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Friday, May 29, 2015

2015 Week Fifteen | April 6 - April 12

We brought Ian's Case back with us when we came home from Easter.  He had been given it for his second birthday, but we've never had a big enough space to store it until now. I wish we would have brought it back sooner, because they played with it every day for two weeks following, and it still gets ridden every time they're outside.  And Annaliese, jammies and all, is able to give Ian a wagon ride as well.  

We drove home Tuesday in snow, and Annaliese jumped right out of the car and had a run in it... 
and attempted to catch some flakes. 
Later that night Ian had his spring sing.  It was a strange drive because there was snow on the ground at our house both before and after the show, but at the school, just two miles away, there was absolutely none.  Ian's spring sing was all about songs from around the world. They opened with "It's a Small World."  My favorite song they sang was "Don Gato."
The same week it snowed, we were out later in short sleeves attempting to fly kites.  They wouldn't stay aloft too long, though, so we eventually called it quits. 

Annaliese had taken UNO cards to school for "U" week at school. We decided to play after dinner one night. Turns out she must have been practicing at school, because she understands fully how to play. What was even more amazing to me was how she could fan out all her cards and hold them. Ian is still mastering this skill. 

Thursday, May 28, 2015

2015 Week Fourteen | March 30 - April 5

This was the week of Easter. For the first time in my teaching career, I had Good Friday and the Monday following Easter off, so we were able to visit family for the holiday.

While the long weekend back was mostly about eggs, the kids (and in this case, me) had a lot of fun playing games, too.  They may have been some whining and complaining when someone fell, so we only played a few rounds because it got really annoying when it happened over and over...
Ian challenged Grandpa to a few games of chess, and even though Grandpa claimed to be rusty from not playing in awhile, it must be like riding a bicycle, because he beat Ian.  

The same couldn't be said for Grandma, though, who suffered one loss after another in Guess Who at the hands of Annaliese. I even started monitoring to see if Annaliese was answering the questions correctly and she was. 

Playing with cousins couldn't be beat, either.  They all took turns giving each other tractor rides, and Oliver brought his pedal tractor over as well and they had races.  
We did some experimenting with dyes this year- we used food coloring and vinegar here instead of the PAAS tabs like in years past and it worked wonderfully.  Doubt we'll go back to buying them again. 

This photo just cracks me up. It's really distorted :) 

While we used the PAAS here, Grandma also tried dry rice that had been died with food coloring.  Just add that and an egg in a ziploc and shake, shake, shake.  The egg came out looking very textured.  

Classic hiding spot. Didn't trick her!

Not so much a fan of prickly bushes, but he was able to get his egg, anyway. 

Pointing out Emery's orange egg to her and talking to her in a voice a few octaves higher than normal, trying to encourage her to get it.  


Wednesday, May 27, 2015

2015 Week Thirteen | March 23 - March 29

One of the problems with working on project life spreads later than the actual week is that you don't realize you only have a few photos for the week until it's too late.  The good this is that the week of May 27 will have a lot of pictures; fear of having another week with so few pictures causes me to grab the camera and get snapping.

Apparently all the spring break shots wore me out, because this week I have pictures of an Easter egg hunt at Boy Scout camp, a Husker baseball game, and Annaliese, who's always asking for her picture to be taken.


Sunday after church we headed to a Boy Scout Camp in town for an Easter egg hunt. 
The best part was the eggs were hidden in the woods.  They had easier spots for the younger kids, but after those were found and they sent us out again, you really had to traipse around the woods to find them. 

Not sure who had more fun on the hunt, this guy or me, when it came to hunting for ones that may have been overlooked. 
Friday night Darrin was able to win suite seats from work for the Husker baseball game. Luckily Marlena and Noah were able to keep the kids overnight so we had a proper date night.  You could tell we were newbie, however, because we assumed suite meant indoor seats. Little did we know they'd be outside in temps right around 50. It was just a bit chilly... We joined one of Darrin's co-workers and his wife for pizza after the game at Yia Yia's.  Not sure I've been out that late (10 pm), especially for dinner, in a long time.  

This girl. Should I be worried she likes to pose and have her picture taken?

Tuesday, May 26, 2015

2015 Week Twelve | March 16 - March 22

Well today began the first day of summer vacation, and what better way to kick it off than by sharing pictures of the last half of spring break... I'm just a bit behind, if you can't tell (what's new?!).  

Spring break continued for Monday and Tuesday of this week, then we all headed back to school on Wednesday. Darrin headed back to work full time. I teased that since we were home all day, he decided he'd rather be at work.  At the end of the week, we celebrated a little guy's second birthday (and Annaliese got sick). 

Monday was spent exploring the botanical gardens.  They built a beautiful conservatory, which is very hot and humid inside due to the tropical plants growing there.  It was beautiful. The kids had fun exploring all it's hidden corners. 

But the real reason we went to the gardens was to check out the Lego sculptures. They had something similar several years ago, and a different set of sculptures were back this year.  

This rototiller was fun- chilling on a shelf above the blades was a Lego dude chilling and eating pizza.  

Gotta love photo ops. 

After the gardens, we headed to the zoo.  It took us an hour to get in, something unheard of, but we had to wait in a crazy long line to renew our membership (apparently the fact it was over 80 that day brought a lot of people out).  We were running short on time after that, so we had to hit our favorite spots. Top of the list- the aquarium. 

Another stop was the fossil dig, which is thankfully little tiny rubber pellets, so they don't have sand stuck to them all day long. 

And a stop to see the sea lions. Ian wants to grow up and be a zoologist, specifically he wants to train the sea lions to do tricks.  I think we need to go to Sea World...
Tuesday we were lazy enjoying the last day of break, except for Ian, who had to finish his spring break work packet.  No idea how that's comfortable, but apparently it gets the job done (note to self, we need to buy higher stools for this house). 
This big guy turned TWO and we celebrated on Saturday at his pigeon party.  Well, Ian and I did. Annaliese threw up over the night, so Darrin stayed home with her. 
Ian discovered what it's like to be the only kid over 4 at the party.  He was quite adept at the games, and I could usually find him in Walter's room reading books instead of playing with the kids. 

Speaking of Walter- Godmom Selfie! 

And that girl who was sick during the night, yeah, she probably could have gone to the party judging how good she felt while playing at home with Darrin. 

Selfie with Daddy :) 


Sunday, May 3, 2015

2015 Week Eleven | March 9 - March 15

After a beginning of the week that was same-old, same-old, the second half of the week brought spring break.  
Spring break began with Ian's first sleepover. I picked him and his best friend up after school and they had so much fun exploring the woods behind our house... 
playing X-BOX... 
and air hockey.  It was a success and I'm sure he'll be back a lot.  He's such a polite and loving kid; Ian couldn't have chosen a better one for his best friend.  
We met Ian's friend's mom at the school playground, and after playing outside for awhile, it was hot and, being the person that I am who never passes up a reason to have ice cream, we headed to DQ to cool down. 
The kids had fun at the school playground the day before (it's not the school Ian attends- he goes to one farther from home, but closer to where I work), so we decided to ride bikes to it the next day and play again.  I opted to "walk" so I could help Annaliese on the hills, but when she was on flats, I ended up running to keep up.  I think this will be a common thing this summer, and hopefully she won't need my help on the hills and I can ride my bike, too.
Having fun at the park swinging. 

That weekend there was a birthday party for my grandma.  In route, we realized Ian had forgotten his books at home. The kid reads three to four hundred pages a weekend, so this was a huge catastrophe.  Kindle, McDonald's wifi, and a public library that allows Kindle checkouts to the rescue.  He discovered the "Heroes in Training" series and was in heaven... once we constructed some shade so he could see the screen. 

The birthday girl's party was a luau theme at a hotel pool. Youngest 85-year-old I know.  She loved watching her great-grandchildren having fun in the pool 
The kids only got out to eat, and when my aunt we were supposed to stay with came down with the flu, the kids convinced me to stay at the hotel so they could swim in the morning. Hoping for some great weather this summer so we can enjoy our pool at home.  
On the drive home on Sunday, I may have planned it so that we left the motel at the perfect time to stop by Steak and Shake for lunch... just to make Darrin, who stayed home (something about a recently broken leg and a four-hour car ride...)  jealous.  The kids were complaining when we got there, and asking to stop the next time we drove by when we left.  Nothing beats their shakes and cheese fries.  YUM!


Saturday, May 2, 2015

2015 Week Ten | March 2 - March 8

This week brought the last of the birthday celebrations.  The first was February 7 when Ian had friends over for a party. That following weekend was Ian's actual birthday and parties for both kids (the art party) with Darrin's family and our friends.  Then there was Annaliese's actual birthday a few weeks later, which then leads to this weekend and my family's opportunity to come out to celebrate with both kids.  Tis the season for birthdays :)

As soon as Ian and I got home from school on Friday (Darrin and Grandpa had picked up Annaliese earlier), the kids were allowed to break into their presents.  

One present didn't need to be opened, though, and that was his air hockey table.  I think his expression says it all. It has gotten lots of playtime already. 
Great Billie gave the kids bat and ball sets, which they put into action immediately. They both connected with the ball immediately, and shouts of, "HOME RUN!" rang out with each hit.  

Noah, Marlena, and the boy came up Friday night to celebrate again.  Ian had been playing checkers with Grandpa and next it was on to teaching Marlena how to play chess. 


Best thing about birthday parties to me is the cake. All baked out from the other parties, Ian and I stopped by Dairy Queen and picked up the best type of cake- ice cream cake.  Being the awesome brother he is, he picked a pink and purple cake because he knew Annaliese would love it. 

Cousin fun- Oliver taught Annaliese how to flip off the couch.  

Normally Ian and Oliver are joined at the hip and Annaliese is outside looking in.  Ian was obsessed with reading his Percy Jackson series book this weekend, though, ignoring pretty much all to finish all 500+ pages that weekend.  That left Annaliese and Oliver as playmates, and it was much fun watching the Barbies and princesses play with the firefighters and construction workers.  

Monday she celebrated her birthday at preschool, where she got her birthday crown... 

And posed for pictures in her crown and favorite dress.