Sunday, February 26, 2017

Green Green Green!

Ava loves Fun Dip. I used to love it when I was the one eating it, but now I see it as messy and just pure sugar that gets everywhere. Yuck. But, Ava got a color-changing packet for Valentine's Day, so she had it for a treat last weekend. The powder was blue, but when it got wet, it turned the prettiest shade of green! And then G thought it was fun to be sticking his tongue out, too, so he wanted me to get a pic of his very normal colored tongue. He's big into pictures now...always wanting to take them!

No tongues, he just wanted a pic with Mom!

Ava's been busy practicing for her music program, which is later this week. The theme is America, which I find to be timely, all political things considered. Ava volunteered to have a speaking part, so she's going to kick off one of the songs!  We've been practicing a lot recently...can't wait to see how things go!

G is super excited because this afternoon, he is going to his first birthday party for a little girl at his daycare. He's been talking about it for the last few weeks, and the other day, I think he was playing with the toys we got as her's best that the party day is finally here!

Scott's making great progress on the basement.  Last week, the wiring for the subpanel in the basement was completed, so now he can do the wiring in the rest of the basement.  He's been busy working on framing the family room this weekend.  The goal is to have a big chunk of the project finished in April.  I am patiently waiting for the time that I get to be involved in the fun part of the process...decorating!

It's pancake breakfast today...we can't wait for Scott to get back from the grocery store so we can eat.  YUM!

Sunday, February 19, 2017

I Love To Read!

February is all about reading at Ava's school. She has a monthly challenge to read at least 400 minutes a month, but in February, she's aiming for 1000 minutes! She's doing a fantastic job so far...I have the feeling that she'll be meeting her goal!  We also submitted a pic to the school of her reading Harry Potter to G...not sure that G really appreciated the story!

We also had a lovely Valentine's Day this week...both kids passed out valentines in their classes, and of course they came home with a mountain of candy. I just found candy from G's party last year! I guess it's a good thing that they don't burn through candy that fast...but we really, really don't need extra candy for any holiday, ever again!

Getting ready to head to school on Heart Day!

Scott made the kids an early dinner on Valentine's Day and then we sent them off to bed a little early so we could enjoy a dinner for just the two of us. After the crazy times I've been having at work recently, it was great to unplug and spend some time together.

And speaking of unplugging...the basement is going to be wired this week! An electrician is stopping over on Wednesday to do all the work..and then we can move on to the next phase. It's going to be great to eventually have another  living area in the house. Once we start talking about flooring, paint, furniture, etc, I'll be much more involved in the process. Ava decided we should paint it blue with green polka dots. Ummm....probably not!

I was telling a co-worker about our fish, Bloop, and trying to explain how Bloop lays down on his leaf hammock.  He loves it!

G has started to enjoy posing for the camera...he focused mainly on happy faces, as when he did his sad face, it was him looking at the ground instead of at the camera!

Ava was a very busy girl yesterday...she was working on her homework yesterday morning, and a group of friends stopped over to play.  And then right before lunch, another group of friends came over to see if she could join them (seriously, worst timing ever!)  And then yesterday afternoon, she got a call from a boy in her class!  He was calling to see if she could go with him to Nickelodeon Universe tomorrow (they don't have school) but we've already got her signed up to be at the release day program, so she couldn't go with him.  (Side note: don't tease her and say it was a call for a date!) 

And, she got invited to go to a really cool birthday party in a few weeks - the kids are going to be so surprised and love what they will be doing!  I think I can finally put aside my fears that she doesn't have friends.  Her Kindergarten year was such a rough one in SSP...I'm glad we were able to move into a school district where she finally found people that she can connect with.
Time to get moving - lots to do today, including a late lunch with a cousin who is living in Minnesota for a few months.  Should be interesting, since we've never met him before!

Sunday, February 12, 2017

Necessary Fun Times

I think the end of winter may be in sight.  I know we'll have a some more snow storms, and there will definitely be more chilly days, but, it seems that perhaps, we have passed the point of a deep freeze.  I just checked the weather, and it looks like we will be up into the 50s next weekend.  The 50s!!  In February!  In Minnesota!  Say what you will, but I'm pretty sure climate change is a real thing.

In any case, we have gotten over the post-holiday slump, and have been taking advantage of the nicer days (and appreciating the longer hours of sunshine) to get outside and focus on fun.  Last weekend, Ava worked on her decorating her Valentine's box and also writing out her class Valentine's (it's just easier to do them right away, rather than waiting until the last minute and feeling rushed and stressed out.) Since it was such a nice day, some of her little neighborhood friends came over to see if she could play outside with them.  When she was done writing her love notes to her friends, she headed out with them, and I decided that I, too, needed to get out for a bit.  I took a long walk around the neighborhood, and enjoyed the bright sun and the crisp air on my face.  In the meantime, Ava and friends were busy...they decided to make a huge fort in our backyard with cardboard boxes and wood from our woodpile.  Totally fine with us, especially since we mandated that the fort-makers were also the cleaner-uppers! 

It's fun seeing politics at work, even in children, since they decided that the next time they play together, one girl will be the assistant to the assistant to the assistant.  And she received that title because she didn't want to help clean up so she left.  I say, good for the kids for enforcing consequences to those who don't play by the rules!

Picking just the right cards for her friends...

These red berries were beautiful in the bright sunshine

Ava and Scott surprised me by bringing home an early Valentine's flower seeing fresh flowers in the house!

On Friday night, we had a fantastic movie night and watched the movie Trolls.  We all loved it (well, Scott slept through a big part of it,) but the kids and I thought it was fantastic!  Great music and a wonderful story...we will definitely be adding this one to our permanent movie collection.

I had signed Ava up for an emoji cookie baking/decorating class through Community Ed.  So, yesterday morning, I brought her to one of the middle schools in the area and let her do her thing for 1.5 hours.  She appears to have had a lot of fun, plus we are now the proud owners of several new cookie cutters and a really easy sugar cookie recipe.  And...once again, it's proven to be a small world.  As I was walking out of the class after dropping her off, I was chatting with another mom who had a son in the emoji cookie class with Ava.  Turns out that Ava and I had been paired with that mom and her son at the candy making class we took a few years ago!  We agreed that the emoji cookie class was a much better option than trying to teach our then 5 and 6 year old children how to boil sugar, and deal with the hot temps of candy making! I'm sensing a baking play date in the future...!

She didn't have time to decorate, but that's ok...we can do it at home!

I ran the kids up to Grandma Deb and Grandpa Whitey's yesterday afternoon so they could spend some time with them, and so Scott and I could have a date night.  We had a great night out...we enjoyed a wonderful dinner at Porter Creek, and then because we were stuffed full of food, we walked around Burnsville Center for a bit.  Scott showed high levels of patience when we were in Macy's and I was waiting to purchase some mascara...the exaggerated delay in what should have been a 3-min purchase almost put me over the edge, as well, but we both held it together.  And, we managed to pick up some new shoes for G!

We ended the night at a local bar, and played a really fun game called VINGO (Video Bingo.)  The whole bar totally got into it and was signing along with the songs.  Scott noted that the clientele that night was older than us, and he was surprised there were still so many people out...I figured that's what happens when the kids are older or out of the house.  It was a great night out with Scott, and a very happy early Valentine's Day celebration.

We were toying with the idea of going to the dino exhibit in Minneapolis today, but then we checked the prices.  While it's a really cool event, we need to balance if we're going to get our money's worth for a few hours of fun.  With Ava, it's not an issue, but G has a limited attention span.  I will never forget paying a ton of money to go to the aquarium at the MOA.  We walked through it and were done in 10 minutes, and our 4-year-old Ava had no interest in going back in to walk through slowly or see more fish. So...instead we're going to a morning movie as a family!  We've got tickets to the see the Lego Batman movie in a few hours. I know both G and Ava will enjoy that since they giggle any time the previews come on TV.

Time to get ready to enjoy the day...Happy Sunday!

Sunday, February 5, 2017

Are You a Good Guy or a Bad Guy?

When G plays with his Superman toy, or watches a TV show with superheroes in it, I usually remember to ask, "Are you a good guy or a bad guy?"  And, without fail, he always says that he's a good guy. Good answer, G!
When Ava was little and big into the Princesses and Fairies, there was a brief time where she seemed to like the villains a little bit more.  I won't lie, that concerned me for a bit.  But now it's clear to see that she is a good person, with a sweet heart, and would never, ever do something to hurt someone intentionally.  Yesterday, she was playing in Minecraft, and was telling me about the Creepers (aka suicide bombers...that was a fun one to explain) and just other creatures in general.  She showed me this amazing house that she built, and I asked her if she would invite anyone inside of her house.  Her only rule was that they had to be nice and not say mean things.  Atta girl!

It makes my heart happy to know that our children have a good base for knowing what's right vs. what's wrong, and that their moral compasses appears to be working.  This gives me hope for them, and the future. 

My Facebook news feed is filled with mostly happy things...friends enjoying their vacations, family members surrounded by those they love, and funny, silly things that happen during the day.  I am lucky to know people who live their lives with kindness and tolerance as their guiding principles.  And, believe it or not, I also consider myself to be lucky to know people who I completely disagree with on the current state of this country. I have thought about unfriending them SO many times, but if I do, then I'm not being tolerant of their beliefs - as much as I disagree with them.  These are people who I actually know in real life...people who are a part of an extended family...and it blows my mind. On one hand, I know them to be really good people, yet...there seems to be a missing puzzle piece, one that I cannot figure out.  So, for that reason, I will keep them in my circle of friends, and trust that they will make their life choices based on the cornerstones of good vs. bad ideals.

Moving on to lighter topics...G said something really cute yesterday.  When I went into his room yesterday morning to wake him up, he said, "Mommy, I have a mustache!"  And I said, "What?  A mustache?" (but really wondering what the heck happened overnight...)  And he said, "Yes, right here!" and then pointed to his arm.  I told him he couldn't have a mustache on his arm, but then he showed me a bump, and proudly told me it was his mustache.  So....we had a little facial hair vocab lesson, and I thought he got it.  But, last night, he again told me he had a mustache on his arm. Kids these days, with their crazy lingo and slang words...! ;)

We also have been watching a lot of the BBC's Peppa Pig lately...I'm pretty sure Scott and Ava are sick of it, but G and I like to cuddle up and watch the proper pigs and their friends get into (and out of) funny situations.  The other night, I actually stopped cleaning up the kitchen so I could watch the episode with the new Wolf family who moved in next door to the Pig family.  There was a whole lotta "huffing and puffing" mentioned, along with Daddy Wolf asking Daddy Pig what HIS house was made of.  Humor that's completely lost on a three-year old, but I sure did enjoy the snarky response that Daddy Pig gave back, along with his smug smile. 

I'm loving the sunny days we've had recently...feels like spring is not too far off in the future; gives me hope! Hooray!