Saturday, May 31, 2014

April Little Things

I figured I should get to my April "little things" update by the end of May. Ha!

The crew on Opening Day - all decked out in their Yankees attire. Finley's Jeter shirt has gotten the most wear - it's been worn by all four kids!

Since Hudson switched to the toddler bed, his sleep patterns have been hit or miss.  If he takes a nap (which I really try to avoid), bedtime is almost impossible.  And Wyatt wakes up EARLY, so he doesn't always take Hudson's "Hey!  Look at me! Don't go to sleep!" antics too kindly.  But some nights (especially the ones where he's been awake all day), end really peacefully.  It helps when his big brother reads to him in bed!
My mom was watching Mason for the weekend and got Hudson so they could spend the day together.  It ended with me picking Hudson up to Mason's cries of, "No!  Hudson!  Don't take him, he's my best buddy!"
In the middle of the crazy spring program week for Reese and Hudson, I also went to Wyatt's class Easter egg hunt.  It was a fun afternoon watching this group collect their eggs.  They each have a number assigned to them throughout the year, so they just searched for eggs with their number - Wyatt is 4.  What I found funniest was that they know each other's numbers - if I saw a 12 I would shout "I found 12!" and then one of the other kids would shout "Mackenzie!  You have an egg over here!"  He was also quite proud because he earned a touchdown in class for great behavior that day  - before 9AM!  He was on a hot streak that week and got 4 touchdowns!
Reese spent April hard at work making all of us bunny ears.  Here she is modeling hers.
Finley also got to play dress up for the first time.
This year has been a bit crazy for me.  My days are structured, but they're organized into really weird, no downtime-ish kind of ways.  Basically, I always feel like something is next.  It's hard to start and finish anything because I feel like I'm never home long enough between drop offs and pick ups to get anything done (especially laundry).  This girl and I have spent many Monday and Tuesday afternoons hanging out in the front seat of the van.  Her pick up from dance and art is 1:45, and Wyatt gets out of school at 2:30 - and the little kids almost always fall asleep on the way to get her!  So we'd hang out and read her reader or watch a show on Netflix or just talk.  Here she was trying to prove that she's ready to ride up front.  Not so much little one.
The kids have dry erase boards in the car.  Wyatt was giving me an update about what Finley was doing since she's rear facing and he has a better view :)!
One thing that has been really fun this year are outings with these two.  I can't believe he'll be gone three days a week next year!  Getting errands taken care of was a lot easier with just my Smalls - things I never imagined I would say when getting out of the house with Wyatt and Reese - it seemed like such a chore then!
Ever since this guy got his new bat (it's name is "Attack"), he has been on a mission.  He's trying to get in LOTS of swings.  It cracks me up how intense gets about stuff.  He was very upset when I couldn't get the net up one day - and then went to hit in the rain another day! Ignore the back yard meadow.  It rained every time Brian was on his way out the door to mow it!
And of course, rainy days call for Wyatt teaching Hudson his letter sounds and Reese playing blocks with Finley.  And pajamas.  Because who wants to get dressed when it's raining outside?

Hopefully the May update gets done a bit earlier next month!

Monday, May 26, 2014

Our Weekend

Summer is (kind of) upon us.

The three big kids still have three more weeks of school, so we aren't in complete celebration mode, but I did decide to make Brian's first weekend FULL of work a little fun for them. 

We started Friday with the pool set up after school, home made pizza, and a movie night.  The pizza and movie (and popcorn with M&Ms) are both part of our usual Friday night "tradition", but the pool made things a little more fun!  Pizza night has also gotten tastier since we started making our own.  The kids love cheese, and I have really fallen in love with this honey garlic pizza.

Love my Talls!

And that one there in the middle?  His smile is adorable.  Which distracts you from the fact that he rarely naps and likes to sneak food out of the pantry.  And he also enjoys randomly changing clothes throughout the day.

I caught this one of them running and jumping in with my phone.  So awesome!  I couldn't believe that they didn't complain once about it being too cold!

They had so much fun on Friday that I set the pool back up on Saturday afternoon.  On a Target trip that morning I was looking at suits for Reese and she insisted on this one because, "it looks like art, Mama."  Not my favorite, but it's the little things that make her happy!  I can live with a swimsuit I don't love if it's a one piece.  Ha!
Just so you know, Finley was also with us this weekend - she was just napping during our pool time.  She did enjoy a popsicle with us after her nap!
On Sunday we had "real pool" time at my Mom and Dad's house.  Obviously Hudson and Finley get distracted by Cheetos.  Because who doesn't?
I mean, she definitely does.  
In other exciting news, Wyatt lost another loose tooth this weekend.  Of course, losing teeth can't just be boring with this kid - he lost it in the pool at my Mom's house.  And quickly discovered how profitable it is to lose teeth while he's there.  Now his top two middle teeth are waiting to be surrounded!

Now I'm just off to get everyone ready for school tomorrow.  There's an end to packing backpacks and lunches and signing paperwork in sight.  It just means that all four of them are home alone with me all day.  Time to start pinning stuff to keep them busy!  Ha!

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

A Big Duck and the Zoo

The Chrysler Museum recently reopened after a remodel, and part of the reopening was an art festival and a huge duck.  Because art.

When I glanced at my phone over the weekend, it seemed like everyone was going to see the duck, but there was no way for us to make it out there.  I decided to take all of the kids after school yesterday.

Wyatt was hesitant to get excited about the duck, "What is the big deal with a big duck?  How tall is this going to be anyway?"  When I told him it was taller than his school, he was on board to see it.  The thing is HUGE.

Brian's grandmother lived in an apartment complex nearby.  I told Brian I couldn't even imagine what she would have said about seeing the thing in the river!

Wyatt arranged this photo of the three of them - smallest to biggest.  Finley was untrusting of the massive duck and didn't want to face me for the picture.  She preferred to keep it in her line of vision at all times.

I tried to take a picture.  She scowled.  

Reese had her final art class of the year yesterday.  It was kind of fitting that we visited the museum on the day of her last class.  I wasn't planning on taking the kids in (because hello!  four crazy kids in an art museum!), but she begged and the boys obliged.  And there were already millions of children there to see the duck. She was so excited to "see art!"

This is a blurry picture, but I don't want to forget that this boy walked in and immediately asked if we could leave - true story.  BUT!  Once we got to the room with the samurai armor he was hooked.  Then we saw the Egyptian display and he would just walk up and start reading what everything was.  He actually started talking to me about a sarcophagus and the mummification process and hieroglyphics (there was a helpful video that explained things to him). 

Of course this was all next to the marble statues.  I saw them and immediately took a mental inventory of my children to estimate which one would be the first to say something about the large marble statue of a naked man.  Wyatt walked by.  Hudson walked by.  I pushed Finley by (she wasn't a suspect anyway).  Reese stopped, looked up, and shouted, "Hey Wyatt!  You can see it's penitz!" (Because that's how my children say it.)  Real mature, Reese. Real mature.  

Too bad Daddy wasn't there.  I'm sure he would have added some equally mature commentary.

Since we were already out in Norfolk, I decided to squeeze a zoo trip in.  

I should preface this by saying that all of this is very out of character for me: to surprise them after school with a trip, to go an art museum, etc.  With our crazy schedules (and Brian's busy season at work just starting), it's typically easiest for all of us to stick to a schedule when we have other things going on during the week.  Wyatt also isn't very big on surprises. We typically head straight home after school, the Smalls take naps, the Talls do homework and play outside, and they all have dinner, baths, a show, and bed on nights when we don't have anything else happening.  On nights that we do have games, everything is the same except for the playing outside and the show.  We have dinner before we leave and baths are MUCH faster on game nights!

But I am just starting to discover that taking them places is getting easier when I'm on my own.  I think the fact that Wyatt and Reese are older and don't run off helps!  Also, I don't have a teeny tiny one to stop and feed and a toddler and two preschoolers anymore.  I have a toddler and a preschooler and two big kids.  It's a little sad that my newborn days are over, but it also means that we can do more fun things together, so I'll look on the bright side!

But I digress.
We got to the zoo about an hour before it closed.  Wyatt and Hudson insisted on seeing the snakes first, so by the time we made it to the Africa section, most of the animals were on the way in for the night.  We watched the elephants go to their rooms, and the giraffes were already having dinner!
We decided to skip the Asia section because the first 5 displays we saw were empty.  Since we left during peak traffic, I got them all dinner at Wendy's to keep the happy in the car, and we came home.  It was definitely a really fun day with these four - and I'm hoping for many more this summer!

Monday, May 19, 2014

Game Ball x2!

Reese had two games last week.  I missed one because Wyatt had a school musical, but she had a great game!  I'm glad I was able to be there on Wednesday though, because she got the Game Ball!
This wasn't her getting the ball...she just needed a hug from "Dada" during the game.  Yes. She still calls him Dada.
Obviously there was much excitement about her Game Ball.

Way to go, Pieces!
Wyatt got the game ball at his game on Saturday.

Two interesting facts about the game:
1.  He lost a tooth in a piece of taffy while he was in the on deck circle.  This caused quite the commotion.
2.  In the final inning of the game, he was catching and his buddy, Will, was pitching.  Brian and Will's Dad both tried to tell them that the bases were loaded and there was a force out at home.  They BOTH shouted back, "WE KNOW!"

And then it happened, the ball was hit right to Will and he threw it back to Wyatt for the force out.  They were so excited.  I don't have a picture of their reaction, but it was basically something like this.

They wanted their picture taken together after the play!

When I asked Wyatt how he and Will knew there was a force out at home, he said, "Mom, me and Will like to watch lots of games and highlights so we know how baseball works.  That's why screen time is a good thing sometimes."
And after Wyatt got the game ball, his best buddy Aden picked him up to celebrate.  It is so fun to watch these boys be friends.  They're starting to learn when they each need an arm over their shoulder after a strike out, or when they need to be left alone after a strike out, and when to celebrate each other's big plays.  Aden turned a double play and Wyatt jumped on him by the dugout.  So fun!
We have a tee ball game and a tournament game for Wyatt this week - he had a skating lesson last week and I'm hoping he's back on the ice soon!

Also, I may or may not be ready for some down time!

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

More Baseball

This week's schedule looks something like this:
Monday: Baseball game
Tuesday: Tee ball game and a school musical
Wednesday: Tee ball game and baseball practice
Thursday: Soccer game
Friday: School carnival?  But it will most likely be a movie night.
Saturday: Soccer at 9, tee ball at 12, baseball at 3
Sunday: Dance pictures at 3 and baseball practice at 5

So if my slice of the internet seems, I don't know, heavily sports influenced right now, it's because my life is.  Ha!
Most days involve watching this boy swing a bat.  And washing his uniform daily.
He really enjoys playing second base.  He keeps telling me he's sure he'll make a double play soon!
I think these two could pull it off!

I bought him eye black stickers because he always wants eye black, but he also always smears it all over his face.  He asked me to write "Dodgers" on there for him.  I gave it my best shot!
I can feel the school year slowly winding down, but also see the push to get all of the final lessons in.  I am excited that he will be playing All Stars (because I really want him to get as much practice as he wants, and that's not something I'm able to help with while Brian works), but I know that even with the school year over we will have so many other things going on. Swim lessons will start before we know it!  Crazy!

Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Mother's Day Weekend Canon Edition

I left the camera with Brian on Saturday while he was pulling Sports Dad duties.  Of course, his Sports Dad duties mostly include Coach Dad duties, so all he got were some soccer pictures!

Wyatt had his first soccer "tournament" on Saturday, which meant three games played at 10, 11 and 12.  Wyatt missed the game at 10 because of baseball, but he was there for the final two games.

As usual, Wyatt doesn't hesitate to get in there and get the ball.
Since I missed the games, I was happy when his coach emailed the team yesterday and included the line, "Wyatt missed the first game, but showed up to help us win the last two."  I think Brian said he scored two goals in the second game and one in the third?
The Coach of one of the other teams was super sweet to remember that it was Mother's Day weekend, and he brought roses for the kids to give their moms.  I'm sad I missed it, but I know this sweet boy was excited to give it to me.

One of our missions on Sunday was to find a good swing set.  We have been dragging our heels for what feels like forever to find one that will make everyone happy.  I just want one from Sam's Club! We drove down to the North Carolina line to look at one that Brian wants (it's a freaking castle.  For my yard.  Just, no.), and then we stopped at a nearby park with some slushes from Sonic.

I love these 4 little ones.  I am so grateful that I get to be their Mama.

I love Wyatt and Finley's expressions.  I have no idea what was going on with Mr. H. Ha!

Blurry one of this girl.  But what else can I expect when she just wanted to go as high as she could on the swings?

After our fun morning at the park we went to get our pool from Target and then All Star practice for Wyatt. Such a fun, laid back Mother's Day that I got to spend with my favorites!