Sunday, November 16, 2014
Monday, November 10, 2014
Life keeps rolling by. My kids are growing up! The kids are doing well in school and definitely have their areas where they shine. I marvel at Shea's reading ability and though he still hates to draw, his writing skills have improved and his little messages he writes on his own in birthday cards are the sweetest! He has almost finished his third piano book and is quite the little performer. I imagine he is wearing on his piano teacher, but also a riot to watch. Liam is enjoying being the oldest in the school, with many leadership opportunities. He has joined a junior youth group with a friend and is branching out doing his own things. Riley is continuing to marvel us with his musical abilities. He has started trombone now, is taking electric guitar lessons, but also plays bass, acoustic, ukelele, and trumpet. He is not afraid, and because he can hit the high notes, he gets all the first trumpet high parts. I just watched his band play 2 songs at school, and it was awesome. He seems to prefer his grade 8 teachers, to his 6/7 ones, and isn't overwhelmed with homework yet. Hard to believe that he's in his last year of middle school!? He keeps us guessing with his up/down mood swings these days! I have started taking more shifts at work again. Two ladies are taking week holidays, so I'm covering both at the hospital and at the care home. It will be a bit of a stress to be working the full weeks, but easier in the sense that it is done in two quick planned weeks, rather than being called in one day a week here and there. My bank account was starting to dwindle, so I figure I'd better get back at er! Two more positions are opening again, so I'll probably do some coverage while those are being filled again (like last year!). Shea and I have a ski seasons pass for our first time ever, and I am excited to try skiing more than three times a year! I may actually improve some? Time to buy some long underwear! In my down time, I've been taking some photos, and keeping up with my running. Here's my latest photo shoot, of my cute little nieces and nephews... (Also growing up right before our eyes.) Their house is coming along nicely, and this week they started framing in the basement! We joined them for lunch yesterday, and as usual, neighbors with a horse (needing riding) dropped by, numerous friends and family came over...yup, it's never a quiet place. Maybe we can convince Luke to build a skating rink out there on their huge land somewhere to add to the fun!!? Hard to believe that November is here. It came sooner this year due to the late start of school. Before you know it, it'll be Christmas.
Tuesday, September 30, 2014
Tuesday, September 23, 2014
The kids are back to school, and it's a good thing cuz that was a LooooooooNG summer! 5 weeks longer to be exact. Thanks to the teacher strike and the stubborn government! Today was only the first official day in their classes. They are in grade 8 (the oldest grade in middle school), grade 5 (the oldest grade in elementary school) and grade two. Next year my three will be in three different schools. We were trying out the homeschool routine while I had them home the past 3 weeks, and it wasn't pretty. I had fun with seeing them learn new things, and thinking up crazy art or science experiments. But trying to instruct such different grades at the same time was nearly impossible. One would goof while I'd be working with another, and on and on. I felt pulled in three directions and my house was always chaos. So we know for sure now that I was not meant to homeschool. And blessings on those moms who can do it, because you are very selfless and have more patience than I do. So we're happy to be back to the usual routine and getting the last two mornings on my own to breathe and do my dishes has been wonderful. They come home at 2pm, so we still have a long afternoon together. Shea is back into the swing of piano lessons and started up with swim club. Riley is in guitar lessons again, and will be in school band. We're not sure what Liam will be up to, but we're just happy to be back in school for now!
Tuesday, August 26, 2014
Another month has passed, and here we sit with no end of summer in sight as our schools are still negotiating contracts with the government. We've been told there may be a month yet of strikes or even longer. It makes what would have been the last week of summer feel rather weird. We haven't shopped for school supplies, and we aren't starting to get back into sleeping routines or taking those "final" trips to the beach. It is strange. We've had a lot of fun the last two weeks. We took our family vacation week in the middle of August. We hooked up the trailer and went down to Osoyoos for the first night. Then we drove over the border into the States for the first time with the kids. We drove to Coeur d'Alene where we had booked 4 nights at the Lake Coeur d'Alene Resort Campground. It was a long drive through some dry old Prairie looking towns. It was close to 40 degrees. We were happy to get to our campground which was set in the forest and stayed very cool and quiet. The next two days were spent at the Silverwood theme park, just half an hour from our campsite. We had heard about this great amusement park and figured the boys would enjoy it as much as Disneyland, so we had to check it out. The first day was spent at the waterpark side of the grounds. It was 38 degrees that day, and so we were thankful for the water. Unfortunately 50,000 other people had the same idea, and we were in lines for over an hour each time, so we hit the wave pool most of the time. The next day we went to the rides. We came early and got first in line for one of the largest wooden roller coasters! Shea (who is 7), was just tall enough, and this was his first roller coaster! Wowza, it was crazy fast! We nearly scared all of them with that first ride! So the three of them stood there in horror as "daddy" and I rode the next one, Aftershock. It was SO fun! I can't do the spinny rides anymore, but the coasters are a blast. The boys got their courage up again and tried a pile of other crazy rides. We loved it and would do it again for sure. The next two days were spent shopping in Spokane and wandering the beautiful city of Coeur d'Alene. It actually looks very similar to Salmon Arm, but the waterfront there is developed so nicely with great boardwalks, marinas, shops and beaches. Makes you wish our town could do the same! We have too many nature enthusiasts in our neck of the woods, who don't want to disturb the bird sanctuaries! Then we headed north, rather than heading back west, and crossed the border near Creston. We camped there one night and toured the Columbia Brewery the next day as our campground was right across the street. It was a fun little spontaneous adventure, and the boys felt like they were in a live episode of "How it's Made". They had lots of questions for our tour guide. It was really cool to see the cans being filled and sealed and pushed along crazy fast. Did you know that something like 98% of glass beer bottles are recycled and reused (after being sanitized) up to 15 times? We watched the part where they wash the bottles and remove the old labels with their fancy machines. Then we took two ferries and stopped in Crawford Bay on the way, to see the artisans there, such as North Woven Brooms, the place that made brooms for Harry Potter and the Bewitched movies. Also we watched glass blowing and the blacksmiths doing their amazing work. The kids were pretty impressed. We camped in downtown Nelson and wandered around the shops there for a bit. The weather was starting to get pretty wet and cold and the kids (and parents) were getting pretty tired. We decided to shorten our trip by a day and came straight home the next day through Revelstoke in the pouring rain. We didn't stop at the hotsprings as we had hoped, but aim to do it sometime in the fall when we're not so tired and wet! We came home to company as Greg's family was coming for the next week. We hosted his sister and her boys and did many fun family beach days and dinners together. We've now got 8 kids under 12 between us! Couch to 5K running plan. We are into our 4th week and are running about 16 min. of the half hour now. It works you up to running really gradually and we haven't hardly had any trouble. I used to do 5K's quite frequently, but Riley has never run much, so this has been great for him. We do lots of talking during the walking parts, and quite often Shea is following us on his bike or scooter. Riley and I even did one run in Creston, and one in Coeur d'Alene! It should take 9 weeks til the program is done, and you're running the 5K. So we are already over half way there! I have 60lbs of peaches sitting in my hallway, so I have my work cut out for me this weekend! I am also planning to do pickles and hopefully some salsa and corn! This morning I started my day doing the ice bucket challenge (to raise money for ALS)! Be sure to check out my video on Facebook! The boys were so happy to dump ice cold water on their mom and film it! I have photos to go with all these words, but most of them are on G's phone, so I will add them later!
Thursday, July 24, 2014
I told my boys they had to write 5 sentences in a journal today. (What a slave driver, mean old mom they have, right?) Thankfully my two oldest got right down to business. They know! We've done this every summer, and though I hadn't made them do it yet this summer, they know that I'm not going to let them get out of it. So they did their duty. The youngest, however, maybe he thought it would go a whole lot faster if he cried over every letter he wrote. And he was writing about kittens and waterslides. Really sad topics. So then my mom bugged me by saying I didn't write my five sentences today...so here I am. In fact, I already just wrote over five sentences and didn't even cry, so there. So summer came early, and work/school came to an abrupt halt. I wasn't quite ready for it all to be over, and yet it was. We went down to meet that sweet new baby nephew of ours. Then when we came home, we camped out at my brothers new farm with my family. Even since the campout we've spent a lot of time out there as they nearly gutted their new house and have done lots of work since. This past weekend (almost a month later), we helped them move out of the basement and into their newly carpeted/painted/trimmed rooms. It looks like a whole new house. So beautiful. Luke and Pam are work horses who we wouldn't see if we didn't practically move in there and work with them! We do take lots of time to enjoy their yard/pool/cherries and animals too though! Anna (my sister) and her kids have been there for a month and she has done so many projects too. She also is my personal side-kick at the beach, pulling weeds, chewing Spitz, picking raspberries in the rain, bellyflopping into the pool, flying down the waterslides, grocery shopping, doing dishes, and we'll often be found wandering around with 9 or so kids! So glad to have her here and sad she's leaving soon. Our little family also did a 3 night stay in Osoyoos with our trailer and sweated it out in the 40 degree weather! We spent most of the time in the water and lived in our bathing suits! We are hoping to do a few more trips before this summer is over.