Thursday, September 30, 2010

Bellewood Acres

Samuel had his first ever field trip today with his preschool. Ellie and I got to come along. We went to Bellewood Acres Apple Farm. When we arrived our tour guide told all of the children that they will be treated like apples that have just been picked off of the tree. They will be taken through the process as if they were apples.

First the apples are picked and put into big crates. From the crates they go to an apple bath and polisher, then from a conveyer belt they are directed to four different sections according to their size. The workers then inspect every apple to decide weather they are pretty enough to be 1st apples, and shipped to the grocery stores or 2nd apples to be sold at the farm. Any of the children who were willing were stickered as 1st apples.

The kids got to try on the picker's carrier although they were swimming in it.

Then we went on a "wagon" ride down into the orchard to see the pickers in action.

Sweet Jeremiah was being a great sport.

Each child got to pick their own apple. I think they were supposed to save them and put them in bags to take home but all of the kids ate them.
At the end of our tour we tasted 4 different apples. Our favorite was still honeycrisp. Jeremiah even tried one. He was pretty upset when April took it away. Sucking on it just didn't cut it for him.
Random tidbits: Did you know that there are 7000 kinds of apples? Bellewood currently has 16 and will have 18 next year.
Did you know it takes 20 years to cultivate a new apple type?
If the weather gets to cold for heaters to be effective they mist the apples enough to create an ice jacket which insulates the apples.

Thursday, September 23, 2010

What is Samuel learning at preschool

The color red, circles, (these he knew pretty well already) crisscross applesauce and friendly hands (sitting still with legs crossed and hands folded), standing in line.

The not so positive items that have started since school started: "na", "cause" as the answer to everything, "that's not fair", "I don't love you anymore mommy" and a few rather curious comments about his private parts. Granted Zach started into a really busy month at the same time that school started and hasn't been around at all. I am still debating whether the good experiences gained outweigh the bad attitudes acquired. Should I have started homeschooling now instead of Kindergarten?

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Samuel's paraphrase of Mops Lesson

There were 1, 2, 3 disciples. They were very good. They drank all of their grape juice. Then one of them died on the cross. Then they were all dead. (insert *gasp*). Then he rose from the dead and they were all alive again. (inser *cheering*)

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Where does he come up with these things

My wonderful mother-in-law took the kids for a few hours on Saturday night so I could join my family at a Dinner Theater. Zach has been working 7 days a week so he couldn't come. She told me this morning that when she was putting Samuel to bed he kept telling her that he didn't want her to leave him. She said that he had his monkey and kitty (his stuffed animals), so he had plenty of company. His response to this was "actually grandma, I need company that has bones." I don't know if I have every explained to him what bones are, but apparently somewhere along the way he picked it up.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Parker Nicholas

This morning at 7am I got the call that my sister in-law Karissa went into labor with her first. So as soon as I could get the kids and I loaded up we headed that way. By the time we got down there Karissa had been rushed into an emergency C-Section. After a long hard labor, which she was proud to announce she managed without pain meds, there were complications. So even though a C-Section was not in the plans, the results were the same.
Parker Nicholas is beautiful and healthy and so is Mommy. For this we are very thankful.

It was a lot of driving and a lot of waiting for the four older cousins. The kids did really well although they started to get a little antsy at times.
I had the privilege to invade on some of Adam and Karissa's first family time to get some pictures. It just melts my heart to see how proud Adam is of his baby boy. And Karissa is obviously completely in love.

Saturday, September 11, 2010

Mommy Insanity

This morning I had both the kids on the potty. Samuel on the toilet and Ellie on the potty chair. I was on the phone with my MIL when Samuel starts freaking out that Ellie flushed the toilet. I keep telling him that it was OK it wasn't a big deal. He was devastated though. Why you ask. Ellie flushed his own pee away when he wanted to flush it. She flushes his pee all the time and it has never bothered him before. I told him he could flush hers but that made him cry all the harder because he wanted to flush his own pee. He starts jumping up and down stomping his feet. (you have to remember he is butt naked) My MIL asks what is going on but I lose it when I start to think about how absurd the entire situation is and am laughing so hard I am crying. Then Samuel climbs up on the potty in an angry huff and starts crying even harder because "he has no more pee left". All this while my MIL is trying to relay that she would like me to be at church early. Only I can't hear her over the escalating drama. I later apologized to my poor traumatized son for laughing, but inside I am still laughing. Aren't you?

Friday, September 10, 2010

Garage Sale was a success ( a little long winded but fun memories)

We had our first garage sale today. (If you don't count the one that was at our church to fund raise for our year in missions). I know it is silly but I was rather intimidated by the idea of having a garage sale. I pushed it off all summer until now when things are pretty soggy. I really wanted my garage back though so I was forced to do it. I lay awake this morning from the time Zach left for work at 530am worrying. I tried desperately to command my mind into quiet submission but it just would not obey. I didn't have a cash box. What do I do with the money? How do I keep my kids in sight at all times with a bunch of strangers milling around? What if nobody comes? I finally gave up and got up. I know I know. There was no need to worry those things were not a problem at all. I kept the bills in my pocket and Samuel would not leave the quarters so I always knew where he was. (almost)

Samuel decided that he was the keeper of the money (coins only by the way) to the point that he asked everyone who came to our garage sale if they would like to have some. He even chased our first customer back to his car to hand him a fist full of quarters he thought the man might like to have.
I tried to make him understand that the people were giving us money and we were giving them our stuff we didn't need anymore. So he started changing his tactic to welcoming them to our garage sale and asking if they had money to give him.

Mom made molasses cookies to sell but we only sold one bag. My kids however were sustained on them for the duration. Bad mom. Especially since I think Ellie has had about 2 cookies in her entire life prior to today. Every time I turned around she had another bag and before we could get it from her she would quickly take a big bite out of one so we couldn't very well return it to the customer pile. Smart girl!!!!
My favorite cookie moment was when she used the bathroom scale to reach the cookies.
I actually had fun in a really weird sort of way. You meet some interesting people. Some serious garage salers:
There are the collectors who showed up before we opened, knew exactly what they were looking for, and tried to haggle me down before I even started. Thank you eBay for educating me on the value of my junk.
There are the collectors who showed up when we opened and were kicking themselves when I said, "sorry the other guy cleaned me out", his response "ooh that Art got here before me again"
There are the serious guys who try to be subtle while they use there little scan guns on all of my media.
There are the foreigners who pretend they can't read a sign posted to a table with numbers on it and give you a quarter of what you are asking. I kind of thought numbers were universal. When you correct it they say "oh but this is OK yeah". Um I have been open for 5 minutes, maybe if you come back at closing.
There are the foreigners who come and actually don't understand. They offer way more than I am asking. I could have taken it but she was so sweet and I felt so bad I gave it to her for half of what I was asking.
There are the elderly who just drop by to tell you a joke and have a conversation. Sweet man.
There are the elderly who come by to buy all kinds of misc. stuff which they pile into their overflowing vehicle, then come back to see what else there is. When spotting a phone she says "oh I don't need another phone I live in a trailer, I don't have any room for more stuff." I glance at her vehicle and the stuff piled to the roof in the back seat from other garage sales and I chuckle, inside of course.
There are the drive by garage salers. We had a lot of those towards the end. It kind of gave me the creeps to be perfectly honest.
The kids did great. I don't know what I was so worried about. They loved all the people and hanging out in the entrance to our garage all day. Samuel had to be reigned in a couple of times for his curious questions and comments. Although inside I am going, "he is almost three and he wants to understand how the world works, that does make me happy"
One time a rather hippyish man with long grey hair came in and Samuel said "you might need to get a haircut soon, my daddy cuts my hair" and then he went right on playing with his quarters. It never crossed his mind that he shouldn't comment on it. The man didn't seem to bothered but he left rather quickly after that. Oooops. Well he could use a hair cut, it's true, but only a three year-old is honest enough to say it, rude as that may have been.
The bulk of our stuff was gone in 2 hours. After that, every time I thought maybe we should quit for the day 2 or 3 cars would pull up and take more stuff. It sprinkled on and off. The first time it quit we started moving the tables out but the second we put them down it started raining again. Eventually we just left it all in the garage.
We came out with $434 for a bunch of stuff that we didn't want. What a blessing.

Thursday, September 9, 2010

1st day of preschool

Even though the plan as of now is to homeschool from Kindergarten we opted to have Samuel go to Preschool at my mom's church. Samuel is very excited about it especially since his best friend Gideon is in his class.

Ellie was not very happy to lose her brother for the day. She kept telling me to "find school, get Sammy" I still haven't figured out our routine yet so it felt a little weird not having Samuel with us. Other than potty training Ellie and the occasional day that our parents took him we have not really been apart like this. I am not sure yet how I really feel about it.

His teachers name is miss Brea, she is really great. Samuel has even made a new friend already, Noah (the girl).
Let's just say I am really glad that our plan is still to homeschool from Kindergarten. That Preschool is only a total of 5 hours a week. And that he is attending preschool at a church I really love.
I wanted to make a special first day of school pancake breakfast but worried about feeding my bouncy son sugar before sending him to someone else. Instead we went to Subway for lunch and Dairy Queen for a sundae to celebrate with Gideon, April and baby Jeremiah.

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Camping at Lake Connor

Zach's schedule has been unpredictable enough that we have only made it down to Lake Connor with the family one other weekend. Zach had to work again this weekend so the kids and I decided to go down anyway.
(one of many potty breaks on the side of the off ramp, ooooh the joys of traveling with a newly potty trained toddler. No wetting the car seat yet. Thank God)

This is the most recent lot that has been added to the family. It is the kids' playground. The boys filled the turtle with gravel off of the lot. Austin was quite upset when Levi dumped some of it back out of the box.
We normally put our kids to bed at a somewhat normal bedtime even when camping. On one of the nights we let them both stay up pretty late for camp fire time. It didn't take much for them to stay entertained. A couple of giant flashlights and they found all sorts of things to do. I love camping with family. Our kids all play so well together. The two younger ones still tend to play around eachother rather than with eachother but this has by far been the easiest year so far to camp. Ellie is no longer eating all the rocks and Samuel entertains himself. Next year there will be two new little ones.
We got rained on a little bit. Between showers we still managed to do a maternity shoot with Kelsie and Karissa. We even spent about an hour in the heated pool before everyone started to get a little blue around the mouth.