Tent city

The evolution of a Valentine’s Day “card”

The girls and I turned our patio door into a giant, surprise Valentine’s Day card for Chris while he was working on Saturday. It was fun and super messy.

Duck, duck, duck!

One of my dear friends from the lab loaned us a wonderful (if annoyingly noisy) game this week… it’s become an instant hit!

All it took was a little instruction from Papa to get them started.

LiliBee asked for a little clarification.

CareBear needed a little reminder.

But, once they got going, a good time was had by all!

Indoor playground

When we’re bored or the weather keeps us inside, we often end up with an indoor “playground”… they like to surprise me with it.

CareBear likes to show off their handiwork.

LiliBee explains how everything works.

And then there is lots of climbing.

And jumping.

And climbing.

And, surprisingly, a lot of getting along!

Isn’t it cold out there?

My kids are nudists. It’s hard to keep clothes on them and even harder to keep coats and shoes on them. So, of course, they like to go outside. In November. When it’s practically freezing.

They’re apparently playing with scraps of the new floor.

And fishing in the water dish, or something.

I ask them “aren’t you cold?”…

And LiliBee agrees that it might be a bit chilly.

Weekly update

Well, we’re almost through week three of remodeling! We’re still living in one room, but the floors are done and furniture is starting to move back into the regular places downstairs! We had some challenges over the last week with getting the floor finished. There were still a couple of rooms left to do after Chris and his dad were out of vacation time so we hired it out in hopes of getting it finished in time for LiliBee’s birthday (remodeling tip: calling yourself a “professional” doesn’t necessarily make it so… stay away from Kings Flooring!), but after hours and hours of repair by Chris and his folks the floor looks fabulous! The girls love it and the critters are happy to be able to check out the rest of the house again. With any luck, we’ll be mostly moved back in by this weekend! Though then we’ll be moving on to painting and getting trim back up. It will be a luxury to be able to use the kitchen and get more than 5 feet away from the kids…

We had a pretty boring week for the most part, just the usual stuff. CareBear went to school, we visited the farm, we ran errands in the rain. Our big fun was going to Z’s third birthday party! Cake, balloons and presents are always lots of fun. The birthday girl got a big kick out of blowing out the candles and doing some quality control on the cake frosting. It’s fun to see all of the kids growing up and changing so much year to year.

I promised to share the ultrasound pictures of Banjo this week, but my scanner won’t talk to my computer. I’ll have to get my computer guy right on that… or I might wait until he’s not so overwhelmed with finishing the rest of the house!

This week will hopefully bring things back to normal. Chris is back to work after his unanticipated vacation time and I get to go to preschool on Thursday to play with the kids… I mean “work”. And we’ll be planning for LiliBee’s birthday! I can’t believe she’s going to be two years old next week…



Scheduled to arrive early next year.

Taking pictures of kids…

Taking pictures of kids can be challenging… but we keep trying. I don’t know why.

“Stand over there together so we can take a cute picture of you!”

“Ok, look over here!”

There. Kind of.

And it’s all over.

So, like idiots, we tried again.

“Stand by that tree so we can see how tall you are!”

“Ok, look at the camera!”

“Yes, that’s a pretty dress.”

“Can’t you both smile at the same time?”

And, because we are incapable of learning our lesson…

“Sit on those cool benches!”

“Wait! Let me take the picture!”

Ehhh… forget it.

This is why I take so many pictures. It takes a lot to get a few good ones!


Sometimes the kids share very nicely, sometimes not so much. I particularly love it when it’s their idea.


We recently found a fun recipe for goo… cornstarch, enough water to make it “funky” and food coloring. This is generally something that we try to do outside, but the recent record heat wave convinced us to play with it inside.

The kids love the goo because it acts kind of solid when you pick it up and then oozes right through your fingers.

This makes it particularly good for making a big mess.

You’ll notice that I tried to use a sheet to keep things a bit cleaner. It didn’t work.

Luckily, this stuff dries fairly quickly and sweeps or vacuums relatively easily once it does. Cleaning up the kids requires a little more creativity… particularly trying to keep them from shedding bits of colored goo all over the house.

I’ve learned that the pink and green colors clean up more easily than the blue.

After the fun of goo time, everyone needs a break.

Though CareBear’s definition of “break” is different than LiliBee’s.

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