What We've Been Up To

Haircuts for all boys.

Peanut butter cookies.  (Recipe here.)

 Visitors from Ireland-my brother and sister-in-law and their son, the cutest little boy ever, Abe.

A little nesting.  (Just a little.)  My friend Jane is recovering my bassinet for me, can't wait.  

Patrick's first t-ball game.  He woke up at 6 a.m. to remind me to wake him up at 7:30 a.m.  Like I could forget.  He's been asking every day since the last practice.

Total bathroom gut.  Love it.  Well not the construction part but the new, easy to clean bathroom part coming soon.  (Don't you like the vintage patriotic wallpaper?)


Ordinary Days

The pool has been used almost every day.

My pretty white hydrangeas I planted last year are in bloom and bigger than ever which makes me happy.

Found this treasure map in the back yard the other day.

A rare rainy day.

No belt-loop weapon storage.

This is me typing fast.  And don't you think my hairstyle is Pinworthy?  Ha!  That's about how it looks every single day. Cringe.  

My favorite house in my little town right now.  The bricks, the hydrangeas, the fence, the light pink geraniums in the flower boxes.  Neat as a pin.  LOVE it all.

 Patrick was mad at me the other morning.  He insisted on wearing his t-ball shirt, which was soaking wet in the washer.  I was leaving for the grocery store and he wanted to go but was being SO stubborn about finding a different shirt.  After several warnings--"You can either get a shirt on right now or stay at home"-- he ran up to find one just as I was walking out the door.  When he came downstairs he was pouty and mad but had put a shirt on.  I said, "Great job.  I LOVE that shark shirt.  You look so nice!"  He said in a crabby voice, "I don't like this shirt. You like sharks?  They're mean you know.  They eat people."   I was trying to change his mood and be all happy, and said, "Yes, I do like sharks!"  He said, giving me a 'teenager' look, "Well I guess you must like dying then!!!", and stomped off to the car.  I had to silently chuckle instead of scold.  He is usually the most agreeable obedient loving little boy---and just like I knew, he was happy and nice 1 minute later...and forgot all about his shirt.   Four year olds are the best.

Matt and I took a drive to the river the other day.  Usually we would just bike there-boy do I miss my summer bike rides.  I think I'd pop the tires if I got on my bike now.  The sunsets are beautiful and I always wish I made an effort to go down and see more of them.  Summer is going so fast!


Pregnancy Update Week #32


Planning Ahead

Nesting-I love it.  For me, more than anything, it doesn't just mean preparing for the actual BABY, but for life WITH a baby-and with five other children.  It seems crazy honestly, but I am thinking ahead to August.  The week I am due, Isaac moves into college, Abbey starts back to high school, and all the littles have school orientation and meet the teacher day.  If I have learned anything being pregnant so many times, I know that preparation is the key.

So this year, as soon as those school supplies show up in Target, (you frequent Target shoppers will let me know right?) I'll be the first in line with my lists.  Meanwhile, I hit Children's Place for uniform shorts and pants.  EVERY darn year I miss their uniforms...they sell out so fast.  This week I called and sure enough they were in-already!  No wonder why I missed them-it's only June for goodness sake.  I dragged the boys for a quick visit one morning and stocked up.  Last year, I waited and waited and ended up paying more than $40 for khakis at the Gap because no one else had the sizes in stock I needed.  I got Children's Place khakis (shorts and pants) for about $11 a pair.  Alleluia!  (This is not an advertisement for CP by the way, I am just loving my deal.)


Summer Memories

(me (I think?), at the neighbor's pool)

Growing up, we were lucky enough to have the nicest backyard neighbors.  Dr. and Mrs. Pastorelle (not sure of the spelling) were their names and they kept up a beautiful piece of property.  They had swans in their  pond that was surrounded by weeping willows, a pool and pool room and tennis courts.  
The pool room had an area that was sectioned off with those long hanging beads-it was a virtual jungle that had parrots and other birds flying around.  How awesome (and 70's-ish) is that?

 In the basement of the main house, they had a Pepsi machine -I'm sure they had a complete bar setup also, a sort of billiards room, but all I remember is Pepsi on tap. We were only inside maybe once or twice...back then it was "kids play outside" ALL the time and we had great fun with their grandchildren and other neighbors.  All I need to go back to those summer days as a kid is a whiff of chlorine, mixed with a smell of a cigarette (I think she smoked?), and just a sip of ice cold Pepsi-it's a combination I just love (really, as much as I hate the smell of cigarettes in every other circumstance and never drink pop) only for the rush of memories.  We played and swam for years and years and years there, even after the property changed hands.

PS.  I love the vintage wind up swing in the back ground and the baby seat...which I am pretty sure doubled as a car seat. Gasp!


Ordinary Days

His favorite job.

His favorite game. (Mine too.)

Not his favorite-two shots.  
I am splitting up the FOUR (what???) shots he needs to get for kindergarten in 2 years, so we did two now.  These would be the first shots he would "remember".  I tried to prepare him.  That means I said they would hurt, but only for a second and then it would be over.  And he didn't even cry one bit, even for the second one.  He just wanted to know how soon he could take those band-aids off.

These two ride these big wheelsall day-race and crash and spin out.  One of the best purchases I've ever made.  I remember by little brothers doing the same-down the big gravely hill, no fear at all. 

Andrew came home like this the last day of school from the carnival.

I am determined to have a beautiful fruit salad like this in my fridge all summer long.

Isaac is back from Ireland and loved every minute of it.  We are heading to college orientation this week and are busy catching up with all that dorm/meal plan paper work.  Oh I hope I can stay on top of this all with the baby coming!  I feel overwhelmed for sure and scared knowing how exhausted I will be in August hugely pregnant-I'm always exhausted in August anyways, after the busy summer with all the kids, without even growing a human being inside me.  I am trying to think of one day or one week at a time this summer and trust that I will have the mental and physical strength for it all!  


Our New Favorite Chocolate Chip Cookie Recipe

1 cup butter
1 cup packed brown sugar
3/4 cup sugar
2 eggs
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
2 2/3 cups all purpose flour
1 1/4 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
1 pkg semi-sweet chocolate chips

In a large bowl cream together butter, sugars, eggs and vanilla.  Add dry ingredients.  Mix well.  Add chocolate chips.  I put the dough in the fridge for about 2 hours.

I wanted to make large cookies, so I used my ice cream scooper to measure and scooped dough onto parchment covered cookie sheets.  I flattened each cookie a little before baking.

Bake at 400 degrees for 8-10 minutes (keep in mind my oven is fast).  Cool before removing from sheets.


Ordinary Days

Someone is learning to ride a bike without training wheels.  Thank goodness for his brother because it's not an easy thing to teach when you have a midriff like the one I possess at the moment.

We are in summer mode around here but two of the kids still have school till next week.  Which means sometimes there is a mad scramble in the morning to get forgotten homework finished before the bus comes.  (And sometimes I forget to pack lunches till the last minute-my mind is on summer mode also!)

Pregnancy brain is real, did you know that? I had to laugh at this one....and run to the store for another pack.

Finally a good book.  It took me awhile to get through this one (The Flight of Gemma Hardy) because of the busy month of May, but I enjoyed it.  I have been striking out like crazy book-wise.  Even went to the book store and found NOTHING.  I realized it's ME, not the book selection.  I am pickier than heck right now-I can't concentrate on anything super deep or detailed, but I abhor fluff.

Matt and Jeff ran in their annual 5K Memorial Day race.  Matt tapped Jeff on the back of his shoulder about halfway through the race when he passed him.  That kid is fast.  Jeff complains of his hip and knee but doesn't he realize he's just getting old? :)

We set up our "bubble" pool.  That's what I call it at least.  We haven't had it up since Patrick was born.  But I asked the kids this year what pool they wanted to join and every single one of them begged us to get this old thing out of the attic and not join anywhere.  That wasn't a hard sell.  I love staying home.  We have a sandbox filled with fluffy new sand, a swing set, the old trampoline, our bubble pool, and a tree house.  
Sounds perfectly perfect to me.