Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Week 21

Only 2 more weeks of school left and just one more project due before we can relax a bit.  Did I say relax?  Yeah, right!  That is not going to happen until I'm out of here on a plane to Europe. Thankfully we just had a nice long weekend and I got a lot of stuff done but there is still sooo much to do.  At least these last couple weeks should fly by. 

Now for last week's photos before I forget and move on-

Day 141- Sunday, 5/20/12
We got a solar cover for our pool and Tyler helped John cut it down to size.  It's kind of a pain to take on and off, but it does help keep the pool warmer so maybe I'll use it more.  I'm not a fan of swimming in cold water even when it's really hot out.

Day 142- Monday, 5/21/12
Time to vote absentee ballot style! It's so much easier this way than having to make the time to head to the polls.  You just have to remember to do it early so your vote gets in in time to count.

Day 143- Tuesday, 5/22/12
I just dropped the younger boys off at the community center for karate class.  Tyler will show up an hour later for the next class.  It's a beautiful day out.

Day 144- Wednesday, 5/23/12
He got the job!  What a great experience for him.  Remember the job application he filled out a couple weeks ago for a volunteer position at summer camp?  Well they called him last week for a job interview and told him there were 30 kids who applied for about 20 positions and that they would let him know this week and he just got a call saying he's in. Good for him!

Day 145- Thursday, 5/24/12
Brandon collected all his little stuffed animal dogs and made up a cozy basket for them that he carts around.  They are getting read to read stories before bed.  He's so cute and nurturing.

Day 146- Friday, 5/25/12
It's author day at the school so I cut out of work early to have lunch with my boys and listen to their stories.  Justin had to write and illustrate a 24 page chapter book this year.  That was a huge project, but he did a great job.

Day 147- Saturday, 5/26/12
It's been like two weeks since I got the new comforters for the younger boys, and I'm just now finding the time today put them on the beds.  It feels good to get all the junk out of there and set up new rules about not keeping so many toys in the bed.  Of course now it's all stuffed in their closet so I have that deal with that, but at least I can shut the door and not have to see it every time I walk into the room.

Wait!  One more--

May's Family Photo

   We took the cover off the pool so we could enjoy it for the holiday weekend, and I wanted a picture of us all in the pool but it was really too windy and cold out.  The water actually felt great but we couldn't stand to be outside for long with the weather like it was.  Go figure!

That's it!  Thanks for stopping by and see you next Tuesday.


Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Week 20

Still plugging along trying to find the time to get tons of things done before our trip.  Achieving a work/life balance is really hard sometimes, but I'm doing the best I can and just taking it one day at a time.  There really needs to be more hours in the day and more weekend days.  Thanks goodness we have a 3-day weekend coming up.  I really need that now!

Enjoy the craziness from last week:

Day 134- Sunday, 5/13/12
Happy Mother's Day!  I aways get a picture with my boys out by the roses on Mother's Day.  The only problem is it's bright out and they always squint with their light-sensitive blue eyes.  Oh well, they're still cute ;0)

Day 135- Monday, 5/14/12
My wonderful husband and beautiful boys gave me a Kindle Fire for Mother's Day.  It's the perfect thing to take on my up coming trip!  Today I tried to carve out some time to play a bit and load it with lot's of goodies.

Day 136- Tuesday, 5/15/12
We're missing someone.  There is an empty chair at the counter as my oldest son is in LA with his class for their 8th grade trip.  He left yesterday morning and returns tomorrow evening.  I miss him but am not missing all the activities I usually have to shuttle him to and from.

Day 137- Wednesday, 5/16/12
The red Day Lilies are in bloom out front.  They come into bloom every May.  I remember when we first looked at this house to consider a purchase.   It was late May and the lilies were very beautiful out front against the red brick.  I loved them then and still love them some 7 yrs later

Day 138- Thursday, 5/17/12
He's done with his state report!  Justin has been working on this since February.  He chose Oregon because his grandparents live there.  They had to do an ABC book filled with state facts, work up a travel brochure, write a letter to the state for information, work up a display poster and also bring in a state food to share with the class.  He worked so hard and is so happy to be done.  My favorite part is the animals he added around the tree--that is so him!

Day 139- Friday, 5/18/12
Umbrella Boy!  John is all about the umbrellas in the back yard and a new one came today.  I think we have 4 or 5 now.  He's prepping for Memorial Day weekend.  His thinking is you can never have enough shade.  I'm thinking we have way too many umbrellas.

Day 140- Saturday, 5/19/12
It's the Blue and White swim meet--the first meet of the season for time trials.  This is Tyler swimming the breast stroke.  All the boys did great, and I feel better today after seeing how they handled it about leaving them alone to fend for themselves at a meet while we are out of the country.  It's amazing how self sufficient they can be when they know they have too.

All done!  Thanks for stopping by. 
Now back to work for me.  Another busy and full day in the lab.  Did I mention how much I need a 3-day weekend??


Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Week 19

Happy Tuesday!  I hope everyone had a good Mother's Day weekend.  I was sufficiently spoiled by my wonderful husband and beautiful boys.  They know how to treat me right!  Now it's back to the grind and work is crazy as ever with a huge meeting I've organized and am running today so I've got to make this quick.

Here are last week's pictures:

Day 127- Sunday, 5/6/12
Tyler attended a swim clinic where he got to swim with Olympians!  They gave the kids pointers on their strokes, took pictures with them, and allowed them to where their medals.  It was a great experience, and look at all the loot he came home with.  Next year we'll have to send Justin too.

Day 128- Monday, 5/7/12

Brandon was so excited to start this new book series about wolves.  He saw it at the school's book fair and wanted to buy it, but they only had book 4 available so I told him I would get him the first few books from Amazon.  They came in the mail today and he hasn't put book 1 down since.  Every time I turn around there he is with his nose stuck in the book and then he's excited to tell me what happened after each chapter.  I love fostering and nurturing a love for books in my children.

Day 129- Tuesday, 5/8/12
Last month Tyler got new bedding and this month the younger boys got theirs.  Sadly it's now been almost a week since these arrived and I've yet to find the time to actually get them on the beds.  Looks at all the stuff in there I'll have to sort through before I can even attempt new bedding.  Some things are going to change about how much stuff they can keep in there beds once I get them all cleaned out!

Day 130- Wednesday, 5/9/12
Tyler's teaching Bella how to wait patiently for a Cheez-it placed on her nose.  It's a work in progress that she hasn't quite mastered yet but she's more than willing to try.  Anything for a Cheez-it!!!

Day 131- Thursday, 5/10/12
The younger boys have been having fun climbing the rock wall at the rec center while they wait for Tyler's swim practice to end and theirs to begin.  It's a wonderful way to keep them busy and active during that hour they have to kill.  Justin can make it all the way to the top and Brandon is just now learning but can make it about halfway.

Day 132- Friday, 5/11/12
Look what came in the mail today!!  It's our travel documents for the Europe trip next month.  Makes it seem more real.  We are actually going to do this, and I can't wait.

Day 133- Saturday, 5/12/12
Justin had his friend, Brody, he met at the MIND Institute sleepover today.  These two hit it off right from the start back in Nov., but only get to see each other once a week in group so it was nice for them to have more time together just to play.  When they finally got bored of video games I suggested they work on a Lego set Justin still hadn't put together after his birthday back in March. That turned out to be the perfect activity for them to try together.  I love how Brody is looking over his glasses because Justin does the exact same thing all the time!  Too bad he didn't actually do it in this picture too.

That's all for now.  See you next week.


Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Week 18

What a great week! It's was very busy, but there was lots of sunshine and good times.  The month of May just started but seems like it's flying by so fast, and I'm afraid it will only get worse before it gets better.  We have so much going on this month, and it seems like I hardly see my older son anymore.  I guess I should be happy he's so active and involved, but at the same time I hate to see him grow up too quick.  Hopefully once school is out we can regroup and slow things down a bit to enjoy our family more--well after Europe anyway ;0)

Here are last week's pictures:

Day 120- Sunday, 4/29/12
How crazy is this?  The boys were able to use the pool for the first time this year in April!  I don't think we were able to get in last year until the first week in June.  The water is still pretty cold but it was hot enough out that they found it refreshing.  Me, I just watched them while sipping a cold drink by the pool.  It's still not warm enough for my liking.

Day 121- Monday, 4/30/12
I needed something tall and narrow to add to this table beside our arm chair and this Eiffel tower fit the bill.  I like looking at it when I'm feeling overwhelmed (almost daily these days) to remind me of my upcoming escape.  It will also be nice to remind the boys where we are when we are gone, plus once we return it will hopefully remind us of our wonderful trip.  We leave in a month!

Day 122- Tuesday, 5/1/12
Happy May day!  Justin was kind enough to take this picture of me posing as the monthly marker in or flower beds around the pool.  I love how the foliage here has really filled in over the past couple years.

Day 123- Wednesday, 5/2/12
Tyler is filling out his first job application!  It's a volunteer position to be a Teen Hero at the local summer camps and he's looking forward to the experience.  He grew up in those camps and is now ready to give back.

Day 124- Thursday, 5/3/12
More pool time!  Most afternoons we are here at the city's rec pool for swim team and soon water polo as well.  The first shot is Tyler swimming in the foreground and then a shot of his brothers with Coach Kurt while waiting for their turn.  I've been doing well working out in the rec center while the younger two are in the pool which is the only way I can squeeze in exercise these days.

Day 125- Friday, 5/4/12
May the 4th be with you!  Lego was really pushing a Star Wars sale today.  We already have plenty of Lego Star Wars in this house although I'm sure my boys would always like more.  Tyler's very first Lego set was a huge Star Wars set from his uncles when he was 4 that John had to put together for him.  Little did I know then that my house would soon be taken over by Legos of all kinds.

Day 126- Saturday, 5/5/12
For Cinco de Mayo we made nachos which were a huge hit with the boys.  John was helping Justin get more creative about what to add to his helping like hot sauce and jalapenos.  He's probably the most adventurous one when it comes to food and has more taste along John's liking than mine.

That's it for now.  Thanks for stopping by and see you next week.


Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Week 17

Happy May Day!  It's hard to believe we are starting May already, but I'm ready.  It will most certainly be a busy month that will fly by.  There is a lot to do before our big trip to Europe, and its the last month of school for the kids.  Wow!  Summer is right around the corner.  It even felt like it this past weekend.  It was so warm my kids  swam in our pool.  The water is still too cold for me, but it sure was nice to sit out there and relax with a refreshing drink after some yard work.  I could use more of that!  It almost makes up for the lack of pool time we got in Vegas.  I love my little backyard retreat.

OK, here's a peek at what last week looked like-

Day 113- Sunday, 4/122/12
I missed my boys and am happy to be home after our short trip to Vegas.  How will I last 16 days in Europe without them?

Day 114- Monday, 4/23/12
Brandon is now wanting to read quietly on his own.  My baby is growing up, but I love that he still needs his favorite snuggle toy to do so.

Day 115- Tuesday, 4/24/12
I noticed there were a few rose bushes around the neighborhood in bloom so I peeked out back to see if any of ours were, and sure enough, we had some beautiful roses basking in the sun.  It must mean Mother's day is right around the corner and is one of the many signs marking the changes from spring to summer.

Day 116- Wednesday, 4/25/12
On Survivor night I let the kids pop popcorn, and Justin has learned how to take care of this task, but he's still a little messy getting the popcorn in the bowls.  Bella knows this all to well and will sit patiently waiting for a few nibbles to drop.

Day 117- Thursday, 4/26/12
Here's some more changes.  It's time for a room update.  Tyler's old comforter was worn and he really needed something a little more grown up looking so I found this one for him at Target.  Now we need to get rid of all the cutesy sports stuff and give his room more of an edgy look to go with the spread.  I'm thinking he may need a bigger bed too or at least one without a foot board!

Day 118- Friday, 4/27/12
It's so nice out today that we spent the afternoon in the backyard with the dog.  Most of the time Bella is in the house or confined to her dog run so it's a treat for her to be able to run free in the yard and she especially loves my flower beds.  I just happened to catch her peeking up out of this bush waiting for an opportunity to bound after the boys. 

This is my favorite of the month ;0)

Day 119- Saturday, 4/28/12
Hmmm, lot's of dog pictures this week.  That was not really planned, but I love it.  She is a big part of our life after all.  Spring cleaning includes cleaning the dog!  She really needs a bath and today was the perfect day for that.

Wait!  One more:

April's Family Photo

The weather's been so nice that it seemed only fitting to take our monthly family photo outside.

Well, that's enough for this week.  Thanks for stopping by and see you next week hopefully with more outdoor pictures.  We're finally loving the weather here in sunny California.