Friday, February 24, 2006

Was that a vacation?

Okay, so I am back to post after a break from too much internet. I had to limit my internet surfing so that I could get some things done! I decided that I HAD to do some DEEP cleaning before the baby got here. I have cleaned the laundry room out, the sunroom, decluttered the kitchen (mostly), cleaned out my closet (the biggest job~I can walk INTO my walk-in closet!), and vacuumed all the corners and along the walls. Oh yeah, I cleaned out under my bed ~ do NOT ask what I found!! Of course the baby's room is now stacked with stuff that needs to be donated, stored and sold. *Sigh* I will be dedicating a day to that room so that I will be done.

I bought a new couch and that has made me feel so much better. My old couch was a hand-me-down that had been handed down WAY too many times and I found, in my current state, I could NOT get off of it once I sat down. Most people had a hard time getting up, except the kids, who loved to climb on it. Alyssa had just begun to do some pretty fancy flips onto it and for that I am glad that it was replaced. The new couch is not so "flip friendly" and that is good for mom, disappointing for her!

Doctor's appointments are getting into high gear now, at every 2 weeks. I am not looking forward to weekly trips to Tulsa, but, that just assures me that soon I will be able to turn over in my bed at night without causing a ruckus. Everything is great with me and the baby and the girls are getting pretty excited. We are trying to decide how we are all going to fit into the hospital room, since NO ONE is willing to stay anywhere else. It's going to be quite a sight!!

School has been moving slowly, but Alyssa is reading her BOB books quite fluently and reading sentences that I am writing for her on the board. Her phonics skills have improved so much this year and I am relieved. You can see that it is taking less and less effort for her to read words and sentences now. Our current read aloud is Poppy and we should be done with it this weekend. She has enjoyed the book and frankly, so have I. Each chapter we read, we want to move on to see what happens next. We participated in the Great Backyard Bird Count and it was really interesting. We have continued our birdwatching and have had a great time looking up the different birds that visit us. As a complete bird moron, I have to admit that looking at a bird in the yard and then trying to identify it in a book was extremely difficult! Once we got the hang of what types of birds were visiting and what characteristics to look for, it got easier. Honestly, a cardinal was the only thing I could readily identify in the beginning. Alyssa spent quite some time this evening looking through the bird books to identify one that she saw at the feeder today. I was happy to see that she was genuinely interested in identifying what kind of bird she saw.

Brian brought home a new puppy today and the girls were very excited. Alyssa was having a difficult time getting over Casey. I thought she was doing OK, but everytime Gwen mentioned Casey, Alyssa would get upset. And Gwen had to mention Casey everytime we left the house, everytime we drove past the spot in the Wal-mart parking lot where we got her, and any other time she just thought about mentioning what she looked like dead. It was torture to Alyssa. This puppy is an all black lab-hound mix. He is very cute! I am hoping that we can keep him from chewing everything in site, and ultimately killing himself on something in the yard/trash/field...well, you get the idea. Alyssa has appropriately named him "Black" which her father and I thought was a little weird, but when you tell a 6 year old to name her new puppy, you get what you pay for!! She insists that we NOT call it "Blackie" but simply "Black." I am hoping that before we imprint this name on the puppy she will change it to something that sounds more like a name. She does love to change her mind!

I will try and do a better job at keeping up in the coming weeks so that no one thinks I have fallen off the face of the earth, or more likely, exploded from the pressure being applied to my navel. I will also post a picture of the girls enjoying the small amount of snow we got last week. You would have thought it was a blizzard!!

Saturday, February 11, 2006

Happy Birthday to Me!

My birthday was Thursday and it was fun. That afternoon we went to the Valentine's Party for Alyssa's homeschool co-op. Alyssa was chosen to be the Valentine Queen for the day! She looked very cute in her heart cape and crown. Later that night we ate birthday cake, which Alyssa made (with the help of Granny) and it was yummy. She did a beautiful job! She had been planning that cake for a month and it took them 2 days to actually get it all done. It was 3 layers, chocolate with white icing and pink "roses" with candy letters that said "Happy Birthday Mama" and the number "35" on top. Due to the burn ban there were only 10 candles! :)

We are about done with our Ramona book and Alyssa liked The Emperor's New Clothes. We will be starting Poppy by Avi after we are done with Ramona. I am not sure what we will do after that but I think I might bring out some of the shorter classics and some mysteries. Gwen has enjoyed listening to our stories also, I find her reapeating the last word I said many times which tells me that she is listening. I have been so tired lately that reading aloud has been a good time for me to rest and still do school! Once the baby arrives there will be lots of reading aloud. ;) I am considering leaving the girls in gymnastics because I hate for them to be out for 9 weeks. The baby is due right in the middle of the session, but I think if I can get someone else to take Alyssa to class she will only miss a week or two. Gwen, on the other hand, her class is "Mommy and Me" so I'm not sure how that will work out. I'm not sure Brian would be up to the task. Although Alyssa would love to take my place, I'm not sure Gwen would listen to her. Let me point out that this class is made up of a couple one year olds, Gwen (2) and a 3 year old who is the instructor's son. This is basically controlled chaos with a little deliberate tumbling involved, but Gwen loves it and I feel like keeping her out for 9 weeks would interrupt her flow...she really is making progress in listening and actually "doing" what her teacher wants her to do! We'll see what happens!!

A similar thing will happen with Alyssa's homeschool co-op. It ends April 16 (I am due the 20th) and there will be the graduation/year-end party sometime soon after, so we might miss the last day, which should be the Medieval Feast (bummer!) and I may or may not be able to attend the year-end party. I am pretty freaky about taking the baby out before 6 weeks (or longer if I can get away with it!) so I try to stay home and get baby and mom situated. In the past Alyssa has not been too thrilled with others taking her somewhere, but with age, she has lightened up and hopefully she will attend some of these events without me. However, leaving the baby behind might cause her some stress, she is totally a "little mama." I guess if these are the only things I have to worry about, I am lucky!!

Have a great day!!

Monday, February 06, 2006


Well, we are going to participate in the Great Backyard Bird Count! It sounds fun. It's from Feb 17-20. I have requested some bird watching books from the library and going to purchase bird seed. Our Science unit for the next 2 weeks will be Birds so we can get familiar with bird watching and the types of birds in our area.

We finished Mr. Popper's Penguins and Alyssa enjoyed it. We have started Ramona the Pest by Beverly Cleary and it has L-O-N-G chapters! We just started and got through chapter 1 (41 pages!) so far. I remember reading the Ramona books when I was a child and liked them very much. Alyssa likes this one so far, she is not concerned about the long chapters because she could listen all day! I just purchased Favorite Poems: Old and New and The Random House Book of Fairy Tales which we will be starting this week. One of my old faves is The Emperor's New Clothes and Alyssa is excited to hear it.

Co-op will be starting for us this week. We did not participate in Co-op last semester and I think Alyssa is ready to go back. However, during this Co-op I will be delivering the baby so it should be interesting! This semester's theme is Kings, Queens and Knights which I think will be fun. This theme is more in tune with Alyssa's interests. She can't wait to dress up as a princess at the Medieval Faire!

I think that is our latest, we are still doing gymnstics and both girls look forward to going each week. I'll try and keep up this week!