We started off the year with a snow shoeing expedition.
The first 5 minuets weren't too bad, but then the melt downs ensued. I don't think Miles stopped crying the ENTIRE time.
We had some 2nd thoughts about starting 2016 this way. The crying, whining, falling.
Luckily the scenery was gorgeous and we all survived.
And this kid was actually a dream boat, a slow, but happy hiker.
And how Ruby ends every winter adventure.
To end our 2 week break with Paul home we took the kids to Nickel City. It was loud, crazy, and busy, but the kids were in heaven.
and it made me remember how much I love Nickel City too, so we got the Rensinks to go back with us, no kids this time.
And yes, Paul won me a jackpot. True Love right there.
And yes, that guy there at the register, he's wearing the same toupee as he was when Emily and I used to rock the ticket games back in 2000.
We decided to give snow shoeing with the kids one last shot before we gave up on taking them anywhere in public again.
Since their bff's were there, they stepped up their game and there was very little whining involved.
Gosh, I love these mountains.
We then did a little sledding while Ruby and Julianne hung out in the protection of the car.
Perfect winter morning.
While most of January was spent indoors, we did spend a few more moments outdoors, when it wasn't completely freezing.
And there was even a day when the snow melted and the kids actually got to try their christmas presents outside.
Since we have experienced an actual winter this year, there have been many, many, many crazy hours stuck inside the house.
there's lots of star wars, fighting, wrestling, card games, and running around like wild animals.
And Ruby is still constantly getting into everything, climbing on everything, tackling everyone, and constantly has a nice bruise on her forehead.
We also all got croup, which sucked. But, it made for some pretty quiet afternoons, so I couldn't complain too much.
Being the good mom I am, I fell asleep while reading with Miles on one of our sick days and he snapped this sweet pic of me. If you know me, this means I was feeling pretty crappy, because I hate naps. Other January happenings:
Crew started Sunbeams.
Macey made her first Science Fair Project for the (not so simple) 3rd grade Simple Machine Fair.
M&M rocked their parent teacher conferences. Macey's teacher said she has a kind heart and is inclusive to everyone she meets.
and Miles is finally settling into kindergarten like a pro.
I might of shed a tear when I was expressing to his teacher how much I appreciated her kindness, patience, and gentle pushing she has given this kid. He is capable and she knows it, and I know my prayers have been answered as she has been able to navigate the difficult waters that are Miles.
We also got the privilege of attending the Provo City Center Temple
While we were far from the most reverent group there. I am grateful for the kind temple workers and the beauty and spirit my kids got to experience. Even if Miles was wearing one of Ruby's shoe covers as a hat the entire time. :)
And because some days are long, hard, and Paul works through bedtime a few days each week, sometimes a run to Sodalicious right before bedtime gives me the renewed energy I need to get through the last hours of the day without completely loosing it.
So, yay to surviving another January!
Back to School
These 2 have been back in school for a few weeks now and I am finally starting to adjust.
We did our annual back to school brown lunch bag dinner. Miles loved being one of the special kids. :)
Macey was all excitement for the start of 3rd grade
She DID NOT want me to drive her to school, she wanted to ride the bus. But I won, and got to drive her. Although I was instructed no pictures. :)
I was proud of myself for not crying after drop off, but that doesn't mean I wasn't devastated to loose my mini BFF.
This girl is growing up and is rocking 3rd grade already.
Now onto Miles.
He had his kindergarten assessment during Macey's first week of school. It was anything but smooth. There was crying, hiding, screaming, throwing of objects and a refusal to follow directions. Pretty much it was horrible.
The good thing is, after that circus act, they at least gave me the teacher I wanted him to have. :) And things have been mostly on the up from there.
Miles had lots of nervousness and excitement about the first day.
I was preparing myself for an all out wrestling match to get him to stay. But he did awesome and surprised me with how brave he was.
Not only did he get the best teacher, he also got some good friends in his class, which has made it so much easier on both of us.
I didn't shed any tears until the drive back home, which was a vast improvement from Macey's first day of kindergarten!
While he's had a few episodes in class, he has a great teacher who is willing to work with him and knows how capable he actually is.
Macey picks him up everyday after school and Mrs. Lee said she's never seen a brother love his sister like Miles loves Macey. :)
I am thankful for wonderful teachers who love, teach, and take care of my kids when I can't be with them.
School's out for summer
It has been an amazing school year for these two.
Let's start with Miles
. This kid has loved every minute of preschool. Last year he always talked about how Miss Karli was his best friend, but this year, he actually made friends in his class!! Although Miss Karli was still in the top five. :)
He pretty much had the best preschool teacher ever and I'm sure I'll be calling her next year crying and asking for advice. She's just one of those teachers that was able to see Miles for who he really was and was able to work with and motivate him in the most positive way possible.
I seriously almost cried at the parent teacher conference having to say goodbye to her and having the fear that he might not be as lucky in the teacher department next year.
We are also devastated to be done with Talking Time.
Miles' speech has come so far from when we started almost 2 years ago. Once again he had some of the best teachers ever and I will miss them. They never got frustrated with him and just worked and worked to find out the best way to motivate and get him to perform at his full potential.
He is so ready for kindergarten thanks to these 3 amazing teachers and is always talking about how he needs to read and do his homework this summer cause he's going to be a kindergartner. :)
I have tons of anxiety about how he will do next year in a public school setting, but I've already met with the principal to discuss his needs and I really feel like they are willing to work with us! But really, who couldn't love this kid?!?
I CANNOT believe Macey
will be a third grader! I of course shed a few tears after dropping her off on the last day of second grade.
She has grown so much this year, made lots of new friends, kept her love for school and already misses it, one week into summer. Plus, the clothes she wore on the first day of school don't even fit her anymore. :(
I'm am over joyed to have her home with me for the whole summer though and I guess I'll just have to make sure we have lots of fun, so she won't miss her school friends too much.
I also have to document some of things I did for Teacher Appreciation Week. It was a crazy couple weeks getting ready, but I think it all turned out and I hope the teachers felt the love.
We celebrated school getting out by meeting some of our friends at our favorite park (meaning no swings) on the last day of school.
And then ended the day with our first neighborhood movie night.
it's a good thing I love summer so much, or I might still be crying over the fact that these kids won't stop growing.
I have officially moved passed my summer mourning period and have come to accept and, possibly, love this back to schoolness.
One of the best things about school starting up, is some of our favorite places are much less chaotic and much more manageable.
I still of course loose Miles from time to time, but it's much easier to find him now.
With less people we've been able to discover some new favorite things at The Museum of Natural Curiosity
. Such as the bank tube delivery thing in Kidopolis.
And Crew actually gets to hang out in the baby water area, as it is no longer full of babies.
I am LOVING the variety of weather that has accompanied September
We've still had plenty of hot
But even more perfect 70 degree
days, where can actually play at the park and in our backyard without feeling like we will die of heat exhaustion.
And there's really nothing better than having all my kids in one place! Yep, I'm old.
Now that it isn't 100 degrees out in the evening, we've been letting Crew go on real scooter rides. He cracks me up cruising with the big kids and actually doing a decent job of staying with M&M.
And we've of course soaked up our beginning of fall storms
One particularly rainy day we headed up to one of our favorite places to get out some energy.
Crew got to ride the ferris wheel for the first time and he loved it. I loved how he yelled "hi" and waved at me everytime they passed.
I also took just Macey and Miles to Chalk The Block
at The Riverwoods. It was shockingly much easier to maneuver the crowds without a stroller and a bolting toddler.
And seriously those mountains, I really have grown to love them.
They of course had to get their hair chalked!
We've been busy with lots of back to school
activities. M&M's favorite being Macey's school carnival. We started with all 6 of us there, but Crew was being less than cooperative (meaning completely awful). So, Paul took the littles home, while I stayed with the more manageable 2 of the moment.
Speaking of school, this girl is LOVING 2nd grade
She is pretty much the perfect older sister and loves playing the part. Heavenly Father knew what he was doing giving her to me first.
I went out to read a book on the porch one evening and I caught Macey spinning and singing in the grass. Made me happy to see she isn't grown up, just yet. Miles
has even been more enjoyable since school started.
It's been fun getting to hang out with just him during naptime.
And with Macey gone, he continues to step up his big brother game.
There is never a dull moment with him.
We are back in full swing with Talking Time
. I am the "mean" mom that won't do the cutting or tracing for their kid. As a result, Miles has noticed that his art projects look drastically different from his classmates. He now refers to them as Monsters. For example, here is Monster Pete the Cat. It's pretty funny.Crew
continues to keep me on my toes, like a 2 year old should. We are in full swing terrible twos around here. Lots of whining, crying, temper tantrums, and mischievousness. Like I always say, it's a good thing he's cute.
And then there's Ruby
. I don't know how much longer it will last, but man, this girl is pretty close to perfect.
It has become very difficult for me to drag myself out of bed each morning to start my day. But she makes her part easy. Every morning when I go to get her up, she lights up the moment you walk in. There's no whining or crying, even though she hasn't eaten in 12 hours. Only smiling and cooing.
Once again Heavenly Father knew what he was doing giving me this baby last.
While most days I feel like I am barely surviving, I have been trying to soak in those little happy moments to get me through.
Like when all 4 are laughing and playing together for those 45 seconds. And the realization that they are all mine!
And stolen moments with Paul. Like this post school drop off breakfast, after some long work days.
And the fact that my desire to do projects is slowly
returning! PTA teacher birthday presents.
Now I've got to get busy on Halloween Costumes
Back to School
I can be in denial no longer. The new school year has begun!
We had our annual brown bag back to school dinner. M&M loved it. Miles made sure "one of the special kids" got to say the prayer.
Every year I go through my books and pick a few of my favorites to read those first few days of school. You know, to remind them to be brave, nice, grateful, and of course remind them that they are loved. Macey
Macey started 2nd grade
!! 2nd grade, as in the grade I used to teach!! I knew this day would come, but not this fast.
There was very little apprehension from her this year. She's a pro at the school thing now.
I of course cried the whole drive home from dropping her off.
This year was easier on Miles too. But man, these 2 just love each other and rarely fight. Some days are especially long for him as he waits for school to get out and homework to get done.
This picture says it all.
Macey also lucked out and got 2 of her favorite friends in her class this year.
It's going to be another great year. And as Macey keeps telling me, "Mom, I'm in your favorite grade now!"
It's always hard for me to adjust to having Macey gone, since she's such a help with the boys. And I was seriously dreading, having nightmares, about how we would survive any outing without her.
After we dropped her off, we went to the library and Miles said "Mom, I be your big helper now!". And he really was! Crew is a bolter, but Miles kept hold of his hand for me when I couldn't. He entertained Crew while I checked out our books. And he even watched Ruby in the stroller when I had to change Crew's diaper.
And he is always the first to Ruby's side when she starts crying, which 90% of the time she stops the moment she sees him.
Speaking of Miles
, he started preschool today.
He is in the same preschool as last year, so it was all excitement and no nerves. Plus, he's been dying to wear this shirt ever since i bought it last month.
He has been missing Miss Karli all summer and has been counting down the days till he could give her a big hug. I still remember how heart wrenching it was on the first day of school last year to pry a crying Miles off of me and hand him over to Karli. It was no problem this year.
The best moment though was at pick up.
Miss Karli was leading the kids out to sit on the grass to wait for their parents. I'm watching as all the kids walk out with their arms folded and trying to stay in a line, searching for Miles. I don't see him. Then all of a sudden a shoeless child with a backpack over his face comes running through the gate. Oh my gosh, it was hilarious. I just love this kid.
I don't know why they think it's ok to keep growing, but they claim they can't help it.
And Crew was not to be left out. While taking Miles' picture this morning he comes running over to me, "My picture too, Mama!" Good thing I still get him all to myself for another few years.
And this girl, of course, too.