Sunday, January 31, 2010

Snow Day! (Guest Blogger: Chris)

Yesterday I took the boys up into the mountains for a sledding birthday party. We met the birthday boy and other families at a sledding hill in Hyak, just beyond Snoqualmie Pass. We've had no snow in Seattle this winter, and so this was a welcome opportunity. The boys got bored with the sledding fairly quickly (the slope was not as steep as the "sledding hill" next to our house), so they dragged me into the woods for a snowball fight and snowman construction. A picnic lunch and birthday cupcakes finished a fun morning.

Foot Report

I'm now a little over half-way with my time on the crutches -- the "stilts", as Yogi calls them. The stitches were removed last Friday and I'm starting to exercise my big toe (which amounts to bending it back and forth 100 times a day). The whole thing is becoming a big drag. I'm tired of the pain and the hassle and of sitting around most of the day. Plus, I'm finding it really hard to sleep. On the bright side, I've gotten a lot of reading in.

Saturday, January 23, 2010

Because you asked!

Drum roll, please....TAH DAH!
There's my foot. Ok, I know it may not look pretty to you, but Dr. McInnes was really excited about how neatly and quickly I'm healing. He said the surgery itself was beautiful. This is a relatively new procedure - one that's been done on knees and ankles for awhile now, but they've just started trying it out on toes.

Based on Beck's reaction, I told him he may not have a future in medicine.

There's Dr. McInnes with my foot. The other guy is a physical therapist.

"Real Animals"

The boys went to the zoo with my dad the other day. When they arrived back home they burst through the door full of excitement to tell me that they had seen a "real owl" -- as in a wild owl who swooped through the trees above their heads in the shady, wooded outdoor habitat playground area. And this, of course, was at the end of an afternoon seeing all kinds of real (but not wild at all) exotic and interesting animals.

I think this is the same distinction kids make about school vs. "real life". And that excitement they felt at seeing the real owl? That's the same place I'm trying to touch by homeschooling and having them spend as much time as possible doing real things in real life.

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Beck's 6th Birthday!

This was actually Beck's first birthday party so we decided to do something special for him -- and what could be more special than a private party at the Lego store before regular mall hours?!

Our group coming together in front of the store.

Inside the store during the initial presentation. Those two employees are explaining which sets the party goers could choose from.

Beck, busy building his new set.

All the kids quietly building. It was a very industrious party!

Yogi trying out some sound effects with one of his pieces.

We finished off the party with a big hit of sugar -- Top Pot doughnuts washed down with chocolate milk. Don't you love Ember's party attire?

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

My Left Foot

So. It's over and the surgery went well, I guess. I haven't actually seen my foot as it's covered in dressings, wrapped tightly with an ace bandage and then sheathed in a big velcro strapped boot which makes it look something like a Frankenstein foot. The doctors did end up doing the bone graft so I have two incisions - one on my big toe where they did the repair and one where they went in to harvest some bone. Unbelievably, the pain has seriously diminished since the surgery on Friday. I'm still taking some pain relief, but not much.

Now I'm just trying to focus on keeping my foot up. I'm only allowed to let it be down for 10 minutes at a time and then only when necessary. This makes doing pretty much anything I usually accomplish impossible so I'm relying on my parents who are so generously helping us out.

Right now they have all three kids and are out doing errands. It is so strange to be home and have it quiet. A little surreal, actually. And it's strange to have my whole life come to a halt. No more plans, schedules, play dates. I'm hoping my dad will still take the kids on the weekly hike we do with other homeschoolers and take them to their weekly sports class, but I can't do it either way. And as much as an inconvenience as this is, the slowing down and quieting down of our life is nice.

Lego Organization

So, I'll know my kids are seriously getting older when Legos (and organizing them!) stop being one of the main parts of my job as house manager. Here are a few sites that caught my eye to help with our legos:Box 4 Blox is a clever storage / organizing tool that simply sorts all your legos into like size groups.Be sure to check out the video to see it in action. And then this site has a nice article on how to organize your legos for efficient building.

We still just sort into 4 categories using a 3 drawer organizer and one big lidded tub, but I'm always looking for good ideas!

The Thompson System:

bodies, body parts, and completed figures
itty bitties

all the rest.

Thursday, January 7, 2010

Sunday, January 3, 2010

Out With the Old!

Well, happy new year to you! Here we are in 2010 already and I have to say that so far it's been a fabulous year! Of course, it doesn't hurt that my sister had the kids for 5 hours yesterday (a Christmas present to me and Chris). We hung out in our clean house (usually that state only lasts a few minutes) and then went to a local and wonderful little restaurant called Pair for a schooner of beer, a small oval platter of Pommes Frites, and some conversation about our house goals for 2010. Next on the list: upstairs fireplace. When we got home I even had time for a lavender bubble bath. It was lovely!

What else? After a visit from my sister in law and niece I decided to rearrange the living room furniture. The idea of spaces having energy came up in conversation and I decided that it was time to change up the energy in our common space. I'm not sure if it's a better arrangement, but it sure feels good.

And let's see, on New Years after the kids were in bed, we sunk into the couch with what I thought would be a nice feel-good movie. It was Julie and Julia, but we didn't make it through because I couldn't stand Meryl's Streep's take on Julia Child. My god, she was annoying. It was like watching a large, drunk, horsey clown. I can't imagine the real Julia was quite that bad because how could anyone stand to be around her long enough to learn how to cook?!

Beck lost his first tooth this morning. I remember how excited I was when that one came in. The new one is twice the size and across the top is a neat row of bumps. So cute!

Here are some photos of the recent hair cuts. New hair, new teeth, new living room! Out with the old, in with the new!!