Saturday, June 19, 2010

Summer visitors...mission accomplished!

Our mission was accomplished...all three girls were returned, safe and sound, to their parents and home!  It was such a delight to have them with us and we hope we helped to take a week that could have been a sad thing and instead turned it into a grand adventure! :)

Friday, June 18, 2010

Summer visitors day 5...last day

Today was a slow day...everyone was a little tired and so we made the day as relaxed as possible.  S helped me with early-morning kitchen duty today.
The only battle of the wills (and it was a very minor one) this week was first thing Monday morning, when S insisted that I pick her up every time the cat came in the room.  Well, knowing that the cat is very sweet and not at all a threat to anyone, and considering the fact that the cat loves to be in the center of everybody all the time, that just wasn't practical!  S had a little quiet time to consider the ruling and pretty quickly decided that she would like the cat instead.  That decided, it was like someone flipped a switch, and S has loved on her ever since!  Mindy is a wonderfully patient cat, so she has tolerated all of the extra 'love' that has been bestowed upon her this can even see her returning S's hug in this picture.
After some playtime, it was Friday goody bag time.  Today's surprises were construction paper, crayons, scented markers, and glitter glue pens.  What a hit!  The kids all spent quite a long time working on pictures.
After craft time, it was nail polish time.  The girls each got to pick out their polish color and a nail-art sticker and they all thoroughly enjoyed the primping and preening.  David had fun watching and then, when he'd remember himself, he'd busily act goofy so as to convince all of the girls that he thought we were ridiculous (note his mischievous grin and the cropped-out bunny ears in this picture).  I forgot to take an 'after' picture of all the girls and their nails -- whoops!
Abigail had OT today...doesn't it figure that this is the only week this summer that got stuck this way (going twice in a week) but everyone was very sweet about it.  We went a little early because I needed a few things at JoAnn Fabrics, so the kids 'helped' me pick out some quilt fabric there, then we headed to the appointment.  We had the whole waiting area to ourselves while Abigail was in her OT, so the kids all sprawled out to color (they just had to bring their new paper and markers) and have some down-time.  When we got home, it was time for Friday family night -- pizza and popcorn in the living room while watching one of the American Girl movies.
After that was bedtime...the long-awaited girls' campout night.  Every other night, we've kept our two in one bedroom and the three girls in the other bedroom so as to ensure well-rested kids each day...but since this is the last night, we let the girls stay in one room together.  They were as giggly and excited as girls always are at events like this!  (David was mollified by getting to sleep on the couch downstairs.)  Judging by the noise level that quickly diminished once we turned the lights out, though, I think the girls only lasted about ten minutes before they fell asleep!!!

 Just before bed tonight, S and I had a sweet little exchange...
S said, "Only one more day!"
Me:  "Until what?"
S: "Saturday!"
Me: "Ohhhhh...and what happens on Saturday?"
S: "Mommy and Daddy tum det us [come get us]!!!"
The girls are all so very excited about that!

Thursday, June 17, 2010

Summer visitors day 4

As I mentioned in my previous post, today was K's the day started with a celebration of that.  The kids were excited to come downstairs this morning and discover a balloon floating from each of their chairs.  K was greeted with 'happy birthday's all around, and after breakfast she opened a little gift from us and the Friday goody bag.  Today they got lollipops and sidewalk after morning jobs we went outside to try out the chalk and burn off some steam.
The kids got the choice between the pool and the slip-n-slide today and it was unanimous for the latter.  S was hooting and cheering with the rest of them although she had no idea what the slip-n-slide was! :)  The minute she saw what it was she decided that she did not like it...but every couple of rotations everyone waited while she sat in the pool for a minute, and that made her happy.
Abigail had her regularly scheduled PT this afternoon; we left a little early so we could visit a nearby playground.  The kids had a blast together.
My apologies to their mama, but K and S are obsessed with having two braids now.  How cute does this look, though?! :)
 These three liked me to push them really fast on the tire swing.
 Abigail and S liked to operate at their own -- more docile -- speed.
They went on the slides and then went birdwatching together (although I'm not sure S ever got the point of what Abigail was patiently trying to explain about the art of birding).
 Sweet sisters
 They finished by playing a few games of hide-and-seek.
 I love S's version of covering her eyes to count!  Her counting was precious, too...they counted up to thirty and she got most of the numbers, only she mentioned the higher ones in her very own order!
K's gourmet birthday dinner...hey, it was 5 p.m. when we were done with PT, and everyone was hungry!  Actually, this was planned...after perusing our schedule earlier this week, I had asked K if she would like Wendy's for her birthday dinner, and she was thrilled with the idea!  Kids are easy to please. :)
 When we got home, it was time for her birthday song and dessert.
We have been practicing one of the fine arts of parenting...wearing out your kids just enough so that they are ready for bedtime but not wearing them out so much that they are overtired and a mess at bedtime!  So far, so good!!!  Tonight's bedtime (after a few extra chapters of Charlie and the Chocolate Factory in honor of the birthday) was peaceful and happy.  Thank you to all of K's family who emailed/called her all produced some big, beautiful, birthday-girl smiles! :)

Happy birthday

One of our guests has a birthday today...
Happy 7th birthday, K!

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Summer visitors day 3

Another great day! Tonight the girls were talking about missing their mom and dad and I pointed out that we are already halfway through the week and that I was a little sad about that because I am so enjoying having them here. K was rather bothered by that; she said it was kinda mean because I should be happy for them!  She does have a point. :)

We opened today's goody bag right after breakfast this morning since my early-morning sneak peek revealed IcePops that would need to be frozen. Here's a birdseye view of the unveiling.
After morning jobs, we had playtime inside so that I could get some housework done. The kids compiled David's castle/knights stuff with Abigail's princess stuff and it was very amusing to listen to the interaction. David's guys, of course, were busy shooting bad guys and locking up prisoners. K finally had enough of that and told him to stop shooting princesses. Shortly thereafter, I heard A sweetly informing her princesses, "Girls, whoever falls out of the castle gets to be shooted."
The big to-do of the morning was making birthday cupcakes for K to take to church tonight and share with her friends.  Notice Vanna White extolling the virtues of the cake mix to her sister...if I remember correctly, she was exclaiming, "Dis SO yummy!"
K and A put the very-pink liners in the pans.
Everyone got a turn to help with the beaters (don't worry, I helped everyone...I just stepped back far enough for a picture while David was beating).
 We all know what the best part of baking is!!!
After the great cupcake bake, we packed a picnic lunch and took it to the pool.  That was a big hit!  We had the pool to ourselves the whole time we were there today and it was great.
A has been very busy practicing her jumping and swimming (and today she practiced sticking her head out of the water for a breath while she's swimming).
K was fascinated with how David can swim to the bottom of the pool to retrieve his toy torpedoes, so they have been working on that together.  K is catching on quite well and can now get a toy from the bottom of the three-feet-deep end of the pool!
 The whole group, all holding still for two seconds. :)
 When S wasn't swimming with me, she was busy playing with -- uh, getting a refill of -- the lemonade!
 We came home from the pool and enjoyed two -- yes, two! -- IcePops each out on the deck.
By the time we finished those, everyone was pretty well calmed down.  We took real baths today :) and then had naptime.  This time everyone took a nap in preparation for a later bedtime due to church tonight.  Even I took a twenty-minute special!  As soon as K woke up, she set to work frosting and sprinkling her cupcakes.
The girls were all very excited about having matching 'two braids' to wear to church tonight.  How cute is that?!  (...excuse Bruce and David in the background...they were being silly so that S would hold still long enough for the picture -- she kept turning around to look at me!)
We came out from church to the sight of this beautiful rainbow.  We could see the whole arch, and sometimes its double.  It was precious to ride home with that view out of the front window and the sound of all five kids singing Bible songs in their sweet voices.
And, after a full and wonderful day, then came bedtime.  Well, almost.  I have been reading Charlie and the Chocolate Factory to them after teeth are brushed and pajamas are donned...tonight they also took turns standing on Bruce's feet/ankles.  I'm not sure why; just because they're kids, I guess!  Tonight S told Bruce, "You a dazy [crazy] daddy!!!"
Crazy isn't a bad our household, in fact, it's rather a revered thing.  But earlier, when Abigail and A were comparing their mommies' ages (we're the same age), A turned to me and said, "You're taller [than her mom], but you're both old."  From the mouths of babes! :)

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Summer visitors day 2

Here is our day, mostly in pictures, with a few captions thrown in for good measure:

After I did Abigail's hair this morning, S promptly announced, "I want my hair same as hers!"  A. was the next to request it, and although K was a mite scornful of the 'matchiness' at first, soon even she succumbed and asked for hers to match, too! :)
 We enjoyed some outside time this morning, before the temperatures got too unbearably hot.
 After that we came in for morning snack and some air conditioning...the kids all played royal family together.
 Next was lunch and goody bags...then pool time!
 Today's goody bags included new squirt guns for everyone!
 S is so cute...and she knows it! :) (I believe that's her daddy's smirk on her face!)
 By the end of pool time, S was so tired that I put her down for a nap as soon as we got home.  She insisted she didn't need one and voiced her disapproval for a few minutes (like any self-respecting toddler would!) but then she took a good nap.  Once she was asleep, I took the older kids outside for some slip-n-slide fun (and no, S did not know that's what we were going to do.  I may be 'mean' enough to make her nap but I'm not that mean!). :)  The kids had tons of fun!
(Abigail finally figured out how to go down on her belly and actually make a splash at the bottom -- hooray!)
Afterwards they got a sprayed clean with the hose (they thought it was very much 'living on the edge' that they got a hose-bath instead of a 'real' bath!) and then we came in to dry off and unwind.  They watched Curious George while I got dinner in the oven.  After dinner was family Bible time and everyone was starting to get very droopy... after a few more minutes of playtime, it was off to bed...with a little entertainment along the way!
 (A and S had both been coveting each other's bed, so we let them switch!)
Bedtime was a little sniffly tonight, but only for a few minutes... everyone was too tired to stay awake for long.  Some extra snuggles and kisses, a reminder of our fun plans for tomorrow, and a countdown to when Daddy and Mommy will be home set things to right and everyone was asleep before 8.
And here are my babies last night...David has an air mattress set up in Abigail's room this week, but apparently they wanted some together-time.  :)