Sunday, February 22, 2009

Weekend Fun

This weekend, the weather was beautiful. I spend quite a bit of time looking back over our blog at what the kids looked like this time last year. It's so cute to see how much they've grown.

After church this weekend, we went to feed the ducks at the park.

Joshua was looking on the map to decide where the best place would be to feed the ducks. He's quite the little planner.



Megan decided to eat the bread instead of feeding it to the ducks.
This morning, we got up early to join our church's walking group, Witness 4 Fitness. We met a few friendly faces for some good morning salutations and then we hit the trail at our own pace. We walked down to one of the parks and played for quite a while. Then after probably about an hour, we walked back home. I was afraid that if the kids got too tired playing, it would be a rough walk home!
The kids had a blast at the park.
Megan found a spider's web and was so excited to share her discovery with Joshua.
After returning home to clean up a bit, the kids and I were off again to run some afternoon errands. We had lunch at the Lakeside Cafe at the hospital. The kids really enjoyed their blueberry pancakes. It's so nice to eat outside by the water. After finishing their lunch, we wandered over to the hospital's helicopter pad where we briefly met two of the flight nurses.



Then we drove over to OJA, the other school in our area associated with our church. Their open house was cowboy style and really cute. I guess I misunderstood the term "open house" and was thinking it was just a stop in and look around kind of deal. Instead it actually started at 1pm and was a pretty structured program. I didn't really want to spend the afternoon at the school because I still needed to get to the grocery store and because we are still 99% certain we are returning to homeschooling next year (but we are still weighing all of our options). So we met a few nice teachers and enjoyed the visit to the classrooms (which are easily two times bigger than the kids' current classrooms and filled with wonderfully age-appropriate toys and books, not to mention the play area that was segregated for big kids/little kids and NO SAND! - The sand at FLEC is the bane of my existence.) Overall, the school was fantastic. But again, we're fairly certain we are homeschooling again next year. I just wanted to check out all of our options, in the event that something unforseen happens and we are unable to homeschool. I'm not all together unhappy with the school the kids are in now. Keith and I both strongly feel the urge to bring the kids back home for at least a year and then perhaps we can take another look at returning to FLEC (or OJA).

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Happy Valentine's Day!

The kids all had Valentine's Day celebrations in their classes this week. Joshua brought in Transformer valentines that had pencils attached to them. Megan picked out Disney Princess valentines. Her valentines came with tattoos in the box, and I struggled with sending them to the class or not. In the end, for a multitude of reasons that might seem silly, I decided to toss the tattoos, and just send in the little cards. Megan didn't even know the tattoos were in there, and I'm not even sure if she knows what a tattoo is anyway. Daniel picked out some Lightening McQueen cards to bring into his class. Daniel was also assigned to bring some fruit in for his class party, so we made a yummy fruit salad of strawberries, blackberries and blueberries.

This morning it was just me and the three kids at church. It seemed like everyone wanted to sit on me all at the same time. I finally ended up with Megan on my lap, which upset Daniel greatly. He does not like to share me. Joshua was absolutely adorable today. The children's story was about a heroic rescue from a fire. During the story, Pastor Morris picked up Joshua and put Joshua over his shoulder in a firefighter-type carry. Joshua was just giggling away. He's such a fun little guy, I'm so lucky he's mine.

Today we had pot-luck after church. The kids and I had such a good time with good friends. And we had lots of yummy food.

The potluck theme was Italian. We brought in a baked spinach ravioli dish and chocolate cup cakes. While the ravioli dish was warming, I was in my fridge getting a drink and I realized I had an absurdly large amount of crescent rolls, so I tossed a few packages into the oven to bring up to the church. You can never have too much food at potluck, right?

Daniel was thrilled to be able to just PLAY in the Cradle Roll room. He has claimed the airplanes for himself. We finally came home from church around 3:30pm. Then we played outside until it was too dark to see each other anymore. When we came inside the kids washed up, then Joshua read to the little kids about Zaccheaus while I chopped up some apples.

Now all the little ones are finally in bed. I've got an exciting Valentine's evening ahead of me - Sleepless in Seattle is on TV and there is a mountain of laundry waiting to go into the washing machine. Keith will be here in the morning, and I don't want to have to do a bunch of chores during the little bit of time we get to spend together.



Castle of my Heart - song

video

I uploaded this video to Facebook and forgot to put it here in the blog. Sing along - I'm sure most of you know the song. :)

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Castle of my Heart

This morning, Joshua's Kindergarten class had a Castle of My Heart banquet. I'm fortunate to have a flexible job that allowed me to take some time off of work this morning to go to the kids' school for a few hours.


Each of the "knights" escorted a "lady" into the banquet hall and sat her at the beautifully decorated table.

While the kids were seated quietly, Pastor McCoy did a special worship with the kids. Then the knights and ladies gathered around the piano to sing some songs. At this point, Joshua was hot and tired, but enjoyed being able to sing with a sword and shield.


The food was fantastic. Our classroom always has a good variety of foods when it's potluck time. After eating brunch, the teacher pulled out some materials to make a craft. I took one look at the sugar cubes, gummy candies and tubs of frosting and raised an eyebrow. Susan (Joshua's teacher) laughed and assured me that the kids won't be eating any of the candy, as I seem to have a reputation as the "junk food police" now.


Joshua made a fantastic castle. He made windows and stairs. Joshua didn't eat any of the candy or frosting.

Monday, February 9, 2009

Info from the allergist

Joshua had an appointment scheduled for next week to see a pediatric allergist. The problem is that our military insurance covers this allergist, by my hospital insurance does not. In a few months, we won't have the military insurance anymore. So I cancelled the appointment with the allergist because this office is very difficult to work with - they only do new patient appointments between 10am and 2pm and only Tuesday through Thursday. That just isn't going to work with my schedule for the next month or so because of some stuff at work that requires my presence. Along with the new patient paperwork that came last week (that I finally got a chance to read tonight when I was looking for the number to cancel the appointment), was some great handouts with a list of foods to avoid until after allergy testing. We'll probably have the allergy testing in April with the allergist that my insurance will cover. But in the meantime, Joshua is just exhausted...his eyes are so dark, his nose runs like a faucet, he coughs non-stop all the time (especially at night) and he's so weepy. I just wish I could make it all better. Since I don't have a magic wand, the next best thing is to follow the list of foods to avoid until our appointment in April.

So for now, he is to avoid -

Milk
Eggs
Peanuts
Tree Nuts
Fish
Shellfish
Soy
Wheat
Gluten
Citrus
Corn

We've been fairly successful at avoiding any MSG (otherwise known as "natural flavoring" - how deceptive is that - I'm starting to really dislike the FDA in our country.)

We also try to avoid artificial colorings. I can clearly remember having a little boy spend the night at our house about 3 or 4 years ago and his mom going crazy on me for letting him brush his teeth with Joshua's blue sparkly Spiderman toothpaste. I seriously thought she had gone off the deep end and had gotten a little too crunchy. Yup, now I'm that mom. No food colorings here, and the school thinks I'm crazy.

We've been learning about hidden HFCS (high fructose corn syrup) and finding it lurking in weird places.

*Sigh* Joshua's a champ and now knows that he is absolutely under no circumstances allowed to eat anything that is not in his lunchbox.

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Wrapping up January

It's really hard for me to believe that January has come and gone and it is now time for a new month. We've been so busy around here that the days are just flying by.

With me now working full time, I've had to recruit some helpers for dinner time. Joshua really enjoys anything that keeps his hands busy. He really likes the old fashioned juicer. He also likes being the dumper for any ingredients going into the KitchenAid, and scooping things like flour and sugar.
Keith was only home for a handful of days in the month of January. We all loved every minute of it. Joshua and Keith got some good games of Around the World in out there on the driveway.

Joshua told us all about a science experiment he learned about this past summer at Goal camp. So we talked Grandpa into helping us learn about what happens when Diet Coke and Mentos mints mix. My pictures came out terribly blurry because of the Diet Coke shooting in the air. We'll try this again when Daddy is home, and we'll video it. Joshua thinks it's the coolest thing ever. Grandpa was pretty funny, I'm pretty sure he wasn't expecting the Diet Coke to shoot out of the bottle.This past weekend, our church had a health fair. The kids and I went to check it out. In the past, Daniel would not have anything to do with any kind of bouncy house. He's not a big fan of unstable surfaces. Going to daycare now has really brought him out of his shell. Megan offered to hold his hand if he went into the bounce house with her and so he finally went. It was so sweet to watch Megan mothering him along.