Thursday, April 21, 2016

Cute Freddy and spring weather love

Frederick loves his blanket and prefers to have it with him a lot of the time. Mostly I make him leave it in the house but sometimes I let him have it outside. Sometimes we even bring it to church. I'm fairly inconsistent with it and I know thats frowned upon. I guess I'm guilty of the whole 'leniency with the youngest child' thing, which I never wanted to do. But for now it just seems like its really not a big deal... I have to save my energy for other battles. 

Recently the kids thought it would be funny to dress up in opposite gender clothes. So Alec came down wearing one of Gwen's princess costumes, Gwen was in some of Charlie's school clothes and Freddy had on a princess dress. Charlie was wearing some super-hero costume... as always. For the next week or two Frederick LOVES to wear that "pin-cess" dress. I got some pictures of him dancing for baby Adalynne in it - which she loved. If Frederick is in the room, she HAS to be looking at him and will stay facing the same direction if he moves out of her line of sight, until he moves back into it. So cute.

With all the kids preferring to ride the bike just up from theirs (Charlie likes Alec's and Gwen likes Charlie's) we thought we'd try out Freddy on the balance bike. He likes it and does it pretty well....mostly just walking along but I'm sure it won't be too much longer before he's pushing off the ground with both feet. 

The weather has been GORGEOUS recently. When we come home from school most days this week we won't even make it inside the house until dinner time. The kids have really enjoyed swinging on the rope swing and putting out cones and making a baseball diamond and playing t-ball, or baseball all together. We are soooo grateful for our new playground/bball court/yard set up.  This is the perfect time of year for Mississippi... the bugs aren't out and its not super humid or hot yet.  We even come back out after dinner and let the kids stay up later than bedtime to watch the clouds and play on the playground.

One of the kids (I won't mention any names but it rhymes with Barlie) thought that the line of bare dirt in our beauty-bark bed where the rain comes off the roof needed some grass seeds and planted thousands of seeds there. Welp, his few minutes of fun have really made a mess of weeds/grass where we don't want them. I'm trying to train the kids to enjoy weeding.... so far only Freddy has caught the bug and I'm pretty sure its only because he gets to huck the grass clump into the yard after he pulls it. 

Theres just something about seeing Chris in work boots out in the yard. MmmmmMMm. 

On one of our last days watching baby Adalynn we went for a walk and found a turtle!

Wednesday, April 13, 2016

Vet school open house and General Conference

We have friends that go to or work at the Vet school on campus and we've heard a lot about it... including that its a really good vet school. They have an open house every year that sounds so fun and this year we went for a few hours on Saturday before the first session of General Conference. The buildings are big and the classrooms seemed so nice. Its like a university meets a farm, but heavier on the university side.... which I guess is exactly what a vet school was so i'm not sure what I was expecting.  We saw a cow painted  with where internal organs are and it even have a hole with access to the stomach permanently in its side. Which sounds painful and gross, but didn't seem to bother him at all. I guess its really useful for research harvesting enzymes to help other cows? Not sure I understand it correctly. 

Then we saw an animal show where some dogs and cats were dressed up like dinosaurs because the theme was 'Jurassic Bark'. They brought out a snack and a tarantula too and we could hold and pet the animals after the show. We totally didn't even stick around to see the tarantula up close... seeing it on stage was close enough for me! Then they had some stations set up in the hallway where the kids could put on lab coats and 'dissect' a dinosaur, or dig for animal bones in a sandbox, etc.  They had an agility dog show course set up outside and we watched some dogs do that from little tiny ones to big ones. That was pretty cool. Then Chris had to go set up for General Conference at the church so I stuck around a bit more with the kids to visit the petting zoo and see the skeletons.

Even though I tried to have everything set up for Conference before we left, it was still too crazy for my preference during the first speaker, but thanks to the Missionaries for being willing to stay at the church during the session, Chris was able to come home and watch the sessions with us at home. So nice. This year I didn't do much prep and I tried to stay away from anything that made me have to hand out stuff mid-talks. We had a 10 or so brown paper bags with a new snack or activity (like beads and string, stickers, stencils) that we could open 1 up after every other talk or so.  This worked well for the first two sessions, but I needed to find something different for the second day to keep the kids engaged. I'm trying to find the balance between simplifying and encouraging kids to listen... and trying to focus myself on listening.  Not sure I found it yet. 

I loved soo many of the talks and kept thinking, 'oh, this will be a good one to study!' I really learn the best when I can read the words and write about applying them.  Elder Holland totally had me in tears at the end as I felt both so happy with having basked in spiritual light for so much of the weekend, but also a bit overwhelmed with ways I can do better, with the crazy state of the house, and with the amount of junk I ate, I really wasn't looking forward to Monday.. when I have to clean up/recover and actually change habits. I love thinking about and planning to be better but actually making the changes is hard. This time Chris and I are reinstating (its been YEARS AND YEARS since this was regular) our couple morning and nightly prayers, -- my favorite thing about this one is that it was Chris' idea, and mainly his efforts that are making it happen(!). Personally, I'm going to try and not waste so much time on things that don't matter, like following social media multiple times a day and watching TV shows at night. Its not going to be 'fun' but I will feel so much better and maybe not have so many 'blah' feelings about life.

Monday, April 4, 2016

Spring showers

We've had ALOT of rain this spring which means we've had good chances to find any drainage issues in our backyard. For the most part, our new set up out back is awesome (!!) but we do have one or two places that need attention. With all the rain, our grass is starting to get all green and the flowers are popping up and I can even see blossoms on some trees. I love spring. We've had a few tornado watches and the kids have gotten out of school a few hours early on a couple of days, but most of the bad parts of the storms have gone either just barely NorthWest or SouthEast of us.

In other ways we've been showered with extra cuteness the past month as I've babysat a little 2-3 month old girl Monday-Friday mornings from 8-12 for Chris' coworker's coworker. :) Its been a good trial for time management when I start my preschool up next fall and for us dreaming about a possible baby #5.  Baby Adalynn loves to watch Freddy and he gets  a big kick out of her attention. 

Look at this cute face! She's such a good baby.