The Crew.

Eliana is really becoming my little buddy these days:) She has adjusted to the quiet mornings without her brothers and soaks up her time with me, playing or “helping.”
She could NOT get enough of Daddy when he was home yesterday. She wanted to be in his arms every chance she could get! That didn’t make it easy for him to get work done.

It doesn’t help that he’s a regular old softie where she is concerned;)

One of her favorite things to do this week is to walk around and around the house with either the one of the boy’s lunchboxes or her own and the Hot Wheels suitcase (carries cars.) It’s so cute! She says, “Bye! Goin’!”

She looked so stinkin’ cute with her hair up and her orange on yesterday:) We could possibly be biased. Maybe. She’s been counting a lot “Two, Fwee!” and trying to say so many words that sometimes I don’t quite catch what she’s saying. Some of her words sounds so similar and throw in the “W’s” for “R’s” and it’s pretty hard sometimes! She is growing up so fast…

I got these containers for the boys’ lunches yesterday and I just love them! A friend got them and told me about them. They are from Old Navy and just perfect for little portions! They fit nicely into the boys’ lunchboxes. Yesterday Samuel said, “Whyyyyy do we have to have vegetables every day?”

“Because I want you to be healthy and vegetables are good for you!” The end! Of course, they didn’t complain when I put spinach in their eggs yesterday morning or in their soup last night. So much progress in the last couple of years. Green isn’t so bad after all!

Zakkai did a watercolor painting of our family at school today. I asked him why there were only 4 of us and who was missing. He started to say that Daddy was missing and then changed his mind mid-sentence and said in typical imaginative Zakkai-fashion, “No, Eliana is missing. She knocked an icecicle over, ran out of the picture, jumped into your tummy and then came back out and was a baby!”

Maybe he will write children’s books someday…..After he gets home from his garbage man/engineer/train conductor/tree cutter/chef/pilot/astronaut job:)

Samuel is really struggling to get back into homework mode. I try to give him some time after school to run around with some friends before we head home for homework but it is such a struggle to get him to SIT DOWN and just get it over with! I know he’ll get into the routine, just like he did last year. I guess it’s hard after 3 months of freedom:)

I said, “Samuel, how do you feel about homework?” Ha!

While Samuel was finishing his homework prison sentence, Zakkai and Eliana were busy helping me wipe off the cabinets and dishwasher. Zakkai started it and Eliana quickly followed suit, wanting to be just like her beloved “Bwudder!” They make me smile;)

Happy Thursday!

Pancakes and Packs of Boys.

Peace and Quiet. It restores my soul. And my sanity.

Eliana and I are adjusting to the long, quiet mornings around here. She only asks for her “brudders” 60 times now and at least isn’t in tears over it anymore! She and I get a lot of cleaning/organizing done and some coloring, too, since that is her very favorite activity at the moment:)

Today I sat down about an hour before I had to leave to pick up the boys and felt the strong pull of sleep sucking me down. Would you believe my eyes closed 10 minutes before I had to leave?! And I didn’t wake up until my phone rang. I jerked awake, glanced at the clock (Twice) and ran up the stairs 2 at a time to snatch Eliana out of bed and rushed out the door. I half walked/half ran to school and we made it with a couple minutes to spare. Whew!

I think I need to take up running though. Those 4 1/2 blocks were brutal. Things jiggle that shouldn’t. My lungs were heaving and gasping for air and as I was running (okay, jogging) I was wondering why everything seemed to be going in slow motion when I was running (or jogging) so fast? Strange…

We need to work on a different afternoon routine around here. What we’ve started just isn’t working! We don’t have much time after school to unload bookbags, etc, check folders, do homework, have outside play time, eat dinner and go to bed. Unfortunately, I am not like the other neighborhood moms in that, I do not let my kids stay up til 9 or 10pm! I am a firm believer in early bedtimes and good rest for these very long school days!

And I now forgive my mom for all of those nights I stood with my nose plastered to my bedroom window, watching the neighborhood children play while it was still light out. I totally understand, Mom. Totally.

I finally cut the boys some slack and shooed them outside. It was out of total desperation because things were not going well. Our play rug was outside drying from our basement rain issues and the kids spotted it and next thing I knew, other kids brought out their play rugs, cars, ramps and whatnot and soon 3 kids became 4 and then 6 and then 7!

It was fun to look out back and see a big pack of boys playing with their hot wheels;) And it helped me do a little de-stressing. And then we had delicious apple-zucchini pancakes for dinner and I de-stressed a little more.

I’m easy to please, apparently! I highly recommend these pancakes, by the way. Highly. Check out my pancake recipe under the “recipe” category at the top of the page (Good Old Fashioned Pancakes). I tripled the recipe, ( so I could freeze some and we could have leftovers for breakfast) did a little white/whole wheat flour mix, added some diced apples, shredded zucchini, cinnamon and a splash of vanilla and they were GOOD!!

The funny thing? I guess we don’t make pancakes for breakfast very often because when I told Zakkai he could save his last pancake for breakfast, he said, “For breakfast?! You don’t eat pancakes for breakfast!”

Who knew?

School Days.

 Boy, life gets so busy once school begins! I’m sure it will seem like more of a routine after this week. So far, so good, though. The boys both seem to be enjoying school. When we walk home every afternoon, I have them each tell me 2 things about their day. They are more talkative on the way home when they can’t go anywhere rather than at home when friends come a’knockin’ at the door and their attention is diverted.

Today I learned that Zakkai had 2 recesses and that he learned 3 new friend’s names. All of them were girls:) From Samuel I learned that a girl from his class shared a cookie with him at lunch and that he waited to eat it until he got home so he could ask permission (high-five, boy!) and that he had music today, which he doesn’t love as much as art;)

Eliana and I pass the mornings playing, cleaning/organizing or running errands and then I relax while she naps!

Eliana has a 2nd spare pair of glasses that she usually doesn’t like but once Samuel showed her his new glasses, she decided to try on hers. She likes to wear them when she first wakes up and then we switch to her other pair (which I like a whole lot better!)

Eliana is just amazing us with how much she is growing and changing each day. She is talking SO much! Her new favorite thing is to say “Mommy (Or Daddy or Brudders), watch!” and then she’ll do some silly face or silly thing with her body. Can you tell she gets much attention?? She calls me “Mama”, “Mommy,” or “Mom,” which drives me crazy! How can a not even 2 year old call me “mom?!” I don’t even know where she heard it. What a goof.

She is really trying to put short sentences together like, “Mama, help” or “Take it” or “Have it” or “Shoe on” or something like, “Kai, see dat? Doddie (Doggie)!” She adores pointing out airplanes, dogs, squirrels, birds, trains and having us all look:) She also talks a lot about family that we have seen recently like, “Gugga” (Mugga) “Papa” “Gwamma” (Grandma) “Gweat” (Gma and Gpa Great), “K” (Auntie K) and even “Evyn” (Evelyn) for her new baby cousin. So fun to watch her start to remember people and communicate so well with us! She definitely knows how to get across what she wants/does not want.

Her bossy side is definitely coming through but she’s still melting our hearts giving kisses, asking for hugs and just being her sweet self!

 Here is Zakkai doing his first ever Kindergarten homework! He will definitely not be as easy as Samuel in homework compliance. It took at least 10 minutes to get him cooperate and come to the table and we had to have a meltdown in the middle (over something completely ridiculous!). It’s not like it was hard homework either; just a sheet “All About Me” where he gets to draw some pics of his family and name his favorite things. Silly boy.

The blue towel in the picture is one of the towels used to soak up water from our partially flooded basement. Yuck. It poured rain yesterday for a long, long time and I didn’t even think to check the basement because we haven’t had flooding issues for awhile but Ben briefly told me that it was the worst we’ve had yet before he darted off to catch the train this morning.

The water came clear under our basement stairs and got some pictures that Ben had stored under there, soak the boys’ play rug and some toys. I bleached the floor but didn’t have time to go through the stuff under the stairs.

Okay, actually I forgot. Guess that’s on my list for tomorrow!

I just got back from Samuel’s 2nd grade open house and just love his teacher. She’s very, very nice and talkative and really seems to enjoy feedback and communication with the parents. I think he’ll have a good year;)

Good night!

My Buddha Buddy.

When people who haven’t seen us in awhile comment on our kiddos, they don’t usually say too much about how much older Samuel looks or how big Eliana is getting; the first thing a lot of people notice is how much Zakkai grew up.

Zakkai was our sweet, chubby, buddha-bellied little buddy and suddenly his legs grew longer, his buddha shrunk, he grew a neck and he started looking like a boy.

Case in point:

                                                         (August 2011)

I came across this picture when I was looking for something the other day and I about cried! Yes, emotional me again:) (But just look at those short little legs and that sweet little grin!!)

But you see, I was already emotional. The fact that Zakkai is a kindergartner hit me hard on Friday. It’s been building all week within me. Ben was able to walk to school with us in the morning and the whole way back, the emotions hit me like a brick in the stomach.

When you’re child enters school full-time, you say good-bye to a lot of things about their childhood and suddenly they’re not fully “yours” anymore. You have to share them with a teacher and the world. You suddenly don’t have full control of what they are hearing or learning.

It hit me hard everyday last week that Zakkai wasn’t walking alongside me after dropping Samuel off, chattering a mile a minute about things that he saw or what his house will look like when he grows up or the jobs he will have.

I miss my buddy. I feel a lot of guilt over the mornings I had with him that I didn’t want to get down and drive cars or do puzzles. The mornings that I brushed him off or was short with him when he asked to do something. It’s really hard to let that go and not beat up on yourself. I have never claimed to be perfect and if you know me, then you know it’s true! But why, oh why, didn’t I take more advantage of the time that I had?!! I knew it was growing short. I knew our precious time before school starting was coming to a close. I knew.

I love my little boy so much and I feel like I’m fighting a battle within myself. One half grieving the loss of the first precious years of childhood and one half celebrating the excitement of what he is about to learn and become.

So please excuse me if I tear up when I tell you my little boy is in kindergarten. I’m not crazy. (Not too much, anyways). I just need a little time to come to terms with the fact that he’s growing up.

I’m sure I’ll be over it by the time he’s 25 or so….

More Glasses!

This morning we went to pick up Samuel’s new reading glasses, which he has anxiously been waiting for. We think he looks so cute in them, although apparently the days of “cute” are over and he would much rather be called handsome.

He, on the other hand, does not think he looks nice. He thinks he looks silly:( He is very worried about being made fun of in school. We have reminded him of all the people we know who have glasses (hello! Mommy, Daddy, Eliana….), including a girl in his class but he was in tears tonight;(

Any suggestions to make this easier would be welcome!!

Our budding scholar:) We think he looks so much like Ben in his glasses!


I have purposely been ignoring the weather, choosing to remain in air-conditioning-free bliss. Windows open, fresh air. Love it!

But I did notice today that it was getting warmer and warmer and finally when I was convinced I was having menopausal hot flashes at dinnertime, I checked and looks like we’re creeping our way up the 90s ladder towards 100 again.

YUCK and double yuck.

So back to air-conditioning we go. Sigh. Just when I was starting to dream of fall again.

Little Miss and I got to spend a whole day together today! She’s been out of sorts the past couple of mornings and I totally think she is in the adjustment period, too. Her beloved brothers have disappeared to that mystery place called school.

She loved posing for me today, saying “Chee!” everytime I pulled out the camera:) We read books together this morning and she “helped” me do some cleaning/organizing upstairs.

Which really means, finding new treasures and scattering them everywhere and pulling out what I just put away:)

The boys continue to be tired, as I knew they would be. Samuel gets a bit of a ‘tude when he is tired from school which I try to nip in the bud very quickly. His biggest complaint of the day? That he wasted one of his recesses standing in line at the tire swing and only got to swing for maybe “40 seconds.”

He got his first page of homework tonight but finished it pretty quickly so he could play outside. What a life!

Zakkai claims that he only gets “like 4 minutes” to eat lunch and therefore can’t finish. I happen to know that he is a slow eater because he’s very busy looking around him, soaking up every little detail. Guess smaller lunches is the way to go!

He jabbered the entire walk home about his day and most especially a very exciting event that happened. Apparently an old battery charger in their classroom started smoking and the teacher had to call the fire department and “2 ambliences, 2 fire trucks and 1 police car” showed up to take care of things. He’s pretty sure they sprayed some water all over while the kids were waiting outside:)

Then he told me that his class did some “work” afterwards but he couldn’t stop thinking about the fire trucks and the smoke.

He asked about 422 questions about smoke/fire alarms on the way home. The only thing that I could think was to say several times, “And you know that you’re not allowed to touch the fire alarms, right?! They are only for the firemen to touch or a teacher in an emergency.”

I do not want to get a call that my 5 year old called his own fire drill at school. Ha! Remember the “911 talk” we had last year and how you all were waiting for me to tell you that the police showed up at our door randomly one day?

I think he’s going to love kindergarten:)

For now, we’re allll adjusting. I barely made it through my post last night before I was nodding off. In bed and sound asleep by 9pm.

I’m old. However, I’d love a good repeat right about now…..


Tired boys!

We survived a very long day today! My heart has completely melted over all the stories of these sweet newly minted kindergartners falling asleep every which way this afternoon:)

Zakkai fell sound asleep on our way to pick up our farm produce this afternoon, less than 5 minutes after getting in the car. I know it’s silly, but it made me a little teary to look back at him because it was such a big reminder of how little he still really is! He’s only 5.

As I found out at Z’s curriculum night tonight, one of his buddies fell asleep under a coffee table this afternoon:)

The boys seem really happy so far. Samuel is definitely more confident, as some of you have pointed out. He gained so much confidence last year and is handling the transition really well so far! Aside from some extra emotions today that come with the adjustment time period. He says he really likes his teacher and I introduced myself to her today and she was very nice. We’ll get to meet her and see his classroom on Monday night.

Tonight was Z’s classroom night. I helped Ben tuck our exhausted children (who claimed they weren’t very tired) into bed and skipped off to meet his teacher and see his room! His teacher is a very, very sweet lady (kind of weird to call a person your age a lady….what’s the other option? Girl? Woman?) who seems to really love the children and will hopefully help them blossom.

Zakkai sits at a green table with 4 other friends and has a big classroom with lots of neat teaching tools, toys and learning “stuff.” I think it’ll be a good year for him!


We got our farm produce today, as I mentioned and we are just loving it so much! We got tons and tons of tomatoes, which Ben described as some of the best he’s ever eaten:), basil, kale, some other green leafy stuff, garlic, bell peppers, hot peppers, a small watermelon, yellow squash and a very, very odd looking squash. I’m so glad we did this!

Now, I have to go join my exhausted children in slumber because I, too, feel like I could fall asleep under the coffee table;)

If I had one….