Around Here Nine: 02/24-03/02

Friday, March 3, 2017

A little glimpse into what it is like to live in our home just this minute.

Intentional Outdoor Hours: 23+ hours (of 1000)
Only another two hours and change to add this week.  After a beautiful day on Friday (like mid-70's!), the weather made a turn for the winter again and we've had cold temps, rain, crazy wind, and snow even as late again.  We enjoyed Friday though outside and our hopes are up for spring to make her return soon.  Driving home from the bus stop on Friday, Grey said, 'It smells like fishing camp out here!' and that's got him really itching for nicer weather now.  Our fingers are crossed that it will warm up soon!

Reading The Gift of an Ordinary Day by Katrina Kenison a little less this week as we were stuck inside with the weather and I find it harder to resist doing non-productive things (like pin-searching kitchen remodel designs and 21 day fix approved meal plans (hah). 

Celebrating our five year old girl with a mermaid party at a high school swimming pool.  I made mermaid tail cupcakes (pinterest for the win always).  We ordered this Ariel bathing suit for Gem and she had a great time spending time with her friends and family who made the trek way out there (and also in a rainstorm!)

Enjoying Mardi Gras celebrations with the Mardi (bar) Crawl put together by my baby sis Uch with You in Flood City.  We were so grateful to have babysitters that night - Grey with Caleb and the Rummells and the LaBar sisters who came out to the house with the girls and Rusty!  We had a legitimate grown up real date (thank you!!) On actual Fat Tuesday, we shared this easy Kings Cake with the kids for breakfast (three babies were baked in obviously).

Laughing about Grey and his lost teeth!  He requested that his loose front teeth be pulled out two days in a row.  Brandon helps pull them after Grey really loosens them up because it is literally the single gross parenting task I cannot do - nothing else heebie-jeebie's me out except wiggly teeth!  When I told him to go brush his teeth for school the next morning, he told me, "You mean brush my gums!  I have no teeth!"  He actually loves having no front teeth (his speech sounds funny and he thinks it's hilarious) but the front two are already starting to peek out a little bit!.

Taking it slow, still.  It has been such a steady week because I've resolved to come with things as they go and take each moment one step at a time.  Not to say things have not been crazy around here (Bullet throwing up, Violet having a set back in potty training, Grey overtired and being uncharacteristically cranky, Rusty's sleep regression/snotty nose) but I'm just trying to be kind on myself and moving through tasks and needs methodically and intentionally.  Surprisingly, moving slower is leading to me accomplishing more things (how?)  I had time to get my yoga in, do regular house chores, and use the carpet scrubber in our bedroom while also switching out everyone's sheets But then also had time (AND patience) to play Family Memory with the kids and read some Dr. Seuss books (happy birthday to him!)  I don't know how it all works, but I feel so much better settling into slow (although I also have chosen to spend considerably less time on social media this, that might be part of it too).

Requesting suggestions on teaching the alphabet to my future kindergartner Gemma.  We had Kinder registration this week and it was just a big reminder that we really need to make a little progress here in the ABC department.  The thing that has me stumped (and frustrated!) is that she can write and spell aloud her name, she's a whiz at math (counting, sorting, one-to-one correlation, patterns, big/small, etc), her fine motor skills are incredible (scissors, copying words) but when it comes to recognizing and recalling the names of the ABCs it's nearly at a zero consistency - she knows G, O, and X with 100% accuracy, but every single other letter is a hit or a miss.  how? As a side note, she does have name recall issues with people too and with colors (I only just this week taught her a trick to remember the word Yellow (!!) because it rhymes with Hello and it goes with a waving hand motion).  It feels like a tactile/kinestic learning type thing - but even with all the tactile techniques, they aren't sticking.  So, help, please.  I don't like either of us being frustrated but that's where we are - any suggestions/recommendations/links and or 'I knew someone like that...' type info would be incredibly appreciated.

Making these snickerdoodle cookies with the kids that's been their goto afternoon snack this week.  I've been making for me - greek yogurt topped with chopped apple, pecans, and a sprinkle of cinnamon as my new favorite afternoon (healthy and protein filled!) treat.  We've had tacos this week, and Brandon made us Blackened Tilapia and roasted veggies on Ash Wednesday.  We had beef & cabbage stirfry last night that was enjoyed by the grown ups and Gem (standard expectations) and Grey and Violet requested otherwise.  ugh.

Sobbing about this beautiful, touching, heartbreaking article this morning.   Happy weekend, and try to keep what is really important in the front of your heart and mind. xxoxo


  1. If you're OK with using an app, my kids loved Endless Alphabet. It teaches letters, sounds, words... All in a fun, game type way. My 3 year old has a developmental/speech delay and his speech therapist recommended it.

  2. My youngest Parker had trouble with recognizing the alphabet also. We got a Leap Frog dry erase book that focuses on letters. We would work with him one letter at a time for a few days. In no time he was doing just fine.

  3. My older son had difficulty recalling various things consistently, lettered numbers colors shapes etc. First I didn't stress. I recalled how little I knew heading into kindergarten. Second I just kept incorporating whatever I was focused on at that time. For Jordan he has always been good at puzzles. So for him anything puzzle was fun not work. There was an app we had on the iPad before it broke. I can't remember the name but a group of monsters would crash through the word and he would have to put it back like a puzzle. The app said the letter I TC. It helped him a lot. Good luck. You have a really nice family.

  4. Josh cannot STAND loose teeth. It's a bummer he's a teacher because his students are constantly coming up to show him wiggly teeth, teeth that have fallen out, or huge gaps in their gums where teeth used to be. Ha!

    For the alphabet, when I worked in a special ed elementary classroom and had students who struggled, we played a fun game. We would work on only three letters at a time, and we would put them (on flashcards) around the classroom (ie On the table, By the sink, On the reading rug) The student would walk to the flash card, pick it up, and tell me the name. After they found all three, then I'd give instructions, "Put the C on the counter. Put the D on my desk. Put the E by your coat."
    Something about the physical aspect, walking around the room, made the letters stick better in their brain.

    I'm inspired by your slowing down (and somehow getting MORE done. How are you so magical?) and after the week I've had, slowing down sounds perfect!