05 October 2017

Fall Photos 2017

Visiting Parks

Apologies for the terrible, unoriginal title. I struggled to even write an entry this week. My computer hates my iPhone so downloading photos to use for my blog is worse than jumping through 20 hoops. I've tried every trick in my limited book to get my computer to recognize my phone, well, except for restoring to factory settings. I've also felt extra tired and cranky this past week, this is getting tiresome! I did finally see a specialist of sorts, a Dr at a holistic medicine center. Pretty much the same old story, no idea why you are tired, could be you have too many kids...or need to exercise. Getting a blood draw tomorrow just so they can check for disorders like Hashimotos or other thyroid issues.

I am teaching piano lessons again to earn a spot of side money. So far I have one student with 4 others lined up. Add my three kids for a total of 8 piano students. I plan on advertising for a couple more students next week. I'd love to teach a couple homeschoolers during the day.

Last Tuesday evening I dressed up the kids for some fall photos at Riporian Preserve. I am trying to drum up business for Fall Mini Sessions and wanted photos in the same location to advertise. The kids were all good sports and enjoyed the preserve. We want to explore it during fall break next week. Evelyn was freaked out by the mosquitoes, half the time her face was scrunched up and mad. Since it was Tuesday I treated the kids to some Del Tacos ala drive thru. I had a church meeting right after photos so had no time to make dinner.

Evelyn was pleased to have Alta over for a playdate. The girls started off swimming for a bit, playing on the swings, chased with some popsicles outside. They wanted to play dress ups, finding similar crowns, shoes, dresses, rings, and necklaces stretched our limit a bit. I got rid of quite a lot of dress up items. The girls reminded me of the early days Amelia and Ella started playing together...lots of arguing and fighting interspersed with giggles and hugs. Girls must play like this! Evelyn talked about her playdate for several days after, so she must have loved it. She is still going strong with no binky during the day. Wresting the darn binky out of her hands is still quite traumatic. Anytime she gets upset she cries for her binky and uses physical force to tell me how unhappy she is. When she is really upset she calls me poop emoji...well, then...bring it on girl.

The kids and I visited Freestone park last week. We hooked up bikes, bike trailers, packed water and snacks for our short ride. Everett does not have a bike large enough to ride fast enough so he rode in the trailer with Evelyn. Josie rode in the bike seat. That felt a bit precarious with so many kids to haul at once. At the park we visited two of the main playgrounds. The little kids enjoyed the first one more and the older kids seemed to enjoy the larger one better. One girl was blowing bubbles at the larger park, Josie was enthralled with the bubbles. I had dinner mostly made so we stayed until the sun started to set. Phillip was swerving like a maniac on our ride home, he crossed Amelia's path before she could stop. Amelia totally ran over Phillip's back. He survived the ordeal with a set of red tracks on his back and nothing else...except many wounded pride. Amelia was shaking for an hour afterwards, she was totally freaked out by the ordeal. Saturday after General Conference I took the kids for a picnic at Riverside park. Half of Mesa had the same idea! We ate our sandwiches the ran off to play on all the cool structures. The crowning attraction is a large climbing tower. The kids loved the wiggly, bouncy structure. After they got hot the kids begged to get wet at the splash pad area. I had no other clothing or towels, they went in knowing I had nothing dry to wear. So much for the "just get your feet wet" suggestion. Josie cracked me up as she hovered over the small water spouts. She gurgled and shrieked in delight. The kids used the picnic blanket to sop up some of the water. They went back to play in the twilight. By the time we left the kids were only a bit moist. We are planning on a return trip soon, hopefully with Justin this time.

General Conference was quite amazing. We loved all the talks and tried our best to focus through the noise of the smaller kids playing. Amelia did a good job listening while crocheting chains for her friends. We went on a short bike ride around the oval between Saturday sessions. We stopped several times for water breaks. You might think the oval is large, it is less than a mile! Baby steps! Sunday morning we had cousins over for conference crepes while the morning session was conducted. The boys all disappeared outside or upstairs to play. Our grouchy neighbors behind us texted me several times asking for the noise to disappear. The kids ended up soaking wet in PJs, the lure of wading pool water was too much to bear. Justin hung up his hammock. That was the hot item for the next few days. The kids wander outside around 7 am to play on the swings and hammock before school. It is so nice in the mornings now.

Phillip is working very hard to stay dry at night. He has a calendar to mark the days he is wet or dry. He is faithfully keeping track. We made a deal that after he is dry for at least two weeks in a row I would consider getting him a hamster. Monday (the 1st of October) he made it 7 days in a row dry! As an extra incentive we went to the pet store to look at hamsters and cages. He wants to name his hamster "Local." Josie almost jumped out of the cart when we passed the bird cages. She is so animated and excited about new experiences. Last night the 4th he had a night accident. This morning he was so glum in the face. We negotiated that he needs 5 more days after the two week mark to make up for the one wet night. Last night he told me "I'm so glad we are doing this, it teaches me I can do hard things!"

Amelia got to teach the FHE lesson. She confided me that teaching the lesson is her favorite because she gets to boss everyone around! Well, her bossy lesson was amazing. She taught a lesson on prophets and showed a video of President Monson's last conference talk. I made Great-Grandma's lemon ice cream for treat. The kids decorated mini pumpkins with googly eyes, spangles, bats, and pom-poms. Evelyn decided to paint hers so that element joined in the decorations. Just a word on crafts: Evelyn is now the crafting queen. The craft table is a constant mess of construction paper, scissors, white glue, markers, and crayons. Each day she hangs a few new creations on the fridge. I love watching her enjoy a new creative outlet.

The girls got to visit Justin at work on Tuesday. Evelyn insisted on her favorite three pony configuration with three colors of bows. The CD player the van is now not working, after Justin got the screen working again. Josie stuffed something in the player that I cannot retrieve. Evelyn wanted to listened to her favorite songs: shut up and dance, kisses, hands up, and Geronimo. She has the words memorized to all these songs. We made it three times through her play list during the drive to Justin's work. Evelyn loved his office. It's her new favorite place to go. Anything daddy related her is favorite. The clinic I went to was a mile away from Justin's work, the real reason we were in the area.

Mia and Phillip biked to school this week. Amelia loved it, and biked to school the day after as well. She can't bike on orchestra days. We really need to find the boys better bikes to cultivate a new biking hobby! Mia was the first to earn 70 warm fuzzies since we started the program. She chose to get a sausage McMuffin as her reward. She finally got her prize this morning on our way to an early morning student council meeting. Phillip and Everett are really, really close behind her. So proud of all their work.

Josie's new words: banky, dipe-dipe (diaper), cookie, p-lip, water, and thanks.