We're embracing summer around here, and I'm trying to get the kids out doing fun things. So far we've gone to a splash pad, a pool, checked out 17 books from the library, had a lemonade stand, played in the sprinklers, gone to the park, played with friends and cousins, gone to the beach, and by the end of the week we will have also gone to a parade and (hopefully) the zoo. Whew! The kids have been loving it, and Hannah has just pretty much been along for the ride! She's a pretty easygoing baby.
The kids have been good little helpers, and we've started re-vamping our chore assignments around here, which has been great! We were paying them for completing their chores each day, but it feels wrong to pay kids to do their chores. They should just do them because they are a part of the family. So I'm working on a different solution, but so far they are still doing their chores even without getting paid, so I call that a success.
The kids are doing great. Ryan is having a blast being home with us, but misses seeing his friends from school. He is a great helper, as usual. Sometimes it surprises me how capable Ryan is. He now takes out all the trash and the recycling, does laundry, can feed and burp Hannah, makes lunch when I ask him to, and is really sweet about bringing me my gigantic mug of water, all filled up with fresh cool water, without me even asking! What a champ. He's a good boy.
Summer seems to have hit Calvin hard. I think he prefers winter, anyways. But he's been staying up much later, getting fewer naps, and the whole Sophie-Calvin dynamic has changed now that Ryan is around all the time. Basically, I think Calvin really loved being the oldest while Ryan was at school and now he's back to not ever being the oldest. I think it's kind of hard for the little guy. But he's still been having lots of fun with our different activities. He and Ryan are each in a soccer class at the YMCA, and Calvin especially loves it.
Sophie is a funny girl. She is in a gymnastics/dance combination class at the YMCA this summer and thinks it is the greatest thing ever. She has really started loving talking to Hannah and trying to play with her. She loves the fact that she has a sister, even if her sister can't really do anything. Sophie also LOVES to play with her cousins, so I think it's been a good summer so far in her book.
Hannah is pretty much just in to eating. Also, she is getting strong enough to sit in the bumbo, which is pretty much my favorite. I can plunk her in front of the mirror and she can make inquisitive faces at her "baby friend". She also still loves the ladybug mobile in her crib. She has a hard time falling asleep if she's not swaddled, and she's getting better at doing some 6 hour stretches of sleep . So she's been a busy gal. Oh, also she went from just over 7 lbs to 13.5 lbs in the course of about 5 weeks. Go, baby, go!
And I have been trying to keep up with these kids! I feel like that's all I do. Maybe that's just this season of life! I've started my piano lessons again, though, and that's been nice (my last lesson was on the day I went into labor with Hannah...). And I've been mulling over doing something intellectual like contacting the Marriott School Alumni chapter in my area to see if they have any volunteer opportunities where I could put my MBA skillz to use a few hours a month or something. Like a real live case I could work on pro bono. I don't know if that's even possible, but something like that would be nice. We'll see.
Michael has been working hard. In fact, right now he is spending his only free time of the day tearing apart and fixing our broken couch (side note, how can something so expensive be so shoddily made???). Lest you think this is an easy fix, it involves four 7 foot long 2x4's from home depot, a saw, some pliers, a power drill and lots of screws. He is always doing stuff like that. What a guy, what a guy!
So that's our life lately. Here are a couple of pictures!
Ryan sure loves this little lady. He calls her Baby Banana.
Sophie on a particularly awesome hair day.
Calvin begged me to come take a picture of his bubble beard.
Sophie all dolled up for dance class!
Note my valiant attempt at a bun.
Thumbs up! She had such a great time.
I got to hang out with my cousin, Stephanie, who is an oboist with the orchestra that plays for the Mormon Tabernacle Choir, who were here on tour last week. It was so fun to see her!
Ryan made what I assumed to be a paper snowflake, but then taped it to his head, and taped some other paper to his body and said, " Look, Mom! It's a skeleton costume!" Nice.
Michael taking the kids on a canoe adventure in the back yard:
I came in to the living room to find this the other day. It was sweet. And even though I cringed because Sophie had been throwing up all day, I still had to take a picture before asking her nicely to please stay away from the baby while she was sick.