Sunday, December 20, 2015

Star Wars Week. It's a Thing.

So we have some Star Wars fans in our household. 

I saw my first Star Wars movie in the theatre with my parents and siblings when I was 17 or 18. "Return of the Jedi" was the only one I had seen until Phillip and I dated, and it was kind of a requirement that I watch them before our relationship could proceed. (JK. It wasn't that bad. But he was definitely holding his nerdiness back until we were married.)

The new movie has been much anticipated this past year. They watched the originals leading up to release of "The Force Awakens." And then we took Friday off of school to go see the movie that morning. (Thank you to Uncle Cory for the Christmas movie gift card!)

We all highly enjoyed it. It was kind of overwhelming to watch it on the big screen. There's a lot to take in. The new characters were so much fun. The old characters were familiar and comfortable. It was classic Star Wars. A good story, good action, great dialogue. J.J. Abrams did not disappoint. 

We've been taking walks at night to get some exercise and found some trees in our neighborhood for the kids to climb. Bunch of monkeys.

Phoebe has been creating doll outfits for her rag doll. She's spent quite a bit of her money on sewing notions and material lately. I need to get her on the sewing machine soon.

Saturday, December 5, 2015

Elizabeth is 14

Fourteen red balloons for Elizabeth.

Phoebe made this formation out of math tiles to celebrate her sister. Jonathan bought some music to share with her on her birthday. Harrison..... I think he was just cute on her birthday. Oh, he shared his sandwich with her at Firehouse Subs.

She wanted a store-bought cake: Black Forest. We had a simple family gathering: ate at Firehouse Subs, had cake and gifts, played Scrabble, went for a crisp evening walk; and then she wanted to go with her dad to "In the Heart of the Sea" in Imax when it comes out next week. 

My dad made her these wooden spoons she can use to cook and bake with. They're gorgeous! She's using birthday money from Mimi and Papa to buy a record player and records as well.  

And since it's officially December, we're "allowed" by certain persons in the house to put up Christmas decor. 

This was a wedding gift from someone at Memphis, MO. It's a favorite Nativity set for the kids to set up. 

And I love this little scent warmer fireplace that my mom gave me a long time ago.

Sunday, November 8, 2015

Visitors and Boxey Pets

Mimi and Papa stopped to visit on their way down to the Valley. It's always a fun time with Mimi and Papa! 

Mimi pulled Elizabeth's hair back to make sure her granddaughter's face could be seen. :-) Thank you, Mimi! It's a beautiful face. And now she's probably embarrassed and won't let me post pics of her again for a couple years. I'll keep you posted as the drama unfolds.....

Several years ago, Elizabeth made these neat little paper toys that she called Boxey Pets. I cannot find a picture of the ones she made, though she made quite a few for people. But they were window boxes with little pets inside attached on three sides to paper strips that you could pull on to make the pet move. 

 Jonathan and Phoebe and Harrison decided to re-launch the line of Boxey Pets but made them a little different by attaching the pets to sticks that go up through the bottom of the box with neat backgrounds inside. Kind of like puppets, I guess. 

Jonathan made an ocean scene.

 Phoebe made a deer in the forest.

 Harrison's is an underground squirrel.

Friday, October 30, 2015

Friday, October 9, 2015

Curly Head

Elizabeth curled Phoebe's hair one Saturday evening. 
Reminiscing about all the times my mother curled my hair on Saturday nights. 

Saturday, September 26, 2015

Harrison and his Buddies

Every morning he wakes up, comes into the living room or kitchen, and lays right back down. 

Saying goodnight to Daddy.

 And his buddy Jonathan makes a good pillow apparently. 

Friday, September 11, 2015

A Couple of Field Trips

We usually don't take Labor Day off of school, but this year we did to take a little family trip to the Car Museum (Dick's Classic Garage) in San Marcos. 

They have a rare Tucker Car (#50). 

There were only 51 of these cars made in the 1940's by a guy named Preston Tucker. They made a movie about it in '88 starring Jeff Bridges. I watched the movie as an adult, and I must say I enjoy Jeff Bridges much more in "True Grit." But the movie did at least lend more interest to seeing a Tucker for the first time. Phillip especially was interested since he saw the movie at 13 and has been wanting to see one.

Harrison thought this toy looked like Mike Mulligan's steam shovel, Mary Anne. 

Elizabeth would love to own several of the cars here. I didn't get pictures of them, but they were cool looking. And we saw two cars that Papa owned back in the day when they were just cars and not Classics. 

And then today was Homeschool Day at Pioneer Farms in Austin. It was a bit of a drive, but the entry fee was much reduced. I've heard about this living farm for some time, so I was glad to get a chance to take the kids. 

When I told Phillip we were visiting Pioneer Farms, he said, "Will there be pig castration? It's not a real farm if there isn't pig castration." And "I grew up on a farm, I'm not paying money to see a fake farm." I thought it was funny.

There weren't any pigs, but there chickens, rabbits, a cat, donkeys, and long horn steer.

I'm helping Harrison make a corn husk doll.

Jonathan liked the flint guy at the Tonkawa Indian Camp. I guess the tents got washed away during the flooding earlier this year, so it was a little bare, but the guy had some interesting things to say.

This was at the German Immigrant Farm. The family that lived in this house had 13 kids. I didn't get a picture of the house, but it was maybe as big as our living room. Maybe half of our living room. It was small. Thirteen kids. They probably played outside a lot.

Chicken coop. 

I just really like Long Horns. There's something substantial about them.

Saturday, August 29, 2015

Cake Decorating

Elizabeth took her last fondant class on Monday. I love the fall colors she used for the cake. It was even full of spicy fall flavors. Delicious and beautiful!

Saturday, August 15, 2015

Summer Leading into Schooltime

We've had a full summer. 
Camps, travels, school planning, birthdays, outings with friends, breathing time, boredom.

I don't know if the kids are, but I'm ready to start school.
Of course, are kids ever ready to start school? I still have Harrison on my side; he's excited. 

The youth group had a Marvel-themed lock-in last Friday. Elizabeth made a subtle Black Widow costume. She won the prize gift card. 

She had a lot of fun making it (and she let me do her makeup!).

Liz is also taking another cake decorating class this year; it's all about fondant.

 Her roses look pretty real.

We had our first week of school this past week. This year I did my best to "cut back until there is peace". This has to happen in the planning stage for me. I'm not sure I could drop a book that I scheduled for the year. I've never done it. Maybe I should try it one day, just to prove to myself that I can. Anyway, I have a hard time letting go of all the good books that are suggested for each child's grade. But I'm realizing that there's absolutely no way to get through all the books this world has to offer ~ not even all the really good ones. And the more we have scheduled for school, the less all that good stuff sticks in their minds. They're always rushing to get the next thing done and don't have time to stop and mull over what they are on. This is not the way a living education works. 

So I took out a couple books from all of their plans and chose a couple of easier ones to replace some hard ones. I also planned for more time on math and grammar, but decided to alternate some subjects instead of do all of them all year long. Some subjects we'll alternate yearly and some we'll alternate by term. I feel like I might get good at this by the time Harrison is ready for high school. 

He's in Kindergarten this year. My baby. The last year to read Winnie the Pooh to my children. I might read it over the summer sometime anyway. The kids all like to come sit in while I'm reading to him. Winnie the Pooh is fun at any age.

Having school definitely helps the kids enjoy each other more. It also gets their creative juices flowing. They spend more time doing stuff they "have" to do (mostly on their own or with me) during the morning/after lunch, so then in the afternoon and evening, they enjoy one another's company again. Summertime brings out the opposite! And then they also seem to be rejuvenated in the afternoons and weekends to try all sorts of new things: drawing, sculpting, planting, card games.... That makes me happy.

Tuesday, August 4, 2015

Jonathan's 11th Birthday

Jonathan had a couple of friends over for his birthday this year. 
Elizabeth made Minecraft Diamond Cupcakes at his request.

He wanted to do the ropes course at Natural Bridge Caverns for his chosen birthday activity. This is the third time he's done it. Uncle John and Aunt Kristy started him on to something, I do believe, when they took us the first time!

It's four stories high. But you're harnessed in, and once you get used to it, the heights aren't bad. I saw a girl loose her footing on a rope and the harness caught her just fine.

There they are: Jonathan, Wyatt and Westley.

And what do you know ~ Legos for his birthday. It's like somebody knows him.

Another fun item that continues to entertain the kids.

This isn't from the birthday but from a day we had some fun roller skating.

Alisa and Emily.

Jonathan and William.


Elizabeth refuses to let me post pictures of her.