photos of this year's annual Snowblast event.  My kids love Snowblast.  I got smart and ordered a cheap 3 pack of sleds from Amazon this year so that we didn't have to wait in the sled line.  Should have thought of that years ago.  Leia and Xander went down ONCE...then wanted nothing else to do with the sledding.  You'll see why in the photos below.  Luckily there is more to do than just a snow hill.  There are also age segregated snow piles and bounce house style toys, rock climbing wall, and a jumping harness thing that my girls particularly love. Bella and Jules finally figured out how to do flips on it this year.  They tried last year and couldn't get the hang of flipping. :)  The last photo melts my heart. 

Tuesday, January 22, 2013


Help me Roomba, you're my only hope!
Our schedule is so slammed this week, the Roomba is the best I can do right now on floor cleaning. She's currently humming along at home while I'm dropping off the preschooler. I've named her Rosie (after the Jetson's robot maid). Thanks Grammy and Grampy.

Monday, January 21, 2013

Test Blogging from phone

It just occurred to me to check for a blogger app for my phone. Voila. Should have thought about that before now. If I could have been posting photos and comments from my phone all this time, I wouldn't have needed such a long hiatus.  Score for phone journaling!  Too bad I can't get that year back from just pressing the Facebook button on my phone camera. Oh well.
Today the girls and I splurged on a bunch of stuff to do gel nails. Bells had paid to get a gel manicure with friends a few weeks ago and really liked it. Seemed like a good investment to just buy the stuff and do them ourselves. Leia declined to have hers done for some reason. She was more interested in Lego's today. They turned out well for our first try. Now we'll see if they last 2-3 weeks without chipping. The big girls really enjoyed doing them.

Sunday, January 20, 2013

The Usual

 I feel like I'm waiting for something "unusual" to write, and everything is just the usual brand of crazy.
(Most of the pictures in this post were from our Thanksgiving Disney Trip)
Bella is kicking middle school's butt, which is awesome.  I hated middle school with a passion, she seems to be enjoying it and thriving. It helps that unlike me, she doesn't look like an 8 year old in middle school, that was not fun. I think the GT placement really helps because all of the students in her academic classes are serious about their schoolwork the way that she is.  It's nice for her to have that environment.  She is still taking piano lessons and doing well with them.  After 3 years of lessons she could really use a new piano, so that will have to happen sometime this year.
Julianne is coming out of her shell more this year.  But now that she's out, I've found that she shares her mother's natural love of sarcasm, so it's a win/lose type of situation.  She is a funny little girl.  Analytical is the word her teachers use for her.  Has no love for anything that can not be solved with math or science.  4th grade is a heavy year for creative writing...which she does not enjoy.  I've noticed she tries to solve the problem by writing the most hilariously formulaic pieces.  She has figured out what the teacher likes to see, and so she whips up a very consistently catchy opening line, and the rest of her writing assignment reads like an instruction manual.  I find it hilarious that she tries to make creative writing into a precise and consistent process.  Needless to say, she and Daniel are a pretty close pair of friends.  They get each other.  She is still playing her violin and I'm hoping that she will stick it out for 1.5 more years until middle school so that she can play during school (fingers crossed).  Violin suits her well, I'm surprised she picked it out of the blue as a little 6 year old and stuck with her desire to continue for 3 years now.
Leia is going through a bit of a middle child phase.  She is often cut/forced out of the super close relationship that her sisters share because they are so close in age, and 3.5-5 years older than her.  She finds Xander frustrating, so they fight a lot.  Hopefully Xander will give up his babyhood soon so that they can enjoy each others company a bit more.  Leia is also doing great in school, and makes friends easily.  Her teachers love her.  She has already managed to score another "Gator of the Month" award, her 2nd or 3rd already since starting Kindergarten last year. She is definitely a people person. She has announced that she wants to play the flute (much like Juli randomly fixated on the violin at the same age).  So....we'll see if that interest holds long enough for me to find a flute teacher for her that accepts students at her age level. It may take awhile to find one.  I'm kind of hoping much like her brief desire to play soccer, she will suddenly change her mind and chose one of the 2 instruments that are already played in this house.

 Xander is currently doing his very best to stay a baby FOREVER.  Seriously y'all,  it has been an extremely long 4.75 years.  He has a very strong personality and feels it is his right and responsibility to control everyone and everything around him at all times.  He is under the mistaken impression that he is in charge of the entire world.  Sometimes I think I'm raising a future Dictator.  His pediatrician says he is just a natural born leader and will grow out of the extreme stubbornness.  (Please let him grow out of it).  Xander attends preschool 4 days/week.  He goes 2 days/week to the preschool that Julianne attended (which he tolerates quite well).  He also attends 2 days/week in a preschool class that I have taken over teaching this year.  Going back to teaching part time after 11 years at home is enough of an adjustment.  Having a student who calls you "Mama" and thinks that he is the boss of you makes it an extra big challenge.  I question my decision to teach a class with him in it every day.  But, we are halfway done, so we're going to stick it out.  The way he does so well for his other preschool teacher gives me high hopes that he will be fine in Kindergarten.  With me it just seems to be a familiarity breeds contempt type of situation.  That or I am just a terrible parent. Sometimes I think that like the Terminator, he was sent here from the future to kill me.  That last part was a joke.  Xander, if you are reading this in the were hilarious and we loved were just the most stubborn and bossy 4 year old we had ever met.  I'm sure you've turned into a fantastic adult, unless you are a which've probably already had me terminated for pouring your milk into the wrong cup or something.

That's the usual around here. :)

Thursday, January 3, 2013

I'm Baaaaaaaaaack!/Toilet Paper Super Hero

I took a nice long break with no plans to return to writing.  What can I say....Facebook and posting photos from my phone with one press of a button killed my blog.  I was looking something up in the archives the other day and realized how useful all of that archived kid information was to me.  Then I realized that since I stopped writing for almost a year, I wasn't making any new useful stuff to look back on in the future.  Wasted opportunity with the rate that these 4 little people are growing up.  Especially since this is the only journal I have.  So, I'm back. Keeping track of what goes on with our family from week to week....ideally...if I can get back on the wagon.  I'm going to give it a go.  For my own sake, and a record for them.  However, you are of course welcome to read your own risk, of boredom that is. ;-)

Funny kid moment to kick this back off.  The girls never remember to restock the toilet paper in their bathroom upstairs.  One of them is always screaming for toilet paper help in an emergency situation.  One little man with a super hero obsession takes the job of rescuing them with toilet paper VERY seriously.  He just ran past me carrying a roll of toilet paper screaming, "I"M COMING!!!! IT'S ME!  ALEXANDER! COMING TO HELP YOU WITH TOY-IT PAPER! HERE I COME!"

Also this week, after a few raging anger fits from losing group games on the Wii U, Daniel taught him to say "good game", instead of freaking out.  Now at the end of every game he either says, "Grrrrrr....(deep breath)....good game guys, good game" or "Woot!  Oh yeah!....good game guys, good game".  You know, depending on the outcome of the game in question.  :)  He definitely keeps us laughing around here.