Tuesday, July 1, 2014

Flo-Rida & birthday parties.

School ended and we flew headfirst into summer with a 13 hour drive to Yulee, Florida to see Nana & Pop pop.  Scorching heat and bath water ocean temperatures pretty much sum up a June-Florida, but we kept cool with swim suits and lots of ice cream.  Eli developed a pretty strong bond with Pop pop, which was sweet for us all to witness:)

Nana & Pop pop put in quite a few hours of prep-work before we arrived, decorating wooden swords & shields, "tenting" the bedroom, making cookie sheets full of buck-eyes & a pretzel-caramel- combination-cookie-bar that I fell hard for (and consumed largely alone).  It was a really special week for us all!

#3 had the best time modeling the outfits in Mom's closet-sized T.J. Maxx.  What a cutie!

The day before we left, we celebrated the boys birthdays (5 & 2!)  This was the first year I've ever done anything other than a small family gathering, and we had a pretty great time.

The big birthday wish was for a "Flash" costume, which of course Grammie & Grampa came through on!

Sunday, June 1, 2014

A last look

We recently arrived home from a 24 hour round trip to Groton Vermont, to be present for my Grammie's burial.  Grammie passed away Dec 26, 2013, but in VT the ground stays frozen until May, so the burial was postponed.
Grandpa passed away in February of the same year.  I haven't said much about it.  I've thought through everything very slowly and in pieces.

My extended family has a beautiful sense of harmony.  I've never met anyone with the humor we share or the memories we've created- even though we see each other sometimes less than annually.  We are spread out through Canada, down into Vermont, Wisconsin, Pennsylvania, Virginia... yet each time we meet we still manage to pick up right where we left off.

Dad & his brothers & sister grew up in the same house Grammie & Grampa left- full of memories. We spent Christmases and summers there, making our own.
Ben and I packed up the kids and drove up with my parents to a family member's camp, where we spent 3 days revisiting the places I loved as a child.

Eli on Grammie & Grampa's porch.

Si on the porch.

Rowen meeting Uncle David.

Si @ the burial.

Jordi's @ Grammie & Grampa's house.

Eating @ P&H, the #3 truck stop in the States, and the home of Grammie's famous Reese pie.

Napping in the cabin.

NOT napping in the cabin!

The backyard...

...and the front.

Groton, VT-where Dad grew up.

The church Dad grew up at, and we attended on vacations.

Ricker's pond- where Dad swam as a kid, and we did the same:)

Our swimming hole.

Dad & the boys hunting for moose antlers.

A HUGE shoutout to Ben, who drove me around in the rain to take pictures of all the places I remembered, AND who got me inside of the old church for a walk through.  AND who spent $20 on candy at Chutters candy store:)  He really is the best guy ever.

So we're home now, remember Grammie & Grampa with love and thanks for the legacy of Jesus & family they left behind.

School ends in a few short days, and then begins a super fun summer- kicked off with a DOUBLE birthday party and a trip to Florida!!  

Sunday, April 20, 2014

2 month catch-up!

It has been a crazy-wonderful March through April... Here's what we've been up to in no particular order...

*I finally assembled a sensory bin for the boys... this was our "farm" themed one.  It was a huge hit, and was a nice intro into the horse grooming tools Eli is learning to use (he's taking horse riding lessons).

A sensory bin is basically a group of items selected based around a theme or idea- it could be a season, a month, a holiday, a movie, a book, anything (I've been doing a lot of reading about Montessori methods of teaching and I'm hooked!).  It's nice to find items with lots of different textures, smells, etc.  It's a wonderful therapy tool for autism, but I have found that Silas loves playing with it just as much as Elijah.  In this one I included several plastic farm animals (different types of horses being the focus), owl & chicken feathers, hollow chicken eggs, clay pots for scooping, a metal tractor & John Deere Gator, twine, raffia & burlap scraps, and grooming brushes and mixed all the items into a bin filled with different types of birdseed.  Our next one will be made during our trip to Florida, we're going to do a beach-themed one! :)