Monday, December 7, 2015

My Favorite Boy

This boy stole my heart the moment he was born.  He is sweet and loving and not afraid to show it.  He is growing up so fast and lately every time I turn around it seems he's grown some more.  He is so much more independent now that he is getting older.  He's still the baby of the family though and will gladly let me or his sister do things for him.  I'm not sure if that's a baby of the family thing or a boy thing though!  ;)  He still loves Legos and golf and playing with his sister.  He's funny and entertaining and so creative with coming up with silly games and imaginative play.  He's so smart and things come easily to him most of the time which I hope will continue as he grows.  He likes to learn about history and fighting.  He's just so much a boy and I love that about him.  I love that I have a boy and a girl and I can celebrate their differences.  He loves to play on the computer and his favorite game is still Poptropica.  He likes the beach (even though he still says he doesn't) and swimming and playing with his friends.  He's just a fun kid to be around.  I love being his mama.  I wish I could keep him little longer, but he's a big kid and there's no stopping it so I might as well embrace it and celebrate it as we go.  I took some photos of him to remember him at this stage where he is nine.  I love this stage just as much as the toddler stage and the little kid stage and I hope I love all the stages as much (I suspect I will) in their own way.  I love you, my sweet boy!

Friday, November 6, 2015

Halloween 2015

This year for Halloween we celebrated for a whole week.  The weekend before we went to the Indian Rocks Beach Halloween Fest where the kids got to carve free pumpkins and they had free food, a bounce house and even horse rides.  Then the kids had a Halloween party at the homeschool co-op they attend and the got to wear their costumes again.  My girl had a youth group costume party that week too and she and her friend went as the Fox and the Hound and they won the costume contest!  She ended up getting to wear her costume 4 times this year.  I'm glad she liked it so much!

On actual Halloween night we took the kids trick-or-treating in my mom's neighborhood with two of their best friends.  It was a very traditional sort of trick-or-treat experience except for the fact that it was so hot and humid it felt like you could stir the air.  I swear it was hotter after the sun went down than it was earlier that afternoon.  Since my son insisted on being the grim reaper (he wanted to be him last year but I talked him out of it and there was no talking him out of it this time) he was fully covered and was so hot he had to take his mask off and eventually take off his entire costume.  My girl suffered through the heat and kept hers on.  It was way too cute to take off. :)  Other than the humidity it was a great time and they got so much candy!  I had to carry my boy's plastic pumpkin for him after it got so full he couldn't even add any more to it.  We went back to my mom's house to assess the haul and he fell asleep in her dining room floor before my girl was even done checking out her loot.  We've been gorging ourselves on candy ever since and I'm hoping it's gone soon or it's gonna have to just mysteriously disappear if you know what I mean. 

I took some photos of them in the empty lot next door to my mom's house before we headed out for trick-or-treating.  It worked out perfectly since a forest was the backdrop I ideally would have liked for their photos.  I was so worried about getting pics of them separately since I forgot to last year that I forgot to get one of the two of them together!  I had fun editing these to give them a more spooky feel.
How cute is this fox?!  This is one of the first homemade costumes she's had and she had so much fun designing it and I helped her sew some of it.  She wants to do a homemade costume every year now.

The tail was her favorite part.

I adore her cute poses.

The Grim Reaper.  My boy also referred to him as Grimmy which made it a little less morbid to be dressed as death I guess.

He could see through that mask amazingly!

We found these fun face tattoos at Target and they were so easy.  People kept asking who did her makeup. :)

She was getting into character for this pose pretending she heard something in the distance.

I had to at least get a few shots without the full face mask so I could tell who he was.  He was getting into character too so no smiling this year.  Death has a creepy stare.

My girl's friend was a fox too!  They planned it that way.  I love that they are at that age where they still love to match.  Could you imagine the horror if they showed up as the same thing in a few years?! 

The two cutest foxes I've ever seen!

Tuesday, November 3, 2015

Birthday Boy!

I can't believe that my baby is 9.  I love watching my kids grow up, I really do, but come on, this is ridiculous.  I mean, he was just born like last week, right?  I wish I could slow it down.  I am enjoying the middle childhood years though.  It's so fun having kids who are old enough to occasionally stay up late and who you can introduce to some of the shows and movies you remember from your childhood.  It's fun that they have the stamina to do things we like to do and not get all whiny and cranky.  And although I do miss the funny things they used to say when they were younger it really is fun seeing their interests and passions develop.  I get glimpses of what they will be like as adults and I'm excited to have those grown up relationships with them.  Although my boy still says he is never getting married and never moving away from his mama. :)  I'm sure he'll change his tune on that soon enough.  To celebrate this year he had a Lego themed party with some of his friends.  His birthday was on the same day as his party this year so we started the day with donuts and he had a great day.  I did the annual birthday survey a few days later, but here it is, followed by some of my favorite photos from his special day!

~How old are you? 9
~How does being 9 make you feel? It makes me feel awesome!
~What do you want to learn this year? Nothing. After much prodding by me he said, I want to lean how to make Ava happy by annoying her.
~What was the best thing about being 8? I don't know.
~What did you do on your birthday? I had a party, I ate cake, and I ate ice cream, and played lots of games. What kind of party? Lego.
~What is your favorite color? My favorite color is neon turquoise blue.
~What is your favorite food? Blue ice cream. From Kings Island.
~Who is your favorite person? He just pointed to me and then said, God (he likes to be a tricker). I said, God's not really a person, and he said, Jesus is and that's the same thing as God. Do you have a favorite person on Earth right now? Ben, Ava, Daddy and Mamma. :)
~What grade are you in? 4th
~What is your favorite thing to do for school? Skipping school. What about co-op? I like the spy class and my science class.
~What is your favorite game to play? Ball Dollar Dodge. It's a game me and Ava invented. How do you play it? You throw a ball at somebody and they try to avoid it and if you hit them three times then they are out and you switch. It's kinda like dodge ball. Why is it called Dollar? I don't know.
~What do you like to do with Daddy? Um, bounce my moon ball around. Anything else? I also like golfing with him.
~What do you like to do with Mommy? Um, I like to, um, play with her. I asked him to be more specific and he said to play with his BB-8 toy with me. Do you still like to cuddle me? Yes.
~What do you like to do with your sister? I like to play Shirt Baller Dodge. I just remembered, it's not Dollar dodge, it's shirt baller dodge. Because you use a shirt for the ball. I also like to play Silent Touch and Belly Warriors. Both games that we made up.

~What’s your favorite thing to do with the whole family? Have movie night.
~What’s your favorite store? Target, wait, no, The Lego Store, no, Target, they have more toys and stuff.
~What’s your favorite place to eat? Culvers.
~What’s your favorite book? Fast Food. Seriously? We haven't read that in forever, it's old. Do you have a newer favorite? No.
~What’s your favorite song? My favorite song is Jesus in Disguise. He had to get verification from his sister about that.
~What’s your favorite thing about God? Everything. I like every single thing about Him.

~What do you want to do this year? Get all the BB-8 things.
~What do you want to be when you grow up? A Lego Master Builder.

We played a few fun games including finding the hidden minifigure pictures, guess how many Lego in the jar, and the Lego toss game.  They all were a hit!

He started to blow out his candles before it was time and I love his cute little embarrassed face.  :)

After he blew them out he knocked the little banner into one of the candles as it was still hot and it caught fire!  All the boys thought that was pretty exciting.

We had a great time celebrating my favorite boy.  Next time I blog about his birthday he will be double digits!!

Wednesday, October 7, 2015

Sunset at Indian Rocks Beach

My absolute favorite thing to do with my family is go watch the sunset.  Usually it's this mad rush to get out the door in time so we don't miss it and we get there right as it's going down.  Sometimes though, we plan ahead and actually spend some time at the beach before the sunset just hanging out. That's my favorite.  Sometimes we have friends with us, and sometimes it's just the four of us.  I took my big camera with me a couple weeks ago when we went and I'm so glad I did.  My husband was fishing from the shore and my kids were swimming and I was alternating between swimming and taking pictures.  We even got to watch some teenage boys catch a giant tarpon.  It was a magical night that I won't soon forget with just the four of us doing our favorite things together.  I love that we live in a place where we can make these memories year round rather than just once a year on vacation.  

I love this picture of my two favorite kids!  I think I should frame it.

She was not in the mood for photos, but I still love her face, even when she's slightly annoyed at me.
Another favorite!
The boys catching the tarpon.
Maybe my husband will catch something big next time!  He had something on his line that night, but it snapped.  
I love these even if they are technically mistakes, I love her stance and how the one on the right is out of focus.

I can't wait for more beach days soon now that the weather is so perfect for it!  

Tuesday, September 29, 2015

Back to School 2015!

We started school the day after Labor Day this year.  That's when I remember starting school and even though most of the kids around here start mid August I was totally not ready yet.  The kids weren't either.  My boy wanted to wait until after his birthday, but we started off right before that with a short, easy week to ease us into things.  Every year I become a more relaxed homeschooling mom.  I wish I would've chilled out a little more when we first started but I was in a totally different mindset then.  Plus, I think it just takes time to let go of the traditional model of school and gain confidence in doing your own thing.  This year we joined a co-op that meets on Mondays.  We are loving it so far.  I love it because I get to drop the kids off and do my own thing for a few hours.  It is so refreshing!  I still sometimes feel guilty for just going off and having fun without my kids (and I make a point to not go home and do housework) but I think I'm getting over it. :)  The kids like co-op too.  One of my girl's best friends is in all her classes and my boy has made a new friend as well.  My girl is taking Drama, Astronomy, and Pinterest Cooking.  My boy is taking Sherlock Homeschooler, Astronomy, and Fun with Science, where they do an experiment every week, his favorite thing!  The rest of our week is filled with more traditional classes that we do on our own.  We got rid of our homeschool room this year when we rearranged our condo so that my girl could have her own room.  So far it hasn't been an issue at all and we don't even miss it.  We do school in the floor most of the time anyway and as soon as it cools down a little more we'll be on the balcony too.  I can't wait!  I took photos to commemorate the first day of school, of course, so here are some favorites!  

I seriously cannot believe I have a 4th and 6th grader.  My babies are so grown up!  My girl did the chalk art for me.  We just grabbed those frames off our kitchen wall. 

Love these two spunky cuties!

The collage.  It's tradition. :)

Seems like the time has really been flying lately.  My girl is in middle school and she goes to Youth Group at our church.  My boy isn't really 'little' anymore either.  I feel like I'm gonna blink and they're going to be graduating.  I know from talking to other moms who've been there that that's exactly what is going to happen I just wish it weren't happening so soon!  I'm so thankful to get to teach these two and spend my days with them.  I was just tempted to type, "I'm so lucky", but really, it's not luck.  It's a choice we made in faith that this is what God wanted for our family.  He's been faithful to us in our choice and if you ever feel like it might be something God wants for your family, I'd love to answer any questions you have about homeschooling.  It is HARD, but it is so very WORTH IT.   


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