Saturday, August 31, 2013

Five on Friday (Back to School Edition!)

1) The Wilsons were here last weekend!  We were so glad to be able to have them in town for a once-again too short weekend.  We took the opportunity to "host" a LSF reunion of sorts at our pool with them.  Once again, Kellie's pictures were the best.  (More here) So many kiddos to photograph!  It's always wonderful to see them all play together and then to enjoy grown-up conversation with our dear friends as overnight houseguests.
2) First week of school--DONE!  Things went really well for everyone.  Mali is a little sad about the transition from last year to this one, but is handling it overall okay. We are all adjusting to the earlier morning routine and the necessary early nights.  Brinn was absolutely thrilled to stay all day and eat lunch at school.

3) Speaking of Brinn, first grade should come easily for her this year--she's a reader now.  She had been right on track with her Kindergarten phonics curriculum, sounding out letter and such.  All of a sudden, this summer, I was reading aloud to the girls and Brinn realized she knew basically all the words.  I always want to remember her then reaching for "The Boxcar Children" and reading a few pages aloud to us.  A switch had been flipped.  It's really fun to watch.

4)  Carrigan was my biggest surprise this week.  No tears at all, just a straightfoward good-bye to me on the first day and enjoyed herself in her big-girl preschool class.  Perhaps she is simply all cried out from the EPIC tantrum she threw at bedtime last night.

5) And finally, a quip from Mali.  I was helping her think through new friends for the school year (her best friend from last year is homeschooingl this year).  I suggested she could get to know S. better.  She responded that S. was really good friends with L. I then suggested that she could be friends with both S. and L.  Her answer:  "L.?  Who would want to be friends with a late person?"  (That's my girl!  Although I have to admit that certain late people can be pretty charming.  Especially the former late one that I'm married to).

Friday, August 23, 2013

The Fair

We had another magical day at the best fair to be found in Michigan.  Both of the girls' grandmas were gracious enough to accompany me and my little ladies as Jonathan was busy working "at home" (aka his in-laws' house) during the days that week.  We started first in the "Wonders of Birth" Barn and saw a calf that was literally 30 minutes old!  At Mali's request, we spent some good time in the poultry barn too.  That girl loves her turkeys!  After a few more animal sightings we headed to the rides.  Woo-hoo!  Spinning, and motorcycles and giant slides.  We topped it all of with ridiculously rich fair food and even met a pageant-winning princess. Another one for the memory books.

Saturday, August 17, 2013

Another Birthday Girl

Birthday Shopping

Carrigan had a bright idea about what she wanted for her birthday this--a shopping trip with her grandma, great-grandma, and great-great-aunt ALL BY HERSELF.  (No sisters invited!)  And goodness, did she count down the days to that event. The day after our camping trip, she got her wish the the four lovely ladies did some mighty purchasing through the toy and book aisles of Meijer.  She ended up with a My Little Pony castle, a singing Ariel doll, a Pinkalicious treasury, and a painting book.  Most importantly, time with some special people.  I'm pretty sure a good time was had by all.

A "Pure Michigan" Evening

Our regular camping spot had many fine aspects including a great beach, but you just can't top Lake Michigan.  So after camping, we headed up to Berrien, started our camping laundry, and headed to Silver Beach.  It wasn't quite warm enough for swimming (not that it stops the kids from getting soaked) but the sun was still beautiful.
 There are some friends that you may go for months without seeing but when you do, it's like no time had passed.  Pick right up where you left off.  We are very blessed to have friends like that throughout our lives.  The Posts are no exception.  Their three boys plus our four girls makes a pretty special combination.  The grown-ups caught up on all of the events of the past few months and reminisced about our GR days together.  (Squash soup!  Veggie Lasagna!)  Our kids were as industrious as ever and got right to work on making sand cookies and pies and digging an even bigger hole they had found.  Our oldest are still the schemes (thanks to Zeke we had M &M cookies), the middles are the peacemakers, and the four-year-olds are handfuls. They are all growing up much too quickly (Braces!  Hairstyles!) so we treasure these times more than ever now.  And are thankful for such a Pure Michigan setting to enjoy them in.

Friday, August 09, 2013

A few more pics from July...

 New favorite game:  Tell-Tale.  Love those Blue Orange games!  A big thanks to Jill from "Just Jilly" (a GR friend) for the recommendation. 
 SO excited to have her own play-doh machine.
 Before church pictures with the birthday girl

 I love so many things about this picture--the fact that Laney is wearing Keen sandals with a fancy dress, the fact that Eeyore is in it (he's everywhere these days!) and Brinnly's expression.
 Cousin Lauren is super-cool
 So is the game the Ryans gave Carrigan

 On to our Lake House trip...look at Brinn's catch!  It was quite a sunfish!
The weather wasn't ideal for boating so we just did a few quick trips and spent time indoors too.  And it wouldn't be a Shunkwiler vacation without baking with Grandma Sandy!