Monday, November 30, 2009

Happy Birthday a few days late

Dear Emily,

It is just your luck that you are not only the third child, but your birthday happens to be around two of the biggest holidays of the year. I am terribly sorry in advance for the lack of birthday preparations you will probably experience.



Friday, November 27, 2009

The fun just keeps on comin'

Today was such a fun day, starting out with breakfast with my parents and grandparents at Cracker Barrel. Brian and Emily stayed home because she is very sick! So it was just the seven of us. The kids were great and we had a nice meal despite the thousands of other people there. Then we came home to pick up Em and Brian and headed over to my parents' house for some more hang time. It was so relaxing and fun to drink coffee all day, knit, visit, and and play games. We left around 3:00 to head home, but decided to make it a pit stop at home to get the dog and the stroller and went over to Prophetstown State Park for a walk. It was beautiful. We went all the way to the back of the park where we never make it to and walked down to the creek and then took a more brisk walk on the paved trail. By the time we were leaving it was dusk and we drove very slowly out of the park to spot deer. They were everywhere! We even saw a decent sized buck with antlers. Tomorrow is Emily's birthday and gingerbread house making day.

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Happy Thanksgiving!

I hope everyone has a great Thanksgiving! It has been a very laid back day for us so far. Strangely Thanksgiving is one day that I miss having a tv. I really always liked watching the parades in the morning. Brian tried to make me feel better by pulling the Macy's parade up on someone's streaming webcam, but it actually isn't the same as hearing the banter of the annoying hosts talking about each float.

This is the first year we made food for the Lafayette Urban Ministry meal and took it down there this morning. Elijah was so proud to carry the food in to the church--it was raining and I didn't feel comfortable leaving the girls alone in the van--there were lots of homeless people wandering down there.

We'll head to Brian's grandma's this afternoon and then visit my family later tonight. We've been busy making pies (8 of them in all!) and green bean casserole. YUM! We're all a bit under the weather so we'll probably have a quiet weekend, but I have been looking at some natural toy websites and finding some REALLY cute things for Christmas ideas. I'm usually really bad about having good gift ideas for people when they ask me what to buy for my kids. I personally feel like they already have plenty of things and I hate to buy things just because that's what you do at Christmas. But, this year I am armed and ready with some quality options.

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Overheard on Friday night

As we were taking a tour of the Long Center and meeting the conductor of the Lafayette Symphony Orchestra:

Elijah: "Mom, why do they have a microwave down here?" (in the downstairs dressing/warm up room)


Elijah: (before I can even respond) " I bet they just sit down here and eat popcorn and smoke cigarettes."


Saturday, November 14, 2009

Last minute plans

Last night Elijah got to cash in on his birthday present from Aunt Meg and Uncle Everette: a Purdue basketball game. It's all he could talk about all week. (I haven't heard from him yet this morning to know how it went, but I'm sure he'll have lots to say.) But, since he was going out to do something special, we decided to take Mary Grace out too. We had planned to drive back out to Brian's school to see their fall play, but to be honest, I didn't really want to go--he is a big wig there and it's impossible to actually hang out with him except for the drive to and from. And, there's the drive. Mary was pretty tired yesterday and pretty, um, grouchy. I was envisioning us driving her home at 11:00 and our whole weekend being ruined because when she gets overtired she actually ends up sleeping less, not more. So. What we decided to do was just stay in town, grab a bite to eat, and then do something low key. But. As we were at Pizza Hut (Brian was thrilled about her choice, let me tell you) she remembered that her sitter was taking her granddaughter to see High School Musical on Stage at Jeff HS. We looked at each other and wondered. Could we do it? The time was 6:20. We didn't even know what time it started. But, that's the beauty of living in town, I guess. We finished our pizza buffet and headed for Jeff, all the while reminding ourselves that there probably won't be tickets, we probably won't be able to go, our after dinner plans will probably include walking at the mall. BUT.
When we got there there WERE tickets left and the show was just getting ready to start. MARY LOVED IT!!!!!!!!! And I was excited to see a student in the show who helps in my classroom this year and FORMER KINDERGARTNERS!!! Oh my, I am old. My first year of teaching was 10 years ago. I have kindergartners who are now FRESHMEN. In the show. WOW. It was definitely a good night and we couldn't have planned it better.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Spoiler Alert

Potential Christmas card pictures coming up...

My sister-in-law, Megan, took our first-- yes, our first. ever. family portraits on Sunday. She has them on her photography business website. MANY of them turned out really well (Does that sound vain or complementary to the photographer?) Anyway, we like lots of them. Except that our kids look, well, old. I know that seems to be a running them among my blog posts.

Wednesday, November 04, 2009

Well, it's done.

I guess all I can do is wait now to find out if we go to Alaska this summer or not. I've been diligently working on writing a Lilly Teacher Creativity grant for personal renewal. It will be a month long trip to Alaska, flying into Anchorage and then driving by RV to state parks. I totally am not planning on getting it......But. What if I do? It's an $8,000 grant. Just for personal renewal of teachers. They fund 120 every year. Will mine make the cut? We definitely could not self-fund an $8,000 trip. So, if it doesn't pan out we are tentatively making plans for Yellowstone this summer. Although, I can't help but think that in terms of buying a new van (which we will NEED to do if we are going to continue driving across the country every summer) it would be great to not need to use it this summer so that we can finish paying on it before we sell it. At this point with it needing a totally overhauled a/c I can't imagine us getting enough out of it to make a decent down payment on the next one...unless we don't owe very much on it.

Unfortunately I won't have any information about the grant until February. I am trying to not be anxious about it. Actually, I'm not. Yellowstone would be awesome. Heck, I'd go back and do the exact same trip we took last summer and not even be the slightest bit disappointed. But, even still it's the waiting. And the wondering.