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Monday, March 30, 2009

Recent Adventures

I have been collecting photos of our recent wanderings, but simply haven't gotten around to posting about all that we have been up to, so here is a random  overview of our many adventures that you may or may not have heard about yet.

A trip to the Museum of Science to check out the new exhibit on Frogs - can you see the colorful poison dart frogs in the last photo?



Glass blowing - I am in awe of the skill this takes, and how easy the artists make their craft appear. It was extremely hot in the workshop on the day we visited. It is hard to imagine them working throughout the summer.


A visit to the Audubon Society for a presentation on the owls that live in our area. The most impressive was this Great Horned Owl. At home we studied more about them, even dissecting pellets (the bones left over after an owl's meal). The kids thought this was great fun - I went running for the antiseptic wipes.


We have been seeing lots of signs of spring lately too - hopefully the season decides to stick around for a while.  





Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Just a few more weeks!

Well, I've reached THAT stage of pregnancy . . . you know the one . . . The stage at which you hop out of bed and pull your clothes out of the dryer because you know that they fit and you don't want to have to guess which ones in the drawer you have outgrown . . . the stage at which simple tasks like washing the dishes require a stool because standing at the sink for 10 minutes is simply too exhausting . . . the stage at which perfect strangers pat your belly in the grocery store and say things like "Oh you must be due any day now. It' is so exciting." And you know what? It is! ~ In just a few weeks our family will be joined by a newborn baby girl!!!

My sweet husband had today off and for some reason (probably those unceasing braxton-hicks) I had an enormous urge to nest, so the day was full of simple projects to get ready for our newest family member. 

I packed three suitcases - one for me and hubby at the hospital, one for baby, and one for the kids who will be sleeping at their Nana and Grandpa's house when our little girl arrives. There are a few things that I'll need to toss in at the last minute, but it is nice to have them mostly ready to go. Uh oh, late night thought . . . the dog will need to go somewhere too . . . well, I guess I'm not as well packed as I thought.

We moved the exercise equipment out of our room so that there is now space for the cradle.  I now need to figure out where we can fit a changing table. Until we finish the master bedroom baby is sharing the room with us, or more accurately, we are living in her room, so space is at a premium. Maybe it would work best in the playroom downstairs? Hmmm...

I scheduled some professional photos, haircuts, and other random appointments that I would like to get done before baby arrives and I did some last minute shopping. Okay, most of it was groceries, but who wants to run out of breakfast cereal or soap with a newborn in the house.

My closet got a thorough cleaning. I have learned that my tendency after bringing a new one home is to wear whatever is easiest to reach, regardless of fit. I tried to remove as much as I could. If I haven't worn it yet - it's out (I probably never liked it anyway). If it is poorly made, stained or still way too big - it's out.  If it is for the wrong season - it's out (I have no idea why I thought I would need a swimsuit during this winter pregnancy).  In general I got rid of as many of the boxy, baggy, droopy maternity clothes as possible.  There is still plenty to last me for the next few weeks, but two full bags are in my trunk waiting to be driven to my sister's house - she is in her second trimester so I'm sure a wardrobe revamp will be a welcome change in her closet too!

The kids went with their Nana for a special dinner at Bugaboo Creek (which by the way, my little boy thinks is very exciting because "that's my name!" - we have always called him by the nickname Bugaboo, I have no idea how or why we even started.) so the two of us had a nice sushi dinner and some quiet time to talk.  We discussed her name (yet again) and finally came to a conclusion that both of us are excited about.  At least, that is, until we discuss it again. We are slow decision makers when it comes to names.   The ongoing joke at our church is that we will be bringing the baby names book to the hospital with us.

Phew . . . it's been a busy day - and now, of course even though I'm completely exhausted, I am up at 4AM typing on the computer instead of sleeping.  Pregnancy does wacky things to my sleep cycle. Oh well, I guess I'll be right on schedule for those middle of the night feedings!


Please forgive the funny photos - I just couldn't stand to post pics of my puffy face. Stay tuned for professional shots!

Thursday, March 19, 2009

6 years old!

My big girl had her sixth birthday party this past week. Waiting for this event has been SO hard on her.  Ever since her brother's party a month ago she has been asking "is my party tomorrow?" nearly every day.  

Her special request was a Native American party (okay, she calls them indians still - we aren't so terribly P.C. in our house).    Ever since studying early American history this past Thanksgiving, she has been completely enthralled with the idea of living in a birchbark wigwam and wearing feathers in her hair. 

Nina made her a beautiful costume.  It was perfect with the eagle feather we found this past summer.  What we didn't know was that all of the kids would end up in costume for the party - too cute!  

We had a fun time "shooting arrows" (made from electrical tape and drinking straws), making beaded necklaces and calf skin cuffs, and searching for horses (by tossing a ball of streamers with toys wrapped inside).  The highlight event, however, was a tracking game created by Nana.  The kids were given paw prints with clues written on them.  They then had to search out specific locations and do funny things at each like put their feet up on the couch or run in a circle.  The tracks led them out into the backyard, and then to the front of the house where a brand new bicycle was waiting for the birthday girl.   At first she was so stunned that her only comment was a wide eyed "that's neat."  Then Daddy got her up and rolling, and she was smiling from ear to ear.  

What a fun birthday!









Happy Birthday sweetheart!

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Stop obeying me like that!!!

The kids have been learning about birds lately, so I sent them outside this afternoon, binoculars in hand, to fill our backyard feeder and look at the local birds.  "When you are in the woods be quiet, and try to get as close to the birds as you can" I advised.

30 minutes later I heard a loud scuffling at the back door "Mom!!!! We found a bird, and we got REALLY close. We can see it's feathers, and it's round black eyes, and even it's claw toenails!!!  Come see!  Come see!"

Uh-oh . . . close enough to see a bird's "claw toenails" . . . this can't be good.  What they found:
A robin must have flown into our diningroom window that morning.  That is NOT what I meant when I said get close!!!

"Mom, It has beautiful feathers. Can we stretch out it's wing?"

"Uh . . . well . . . um . . ." Can you hear my gears turning - I love that they are interested in nature - and we learned that John Audubon often killed the songbirds that he was observing so that he could paint them more accurately, which means that the idea of messing with a dead bird is oddly appropriate, but UGGH!

So I came up with the hairbrained idea that they could touch the bird only AFTER I bagged it for them. Well, that turned into a rather wacky adventure. After looking closely at it, splaying it's wings and feeling it's beak, they happily carried it around the yard for a while.  Eventually they decided that "Robin red breast" needed a new nest. So this is what they did:
Sweet in the most repulsive kind of way.   I know.

Nature study isn't as pretty as it is cracked up to be!

Sunday, March 8, 2009