Thursday, May 26, 2011

School's Out For Summer!

Yesterday was the last day of school for the boys. On Tuesday it was the annual field day at the school. Each year Travis goes in and volunteers to help out with dodge ball with our friend, Devin. I think that those two have more fun playing it, than helping the kids out. As per our usual weather as of late it rained & was cold so they had to hold field day inside this year. Never as fun as outside but between the three gyms and the lunchroom there was plenty of room for them to do all of the scheduled activities. I think they had a blast.

Today we all slept in, and were generally lazy. By about 3:00 both of the boys were bored. Just 80 more days until school starts. Yes, I counted!

Monday, May 23, 2011

Teacher Gifts!

Each year I've tried to make some kind of photo gift for the boys' teachers at the end of the year. However, this year I decided that I was only going to do it when they are in the younger grades. I love Parker's teacher so I wanted to make something for her. Each class has a teacher and a teachers aid. It is too much to try to do four gifts so basically I picked my favorite and went for it. 

Preston had the same kindergarten teacher as Parker has this year. She has always wanted one of these mosaic pictures that some of the other teachers have, so I made her one. I used pictures that I have taken of the kids in the class throughout the year. I mounted it on a wooden plaque and covered the top with a coating that makes it look like canvas.

If you click on it you can see the mosaic tiles.

I also made some cards out of different mosaic pictures and bundled them together. One card is the actual thank-you card for the teachers, then the rest are just blank cards. In the actual cards I put in Starbucks gift cards.

For Preston's teachers I made a card with all the kids' names on the front then put the Starbucks gift cards inside.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Time Off!

Travis took this week off so we could landscape the front yard. On Sunday & Monday we worked on the sprinklers & got maybe 1/2 of them done.

Parker was surprisingly helpful. He held pipe, helped dig, and carried the pipe out of the garage. Hmm..very un-Parker like!
I must have been drinking heavily when I took this picture and holding the camera slanted.  :-)

And then it rained...and rained...and rained. It started raining Monday night, Tuesday it was a rain/snow mix, It rained all day today (Wednesday), and it is supposed to rain all day Thursday,  Friday, Sunday AND next Monday and Tuesday. I think my dream of moving to Seattle or Portland has come true!

We have standing water everywhere. 

I am normally a rain lover. I usually can't get enough of it and the cool weather. However, I am ready to get something done in the yard!  I was thinking today, it stared snowing last October, and it snowed on Tuesday. That means we've had winter for 8 months now. Just think, if it ever does get warm we'll only have 4 months until it snows again!

Friday, May 13, 2011

Mud Room!

When we were working on the house plans my main two requirements were: 1- a mud room, and 2- the kids' rooms could not be next to the master bedroom. Of course, I had a list a mile long but these two things were high on the list.

At our old house the kids' rooms were on the opposite end of the house and I loved it. I could put them to bed early and stay up doing laundry, using the jetted tub, watching movies, etc. and the noise would not bother them. Also, Travis gets up and goes to work at an ungodly hour & they could not hear his alarm or him in the shower. Parker is a very light sleeper (gets it from me) and any noise and he's up and ready to party!

Anyway, here is how the mudroom turned out. I love all the tile. The kids (Travis) can come in with muddy boots (Travis) and it all stays contained right there in this area. 

My dad made these cubbies for us. I like how they turned out. It is great to just throw all of our stuff in them as we come in from the garage. The boys keep all of their school and soccer stuff here so we can just grab their stuff and go.

The doorway to the left is going into the kitchen. Directly behind the mud room is the door in from the garage, and the door going to the basement. To the far left is the laundry room and the half-bath. Something on my long to do list is to paint the cubbies a different color. I don't love how they blend with the walls. It'd be fun to paint them bright red or something, but I'm sure I'll just stick to a different color earth tone.

I found these cute letter signs at Hobby Lobby...Where else?!

Sunday, May 8, 2011

Happy Mother's Day!

This has been around for years, but I love it.

This is for the mothers who have sat up all night with sick toddlers in their arms, wiping up barf laced with Oscar Mayer wieners and cherry Kool-Aid saying, "It's okay honey, Mommy's here."

Who have sat in rocking chairs for hours on end soothing crying babies who can't be comforted.

This is for all the mothers who show up at work with spit-up in their hair and milk stains on their blouses and diapers in their purse.

For all the mothers who run carpools and make cookies and sew Halloween costumes. And all the mothers who don't.

This is for the mothers who gave birth to babies they'll never see. And the mothers who took those babies and gave them homes.

This is for the mothers whose priceless art collections are hanging on their refrigerator doors. And for all the mothers who froze their buns on metal bleachers at football or soccer games instead of watching from the warmth of their cars, so that when their kids asked, "Did you see me, Mom?" they could say, "Of course, I wouldn't have missed it for the world," and mean it.

This is for all the mothers who yell at their kids in the grocery store and swat them in despair when they stomp their feet and scream for ice cream before dinner.

And for all the mothers who count to ten instead, but realize how child abuse happens.

This is for all the mothers who sat down with their children and explained all about making babies.

And for all the mothers who wanted to, but just couldn't find the words.

This is for all the mothers who go hungry, so their children can eat.

For all the mothers who read "Goodnight, Moon" twice a night for a year. And then read it again. "Just one more time."

This is for all the mothers who taught their children to tie their shoelaces before they started school. And for all the mothers who opted for Velcro instead.

This is for all the mothers who teach their sons to cook and their daughters to sink a jump shot.

This is for every mother whose head turns automatically when a little voice calls "Mom?" in a crowd, even though they know their own offspring are at home -- or even away at college.

This is for all the mothers who sent their kids to school with stomach aches assuring them they'd be just fine once they got there, only to get a call from the school nurse an hour later asking them to please pick them up. Right away.

This is for mothers whose children have gone astray, who can't find the words to reach them.

This is for all the step-mothers who raised another woman's child or children, and gave their time, attention, and love... sometimes totally unappreciated!

For all the mothers who bite their lips until they bleed when their 14-year-olds dye their hair green.

For all the mothers of the victims of school shootings, and the mothers of those who did the shooting. For the mothers of the survivors, and the mothers who sat in front of their TVs in horror, hugging their child who just came home from school, safely.

This is for all the mothers who taught their children to be peaceful, and now pray they come home safely from a war.

What makes a good Mother anyway? Is it patience? Compassion? Broad hips? The ability to nurse a baby, cook dinner, and sew a button on a shirt, all at the same time? Or is it in her heart? Is it the ache you feel when you watch your son or daughter disappear down the street, walking to school alone for the very first time? The jolt that takes you from sleep to dread, from bed to crib at 2 A.M. to put your hand on the back of a sleeping baby? The panic, years later, that comes again at 2 A.M. when you just want to hear their key in the door and know they are safe again in your home? Or the need to flee from wherever you are and hug your child when you hear news of a fire, a car accident, a child dying?

The emotions of motherhood are universal and so our thoughts are for young mothers stumbling through diaper changes and sleep deprivation... And mature mothers learning to let go. For working mothers and stay-at-home mothers. Single mothers and married mothers. Mothers with money, mothers without.

This is for you all. For all of us. Hang in there. In the end we can only do the best we can.

Wednesday, May 4, 2011


It has been a slow week on the blog front! Not much going on. The weather has been nice (finally) so we've been out trying to work in the yard a bit. Travis is just starting to work on the sprinklers in the front yard, and I've been tilling. We are trying to get the dirt loosened & ready to grade. I absolutely love tilling! I listen to my i-Pod & away I go. I could spend all day out there. It is great exercise & my arms are getting toned from hauling the tiller around. Love it!

Here are a few pictures from our coloring Easter eggs. I have been playing with the settings on my camera & the pictures are coming out blurry. I need to work on that!