Sunday, January 22, 2012

Hello Snow

We finally got some snow late Friday night. The girls woke up and immediately put on their gear and headed outside. I had to beg them for this picture, they were too busy throwing snowballs, sledding down our neighbor's hill and enjoying the winter outside.

Gradon loved it too. Really. He did not want to come inside. He was fascinated by the cold white ground. He did not like it when his mittens fell off! He wandered all over the yard pointing and talking and giggling. It was great.

I do like winter. I like it for the snow days and pretty moments like this. I think my body and mind need the change of seasons, it helps me to really appreciate spring. I like the change of landscape. I love how the kids crave the snow and the magic of discovering a snowfall the night before. Once March rolls around I am ready for blossoms, bulbs and breezes. But, I'll take a few snow days until then. 

Bumble Bee and a Day with 1st Grade

Ellie was one of five students in her 1st grade class to qualify for this year's 'Bumble Bee' spelling competition. There were 20 students total, 5 from each class. I was so excited for her!  I was so happy I got to watch her, all the the children did a great job, what great practice for them when they compete in the real spelling bee! She did very well and made it to the top four spellers. The word she missed was 'important'. It was by far one of the hardest words of the morning, three syllables, there were only two words as hard the rest of the day. Ellie was disappointed she missed it, but it was a great experience. She got a special certificate, and one of her friends from her class was the winner. She did a great job, I was so proud of her!

This month we also went on a special field trip to the Baltimore Science Center, one of our favorite places! Ellie has been studying the planets and the solar system in her class, and it was a treat to go to the planetarium and learn about different stars, planets and aspects of the universe together. We got to watch a special interactive show that helped us see where the different stars and planets sit in the sky. It was really fun and interesting. I studied astronomy one semester in college, and it was fun to review with Ellie some things I learned long ago. I think one of my favorite solar systems is still Orion, the Hunter. I love Sirius, the brightest star in the night sky, which is part of the constellation Canis Major, one of Orion's two hunting dogs. Ellie liked the queen on her throne, Cassiopeia.  

We had a great visit! I love being able to go with her on these little trips. 

Thursday, January 12, 2012


I feel like I need to start over. It's barely the middle of January and I feel a bit defeated. Last Sunday night I came down with the most intense and virulent stomach flu I have ever had. 

It was terrible. Chris, E and G all had a few symptoms but I for some reason it hit me the hardest. We thought Sophia would not come down with it, but sure enough she did, yesterday, almost as bad as I had it. We are taking it slow today.

Tuesday night something really sad and hurtful happened to me. It has taken me almost two days to get over it, and I am still not OVER it but I am better. I keep trying to believe inside my head that whoever it was that did this thing to me may be a good person- but mostly I am just angry.

I honestly feel like I have been blind sided. Is this the tone for my new year? I hope not. I have more plans for this year including another race in 10 weeks. I haven't been able to train consistently this month. That freaks me out. My body is not going to like running 5 miles this Saturday. I just have to do the best I can with what I've got, right? Move ahead? Move forward. I feel like catching a plane and flying somewhere beautiful and warm. Like this place:

             *Capri, Italy with Chris, June 2009. If you ever get the chance to go to Italy, or to Capri, you need to go. It will change your life*

I have to say that my friends have been amazingly supportive while this has been going on. They have been calling and checking in, they have dropped off juice, gatorade, crackers, chocolate and even flowers.I know that I am very blessed to have such wonderful friends. I know I will get through this rough patch. I just can't take another illness.

I did realize last night that this past winter/sickness/craziness I haven't been taking enough photos and videos of the kids especially Gradon. Here is G being his cute self. He is such a funny boy. We love him.

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Happy New Year!

Only a couple days late! We are on day four of the new year and we still aren't fully functional. Christmas is put away, and the house is back to normal, but I guess I feel a little cheated with my Christmas break this year, being sick for most of it and only getting Ellie home for one week wasn't enough! Today she is home with strep, ugly stuff, but I think I am grateful for the slower pace this week and the fact that I have her home with me until tomorrow. Did you know that it was 14 degrees this morning? Brrr. So glad I didn't have to walk Ellie to the bus! =) If it is that cold we really should at least have some snow! Speaking of snow, we did have some flurries yesterday. I have a cute story about Sophia- on Monday she brought home a wishing lantern that she made at preschool. On the side was a wish written down, her wish? 'I wish for snow'- how cute is that! Tuesday we had snow flurries in the morning and it made my heart really happy. Now if we could get some to stick on the ground it would really be thrilling!

So, goals, we always talk about goals for the new year, right? Well our family has some good ones and I have a few too. My first is coming up in March, another half marathon. I really loved my last race, and want to do two this year, and keep my training up, and improve my time. We also want to get to the temple EVERY month. We realized with our busy schedules that we aren't going to be able to go together every month, but one of us needs to be in the temple, so we are going to do our best to get there, one of us, every month. The kids have goals too, simple things about their behavior and attitudes. I have got to get Sophia reading before Kindergarten, Ellie was so prepared for school and I want to make sure Sophia is ready too.

This year has amazing potential. I look forward and I am nervous about the future, but I know it is all in Heavenly Father's hands. I have already started preparing myself mentally for change, for the possibility of a move in a year, it is going to be hard on me but I know if it is the right thing for our family then it is what we need to do. Living here I have felt more stability and happiness than I have felt in a long time. Life is easy here, we have amazing friends, fantastic schools for the kids, a wonderful neighborhood, a fantastic ward family, and so many more wonderful things. It would be hard to leave, but that is part of life sometimes.

So, here my little Gradon, he is getting so big! He is a really funny little boy. He is learning and doing so much, he wants to be part of whatever is going on, and has the cutest smile and personality. The girls and I have been playing a lot of games lately to pass the time while Ellie is home. One of the games they love to play is Bananagrams, a fun word game like scrabble. Gradon likes to play too, by taking everyone's tiles and putting them back in the little banana bag. Happy New Year Everyone!