Tuesday, June 28, 2011

A list

1. Last week was busy & fun! Sarah went to a sleepover, Bethany went to a sleepover, I watched a friend’s kids, we had company for dinner & games, Elise went to a birthday party, Becca played with a friend, other friends came over to play & craft…it was all great!

2. Because we were so busy with other people, we didn’t even have time to do our activities for the week from the activity jar! I couldn’t find a time when we were all home for long enough at the same time. Except for Sunday. And Sunday we JUST. RELAXED. So nice.

3. Strawberries. We’ve been eating them and freezing them. Yum.  Not the best year, but so good to have them fresh and red and juicy!

4. Swimming. On Sunday, all the girls swam. Only have a few pictures, though. There was lots of splashing, so I put my camera away!



Yesterday it was cool, but muggy, so the girls were hot from picking berries. All their suits were in the washing machine. They said, “Can we swim in our clothes?” To their great surprise, I said, “Yes!”



5. Make-up-activity-jar-event: We did finally do one of the activity jar events that we pulled for LAST week: Straw & Cottonball Races.





Really funny. And guess who was the clear winner? No, not me. Ed. Of course.

6. A little catch-up:

A few weeks back, the little girls got their ears pierced!


They were very brave and all in all, their ears are doing better than the big girls’ ears did when they had theirs done. We had lots of pus and grossness with theirs. So far, their holes have been fine…until yesterday when one of Becca’s lobes got all red and swollen. No grossness at the hole, just a red and swollen lobe. A bunch of neosporin and sterile cleaner later…it’s doing much better! They both have Hello Kitty earrings, which they will wear for a few more weeks before they can change them out.

And, for my newly painted front door, a new craft:


It’s a Pottery Barn knock-off, and I’m pretty happy with how it turned out, despite the fact that I couldn’t get a B in the size & shape I wanted anywhere between here and Marysville…but I made up for it with the 29 cent frame from the thrift store that I spray painted. I LoVe it!

7. I miss my girl!


I dropped her off at camp a whole two hours ago. I don’t get to pick her up for another 91 hours and 45 minutes. Sigh. Thankfully, I know she’s good and happy and having an amazing time already.

Friday, June 24, 2011

Beauty & The Beast, Jr.

If you’re local, you won’t want to miss a bunch of community kids(including my very talented 10 year old daughter) in their performance of “Beauty & The Beast, Jr.” It’s going to be a fabulous show, as the Summer Stock Theater (directed by Kathleen Dean, Dee Apodaca, and Teresa Lenssen) ALWAYS is!

Performances will be Friday, July 1 and Saturday, July 2 at 7:30 p.m. at the Lynden Christian High School Auditorium. Ticket prices are as follows:

Seniors & kids ages 6-10: $5

Adults and kids ages 10+: $8

Kids 5 & under: FREE!

Tickets are available at the door, so make plans now to attend this very fun & family-friendly live show!!

Thursday, June 23, 2011

June 23

June 23 is forever embedded in my brain as Mom Freeman’s birthday. Birthdays don’t matter to her anymore in heaven, but it’s a good time for us to remember her.


I remember she taught me how to chop onions in just the right way for her chicken enchilada recipe. I think she would have loved the Vidalia Onion Chopper I have now, though! I remember she taught me how to crochet in the backseat of a rental car on the way from Washington to Montana for a wedding. I remember being terrified of playing the wrong card if she was my partner in a card game! Thankfully, she never held it against me and she often praised “how far I’d come” in card-playing. LOL! I remember that until she got sick she came for almost every one of the girls’ birthdays and always had a special gift of some sort – something she had made generally. We treasure those. She was always up for any adventure and she loved her family. She loved her Jesus even more and was never afraid to express that faith is the most important thing. Her deepest desire was for every one of her family members to know Jesus as their Lord and Savior, so that we can all live together forever with Him. And now that I’m a mom of growing-up daughters, and an aunt to growing-up nieces & nephews, I understand that desire even more fully and my prayer is the same as hers.

It goes without saying that we miss her. I think I’ll go see if I have an onion…I feel like making some chicken enchiladas for dinner.

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Father’s Day 2011

We had a nice Father’s Day, despite the cool & windy weather. I made breakfast (unusual for a Sunday – Ed is generally in charge), went to church, handed out “Donuts for Dad’s”, had a great time at lunch at my mom & dad’s, watched the Mariner’s win, went for a walk, and just generally had a relaxing Sunday.


My girls and my guy. You know what struck me about this picture? Bethany. She looks so grown up. The orthodontic work that she is in the middle of is changing the shape of her face, and she’s just getting to look like such a middle-schooler.


My girls and my other guy. We gave him a Calvin College Alumni Choir CD and made a fun card from ALL the grandkids on tinyprints.com. Everyone loves Grandpa!


Me & my other guy. Love you, Dad!

Monday, June 20, 2011


Activity Jar #2: The activity that was pulled from the jar was “picnic.” We planned a picnic at a new park up in Canuck-land. Unfortunately, the weather on Saturday was crummy. Everyone agreed to our revised picnic plans…board games, Wii games, an indoor picnic, and a movie…all together.

No pictures, just a list to describe the event…

1. I beat Sarah & Bethany at Rummikub!

2. Ed & Elise were crushed by Becca in Monopoly, Jr.

3. Somehow or another Becca beat me in Slicing on Wii Sports Resort.

4. Despite bowling an astronomical number of splits, I can still score pretty well in Wii bowling.

5. Paninis with sourdough bread, ham, tomato, smoked gouda, and cheddar are my new favorite sandwich. Only Panera Bread can compete.

6. Chips, fruit, paper plates, eating on the floor, and COKE apparently make for a pretty amazing indoor picnic.

7. “Ramona & Beezus” is a really, really cute movie. And I’ll admit it. I teared up a bit. More than once. And Aunt Bea has the cutest haircut ever. I’m totally getting it.

8. After the movie, I had to find “Eternal Flame” on You Tube. (If you’ve seen the movie, you know why.) Any other 80’s music fans out there? Total big bang flashbacks happening now…

9. As a family, we totally felt the love.

And we are now 2 for 2 in Activity Jar success!

Sunday, June 19, 2011


It’s summer vacation. I love having extra time with my girls and I love the non-scheduled days.

But I miss my friends.

My regular Tuesday walks and thrift store shopping, Wednesday Bible Study, Friday Accountability Group, GEMS…all those things brought me friends. I do love the break from responsibility…but…

I miss my friends.

They are one of the many perks of being a stay-home mom.

Friday, June 17, 2011

Scavenger Hunt

Activity Jar #1: Sarah & Bethany create a scavenger hunt for the family. Scheduled for: Wednesday, June 15, after dinner.

Item 1: A purple house. Check!


Item 2: A heart-shaped rock from near the river. Check!


Item 3: A house with Christmas lights. Check!


Item 4: A good climbing tree (this, of course, brought us to G&G’s house because, while not “good” climbing trees by my definition, we weren’t about to let them walk onto any stranger’s property to climb a tree!) Check!




Sorry for the blurry photo…I could hardly see the girl…

Item 5: “Bender Circle” that Sarah runs in track. Check!

We had to guess the route and then we took pictures at Bender.



Sarah pretending to run the “Bender Circle”.

Item 6: A tree house. Check!


Item 7: Someplace where everyone in our family can eat ice cream for less than $12.


$10.67 to be exact! Check check check check check & check!

And yes, I quite agree, Edaleen Dairy. Everything is in fact better with ice cream.

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Last day of school!

Last week brought us through the end of this school year! We were so excited to be done. A break from the routine/schedule/homework/craziness was desperately needed. We are always ready to go back in the fall, but the “lazy daze” of summer are bliss.

I love pictures of the girls with their teachers on the last day so much more than the pictures on the first day. On the first day there’s no relationship. The child is nervous; the teacher doesn’t know the moms or the class or who will get along with whom and who will make her pull her hair out. The pictures look…stiff…cautious…apprehensive. Which is good – I still want to have those pictures because they document the feelings of that particular day. But last day of school pictures? The love and comfortable-ness between teacher and student is evident. Priceless. Special.


This teacher we have adored since day one. Becca came home telling Bible stories as though she had walked in the steps of the Israelites. And that’s because her teacher did just that and LOVES the stories of the Bible like no one else.


This teacher we weren’t sure about – we didn’t really know what she would be like. Becca loved her. Thought she was so funny. And she reserved special books just for Becca, which we ALL appreciated.


These teachers. Oh, these teachers! They are the reason we survived 5th grade. Their keen observations and sensitivities to all the things that happen to a 5th grader made me so grateful for them every day. They push without pressure. They influence gently. They teach from the heart. And while I’m thankful it will be 3 more full years before I have another 5th grader (because 5th grade is A LOT of work), we will miss them.

And of course there are no pictures of Sarah with her teachers, because of course she is too old for that sort of thing. I did however, mention to her that I used to babysit one of her teachers and she found that quite humorous & embarrassing. She was glad to know that he was about 6 at the time so I never changed his diapers.



And we can’t forget Elise’s last day of preschool. Such a momentous occasion! This is her with her teacher, looking at the memory book we made together. I just still can’t get over the fact that I have all school kids. We are officially in a new phase.

One of the things I DON’T like about the last day of school is all the junk that comes home. Now if you talk to my mother, she will say that the bags I brought home from school on the last day were BY FAR worse than any others because I brought home empty straw wrappers. Yes. I did. I do not know why. I was 7. Apparently the garbage can was too far away from my desk. But now there are rumors at school that the teachers let the kids go through their piles of stuff and take home whatever they want so that the teachers don’t have to throw it away. And I believe that must be true. Much of what those girls brought home should have just been thrown away.

BUT, in elementary school all the kids bring home this huge art folder filled with select creations from the entire year! It’s great fun to pull out piece after piece of artwork and admire it. But then what? We can’t possibly save all that stuff. Usually I save a few favorites and the rest get recycled in one way or another. But this year I saw an idea on someone’s blog and I decided to copy her. I am not ashamed to scrap-lift, craft-lift, or photo-lift.


It was apparently too bright out, so she had to get sunglasses on, but these are the creations from the art folder. And now I have one fun picture to keep and lots has been recycled!

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Celebrating Elise, Part 2 & 3

This past Sunday we had Grandma & Grandpa & Great Grandma over for Sunday lunch and to celebrate Elise’s birthday. Unfortunately, I didn’t take too many pictures…


She chose brownies & ice cream as her birthday dessert! Yummy!


And then on Tuesday we had Elise’s church & school friends over for a party! We had a GREAT time!


Good thing I had some big sisters there to help with the headband craft. The glue didn’t work so well…


Elise got some fun presents, though she needs some more tact when it comes to opening gifts. I should add that lesson to our summer school work schedule, I guess.


Elise was rather disappointed that she didn’t get her bee anywhere near the flower. Thankfully she wasn’t the only one.


These pictures turned out so cute! We’ll send each girl their own in the thank you cards, along with one of these:


Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Celebrating Elise, part 1

We make a pretty big deal out of turning 5 in our family. It only happens once, you know, and it makes you a school kid. There have been many celebrations for Elise’s 5th, which are now finally complete! Here’s what happened on the ACTUAL day:


We made “Frozen Hot Chocolate” as an after-school treat. It is what it sounds like…a hot chocolate mixture, chilled, then blended with evaporated milk and ice. So. Rich. Amazingly, I don’t actually recommend it. It was a treat, but we could each drink only about 1/4 cup!


Another drink! This time, water. We went to Billy McHale’s for her birthday dinner!

Most of the following pictures tell the story on their own…







And now time for special family presents:


The much-anticipated American Girl Doll named, appropriately, “Julie”.



Sunday, June 12, 2011

Painted Ball Jar and other craftiness

I finally took the pictures off my camera for the first time in a week. I have many birthday pictures to sort through & edit and they will be forthcoming. In the meantime…

I made this:


Very fun. Red spray paint. Glass Ball Jar from my collection. Now I need white daisies, don’t you think?

I’m loving spray paint at the moment.


50 cent garage sale purchase. It was white & brown. It’s now pretty in black and has a new home on my old desk with some other lovely things.


That’s my old magnetic menu board. It had flowery paper over the middle and had a bright blue frame. Then for a while it was a shopping board. Now I mod-podged old dictionary paper over the blue frame, sprayed the other side of the magnetic board with chalk paint and it’s part of the new “command center” in the kitchen. It’s a magnetic chalk board! Love it! I’ve got cute magnetic wooden clothespins on it, holding fun stuff, and we can use chalk to write down stuff to buy at the store, etc.


Some scrapping craftiness: an end-of-the-year book for Elise’s favorite preschool teacher! We did one when Becca ended her time at my mom’s preschool and Elise has been asking when we’ll do hers for about a year now. It has pictures and captions from Elise of all their memories over the last 2 years of preschool.


Treats for Elise’s party guests on Tuesday afternoon. A pack of pencils from the Dollar Store + $1 clipboards from JoAnn’s + some cut white paper that I stamped flowers on + ribbon I had on hand = $1.20/guest!


Flower drinking straws! Green straws + pretty paper cut into flowers using my Silhouette + hole punch = Drinking fun at the party!


And THIS is genius. Elise wanted to play “Pin the Tail on the Donkey.” Since it’s a flower party, we asked if it could be “Pin the Petal on the Flower” or something like that. She said yes. So, Sarah drew a flower and said, “We should have bees or butterflies and then the kids have to put the bee in the center of the flower – you know, for pollenation!” I said, “Great!” She drew the flower on poster paper and Bethany assembled cute bees that we cut using the Silhouette. And NOW comes the GENIUS part: Sarah says, “Afterwards, you can cut out the middle and the girls can hold it and stick their face in the flower and you can take their picture!” I love it! That girl is SO my daughter. Smile I can’t wait for this party!!

I also cut out LARGE flowers out of paper for another party game and we’re going to yet create some large tissue paper flowers for decoration, thanks to inspiration from my sweet Canadian friend. Pictures to come.

And speaking of pictures…these were taken with my iPhone…so no judging my photography skills now, okay?