Thursday, May 30, 2013

Last Day of School 2013

Today is the last day that all three of my chicks are safe and sound at their elementary school together. Next year Ashlynn will be entering the No-Man's-Land that is Middle School.

As you can see from the pictures, it was a little bit of a rough morning. Ash was moody. She was barking at everyone. As we were taking these pictures she said, "I don't feel like smiling." Lovely.

Briggs couldn't find his toothbrush, which is really odd ( I can't comprehend how one loses a toothbrush) and gross at the same time, because this is the conversation that followed.

"Did you or anyone take it out of the bathroom?"
 "Did you have it yesterday?"
"No" ...
"You haven't brushed your teeth in a long time, have you?"

And then he just hung his head in shame... oh boy.

So as I'm sitting in my quiet house for the last time for a few months, these are the thoughts that are running through my mind:

  • I always want to majorly purge my house of junk this time of year. I want to throw it all away!!!
  • I've got bleach soaking in the bathroom because it smells like a public urinal in there...
  • I won a little family competition we have going on with license plates. I found triple 8 on a plate, so I get to request something from the kids. My request was that they learn how to strip and wash their own bedding this summer. Should they have learned this by now, I don't know. Whatever...
  • I've got the kids end of the year surprises all ready and waiting for the kids today. I made scrapbooks out of all of the notes I put in their lunches this year. I even included some instagram pictures of each of them through out the year in the books. I also made another summer playlist, just like last year. And I have a pile of new books to give them that will be our summer out-loud reading.  I kind of like these traditions we've started.
  • I'm grateful that I don't have to make school lunches anymore for a while. I hate that job.
  • I'm thinking about how much time I'm taking on this post, and that the number of minutes to myself is dwindling, so I better make them count. 
  • I love summer! (But I also like a little peace and quiet...)

Friday, May 24, 2013

Lady Macbeth Kills it!

Macbeth My Dear from Kate Rober on Vimeo.

Ashlynn played lady Macbeth in her 6th grade musical. It was a VERY amateur production, but it was a really fun experience for her. I managed to get a video of her singing, also, a VERY amateur production (my filming, not her singing) - lots of heads in the way and such.

I loved hearing her sweet little voice. In my eyes, she stole the show!

Monday, May 20, 2013

Random Monday shots

 During Briggs's games, he always comes running over to us in between innings just to check in and give me a kiss on the cheek.
 These two got a few minutes at the park while we were waiting for Briggs to finish up cubs. This shot is entitled, "Mommy! Can you take my picture?" Always.
Whenever these two find a few spare minutes, they can be found drawing and doodling. I signed them up for a cartooning class this summer and they are pretty excited.

Elk Grove has tons of great parks, which apparently catch on fire easily. We came across this park the day after it burned down. Can you see how the slide melted?

Saturday, May 18, 2013

Snoop Ash

Ashlynn just announced that she is rapping during her sixth grade promotion ceremony.

You might want to get your tickets now...

Just sayin', yo.

Thursday, May 16, 2013

May at Warp Speed

This time of year seems to move at warp speed for our family. The kids last day of school is May 30th, which means Glorious Summer is on the horizon. Our time has been filled up with end of the year field trips and parties. Between dance, Activity Days (Ashlynn), baseball, cub scouts (Briggs), piano lessons (Ty), and the never ending line up of playdates, our schedule has become a bit of a brain teaser puzzle.

You know that brain teaser about the fox and the chicken and the corn that you have to get across the river in a boat, but you have to make sure that the fox doesn't eat the chicken and that the chicken doesn't eat the corn, so you have to separate and supervise and take what seems like superfluous trips back and forth across the river? That's how I feel lately. I'm just trying to get all of my cargo safely across the river, and still enjoy the ride.

 Last night, our baseball coach made a mistake on our schedule, which means I went to four different parks before I found the right one that our team was playing at. It was a bit of "Let's tour all the parks of Southern Elk Grove!". We would pull up to a park and see a bunch of little boys in red shirts. I'd drop Briggs off and send him running to the dug out only to notice that he was slowing down because they weren't his team. Elk Grove is known for it's surplus of great parks, so having nothing to go off of, we just kept going to park after park until we finally found the right one...45 minutes late (of course nobody was answering their cell phones to help straighten up the mess).

The only thing that saves me is that most of the kids are old enough to be left home alone for a bit so I don't have to drag EVERYONE EVERYWHERE!

But this month alone Ive been to the State Capitol, Coloma State park, Fog Willow Farms, and end of year swim party next week, worked at the school book fair for a couple of days, helped out with a farmers market at school, helped Ashlynn audition and get the part of Lady MacBeth in her school musical, taught a relief Society lesson and spoke in Sacrament meeting, attended umpteen dozen baseball games and practices and dance rehearsals, collected dozens of costumes from 40 kids for ashlynn's performance group, helped with Mormon helping hands days... really this is just the tip of the ice berg.

This time of year I love preparing for summer. I'm in the process of getting scrapbooks together like I did last year of all of the lunch notes I wrote to the kids. This year I included a smattering of instagram photos, as well. I'm making another summer playlist, as well. And there's always our Summer To-Do list, which I love. I always want to get their treasure boxes of school memories organized and accessible because they always bring home tons of projects that they have worked on throughout the year. And then there's the occasional OCD urges that come out of the blue, "Let's deep clean the grout in the kitchen!" "Let's make a quilt!".

I just have to remember that I enjoy all of this stuff, and I have to remember to constantly check my calendar, otherwise a chicken or a fox is going to get left behind!

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

State Capitol Field Trip

 I never posted pictures of our State Capitol field trip. Have I mentioned I've been on a lot of field trips this spring? This was with Briggs's class again.

 My cute little group of boys.

 Drawing the state seal

 View out of the capitol looking at the golden bridge.

Easter 2013

 I love this one. This is his true personality.

Here's our easter. It was pretty relaxed. We decorated eggs with sharpie markers and had to hide them inside because it was raining.

Monday, May 13, 2013

Field Trip! Field Trip!

May has been the month of field trips. And today I went with Ty's class to Fog Willow Farms. Here's what we saw:
1 volcano
2 of the sweetest Burnese Mountain Dogs (that I thought acted just like Nana from Peter Pan)
3 baby bunnies (called kittens)
2 fluffy chicks
1 peeing turtle
A bunch of baby goats, one of whom was standing on her moms back like it was No Big Deal
1 diva piglet who squealed if you looked at her wrong

Ty was cute and bossy.
It's was hot in the sun and I wanted to jump into the Cosumnes River.
26 first graders can be exhausting.
Ty wants to go back.

I'd go back just to see the dogs again.


It's May and I'm already over the heat.

Mother's Day 2013

 We did a little photo shoot before church on Mother's Day. It was a good day to be a mom. I got to relax, didn't have to cook any meals, and I had created a Pinterest Board of Mother's Day gift ideas that made the shopping really easy for the family. I was spoiled!

Friday, May 10, 2013

Sand Lot boys

These little fourth grade boys are the cutest. They are classmates, friends and baseball enthusiasts. And last night they were rivals. The Angels played the Red Sox, one of the most anticipated games of the season for these little Sand Lotters! The Red Sox ended up winning 8-6, but Briggs got a good hit and RBI off of his friend who was pitching. Yesterday at school their teacher took a poll "Who thinks Kaleb's team is going to win, and who thinks Briggs's team is going to win?" It was a fun night with good memories. makes me grateful for good friends.

Briggs has had a good season this year. His skills have improved. He can hit a kid pitched ball, he can field a little better and has made some really great plays this year. His coach even awarded him with the game ball after one game. Way to go Briggs!

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Harry Potter and Spring Storms

Yesterday I finished reading these books with the boys - Ty, the Prisoner of Azkaban and Briggs, the Deathly Hallows. They were both so excited to hear the endings of the stories, both begging for turns to read with me. Ty only had one chapter to finish. As soon as we finished he insisted on watching the movie (because I'm a purist like that and make my kids finish the book before watching the movie). We actually all sat down together and watched it. We don't usually watch movies like that on a school afternoon, but yesterday was a busy overcast day and it felt good to sit and watch a little HP. The cozy, snowy scenes of Hogwarts always make me crave the same kind of weather.

 After dinner, it was Briggs's turn to finish his book. As we curled up to read, a storm gathered outside. So as we completed Harry's journey with him, the windows were being lashed by rain and the sky was filled with lightening. It was the perfect spring storm that is unusual for these parts, but made the reading even more cozy. This is my second time reading the series out-loud, and so far, each time I finish that 7th book, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, I still get emotional. It's such a beautifully written story, with a great overall message. (I might have shed a few tears, but I disguised them as "Hagrid's" tears...) Seconds after reading the last sentence, the storm caused the lights to flicker, ever so slightly, and I told Briggs that it was caused by the magic of the book. He knew it wasn't real, but it's still magical to pretend with your child.

We've been working on these two books with the boys for the last 6 months. I'm going to miss reading them. I guess that means it's time to start looking forward to our summer reading books!

Friday, May 3, 2013

Fourth Grade trip to Coloma

I got to go with Briggs to Coloma and visit the state park where gold was fist discovered in California. It was a little warm but there was lots of shade.
The kids favorite part was panning for gold. Every single kid was convinced he was going to strike it rich. Briggs included. I have never seen so many 9 and 10 year old so focused and quiet on one thing for so long before.

Gold Panning. It might rival mine craft for entertainment value.

In other news, I was really proud of Briggs because he chose a certain kid in the class to be his partner for the field trip because he said that he was afraid no body else was going to chose him and he didn't want him to feel bad. The kid he chose has some special needs but Briggs is so patient and helpful. He doesn't talk down to him but he's always helping him out. At one point in the gift shop today, the kid got a little confused and walked right past everyone in line and went straight to the counter. After I saw him do this I told him he need to go to the back of the line. He looked at me a little confused. So Briggs stepped right in and very patiently said, "it's just like the cafeteria. You have to get in the line," and he cleared things right up.

He's a great kid.

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Instagram Catch up

We had Mormon Helping Hands Day on Saturday. 1,000 + volunteers working together to fix up some local parks. Even the boys got in on the action. That mountain of bark was too much to resist.

In need of something to replace Downton Abbey, I came across another period Drama. It's a little more sleazy than DA, but I've only watched 2 episodes.

Brian was watching the kids play in the backyard. Then they started acting like typical kids, with the general rule breaking and disobedience that they are so good at, and got a major tongue lashing by Brian.
Briggs is on the Angels this year and this is a shot of the team right after they beat the first place team and moved into first themselves!!

A conversation I had with Brian the other day.

I've been doing a lot of reading with the boys lately. Sometimes they fight over who gets to read with me first. I love it (the reading, not the fighting).
Oh, Rosie. Poor girl. RIP.