Saturday, August 24, 2013

Random iPhone Photos

Here's a bit of a catch-all post of some random photos I want to share!

This boy has committed to reading the entire Book of Mormon before he turns eight. We made a schedule for him so that he can read a little every night and he'll finish just about a week before his eighth birthday. He's doing so well!! He reads every night and is staying on top of it.


On Wednesday nights we go to the Encinitas Station farmers market and stop at one stand only. The Sunny Cal fruit stand. Their fruit is AMAZING. Seriously, SO SO amazing!! The best plums, pluots, peaches, grapes, figs and apples I've ever had in my life. They are an Orange County local grower that is family owned and operated. Their fruit is so sweet and organic and just DELICIOUS. The kids have their favorites -- Lia loves the dapple dandies and Max loves the golden moons. I just love it all!!

A monarch chrysalis we found.

First game of the year! Pretty sure we lost!

Taking advantage of the hot weather and our backyard. It's been really really hard not having Tyler home on the weekends. I try to entertain the kids but really I'm just tired and burned out.


We've instituted a new chore chart, Family Home Evening schedule and allowance that they earn from doing chores. It's going really well! We've also started a new schedule for the day. I set alarms on my phone to go off when it's time to make their beds, brush their teeth, start their homework, read, etc. When they hear the alarms they know exactly what to do and I don't have to yell or nag! It's been really awesome.


SUPER creepy moth in the side yard. Max spotted it.



Lia being an adorable little stinker telling us why she's not a fan of ice cream.



Tyler had some random Wednesday off one week so we went out to breakfast and headed to the beach just the two of us. It was a much welcomed break! The last two Fridays he's had off and he's come to help me teach art in the class and we've gone to our favorite little sushi place in Carlsbad and then just spent some time together. It's nice, but I'd gladly give it up to have him home on the weekends again!!

Sorry for the close-up of me but I liked that Mattie was with me.

I love how we got twin yolks AND bonus, that it looked like a crazy eyed cartoon chicken.

Lia's favorite thing is still going on runs with Tyler. She begs him to take her!! And her favorite thing to do while going on a run is to take a nap.

Cute picture Max drew of Oski!

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

School!! School!!

It came!! It finally came!! Look, if I'm going to live without pretending, I could not WAIT for the first day of school and six hours of freedom from the kids five days a week!!




Lia got to start kindergarten this year!! This is something we weren't sure would happen until just days before the first day of school. We had been petitioning the district and the filling out paper work to try to convince them that Lia was just SO ready for kindergarten and the arbitrary age cut off for this year (she missed it by just a few weeks) was just that -- arbitrary. Many many people tried to talk us out of sending her this year with (somewhat) valid arguments. But honestly, she's only the youngest in her class by a few weeks and she's lightyears ahead of many of her classmates in terms of what she knows and her emotional maturity. We had her signed up for Transitional Kindergarten, which, in this school district, was just a complete joke. It was at an elementary school that was the farthest away from where we lived. It was for 3 1/2 hours for four days a week. Paying for another year of Pre-K was just not an option and not something we thought was even worth it. So we fought hard to get her in.


A few days before school started they finally tested her readiness. It was a JOKE! And even Lia thought it was pretty lame!! Basically, the transitional kindergarten teacher asked her to name the letters of the alphabet, the numbers up to 10, shapes and colors. That.WAS.IT. At one point, half way through the questions, Lia said to the teacher "This is so boring!!" This is when we learned Lia's default when she is nervous is to be sassy. I'm not kidding. She even admitted it herself and felt bad about being sassy during the testing and apologized. Funny girl! So whether it was that they just felt she was ready or the teacher saw her sass and decided she did not want to deal with that for the year, they called the next day and said she was IN! They tested all of the TK kids and Lia was the only one they let go up to Kindergarten. And it has been a GREAT decision. Lia is absolutely blooming in kindergarten!!



Her teacher is Mr. Rose (who, by the way, was the sixth grade teacher of a few of my friends!) and he's great. I was so glad she got a male teacher! She loves men. She's made lots of friends and is just learning and soaking it all up. She loves homework!


Max, our smart and quirky boy, had a little bit of a rough start to first grade, though. I think the transition to having my mom here all summer spoiling him and undermining me a bit to having her gone and suddenly having to start school with rules and follow through was really hard for him. Especially because he got a split contract class -- meaning he has two teachers that alternate days. But, after instituting some stricter rules and schedules at home, he's doing AWESOME now. I was (and still am a little) worried that having two teachers and therefore constant change in the schedule would be really hard for him (Max's OCD tendencies are better kept in check and he is happier with the stricter schedule, when he can fully predict what his day will be) but he's doing really well with that, too. His reading is off the charts and just doing so well! His teachers, Mrs. Browne and Mrs. Dennis are sensitive to what makes him happy and makes him feel comfortable and are willing to put in the work to help him.



And, somehow I was roped in to being the art teacher in Max's class! Another mom and I take turns teaching art lessons for an hour on Fridays. It's kind of crazy! It makes me wonder if maybe I would have liked being a full time art teacher. I think maybe yes! I also volunteer 1-2 days a week in Lia's class (so my 6 hours a day 5 days a week have slowly dwindled down). Being in Kindergarten is pretty eye opening -- I'm not sure how Mr. Rose stays sane but he's a great teacher!!

I'm loving having the kids at school and the routines and everything. It reminds me about how much I loved school when I was a kid. This is going to be a great school year!


Saturday, August 17, 2013

Regularly Scheduled Program -- Summer Edition

After our trip up north we were back to our regular summer happenings which included a lot of walks on the beach. And then there was that time that my mom and I lost our minds and ran into the ocean with all our clothes on and made the kids do it too. It was awesome! I can't remember the last time I had done something so spontaneous. And the water felt great!









This photo may be blown up large and hung on the wall. I love it SO much. It so perfectly sums up their relationship.



Max and Mattie also participated in a swim competition and they all did great! I think they were surprised about how tired they actually got while they were swimming. 



Another day we headed out to Legoland and had fun! Lia was just a hair too short to go on some of the rides so we made her wear her boots with heals and she was just tall enough! It was the greatest day of her life!


Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Los Angeles

Towards the end of summer Bob came back for a week and we decided to take a quick trip up to LA to sightsee and visit with Suzanne and Michael. Despite it being seriously hot we had a good time! We hit up Forest Lawn Cemetery to put some flowers on the graves of some of Bob's family members including his grandparents (to my disappointment though, it was not the one where Michael Jackson was buried, that was the other Forest Lawn). 




No trip to LA is complete without visiting Bob's Big Boy.



We went to Griffith Park and rode the train and the carousel and some little ponies that took off running around their little track. It was so funny!










We then hit up the Observatory. It was really cool! They had a fabulous presentation about space and water and the Earth. It was a fun little overnight trip!