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.

Friday, July 20, 2018

Early July

Summer is half over, can you believe it?  Where did the time go?

Tuzi bunny enjoys knocking things over when the kids build them.  He also likes dried kiwi treats.  Unfortunately, bunnies have a well deserved reputation for chewing cords, and when he was out, he got the DSL cord.  I'm glad we had a spare on hand. 

Packing up the girls to spend a week in Nevada was a good excuse for me to use my handy packing cubes (affiliate link).  I seriously love these things.  They've been great for my China trips and my vacation to Hawaii.

This year was the first summer in quite a while that the whole family did not go to Nevada.  Paul drove Jack, Hannah, and Katie to meet up with family there, and they stayed without us.  He then continued on to visit a friend in Las Vegas for a few days, while Josiah, Eli, and I stayed home.

Since it was just the 3 of us, we took all the leaves out of the table and impersonated a small family.

One day, we decided we wanted pizza for lunch.  But not just any pizza.  Special pizza, only available in another city.  So we hopped in the van and drove and drove to get it.  When we got into Dixon, there were all these gorgeous sunflowers, and I couldn't resist getting a picture.

The pizza was amazing.  And we stopped at a little farm stand and got fresh saltwater taffy and alligator jerky before heading back home.  We got a little sidetracked on the way and ended up at Ikea.  I was shocked to discover that the last time my boys had been to Ikea they were still little enough for Play Care, and they'd never actually wandered the store before.  We had a blast together!  I always feel very safe when I walk between my two big, tall bodyguards boys.

Eli has taken up grilling.  For 4th of July, he made bacon wrapped hot dogs, and I threw on a couple of cute little steaks and some corn.

I think Paul was a little concerned about the boys and I being unsupervised on 4th of July, but we didn't burn anything down, so all's well that ends well.

Eli was really happy to not have to compete (much) to light off fireworks.

And we could even see some sky pyrotechnics from our house.

Josiah lit off a few things, but mostly he and I sat in the driveway and watched Eli enjoy himself. 

The fireworks didn't seem to bother the bunny, which was nice. 

Picking up the kids in Reno, after their week with the grandparents. 

The Donner Lake potty stop on the way home. 

Miss Hannah got her Summer Reading Program medal.  Not a lot in the way of prizes this year. 

Saw a dreadful video on Facebook showing people's total lack of geography skills.  Was horrified enough to pull out a map puzzle and spread it on the table, thinking I'd have the girls assemble it for some low key summer practice. 

Jack completed the world puzzle, and then went on to do the North America one, as well. 

School starts in like 5 weeks.  I recently went through Jack, Hannah, and Katie's school uniforms, pulling out anything too small for them.  Old Navy had polos on sale for $3 bucks, so I filled in some gaps there.  Primary is one of my favorite resources for Hannah & Katie, so I filled in a few more gaps there, and now the younger 3 kids are all ready for BTS.  Eli is in man sizes, so his stuff doesn't really go on sale.  ...I wonder if he can make it through the first 2 weeks of school on what he already has, so I can use my September Super Cash to get his uniforms? 

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Our First Foster Kittens

Shortly after 4th of July, I brought home our first batch of foster kittens from SPCA.  They were 22 days old. 

When I started volunteering there, Paul told me, "Don't bring anything home."  We now have a bunny and 5 temporary cats.  I tell him things could be worse.  At least I didn't volunteer at a preschool.

This is Neptune.  She's a good mama kitty.  And she's a sweet cat.  I really like her.

We're going with a "space" theme for this litter (hence naming mama kitty Neptune).

The only problem is, we can't really tell these 3 black kittens apart yet.

This is Pluto.  Other names in the running for the black kittens are Sputnik, Stella, Rocket, and Comet.

I thought an empty box would make it easier to get a picture of all the kittens together.  Ha.  Shows how little I know.

We're having a fabulous time with these tiny furballs.

They're not only adorable, they're quite entertaining, too.

From running smack into a wall to snuggling up against me and crashing out, it's always fun to see what they'll do next.

They make great Instagram fodder, too.

And I'm in my element, getting kitty snuggles galore in the comfort of my own home.

Paul's not too crazy about the whole idea, but he agreed to host one batch to give it a shot.  I'm hoping they win him over.

They play hard, and then they crash out and snooze for a while.

I'm so going to be visiting Neptune when she's on the adoption floor.  She's so soft and such a nice cat.  She hasn't had a problem with us handling the kittens at all, which surprised me.

So many naps.

Everything is a toy, even the box they all wanted *out* of a few days ago, when it was my idea.  

So far, this has been a really neat experience for our family. 

Brianna and Abby came over to meet the lil rascals. 

Guys, if you're going to win Paul over, you probably shouldn't destroy his books. 

I'd like to foster at least one more batch after this one.  Eli wants a gray kitten (he's already got a name picked out), and I think it would be special to have it from a very early age like these guys. 

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Thursday, July 19, 2018

Summer Happenings

These are all photos from June.  

I missed having the kids around all the time during the school year.  It's been nice to have them around the house again.  But Katie's not a fan of sitting around the house.  She much prefers to be out doing things.  So we have been doing little fun things, like farmer's market, our local pet store's 5th anniversary, and many trips to the library.

Of course there is some down time around the house, and it's always fun to see what we can come up with to do, such as this hot wheels street Katie played with for quite a while.

I decided the front room needed a patriotic makeover, so I took the girls to Hobby Lobby for some flowers, ribbon, and other little touches.  (Dog tags sign was a Zulily find.)

The boys are loving having nothing to do all day.  Eli has taught Jack how to lift, and now they disappear off to the weight bench in the garage on a regular basis.

I took Eli with me to get Paul a new grill for Father's Day, and while we were wandering the aisles at Lowe's, he said, "Look, Mom, millennial snacks!"  He keeps me laughing.

I hauled a bunch of our stuff to a curriculum sale and made about $80 bucks.  Not bad for a day's work, but I didn't get rid of nearly enough of it.  I was going to do another sale at the end of this month, but meh.

This actually belongs with the "sprucing up the living room" bit above.  I bought a 3 hole picture frame and some military medallions on Amazon.

This is what I turned it into.  My own little Air Force, Marines, Army trio.

One Sunday, we had a goodbye picnic for Brianna at the park.

Eli was ready to leaf.

But before we went, I had Boy get a family picture of us.

Aren't they cute?

And once Brianna's room was all emptied out, it was time to paint.

I don't have an "after" picture to show, but we chose a very faint gray.

It turned out really nice, and Josiah moved upstairs once it was finished.

It's nice when we can run everybody through the dentist office during the summer, without scheduling around school.

Took the older kids bowling.  Eli's shoes next to Miss Adorable's shoes just made me smile.

Last year, there was a "kids bowl free" thing here, and we went several times over the summer.

Our location isn't participating this year, which is a bummer, but hopefully we'll make the time to go at least one more time before school starts.

I haven't really figured out a pattern to what Tuzi likes and doesn't like.  He plays with this tape dispenser, while ignoring an actual rabbit toy.  He also likes TP tubes and wooden blocks.

Took the girls to a STEM activity at the library.  They painted Kokeshi dolls.

Had a girls' lunch out with Heather and Brianna (Hannah took the picture for me).

Eli has finished his assigned summer reading book, and is working on online driver's ed so he can hopefully get his permit next month.

I took some pictures of Tuzi washing (he's very tidy) and caught this one that looks like he's face palming.  It makes me laugh.

Jack's trap shooting pins for this year.

I got to go watch him at his very last shoot of the season.

Our library's summer reading program is online, which is handy.  Jack, Hannah, and Katie all got their free books at the library.  I got my tote and a coupon for a free book at Book Den.

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