Saturday, August 27, 2011

Grandpa Donovan's Birthday

(Grandpa and almost all the grand kids (clockwise Ava 7, Lydia 4,

Brielle 4 months, Elias 3, Nathan 5, Gordie 8)

For my dad's birthday we celebrated with tons of chocolate. That's about it. Oh, and a few steaks and baked potatoes too but really, the chocolate was the hit. Yum.

Dad and 1/2 of his grown kids (l-r Steve, Laurel, Dad, Lynnie, Leanne)

My dad is 59 years young and just bought a motorcycle this year. The beard finally gives away his age. My dad has become a huge help now that my kids are a little bigger and has watched my kids (overnight!) a time or two, not to mention numerous little trips. Elias keeps telling me that the "Grandpa with the noter- cycle is coming over" whenever I mention a grandpa.

Leanne and Grandpa and Baby Brielle


Thursday, August 25, 2011

First Day of School

As I sat sad at the hospital thinking about Nathan and Ava starting school, John was snapping these pictures. They sure don't look too sad. Lias missed them a little but mainly just had fun making Grandpa a birthday cake with Auntie Leanne and Bay-ve Bee-elle(Baby Brielle). Nathan must have learned a lot cause tonight he read me half of "Green Eggs and Ham" pretty much all by himself. Both claimed they had great days and are excited to go back tomorrow.


Wednesday, August 24, 2011


Really, could you ask for a better place to raise kids? Tomorrow is a big day. We'll have more kids at school than at home and that just feels weird and a little wrong. Natey is excited but pretty nervous and I'll admit, I choked up tonight when we were putting him to bed. It doesn't help that tomorrow I have to be to my clinical at 8am and it's an hour away, which leaves someone else to take my baby to his first day of kindergarten. Not cool.

Luckily, he's got the next best option (or maybe the best option to him). Dada will escort both kids to their first day, drop them off, kiss them goodbye and have to do the leaving. Something tells me he's not gonna cry since he already told me he thinks they should just take the bus.

But I'll be there to get them off and can't wait to see if they're excited. Both have great teachers and are totally comfortable with the school. Their classrooms are literally 10 feet across the hall from each other, which sets my mind at ease for some reason. And 2 days a week I get off school at just the same time they eat lunch so I'm pretty sure I'll be a regular there. But still.... 2 in school?

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Shake It Baby

When I was a kid, my family lived in Japan for about 4 years. I was relatively little, 3-7, but we have tons of home videos and it's talked about so much that I really have some cool memories of the place. Some of my most vivid memories involve preparing for earthquakes and I can still remember crawling under the table in our kitchen with our whole family and our dad telling us in a serious voice, "This is where we all should meet if you ever feel an earthquake." So you can imagine my horror when, as a 6 year old, I found myself stark naked, standing in the shower watching the entire bathroom sway. I screamed my head off and everyone thought I was hurt but really I was terrified that I wasn't under the kitchen table.

So fast forward 24 years to this afternoon and I'm peacefully doing my homework on my niece's bed in my older sister's house in middle of suburban Virginia. I start to feel the bed shake and immediately I think my kids are somehow shaking it - you know the feeling when a kid climbs into bed with you in the middle of the night and it's dark and you can just feel them coming up? It was that kinda feeling but my kids were all at the park with my awesome sisters. So my immediate next thought was, "There's a mass murderer under this bed in my sister's house and no one is even home to hear me scream."

After about 5 seconds I realized this was more than the bed shaking, since now the walls were going too. It felt like an earthquake but, come on, this is Virginia, not Japan, right? Wrong. After 15 seconds I was pretty sure I had felt this before, and all my childhood memories of hiding under my desk at school during earthquake drills came rushing back. I realized I should go outside so, of course, I grabbed my laptop and walked on out to talk with all the neighbors who were also wandering outside. And like any sane person, I next googled "Stephen's City earthquake" only to find nothing so thought, "Wow, that was weird" then went back to studying. Only when my sister's came home and I realized they had totally missed it did we get online to hear about the 5.8 tremor that had an epicenter about 50 miles from the farm. Crazy world, huh?

On the bright side, we didn't have any damage anywhere although Culpeper, VA, which is our main stomping ground, had quite a few buildings damaged. And on the really bright side - this canceled Nathan's first day of kindergarten which delayed my sadness at letting my little man go off to school and let me blog about this instead. Hopefully these aftershocks will keep down (we haven't felt a single on of the supposed 4) and we'll all sleep well tonight.

Thursday, August 18, 2011

T-Rex on the Brain

Tonight as I was wedged between Nathan and Lias, trying to get them to sleep, Lias and I had this conversation.
"Mama?" in a teeny tiny whisper that I could barely hear. I ignored it three times since 5 seconds earlier I was listening to his deep breathing and lip smacking, usually sure signs that he's close to crashing. Finally I gave in so Nathan didn't get hear and get all riled up.
"What?" I replied in a tiny whisper.
"Do's T-Rexs have 'ands (hands) to open dowrs(doors)?"
"No Lias, all the T-Rexs are dead and their hands don't work to open doors."
"Ok", then deep breathing and he's out.

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

9 Years

Life is Grand.

Especially after all this time…

We've decided we're not big present people, so instead of getting all worked up about finding something for each other we just don't. And nobody is offended (although I might buy myself a new pair of shoes with all the dough we saved). We also aren't big "do anything" people so tonight we went hiking in the Shenandoah National Park with all the kids. We took a fancy picnic dinner of fried chicken, slushies, biscuits and string cheese and ate to our hearts content. Then we played on the rocks over the non-essistent river (big drought) and prayed that no one would split their head open. Everyone had a great time and we even spotted a bear on the way down the trail. Really, what more can you ask for in an anniversary?