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Saturday, February 28, 2015

TGIANFA (Thank God it's almost not February anymore!)

 
What have we been up to? A little of this. Looks like even Lego people have cabin fever... not sure what's happening here. If you want to ask Carrie, I'm sure you'll get a dissertation.
 
A little of that. Grandmama came to visit for a few days. She ended up coming a day early because the weather was supposed to be rotten on her travel day, and it sure was, so we got a freebie out of her! It feels like a long time ago already, but she was here for Valentine's weekend. It was cold and miserable, just like almost every other day in February, so don't get me started. She was our sunshine.

 
Yes, Damon spends a lot of time in his pajamas. I've been able to tell just by the laundry if we've had a lot of school during a certain week or not because the boys will just stay in pjs all day if they don't... my loads have been fewer jeans and lots and lots of Spiderman, dinosaurs, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, aliens, and other assorted sleepwear.

 
There's been LOTS of Minecrafting going on, which keeps them quiet-ish and busy, or loud-ish and squabbling, depending on who is sneaking into whom's world or whatever. That's another discourse right there. Ask them. I don't want to know.

 
There's been lots of this going on inside because this is what it looks like outside:


 
Yes, that blob on the porch is Triskal looking pitiful, forgetting she has a double and waterproof coat and wanting to be let back inside. She DID lay down in the snow and enjoyed it last Saturday and Sunday when Dada and I were out pruning our apple trees, which some sadist somewhere said needs to be done in the winter. Whatever. It was above freezing and the sun felt warm, so it was okay. I think we're supposed to see above freezing temps tomorrow, also, along with the one to three to six to ten inches various places are predicting. Yes, again.
 
We have been hearing tons more birds, which is wonderful. For whatever reason, crows have been lustily calling to each other and I spotted this big guy/gal supervising the field behind our house. Not sure what it is since he/she was feeling uncooperative and wouldn't turn around, but I'm guessing hawk?


 
I can't begin to tell you how ecstatic I am that today is the last day of February. I'm hoping for a merciful March. I'm tired of wearing two pairs of socks, two pairs of pants, and more than one shirt every day. And that's when I'm INSIDE.
 
Carrie's had three days of the PARCC testing in the last week. I think they're done with the English/Language Arts segments at this point. Still to come are Math and Social Studies. She hasn't been fussed about them, and secretly I think she's glad to have them as it means they're less likely to cancel or delay school since the tests are such a big deal. This kid LOVES school. She has been known to cry on snow days. Truly a Hermione.
 
Time to start dinner, so ta ta for now!

Sunday, February 15, 2015

Sunsets and cookies

 
I am certainly not the photographer my brother is, but I tried to get a sunset that was spectacular to my eyes... it's pretty here in the photo but certainly not as vibrant as we saw it. Carrie came outside with me and we "ooh"ed and "ahh"ed as it deepened.
 


We had a funny literacy moment as I was driving Damon home from preschool. We were stopped in traffic right beside Insomnia Cookies, which is a cookie shop which will deliver cookies and milk until 3 AM. Can I just pause there and rejoice? What fun! They claim they can be for study sessions, late night meetings, whatever. Fabulous idea. And I must have way more self control than I thought I possessed, because I have yet to set foot in there AND I haven't called. Yay me! Anyway.

Their neon sign was lighting up repeatedly, and I hear from the backseat, "O-P-E-N... cookies!" Cracked me right up. I pointed out that under the chocolate chip crescent moon logo that "C-O-O-K-I-E-S" spelled cookies and "O-P-E-N" spells open. It was a great discussion and I love that he's looking around and figuring things out. Reading is such an amazing process, to me anyway, and I am excited that he's starting that journey.

Thing Three

 
Thing Three has started karate. I can't remember if I said that already or not. He had his two mini lessons and has joined the regular class. A big part of martial arts is continual growth in strength and knowledge. Here they are strengthening their bodies with jumping jacks:
 
 
I'm sure having older siblings also in karate has helped with his stance as he can watch them in their class, but check out that form. Hehe!

 
Pushups help with, "getting stronger, Sir!" I love that they call that back to him when he says, "down for pushups" or "down for situps"... how come they don't respond with, "growing character, Ma'am" when I tell them, "time to clean"?



 
This is a knife hand something or other, I think...

 
All in all, he is fun to watch and HE is having fun. He was really nervous and in tears before his first lesson, but warmed up well and enthusiastically tackled everything he was presented. He was so excited to be able to join the big class! I can't wait for him to get his gi, or uniform, because then he'll really feel like he's part of the crew.
 
If you come visit, we'll have to take you to class. Good, clean entertainment. ;)

Wednesday, February 04, 2015

Might as well just homeschool

Once again, we have no school. And it's still coming down. And we need to leave for karate in an hour. Bah, winter.

Damon decided to play outside two days ago. He wasn't fazed that he was out there by himself. He gleefully pelted snowballs all over the place. You can probably tell from the pictures that I was taking them INSIDE. I do enough shoveling that I didn't want to be out there again unless I absolutely had to be.



 
Well, today his sister joined him. I've mentioned before about the drifts. Here he is getting stuck in one...
 


 
Not sure what the dramatic flip was all about.
 
And not sure what's happening here, either, but it looks like CPR.
 

 
And now hauling his body off into the woods.

 
Just kidding!
 
Now scroll through these last few quick to see what it looked like in real life. I laughed so hard I had to put the camera down.




Monday, February 02, 2015

Fired

 
Apparently it is time once again for my annual Groundhog's Day Rant. Because of where I grew up, THE groundhog will always be Punxsutawney Phil, who predicted 6 more weeks of winter. Some imposter from Staten Island, Chuck, forecasted an early spring. Clearly he has not been paying attention. This is Cheeky Beaky, freezy: 
 

 
The kids, who once again have no school, were admiring how much snow this tiny tree was holding up this morning.
 

 
The snow, even last night before bed, is over the tops of my boots...



If you look at the lower deck, you can see how high the snow is. Kind of deceiving though, because the wind was blowing from the north for a change and these decks are on the back of the house so it shielded them somewhat...




 
I do love trees. Even trees with snow on them.
 
And here's the backside of Lalaith Havens. I don't think we've done any pictures of that yet.
 
Notice anything wrong?
 
All that virgin snow, and my bootprints are the only ones marring it. What is WRONG with these children? One word.
 
Minecraft.


 
 
I'm not sure if you can tell from these tiny pictures, so you may need to click on them to see closer, but the dunes were impressive. You can see grass poking out along a wide swath behind where our woodpile is. But right behind the house the drifts are mid-calf. I'm so glad we don't have tiny dogs, (for lots of reasons), because they'd have been lost just on the deck, hehe!

 
I guess since the groundhogs can't agree on what's happening, I should just resign myself to another winter of the kids being home more than being in school, more shoveling, and more frigidity. Is that even a word? It should be.
 
Be safe digging out, and stay warm. I wonder how long it'll be before Cheeky Beaky is thawed out...