A large family, homeschooling, adoption, special needs, whatever strikes my fancy, sort of blog.

A large family, homeschooling, adoption, special needs, whatever strikes my fancy, sort of blog.

Saturday, July 30, 2016

Our Week with Melty Weather

It's been a busy week!  If you missed it, we went to the zoo on Monday.

Our small guests have been rediscovering all our preschool toys, which is fun.

We went to the park to run off some energy.

Hannah and Katie are getting braver about the swings.

Actually, they're pretty brave about everything!

Monkey see, monkey do.

Speaking of brave, Hannah was mastering the bucket stilts this week.  I'm so impressed with her.

Our little guests rediscovering all the preschool toys means that the other kids have been rediscovering all the preschool toys too.  Which is understandable for Hannah and Katie, who didn't have access to an abundance of toys when they were little.

It's a little bit more surprising to find my home grown 12 year old feeling the need to play with baby toys.

I'm going to call this summer math skills.  Those are baby food pouch lids.  Sorting, classifying, multiplying...

It's been such fun having these sweet little girls back with us.  Some of the clothes they wore here last year still fit, plus I've pulled a few things out of Katie's drawers (which needed to be gone through anyway).  This skirt?  Still a wee bit too big.

Sam and I used to take them grocery shopping together last year, and he was quite happy to revive that practice.  With two carts, I don't realize how much stuff we've got until we get to the checkout!  The little ones enjoyed the balloons we brought home.

I had to laugh at Katie's face when she woke up from nap time.  Blink, blink, they're in my room.

In other news, we're starting the back to school shopping around here.  Bri needed a new backpack after 2 years, and both Bri and Eli got at least some of their school uniforms.

Other than that, we're pretty much enjoying summer and trying not to think about school starting in less than a month.  I haven't bought curriculum yet, but I recently realized that I *could* get started with just what we already have.  Katie is not done with last year's math yet, so she's got a book to work on.  Hannah already started her 4th grade math book early, upon finishing the 3rd grade one.  And Jack is doing his math online.  All 3 kids still have work to do in last year's spelling books.  And we have plenty of science and social studies resources around here.  I was waiting for Paul to tell me when it was a good time to buy curriculum, but now I'm thinking we can just make do for a while.

Katie was so cute.  She asked me "Why do grown ups wear rings?"

Nice to see the bonnet I made for Brianna years ago still getting some play time.

This is "going to the splash park" hair.

We took this review item to the park to launch... only somebody (me!) put the batteries in the remote wrong, and the boys couldn't get it to work!  Eli figured out my mistake after we got home, and we rescheduled the launch for the next morning.  It's been 100* here lately, and I just couldn't go back outside that day to take pictures.

The little ones got to play in the splash park.  We usually avoid the splash park because Hannah and Katie can't get their prosthetics wet, so this was different for me.

After the splash pad, there was plenty of playing on the playgrounds.

It's funny to see how anything one does, the other wants to do, too.

Jack still barely fits in the baby swings.  I thought sure he was going to be stuck there, but he managed to get out.

It's always cool to me to see which siblings "click" in a big family.  Sam and Hannah are buddies, and Josiah and Katie are, too.

On the way home from the zoo, I challenged Katie to draw a bus.  She's getting quite creative in her drawings.  This morning, she showed me a zebra.

I pulled out a big coloring pad and let the Little Ones share a page.  I need to get out the Kwik Stix and see what they think of those!

I was cleaning up the school room a bit and came across this puzzle.  I told Katie to take it to her room, and the next thing I knew, she's assembled it!

I thought this week would have less running around, but that hasn't really been the case.  Eli's football practice and the big boys' workouts with the Marines and the Army have kept us up and about early every day.  All the running around has been good, though, since I've managed to go for walks at the park couple of times.  I'm down 15# since June 6, so I'm pretty happy about that.

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Friday, July 29, 2016

Zoo Trip

Our zoo membership is good until winter, so I took our little visitors to the zoo this week!

We were excited to see the jaguar this time, since he was hiding last time we were there.

Everybody checking out the big kitty.

November 2015, February and July 2016

I think my kids are getting tired of posing in front of the same statue every time.

The snow leopard is another favorite.  So majestic!

And such a fluffy tail!

I've mentioned before how Katie tells us which continent each animal comes from.  This time around Hannah (above) read the signs and shared interesting tidbits with us.

After lunch, we headed into the reptile house, where we saw snakes, lizard-ish things, frogs, and turtles.

There's a lizard-ish creature now.

After the reptile house, we ran over to the playground to burn off some energy before getting back in the van for the long ride home.

While we were playing, Katie said, "Hey Mom!  That kid has a brace like mine!"  It's been ages since she's had to wear her AFO, but she still remembers it.  The other mom and I shared a smile.

Miss Katie was keeper of the zoo key for this trip.  I always forget to bring it in with us, but this time, I put it on satin cord and had her wear it from home.  Not all of the boxes were working, and she got Spanish a couple times instead of English, but she had fun trying each box we ran across.  Hannah asked if she could be keeper next trip.

While we were at the playground, someone realized we'd missed the giraffes.  So we went to see the giraffes before we left.

I borrowed a stroller from a friend while our little visitors are here, but it's a bear to steer.  I'm either going to get great arms or stay home more often.

I like to bring sketch pads when we come to the zoo.  Katie was the only one who chose to draw while we were there.  She also drew pictures all the way home.

This was about the time the little ones started losing it.  It was past nap time, and it was getting hotter by the minute.

There was some discussion about riding zebras, which made me laugh.

There's a big metal giraffe sculpture up by the observation deck.

I admit, I'm grateful someone actually took a couple pictures with me in them.  I'm always the one behind the camera.  Now there's evidence I was really there.

I was really surprised our little guests didn't fall asleep on the way home!  I thought sure they would.  But we got home and not only did they crash out, but Katie and I did, too!  I think with little ones we need to keep expectations low and not try to see it all.

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