Monday, December 22, 2014

Links new attitude

We've been blessed with a pretty well behaved child in Link for a few years now.  At 5 years old he is finally starting to express his desire for boundaries in every way possible.  He argues that kids can make up the house rules too and parents should do what he says.  

Needless to say, Bryce and I have been watching YouTube clips of super nanny and spending lots of time encouraging one another to keep up the good work of being patient, calm, and collected.  Boy is it draining.  

I'm also thinking a little bit more about putting him in kindergarten next year.  I don't want to call kindergarten daycare but at this point in time it's kind of what I am looking at it as.  I want to homeschool but need to work during the day.  Links other option would be daycare and I don't know of any in the area that would take a 6 year old.  It would be good for him to be with some more kids his age.  Plus school is free.  I don't feel like he will learn anything more academically than he already knows.  I hope it will not crush his spirit or joy of learning.  There are a lot of things I am nervous about.  He doesn't like competitive play, he doesn't like getting dirty, he likes to play one on one with others.  If he does go to kindergarten I am not going to look at it as something he needs to be at all the time.  When he needs breaks we will take them.  

My life really feels like a mess right now.  If I was a stay at home mom I feel like it would be less stressful.  But I love my job and don't want to quit.  I also make little money so I don't want Bryce to quit either.  Why didn't I quit six months in when I didn't like it.  

Felix developments

Felix is showing a lot of language development.  He is starting to imitate some signs (though not consistently).  I think I have seen nurse, all done, and bye.

He also is doing a very good job imitating noises, from a scream to a burp to just normal conversation. He loves to sing along to songs and drum.  He often is finding cylindrical things like markers or blocks to drum.  He has long been using a low sound for cars and he also does it for cows mooing and boo.

His socializing is improving.  He has gone from giving everyone eyebrows ( the common reply I got from strangers was "oh, he doesn't like me.") to giving out smiles.  

He understands no pretty well.  He seems to understand he shouldn't be putting everything in his mouth.  Link still doesn't want him around his Legos though.  But while the cats away...

He still holds on while walking around things but he is a fast crawler and can do all the steps very easily.  

He is about 25 lbs, has lots of curly red hair with a double cowlick in the middle that is impossible.  He loves to pinch and feed himself peas, carrots, beans, and puffs.

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Halloween 2014

Halloween was on a Friday.  we had just gotten back from Minneapolis the day before and were a bit exhausted.  Still we had fun.  I bought my entire witch costume dress, hat, jewelry in Elkader.  The tights and makeup at Walmart.  Bryce shaved the beard to paint his face.  We found his costume at target.  I got links vampire costume second hand.  I knew he didn't care much if he was a vampire so I bought the Lego hat for him on etsy and added some felt teeth, eyebrows and hair.  We made hands out of can coozies.  I sewed Felix's mummy costume on the drive to Minneapolis.  Lots of cheesecloth on a hoodie and some old pants.  He doesn't like anything on his head right now so I knew I wouldn't get away with a hat.

After work we went to the library for some games.
Here is link throwing sacks into the toilet.

Felix wasn't liking the cold so Bryce stayed home with him while Link and I went trick or treating.

When we got home we broke a bunch of glow sticks, put on a pandora rave station and danced into the night.  

October weeks

1. Went to Osborne heritage days.  Fry bread tacos and homemade rootbeer.  We meet the new bear cub too.  Link is studying native Americans and Osborne had a teepee and buffalo stew and arrowheads and much more.

2. Our first Harvest Festival in Elkader went well.

Felix won first place in his age group.  I actually was a little embarrassed because there were pumpkins done by little kids who actually knew what they were doing, but I didn't know who the judges were so I couldn't do anything about it.  Free pizza.

3. One busy Sunday we picked up Norwegian dinner to go.
Took the family and a 4h group to see Curious George the musical in Dubuque.
Then Bryce immediately left for Madison to see John Hodgman.

4. We were invited to the mfl mar Mac Halloween bash (which was crazy for this claustraphobic lady).  Since our intended Halloween costumes were not finished we dug out a lungi costume for Link.  He loved it and ran around like lungi, stopping to jump while kicking his leg out and saying "doink". We had a dragon costume and I added some red eyebrows and hair and a black collar and writ cuffs to be kuppa.  Then they were from the same game, no matter how abstract.

5 .  Bryce and Felix and I went to Minneapolis for a 4h convention.  Loved the convention.  Dent love Felix vomiting on me for the first 12 hours of it.  Link stayed at my parents.  We had a great view of th city and ate at some great places in Nicolette.  I especially loved the French bakery where Bryce and I had crepes for lunch and macaroons for dessert.  Here is a great front back Bryce took from our room.
The staff was above and beyond friendly and all the sessions were stellar.  It was one of my first times in a hotel where I never watched TV.

Autumn skies

We had a gorgeous fall, with beautiful leaves and perfect temps 50-70.  Bryce couldn't stop taking photos of the beauty.

More Jack Skellington Activities

Jack o lantern pancakes.

Crayon resist watercolor.  Jack wanted up to paint ghosts.  We ended up sending secret messages and making things magically appear in the glass dessert cloche.

Tea bag ghosts.  These puppies flew really high and delighted us all.

Turn a pink flamingo into a vulture.  Maybe this would have looked scarier if I hadn't  run out of black paint.

Make a haunted house.

Frankenstein pudding cups

Made Halloween costumes for Legos.  Spider-Man was Merida,  friends girl was malicifent, and yellow guy is a robot.

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

While you were out

Things I missed while I was busy this last month (but Bryce captured for me)

1. Felix walking around all the furniture

2. Link in disguise

3. Felix on the steps

4. Kinderhaus crowning

5. Roasting hot dogs with Amber.

6. My mom's 60th surprise party

7. Cousin visits

Sunday, October 12, 2014

Nine years as family

Wednesday was our anniversary.  It was also a busy day.  We decided the best time for us to celebrate would be the morning due to after school programs and play practice.  Link had an optional field trip to Pinter's Pumpkin patch he could go to with Kinderhaus so we brought him up to that.  Then Bryce and I went the the magpie coffee house where we had some coffee and breakfast.

Yes that would be a toy on the table.  Felix did crash the date.

I had recently looked up the 9th anniversary gift and it is pottery.  Doh, we have a pottery friend but too late for that.  So instead we walked over to the clay studio to check it out.  Unfortunately wed hours were in the afternoon.  Bryce then had the idea to check out the little fashion boutique we have never been too which translates to "little sister" but is in Norwegian.  These were lots of great clothes there for women and also for kids, but not men, lots priced lower than I expected and stuff actually fit and looked good.  As a gift Bryce got me a leather cuff from there with a quote from our wedding.  

I also got Bryce (our entire family) something made out of leather though it was the wrong year.  These two living room pieces are exactly what we needed for our space.

Apple pie is our traditional anniversary food.  This year I still had lots of apples left from Shihata's so I had Link help me bake an apple pie.  With premade pie crust it was pretty easy to make.  We made it during the hour I had between work and play practice and ate it when I came home.

Plagman's Barn

A couple of weekends ago we decided to check out Plagman Barn days.  We have made ads for them for 7 years or so but have never gone to the event,  I'm glad we did.  It is a festival much like Osborne, but with even more hands on exhibits and activities, and even better features like the school house and blacksmith shop.  

I really enjoyed the barn dance.  The music was great and I loved seeing, what I assume to be, widows dancing together to still enjoy their favorite past time without their husbands.  The event was originally created to save this old dance hall barn, so to experience a dance in the barn made the event so worthwhile.

Link enjoyed lots of hands on activities, which were all labeled "not responsible for accidents".

Here he is at the corn sheller.

Writing his and Felix's name on the board.

Making rope.

Felix was on my back all day so didn't get in any shots.  Here he is when we returned home, enjoying the empty bottle of sarsaparilla.  

Clayton county extension after school programming

So besides being in musicals and raising children, I do work.  And I absolutely love my job.  I've recently received 5 different grants, 3 of which are project based, so not only do we get money, we get training.  I love going to trainings.  They make me feel like I am in school again and I loved being in school because I love to compete intellectually.   I get a rush out if being the winner in constructing the windmill that will lift the most weight (mine lifted 16 washers, second place got 4) against a room full of science and physics teachers.  Although I do have to say it bothers me a little to be the only adult to figure out how to make the gravity ca actually go when I'm not even a teacher..  Every time I go to a training, around noon i start thinking, "I should have been an engineer."  Then we come back from lunch, start collecting data and the fun is over.

1. A still from my gravity car

2.  My solar powered cave.  We were suppose to make houses, but I've been on a caveMan kick lately.

I also work with kids.  My long term goal is to train volunteer leaders to lead these groups, but finding volunteers is not easy.  So I do programming 3-4 days a week.  All the groups are considered 4h clubs and it was 4h week so many are pictured with this year's theme.

1. Puppet theater

2. Central's lego league, the cyborg narwhals.  (Not pictured is my mfl mar Mac group)

3. My Hyperstream crew learning indesign.

4. These three are all from my technical theater group in Clayton ridge.  

Blood, wrinkles, facial hair and more

Cooking up some breakaway glass

Stage sets for characters they drew out of a hat.