Thursday, November 8, 2012

Monday, October 8, 2012

Annette was working on homework in one window and Grayson was watching 'Wheels on the Bus' over and over on Youtube.  I guess even he can only watch it so many times without giving out.

Annette with our new kitten, Sherlock. 

Grayson loves animals, horses being one of his favorites. He calls them "Neighs."  Hannah let him 'ride' this horse that is for her American girl dolls.  He played on it all day! 

I just thought this was a comical picture of this hen.

Annette, or "Neh" as he calls her, was Grayson's sibling-of-the-day the other day (His choice) and they had fun playing on the back porch.  She tied a rope to his car and pulled him around for quite a while. He loved it, of course!

My favorite photos from September

My two littlest boys playing in long grass

The kids working on their treehouse.  Gray just loved licking the socket wrench.  I love those blue eyes and the thigh chubbiness.  Sweet!

He's saying, "HI, MOM!  But what he means is, "Do you see me up here like a big boy?!"

Little Gray playing outside in his jammies.

Max turns 13!

It just doesn't seem possible that our little Max is 13! 
 Max helped me make these pizza cakes for his birthday. 
 They looked pretty great!  Tasted good, too.
Grayson enjoyed his ice cream sandwich. 
 It was even better once we took the paper off. 

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

School starts with groans and ends for the day with happy faces.

 Grooaaannn..... School is starting!  Not the best attitude to start the day.  But it was an easy day and as the kids got into their new books eagerness and good attitudes prevailed.  We studied Mexico for Geography and ended our first school day of the year by making tortillas from scratch!

 Here, Ivy is rolling hers out and Vitali is holding out his tortilla complete with beans, cheese, onions and the (finally!) first of the garden's tomatoes. 
 Looks pretty yummy, doesn't it?!

 Max's turn to make one.  
Look at him rockin' that
 homeschool-sloppy-clothes-didn't-take-a-shower-today-or-recently look.  

This guy did great today.  He has been my biggest challenge in schooling because he learns more slowly and doesn't have the best memory so things are harder for him.  Attitude is everything, though and this morning he was working on a problem and discouragement was getting the better of him.  I stopped, looked him in the eye and reminded him that this attitude never helps and always hurts his learning day.  He thought about it, got a hold of it, and moved on with a better attitude.  Everyone was proud of him for finishing before lunch!  Yea, Max!
We cooked our tortillas on the grill burner because I have an electric stove and thought this might be easier to control the heat with.  It worked great!  Whew!  So nice to end on a happy note.  Now we can look forward to tomorrow.  


 These pictures let you see this beautiful rainbow that we woke up to one morning recently.  They also show the new look on our house!  Not the best pictures of the house because I was really aiming at the rainbow, but you get the idea. 

Here's the house before the construction. That tree fell well before we started work and it blocks the view of the no-garage behind it.  Our house has gone from about 1,100sq ft when we bought it as a foreclosure to about 1,800 sq ft when we finished the basement, and then now is around 3,000sq ft! That's a lot of work!  But we love it.  One of these days I'll post some inside pictures, but don't hold your breath or anything... 

Evening in the Mountains

We went for an evening trip into the mountains again the other day.  Steve wanted to drive the Tail of the Dragon again.  Its this famous stretch of curvy road that winds up a mountain and has, like, a bazillion curves in it. Steve is pretty much the only one in the family who likes this.  But he REALLY likes it!
 And it does have some pretty amazing scenic overlooks along the way for those of us who need to stop and let our eardrums and inner-ear workings recalibrate every once in a while.
 We stopped and spent some time swinging on this oft-repaired rope swing.  Ivy and Vitali were the least fearless swinging out without hesitation and dropping neatly into the water.  Ivy's face was swollen from poison ivy but she was so cheerful that we almost forgot about it--except that the swollen face made her look like someone else.  Never did figure out who she looked like!
 Good job, Ivy!

 Steve and his little guy, Grayson.  Gray loves the water but he didn't get to try the rope swing...maybe in a few years, Gray!

Steve's turn on the rope swing!

He looks like Tarzan--except way better looking!
Vitali takes a swing!  
 And now it is Misha's turn!  He did great!
And this is the boy who screamed for his entire first time in a pool.  
I'm so glad we insisted he learn to like swimming!

 We stopped on the way home for a picnic dinner by the water, complete with more swimming.  The sun was setting and it was a pretty beautiful way to end the evening.  My little puffy-faced Ivy asked me to take this picture of her by the water.  She's such a cutie, puffy face and all.