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Showing posts from 2015

Happy New Year!

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We celebrated New Year's Eve by freezing our posterior's off at the Oregon Zoo with the Shaws! We got to see the new elephant habitat, ate dinner on-site, then walked around to enjoy the Zoolights. Yours truly forgot the entire backpack full of cold-weather necessities, such as hats, scarves and, most importantly, gloves. It was sitting right next to the door when we got back home. I believe last year we went to the zoo for New Year's Day and I felt so proud of myself for bringing gloves and scarves for everyone. *sigh* Still, those who were warm (mostly the men-folk) had a great time, and those that were cold survived. I let Judah take pictures with my phone and some of these are his. 








After the zoo we went home to our house and watched the new Mission Impossible movie with our friends and toasted the new year with some bubbly. So fun!

Merry Christmas!

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Christmas 2015 Dear Friends and Family, We hope this holiday season finds you well and happy and rejoicing in the birth of our Savior! If you’ve wondered what we were up to lately, you are in luck! I have your answer right here! January - The month started off with an overnight for Michael and Elly in Salem after a family wedding, kicked into high gear with the kids back to school after the holidays and saw the beginning of "The Great Rearranging" of the kids’ bedrooms.
February - February should've made me shiver, but instead it was a winner. Sunshine on my doorstep, the kids were all outdoors, yep. (To the tune of American Pie)
March - The Zoo and OMSI and downtown Portland. Monica saw Cinderella with a fun aunt and got to go on a field trip to the Portland aquarium. Friends from Richland visited.
April - Judah(11) to San Francisco with Michael's parents, Elly to her parents' with other kids during spring break. Tax season over and celebratory trip to Seaside and Ast…

Special Announcement!

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Guess We'd Better Register Their Hands...

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Acquire Christmas Tree - Check!

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Fun with Siblings

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Scones!

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Since the the big kids we're having Thanksgiving parties at school today, I thought that Phinehas and Elena and I should do something special! So we did some baking after Circle Time. Elena played with playdoh while Phinehas and I made scones... Only when the second batch was nearly ready to go in the oven did I realize that we had cut up the butter, but never added it in to the dough! Whoops! Still, there was enough sugar and raisins and whipping cream in the dough, to be very edible. And it filled Phinehas' "love tank" right up!

Look! We are actually doing a craft!

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Making autumn leave wreaths!

Cousins!

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Last Friday I babysat my 4 nephews in the morning while their mom was teaching at my older kids' school. With my two little kids that made for 6 children, 5 and under! As you can see, fun was had! Dress-up, tv watching, pumpking coloring, and trampoline bouncing. 



After they left, I took a nap. I don't know how my sister-in-law does it EVERY DAY! But she does it all, and well. :-)

Judah Graduated From Speech Therapy!

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Today Judah's speech teacher threw him a little graduation party. When she asked him who he wanted to invite, he said he wanted his family to come! She was pretty charmed. It's been two years since Judah started taking speech therapy classes at a local school! He's stuck with it and corrected his faulty speech patterns. I'm proud of him! Congratulations, Judah!

One Last Hurrah - Number 1!

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This summer had so many "Last Hurrah!" events! One of the first ones was our trip to Oaks Park. Last year we painstakingly filled out the library reading checklist at our local library to participate in the summer reading program just so that we could get the $5 ride coupons to our local amusement park. Then Judah got pneumonia and on the appointed day, we couldn't go. I knew I wanted to make up for the omission this year, but did we want to do the library program? On Two For One Tuesdays, the ride bracelets are buy-one-get-one-free - so about $8 per bracelet, less for the limited ones. Was it worth it to pay an extra $3 per child to NOT have the hassle of doing the summer reading program? Yes. Yes, it was. I've enjoyed the reading program in the past, but helping 5 kids keep track of their reading logs and fill them out is surprisingly not easy. Judah was the only one who signed up this year, and he lost his log a couple months ago. The librarian thought I should h…

Swimming lessons!

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Teaching our children to swim seems to be on that Parents Responsibility list we all have rattling around at the back of our minds. People have varying definitions of success. Some do Swim Team. Some of us just want to feel confident that if their kid falls off a dock, he won't drown. I'm in the latter category, but it is amazing to me how much investment it takes just to get one's kids to that that level of competency in the water!  So, swimming lessons have become part of my expectation of what summer holds. Judah and Ezra and Monica are taking lessons this year, and their lessons are staggered, so I've been spending an hour every morning by the wading pool outside watching the kids splash and play - and occasionally scream. 



I've come to really look forward to the time sitting in the sun, taking to my friend Joanna. Possibly drinking Dutch Brothers coffee.... ;-) The weather this summer has been pretty great, too, as you can see in the pictures. Happy summer, e…

Wallowa Lake Adventure

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In July, we went to Wallowa Lake with my parents and sister. I had been expecting a hot vacation in the middle of a cool, rainy Western Oregon summer, but instead we got rained on in Wallowa Lake after a month of hot dry weather at home! But we still had a lot of fun!






Dad and Michael took the three older kids fishing. Unforunately they were out doing that during a couple of cloudbursts. Monica did catch one fish, though. Yeah. We're not really a successful fishing family.  I'm not sure Dad enjoyed cleaning the fish while everybody else ran for the van, but he suffered cheerfully. Mom, Katy, Elena and I went to Joseph while they were out in the rain and had coffee, went shopping, and ate lunch. It's a hard-knock-life, right? ;-)

Also, we drove go-karts, took a tram to the top of a mountain, had fresh enormous order-ahead-of-time donuts, went mini-golfing, and even attended a folk-music concert at a historic theatre in Enterprise. What more could you ask!

Happy Sunday!

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Oregon Raspberries

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On Thursday, the kids and I went and picked 9.5 pounds of raspberries at a local berry farm. We ate quite a few with ice cream, just plain, and with cream and sugar, but this morning Phinehas and I made jam! I know ten pounds of berries and 6 cups of jam is a laughable quantity to serious jam makers, but we didn't get around to making jam at all last year, so I guess I'm feeling pretty good about myself. We actually have a lot of berries left, and I'd like to make more, but I'm out of pectin, so I'll have to make a supply run first. Hopefully before the rest of the berries get eaten!

Summer Bubbles

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I think one of the most rewarding "crafts" I've ever done with my kids is make bubble solution for them. Then you just watch them play and the only mess you have is soap... Which cleans up with water! Hooray! I have sprung for glycerine, though - it really does make the bubbles grow larger and last longer.

Pears for the Road!

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The Big Five-Year-Old!

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Phinehas turned five this year, which he is very proud of in the way that little kids are always proud of turning a year older - as if they did it themselves, on purpose. I told the kids that we were NOT going to do a huge kids birthday party for every birthday this year. But I figured I had to do one for Phinehas' fifth birthday... and Ezra is turning 10 this year, which is a big one, too... So instead of having 3 big birthday parties as we did last year, we'll only have 2. Phew. But having birthday parties is getting easier as all of the kids get older and because we've developed a routine - corn dog lunch, play, open presents, play, cake and ice-cream, play.

Because most of Phinehas' friends have siblings who are my older kids' friends, I just invited the child and their mother and siblings. So we ended up having 28 people over! It was a little crazy, but very rewarding. My friend, Joanna, stayed afterward and helped me clean up and then we sat and visited on th…