Thursday, April 28, 2016

Dadvent Week 1

Once Ryan started working long hours, the kids started asking about the Dadvent. They remembered how much fun they had with it last year and were quite excited about doing it again! They didn't have to ask for too long, because on the day after St. Patrick's Day they woke up to find out that not only had the leprechaun visited, but the Dadvent had returned, too!

Instead of using our advent calendar for this year's Dadvent, we used the easel in the boys' room. Each day, Ryan would write a little note for the kids on the easel, directing them to their surprise/activity/whatever for the day. He also created what became the Dadvent mascot: Poorly Drawn Pig. Poorly Drawn Pig accompanied almost every (every single?) note and soon became a star with the kids. PDP was sometimes accompanied by a friend, such as horribly drawn horse or terribly drawn t-rex. The kids spent a lot of time imagining what animal Ryan would come up with next :)

Day 1: Nail Polish for Jae and Darth Vader light up keychains for the boys! Everyone was pumped. We've painted Lila's nails many times already.

Day 2: Finish the picture. The boys were confused on this one and at first just duplicated what Ryan drew. When I explained what the poem meant, Asher turned his into an old granny lady (left) and Reed turned his into a girl (right).

Day 3: Space pod! This started out as a pile of cardboard. Ryan found it on sale ages ago and bought it secretly with the Dadvent in mind. He might have been more excited than the kids to build it! Luckily, he gave them the pod on a day he was home (Sunday), so they didn't have to wait long to build it! They all had a fantastic time putting the pod together. Since then, they've had many sleepovers and play sessions inside the pod.

Dadvent Day 4: Sand toys to take on our trip to the beach! Ryan couldn't travel with us but at least he could be there in spirit. Apparently his spirit form is sand toys.

Dadvent Day 5: A new movie (The Tale of Despereaux) to watch in the car while we drove to California!!!

Dadvent Day 6: Since he knew we'd be at the beach, he sent the kids a video of him telling a favorite beach memory. The story had to do with phosphorescent plankton and the kids were entranced. Even Lila was reciting bits of the story to me throughout the day!

Dadvent Day 7: Another new movie (Ryan obviously found a killer deal on movies) to watch on the way home--and good thing, too. Our should-have-been 4.5 hour drive took 8 hours. I'm not joking. Neither is LA traffic.

Wednesday, April 27, 2016

Girls' Weekend

We've started a bit of a tradition where Ryan takes someone on a trip after tax season. Two years ago, we all went to California. Last year, he and Asher went to Colorado. This year, he was going to take Reed on a solo trip to San Diego. Ryan realized that they could go to Legoland while they were there and let Reed decide if they should invite Ashie, too, since they were doing something so cool. Sweet Reeder didn't want Ashie to miss out, so it turned in to a boys' trip! Lila was not even a little bit sad that she was missing Legoland because she was just SO pumped about being girls' team all weekend! She asked if it was the day the boys were leaving for a week solid before their trip, silly girl.

I basically let Lila decide what we'd do all weekend. I was surprised that she didn't want to do anything "big," but was just pumped to do our regular stuff with just the two of us! On Thursday, we went out to a dinner date at IHOP, then to Petco to look at the animals, and finally to McDonald's for ice cream. Lila was so excited to get a "face pancake" at IHOP and is still talking about how awesome that was. She was so silly the entire date and just so jazzed to be out, just the two of us. She chattered nonstop and basked in the joy of having all of mom's attention!

On Friday, we wore our Poorly Drawn Shirts to match the boys from a distance. We wanted to go to the splash pad, but it was insanely windy so we settled on a park trip without water and with a picnic. Despite the wind, we had a really great time. Lila found a ladybug at one point and spent a good 15 minutes watching, oooooohing, and following it. That night, we watched a Dora movie in my bed, then attempted to have a sleepover. After about 20 minutes of her talking, we decided that she should just sleep in her own bed. She was totally sold on going to her own bed, which was a blessing because she'd been talking about having a sleepover all week! 

On Saturday, Lila really wanted to do school--so we did school! After, we went to the splash pad even though it was still windy. I even wore my swimsuit so I could play with Lila. We spent most of our time going through the "hula hoops" (tunnels that really do resemble hula hoops), filling her bucket, using her water squirter, and avoiding getting very wet. It was pretty chilly but she lasted about 1.5 hours before she was ready to go home! That night, Grandma, Grandpa, Ben, and Kayla came into town and took us out to dinner!

On Sunday, we went to church, then played with G, G, B, & K before they headed back to St. George. After they left and Lila napped, we enjoyed some reading time, a short walk, and a little relaxing.

Which brings us to Monday! I needed to spend some time cleaning Monday morning. Once I finished, we played dress up and hide and seek until it was time to head to my knee doctor appointment. Once we got back, we made applesauce bread, then greeted our boys because they were home!

On Monday, I asked Lila if she missed the boys. She told me, "Nope! I is just having so much fun with girls' team!" She loved our little weekend and I did, too. I don't often get one-on-one time with her, so this weekend was really special with us. Her personality is so hilarious and so big for such a small girl that it's fun to just watch her in action. She loved being in charge of what we did. Sometimes, I'd suggest something, then she'd say, "I have something!" and tell me her life-changing idea for what we should do. For the most part, we did what she wanted to and she loved that! I'm so glad I had a weekend with my doll.

Monday, April 25, 2016

Another Falcon

Well, it happened. I registered my second baby for Kindergarten. When we registered Reed for Kindergarten, it seemed impossible that I had a child old enough to be starting school. And now it just feels ridiculous that I'm going to have two in school! 

This past non-school year for Asher has been perfect. I'm so glad we decided to keep him home this year instead of doing preschool. He has generally been engaged and ready to learn when we do school together. His reading has taken off! Because he doesn't have really anything scheduled, he gets to spend a lot of time doing what he chooses--and he generally chooses reading or playing the piano! I have always been a bookworm and it is such a delight to have a child find as much pleasure in reading as I do. He has been reading the Magic Treehouse series of chapter books and just devouring them--he often starts and finishes one in a day. We've started checking out five or six Magic Treehouse books each time we go to the library, because otherwise he is out of books before our weekly library trip comes around! I just love that he loves reading and know that passion for books is something that will serve him well as he grows older. 

I also think that he is ready to go to school. School will definitely be a transition--kindergarten at our school is full-day, five days a week, and that might be a little tough after only doing homeschool preschool this year. We've been talking about the new experiences he will have when he goes to school and he is just excited, which is a blessing after the trepidation he was feeling about going to preschool last year. We'll see if he feels the same way in the fall. Asher says he is most excited to ride the bus with Bub and to do specials. I am so happy he will have Reed at the same school and hope that it is a great year for both of them.

When we signed up for Kinder, I let Asher pick out his very own Forbuss shirt--Reed's kinder Forbuss shirt fits Asher now, but I wanted Asher to have one all his own. He was super pumped about getting a shirt and was even more pumped when they had his favorite color, blue. He put it on immediately, then wanted to pose for a picture by the Falcon (just like Reed did). It was a little bright :)

Saturday, April 23, 2016

March Picture Beast

So the somewhat ironic thing about this post is that when I was working on my 2014 blog book, I was annoyed with myself for posts like this because they are really hard to format into a blog book. But sometimes you've got to do what you've got to do, yo. March was too long ago (22 WHOLE DAYS) to remember details--at least well enough to blog them. So the picture dump with captions will have to suffice. 

We had a garage sale/bake sale with our friends! We are using the money the kids raised at the bake sale to donate to We raised $57, then let the kids choose what animal they wanted to donate! They voted on the "Hope Basket," which is a rabbit and a starter flock of chickens, plus the education and training for the animals' care. The kids were super pumped they raised so much money and also pumped that we let them buy some of the treats they were selling! Next time, we need to make more treats because we ran out quickly!

Every so often, we do what we call "go to town crafting." We get a big pile of supplies--paper, stickers, glitter, etc.--and go to town! The kids love it and it keeps us occupied forever.

One day we were at the park and poor Asher's shorts got caught on something and RIPPED like you wouldn't believe! He tried to play for a bit but he was pretty embarrassed, so we packed up and left. Luckily, we'd already been playing for a while and had already eaten our picnic :)

Lila LOVES her Doc McStuffins kit. Reed doesn't really love to play with Lila's toys. But this one day, he totally played along and they were so cute together!

Lila's doing. I had to laugh.

One morning Asher had a belly ache, so we cuddled up on the couch. Lila isn't okay with someone cuddling with me and her not being involved, so she snuggled up to my other side. I was quite happy :)

Lila drew "Chewbacca." How cute!

I die. His happy/I can't contain myself because I'm laughing so hysterically face is one of my favorites.We were working both adjectives and spelling and he cracked himself up with the sentence he made.

Lila LOVES the driver carts at Smith's and on this particular day a pink driver cart was available. Her day = made.

These next few are from our latest dentist visit. No one had cavities, woohoo! Reed did get sealants put on his molars, which he really wasn't a fan of. Lila and Asher both did better than last time at having x-rays taken. Good work, team!

One day she used her lamb as a pillow, my yoga mat as a bad, and covered herself with the blanket she's dubbed "The Princess Blanket" (because it is pink.)

Ashie has been getting so brave with his climbing!

Lila wants to do anything her boys do. Check out her death glare in the second picture!