Tuesday, December 14, 2010

match night!

our army match list for residency:
1. Fort Benning, Columbus GA
2. Hawaii
3. Fort lewis, Washington St
4. Fort Gordon, Augusta GA
5. Washington DC
6. Fort Hood, Texas
7. Fort Bragg, NC

We get to take the kids out to breakfast tomorrow morning. School is delayed 2 hours for the bitter cold and negative temperatures. We have to break the news to them that this is the last winter for the next 3 years that they will get to enjoy these seasonably warm i mean frigid freezing temperatures. We are packing up our family of proper southwestern virginians and heading into the unknown land of the DEEP south. We are headed to Columbus GA! We are super excited, and will be just 1.5 hrs away from atlanta! we all loved it when we visited this fall and love that our good friends the Marshalls live just 45 minutes away from where we will be settling! Congrats on the match john!!

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

We baptized out third this past weekend.. It was an amazing experience. I have the privelage of being his primary teacher and he is just an amazing guy. He is still so unbelievably shy and had a hard time at the baptism because of all the attention focused on him. He had his grandpa and Uncle Fredy speak and the spirit was so strong. I guess you could say we had waterworks going on, and in more ways then one...
the realization the the baptism font DOES NOT take 2 hours to fill as per bishops instructions...

I have been trying so hard to potty train Sassy. She loves the idea: get treats when she sits, wearing panties, which have been so much fun to find as I fold laundry! Such a far cry from the boys superhero undies they had at her age! however, there is something missing. She chooses 3-7 pairs to wear at a time and holds her pee until I have to diaper her for us to run errands or for her no nap. She has also peed through the whole stack of them. Not quite there, and i wouldn't stress except she is the one who wants to wear them and I dont think I should discourage it.

A few weeks ago a friend offered us 4 tickets to the hokie game (the week after we spent a small fortune that could have purchsed an island somewhere to take the kids, and on our 11th anniversary!!!) i had already agreed to babysit an extra kid while his parents went to the game so Van and his friend Alden went together with John and Aldens dad. those boys are so sweet together!
Sassy turned 2 on the 17th of Oct! What a wonderful day for us as we enjoy never having a 1 year old EVER AGAIN! It is so fun to go through each stage with her KNOWING it will never be this way again. I am so satisfied watching the older boys get old and seeing sweet girl getting there also. i am over baby stuff and ready to move on. We got her a tinkerbell bike (and she found T's helmet) and she has been having a great time sitting on it. She is not able to pedal but I am sure that will come soon!

The fri before her bday we took lunch over after she had her Parents Morning Out class and we celebrated with some of her friends from class. She had a great time adn really enjoyed practicing opening presents.
Her friends are sooo cute! She has 4 really sweet friends who are all within 6 months of each other and they have been together since she was born (shes the youngest) we will miss them so much when we move.
Seconds on cupcakes! Happy camper!
I've bee getting tons of people asking me how homeschooling is going. To be perfectly honest, we are getting good at it. Some days I feel really lazy or have tons to do and send him upstairs to read for a few hours, but this is the first time he has ever taken a chapter book and read it cover to cover. He used to pick it up, skim middles, get bored and be done. In the past 3 weeks, he has read the first 3 Percy Jackson books. That in itself is a total change. His math is also improving and we have been doing a lot of logic work as he really struggles with things like that. He is becoming a more logical thinker and is applying that into other areas of his life. WE are really enjoying history. We have spoent the last month on ancient egypt and i have learned so much! WE are currently mummifying a chicken and will wrap it in 4 weeks when the salt, baking powder and baking soda finish drying it out. We have also made a scroll and will make a clay tablet this week and then will subject them to the oven, the rain and his brothers to discuss why the tablets were better at preserving info vs. the scrolls. He is learning so much. On the other hand, I am so bored. all the time. it is tough having a 9 yr. old as your everyday all day companion. it makes me glad he isnt an only child and he's bored too. he doesn't know how to handle not having his brothers around. I think he is glad to be home and i am glad for his growth, but I am looking very forward to next year when all 4 boys are back at school and Sassy will be in preschool at least 2 mornings a week (she only goes 1 day right now) I need that selfish time. i am a better mom when i get it. (and a better wife)
the nile river- we planted grass and flooded the nile weekly to represent olden condtitions. the grass is flourishing, much like crops on the fertile nile valley! the projects have been so valuable for tying everything together for him.
I feel unsettled. I get this way every election day for a few different reasons but this year seems worse. I am unhappy with govt. and the games they play. I hate waiting to see the results and seeing if it flipped sides or stayed the same. i hate the candidates and their opinions. i feel they are all wrong (wish colbert would run! ha!) I also feel unsettled in my personal life. We are atthis awkward crossroads where 1 number makes a world of a difference. i obsessively check websites to find the magic number and the date when it will be announced. We are waiting for THE BOARD SCORE (insert scary music here) this has been a sticky spot for our family recently and until the number is released, our paycheck is not. it is a really frustratinf holding pattern and I feel so much anxeity over it. I hate the unsettled middle, i hate not knowing and i hate waiting (i saw a really funny sign from the rally to restore sanity/march to keep fear alive held the other day : WHAT DO WE WANT? pateince! WHEN DO WE WANT IT? NOW! totally the way i feel today!) So, since you have a few pieces of my scattered mind, maybe I should leave you with a few more:
today: I am going to listen to Christmas music and clean the house (dealing with little sleep as baby broke crib, was moved into toddler bed and WONT SLEEP ANYMORE)
----i got toy story 3 for 3.99! I love good deals and by buying a tide detergent I would have purchasded anyway (also on sale and used a coupon) and a thing of bounty paper towels (ditto on bought anyways, on sale and using coupon) CVS sold the dvd for 3.99 with the 25 P&g purchase! I had 3 neighborhood kids over this am to watch it.
---right now I am listening to this and the sounds of my daughter dumping an entire box of wheat thins on the kitchen floor that really needs to be swept, mopped and overall disenfected.
---I am looking very forward to nap time today where I am going to curl up with this which is long and hard to read but makes me feel smart (unlike atlas shrugged, where I cant get more then 50 pages in without being bored to tears. Should i keep going??)
---T and M didnt eat their halloween candy. their gym coach challenged them to eat 5 pieces and get rid of the rest. i took it a step further and offered them a new hex bug if they ate none of it. It was amazing. Jo ate his pieces.
---t and I are running a 5k this weekend. in the forecasted snow. his first ever. i am excited and hoping he can finish it. he has the goal of doing a mini triathalon for his 11th bday which involves a 5k, 300m swim and a 10 mile bike ride. he is my hero.

Sunday, October 17, 2010

lo que paso

We have reached this really frustrating point in med school land: the point where EVERYTHING is out of my control... During med school, I have had the option of nagging John to study, nagging John to turn in paperwork, nagging John to do extra work. friday he submitted his residency application. I can no longer do anything. Everything is out of my hands. Dec. 15th we will find out where we head but until then, I wait (and not very pateintly) We ranked hawaii, columbus GA, and tacoma washington in our top 3 (but not in that order) We plan on staying up until after midnight the 14th to find out where we go and then take the kids to breakfast and telling them where we move mid june. Until then, we window shop houses at our different places and wonder where the cards will fall.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Bucket List items (9 and 7) and other such things

Hey Ya'll, i got me a new post here....
Man, I am the WORST at this! I love fall because we stay so busy doing really cool things but then 5 years later when I finally get around to pulling out the scrapbooks I forgot when, where and why we did all these awesome things, so in the spirit of being helpful later (much later) down the road, let's catch up... shall we? Grab a cup of cocoa... this is a loooong one... First and foremost, I feel like i should mention that like everyone else, my kids also returned to school, quite a bit later then in previos years due to a problem with the high schoolers and where excactly they would go to school (they ended up in the middle school building after a mid winter roof collapse last year) sending the middle schoolers to a close town for school... so, a week late and not a DAY to early, my kids started back to school a week later then originally planned...much to my chagrin. but alas, it has been worth it! Van the man started k this year, making my daily life MUCH quieter. he is having a blast but I am really not sure how much he is getting out of it this year. Luckily I plan on having him repeat next year already 9since his bday is so late he will miss the first grade cutoff in several of the states we are looking at for next year. first day pictures taken in front of our new residence while waiting for bus.

Not really sure what to tell you abt this one except i pull out the camera and my kids all look awkwardly at me.

yay! 35 minutes late the bus FINALLY makes it to our house so I can start the school day for Jo who is homeschooling this year, per his request.

He works so diligently on his math (it's on;ly a show) while our baby prodigy practices her instrument all day. She loves it, I promise. And I only make her practice 5 hours a day. She naps the other 3 hours.

After 4 days of school, I had enough and decided a vacation was not only well deserved, but practically required. John was in GA for the month so I pulled the kids out of school Fri. morning, missing 4 days, and we drove to 'bama to visit some good friends that live near where John was rotating. The vacation was off to a bang as first thing Sat am Jo took a golf club to the back of the head. I should have taken him to the ER, but being the practical family we are (and the fact that I was waaay to organzied when my mom took my kids on vacationw hile I was in tx) I didnt have his insurance card bc it was still packed from that trip soooo john found some fake glue skin stuff left over from when one of the marshalls had an injury and we ghetto glued his head back together best we could. (6 weeks later- ugly scar and huge knot still, prob should have gone in)

After the injurt, we headed to the local sonic, bamas finest for a healthy and tasty lunch. It was hot and bright!The kids had soo much fun playing together that labor day weekend! We grilled out, made cafe rio salads, and spent a lot of time bumming around (we never made it to go see Auborn Univ, the only thing we had decided to go see!) We had fun watching the hokies vs. boise state game until they lost, but our kids had fun dressing the part of the cheering section.

Here the girls watch my little ponies (or something girly) instead of football... I'm pretty sure hokies lost bc good luck charms were not actively engaged in game. (or maybe it had moer to do with the fact Audrey removed her hokie clothing??)

The older kids did a lot of that... They could be found laying around gthe bed rooms, lined up in the hallway with power cords using every available outlet, or streched throughout the living room all screaming at the screens and to each other. They had totally missed each other (It had been 5 months since we had seen them)

One of the main reasons we came to visit john is we are hoping when the match results come down that the army will love us and let us head back this way to fort benning, we have listed in #1 (hawaii-2, tacoma washington-3) and we will find out dec. 15th where we will end up. We headed into columbus on sun. to check out the ward and town, as well as the base. WE LOVED it! The kids Loved the fact that there is a krispy creme (we picked up fresh donuts on our way back to the marshalss) and a firehouse sub. that did it for them. The funnel cake fries at the burger king on base was their fav. thing abt the actual base. We liked the ward well enough, and went over to a current residents hopuse for dlunch afterwards. Everyone seemed really nice adn we are excited to find out where we will end up now more then before!
there is an awesome infantry museum right off base we took the kids to. AMazing, and very moving.
I finally dragged myself back into town in time for the boys to go back to school thurs. I left Alabama Tues am and went back to base to say goodbye to John and take a tour fo the hosptial. After drivign all day with the kids, I was exhausted and called my awesome brother in law and got to see their cute family and stay overnight there. I was planning on leaving super early wed. but didnt make it on the road til almost lunchtime. it was nice to have that freedom since I am homeschooling the kid that can't handle missing that much school. Fri. Our sassy baby started parents morning out. she goes fri mornings and its where I worked up until this year. it is sooo nice not working, and she LOVES going! there are only 7 other kids and 5 of them are girs that she played with all last year and summer too!
Random pic of the at home crew...

And then at the end of Sept. van turned 5! He picked a black cake, which I was pretty sure was for over the hills but whatev... I would have baked a cake myself except i was out of eggs and out of a husband to watch other kids while i went to the store for 1 thing. (it was goood too!)
Toy story lego set from mom and dad
and a kung zhu warrier from his friend jack
He choose to go to the local greek resteraunt for dinner so we picked up his best friend Alden and headed that way
they are so cute together!
A few days later, Daddy rode the train for philly into lburg! (he flew from Ga to PA to take a test first though. the kids hadnt seen him in almost a month so they were excited to be up way past bedtime to collect him, esp. because they had a busy afternoon doing...

whatever sassy is watching....
their first road race! As part of my dads bday surprise (more abt that in a min.) my mom signed all 4 boys up to run the amazing kids run. They all did really well, tay ran it in 7:57, took 32 overall abd 10th in age group, jo-12:43, 312 overall and 106 in age group, Mas-9:48, 146 overall and 49th overall but the real surpriose for me was van- he finished 10th overall (in the 5 and under group) out of , with a time of 10:24. I was shocked he could run it that fast! (above-post race with medals)
the boys were really excited for the timing chips on their shoes! they felt professional!
Pre race (and if I'm being really honest, pre stinkiness, they're that age..) The next morning, my dad was embarking on the race he had been training for months for. He was so excited and nrevous about this race. (bucket list item 9) My brother Kelly made an excuse to come into town and we used picking John up from train station as our excuse and he thought we were coming to watch him. He kept asking me and kelly if he could register us for the race (to which we made up lame excuses but no outright lies about why that was a bad idea- ie- my knees are sore (which they were) or no, you dont need to (bc my mom already had...) That morning, he left early for the race. As soon as he was out of the door, all of us sprang to action. John, me, my brother Kelly all got up, dressed and ate in record time. a sitter came to my moms house to watch the kids and we headed to the race. My sister Lyns and my sis in law were there to walk the 4 mile race w. my mom and we surprised my dad on the starting line! It was amazing, (and he cried) and I beat my course time by 19 minutes! must have been the good vibes bc i def. didnt train well enough for the race.
The starting gun shot (the course is a there and back course and i got passed the other way by these guys at my mile 3 (they were on 7)

John at the finish
my finish- i passed 2 guys right at the end and finished in 1:42, which I was super happy with

before ther race- the big reveal. I have no idea how my mom managed to keep all of us coming into town to run this a surprise from him! My sis in law drove 2 hours each way to grab my sis from college the night before, my cousin for pa drove down and we had a wonderful party afterwards!
all of us before the race- my brother kelly finished in 75 minutes, and my dad came in under his goal time of 1:40 by several minutes! Good race day for all of us! (and it only took a week to start walking normally again)
in the beg. of oct, M turned 8! He got a bakugan from his brothers and an ipod shuffle from mom and dad
turning 8 means starting cub scouts! Here are the boys in their uniforms! looking good guys!
fri we celebrated M, Van and Sassy bday with a combined pool party! We had a great time! The Marshalls came into town to help us celebrate a big weekend and it was grat seeing them again as well!

Sassy had a great time swimming! (she gets really jealous watching jo swim 3 afternoons a week)
Audrey and Cara
the almost brithday girl! (mid oct she will turn 2!)

After the bday party, we brought the kids home and put them to bed WAY to late. the next morning we took all the kids (minus 3 babies) to the hokie football game, where it was HOT but we were so glad we took the kids. We had a great time watching the hokies win solid over CMU and the kids had fun going to the game. For most of the kids it was their first football game. Van was HOT (it got up to 80) and they enjoyed nachos, sno cups, and tons of soda. After the game we came back and had a cafe rio party with some friends to celebrate the Marshalls being here and football season. It made us really miss some friends who have moved away that would have normally come over. I took some great pics of the game and accidentaly deleted them from this post so the pics will get their own post. Tay loved the whole game and was way into jiggling keys on third downs. Everytime the bird gobbled over the PA he pulled the keys out and shook them!
Sunday morning the Marshalls planned on getting out of town early but it was foiled by plans to go to Mabry mill instead. the weather was beautiful and the colors on the parkway were amazing! the kids loved playing in the water ways that mabry built to collect water for his mill floating leaves and getting wet. The kids always play so nicely together and it seems like we never have to break up fights. Between grass sledding and scooter riding they stayed so busy enjoyiong the fall weather. We had a wonderful weekend visiting with good friends and celebrating and we are off to such a busy fall!