We finished the book, The Long Winter - by Laura Ingalls Wilder just a couple weeks ago. For some reason, when I turned the last page in the book, I was ready for spring. I stupidly thought that it would come now that we finished "The long winter" I mean, how appropriate would that have been?
It really has been the longest winter that I have ever experienced.
The snow has been falling for over 24 hours. We played Christmas music until it felt wrong and even baked some brownies. The boys have been in and out of the snow, Marshall has been shoveling and blowing the driveway and I have enjoyed watching people get stuck in the snow outside of our big window. (One of my favorite things is watching people get stuck, but then unstuck-- the small triumphs in the midst of an unfortunate event) I do try to send Marshall out to help them, I can't completely sit by and do nothing. I've already told the boys that they will eventually be able to gear up and go outside to help everyone that gets stuck on our street.
I actually dread dressing the boys to go out in the snow, but have been grateful that Marshall doesn't seem to mind- he has a precise order in which he dresses the boys for the weather and I stay out of it. Although, I can't help but stand by the windows and watch the boys trudge through the waist deep snow (on our deck) and the look of hesitant joy on their faces as they test their limits with each heavy step.
We celebrated a few happy things in the beginning of the month. Easter! We hosted again this year. Watched General Conference as a family and shared a meal with extended family. It was nice to finally break out the leaves to our new table and use them! 16 people were able to fit comfortably. We are so happy to have everyone at the same table.
Here is Isaac at his first Easter.
I try to capture the boy all together when I can, and if they are bathed and in clean clothes- that's like a special bonus. I am so glad they are looking at the camera!
Isaac has officially been in this world, as long as he was in! (I was induced at 39 weeks) I cannot believe how much faster time goes by when he is out vs. in. I still feel like I am recovering from having him!
Eli lost his first tooth this week! I noticed he had a wiggly tooth before he did a week or so ago. He never once mentioned it bothering him or never even tried forcing it out (like Ezra) But, while talking to Ezra, Ezra yelled and forced Eli to open his mouth all the way and noticed that Eli didn't have a tooth in his mouth! hahah! I ran over and to everyone's surprise, his tooth was gone! He ran to the mirror to examine his new smile and jumped exclaiming that the tooth fairy was going to come! We are pretty positive that he had swallowed the tooth- especially since we have no idea when he lost it.
There wasn't any blood or anything. He didn't even know!
Oliver and Isaac had their wellness checks.
Isaac is 25 lbs! 98th percentile!
Oliver is 32 lbs! 58th percentile (Isaac is catching up)
Both doing well, besides a lingering cough/cold that I am thinking will leave the house when the snow melts.
When Isaac turned 9 months :)
One of my best friends had a baby girl named June. I literally want to rub my face all over her. She is so perfect. We are so excited to have a little girl to play with and to spoil. (Eventually)
Ezra couldn't get enough of her either. She is perfect!
Marshall and boys ran- literally. RAN to dairy queen one night after dinner for Free Cone day. Marshall couldn't believe that the boys ran the whole way there and back (even up the big hill) without stopping. These boys have SO much energy. (And the weather is really killing us)
(obligatory baby in the bath photo- because there is nothing cuter.)
We also celebrated Oliver turning 3!!! I cannot believe this boy is so grown up!
He requested blue cake (to match his eyes :) just kidding- but aren't his eyes insane?
Marshall's birthday too!
Marshall turned 38! You'd never guess;) Every year, every person in this house has gotten a little birthday tribute from me- but this year, I dropped the ball. I wasn't in the mood.
But here it is, Marshall.
You don't like when my lips are red.,Oliver's Birthday cake was blue,
If there is anyone who deserves another wonderful year- I really hope it's you.
No, really. You are the best- We are so grateful for all that you do for our family.
You are always so excited and in love when the boys run to you to tell you all about what is exciting to them in that moment. You listen intently to their every word they can muster and spit out- and not only do you listen and look at them- you mirror their excitement and ask them the best questions about what they have shared. It is obvious how much you are loved around here.
Thank you for being you.
We have a book (and a half) left of the Series of Unfortunate events left to read (there are 13 books) so finding the boys in disguise and trying to solve mysterious cases isn't completely out of the norm.
Ezra is even requesting a "Series" themed Birthday party, which I am
overwhelmed super excited about planning. I am not a "birthday party mom" We actually will only throw "parties" (with friends and real fun) for Golden birthdays, and when they turn 8. I love and hate stuff like this but am actually super excited if he can stick with this idea for the next 6 months, I am already making lists of ways to pull this off and so far it's awesome.
Ezra has decorated his wall with all sorts of things that inspire him and engage his interests. I love that he has made this "his" space. We don't have a lot of area in our house for this- but he found a way. And, his drawings and creations are pretty detailed and intricate. I am always impressed with what he comes up with.
He is also infactuated with all things ICE. He loves experimenting with the freezer. You never know what you will find next when you open the freezer.
A last minute trip to the library usually looks like this. Just kidding. It doesn't. Oliver is usually running full speed toward the toys while Eli wanders aimlessly looking at all the things and Ezra is lost in a certain isle contemplating which book/dvd/audio he needs to add to the library bag.
Our home school journey is exactly that. A journey.
I have probably called or texted Marshall more times in the last 2 weeks asking him what we were thinking when we decided to keep the boys home- than ever.
While other days are smooth sailing- wonderful and I wouldn't change it for anything.
My boys are happy and excited to learn new things and enjoy being in charge of what they are ready to learn next. I am loving how well Ezra is taking to leadership and independence in his education. I am remembering where he was when we began this year, and where he is today and I am blown away. WE are doing this! We are making serious progress and strides to a successful academic future.
Mostly, by being together, reading tons and tons and discussing and exploring their interests at their pace.
We started a new thing a few weeks ago. Marshall and I were noticing that the boys were getting super squirrely and forgetting to do the mundane daily things that need to be done. Ie; clearing their plates after dinner, brushing their teeth, practicing piano, running the stairs 10x (for 5 bucks- this is a biggy and the best because they NEED to run off some steam and this way it is a win win!.. etc. We have a "mom bucks" system now. Every little thing that is listed as a daily "do" is worth a certain amount of "mom bucks" if you earn a certain amount- ie; 20 bucks- you can choose to spend them or save them. I have a list of ways to spend them - whether it's popcorn snack (10 bucks) or 30 minutes of a show(30 bucks) They also "lose mom bucks and have to cash them in if they break any family rules, which is a real bummer. I originally started this to get Eli a little more into a routine- so he can find some order and independence. He could care less. haha!! But it works great for Ezra and even Oliver. Eli comes around once in a while but it has been a good way to make the boring things a little more exciting around here.
We are taking our road trip soon and the next few weeks will definitely be prepping ourselves for that. Emotionally, physically, mentally. I have already reserved a ton of books on audio for our trip. I think I might be more excited about this than they are.