Listening to tummy

This morning I put my ear on Ruby's tummy, told her it was gurgly. She said it was from the milk.

She listened to my tummy and said it was squeaky from the coffee. I said it might be raisin bran, she said it was a birdhouse in there. Lucy added it was a dirty skunk. I said I didn't eat that for sure.

Shawn

5 days in the ceiling

Beaver was a total freak and spent the first 2 days looking for hiding spots in the unfinished basement, found a way into the rafters and spent the next 3 days on top of a heat duct between some floor joists.

Then, all of a sudden, he snapped out of it and started walking around like he owned the place, totally comfortable in every part of the house. I thought we were going to have a cat that nobody ever saw because he lived in the wall and never came out. Good thing he's normal again. Whatever that means.

Shawn

Advertisement for big deal

It appears that Dec. 12 is the day. Probably going to be moving then. It's a Friday. Might do more moving on Saturday than Friday, not sure yet.

You know what's super weird? The seller and my mortgage guy and the realtors picked a closing date without asking me! I mean, they picked an okay day, but I think that's really weird and am a little offended!

So, for those of you interested in helping move, I hope there are several of you, mark your calendars and kind of let me know if you're planning on helping that day, perhaps food and beer provided or something. Beer provided is really not our style I guess.

Shawn

Double doors

Get ready for moving fun! We got double doors for effortlessly receiving the largest of couches! Too bad we only have small couches.

Yes, it's true...



We're moving to Dixon. Pretty crazy, right? And it's also true that we are buying a huge weird house. I am excited, and worried, and overwhelmed, but mostly wondering what this new phase of life will be like. I think it'll be fun, I've decided. =)

We kind of alternate between feeling like we are doing something crazy and impulsive, to feeling like we are doing what we've really wanted to do all along.

And there is definitely room for chickens in our new big yard. =)

So--if any of you are going to be in the Rockford/Dixon area over Christmas break and need a break from family and festivities =) we are having a huge party...um...I mean an huge buddy moving day, and a huge buddy fix-the-old-house day! and you're invited!

Oh yes, and that's the other thing--we are closing on the new house December 19th! Crazy.

And the fireplace room is the only NOT weird part of the house. There's teacup wallpaper! And pillars! And a sink in the master bedroom! And a weird budweiser bar in the basement! And a mural! And I think I love it!

Tasty Fish

So we just finished a rowdy rumpus pretend game. I must say it did not end well. You see, we had the beds pushed together, and one of them is 8 oe 10 inches higher than the other so it's fun to jump up and around, and I was kind of in the middle and I was the octopus with the tentacles and the tackling and Lucy was Hungry Shark and Ruby was Tasty fish and they ran around and around trying to eat each other.

So anyway I was on my back, and somehow Hungry Shark had managed to sit on my arm and was holding it down, and I look up to see Tasty Fish in midair-cannonball from the higher bed right onto my unprepared self. With no hands available to break the fall, I received Tasty Fish like a sack of flour in the gut and that was the end of that game. I'm not feeling 100% but it was a pretty good game. Go Tasty Fish!

shawn

Ruby! Wow is she hilarious!

Lucy got her hair cut!

Fall Fun

Isn't Milo getting huge?? And I totally didn't realize at the time that Lucy was playing with a cabbage.

I LOVE Lucy's posing-for-the-camera smile.

I really like this picture, but Ruby is sooo annoyed here. For some reason she really didn't want her picture taken today. Everytime I would point the camera at her she would scream, "DON"T TAKE MY PICTURE!!!" It was very unlike her.


Lucy seemed really grown up today. I don't know what it was really... She was sweet and chatty and easy going (for the most part). She just seemed way older all of a sudden.

The neighbors were burning and the smoke and sunlight coming through the trees looked so amazing. I wish I could've captured it better.

Today was a really nice day. We spent the day with my parents and the evening at a costume party and it was just so sweet and fall-ish.

Better things to come.

Thanks for the prayers. They worked. I have my leadership-stepping-down letter to turn in tomorrow. An agreement has been reached. I'm taking my life back. I really missed the family these last few weeks. See you all soon.

Shawn

Work

So--I'm keeping a tally of how much Shawn works this week. The way I calculate it is hours away from home--so that does include several hours of driving.

Monday: 6:00am-6:00pm (12 hours)
Tuesday: 6:00am-1:30am! (19.5 hours)
Wednesday: 7:00am-7:00pm (12 hours)
Thursday: 12:00pm-8:00pm (8 hours) We had a nice morning this day.
Friday: 6:30am-6:30pm (12 hours)


Plus at least 1/2 hour each night for phone calls (which I am not including in my tally of hours away from home, I am just mentioning them so that you have a better understanding of what his at home hours are like)

63.5 hours, and he's taking Saturday off, so I'm excited about that!

The kids and I are doing great, so I really can't complain about that. We have our routines, I have my ways of dealing with any problems, and we've been having so much fun...

Maybe that's actually the worst part--that we're doing so well without him.

Summer Stonesifery Day!

Here are some pictures from our day visiting cousins! Lucy, Ruby and Milo are playing with Isaac (5), Naomi (2.5), and Eli (11 weeks or so). We had a blast! I think I need to get some photography tips from Chris and Rachel (and Nolan) though.
I love the look on Isaac's face in this one!

Naomi was either eating, or asking to eat something the whole time we were there! I got a lot of pictures of her eating! =)

Lucy would rather play in a puddle (and the mud) than the slip n' slide.

Here's Milo with one of his huge smiles!

Laurie and Eli--adorable!

It was just a really great summer day!

Playroom fun




We're fixing the playroom! Shawn and I spent the weekend trying to make sense of the playroom. I even followed Kim's example and had the girls help. (Well, they helped a little, and then they left to spend the weekend with grandma and grandpa.) And I know it looks like I just threw everything out, but really things are just getting moved and reorganized. Yes, we still have a ridiculous amount of toys, they are just all put away!

And I remembered to take a 'before' picture this time!

Love ya,
Val

Subway Left Sauce Off Sandwich

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. (AP) - Jacksonville police say Reginald Peterson needs to learn that 911 is not the appropriate place to complain that Subway left the sauce off a spicy Italian sandwich.

Police said the 42-year-old man dialed 911 twice last week so he could have his sub made correctly. The second call was to complain that officers weren't arriving fast enough.

Subway workers told police Peterson became belligerent and yelled when they were fixing his order. They locked him out of the store after he left to call police.

When officers arrived, they tried to calm Peterson and explain the proper use of 911. Those efforts failed, and he was arrested on a charge of making false 911 calls.

Peterson did not have a listed phone number.

My kids love band-aids

Lucy peeled herself with a vegetable peeler today.

She was pretty calm, but there was that hint of hysteria in her voice.

"I think my finger is dead!"


Shawn

Shawn's ridiculous recipe

6:15 PM by valandshawn 3 comments
Here's one for you

2 packs of ramen soup (pork works as well as any)
Make those up the same way you did when you were 12, but 2 minutes before the noodles go in, add some stuff:

Fake crab meat
Mushrooms
Cabbage
Parseley flakes
Garlic
Ramen powder (sodium asplode!)
Soy sauce
Sesame seeds or oil
Any other crazy crap what comes in your mystery vegetable box every week (Kale today)
Egg- That's right. Just crack the mother and put it in the soup. Makes it kind of rich and filling.


I don't know if I'm proud of it, but I ate it.

Shawn

Zucchini

I love zucchini! It seems like one of those vegetables that no one really loves, but I do! I love zucchini stir fried with onions and mushrooms, I love zucchini sliced in half and cooked on the grill, and I love the tasty zucchini crumble the girls and I made for dessert today! Here's the recipe:

Makes 6-8 servings

4 1/2 cups flour

3 cups granulated sugar, divided

½ teaspoon salt

1 1/2 cups butter, cold

6-8 cups thinly sliced zucchini (about 4 large zucchini)

2/3 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice (about 3 lemons)

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

¼ teaspoon ground or freshly grated nutmeg

•Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

•Stir the flour, 2 cups sugar and salt in a large bowl until well combined. Add the butter and cut it into the flour with a pastry blender or your fingertips until the mixture looks like coarse oatmeal.

•Pour half the mixture into a 13x9-inch cake pan. Using your fingers or a rubber spatula, press the mixture evenly into the bottom of the pan. Bake for 10 minutes. Remove the pan from the oven and set aside.

•Combine zucchini and lemon juice in large pot over high heat; cook until zucchini is tender, 8-10 minutes. Stir in remaining 1 cup sugar, cinnamon and nutmeg. Simmer 1 minute more. Stir in ½ cup of reserved flour mixture and continue to cook, stirring constantly, until mixture thickens. Remove the pot from the heat to cool for 10 minutes.

•Pour the zucchini mixture over the baked crust and sprinkle with the remaining flour mixture. Return the pan to the oven and bake until it is lightly browned and bubbly, 40-45 minutes.

Web Cam

We have a webcam- our skype name is stonesifers. I never did anything like that before, but the communication was actually pretty satisfying. It was actually almost like hanging out in the Chris Padgett room! I could see the top bunk from his cam where Deaver cat hangs out and I taunted him one time and he chased me out of the room and attacked my leg!

Shawn

Other Stonesifer Entertainment

8:17 PM by valandshawn 0 comments
I realize that half of our blog readers read Chris's anyway, but in case you don't and you're looking for some good Stonesifery entertainment, his blog (linked at side) has some outstanding stuff of that variety with the photos and the video stuff.

Shawn

Markers in the Car


So--Grandma gave Ruby some markers in the car. I had no idea what was going on in the back seat!!

=) val

My New Favorite Salad (Julie--you are not going to believe this!!)

6:12 PM by valandshawn 1 comments

I really felt the need to show you all a picture of my new favorite salad. It's sweet, and delicious, and beautiful, and here's the recipe so you can all try it.

Toss together:
Any type of lettuce or salad greens
Sliced almonds
Dried Cranberries
Thinly sliced, perfectly ripe Pears
Some leftover grilled chicken, if you have any handy

Top with yummy Creamy Poppyseed Dressing

I have one almost every day!

It's kind of funny--because my cousin Julie and I both have a horrible childhood memory involving an orange cashew chicken meal that we both threw up because it was soooo gross. Ever since, neither of us have been able to eat any sort of meal that has fruit, nuts, and meat in it. But now I love this salad! Julie (and everyone else)--you should try it!!

love ya,
val

Ruby changes the lyrics

But she understands the importance of rhyming!

Twinkle twinkle little doop!

Shawn

Pine nuts!

I just had my first experience eating pine nuts, and I must say that it's the perfect combination experience between eating sunflower seeds and eating a tree. For whatever reason, I was kind of okay with it. I'm not saying you should definitely try it, but if you're like, hey, let's eat something wierd, pine nuts would offer the right excitement level while still being a better choice than, say, a pine tree.

I hear Ruby loves them too.

Shawn

Funny things kids say

So--on our way home from church yesterday, Ruby got really worked up. She said, "Mommy! God forgot to teach us about the peaches!!" I'm not exactly sure what she meant by that.

And Lucy has been making up funny poems while she plays pretend. This morning she was pretending to be an elephant, stomping around and such, and she said,

"Elephants eat whatever they find!
Elephants look in the cabinet, behind!"

Milo and Daddy!

Angelic Organics

We just got our first boxes of fruits and veggies yesterday! I am so excited. Lucy and Ruby are really excited about the fruits--when we picked them up they immediately pulled out a peach and a pluot (which apparently is a cross between a plum and an apricot) and ate them right there.

We got some normal stuff--grapes, peaches, broccoli, spinach, scallions...
And some not so normal stuff--swiss chard, choi, radishes (which are normal, but I don't like them, so I still need to find some recipe that I can use them in that isn't too radish-y) and garlic scapes (which I didn't know about, but I won't have any trouble putting these to use).

It's so exciting! Today I made mac & cheese with swiss chard for lunch, and creamy choi soup for supper--which were both really good and not weird at all! Tomorrow I'm planning on making a spinach and garlic scape frittata. It's really exciting to be handed vegetables and to be told--"Here! Do something with this!"

It's also really helpful that the farm sent us a cookbook. =)


love, val

Yea for Gymnastics!



So--I've got tons to blog about! I just don't have much time to do it! =) I guess I'll start with gymnastics. It's going so well! Lucy has had 2 classes now, and she's having fun, she's getting along with the other kids, and she's doing what the teacher asks her to do! It has just been so amazing to watch her in class. (She's the one on the left, participating!) I'm just so excited for her, and I'm so glad she's having a good time. =)

val

How do you hold a pencil?

Apparently I don't have a functional pencil grasp!

Lucy holds her pencil funny, so I was trying to look up info on what I should do about it. I guess I hold my pencil funny too! =) I've got the thumb wrap grasp near the bottom. Anybody else hold their pencil funny?

val

Starlite Radio

Here are some pictures that the newspaper took at the Starlite Radio CD Release Party. There's one of Milo and me! I had a ton of fun. It was the first concert type thing that I've been to in a while, and it was Milo's first ever! =) Here is where you can buy the CD (or just ask Shawn). Anyway--it was really fun.

Go barefoot!

2:28 PM by valandshawn 2 comments

Check it out! I knew barefoot was better! =)


val =)

--oh--you know, forgive the evolution references. I was just excited to see an article about how unnatural shoes are. =)

Gymnastics!

So--I signed Lucy up for a trampoline/tumbling class. I'm really excited. I think she is too. =) We'll see how it goes... I know she'll love it--if she's not too scared to try.

I was a little nervous, because I wasn't sure how things would work with Ruby and Milo there with me while Lucy was in class, but the facilities are really set up for someone like me! =) There is a room off of the gym where we can sit and watch everything that is going on--they even have books and coloring books for ruby to do while Lucy is in class. And--even cooler--attached to the gym is a showroom for a wooden swing set company. They have a bunch of swing sets set up that kids can play on! So--Ruby can even play on the swing sets and we can watch Lucy's class from there, without being disruptive or anything. =) And everyone was so friendly! And (so far) there's only 4 kids in the class--which sounds like the perfect number of kids. =) so--I'm excited. Lucy picked out her leotard already and everything. =)

It starts on Tuesday, and I'm really hoping that it goes well. Lucy's excited about the trampoline, and the leotard, but she got pretty nervous when she figured out that I don't actually come to class with her.

So--yeah. I'll let you know how it goes!

love ya,
val

Kiddos!

Here are some recent pics. Milo already looks older! Oh--and how adorable is he in his cloth diaper??!




Lockwood Park is (almost) Perfect!

The kids and I (I have to say "kids" now because there's a boy!) have been on the hunt for the perfect park. As you probably know, our yard is tiny & it's a mess & it's just not too fun to be in. I have plans to make it the most beautiful tiny yard in the whole city, but that's just not happening right now. Anyway--we really need a park to play in! And it is amazingly hard to find a good one, let alone the Perfect One.

There are three parks within half a mile or so of our house, and although we've been to each many times, I'm just not happy with them.

The first one is very dirty. There is always trash all over the place. Which I don't really understand, because it always looks like the lawn has just been mowed, but there is still trash everywhere. Lucy has also pretty much outgrown this one, too--it seems to be geared more towards toddlers.

The second one was fine last year. We actually used to go to this one a lot. But this year a creepy guy seems to have taken it over. I don't know--a forty-five year old guy just should not be sliding down slides and swinging on the swings all by himself. Even if he lives right next door--which I am assuming he does because he is always there.

The third one is pretty good as far as playgrounds go. It also has tennis courts, basketball courts and a baseball diamond which are always packed in the evenings and the weekends, which gives it a great 'city park' kind of feel. There's even a guy with an ice cream cart! It's just really fun to be in the middle of that much summer-in-the-park activity. The drawback here is that--being a city park--there are A LOT of fist fights and cussing in the under 8 years old crowd. Hitting and rude words are Lucy's biggest problems right now, so I'm a little worried about her learning things from the other kids.

And the biggest problem of all--none of them have bathrooms!!

So--we've been looking for the perfect park. I figure--if I have to drive across town to get to the park, we better be able to spend the whole day there. It needs to be relatively clean, and it needs to have bathrooms, a really great playground, and at least a little bit of nature--like a trail we can walk down or something. Oh--and it can't be too huge, because I have three kids to keep track of!

Well--I think we found it today! The Perfect Park! It's got everything! Two playgrounds! A little bit of nature! Bathrooms! No Creepy Guy! And best of all-- Horses!! The only problem is that it is 20 minutes away. But that's not really that big of a deal, I guess. Church is 20 minutes away, and so is the grocery store. So I think this might be our new park. If you're ever in town--you should come to the park with us!

love ya, Val

CD Release Party


Starlite Radio CD Release Party
on May 31st (doors open at 7pm, show starts at 8pm)
at Memorial Hall (downtown Rockford)
Tickets are $5
check out www.starliteradio.com (more info to be posted soon)

For anyone that may not have known, I have been an extra musician in this other band for a year and a half or so, and it has been pretty good for me. It's really helped me to not feel like I used to be a musician.

When they started making their album, I thought it might be a fairly reasonable homebrew effort, but it grew into something much better than that such that I can confidently say that I'm proud to be a side musician on it, and should you be fortunate enough to hear it, I think you'll agree.

The project took most of a year to make and was mixed by Don Chaffer of Waterdeep fame (or obscurity depending on which circles you travel) which is a pretty big deal for me.
This thing is also full of sweet bgv's, which it turns out are hilarious to record. If you happen to be in the state that evening, it might be a fun time.

some of the album is actually available for listen here
http://www.myspace.com/starliteradio

bgv's are background vocals. Jargon is like an inside joke or something.

Shawn

First instinctive thoughts about having a boy

Dinosaurs and trucks! This is gonna be awesome!

Shawn

Family names

So it turns out that Milo has a great great great uncle Milo, who is his father's mother's mother's uncle. Who would have thought? I never knew a Milo, nor did I know about my great great uncle milo. (My grandma's uncle)

Turns out that the same grandma had a sister named Ruby. (Ruby's great great aunt)

I actually was a little unsure what other people would think of the name Milo. I mean, I liked it, but you always wonder who will think it's cool and who might make a wrinkly nose face when they hear a baby name. Lots of people have responded positively, which is really vindicating! He seems like a really cool kid so far, but I think it takes a few weeks before you can tell what personality you have anyway.

Shawn

By the way, adjusting to 3 kids is pretty overwhelming. Well, maybe that's not accurate exactly. Really, I think that when you add a baby to whatever routine you had pre-baby, everyone is a little lost for a little while, so I don't think it's the number 3.

Family activities?


I don't think Lucy likes board games, but I think Ruby really does. They're really different kids in a lot of ways, and I'm not sure if they'll enjoy many of the same activities.

It seems like Padgetts all liked the same kinds of things sort of and maybe that was really convenient for family relationships. I hope our kids do everything together.

I'm asking the girls what to tell our friends on our blog.
Lucy says "We can tell them that we love them"
I asked Ruby what we should send to our friends and she said "a brown horse"

Here you go

Shawn

Milo

2:54 PM by valandshawn 2 comments

New Baby!

Hey everyone! We just had a baby! It's a boy! His name is Milo Emmett Stonesifer.

Here are his details and all that:

9 lbs. 10 oz. (exactly the same as his sister Ruby)
21 1/2 in. long

He was born yesterday--Sunday, April 27 at 9:08 am, after 20 minutes (or so) of labor at home. Our midwife almost made it to this one. We are both healthy and doing great!

I'm mostly worried about Lucy and Ruby--so if you think about it--please pray for them. That they would make this transition fairly smoothly. They both really love Milo, it's just a really big adjustment.

I'll post some pictures as soon as I get the chance!

Dinosaur Hats

This week we made papier-mache dinosaur hats. It took several days and it was lots of fun. If we do papier-mache again I think I'd do it differently, but for a first try--I think it really worked out. Oh yeah--we made our own glue with flour and water! I think that was Ruby's favorite part--she ate a lot of it. =)





Lucy just asked

"Did you get me at the pet store?"

If only it were that easy.

Shawn

The upchucket bucket

Lucy and Ruby have had nothing but junkfood at the inlaws today. Hundreds of varieties, it's like the wonka factory over here. It's the middle of the afternoon, and Lucy is making a move on a chocolate bunny. Not until you have some real food kid. She's too full for ravioli, wants to go straight to chocolate bunny, but we're making her eat 5 raviolis first.

One possibility is that she is not full and is manipulating to get right to the bunny. The other possibility, of course, is that she is completely full, and the treat impulse + her parents will doom her to 5 more raviolis, an entire chocolate rabbit and a trip to the upchucket bucket.


Vaguely related story- Ruby does not like hot dogs anymore. A past favorite is lost on a barfing experience. Now when offered a hot dog, Ruby says she doesn't like hot dogs and says "remember when I barfed and daddy took care of me and kept my head in the bucket?"

Daddy sure does. It was an all nighter, 9 barfer while I stayed up all night reading a movie script while my kid woke up every 20 minutes, just enough to stick her head in the bucket and fall back asleep in the daddy arms. I'm glad she remembers and I'm glad she appreciates, cause hot dog barf smells bad. I almost chain-chucked getting the chunks off the sheets. It's amazing what kind of cleanup type events you'll man-up to once you have kids.

Shawn

Grocery Shopping is No Fun

I used to love grocery shopping. We used to eat pretty healthy and I loved shopping for the best deals, and trying new recipes and all that. Well--that has definitely changed now that I have Lucy and Ruby. They both hate grocery shopping. They've got less than a half hour grocery trip time limit before they just explode--which is NOT enough time to go grocery shopping. This has kind of unraveled the whole eating experience for us. I don't have time to look for the cheapest prices, I've been buying more junk food, and I've been making the same meals every week. And since I dread grocery shopping so much we run out of food a lot, and we end up getting emergency fast food (Not healthy or even tasty). I can only see this getting worse when I have THREE kids who hate grocery shopping.

So--here's my plan.

1. We signed up for this fruit & vegetable co-op thing where we just get a box of fruits and veggies every week from a local farm. It's just whatever is being harvested that week. I am so excited! I don't have to shop the produce department or even decide what veggies to get, or wait in the check out lane. I just go pick up a box once a week, and that's it. I think it'll be fun to try new vegetables and new recipes. It seems like it might be a lot of food, so I might even be able to freeze some for the winter. It starts in June and I'll be sure to let you know how it goes.

2. We're going to get a freezer to put in the basement and we're going to fill it up with meat. Like--a quarter of a cow and some chickens or something.

3. The non-perishable stuff it seems like we can get in bulk maybe. Like we can get a big bucket of rice and a case or two of mac & cheese, and a big tub of coffee. This part of my plan isn't completely in place yet--but I'm sure it can be done.

4. There's really not too much left at this point. Shawn could easily pick up milk, juice, eggs, bread and cheese once a week on his way home from work. Or even if I had to do it--that is definitely less than half an hour's worth of shopping.

So--what do you think? Am I forgetting anything? Any ideas on where to get cheap pantry items in bulk? I think it's really going to work out--especially if I can be creative with the vegetables. but I'll be saving so much time and stress by not grocery shopping, that I should have time to look for great recipes and try them out.

Loving the idea of not grocery shopping,
val =)

Our Bedroom is Mostly Finished

Hey everybody! I am pretty much finished painting and decorating our bedroom, so here it is! I still need to give the white trim a second coat of paint, find some curtains that I like, a few knick-knacks for the shelves above the TV, and maybe some pictures to go on the walls--but that could take forever, so I thought I would post some pictures now. We'll have to rearrange a little bit when the baby comes, but I'm really happy with how it turned out!

I wish I had taken some before pictures--but I'm always too excited to start a project and I forget to take pictures of the mess. So--instead of nice dressers, picture a combination of ugly green and gold ones and plastic ones. And instead of green walls with white trim, picture yellowish-white walls with dark, beat up trim. And instead of neatly organized baskets, picture tons and tons of clutter, with more clutter stacked on top. =)

Favorite toy

Right now the girls' favorite toys are the plastic iguanas they got from the Burpee Museum gift shop. They're inseperable. I love it how these kids always pick something cool and hilarious for a favorite toy.

They love Mcdonald's toys as well. A lot of those Mcdonald toys I think "Wow, that's a terrible toy! It doesn't even make sense!" or "That's not fun!" Like a hunk of plastic shaped like an ipod that says American Idol on it and plays a funky 8 second tune every time you press its one button. I thought it was the worst toy ever. Ruby thinks it's the best toy ever. She does a crazy dance every time she presses the button.

I might just be really glad that they love plastic lizards and not Bratz dolls.

Shawn

Why is there cat food

in daddy's boots?

Everybody loves Padgetts


So--a few days ago I asked Lucy what she wanted for lunch and she said, "Hmmm..." and scratched the top of her head. Then she smiled and said, "I'm scratching my head! That means I'm thinking!" And she laughed a little. It was hilarious. I said, "Yeah, it does! How did you know that?" She said, "Chris taught me that!"

Then yesterday she said, "I think we should name the new baby Pedro." I said, "That's a cool name. Where did you hear that before?" She said, "Chris told me about it!"

She also does dances sometimes and says that Chris showed her how to do them.

It's pretty cute. I don't know if Chris really did teach her those things or not (Chris, did you?)--but she definitely knows that he's the guy to go to if you want to learn funny things.

--love,val

Deaver

I think I found buddy town. We're going to take this place over.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Deaver,_Wyoming

Or if you don't want to get the deave, we could go to Beaver, Pennsylvania

Ruby's hilarious (still)

"Hey Ruby, what did God do on the very first day?"

(Thoughtful pause-)
"He knocked the animals down"

February

So--I've been trying really hard to have a better attitude about February--especially since Becky gave me so many great suggestions.

Here are some of the things we've done:

--we made sock puppets! this was really fun. Lucy's is the white one--it's a skunk. She designed and cut out the whole thing--i just hot glued everything where she told me to. Ruby's is a bird. It looked a lot better right after we made it, but it hasn't held up so well with all the playing. She told me what kind of animal she wanted to make, and what colors to make everything.





--shawn and the girls have been making forts (becky suggested it) in the living room out of the couch cushions. They have a pretty good time doing this--but it always makes them sleepy, so we try to do it right before bed. oh--it makes them static-y too. (ruby says it makes them "stagitty.")





--we went to Sapora Playworld today. It's kind of like a giant McDonald's play land. The girls didn't really like this too much--i was surprised. Lucy got lost when she was way up inside of it and some older kids had to help her down. ruby thought the little kids area was too boring, and the big kids area was too scary. oh well. at least we tried it. i think they both would've had more fun if we had brought some friends with. If they knew some other kids there i don't think either of them would've been scared--but all the other kids that were there were either much older or much younger than either of them.

--I've been trying to do more homeschool-y activities with Lucy. This has actually been really fun. We've been trying to decide if we should send her to preschool in the fall or not. I don't know... what i really want is to keep her home at least until she is five/kindergarten age, but i don't know if that would be too much of a shock since it's kind of hard to find kindergarten that isn't full day. Going from no school to all day school seems like it would be hard. We had really planned to homeschool like maybe through 4th grade or so, but now i'm just not sure if that would be the best thing for us... i don't know. so anyway. yeah--we've been doing some homeschool activities and it has really been fun. so i guess we'll just see.

--i gave lucy some yarn the other day. it turns out that she really, REALLY likes tying things to other things. so--right now there is red yarn tied to just about everything downstairs. chairs are tied together and tied to some dinosaurs that are tied to a doorknob that is tied to a cabinet that is tied to the table that is tied to a tote bag that has a bunch of toys in it that are tied together.

i'm having second thoughts about the yarn. =)

--We're going to start having library day. Library day is every monday. Seriously. Rain or shine (but probably not snow) we will be going to the library. No more late fees. No more procrastinating it. The girls love it and so do I--it's just sooo hard for me to get us there once a week for some reason. I paid my $50 fine so now there is no excuse not to go.

Anyway. we are going to try to have a good End of February no matter what!

love. val.

LOTS of Cabin Fever

Hey guys--I know it's been a while since I did an actual blog. things are crazy here. CRAZY. here is just a list of what's been going on.

1. The girls have major cabin fever. (not just beaver fever.) They are bouncing off the walls. They ask me several times a day when they can go back to the park to play. And they are bored to death. They hate all my ideas for craft/science/math projects and they are doing crazy things--like climbing on pianos (WHAT??!) and standing on the counter to sneak tastes of honey. Seriously. Every time I turn my back they are doing something completely insane.

2. Every single room in our house is a complete disaster. We've been redecorating our bedroom and somehow that made every other room explode. there is just stuff everywhere! And the worst part is that none of it has a place. We've had to rearrange a lot of things and we got rid of some dressers/got new dressers so nothing really has a place yet. I want things to be super organized so I'm trying not to just stuff all the junk in the new dressers, but if I don't figure out something soon--it is going to have to come to that.

3. Ruby insists on being called "Diego Go." She's seen "Go, Diego, Go!" a couple of times now, and she loves it. She's always pretending to rescue animals and all that. Well--for the last three days she hasn't let me call her Ruby at all. She won't respond to any question unless I call her Diego Go. I'll say, "Ruby, do you want some juice?" and she'll say, "I just Diego Go." and she won't answer unless i say, "Diego Go, do you want some juice?" It was funny for a while, but now it's really starting to get on my nerves. I named her Ruby!! How long is this going to last??

4. The neighbors keep banging on my door and yelling at me for parking in front of their houses! It's been snowing a lot here, and we are supposed to do that even/odd thing--we park on the even side of the street on the even days, and the odd side of the street on the odd days. anyway--every time I park somewhere other than right in front of my own house, someone comes over to yell at me!! I've always considered us to be really good neighbors--we're not drug dealers, we're not loud, and we aren't letting our house fall to ruins. We don't even have any annoying dogs! I mean--what more could you ask for in this neighborhood?? I guess the neighbors don't look at it that way...

5. I had to quit women's Bible study at church after being told that my kids were going to grow up to hate Jesus and hate me and that I am disobeying God's commands because of the way I parent! blah. I don't really feel like going into details about it right now, but I wanted to mention it so you could see how awkward things have been at church lately.

6. I am not prepared for the new baby at all! I feel like I haven't done any planning, or organizing--the house is a mess--our car doesn't fit 3 carseats--we don't have names picked out--ruby is crazy attached to the crib and I was expecting to have her on the bottom bunk by now--and I feel like I haven't had any time to prepare mentally or emotionally for having THREE kids.

So--yeah. I feel like things have been really chaotic lately. And dumb. And I am soooo ready for summer. And I miss all my friends who live far away. And I wish I had an attached garage. And some chocolate.

love ya, val

Cabin Fever

It's cabin fever. The whole family's flippin out. I feel like I'm a pretty good sport, working outside in this foot and a half of snow drifts, but February never ceases to end my patience. After weeks of December, weeks of January, and half of February, we only have 3 more months of terrible weather before it's 90 degrees out. Any ideas for fun stuff to do in the middle of February? Apparently, eating half a box of chocolates was on my list. Happy V day.

Shawn

not really sick

12:49 PM by valandshawn 1 comments
Not really sick, they were just talking about the beaver fever.

Getting sick

8:02 AM by valandshawn 0 comments
I think the girls have the Beaver Fever

More baby names

Lucy: Axlebass (bass like fish)

Ruby: Meenomonomeenomo

Baby naming

I asked Lucy and Ruby what we should name the new baby

Ruby said Alpha, which was pretty cool.

Lucy said adiaper, which I still require some convincing on.

Shawn

More!


Oh--here is another one i wanted to put up. It looks like an ad for the gap or something. (Shawn took all of the pictures, by the way.) I can't believe how well all the kids got along over the weekend. It was just so cool.

I also realized that we've seen a bunch of buddies since I got my camera, so i'll try to post some of those pictures in the next few days, too.

love ya,
val

Wadsworth Buddy-cation!!

8:57 AM by valandshawn 1 comments




Sorry, guys. I haven't blogged in a long time. Here are some pics of our weekend! We had a great time! Things have been so stressful lately--it was awesome to just spend some time with some buddies.

love, val