"Lo, Children Are An Heritage of the LORD: and the Fruit of the Womb is His Reward" - Psalm 127:3

Monday, August 27, 2012

Camping Out

 This kid is such a clown.  Anything that can be used as a hat will be.  And lots of goofy faces to go with it.

 I think he has a future as a ringmaster at a circus ... or a clown. :)  He keeps us in stitches anyway.

 The eight year old has been at it again with the Etch-a-Sketch.  This is a stegosaurus and a T-Rex.

 And here is a moose and a bear.

 The one year old has become impossible to contain.  He found this combine and was pushing it around in circles all over the room.  It makes a really obnoxious noise when you push it, so that's what got him started.  Now he drives all sorts of cars around, always using his right foot instead of his knee.  It kind of works as a natural way to go in circles ;)

 He can get wherever he wants to with the walker too.  Won't be long before he'll let go and start running.

Now, on to the camping trip...
 So this is how I woke up Saturday morning... at 7 am.  This little guy didn't like the pack and play and joined me in my tiny little twin bed at 2:30 a.m.

 He was all smiles and abunant energy at 7, then finally went back to sleep until about 9:30.

 I had to open the blind next to my bed because he was trying to tear it down.  He really thought it was fun to look out the window - and bang on it.  I can't believe he didn't wake up everyone else.  But they were all determined to sleep in.  We got a late start and didn't get to the campground until 9:30, and didn't get everything set up and everyone in bed until 11:30.

 There was a lot to explore in the camper - like the cord on my sleeping bag.

 I made a quick run to town to go to the post office and bank, then came back up to make breakfast over the campfire - pancakes, bacon, eggs and hash browns.

See the full mouths?  :)  I even made the baby a couple gluten free pancakes. He had a little packet of peaches too.

 Where's Waldo?  er, our three year old.  Can you spot him?  This is what it was like all around our campsite - lots of trees, and if you look past those, you'll see the lake.  It was a great spot.  We had shade all day.

 There he is, off exploring.

 We had a clearing where people sometimes put tents that was fairly level, which was in the shade all day, so we set up our chairs there.

 We moved the pack and play outside for the day.

  but also had a heavy fleece blanket on the ground for the baby to play on.

 He had a great time being outdoors.

 The lake was just a short walk down the path from our camper.

 The eight year old spent the whole day - literally - from after breakfast until dinner time - playing in the lake.

 We had a nice cove hear us with a sandy beach to play on.

 As you can see, the baby didn't stay on the blanket :)  He was following me down the path to the lake.

 He has a way of crawling now that he doesn't ever get his knees on the ground.  He crawls this way most of the time, but always when he's outside.  Guess those knees are a little tender.  Plus with it being summer, he has no padding on them, so I guess it's just more comfortable to be up on his feet.

 The kids did stop playing long enough to have some lunch - burgers for my husband and eight year old and a hot dog for the three year old, plus baked beans, suddenly pasta salad and carrot sticks with ranch.

 We saw a lot of little animals too.  They are not at all afraid of people. This bird got into a fight with a chipmunk over the 3 year old's leftover hotdog bun.

 I had a lot of fun taking pictures of the chipmunks, and luring them in for a close-up shot.

 There were tons of them around.  At one point, we had six of them in view at once.

 This here is the reason they came around.  Guess that's one bonus to having a messy eater ... and to camping out where I don't have to sweep :)

 The baby had ground beef, carrots and peas for lunch, which he greatly enjoyed.

 The other thing we had was millions of yellow jackets.  They didn't seem too interested in stinging us, but whenever the food came out, they came swarming in.  They were especially attracted to the meat.

 Later in the day a bunch of kids showed up in the cove with the sandy beach.  They were actually neighbors of ours from across the street.  They brought their bumper boats.  Those look like a lot of fun ... think bumper cars with inner tubes.

 It was nice to have the lake so close.  We would walk down to it every once in awhile to check on the eight year old, or to watch the kids in the bumper boats ... or in my husband's case, to go fishing.

 There weren't a lot of flowers out.  Just this little one was all I noticed (though I didn't really go looking for them.  This one was just along the path.  The Oregon grapes are perfectly ripe for the picking, but I don't think I'll bother with them this year.  We still have an ice cream bucket of juice in the freezer from last year, and jelly left over as well.  I just don't think I have the time for them this year.  I'm thinking about checking on the chokecherries, since we don't have any of that juice saved up, but we'll see.

 Papa and Bugga camped in the spot next to us.  It was fun to have dinner with them and to be able to visit throughout the day. 

 Dinner Saturday night was steak (always a favorite).  The boys had hot dogs, and I had zucchini with mine.  Everyone else had coleslaw, baked beans, pasta salad, dutch oven potatoes and garlic bread.

 The eight year old was horribly sunburned by this point, and didn't eat much of anything.  It was just his shoulders and back, which is thankfully much better now.

 My husband always gets the job of cooking the steaks :)

 Sunday morning we got up bright and early so we could have showers at home before church.  Do you like our sleeping arrangements?  The eight year old has the top bunk, the three year old sleeps on the fold-down table, and the baby has his pack and play, which he thankfully stayed in all night Saturday night. 

After church, we had the boat club picnic to attend in town (salmon and crab legs, among other goodies) and then we headed back up to camp for the afternoon.  We grilled hamburgers and hot dogs for dinner, then packed up and came home.  It was a great weekend (but a lot more work than I had remembered - ha) and we're planning on camping out again next weekend - a long weekend with Labor Day.  I can't wait!

Monday, August 20, 2012

Walking Practice, My New Daycare Space, and My Latest Read

 This little man really wants to walk.  His grandma got him a walking toy for his birthday, but when that's not within easy reach, he'll grab whatever he can and scoot it across the linoleum.

 But he's not great at steering, so he runs into things.

 Then he screams and hollers and throws a fit.

 Until someone turns whatever he's pushing around.  So he can push it to the other end of the room, run into something else, and throw a fit...

 People have been asking me what I've been up to lately.  This is it.  I took all the living and dining room furniture out of our house and moved them into the garage.  I bought a bunch of fun rugs, and set things up for the daycare.  I still need to get some dividing bookshelves to separate the space a bit, because it looks a little empty in here, but it's much better than it was.  And, there are usually toys out and kids playing (as there were a few toys out in the picture here.  I snapped this pictures while the kids were having breakfast.)

 Here's a look toward the dining room.  Now I'm noticing all the toys and things that are making the place look sloppy.  Oh well, it's a daycare - it should look like kids play here, right?

 Pardon the blinding sun.  It was early morning.

 This rug is an old west town - fitting since our daycare is called Little Buckaroos.  We get the horses out to play on this rug.

 Of course we had to have a car rug too.  (When we play with these rugs, we usually pull them out from the wall so the kids can be all around them.)

 This is our story telling area - lots of stuffed animals to act out stories - and the rug to match.  The cabinet is our toy storage - sorted toys are in dish tubs.  The cover is felt so we can do flannelgraph stories.  I have the whole Betty Lukens felt set - which is for Bible stories - but there are great props and people that can fit any story.  I also have several other felt story pieces, and intend to make ABC's and numbers to play with there too.

 This is my command central - my record keeping space and printer, bookself and comfy chair.  We do story time and circle time on the rug in front of the chair.

 And this is our kid friendly table and chairs.  We have a bulletin board mounted on the wall, so we do all our crafts and preschool learning here.  The cots on the floor aren't usually stored there. I'm still trying to figure out where I want those stored.  They have been a little bit of everywhere so far.  They're kind of heavy and bulky, so I'm still trying to decide where to put them.

 This is where the napping takes place.  The baby usually goes in the bedroom, but this was the day we were assembling the cots, and he thought they were great fun to climb on.

 See how fun a nap cot can be?  He kept climbing up on it, crawling to the other end, climbing off, then turning around and repeating the whole process.  He thinks they're pretty fun to sit and bounce on too.  I don't let anyone else do that. ;)

 While everyone naps, the eight year old reads.  At least that's what he does in the summer - that or going out on his bike.  Come school days (very soon) he will be doing homeschool then.  With younger kids napping, I will be able to focus my attention on his lessons.  He will do independent work in the mornings.

 He had a little more help with his reading than he really needed.  The baby was trying to visit ... and steal his bookmark. :)  Brothers :)  The eight year old usually reads to him though, so I guess he figured he was needed when the book came out.

Speaking of books, this is the one I just finished.  It's the story of Dave Harper, a local Christian man who was paralized in an accident when he was 16.  He works at our library and has taught up at the Bible camp we help at - including teaching our eight year old at science camp.  So it was neat to read his story.  This is book one.  I'm in the middle of book two right now - Vanquishing the Void - which is the continuation of the story, and includes his testimony of how he got saved.  It's been a very interesting read.  This is the closest person I have known whose biography I have had the privilege of reading. It sure makes it more interesting when you really know the person.