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Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Big Boy and Baby Boy

I am saddened to say my baby boy is 10 months old as of yesterday. I am happy for him. Sad for me. Pitifully sad. But, here is something to cheer me up: My two little (big) boys can now take a tubby together!
This makes me so happy! I forgot how much I liked tub time! Since the older two have moved onto showers, our 4 year old did to sometime ago much ending his short lived play time in the tub prematurely compared with our other children. So, its been a lot of fun for him to play in the tub again. Then there is our little baby man who Loves playing in the tub! He was getting way to wild in his baby tub and constantly trying to climb out, sit up, and roll away so that this is a much better fit for our crazy guy. They could both stay in there till they pruned away. They play, make bubbles, and splash so much water all over the place that I'm soaked too by the time we have finished up. Seeing them both in the tub having fun together makes me so happy. They have a very sensitive relationship. Our big guy seems to have magnets in his hands and on his mouth that are attracted to his brothers head and about a thousand 10 times a day I say Please don't love on brother that....hard! The baby does not seem to want to reciprocate these feelings of crushing love and glares whenever he sees his brother approaching. Or he just cries in anticipation. But, I think a part of it might just be the youngest in the families lot to have the previous baby of the family be extra affectionate and loving to them.
This is the former baby getting loved on by the baby he replaced ;) He is and probably always will be her baby. She bosses him around and he loves it oddly enough. I think because she does it out of love-- she loves him so much and was his smotherer when he was a baby.
She is very tender and like a little mother to the baby. She is very sensitive to his needs and meeting them and for that I am so thankful!
I don't want to leave out my oldest who is an excellent older brother to the younger two! That's a whole different post though on the life of boys ... and the relationship of my older two is also a much, much longer post! Ha! How are all the different relationships in your household?

From Lawn to Garden Part 5

These past few weeks have been a little busy and even though we have kept up on planting our seeds and photographing it, Ive been a little negligent with the blog. So here is what was happening two weeks ago...
And I realize that in the picture it says three weeks ago, but it was 2. Two weeks ago our spinach finally sprouted! They took the full 12 days and I was getting a bit nervous but in their own sweet time they sprouted and are now going strong. Our lettuce shoots that we were trying to re-grow from the cast offs are not doing so great. I was a bit optimistic that these cleaner cuts would do better than previous attempts, but now these ones are beginning to turn brown. This is our third attempt and I think its a bust!
My 8 year old was my helper last week and due to some miscommunication he brought the soil in instead of the container out and it was quite the mess. But, he was a good sport and did a thorough clean up job and blessed me in the process.
Last week we started two broccoli seeds, two artichokes, and eight thyme plants. My four year old and I also planted a few oregano seeds but they are so microscopically tiny I have no idea how many went in ;) We start everything in even numbers-- always at least two for pollination purposes and also in the hopes that if one fails, the other won't. It's not a scientific theory to my knowledge but what we do. It has been a lot of fun watching the seeds sprout and the sprouts grow their true leaves! These next two weeks we will be starting a lot of our seeds as we will be 6-8 weeks from the last frost in our area. I feel overly optimistic typing that sentence as we still have 6-8 inches of snow on the ground and more to come! Normally I love winter, but this year I'm itching to get outside and begin all that we need to do! Not only do we have to cut all the sod, prepare the beds, fasten climbing contraptions, but a lot of our exterior areas need re-painted or painted for the first time since some of the outside got re-done when we did the kitchen. So, a big to do list awaits us but we have never been so excited to begin! Have you started any seeds yet?

Monday, February 10, 2014

From Lawn to Garden (Part 4)

Hello! This week we had tons of snow and ice in the northeast, but inside, our seedlings have sprouted!
Our little cabbages are growing quickly! Just since I took this picture a few days ago the seedlings have grown to about an inch and a half. Its been very exciting for the kids to see actual growth taking place. I think we finally figured out how to grow our lettuce cut offs and it appears to be all in how you cut the base that helps them to grow. I discarded two that weren't growing properly and now we have two left that are growing from the center and we should have some new lettuce soon.
This week we planted our Bloomsdale spinach in an egg carton. I have to say thus far I prefer starting seeds in old vegetable/fruit containers. They drain better and allow for more sunlight to filter through and create almost a mini green house. The egg carton is getting soggy and the soil on top is drying out quicker using this method. Speaking of soil watering, we have been doing some research and have found these to be an interesting prospect for watering our garden this spring and summer. Have you ever used an olla? I am hoping I can convince my sister who has dabbled in pottery at her university to make me a few.
In the meantime as much as we would like to get outside and begin putting up some trellises or preparing the yard to have the grass removed with a sod cutter that's just not going to happen for a few more weeks as we get hit with snow storm after snow storm/ The kids have been diligently keeping up with their schoolwork and we haven't taken any snow days as we are waiting for SUN days :) I am so proud of my daughter as she perseveres and is plugging along with her reading lessons. This year we began using BOB books instead of her 100 easy lessons which worked so well for my son but was making her miserable. These are little books that she can read and feel triumphant! I liked them so much I got them for our little guy and he loves the ABC set. I am loving homeschooling him as well as he reminds me of my older son-- he can just memorize much faster and also has sister's love for learning. It's a pretty nice combination!

Saturday, February 8, 2014

Snowy Days

Here in the Northeast we have been having my dream winter-- lots of snow! In January it was a bit too cold for the kids to really get out and play-- especially for the baby! But yesterday, we had perfect "movie" snow descend upon us. It was absolutely lovely to watch as we did our school (only 60 days left which means we will be done sometime in April).
Look a my sweet baby and his eyelashes catching the snowflakes! So precious! This was her first time out to play in the snow. And he didn't like it which was sad, but I think it was because the snow was so wet and kept getting into his eyes and that is the only reason he didn't enjoy this lovely gift descending from above!
I did take all four for a quick little walk up and down the snowy street before I decided that my neighbors had had their fill of loud kids and a screaming baby. Plus, we had to shovel (which mr. D actually enjoyed watching us shovel more than anything else we did outside...hmmm) and shoveling led to snow ball fights. Of course.
Since we are still enjoying life without our tv, we have surprisingly still not missed or even noticed it gone even with all this extra time in doors.
The kids and I have enjoyed crafts, reading, and of course snuggles. And the ipad. We aren't a very gadgety family but this is our weakness. Thankfully mine has a lot of educational games on there and their time is limited. In the evenings we hit up our stash of board games!
Our favorites are Catan Jr., Monopoly, UNO, pick up sticks, and here we are playing the Enchanted Forrest. So much fun staying cozy and warm and snowed in! What do you like to do when you get snowed in?