10 Years Together

August 30, 2017

D and I celebrated our 10 year anniversary this year!  While our actual anniversary fell over the Labor Day holiday, we took advantage of Sky and Fire's trip to their grandparents to spend a weekend away.  A friend from church watched Water and Earth for us and we spent two days talking, eating, seeing movies, hiking, talking, sleeping, reading, talking, watching TV, relaxing and talking.  It was so relaxing to spend time with just each other, with no kids to worry about.  To be able to have long lunches or read a book without interruption.  We came home on Sunday refreshed and ready to be parents again.

Catching Up: Summer Fun

August 27, 2017

Just a random collection of photos from the rest of our summer...
   Six kids ages 1 to 8, all waiting for the movie to start. 
Yup, that's the best picture I could get.
We got tickets to the local movie theaters summer movie program and I think we'll do it again next year- it was a nice, cool way to kill a hot desert morning.

Catching Up: Flagstaff Staycation

August 25, 2017

   We had nothing planned for the week before Sky and Fire went to their grandparents house in Kansas so when D told me that he was going to be working overtime, the kids and I decided to head up to Flagstaff a few days early to see the sights and enjoy a little cooler weather.
   Sky thought that we needed a picture of Earth too...

Eclipse Watching With Toddlers

August 23, 2017

The big eclipse was Monday and while we weren't in the totality here in Arizona, I still wanted to try and see a little bit of it.  Monday is our day to meet our adoption group friends at a neighborhood playground and since none of us had the special glasses, we tried using a pin hole camera to view the sun.  I was surprised by how well it worked!  The kids, all under 4, were unimpressed and spent most of the time grabbing the paper from each other and running around the playground.  Well, at least we tried!

  Did you get to see the eclipse?  What did you think of it?

Happy Birthday Water!

August 22, 2017

 This super boy is 3!

Catching Up: Picking Peaches

August 20, 2017

Arizona isn't really known for farming but fruit and nut trees do well here and earlier this summer we drove up to Wilcox to pick peaches. 
  The kids alternated between riding in the wagon and racing ahead to find trees with ripe fruit

Preschool Home School

August 18, 2017

  In an effort to save a little money, D and I decided that I would do preschool with Water at home for now, rather than enrolling him in some place this fall like we'd originally talked about.  This is a big departure for us because although I've a little bit of homeschool with him before and I taught Sky for pre-k when there wasn't a teacher on island, we've always relied on others to teach the kids.  Don't get me wrong, I love my kids and I love spending time with them but homeschooling has never been a good option for us since there's always been adoption/developmental baggage involved in our relationships.  Since Water and I don't have any of that between us, we don't butt heads and working together is working out so far.
  I had originally planned on buying the Alpha and Omega preschool curriculum from a friend but that's on hold for now so I'm using the internet to find learning activities for him and sometimes making them up on my own. Since Water can already recognize most of the letter of the alphabet, his numbers through 10, and knows his shapes and colors, I'm working with him on letter sounds, counting skills, and fine motor skills.
  This week, we're working on the letter K:

Catching Up: Tucson Train Museum

August 16, 2017

  What is it about boys and trains?  Sky loves them too but not the same way that the boys do.  They love everything about them: the noise, the size, the speed.  I've taken them to the toy train museum here in Tucson but one Saturday when Sky was out with D, I decided to take them to see the real thing at the Southern Arizona Transportation Museum.  I didn't get a lot of pictures (Earth is really on the run these days!) but it was the perfect place for little kids who love trains.

The restored engine was open and the boys got to blow the whistle and try all the knobs and levers.

Catching up: 4 Kids, 1 Mom, and the Grand Canyon

August 15, 2017

 We had this week off between camps and VBS.  It was supposed to be a slow one spent here in town and at home but when some good friends from Kwajalein messaged to say they would be passing through the Grand Canyon on their honeymoon road trip and asked if we could meet them there, I looked at that empty calendar and thought, "Why not?!"


Catching Up: A Night at the Fair

August 13, 2017

I love that we're making new traditions here for our family!  It looks like one of them is going to be going to the county fair.  We went last year and had a blast and this year was even more fun.

Catching up: Fire's Pre-K Graduation

August 11, 2017

  While I was sorting through my drafts to start on my summer catch-up posts, I found this one on Fire's Pre-K graduation.  I can't believe I never got this posted! 
 I'm so proud of Fire!  We celebrated his graduation from pre-k this week, a graduation we thought he wasn't going to have since he was so far behind academically.  Fire made so much progress during his pre-k year, thanks entirely to his teachers.  They set high expectations for him and he flourished.  I'm so thankful for all their hard work and that Fire was able to make so much progress in such a short amount of time.
 Fire's "formal" graduation picture

Cutting Water's Hair

August 9, 2017

I love Water's hair. It's so soft and he has such beautiful curls.  I've been letting it grow out for almost a year because I wanted to see if how longer hair suited his face (and because I love his curls!).  We'd found a hair routine that worked: co-wash and comb and then deep condition and re-curl at bath time, and then alternating with a leave-in deep conditioner or curl cream for everyday styling.  When I could get him to sit still for it all, his curls looked amazing:

First Day of School!

August 7, 2017

  Summer is officially over.  And, somewhat surprisingly, we survived- no, we did more than survive.  My friends, we killed summer this year!  We did space camp, art camp, soccer camp, went camping at the Grand Canyon, stay-cationed in Flagstaff, spent a week at Grandma and Grandpa's house, lived at the pool, had play dates, and sleepovers.  There was more bickering on the kids' part and more yelling on my part than I would have liked but overall, it was a great summer.  I'll try to get to the catch-up posts soon but in the mean time, here are this year's back to school pictures:
 Just kidding!  This one has two more years at home before he starts Kindergarten.
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