Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Be Still, My Heart

We now have a brand spanking new Apple desktop and while there are numerous reasons to be jumping for joy, I'm jumping for joy because that means MY PICTURES WILL AUTOMATICALLY DROP RIGHT INTO THIS COMPUTER WITHOUT ME EVEN LIFTING A FINGER!  Yes, I had to shout that because I'm THAT excited!

Posting updates about the kiddos became such a task before because of the amount of time it took to download my pictures.  The blame is all on my old Macbook, that poor thing is getting up there in years, she doesn't run as smoothly as she once did.  But now none of that matters!

So be prepared for a blog posting frenzy around here!

Let me test this new machine out...see that pumpkin carving picture right there?  That took me all of 3 seconds to post.  Oh my goodness, the time I will save!!

More posts to follow! Yea!

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Monday, October 21, 2013

Another Random Photo Post

 I've got a handful of pictures that don't have a home, so I'm giving them all one here.  A nice little family of random photos.

Ethan was really excited for this family shot:

First of all, Alec's head shape is distorted in this picture...before anyone starts studying it.  Secondly, he saw this little mannequin at Old Navy and wasn't sure what to make of her.  He just stood there face to face with her, I don't think he knows about the 2' personal space rule.  

 Climbing trees at Blackbob park:

 Aunt Kate told us about these workshops at Lowe's (and Home Depot) for little kids.  Our first visit was a build-your-own airplane.  They get an apron to keep and a special pin that shows what they built that month.  We've got more of these scheduled!

To brag on Nick for a minute, he and our friend completed an obstacle course/race called the Tough Mudder last month in Topeka.  It was approximately 10-11 miles long with roughly 15 obstacles throughout.  It took them 2 hours and 10 minutes to complete (which is pretty darn good!) and they both walked away injury free.  Good job guys, I'll be cheering you on NEXT year!

 The boys each took one of their favorite stuffed animals to our downtown library a few weeks ago.  Beth told us about it and I'm glad she did, the boys really enjoyed it!  Basically, you bring your animal in, a library employee reads a couple goodnight books with the group and then you leave your animal to have a slumber party with all their friends. You pick them up the next day and watch a slideshow of all the the trouble they got into during the night.  Really cute idea, the boys want to do it again.

Swimming lesson time!

 He won't touch a worm but just about anything else is game.  At the park he found a very friendly moth who had a wounded wing.  

 Alec got a turn to hold it too.

Have I posted this picture before?  If not, we had the boys help move tree limbs out of the yard with their jeep awhile back.  It really was a help and they dug being useful.

 Have I mentioned Lego's?  Ever since we introduced Ethan to them at his birthday, he's fallen in love.  He plays with them daily and comes up with every invention you can imagine.  We've purchased a couple sets (boy, are they expensive!) and are currently trying to come up with an organizing system.  Here his is a couple months ago, showing off his helicopter.  I'll have to take more pictures of his latest creations because they're becoming more complex, in my opinion anyway.

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Saturday, October 19, 2013

Man on the Moon

After we got a taste of the sky through a pair of binoculars last weekend, we bought ourselves a pair. Ethan was very much interested in looking at the moon.  The binoculars we got are 15 power, so you can get a really good look at the moon.  The first night we checked it out, it was 88% full and sooooo bright.  We also saw Venus and found a few constellations.  Did you know nobody has been on the moon since 1972? I had no idea.

He's got the binoculars set on the moon, which was just coming up.  

 After the sun went down we got a much better look at things.  These weigh 4lbs and are 11 inches long but he handled them like a pro.  I really love how he took an interest in the sky and look forward to learning more about it myself.  We even stopped by the library to check out several astronomy books.  

Did you know the nearest star, other than the sun of course, is no less than 4 LIGHT YEARS away?  And that Venus is the only planet that spins in the opposite direction on its axis compared to all other planets?  Or that we always see the same side of the moon? 

In case you're interested, it's because the amount of time it takes the moon to rotate once on its axis is the same amount of time it takes the moon to travel around the we always see the same side.  Astronomers have a term for this: tidally locked. This information is fascinating I tell you!

I'm learning so much!

All this astronomy talk led us to this...a halloween costume clue.

Oh, and now I know how to find the north star.  And no, it's not the brightest star in the sky like I'd always thought.  I should go back to the 6th grade to relearn all this stuff. Geez!

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All Things Fall

Fall things we've checked off our list:

1. Play date at an apple picking orchard
2. Another play date at an apple cider mill
3. Family trip to a pumpkin patch

First up...the apple orchard!

 A hayrack ride out to the orchard, which lead us to endless rows of apple trees.  Most were golden ones, I forget what he called them, but they were all pretty tiny.  So no apple crisp in our future.  

This was the best picture of all 5 kids at the orchard, ha! Ethan was being a ninja, Alec was spiderman, Noah was wondering what the boys were doing, Addie had to pee?, and Lauren was looking for her lost apple.  
We ate a few more apples, then bought kettlecorn AND apple cider donuts.  We are spoiled.

Next up...pumpkin patch.  It was near Lawrence so we went there first for lunch.  Such a neat little town.  The boys liked just walked down the main strip (Mass street? Can you tell I didn't go to KU?), there are some interesting characters there.

Love this picture, look at Alec's face.  He's so excited.

 Five points if you can find Alec in the picture below.

Seriously some HUGE pumpkins here!

The weather was gorgeous this day, see the clouds?  They were so oddly fluffy and almost fake looking.  We couldn't stop talking about them (it was a thrilling ride home).  

No pictures of the Louisburg Cider Mill, but we went with 3 little boys (all brothers) who are friends of ours from school.  They all behaved so well, I almost couldn't believe we didn't have at least one meltdown.  Anyway, the boys watched the apples being cleaned and turned into cider and also watched them make cider donuts.  Of course, we all got to eat and drink some too!  See? Spoiled.

Happy Fall!

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To Grandma's House We Go

The four of us headed down to my mom's house this past weekend to celebrate my brother's 40th birthday (apparently I took zero pictures of that event).  Like always, we had a great time and the boys got their fill of all things farm.  They said their favorite parts were throwing rocks into the pond (Ethan) and riding on the 4-wheeler (Alec). 

Playing in the open field, they could've played here the entire time and not gotten bored.

Jim, Nick and I went down to the pond to shoot some clay pigeons with shotguns while the rest of the family played at the house. 

 I hate to brag or anything, but I hit 4 in a row.  And I can't tell you the last time I've shot a gun.  Alright, to be fair, Jim and Nick hit plenty, too.  Nick beat me with 6 in a row and he even got the lovely prize of a bruised shoulder to show for it.  So I'm glad I didn't win.

You can see the shotgun shell popping out of the top of Jim's gun.

My mom, Jim and I went back out the next morning so my mom could show off her skills.  She didn't care for the shotgun whatsoever but she could sure shoot a bullseye with her pistol.  

Cutie all dressed to go outside.

The fire was just perfect for keeping warm and roasting marshmallows.  Then we all took a turn looking through Jim's binoculars.  The sky view at the farm is breathtaking.  The number of stars visible without the city lights to scare them away is amazing.  I could've looked at them all night long. 

Dakota, Ethan and Alec

 The flash was kinda bright in the dark of night. Sorry, Alec!

 It took about an an hour on the car ride home before this peaceful moment was noticed:

I'd say the trip was a success.

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