Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Not everyone is thrilled about having a picture taken. Not sure how the lens got so dirty!
Remembered my camera yesterday, so here's a beginning of the year picture. The boys were teasing Samuel about being handsome, which helped me get a good smile out of him. Notice Caleb with his lunch box. Notice, also the chopped bangs Hannah has. I was fixing my cutting job, since I don't usually cut bangs, and had to leave to ref the older ones. When I came back, Caleb informed me he had cut her hair. Oh, dear! At least it doesn't have that far to grow to match the rest of her bangs.

I keep forgetting how the time has gone by since Hannah came home. 6 weeks ago was the 1st breakfast together. I will stop saying that eventually. ;)

We had a great day in school yesterday. I was able to sit in Samuel's class, happily knitting, while seeing what we need to be working on at home. C and H went to their little play place after lunch and did well without me. I'm sure music was great, and when I asked H about it later, she said, "alligator." That helps them remember 4 quarter notes. She showed me how they did "fast" and "slow" with the plates they fan themselves with to the beat of the music. (That's a lot of prepositional phrases!) One thing I'm dealing with is that I can tell when H has an attitude, but no one else hears it. So while I'm trying to teach, she wants things and I tell her to be quiet or that she can't have it, she lets me know she doesn't appreciate what I've told her. Once I tell her to stop it, she smiles her little smile- I know there are people around and I just want to see what I can get away with. Doesn't really bother anyone else, but I think she's doing well enough to pursue getting her into the nursery/preschool area in a few weeks where she can be playing and moving around instead of sitting in her stroller at the table.

Mom came for lunch, actually to pick up her chicken order, and told me how good H looks, how much healthier. I'm so glad to hear that. You know when you see it every day, it's harder to notice the changes. I really need to go back to look at pictures from the first days. Anyway, H walked all over when the chapel was mostly empty and walked to her class. She is very capable, but I think she waits for the permission as well as the requirement to do more.

They all did much better on the fighting/whining front last night, praise the Lord!

Buddy took S to scouts last night, and the little ones were in bed by 6:30, so Catherine and I had a great time playing with the sidewalk chalk (made the solar system somewhat to scale) and some card games. It was very nice to relax with each other.

Buddy took the suburban to work, since he has some things that need to be done on his truck. So, we're homebound today, which is just fine with me. I think it sounds like a good day for reading and playing educational games. After we get some work done! Speaking of which, it's time to do some educating!

Saturday, August 28, 2010


the missing walkie talkie that everyone was sure they put right where they were supposed to. And while we were finding that, we found the remote and another library book!
Sadly, also found is a fascination with dumping out soap bottles and unrolling toilet paper/putting the whole roll in the toilet.
It's quiet here- Buddy went to work for a bit, Catherine is at a sleepover from last night and so is Samuel. Caleb went to bed at 7 and slept until 8:40!

Buddy and I went on a date last night while mom watched the little ones. We tried a little Thai place in town that has really good spring rolls, and then went to a new frozen yogurt shop. It was so nice outside and so nice to spend a little time together without anyone demanding anything of us! The yogurt shop was crowded, so we walked around and tried some chairs Pier 1 had sitting outside their store before we went shopping inside. We only lasted 2 hours and came home. Sad, I know. But I hadn't talked to mom for a while, and Buddy wanted to watch our usual Friday night church service online.

Fun things about C and H. Yesterday, C pulled his chair at the table over beside H's. I had been in between so I could help them both when they needed it. However, he wanted to be by his buddy. This morning while H was eating (C was still sleeping), she had a little teddy bear she'd been given when we 1st got home on the floor by her chair. She told me her bear was crying. She's been carrying it around the last day or 2, which is really amazing, considering she didn't hold anything when she 1st came home. She's been getting on the potty all by herself, with no crying, not even needing me to be in there with her until she's done. It's really cute to hear her say, "Good job, Mommy!" after she's gotten on the potty. Then I wait for the "Mow dah" to tell me she's finished. I wipe and she gets down and tells me, "Good job, Mommy" again. C has picked up on her grunting for communication, which I'm not appreciating very much, so we're trying to teach her a better way to get her point across. One thing we're teaching her is, "May I have it, please?" Which comes out "maya maya pcheese." Cracks the kids up, and C does a funny job immitating her. Yesterday when it was time for C to play in his room, he wanted H in there with him. I usually put the gate up so I can keep him there while I do school with the big kids. However, I didn't so H would feel ok. But, they asked for it to be up. They did well. I'm so glad to hear them playing more than fighting now.

Buddy and S are really enjoying karate! They've done 2 nights and are excited about going back. Buddy is feeling the pain, and Samuel is just enjoying the whole process. Good for them to have time together in such a manly way.

Time to go collect big kids and get on with our day. I'm hoping to hit the farmers' market this morning, then a fishing party with the scouts this afternoon. I'm sure we'll call it a day a little earlier, since I'm sure both big ones didn't get much sleep!

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Found the camera!

This is how Catherine did some of her school work today. I think she had 3 dress up outfits on before I called an end to it. Yes, that is Caleb. Girl dress up clothes are just more fun, or maybe we need to go find some better boy dress up stuff.
C was leading the races between the boys. Little C's lead kept getting bigger and bigger, but S could always beat him. They had a blast! There he is, all serious about his racing. He's growing into a man!
After a bit of squabbling when we got home on Monday, this is what Caleb did with Hannah.
It's fun to see them playing together more and more in nice ways. Caleb shows her how to do things and she helps him when she can. A friend gave this salon to us for the girls way back when. So glad we didn't get rid of it while we waited. It was a great source of entertainment while we cleaned the car on Sunday. Hannah thought she was something with Catherine's sunglasses and Caleb's hat. (We were cleaning the car to get it ready to be sold, so those yucky mats HAD to get cleaned.)

Caleb was so excited to have his lunch box! He hardly could leave it alone on Sunday. I'll remember next week to keep it out of sight! I forgot to have a show and tell item for his class, but he was fine because he got to show what was inside the lunch box.
In true form, I forgot to bring my camera to the first day of CC, which stands for Classical Conversations. It's not a drop off and it has a "community" feel. I tutor for the 5-7 year old girls, who are amazingly sweet. 2 of the girls never gave a presentation last year. (Every week they have a topic they are given the option of talking about in front of the class for 2 minutes.) This week, they both did. One was really short, but the fact she was brave enough to do it was really big. Hannah did well while she was with us. She wanted to be a part of everything the rest of the girls did, even though she had no idea what it was all about. We do science experiments every week and a fine arts project. This week, we had to go outside for science, which meant a trip on the elevator! Of course, everyone wants to push the buttons, so we now have to go with an alphabetical order system so everyone gets her turn. Our class is on the 2nd floor, so going to class, coming down for lunch, and science that's outside and occasionally art as well, will now mean using the elevator. Lots of oportunities for good times. When we were done with our work, we had some time before lunch. We sat around and the girls asked questions about Hannah- why her hands are like that, why her mom didn't take care of her, and the amazement that she walks on her ankles! She showed them how we sign Jesus Loves Me, and really enjoyed the attention!
After lunch, I was in charge of 8 little ones for 2 hours while their moms got to go into the Essentials class. There was another mom, whose children are taking art and music, who stayed with me for part of it, then after a while another mom popped in for a bit. Nice not to be alone with all of them in a small nursery room!
All in all, it was a good day, but I did miss sitting with my friends in EEL and our time after when the older kids had art. However, it's our new normal and it will be great.
Everyone was tired and a little touchy for a bit when we got home, so we sat down and read about Charlemagne and Henry VIII to allow for a little down time. So nice not to have dance and scouts on Mondays. This year, it's just scouts. Samuel has 3 badges to complete until he's earned every badge possible for Webelos! He only has a few things to do on each, so it should be a pretty quick process. Then, it's meeting new troops to decide where to go as a Boy Scout. After February, when he is a Boy Scout and we can drop him off!
Buddy and I made a deal that since he and Samuel are doing Karate on Thursdays, I'd take Samuel to Scouts. That way, each of us have an evening with Catherine. So far, so good.
Yesterday was a beautiful homeschooling Tuesday, compared to some in the past. Maybe the Omega 3's are kicking in and helping things be more peaceful...
As we were eating dinner, Catherine had to tell Buddy how she hadn't chewed her fingernails and only popped her knuckle once that day. Samuel said he hadn't picked his nose all day, and Caleb said, "I didn't eat any bergers today." Samuel piped up, "It's true! He did pick his nose, but he wiped it on a kleenex."
Today, I'm trying to get back into the swing of butter making, bread baking, yard work and laundry. While doing homeschool and my version of PT with Hannah. Think I'm taking on too much? It's after 4 and I'm just now done with a shower and feel like I could hit the hay. That may have something to do with staying up to watch Pride and Prejudice and get to the next part of my knitting directions...
I do have some pictures, but the camera is ...

Monday, August 23, 2010

Back packs packed, teeth brushed, lunches made, all my stuff together (I think) and we're off to CC! "Is it time to see my friend Joe?" This makes Caleb very happy. Hannah just wonders why she was rushed through breakfast.
Just think, 5 weeks ago, the big adventure for Hannah was riding on the plane and meeting her new family. Now, she's getting ready to have a new adventure with a bunch of people, learning to sit quietly while I tutor, and making new friends.
I'll post pictures when I get home.

Friday, August 20, 2010

So, yesterday started with music class, proceeded to a very ugly melt down by one, followed by a chiming in just because, and a 3rd feeling the need to make his voice heard. Thankfully, the eldest held it together for me. The first mentioned child and I had some quality come to Jesus moments that really helped shift the day into much better directions. During nap time, Caleb decided to eat the toothpaste instead of sleeping. Thankfully, it's totally herbal and wouldn't hurt anything except the bacteria in our mouths. It sure was strong, and he didn't like the taste at all. I thought he was going to toss his lunch. Made me wonder how well he chews.... Anyway, it never happend, PTL.
Mom gave us a picture book for Hannah, and I was using it to teach her some signs. Caleb and she sat on the couch after "naps" were finished. It was so sweet to hear him telling her what the pictures were and doing signs for them. After their reading time was up, they each took turns sitting in a little chair. Samuel really wanted a hair cut before CC starts (and before karate class, I think) so I took our stool out onto the back porch, since I'd just scrubbed floors. It sounded like a great idea, but turned out to be really warm! Caleb jumped on the trampoline while Hannah played in the sand table. "Short, mom." That's S's favorite request. Lately, it's all about whether his hair is sticking up, and taking scissors himself to remedy the situation. Then Caleb wanted his cut. Then Catherine wanted hers cut short. Hannah watched all this and soon she was asking for her turn, too. Look back at that 2nd picture of her and you can see what had to happen. It looks better when it's combed, I promise. Everyone was pleased with the results. Caleb was a little clown, as usual, and it took quite a few shots to get this one.
All that before we were to leave for my mtg and the boys' karate class. Pizza to the rescue! Bad mom, I know, but you gotta do what you gotta do.
I had a great time being with my friends again. So thankful to feel the love and support again. Funny how I missed it over the summer! Thanks for the offer of chocolate, Leslie, but I'll have to decline. You do want P to learn something, don't you?
The boys had a blast, and Samuel got to see several people he didn't expect to see also in the class. He was a little nervous about going, but it turned out really well. They were both sore today, but Samuel was pumped about it all. I don't recall it ever being that way in TKD, so this is a good sign. I was thankful mom could watch the younger ones so I could stay a little longer and chat.
Another day today with all the colors of the rainbow in our day, so we'll be doing some school work tomorrow. We ended by watching some Drive Thru History and putting the little ones to bed. After that, Catherine put together an obstacle course and we timed each other while we ran the race. I won. By 25 seconds. Good way to end the day.
Looking forward to a nice weekend. No plans, just time together, which is just fine with me.

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Caleb got the camera yesterday and this is what he found.
Really? 4 days? Well, life has been full and then not so much to blog about. We've had some interesting days that we'll just file away for now and let time smooth over in our memories. Then we've also had some really nice times that I'm thankful for.

I'm enjoying my kitchen, but have yet to achieve perfect clearness on the counters. See, I'm not the only one who lives here. Enough said.

We've had some hurdles I think we've made some big progress on, even though it was a challenge to gain some victory in. Last night, I think we turned a corner. Probably never share about it, but that's ok.

Hannah is making efforts to walk all over the house. Yesterday, she walked from her bed to the bathroom with no help, then from the bathroom to her chair at the table with no help. Our house isn't big, but that's a huge step. I didn't ask her to, she just did it.

Yesterday, Catherine had music class for the little kids. It was really funny to listen from the other side of the door to their play. When I peaked in, C & H were sitting side by side with their "batons" to direct the orchestra. Hey, they are learning something! When they came out, they each had a little WM bag with their treats for doing such a great job. (I think it was junk C was pawning off on them. One man's trash...) This morning, even before breakfast, they're right back at it. Amazing how C can get them to do what she wants! This is the first time they've done this in weeks. I'm glad to see the fun of our new sibling coming back.
Amazingly, the fun of the year starts back up tonight! Mom's meeting for me, and karate for the big boys. Yes, Buddy is going to pull out the gee he wore probably 20 years ago or more, and have some time with Samuel. For Samuel, who was a brown belt in tae kwon do 2 years ago, this won't be such a stretch, but for the big guy, I'm anticipating the need for some herbal muscle massage! Mom is coming to stay with the other 3, which will be fun for C. As soon as the littles are down, she gets grandma all to herself! Fun all around. Oh, that's right. I'm in a serious meeting, not a fun get together! I wonder if there will be snacks... Actually, it would be best for the new families and the moms in my class if I stay away from any sugar.

Monday starts CC and scouts. Thankfully, dance is on a different night this year, and doesn't start until after Labor Day. I think I'm ready. I'm actually nervous about a new class, even if they are the sweetest, cutest group of girls you ever saw!
OK, time to start the day for real.

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Just so you know, Buddy does granite fabrication for a living, not just a hobby. He's very particular and does an excellent job. For a free estimate, call....
He's such a funny boy... He says he's Bob Beardo.
After he got the granite in, he needed a little help from my dad for the plumbing part. I really like my deeper, bigger sink, but it did make things difficult to reconnect the plumbing. Hannah was really happy to help Dad out, and he didn't mind at all. He's so patient with all his grandkids. It took almost 9 hours to get the kitchen and one bathroom sink, mixed with a delicious dinner mom brought for us, connected again. So thankful for their help. While we were waiting for the boys to come back from yet another trip to Lowe's, the girls worked on our handwork. Catherine is learning to crochet, Mom is working on an afghan for another granddaughter, and I'm still working on Samuel's sweater. So much fun to have that special time. Samuel had a blast working with the guys, problem solving, and being a big help.Catherine wasn't feeling very well when she went to bed, but felt fine this morning. Samuel felt fine when he went to bed, but felt terrible this morning and ended up getting sick. Thankfully, he's feeling much better now.
Now, to bring the house back to normal...

Friday, August 13, 2010

Before and After

Not all done, but much progress was accomplished today. Yay for Buddy! Now we get to enjoy his work everyday. Especially if we learn how to keep the counters clear!

So while we had to be out of the house for 7.5 hours, we went to the park, saw some great friends and met my sweet little class of girls, stopped by to see progress, went to the Urbans for a few hours to play out of the heat and get some lunch. (Thanks!) Picked up hardware and a new faucet, checked on progress, spent more time at the Urban's, came back to get new shoes for C, since hers broke, went to the Library and Big Lots, and came home because we couldn't take it anymore!

Lovely! Our sinks aren't hooked up yet, so it was pizza for dinner. Fine by all. Finishing up what we can tomorrow, and then we'll deal with backsplashes for kitchen and bathroom another weekend.

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Ok, so this did not start out as a stellar morning at our house. First of all, I was just starting school when the phone rang. It was our bank. Had we written a check for over $3k for something we bought off of Craig's List? Well, no, we hadn't. Ok, maybe this is something we need to look into. Came you come by before lunch? Sure, I'll do it. Work some more on school work, load the kids in the car, and away we go.
By the time I got there, over 20 phone calls had come in about the same thing. Checks that were thousands over what the purchase price was, requesting the checks be cashed and the extra sent back to the individual. I'd read about those scams in emails, but never expected to be the brunt of one myself. So thankful they got it taken care of! As we're closing the account and opening a new one, Catherine came from the play/waiting area to tell me Hannah was saying "poo." I was almost done and then we could take care of it. What I forgot was that when she had something messy, she says poo, not when she has to go. Well, she'd already gone while sitting in her stroller, playing with trains. Oh, dear, what do I do now that I'm at the car and ready to go home? Load her in and clean her up at home. I had nothing with me. She didn't seem to be bothered at all.
Home, cleaned up, lunch done, naps started, school finished. Buddy called saying he's going to put granite in our house tomorrow morning. Oh, dear! All you homeschoolers in small houses with multiple kids know that the kitchen table IS the school room and making everything look beautiful is NOT easy in a short period. So, that was what we (I) spent the rest of the day doing. Cleaning up the things that have accumulated in the past few days while we've been productive elsewhere.
I did feel like I was in a one-woman band trying to accomplish something while I had a reader and 3 players, sometimes criers. Yes, at one point, Buddy called to say he was coming home and I had 3 crying at the same time. Catherine had gotten bitten by Caleb, Caleb had gotten pushed by Catherine, and Hannah didn't like it that I said no more strollers in the house!
Thankfully, Buddy came home, the littles went to bed, and we got to see some demolition happen in the kitchen. I'm so excited to see what's to come. The bathroom has had its granite for over 6 years, always in a shop somewhere else. Actually, it was in the garage, but he moved it after a few years so I didn't have to keep seeing it and asking when! We have to be out of the house for a while because of the smell, but it'll be great to come back and be amazed. How nice to have his handiwork where we can see it everyday!
When we were at the shower, we were talking about what to do for Hannah's feet, and Robeez was recommended. I had a gift card to Target and went there while everyone was swimming last night. They have knock offs that I thought I'd give a try. After naps today, I pulled them out and showed her. The kids all helped her: Samuel pushed her hair back so she could see better, Catherine tried to put one on, and Caleb was cheering for her and asking when we'd get him a pair. As soon as she got them on, she stood up and walked to the love seat. Such a happy girl! She cried when I took them off tonight.Fun at the pool.Samuel made found a new use for a popped ball.On the way to Branson. Caleb has "silly hair." Hannah has started referring to herself as "Natia" the past few days, and forgotten the kids' names. Correct family, wrong names. Not sure what that's about, but it's kind of sad to hear. I've also noticed that she's getting stretched mentally when we do new things. Like puzzles. The first day, she had so much fun and kept wanting to do more. The next day, she could hardle do one piece. Yesterday, we sorted foam counting beads by color, but couldn't remember color names . Today, she couldn't figure out where they went, and certainly not their names. So much all at once! So much to take in for a little one who hasn't seen much in her life. It'll only get better. Think of all she's already done. It's really amazing. Funny to see her decide if she wants to do something or it's not worth the effort. Smart cookie. Why do it if someone else will do it for you?

Look for before/after pictures tomorrow!

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

I won't embarrass her by posting a picture, but Hannah told me while we were out running some quick errands that she had to go potty. She called for me to "modi modi" with her, but I purposely didn't to see what she'd do. When I did go check, she was standing up turning on the light. (Thanks to Mr. Knight for teaching her to turn the lights on and off.) I left again and returned to find her at the potty taking down her drawers. She then got on ALL BY HERSELF! No screaming or crying. Just a very pleased smile. That is so huge for her. I just started working on that Monday night, I think, and it has NEVER been a good thing as far as she's concerned. Big corner for her.
She's also learned how to open doors.
Now back to seeing what's causing the crying this time....

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Little things we've learned:
-Hannah is developing empathy for the other 3 kids. When they are in trouble and cry or go off mad about something, she'll say, "Dae Dah!" and whine and go off a little way, too. It's really funny when she does it.
-Hannah really needs to keep her routine. Last night was a blast, but we got home about an hour after her usual bed time. Even with melatonin, she was up for another hour, calling for us and crying.
-Hannah calls Buddy "Daddy" and me "Dae dah." However, if I'm not answering her when she wants, she's started calling me "Mommy."
-Hannah can now get on the big potty with little help. Does she like it? Not so much, but she gain independence and movement, which she really needs.
-She likes puzzles. I was showing her the puzzles I'd gotten at Target last week and she was really interested in them. I showed her the straight sides of the pieces and then the straight sides of the puzzle board to show her what to look for. She'd take the piece and say her version of straight and then put it in backwards. Other pieces she'd take and explain to me about the different shapes, pointing to them, and then attempt to place them. It was neat watching her try. It seemed to tire her hands, but she got the hang of using 2 hands to make it work.
-She can get Samuel to give her a kiss, something he'd never do with Catherine unless forced.

It was so nice to be with the ladies last night! I so enjoyed chatting and hearing about the coming year of CC. Laughter is such good medicine! I was encouraged to take 30 minutes a day for myself, as another friend has been telling me for over a year. I guess I'd better take that advice! Such good friends who, within certain time frames and schedules will do anything they can to help me! ;0)

Rescheduled the SW for tonight, which will be interesting. Looking forward to hearing from her what she thinks about our progress. Going to be a great day, going to do more school with happier hearts!

Monday, August 9, 2010

We did have a great time in Branson this weekend, and we did get pictures, but they are on other people's cameras and on my phone, which I haven't yet figured out how to access.
The car was perfect for the family; lots of room for everyone. Cranky children don't care how much space there is, though, and will be bothered regardless. We went not knowing where we were staying, and ended up being in the manager's suite, which was just right. Hotel rooms are too small for a family of six, the cabins were full, we felt funny invading friends with such a large group, and had originally planned on going with another couple. Now we have a fall back plan for future trips.

Church on Friday night, where we got to see some of the Storments, and both littles fell asleep. Caleb was a sack of potatoes and only woke up to get in the car and then when we changed him into his jammies. Hannah woke up more easily, stayed up longer, and then went to sleep quickly.

Saturday found us enjoying time with the Knights. They blessed us with some toys for Hannah, some gas money, and some dance things for Catherine. We were so thankful!

On to SDC! The stroller was a bit of a bust because of how uneven the weight distribution is and the hills we have to go up and down. Glad to have it, but just hard work maneuvering. We got to see the dog show, which Hannah was not very interested in and fell asleep during, and ride a few rides. I was so thankful it wasn't as hot there as it had been at home. Lots of people, but the lines weren't too bad. Hannah rode the elephants, the tea cups twice, the frogs (which she cried all the way through. I was waiting in the line for the swings with the big kids and couldn't hear anything, but could see her mouth wide open and Buddy trying to help both of the littles. Not sure how Caleb enjoyed it), the lady bugs, and the butterflies. I think she did fine for all those adventurous moments.

We were able to see the Olsons who, are home from Mexico for a while. They were actually some of the first people we told about Hannah, so it was great to share her with them. After a full day of fun, time for dinner, baths and bed. Caleb was ready, but Hannah needed to wind down a bit. The girls were on the couch, which pulled out, Samuel was on the couch cushions on the floor, and Caleb was in his special bed on the closet floor. So glad he can still fit in there!
Church on Sunday, with a late check out so we could get everything together after church. Wanted to meet the Heflins, who live around Springfield, but the sticky note with their number got tossed by the big man, so we weren't able to connect. Happy to know we'll be back and can let them meet Hannah another time.

Everyone was glad to be home, the cats missed us (especially the water they should've gotten before we left), and we were ready to be back to our routine. Hannah woke up crying a few times during the night, one time she had wiggled around in her bed and had gotten out from under her covers. She stopped crying quickly, and went right back to sleep each time. So glad we have some time before we have to start school in earnest, or this would've either been a very emotional day, or a total loss. As it is, I'm glad I put everything away last night, because we're accomplishing very little so far.

The ladies from CC are having a little shower for us tonight. So looking forward to some time with them and to let them meet Hannah!

Friday, August 6, 2010

Got to join the Urbans last night as they welcomed 2 new ones home. Priceless to watch the reunion! Makes me appreciate all those who joined us when we came home.
Heading out to Branson as fast as I can finish this, get everyone to the potty, and hop in the car. Looking forward to a great time.
See you when we get back! I'm sure we'll have great pictures.

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Introducing Black Beauty!

We're so pleased we can finally all get in one vehicle at the same time!
This morning, the kids and I loaded up and went to a Christian school that's closing. All their library books were free! Plus, they had student desks. I ended up getting over 200 books and a bulletin board. Mind you, we drove our little SUV with the double AND single strollers in the back. I was so wishing we had done the car deal before, but it helped me have an even great appreciation for the new. I told my friend Charissa about it, and she went and picked up 2 desks, actually 3, since 1 needs work, for me for $15. (I saw a friend in WalMart tonight who had to buy book shelves to accomodate her books.) I wish it was still going on tomorrow. What an amazing blessing.
After Charissa got back, I went to sign papers, came home and shortly after got the call to come meet the man. Buddy happened to drive by as I was picking up the keys. We ran home, moved the car seats from one vehicle to the other, and went for our first family outing. Swimming at the Y. Only the pool was closed for swim lessons. Back home we went, littles in the little pool; I left and braved 2 parking lots by myself. Kick guards, seat protectors, and floor mats were on the list.
Now, to sell the old car and learn how to park a Suburban in the garage....

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Progress report

Isn't is amazing that 2 weeks ago, I was feeding 4 kids breakfast for the 1st time? Wow! I'm so glad we're all sleeping much better and we're getting into more of a groove. We're having our 1st post placement visit Thursday. Isn't that amazing? Sadly, it's happening right when the Urban's additions are going to be coming home. Big Bummer. I know where'd I'd rather be.

The days are getting better and we had much less conflict today. Did I mention we banned electronics for a week? All in all, a great choice. We're reading Little Britches after the littles are in bed. Good story. Samuel is getting back into Lego building and has fun taking pictures of all his creations. Good thing, too, since someone fell and broke up this masterpiece.
Hannah is doing well. When we came home, I carried her everywhere she wanted to go. I had already turned over the spoon to her, and given her sippie cups. But she wasn't able to wiggle her toes and her fingers only moved at 2 joints. I'm so pleased to say that yesterday, she wiggled all her toes. AND I'm able to move all her fingers at all 3 joints. I've been telling her to pull up her knee pads herself and praising her when she is independent. I know she can do it if I just let her. This morning she pulled her panties and scooter up to her knees, put one sock on all by herself, and pulled on both her knee pads. We were told not to let her walk on her ankles because the Dr. forbid it. However, I was looking at another blog, and the little girl seems to be very similar to Hannah. She's walking around and having a great time. Soooo... One of the fun things about Daddy coming home is that dancing around the living room and getting swung around in circles. Everyone has to have a turn (except S and I). Yesterday while we were dancing around before he came home, she stood up and was walking/dancing around, too. Today she kept walking back and forth by the couch C and I were sitting on. She's doing great, but does get tired out with it. We tried her on the big excercise ball tonight. Not so great, but it'll get better.

She often pouts and flops on the floor when she doesn't get her way, but she's learning that that is not acceptable and if I tell her to get up she will and puts a smile on her face. I know we don't understand everything she says and the rules are different here, but she's adapting very well. I do believe both the homegrown and newbie are doing better everyday.

Enjoying some Daddy time together. Not great of H, but C is such a card!
Buddy got out our little kiddie pool tonight and filled it up. It had been up for a while and need a good scrubbing, which he kindly did while I made dinner. We put the kids in while dinner was still cooking and boy did they have fun. Samuel was too big to get in at first, but soon changed his mind and had fun, too. As soon as Caleb was done eating, he scooted out the door and into the pool! I can see that this was a very timely event- it's too stinking hot to do much else.

Mom gave me a book a while back with kids' foods. Catherine has been looking through and finding some fun things to make. Today she made the bees. Sadly, I didn't have any chocolate chips in the house or slivered almonds. We were able to compromise by getting potato chips for the wings. Very tasty! We'll have to do that again. Imagine 2 chocolate stripes on the backs.

We're getting our new vehicle tomorrow! So excited about it. Just in time for a weekend in Branson. God is soooo good!

Monday, August 2, 2010

Forgot to say...

We found our library book! It had fallen down behind the boys' bunk beds, behind the tubs of blocks and legos.
We got a call from the dance studio this morning saying Catherine was actually placed in the pre-professional class! Very exciting, but had to decline for this year since the time falls too closely to when CC ends. Good news is she'll have the same teacher she's had for the past 2 years, and another year to really get ready for the big time. We're so excited!
Drove a Suburban tonight that blows the socks off anything we've looked at. Praying about it tonight and trusting for the right direction. Great price, great condition, great timing. Stay tuned!
Weekend busyness is over! Really, it was full, and I'm glad to be in the week. "Daddy" got to be Hannah's favorite word for the weekend, which was fun to hear.
Buddy worked Saturday am, and I played ref. We planned to go to swim, but we got visitors instead. Always fun to have friends come by. We decided pizza and a salad and some time together was more important.
We ended up having a family meeting to confront some behaviors we had seen creeping up in the older 2. We know they're great kids, and that they are kids, and that they've been through a lot this past year with Buddy in school, gone, getting ready for our travel and then travel time, and adjusting to a new sibling. What a blessing to have the Word of God to point them to and not just theory. There are eternal reasons we don't live like the rest of the world does. Our future depends on it. Character and trust are mighty strong issues that can't be allowed to slip even a bit.
Sunday was church, lunch at Zio's, and then we were going to go our separate ways to accomplish what needed to be done. Buddy was going to go to Sam's to get veggie and fruit trays for our get together and then take Catherine to her ballet audition. After that, we'd head to our friends' house. I was going to take the other 3 home and put the little ones down for a nap and meet Buddy. However, while we were waiting for our food, Catherine informed us she had her ballet stuff neatly set out on her floor. Change of plans. We inhaled our food, and C and I raced home to change and get her ready to go. Buddy would pay for everything and meet us at home so he could take C to the audition. He didn't make it home and we were running really behind. So, Buddy took 3 kids home and was in charge of naps, and I went to Wallyworld for the veggies and fruit. When we got home, it was time for naps to be over and he looked a little overwhelmed. "Daddy" had been continual, and sleep nonexistant.
Off to The Thomas' house for some fun time with friends. We ended up staying for 4 hours and had fun every moment. I so appreciated them letting us come there. Their house is perfect for groups of people. Plus they have a huge play room, which I am not at all envious of. Hannah discovered scissors and glue sticks and had a blast. See, if she is just shown things, I know she'll pick them up really quickly.
On the way home, we saw a vehicle for sale, so after quick baths and into bed, I called and went to test drive it. Not what we want, but at least we're looking and know we'll find it. I'm supposed to go again today and drive another one. Wish it was all up to Buddy, but I know I have to help out in this way.
I think we overdid it with activity yesterday because there has been a lot of hurt feelings and flopping on the floor over little things. No real naps today, so early to bed, which is fine with all of us. Sleep is a great thing. We have had some much nicer moments today, and I think it's just getting into a rhythm as a family that's bringing that about.
Speaking of moments, this is not one of them and I need to go ref again.