Monday, September 24, 2012

final summer days

summer is over! marit was disappointed that it was not immediately cooler on the first day of fall, but we know that weather is coming. last week, i took adam on a picnic date (this was a very restful and affordable way to date)and we also hit the zoo with some sweet friends.

this picture reminded me of the one below from a few years ago...can you tell marit and miles are related?

Sunday, September 23, 2012

1st suzuki concert

last weekend, the suzuki group we are a part of had their fall concert at an outdoor festival. marit has only been taking lessons for a couple months, but she is close enough to playing twinkle and the concert was casual enough that her teacher encouraged her participation. we were just hoping for a good first stage experience without trauma or drama. the suzuki group has a wide range of ages and skills so the program started with the hardest music and progressed to easier pieces, ending with the first song everyone learns...twinkle, twinkle. kids were just added as they knew songs. i misunderstood when we were supposed to send marit up and sent her onstage a couple songs too early. i realized it too late and just whispered "don't freak out" while she stood in the front row onstage, looked confused, and then put her violin up, watched the teacher and played her own version of the twinkle samba and scramble that she has not yet learned. she had a blast, kept her composure, swayed back and forth, and was relieved when it was time for the familiar peanut-butter crackers twinkle. it was scorching hot, so we had snow cones afterwards. we even had some sweet friends come for marit's very first concert and she got a lot of encouragement from her brothers and daddy (who made it from work just in time, thanks to kind co-workers), and grandma.  i love that this group encourages structure and practice, but also emphasizes the importance of enjoying music with others.  what a fun time!
tuning corner
miles with his bud daniel

marit loves how the older kids play in funny positions

rest position

Sunday, September 16, 2012

happy 33rd babe

my favorite human is 33 today...dangerously close to the mid-30s. in typical form, he is selflessly working hard "taking care of sick people" (as marit says). there is much about this man i could praise...i am so thankful he is my husband and the father of our precious littles. praise God for His grace in adam's life that extends to us through him all the time. we are so thankful for good things like the birthdays of the ones we love. all he requested this year: homemade pizza (specifically chicken-enchilada) with homemade crust for dinner, wacky cake for dessert and amish breakfast casserole for breakfast. i love to love adam with food...he is a pleasure to cook for as everything i make is his "favorite."
here is some footage from a recent family picnic lunch...watching the alligator who was unknowingly 10 yards away from our picnic table, before we heard him splash back into the pond.

always making up songs about things

we loved watching this anhinga (or snake-bird) dive and fish up close

Saturday, September 15, 2012

i'll meet you at the top of the coconut tree

the kids have always loved chicka chicka boom boom, but had no idea what a coconut was until the other day. thanks to our kind neighbors returning from florida with an afternoon of entertainment in real live coconuts!

no joke to peel these things

endless supply of chew-toys

finally made it to the seed

draining the milk

her words: "it's really good" did not match her face


Sunday, September 9, 2012

how about some fall weather slowly making its way down south! we are so thankful as we love to be outside together, exploring creation. adam has wonderfully fond memories of fishing as a boy and with marit and graham's love for nature budding, has been wanting to take them out. after digging in our fertile backyard for worms,he took them to the pond where he grew up fishing (thanks dave and carol for the supplies) and marit caught her first fish-a bream that plopped back into the water.

over the weekend, they took a little longer of an adventure to one of our favorite spots. someone may have fallen in the pond while reaching for a dragon-fly. it was fairly terrifying to father and son and humiliating to graham. thankfully, he caught his first fish shortly after being pulled from the muck ( a grace, if you will) and was able to recover. he was dancing around when they got home and chanting 'i- caught-a-blue-gill.' marit caught a turtle shortly thereafter. of course everything was thrown back.  i was home napping off a head-cold with the butternut, but i know we will enjoy many outdoor adventures this fall....including visiting tom, kel et al in maine in just a couple weeks!  anyone have advice for airplane travel with 3 small ones?  this will be the first flight for them all.
adam found this beautiful emperor moth in the parking deck at work.  this is just before it landed on me, laid eggs and flew away.
adam's childhood pond is being overrun with ducks and geese

Saturday, September 1, 2012

well, hello september

how about a picture post to document the recent weeks? we've been settling into a rhythm of sorts with homeschool. i don't have any pictures of our first day. if i did, you would probably see both female members of this family in tears. it has not been that bad since, though i'm sure we are bound to have more hard days. i really don't know what i'm doing.  we are learning and we are stumbling and trying to figure it all out, praying for grace, realizing how weak and inadequate we are. go read this for more on that.

 also, i'm really struggling to figure out adam's totally random schedule. since when was i so controlling about schedules? seriously. i find myself having to study my calendar each week because i just can't remember which weird shift falls on which days and when will i exercise (i'm addicted you know) and when will we have real dinners (as in not flat-bread pizza or quesadillas)? and if adam is home in the morning, do we skip school? do i keep the kids on the same schedule all the time? how do we flex and still educate around here? i'm sure those of you with experience with rotating schedules have some advice to share?

 i'm not complaining, just trying to figure it out. adam looooves his new program and is learning so much and he is home more than last year for sure. i'm also so thankful to be homeschooling this year because otherwise marit would go days without seeing him and that would be hard on both. plus, he loves to be involved in the adventure/explore nature part of it all. here are some pictures of life lately. it is full and we are thankful!
love this photo a friend shot.  miles has hair (and it's fiber-optic)!  and i think he looks a lot like his daddy.

this kid would spend all day stalking creatures in the yard.  the humidity has slowed him down a little, so he does it shirtless.  classy?

sometimes our learning happens here.  here they are taking apart some interesting plant stem.

sometimes learning happens here (sometimes graham does wear shirts)

cutie pie/trouble maker

sometimes he "helps" me make peanut butter (peanut-butter-nut might be his new nickname)

i buy more than 20 bananas a week for these monkeys (graham is wearing his super-hero cape)

handwriting while miles is so quiet under the table

covering himself in stickers.  i let him do it.

nature often finds a way inside...

sometimes we have a substitute teacher

her pupils are eager

this week's shipment of diapers and flour has provided us with this entertaining box

and all this craft paper for our Joseph coats of many colors to go with our week's history lesson

today we braved the humidity and tore out our mostly dead summer garden and planted a few fall plants.  we found this night-crawler

and this SNAKE.  i caught it and squealed a little.

marit was convinced of it's undying affection for her

looking it up in daddy's reptile book...just a friendly earth-snake.  we let it go back in our garden

poor thing is getting molars, but also more words, and sweet blonde curls in the back.  i don't think i will be able to cut his curls off for a while, even if they do get sweaty and mostly smell like vinegar.

what's not to love about getting original art in the mail? my sister is so talented and has been learning to etch.  love it char!

got to water

miles does not want graham's ever-willing assistance

dirty summer yard legs and crooked shorts