Sunday, July 24, 2011

First Day of Kindergarten

They day has come...Kindergarten. Eek!

Brooklyn started last Monday at Roger Bacon Academy, a charter school here in Leland. We'd been psyching her up for the previous few weeks, and she only had one little "panic attack". Driving home from Lowe's two days before school started she absolutely flipped. Hysterical sobbing and lots of "I don't want to!"'s. If any of you have read "The Kissing Hand," I took a concept out of there and drew a heart on her wrist for her to look at when she was scared or lonely. Worked like a charm.

And cool, calm and collected momma did pretty well. Except for the week before when thinking about school supplies, school lunches, school uniforms...and freaking out thinking I would be the worst Kindergarten parent in the history of Kindergarten parents. A few sleepless nights, and mornings and lots of midnight crying. At least I got it out of my system before the Big Day though!

She was so excited to get up and going. I went to get a photo of her and Sam said, "I want to be in the picture!!" and I said, "Sam, just wait. Let me get one of Brooklyn by herself." She says, "It's okay Mom, I can share my picture." Awww....they really are best friends.

I went and put my camera away, thinking I would be the only crazy parent with a camera and didn't want to embarrass my kid already. Doh. Every.Parent.There.Had.One. Oh well, at least my good friend Amy had hers.

This is Madison, Brooklyn's best bud since they met when we first moved here. It turned out they ended up in the same class! They sure are cute. She says they play Puppy at recess every day together.

Can you tell Brooklyn was a bit excited? And check out that campus in the background. It is seriously gorgeous. 50 acres of wooded campus. Awesome.

Classroom K-c! Miss Clifton's class!

Sam said at least 5 times before we left the campus, "Brooklyn's not in her chair." or "Brooklyn's not here." Every day this week he's said it less and less, but he says it at least 3 times a day still. It's been pretty nice having some Mommy-Sam time. We haven't had this much together time...ever. So, pretty awesome.

This is one of Sam's backpacks. He loves taking it everywhere. This was Brooklyn's first day of school. We came home and he went and found it and dumped his entire sock and undies drawer into one pocket and then squished as many shirts as he could into the big pocket. And yes, he thinks he's pretty Hot Stuff.

Sam drew me his first recognizable picture--a rocket!

And we do Marbleworks at least once a day, usually more. We also go to the park almost every morning. We take Izzy with us to drop Brooklyn off, then hit the park on the way home while it's cool out. It's a great way to kick off the morning.

I'm not sure who was more excited to pick Brooklyn up--me, Sam, or Izzy (seriously. The dog trashed the house while we were gone, which nearly never happens.). I'm pretty impressed with the drop-off/pick-up routine the school has. It still takes a big chunk of time to do it (they don't have a bus system, so it's an hour of driving time each day! Plus waiting in line...), but I like how fluid it is.

Anyways, the woman in the middle left (blue shirt w/ white dots) is Miss Clifton, bringing Brooklyn to the car. Miss Clifton is fresh out of college, but has Mrs. Brown (turquoise shirt on the far left) who has 9 years of experience at Charter Day to help her out.

Brooklyn was happy to see us too!

Then the kids come home and create this....

Brooklyn seems to enjoy Kindergarten. Every morning she goes right in and gets ready with a "See ya, Mom!" and even told me that instead of walking her in, I could just drop her off. She said the first day she had a bit of a tough time during quiet time, "But I only cried enough to use 2 tissues. I had you hugging me stuck in my head." Awww...

She was pretty stoked about her self-portrait though. She said on the way home, "I got my blue eyes, my school, my uniform, and EVEN my pigtails! I did a pretty good job." Definitely one of my favorites to date.

This week they were asked to put 5 things that represent them in their "Me Bag." Brooklyn chose:
- A book that she'd made from scratch including all of her favorite things to do art with (stamps, paints, markers, etc.)
- Izzy's harness that she likes to play Dogs with
- Chicken feathers
- Squash bugs (and some squash bug eggs) in a jar
-Her paleontology block that she got from her Aunt Corinne for her birthday (since she wants to be a paleontologist)

She was so excited to tell me that the kids said, "Wow!" and "Ewww!" And the thing that she said made her special was "I have my Daddy's eyes." So Russ was able to walk her in the last day and after Brooklyn introduced him to Miss Clifton, Miss Clifton says, "Brooklyn, you're right! You do have your Dad's eyes!" Brooklyn got a bit embarrassed, lol.

She's definitely a bit ahead of the game there, and she says she gets bored, but that she still likes it. I try to give her fun "challenges" like finding out the boy who sits next to her's favorite color. Or what that girl's name was who had all of those cool freckles. Or asking someone new to play Puppy on the playground. Then she comes up with challenges for me like jumping on the trampoline for 15 minutes with them. Pretty fun. All in all, I think Kindergarten is going to be a pretty good thing for everyone.

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

A Trip to Myrtle Beach

The Bodies exhibit was in Myrtle Beach last month. And of course you know how Russ and I feel about our dead stuff! So it's only natural for our kids to love them too.

So we set off, armed with many audio books.

And some crocheting. (I made at least 4 of these hats...none of which turned out the way I wanted. So if you want one, let me know.)

I didn't know they'd put a Wonderworks in Myrtle Beach!! The only time I went I was what...12? However, after we asked the admission price, we decided to keep walking.

Of course you have to feed the toddler-sized fish. Creepy fish...

And take pictures of your Captain Pretzel children.

Bodies was awesome. We got the audio guides and the kids loved those. Russ and I would have loved to have stayed and actually seen more of the stuff, but the kids always wanted to see what was around the corner. They absolutely love the human body though, so they thought it was pretty cool to see the stuff we've been talking about in their books. It was fun to watching things "click" for Brooklyn.

And of course after looking at dissected bodies we were famished. It took forever to get our food though, so we had to entertain the kiddos...and Russ.

Sam and his busted up lip. Sad, but I can't remember what caused it!

We decided we weren't ready to go home yet and after finding some coupons for Wonderworks, Russ talked me into going. This was the was pretty amazing to walk through. EXTREMELY disorienting.

The wind tunnel.

Sam is a pro at getting his photo taken with a shark.

While Brooklyn and I waited to go on the roller-coaster simulation, Russ and Sam were busy doing bubbles. Then we got to join in on the fun and live our 4th Grade Field Trip glory days.

Time for astronaut family photos! Dut looks like a pro.

Sam's looking like he needs to grow into his space suit.

Russ is ready to colonize Mars.

And I'm just fascinated with the shiny fluorescent lights.

Brooklyn and Russ were able to go on this 3-story ropes course. Sam is absolutely distraught that he couldn't go. It really did look awesome...

Brooklyn was amazing. No fear.

Everyone was pooped. We stopped at a grocery store for some dinner and I was awesome and locked my keys in the car. So we got to leisurely eat our dinner in the hot sun with tired children while waiting for AAA to come to our rescue. Woo hoo for AAA! We made it safe and sound after that.

Saturday, July 2, 2011

A Energy-less Day In The Life

NOTE: This Day In The Life (DITL) is approximately 6 WEEKS late. Sad. Very sad. energy-less day. A day without energy. No computers, TV, phone, car, stove, blow dryers...okay, so maybe I went easy with a few things. Yes, I used the refrigerator. Yes, I absolutely used the air conditioner. Obviously, I used the camera. And at the end of the day, I'll admit it...I used a light to fall asleep. Ironic, no?

Without further ado...the morning began about an hour previously, with me being shocked awake by a little boy thudding into my room and yelling, "CAN I HAVE AN APPLE NOW?!?!??!" So--apple for him, vitamins for me.

Brook rolled out of bed and we went straight outside. (Sidenote: It's funny doing this 6 weeks later--oh things have changed! Long sleeves, those flip flops are now broken, more eggs than we're used to these just amazes me how much things change in a short amount of time.)

Everyone was happy to be outside...even Izzy wanted to play.

My therapeutic laundry hanging ritual.

I was giving the garden a little love while Sam played Tarzan. Although I'm not sure that Tarzan ever yelled, "Mom, look at me!" for an hour straight.

This was our biggest tomato at the time...we have now eaten a kazillion tomatoes off these plants, which are now being taken over by the evil squash bugs that we cannot seem to get rid of!!!

Pretty onions going to seed (which are now all gone and have been replaced with squash, watermelon, pumpkins, spinach, peas, parsley, oregano and basil--yes, we had a lot of onions...115+, in fact).

Some of the first peas of the year. I always under-plant peas...we had maybe 10 plants this year and not one of those peas made it into the house. The kids will sit out there and eat every.single.pea. They now do the same with the tomatoes. Seriously, I can't complain. I love it.

We decided to go for a walk. I'd just read a book about how to "farm" on a very small piece of land, or even a rental property and the woman talked about putting your dog to work. Getting them a pack, etc. So I decided to see how Izzy would do w/ a "pack". Yes, that is a towel, yes I got many strange looks from neighbors, and no, she didn't seem to mind it one bit. Hmmm...

Then back inside for breakfast--mmmm...homemade granola (now that the kids are finally warming up to, although I'm not sure it's a good thing or not--we sure go through it fast these days!).

So, we bought our van a few months ago and planned on calling the junk dude guy down the road to see if we could get a couple hundred bucks outta the red car. The thing is...the kids absolutely LOVE playing in it. There are blocks under the tires, the e-brake is on, the battery is dead, it's nice and cool out in the mornings so they don't cook themselves's awesome. They play in there for hours!! So if you're looking for a gift for a 3 or 5 year old who already has everything--I highly recommend a junk car! lol.

Having this fig tree has definitely spoiled us--it's awesome for the kids to play in, is so pretty, and has absolutely delicious fruit!

I decided to get to work on all of the dead


At least the kids (all 3 of them) enjoyed it!

B decided to write Grammie a

Much rough-housing ensued.

Until the warriors were starving. Mmmm.

Nap time!!

Crochet goods, a good book (this is the one about the dog pack I mentioned earlier), and a scoop of Nutella. Now that is some quality napping time!

Monkeys wake up and decide they need a fort. And yes, Izzy had to be in it--we discovered that she loves it when you float a sheet/blanket down over the top of her again and again. Funny dog.

Math time! I saw this idea on a blog somewhere--making your own color by number math worksheet. This one is a robot--she loved it so much she often asks for other pictures ("Mom, how about a dolphin jumping out of the water with a big splash this time?").

Kids want to ride bikes down the driveway. I decide my flowers need much attention...

Bath time!....starting to get dark, too.

Daddy's home! I love how he looks as though he's ready to flee...

Dinner in the dark. (Note to self: One tea light sooooo does NOT work for a candlelit dinner)

Finally got a shower after playing all day long!

I chill out while the kids attack Daddy with pillows.

Reading time!

Adult dinner time (which never happens)--yummy sausages from Jones Family Farm!

Candlelit dinner conversation is different. In a good way.

I give it up at about 9pm and decide there is no way I'm going to sleep if I don't get some reading in. I tried candlelight, but it just wasn't doin' it for me. Yes, I'm a cheat. Just don't tell my kids. :P

P.S. Interesting book.