Friday, June 24, 2011

2011 Week 25

Father's Day
Sleeping in (as much as we ever get to around here). Coffee cake and orange julius for breakfast.  Lunch at Texas Roadhouse.  Watching the NASCAR race.  I'm hoping it was exactly what Sam wanted after his extra-long week at work.
With temperatures consistantly in the 90s and lows not making it below 70 it's hard to be outside much.  Every morning this week I've tried to drag the kids out for a walk so they can get expel some energy first thing.  They aren't always happy about it but they do find things to enjoy while we are out.

Also one of the things we enjoy seeing - a sale pending sign means new neighbors and the whole neighborhood looks forward to seeing these. This one is right across the street from our house.

First sleep-over with Kaitlyn's friends in the neighborhood.  It must have been a very exciting event because all 4 kids were bouncing off the walls the ENTIRE time.  The girls didn't fall asleep until close to 1AM.

Friday, June 17, 2011

2011 Week 24

Summer, summer, summer. Lazy days without much planned punctuated by (mostly) fun things here and there. It's pretty hot in NC (90s seems average) so we try to work around that, meaning more time spent inside that we would have in Utah. Still I think we're enjoying it.

(he's faking it. Not a bad actor huh?)

To celebrate school ending (and to get together before both families headed for long vacations back in UT) we had a very fun, 2 day long pool party at Audrey's house. The kids loved the water. Can't wait for them to get the pool here in our neighborhood functional.

Hair bows - our one craft for the weekend. Can't get together with Audrey without doing something crafty!

Came back home and got straight to work on finishing up my last big project in the house - painting the living room! I had the electrician in Friday (and the guys delivering a new dryer because ours conked out ick) wiring the TV (and the outlets for the freezer in the garage) into the wall above the fireplace and after patching the holes I could dive right into it on Monday. Ahhh, it feels so nice to have that off the To Do List.

And our gladiolas are blooming! Well, the first 2 are at least. Pretty.

Friday, June 10, 2011

2011 Week 23

This is my favorite photo for this week (and probably within the last few weeks as well). The woman sitting next to me said "awww" when she saw what I was snapping the photo of.
Friday was Kaitlyn's final awards ceremony and the school had turned it over to each individual classroom to do their own. The kids were sitting on the floor of the classroom when we got there and Kaitlyn immediately spotted Ty and me and came over with big smiles and hugs. She took Tyler with her back to the carpet and spent the whole time with her arm around him. He even held her hand and went with her to the front when the teacher called her name. It only took a few minutes to hand out all the certificates, then everyone had ice cream.

Kaitlyn got the Star Reader, Star Math (her usual) and the Terrific Kid Award (those are only given to 2 children in each class each grading period). She was very happy about the Terrific Kid and put on her Tshirt to "surprise" her Dad when he got home.

I took Kaitlyn home with us directly after the awards and not long after that Sam got home and took me to the airport for a quick trip home. Gram had died on Memorial Day and I was headed to Utah for the weekend for her funeral. I'm so glad I went. The funeral itself wasn't a happy occasion, but it was very nice and I was glad to be there for Dad.

The family time during the weekend was unexpected, but a very nice bonus to the weekend. And it was a LOT of family time. I was on NC time still so I was up around 4AM every morning (and incredibly tired the whole time) and with Dad being an early bird too we had a lot of time to talk and do things before anyone else was awake. One morning I just went with him to feed the animals, the second I played cowgirl and helped him herd the bull back to the cattle (and the cattle to the bull when we couldn't get him exactly where Dad wanted him), and the third he took me to see the river (with some of the repairs done from the flooding last year and the high water threatening to do even more flooding soon this year).

Lenore and her family had come up for the weekend (and had picked me up from the airport actually) and Bonnie and Larry were in town too. Sunday morning turned into one giant work party with everyone helping my Dad get the sprinkler lines set up in the fields. They even saddled up a couple of horses and we took turns riding them while we out in the field. It was the first time on a horse for the boys and they couldn't get enough. (side note - what a shock to find out that Eddie is 15 and drove part of the way to Mom's house!) Larry also got his first real time on a horse and Bon said he was talking about buying one by the end of his 3rd ride :) Nick (he's 13) also got to learn how to drive the tractor.

I had purposely not packed my cameras, thinking that funerals weren't a time for me to be thinking of taking photos. But pretty much the entire time there I was wishing for a camera. Spring is such a beautiful time in the mountains and the farm has all kinds of rustic details that I can't wait to capture. I had to be satisfied with a couple quick shots on the camera.

Once back home, I've had a hard time recovering from the trip. I just can't seem to get the sleeping and thus the energy/motivation back on track. So we've been taking it easy and not doing much. Tyler and I went shopping one day with a friend. To entertain himself, Tyler was taking photos from the cart. Lovely huh?

And finally, the last day of school has arrived! Kaitlyn was very happy to be off to the final half-day and had a lot of fun. She can't wait for all the fun summer stuff we've been planning but did tell me just now that she already misses her teacher. Such a cute girl.

Friday, June 3, 2011

2011 Week 22

Memorial Day weekend was a long and busy one for us. Sam got Friday off and we started right in on the last of our yard work. Lots and lots of yard work. On the last trip to Home Depot for supplies the truck decided to go on strike (otherwise known as blowing out a tire). Luckily Sam had gone on that run by himself and the blow out happened at the entrance to our subdivision on his way home. We jacked up the tire, emptied the back and finished our projects then Sam put on the spare and took the truck in for a whole new set of tires.

Here's the finished product - yay! Gravel and weed barrier under the deck, under faucets and any other place we needed weed/erosion control. Fully filled sandbox. New patio for the swing and fire pit. Overseeded with grass, fertilized, bug control, weed control. Finished off the last of what needed to be done on the rain gutters. We are now declaring an end to the yard projects for this year because it's HOT and we've spent enough time and money on them for a while.
We've been dealing with North Carolina rain storms here, some of which hit us in the middle of our yard projects. The storms are strange - you know they're coming because the clouds are out all day but there's no real indication of when it will start raining. But when it does hit, it usually hits pretty hard and just pounds down for a good 15-30 min. The yard instantly turns into a giant puddle and the rain gutters overflow. Plenty of thunder and lightning. It's actually pretty fun to watch. Then it tapers off and once the sun comes out the puddles dry up in no time.

(this one is just because he's cute)

Though it was really too hot to build a fire, Kaitlyn had been asking and asking to roast hot dogs and marshmallows. And when the weather forecast showed no signs of a cool day, we picked the best one we could and built the fire anyway. It was hot and we had plenty of flies for visitors. But Kaitlyn sure was happy and ate like a champ (totally worth it because the days either of our picky eaters gobble up the food are days that make us very happy). Tyler was into it until he had to sit down and eat a hot dog - and totally refused. We had a bit of a fight, sending him into his room at one point. But eventually he met our quota for bites of a hot dog, had a banana to fill out the meal, and we let him roast a marshmallow for smores.

Kaitlyn didn't have to wait for hers. She had so much fun roasting her own marshmallows or making us do it that she didn't ever want to stop.

On the final day of our holiday weekend, Memorial Day, we took the kids bowling. What a blast that was, for Tyler in particular. He was in the best mood and happy and chatty and dancing or jumping around the whole time. (Sam took a video of it with his camera, I'll have to see if I can somehow upload that to the blog) He was also a lucky little guy and got at least 2 strikes, bowling entirely by himself. Kaitlyn was having fun but after the first few frames and Tyler's score edging well ahead of her own she got a little down - or a lot down. She wasn't happy. Eventually inspiration struck and I announced that the winner had to buy the losers ice cream (the winner was guaranteed to be Sam, since he bowls weekly). That struck just the right note and Kaitlyn was able to be happy that she wasn't in the winner's seat.

School is winding down. Homework has come to an end (yay!) and you can tell things are being finished up and everyone is kind of marking time. Yesterday was the awards ceremony for the Academic All Stars - Kaitlyn being one of them. They gave the students that were receiving the award matching shirts and had this little parade around the track. They had written their dreams on some cards and attached them to balloons. They had a few of the kids read their dreams (some were funny like the kid who wanted to be a millionaire and own a monkey, some touching like the girl who wanted a cure for cancer because her mother had died from it in January (so sad!), and some were pretty typical like going to college and even a couple that were simply world peace). When I asked Kaitlyn what hers was she said she couldn't remember. At the end of the ceremony the kids released the balloons. Then we all went into the activity room for ice cream.

Have I mentioned how noisy it is around here lately? It's bad. Construction is in full swing. We're told 15 new houses are going into the subdivision as fast as they can get them done. Two of which happen to be directly behind us. The saws and hammering start up before 7AM. (I'd be annoyed and complain if I weren't already awake by then) Then there are the guys that are working on getting the phone lines, cable and internet (yup, we've been without landlines all this time. Now that we've managed without them though I doubt we'll bother to sign up for now). Add in the cement trucks and the delivery vans and the tractors and the landscapers out mowing the lawns on all the empty lots... It's a lot of noise.