Sunday, August 21, 2011

A nice and fun surprise

We decided to surprise the kids with something they both have been asking for for quite a long time. TENTS and SLEEPING BAGS!! While searching online for gifts for Life Saver's birthday, I decided to check things out. I came across really good deals on both items for both kids!! I placed the order and Grammie picked the items up and hid them until we were ready to surprise them!!

Daddy took the kids outside and occupied them while I put the tents together. Why I thought this was a good idea, I will never know. I have never wanted to sleep in a tent so I have never attempted to put one together. What made me think I could accomplish such a thing?!?! Grammie attempted to help me, but she is just like me. She's never liked the outdoor camping life either. Finally after hearing a snap in one of the tent poles, I gave up! I called Daddy for HELP!!

The surprise didn't quite turn out like I wanted, but you know, Life is Good. The kids were still thrilled!! Daddy had problems putting the tents together as well so I didn't feel so inadequate!! I did realize one thing, I still have absolutely no desire to sleep outdoors in a tent :)

The tents have now officially been moved from our game room into the kids beds. They love using them as a hideout and I'm ok with that! Afterall, they are only little for awhile!!

Saturday, August 20, 2011

Midwestern storms

Here in the Midwest, storms are typical. Bad storms even more so. As mentioned in a previous post, Daddy was gone to New York. Before he left, he set the sprinkler system up for us to where it would hit the garden just perfectly. All we had to do was turn on the faucet. Easy enough. Jelly Belly and Life Saver took turns doing this nightly chore. We had to wait until around 8pm each night because it was sooo hot outside. 

One night, we were sitting outside and in rolled some clouds. Ok maybe not just clouds, but storm clouds. 

 Considering we still had a great amount of sunshine as well behind me and there was neither thunder nor lightening, I figured we had a few more minutes of outside time. Sure enough. This cloud blew right over us as if to tease us with the though of some much needed rain. Oh well. The kids got to stay outside playing and the garden was getting water by the sprinkler.

Until about 10 minutes later. Then I heard thunder and in a matter of minutes, we got even more storm clouds. The temperature dropped FAST. We turned of the sprinkler and ran inside just in time. The skies opened up and poured. Finally rain. Then came the hail. And more hail. And even more hail. Needless to say we could have done without the hail. Many of our neighbors are already having their roofs replaced from our last 2 hailstorms. So far we haven't needed to do so.


 While I do LOVE where we live, I could do without our typical Midwestern storms.

Friday, August 19, 2011

Our Family Garden

This year our garden got planted REALLY late. We had non stop rain for what seemed like FOREVER!! Finally when it was time to plant, we had troubles finding plants to purchase and it was too late to start from seeds. My mom was able to purchase 2 nice sized tomato plants from our Farmer's Market downtown. My dad was able to find several tomato plants down where he lives. Daddy was finally able to plant!! Jelly Belly and Lifesaver helped. They planted corn and pumpkin seeds. While Daddy was planting, he noticed several volunteer plants from last year. He transplanted those and we have tons of tomato plants!!! YAY for tomatoes :)

Our garden has grown like crazy surprisingly after such a late start and then a long drought. Daddy even took a week long trip to New York and Mommy didn't kill the garden while he was gone. You see, I do NOT have any sort of green thumb. I am the type to kill a cactus. Finally, we are now getting natural good for the garden RAINWATER!!! We have lots and lots and lots of green tomatoes if you like those sorts of things. We personally do not. We just cannot wait to have red tomatoes!!!

The corn stalks are actually beautiful as far as corn goes. I mean I have never really thought of corn as being beautiful myself. Corn is corn, right? Wrong. Once I saw the corn stalks my children grew, I saw the beauty in corn. Ok, maybe not so much in the corn, but the idea my children grew something and the beauty of their faces when they see their fruits of labor.

As of this post, we have at least 6 good sized pumpkins growing. They are overtaking the yard by the garden bed. The kids are excited knowing they are growing their own pumpkins for Halloween this year. I mean it is pretty cool to have your own pumpkin patch in your own backyard. 

The only item I haven't mentioned are our watermelon. We have only 2 so far. Why do I say so far? Well this is because we cannot really see how many watermelon there really are. You see, our watermelon have grown into our backyard pumpkin patch!! Never the less, the kids are thrilled seeing their work. And we are one proud garden growing family!!!

Friday, August 5, 2011

Summer fun part 4

Almost on a daily basis, the kids have asked to do some sort of painting. Finally to their surprise, Daddy said "let's paint". After I picked myself up off the floor, I got the paint supplies ready!!! You see, Daddy normally does not like to do such messy things with the kids indoors. Considering it was 96 degrees outside, he really didn't have a choice but to stay inside!! I found it pretty funny how much newspaper Daddy put all over the place so the kids wouldn't get the table messy!!

Daddy was so worried they would get paint all over their clothes. As you can see, he opted to not use their paint smocks. In fact, he didn't realize we had any. I really need to get Daddy more involved in our home schooling!!!

The kids enjoyed spending an hour painting away. Much to my surprise, Daddy cleaned up the entire "mess". All he had to do was roll up the toss away paint containers within the newspaper. You see, Daddy told me this is the reason he placed so many newspapers all around the kids... just to make clean up easier!!! Maybe, just maybe, Daddy can handle the "messier" areas in our school days :)

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Summer fun part 3

The temperatures this summer have left so much to be desired. Grammie and I took the kids out for a car ride just to get out of the house. Thank goodness the air conditioner on Grammie's van works well!!! Here is why:

 I am not a fan of summer. I do not like hot weather. I do not like humidity. In fact, I loathe hot weather and humidity. I love Fall weather. I love Winter weather. I love Spring weather.  However it seems Spring weather is a thing of the past!! We go straight from Winter to full blown Summer.

So on sweltering days, we entertain ourselves indoors in the comfort of air conditioning. We have spent many days upstairs in our house. For some reason, our upstairs is much cooler. The kids LOVE dressing up. I got to witness a fashion show.

Jelly Belly was first. He wore his costume a good part of the afternoon. He didn't seem to mind getting hot while wearing it as he was too occupied being a super hero!!!

Then there is Life Saver. She rarely can leave any of her dress up clothes on more than 5 minutes. However, with the outfit she is modeling, she wears it daily. In fact, when Dancing With the Stars is on and she hears the music, she runs to put on this outfit!!! She twirls and twirls and twirls in it. I may be a bit biased, but I think she looks pretty in it!!! It does make me a bit teary eyed from time to time as I imagine her grown up wearing an outfit pretty similar.

This is how we spend our days of summer indoors!!! Of course this is also how we spend our days of winter indoors as well!! The kids LOVE LOVE LOVE their dress up clothes.

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Summer fun part 2

Lunches seem to be a huge deal around here. I can rarely get the kids to eat anything. I stumbled across a website where a lady made spaghetti noodles with hot dog bites. She called them something like sketti dogs. Of course I had to make them. So simple. I figured since the kids love sketti and hotdogs, this would be an all around winning lunch. Wrong!!! Jelly Belly wouldn't try it for anything. Not even one tiny little taste. I even ate one in front of him. Surprisingly they were pretty tasty. Life Saver tried them and loved them once she stopped giggling about how they looked!!!

First step is to take spaghetti noodles (I used thin) and break several in  half. Take a hot dog and cut into 4 or 5 pieces. Thread the noodle through the hotdog!!

Next place them into boiling water until the sketti noodles are al dente.

These pictures show

our final product.