Saturday, June 30, 2007

Beach Day!

Living in Florida has the wonderful perk of free entertainment via the beach! So yesterday (Friday) we decided to go after lunch. We had a few drenching rains come down that morning, and Elizabeth was very worried that we wouldn't be able to go since the clouds were coming from the direction of the Ocean. We loaded up anyway (with fewer toys, bags, equipment, than last time since we hadn't used half of it, yet it still got sandy) and headed toward St. Augustine (the oldest city in the US). Amazingly, we found a very close parking spot to a new beach we hadn't been to. Elizabeth immediately raced toward the waves with a plastic cup sailboat she had made. Jonathan saw the crashing waves and started crying and chasing after Dad who had to head back to the car to put away his cell phone. Phoebe quieted down from her crying she had been doing in the car. She tries to walk mostly now, but when she couldn't walk, she kind of walked on her feet and hands with her bottom in the air since the rocky sand hurt her knees. She kept crawling toward the waves and they would knock her over. So we dug a hole in the sand and put her in it and she mostly played with Jonathan and parent (Phillip and I switched off) in the sand. Elizabeth kept wanting us to go in with her and jump into the waves. We never went out very far, but it was fun. We buried Phillip in the sand and dug several holes. Sandcastles don't usually work because of the little destroyer (Phoebe, of course). We only stayed about 2 hours, but it was fun and free and we were together as a family! Sorry we don't have pictures, but cameras and sand/water don't mix. The pictures above are from the kids making an ice sculpture last week.

Sunday, June 24, 2007


~~~~~~~~~~~~~ I just wanted to post a few pictures of the kids. In the first picture I don't know if you can tell, but Phoebe got bitten at church today in the nursery, so I took a picture of her war wound (on her forehead). All the other pictures were before church. See Phoebe walking? Also, Mom do you recognize the skirt Elizabeth is wearing? It's one you made for me when I was little. It's a little long on her, but she loves to wear it.

Saturday, June 23, 2007

Women's Brunch!

We attended (well, I attended and the kids were in the playgroup with other kids) a wonderful Ladies Summer Brunch this morning! There was a local celebrity chef (Chef Jessica Bright) who made our brunch. It was so nice to meet her because I hear her on the radio and really enjoy her recipes. She made shrimp and cheese grits (my favorite dish because it was kind of Cajun cooking), fruit salad, mini eclairs, cinnamon and almond french toast, and herb biscuits and ham. There was also mint and lemon water, plumeria punch (sounds so pretty, doesn't it?), and a cold coffee punch with ice cream. I had a good time even though I didn't really know anyone.

While I'm talking about food, I'll share a recipe with you all that makes a great summer meal for our family: It's from Taste of Home magazine and is called Three-Meat Stromboli:

4 loaves (1 lb each) frozen bread dough, thawed (we also make our own bread dough or buy canned crescent rolls and roll it out into a rectangle)
1/2 lb. thinly sliced deli salami
1/2 lb. thinly sliced deli ham
1/2 lb. thinly sliced pepporoni
1/2 lb. thinly sliced provolone cheese
2 cups (8 oz) shredded mozzerella
1/2 cup grated Romano or Parmesan
1 Tablespoon garlic powder
1 Tablespoon dried oregano
1 teaspoon dried parsley flakes
1 teaspoon pepper
1 egg yolk, beaten

Let dough rise until double; punch down. Roll each loaf into a 15 in x 12 in rectangle. Arrange a fourth of salami, ham, pepperoni and provolone over each rectangle. Sprinkle each with a fourth of mozzarella, Romano, garlic powder, oregano, parsley and pepper. Roll each rectangle up jelly roll style, beginning with long side. Seals seams and ends. Place seam side down on two greased baking sheets. Brush with egg yolk. Bake at 375 degrees for 25-30 minutes or until golden brown. Let stand 5 minutes before slicing. Serve warm. Refrigerate leftovers. Yield: 4 loaves (8 slices each).

This might also be really good with sliced chicken or turkey breast and spinach or sauteed onions and green peppers!

The kids should be back soon from getting ice cream with Dad at Scoopy Doos. By the way, Phoebe is really walking now!

Thursday, June 21, 2007

Homemade Ice Cream

There is a lot going on this summer! Tuesday we went to the library to watch a juggler. There were probably 50 kids there and Elizabeth and Jonathan sat up front by themselves (Phoebe and I were in the back) and didn't move or disrupt or be loud like a lot of other kids. I was very proud of them. Their favorite part was when the juggler did the chinese yo-yo (he bounces the yo-yo on a string and throws it in the air and keeps it spinning the whole time).

Wednesday we had some neighbors over for homemade chocolate chip mint ice cream which the kids made. The mom and I talked homeschooling while the kids played. Jonathan has a hard time when others come to the house and want to play with his toys and be in his chair and help in the kitchen. He sat on the couch for a while and calmed down and then was agreeable. The neighbor kids love to play with Phoebe, so they kept giving her any nuks they found and putting bibs on her. She likes the diversion of new company, I think. Elizabeth likes to show everyone her new projects that she's made.

Today we are going to make a project that Elizabeth came up with: she cut up two old shirts and wants me to sew the two halves of each shirt together. So we'll see how it turns out. It's kind of nice to be home today.

Monday, June 18, 2007

Father's Day, etc.

Yesterday was a nice calm Father's Day. The kids each picked out a card for Phillip and wrote in it. Jonathan picked a Superman card and only wanted to write "Superheroes!" in it, so that's what we did. Elizabeth's was a baby blue card about doing things together with Dad. Very appropriate for both of them. His gift is coming in a week: A DVD about back to the basics with Jim Cramer (TV guy who gives advice about financial things and the stock market). Elizabeth thought of this actually. THe kids and I went to Black Creek Trails which is a nice bike trail that leads to Black Creek. We walk down it about 1/2 mile and Elizabeth plays in the brackish water, Jonathan plays in the sand and loves to throw sand and sticks into the water, and Phoebe gets down from her stroller and tries to eat the sand. We then walked down a path cut in the woods and explored a little. It took a while to get to the end of the trail which finally ended at the bike path and then we walked down to our car. It was tiring, but I'm so glad we have trails like this for the kids to play in and explore. Lots of bugs and birds and butterflies.

Today we met with some friends at a cool park. It has these huge wooden structures to play in (kind of like a fort), a sand box, swings and slides. And it's shaded by trees. It's something I would have loved as a kid. So the kids got very dirty again ~ more baths and cleaning out the car! One of the little boys who is 7 or 8 likes to carry Phoebe around. She clings to him like a little monkey and seems to enjoy it just fine.

Elizabeth just made a card for God ~ it has a huge heart and says "God, I love you". She drew some other symbols: a cross, wine and bread, a thorn crown and world). She's going to put it in the offering with her money this Sunday. I love it!

Jonathan made a hot wheel card and one that says, "Ah, ah, bubblegum" (or so he says). He put one in the mailbox, but I'm not sure who he's mailing it to.

Saturday, June 16, 2007

Peanut Butter Pinata

The kids are making a peanut butter cookie pinata to be opened (by the swinging of a stick) at 3:00 which is their snack time. I went shopping today at Wal-Mart, so now our shelves are stocked (partly with peanut butter cookies). I've had several complaints these past few days that we are out of food, so I bought lots of food. Two loaves of bread! I usually only buy one, but the last loaf I bought lasted only one day. So I'll try buying two at a time and see how that goes.

We are making our way through the Laura Ingalls series starting this week. We got Little House in the Big Woods from the library. I thought it would be too much to read to them and get it done in a timely enough manner to return it to the library on time, but I think with one renewal, we can get through it. It's an easy read and the wording is understandable at least to Elizabeth. I didn't think I would have her read them until she was older, but the Charlotte Mason (she's a leader in the home education movement) websites I'm trying to follow recommend them for ages 5 and 6. I think I read the whole series 7 times growing up~ I loved them then and I still enjoy them now.

We have several on-going projects: a butterfly garden growing in pots (we can't plant in the ground because of association rules), beans growing in a plastic cup with wet paper towels, a snail living in a plastic container on an outside deck chair, continual art projects of various inspirations, and anything else that comes across their interest. This summer we're listening to Beethoven music and doing lots of reading~ a little bit of Spanish and math and lots of outdoor time when the weather is not too hot. I'm doing a lot of research on what I want to do for Elizabeth's schooling this fall, since I have to officially register with the local school district and keep a portfolio of school work starting in August. I enjoy the research and will start purchasing books here soon.

It's almost time for pinata fun!

Friday, June 15, 2007

New blog for the Gores!

We are still working on getting our home to finish selling. (I say finish selling because I'm afraid some inspection or something will not work out and the deal will fall through.) June 22 is when all inspections, appraisals should be done and our buyer should have a loan and July 9 is when she'll take possession.

The kids are going a little crazy lately. Jonathan and Elizabeth have been fighting. He wants her toys, but she won't share. But she'll share with Phoebe. Hmmm. And the whining! On both counts. So they've been sitting on the couch quite a bit today. They are so sweet when they're by themselves with you: sitting on your lap or something. A friend here asked the other day why kids fight (she has 5). I told her it must be because they enjoy it. Kids won't actively participate in something they don't enjoy, especially if you're not making them. Maybe I need to give them more to do so they are preoccupied.

Phoebe has taken some steps! She should be walking soon. She's a lot of fun with her talking and dancing and joining in with the rambunctiousness that goes on around the house. She likes to try to get my attention by yelling "Mama! Mama!". I think she copies Jonathan.

Well, this is my first attempt at a blog. I would like family to hear about the kids more often. So check back to see what they are doing next!