Sunday, September 11, 2016

Sorry. This One's Mostly About My Kids. The Grandparents Might Enjoy It. TToT Time!

And with the close of today, another birthday season is behind us. In less than three weeks, three of our boys have birthdays. Cuckoo turned 7, Phoenix turned 18, and today Giant turned 14. We've eaten so much cake. So much ice cream. They've blown out so many imaginary candles (because not once did I remember to buy them). They've opened gifts and had friends over and had a day off of doing chores. All a birthday should be at our house.

I am thankful for the good health of my children, that they made it to these ages and these milestones, and they've done it so marvelously.

(That's three!)

4. Star and many of his classmates were Confirmed this week. (For you non-Catholics, Confirmation is the third and final Sacrament of Initiation into the Catholic Church. The first two Sacraments are made when they are young, with their parents and Godparents making the promises. Confirmation is the one the teens themselves choose to do, to make the promises and proclaim their beliefs, after a year of lessons and prayer and discussion. It's a super big deal.) It was a teary affair, for sure.

5. Even though we have 5 kids playing sports, it is the easiest sports schedule we've had since our oldest started playing. Three kids on the same team is a large part of that. :) Our weekends actually have free time for us to hang out and do yard work!

6. The high school soccer teams are playing well. They won their games on Saturday pretty handily. Now, if only we could get ONE Saturday game that doesn't include pouring down rain. They've had three Saturday games, and all three have had storms and/or torrential downpours. (In order to turn this into a least the rain wasn't a cold rain. It's been plenty warm.)

7. Cuckoo is having a great time playing his first ever season on a real team. In his soccer game this weekend, he scored twice, then made some awesome blocks when playing goalkeeper. He has decided he wants to be a keeper, thus ensuring I will die from a heart attack. My heart can barely take it with Star being a keeper. It will be way worse in 8 years when Cuckoo is in high school. (Thankfully, though, Cuckoo changes his mind faster than he changes socks, so there is still a chance I won't have to suffer through watching another of my boys flinging himself in front of a charging player intent on kicking the ball my baby is trying to catch.)

8. Turken had his first football game this weekend. Seeing as how in a list of kids on his team, smallest to biggest, he is the penultimate, the coaches weren't expecting a lot out of him in the way of blocking or tackling. Little did they know, he has been trying to take out three teenagers his entire life. While the force he can produce won't budge a 15 year old, it will stop a third grader in his tracks. In this one game, he single-handedly tackled 5 boys, all behind the line of scrimmage.

9. This is the first time in 8 years that Buttercup isn't playing soccer. She was expecting to miss it, especially when the games started. Thankfully, she isn't missing it one itty bitty bit. She's getting to do all the things she couldn't do when she was practicing every day of the week. She is a tutor for and organization called School on Wheels, which provides help for kids who are homeless. She is on the speech team, and she is a co-leader of the Mock Trial group. She is also teaching ERE (Sunday school) to 2nd and 3rd graders at our parish. It's amazing how much time a person has when she's not playing a high school sport! :)

10. Ok, enough bragging about my kids. When did this blog turn into a brag sheet? I'll talk about someone else's kid for this one. (I love the kids my kids have befriended.) Star and Giant had some friends over, and they were playing a version of flashlight tag in the yard where, in order to tag someone, the person who is "It" had to throw a ball and hit someone else with it. (Mind you, it was pitch-black dark outside when they were playing, and these friends aren't exactly familiar with the terrain.) There was a chase, and the kid being chased slipped and fell on the wet grass. The boy who was It ran up to him and asked, "Are you hurt?" It was only after the boy lying on the grass muttered "no" that he threw the ball and tagged him. Such thoughtful boys. ;)

Wow! I did it! For the first time in weeks I got a thankful post done!

Tell me. What happy things have happened in your life while I've been gone?

Have a lovely day!

Ten Things of Thankful

 Your hosts

Wednesday, September 7, 2016

A Little Random Catch Up

My dad is on vacation, so I have a bit of reprieve from his "You haven't blogged" texts, but I'm going to get the jump on it and give a quick update to the goings on around here.

For the first time in 22 years of marriage, Bryan took a day off of work to simply be at home. After that one day, we've come to the conclusion that we'll ease into retirement. That conclusion was easily reached when, three hours into the day, as I was cleaning bathrooms, he showed up in every one as I was cleaning it. While scrubbing the sink in the final bathroom, sensing his presence, I turned to look at him, and he exclaimed, "I'm not following you! I'm putting this away!" Perhaps we'll approach retirement in half-lifes. He'll take another day off in, say...11 years. Then one more in 5 1/2 years.

For the last four weeks, I've been listening to Cuckoo ask, "When are we going to have my birthday party?" I finally scheduled it for last Friday, when the elementary school had a weird extra day off. Let's talk about the difference in parties for the big kids when they were young versus parties for the little kids now.

Big kids...Cute, handmade invites for a themed party, full of planned activities. Phoenix had a bike parade party, where each guest brought his bike. I supplied items for them to decorate their bikes, as well as horns and personalized license plates. Star had a Nemo party, where we had a fun obstacle course of all the things Nemo's dad and Dory had to go through to find Nemo. Buttercup had a princess party, where the kids AND THE MOMS dressed up.

Cuckoo...No theme. No planned activities. Just 5 kids here to play.

Big kids cakes... I once made individual cakes in the shapes of the faces of Elmo and Cookie Monster. I didn't know which cakes each kid would want, so I made one of each for each and every person. It took me hours and hours to make them.

Cuckoo's cake... I spent five minutes putting green icing on a 9x13 cake, then sticking some cars, a fuseball, and paper goals onto it to give the impression of the video game Rocket League. We had no candles, so we sang and he pretended to blow candles out.

And you know what? The kids and Cuckoo had just as much fun as the big kids did at their fancy parties.

I bought myself a chainsaw. I'm officially the coolest person you know.

Between the trimming of the driveway trees Star has been doing all summer and the fun I've been having whacking of tree limbs left and right with my chain saw, we've made one gigantic burn pile. It was right next to the even more gigantic burn pile that's built up over the last 5 years. Over the long weekend, we began attacking it. We had a fire going for two days straight. Not only did we get all the recent trimmings burned, we burned so much old stuff we found and burned three Christmas trees from holidays past.

It was quite the walk down memory lane.

And yesterday, the poison ivy started popping up on my legs and arms.

Because for the life of me, I cannot figure out what that crap looks like.

And lastly, I'm starting to panic about this year's Christmas card. It's September, and I don't have a clue what to write about this year. It's been a pretty boring 2016. (for our family. It's all relative.) For 12 years people have been looking forward to our Christmas cards. There may big one big disappointing nothing from us this year.

So, I'm off to do more things. That's what I do these days. So many things.

I haven't read a single blog post in over a week. I haven't checked Instagram for about 2 weeks. I haven't even been on Facebook for more than a cursory look once or twice a day. We're in a phase of SO MUCH TO DO!! I miss you all, but this is how it is for now.

Have a lovely day!