Week in Review

Meals for the week

  • Chicken burritos
  • Braised chicken with carrots and rice
  • Salisbury steak with mushroom gravy, potatoes au gratin, corn on the cob
  • Apple pancakes, sausage, bacon, scrambled cheese eggs, fresh fruit
  • Turkey breast, mashed potatoes, stuffing, broccoli
  • Chicken sausage and mushroom calzones
  • Thanksgiving sandwiches, fresh fruit

Eye Towards Rhythm

Circle time was re-established!  We sang the “Good Morning” song, “Where is Thumb-kin,” and the “ABC” song.  We marched counting by ones and talked about the day, season, and weather. We then read from my favorite childhood  book, The Grosset Treasury of Nursery Rhymes, which includes poetry from Robert Louis Stevenson, The Three Little Kittens, The House That Jack Built, and Here We Go Round the Mulberry Bush, along with popular nursery rhymes.  It’s the same book that my mom read to me, minus the back cover.  This book has seen better days and is well used and adored!

We had a couple of activities this week.  I was able to spend time in the kitchen baking one-on-one with each child, which was wonderful!  Jackson helped me to make the dough for monkey bread.  Alex did the dipping of dough balls and helped to make some chocolate chip cookies.  Izzy helped with dinner each night by taking her seat on the counter in the corner next to the sink.  She loves to smell the various cooking herbs and spices while I chop, stir, cook, and wash.

We also painted twice this week.  While awaiting our watercolor order for school, I bought each child a cheapo set of watercolor cake paints that they’ve been enjoying.

The kids also helped with various chores around the house.  Izzy helped with the sweeping of the kitchen by being on dustpan patrol.  Jackson helped clean out the leaves in the toy shed.  And Alex mopped the entryway for me in addition to his regular jobs.

Handwork

I’ve been working on a hat for Christmas and Alex asked to knit something alongside me.  I wasn’t planning on incorporating handwork back into our days for another week or two, but since opportunity presented itself…

I casted on 20 stitches of white cotton yarn and passed it to Alex, who decided to knit up a coaster for daddy’s new bedside table (a Goodwill find for only $9!)  He’s worked on it in the evenings after dinner a few days this past week and is making excellent progress.

Around the House

I’ve been trying to complete a few bigger projects, de-clutter, and get organized.  I’m still trying to stick to my daily room cleaning schedule, but some days go better than others:

Monday – Kitchen – swept, mopped, sink and counters got a thorough scrub.

Tuesday – Bathrooms – James re-caulked the toilet, mopped, and normal weekly clean.

Wednesday – Bedrooms – I cleaned out our closet and Izzy’s armoire!  Boys’ closet still needs done.

Thursday – Open (This will be our homeschooling co-op day, which takes up most of the day.) – I worked outside on the toy shed.

Friday – Living room and playroom – Hoping to work on de-cluttering a bit.

For the Weekend

It’s finally going to start feeling like summertime around here and heat up into the 90s!  We’ll probably spend some time splashing in the kiddie pool.  Maybe a trip to the splash park will be order too?

We can’t put off looking for a minivan much longer with the baby due to arrive in as early as 8 weeks, so I’m hoping we start our search.  Even if we only look at one vehicle, it’s a start. 😉

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Sprinkler!

It felt a little more like summer here this weekend when we hooked up the sprinkler for the kids and roasted some marshmallows over the fire.  I won’t mention the big old thunderstorm that blew in as I was roasting the last one and got me a wee bit wet.

The boys positively adored the sprinkler.  Izzy wasn’t so sure of it and kept her distance.

Sprinkler Sprinkler 2 Sprinkler Jackson Alex Sprinkler


Slowing Down

I was really getting into a good household chore rhythm over the past few weeks and making good headway on spring cleaning and de-cluttering as well until… I threw out my back on Sunday trying to roll my pregnant-self over in bed.  It just sounds pathetic, doesn’t it!?  I could hardly stand, walk, or sit on Monday and was bed-ridden all day.

Well, nothing like a forced resting period and being dependent on everyone else for a change.  James changed his work plans around for the week so he can mostly work from home to help out.  Alex has been so awesome helping out with the little kids and doing extra chores around the house all without being asked to do any of it.  He even requested to be in charge of making dinner tonight and wanting to sweep and mop the kitchen later on.

Jackson and Izzy are helping out too.  Izzy is great at dragging clothes baskets full of laundry and picking things up off the floor and who knew that Jackson could be so efficient at picking up the living room when bribed with a cereal box toy!?

Thankfully, I was able to quickly get in to see my wonderful doctor on Tuesday morning.  He did some cupping on my back, which I so highly recommend should you throw out your back, and performed a few adjustments.  Seriously, I felt amazing afterwards and could stand up straight again.  The only down side is the lovely round “marks” left on my back created from the suction.  It’s quite funny.

Two and a Half Years

That’s all the separates Izzy and Jackson.  And that’s all that will separate Izzy and our little one due in October.  Three little munchkins and one big kid sound like a lot of work!  There are times that I worry that it’ll be too much and that I must be insane, but then there are moments of such clarity that I know that things will not only be okay, but that things will be so absolutely amazing and great that I’ll not know how to contain the happiness and abundance of blessings that I will feel.

What a Pair!
Smiling Pair

Dynamic Duo

Three Little Monkeys

I took a break from bread-making these past few months.  It was one responsibility that I could give up in order to have more of myself to give to my family in other ways, but yesterday, I felt called back to it… in the form of monkey bread.  If you’ve never had monkey bread, you’re really missing out and need to try it!  It’s a basic bread dough that you cut into small pieces and dip into melted butter and vanilla and then into a cinnamon-sugar-pecan mixture and throw into a tube-shaped pan.  After it’s baked, you can just pinch the bite-size pieces off from the “loaf” and you have all that yummy goodness all at once!

Monkey bread is also the perfect task for my little monkeys.  Each one had a job that they took very seriously, and it took a little bit of effort in assigning the right task to the right child.  Izzy was all about swishing the dough in the butter and didn’t at all mind have her fingers completely saturated in the stuff (surprisingly, there was no way Jack was going to put his fingers in that.)

Monkey Bread

Alex thoroughly coated each dough ball with the cinnamon-sugar-nut mixture and did so with great concentration.

And dear Jackson discovered his calling by tossing each coated piece into the pan with great finesse.

While going to get my camera, I overheard sharing of dreams of the three kids wanting to open up their own bakery together to make monkeybread and other sweet treats to share with the world.

I would have taken pictures of the finished product, but it was too darn good to let sit around.  We devoured the entire thing within minutes of taking it out of the oven.  So much for breakfast this morning, but at least now, we have memories and dreams that can live on a bit longer.

Trouble?

To say that my sweet, big hearted 4-year-old has been a hand-full lately would be an understatement.  He’s ever so independent and free-thinking and has boundless amounts of energy, which are wonderful, wonderful qualities that I aspire him to have as an adult, but it sure does keep me on my toes right now.

He recruits his favorite 2-year-old understudy often to test waters and do some of his “dirty” work.  He’s a smart one, this guy!

Trouble

The other day this duo found the hair clips and Jackson decided that he needed to decorate his sister to make her glamorous.  He put every clip he could find in her hair.  And then he discovered a rare bit of makeup, took it and Izzy into the second bathroom and closed the door.  Every mama I know dreads that 5-10 minutes of silence and that seems ever so nice and peaceful until you realize that it’s too good to be true.  Since this mama rarely wears any makeup at all, the kids had no idea what to do with the stuff.  All that was done was a mascara mustache on Jackson, which was pretty darn cute, if I do say so myself.