Monday, April 29, 2013

New Bikes!

Riley has the Bike Rodeo at school on Friday and her bike has a tire that is not working well at all - totally deflated and won't stay pumped up which makes it really hard for her to pedal.  I had to take the girls to Walmart to get their friend Emma a gift for her birthday party tomorrow so we looked at the bikes.  (and if you've read the other blogs, yes - I did somehow manage to pick up Julia after school, take her to the doctor, go to walmart to get the bikes and gift, take the girls to Sonic for dinner and then to gymnastics.  All between the hours of 3pm - 6pm.  7pm if you count the hour we were at gymnastics.  They are totally worth it!)

Julia fits on the 16" bike and Riley is still on a 18" bike.  Julia's bike is LaLaLoopsy and has a basket and a seat behind her where she can take her baby for a ride.  So cute!!!

Riley's bike is pink and purple and white.  Had to get her a new helmet as the old one is way too small.  Julia now uses Riley's old one.  Riley has always wanted a basket on her bike.  So I got her a basket too and hooked it on.  They are soooo excited to go riding!  Riley said the sweetest "thank you" when we got home and gave me the biggest hug.  Then told Jeremy thank you later.

I have no doubt that they'll be riding bikes later this week when we are home - can't wait!!

Julia's Three Year Check-Up

Took Julia to the Dr. today.  She got out the round stool and said "I get this out for the Doctor."  She was very chatty and talked a lot.  She kept touching the Dr's knees and arms.  Was too funny.  She was very comfortable with him.

She is 3' 1" tall and 31 lbs.  Both are smack dab at 50% for her age.  She is cute, spunky and the Dr. said that he could tell she was doing really good with her speech.  And then he laughed because she hadn't stopped talking since he'd come in.

Gymnastics Lessons - Lesson Two

The girls have both been wearing leotards all week long and practicing different moves.  Riley is especially working so hard and just loving it.  Julia is having tons of fun and smiles so big the entire time.  Riley has a more focused look, but when not doing something and waiting her turn, she is all smiles.

The girls went easily to their groups today and followed their instructors to the warm-up area.  They split off and started with their groups.  Julia worked on the bar, trampoline, running to the springboard and landing on the large mats.  It was hilariously cute to watch her do it the first time.  She ran as fast as her little legs could go and then hit the springboard, stopped on the springboard and then just fell into the mats on purpose right onto her face in slow motion.  Then she got up and ran back laughing to her teacher.  So very much a Julia thing to do!  Loved it!!!

Riley worked on her cartwheels, handstands, rolls, jumps, bar, and running on the runway to jump on the springboard into the high and tall mats.  On the bar, she was told to swing forward and catch the soccer ball between her knees and then hold it there while she was hanging on the bar.  She did a truly amazing job at it!!  Looked very hard!  She did some really awesome cartwheels too.  Was quite impressive to see her make progress just in the last week!

At the end of class, her instructor came to me and told me that she was offering a six week course starting on Saturdays in May and that she thought that Riley would really benefit from the class as she is doing great, but needs some work on her upper body strength.  Totally makes sense as she has only done two classes!!  She said more time in the gym will help her accelerate her progress and that Riley is already up there with the top girls in her class.  I asked if she was doing great and she said that Riley is doing fantastic.  That she is really doing great.  So we'll see if we can do it.  She sure does love it.

Sunday, April 28, 2013

Fun Family Weekend

This weekend was one of the best ever.  We got a ton of chores done - I mowed the lawn; Jeremy edged it.  Jeremy got his hair cut.  I took Julia grocery shopping.  She loves to go with me every weekend and I love the time with her too.  All the laundry is washed/dried/put away.  House vacuumed.  And we had our monthly date night out to Fireside Pies on Friday night.

Those things were all great.  And it felt awesome to get so much done.  But the best part of the weekend was our time with our girls.

We had family movie night last night and watched the movie "Beezus and Ramona."  One of the best movies!!!  We all laughed and cried.  Riley cried a few times during it and has such a tender heart.  Julia laughed several times and the girls sat very close together.  It was so sweet.

Church was amazing today.  Listened to Lee Strobel share his story and it's just an awesome testimony of how he went from Athiest to Jesus-follower in the course of two years due to researching if it really could be true that Jesus was who He said He was.

After church, I started folding laundry and Julia climbed into the laundry basket.  She tossed out a sock at me.  I started tossing the socks back at her and she giggled and laughed so hard.  So of course she started throwing more socks at me and I tossed them back.  Riley wanted to join in so she went upstairs and brought down another laundry basket and climbed in.  Soon the three of us were tossing socks around at each other.  Tons of laughter and tons of smiles.  Jeremy then joined in the fun too.

Half an hour later we were still going strong and laughing.  As Jeremy said "My face hurts from smiling so much!!"  The girls giggles were so contagious.  It was definitely my favorite time all weekend.

Riley read her books to me and did a fantastic job.  She's really an awesome reader.  Julia and I read books before we took a nap.  A three hour nap.  Ahhh... I'll be up late tonight as a result, but it sure was good sleep!!

We had a great dinner.  Riley got out the broom and dustpan without being asked and started to clean the kitchen floor.  Julia followed suit and swept with the other broom and the two of them cleaned the floor with a little help from Jeremy while I did dishes.  We thanked her for helping and she said "It's ok!  I thought of it myself!"  Love her giving heart!

This week is sure to be exciting, fun and full of great things!
Monday - Julia's three year check-up and gymnastics lesson
Tuesday - Piano students and Emma's birthday party
Wednesday - staff meeting and Zumba for Riley and Mom's birthday
Thursday - piano students and Julia's performance and Riley's birthday
Friday - ???
Saturday - Numana in the morning and Riley's birthday party in the afternoon

Looking forward to a great week!

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

5K Cougar Prowl

Last Saturday I completed one of my goals for 2013.  I signed up for a local 5K race through our high school that helped benefit our football team.  Was great to see all these kids that I had taught in 3-5 grade and were now in high school.  Several of my current students also ran in the race.

I hadn't run the last two weeks due to rain and cold weather.  And I really had in mind that I wanted to complete the run without ever stopping to walk.  Running it in under 30 minutes has always been a goal of mine as well.

It was the most perfect weather!  I felt great the whole race and really enjoyed the experience.  The first mile was incredibly easy and I couldn't believe how fast it went.  The second mile felt great as well and then I hit a wall around 2 and a half miles in.  And I chose to take a short walking break.  Ended up walking three short walking breaks and ran the last 1/4 of a mile or so.  Finished right at 36 minutes for 3.1 miles.

I was so excited to have completed a 5K as it has been my goal the last three years and I haven't been able to see it to completion.  Felt really great to know that I did it.  I was bummed to have run it slower than I had hoped.  And I was bummed that I ended up walking even with as short as I did.  But in the end, I am very happy to have done the best I could and to have been able to do as much as I did.

Tonight I went out to run and ran 2.2 miles without stopping.  Thinking that I need to break the wall that I hit at the 2.5 mile point.  And that just comes through training.  Such a great feeling to being running again!

Gymnastics Lessons

Two days ago the girls started gymnastics lessons at Sky High.  It is a close and convenient gymnastics center and is a great place for the girls to start.  Riley has her birthday party there a week from Saturday.  So we had checked out the facility and I talked with a friend whose daughter goes there.  Riley has a friend in her class who is on the competitive team and loves it.  Her mom enjoys it as well and had good things to say.

The girls have been moving around constantly and Riley kept doing gymnastic things in the house.  I chose to sign them up a for a lesson this past week just to see if they would enjoy it.

Julia had one of Madison's old leotards that I had accidentally washed in the dryer and shrunk (otherwise it would have fit Riley!).  Went out and bought Riley a plain leotard from Walmart just for the first lesson.

Riley was extremely focused and smiling at the same time.  She looked right at home.  She worked on handstands, cartwheels, beam, running and jumping on the mats.  She's had two days at home now and is doing amazing with her handstands and rolling out of them.  Very much a natural!

Julia was smiling the whole time, but often had her fingers in her mouth because she was starving.  Hadn't eaten the food I had made because she didn't want it and then became hungry at the gym.  She walked on the balance beam, went on the trampoline, used the rings, and did some rolls and things on the mats.  The teacher had to guide her quite a bit to show her what the other kids did, but Julia tried everything and said she didn't want to leave when class was over.

The girls start this Monday with the classes they were in.  Riley has her gymnastic leotards now - both blue.  She has worn them the last few days after school and practices everything she remembers.  So cute!  Julia also wears her leotard and dances around the room and rolls around.  So cute!


Almost May

Apparently life got busy the last few weeks.  Or at least I did!  Keep falling asleep with the girls because I'm so tired.  Has been an awesome time with the girls at the end of April.

Julia is growing by leaps and bounds in her talking.  She has much to say a lot of the time.  At dinner tonight, she said "I want to talk!" when she had enough of Jeremy talking and was ready to be heard by all of us.  She thinks she is very funny (which she is) and laughs at herself a lot after she says something funny.  Always has a lot of spunk and a gleam in her eye.

Julia is now in Miss Christian's class at school.  Has been quite the adjustment.  Both her and Ariana are working on not pinching, biting or hitting each other.  Her teacher said that she is a very strong and very tough little girl.  That she has put up with a lot and doesn't back down.  Stands up for herself.  I definitely like that!  She has had some nightmares in the past week where she will whimper in her sleep and I'll rub her back and calm her only to have her say "Riley pinching me!  I don't want Riley to pinch me."  Dreaming about what she is experiencing at school with Riley being the challenging girl instead of the girl in class.

She is working through all of it and things are on their way to getting better which is good.

Riley is excelling at school.  She is on a level 14/16 in reading.  At the beginning of first grade, teachers are thrilled if they are on a level 6 in reading.  So she is highly advanced.  Her math is also going excellent.

Riley had her first ride on a school bus yesterday when they went to the zoo.  She didn't say much about the field trip except to say it was fun and she is tired.  Her birthday party is a week from Saturday and she couldn't be more excited about it!!

Saturday, April 13, 2013

Garage Painted - check!

Finished painting the side wall of the garage and above the garage door itself.  Looks so good!!  I still have one wall left to paint, but it's near impossible and we'd have to go out to get another gallon of paint which would mean another $32 and we just don't absolutely need to do it.  So we're not!  There is a huge shelf in the way and it'd be a pain to move it.  Enough on my tangent...

Took an hour and a half to finish the paint job.  I told Jeremy that I wanted to finish it because the weather is beginning to get hot and I just have a feeling that Spring will be rainy and somewhat warm and then we'll just get hit with 90 and 100 degree temps.  Don't feel like painting in the garage in the heat.

The girls rode their bikes around the garage while I painted.  We took some things to CCA and cleaned up the garage even more.  Wow - a huge difference.  I'm such a sucker for before and afters... and this one makes me super excited!!!

Barbie Clothes

Julia has been playing with barbies a lot lately.  She loves them!  The hard part is getting their clothes on and off.  We had a friend who gave us her daughter's old barbie clothes.  Many of them have holes or tears.  We kept them and I even sewed parts of some of them, but they aren't working and the girls get frustrated with them.  And so do I.

I went on pinterest and found the most awesome site for making your own barbie clothes.  Don't want to buy them because they are too expensive!  I tried out the skirt, simple dress, and party dress tutorials from the website and they turned out super cute!!  Can't wait to make some more!  The seams are all of an inch or two.  And they whip up so quickly.  One dress takes less than 15 minutes.  Literally!  Not to mention that hardly any fabric is needed.


Tutorials:  http://www.craftinessisnotoptional.com/



Family Night

We had chicken strips and a rice side for dinner tonight.  Ate very early for us at 5:00pm.  Julia was having another night of tough eating.  Just looked at the food and was about to throw a fit.  We've been doing something that my friend Ed suggested.  Every time Julia throws a fit, I gently take her to her room, set her on her bed and softly say "When you are done throwing your fit, you can come down and join us."  Have only had to do it twice recently and it works like a charm!!!  She has come down both times and sat and eaten her whole dinner.

Tonight looked like we were going to head that way, but instead she was given a warning that she would go upstairs if she continued and she stopped.  Sat down and started eating her chicken.  In fact, ate quite a bit of it.  Then had trouble wanting to eat the rice, but finally had most of it.

I looked at Jeremy and said "Hey, it's gorgeous outside, we're finished early and we're all home.  Want to do a special treat with the girls and go eat Italian Gelato at Paciugo?"  He was totally game and the girls got super excited!!

Finished dinner and headed out to our favorite gelato place.  We got several samples each - so hard to choose!!  Julia wanted to try all of them and kept asking for "this one looks good!  Oh - I try this one?  Mmmmm.... I try this one?"

We each got our own gelato in a cup and went outside on the patio to eat it.  Beautiful weather!!  The girls were in great moods and we all enjoyed a special family treat.  Was a really neat moment for all of us and we laughed a lot and just had fun.

On the car ride home, Jeremy turned on the girls' favorite song:  Little Talks by "Of Monsters and Men."  The girls call it the "Hey Song" because it says hey so much.  We laughed so hard when the girls were yelling "Hey!" (partly because Julia said it in a low, monster sounding voice - hilarious!!)  Jeremy even wiped tears away his was laughing so hard.  The girls had quite a bit of gelato and it was still gorgeous outside.  They asked to go to the park so we stopped by the park before going home.  They played on the swings, slides, and ran around.  Was a very special family night.  One we'll talk about for a while...

Friday, April 12, 2013

Eight More Weeks and One Day Off

Today:  Day off!
After this weekend:  Only eight weeks left of the school year

Got Riley all signed up for First Grade.  Can hardly believe she's that big already!!!  She is blowing us away with her kindness, big heart, smarts and learning curves.  Her reading is beyond amazing and she is changing into more of a grade schooler than a preschooler.  Just so much more mature than a few months ago.  Still spunky and fun but more serious than Julia.

Julia is cute as a button.  Has been showing her dimples a lot lately with big smiles and hearty laughs.  She is joyful and spunky.  She has been in her new preschool class for a few weeks and it has been a big adjustment.  There is a girl who keep pinching her and biting.  Ugh!!!  Thinking this may be the same girl that clashed with her when she was in Miss Hayley's class last year.  Not good.  Yesterday Julia was biting her after being pinched and then the girl bit Julia in the stomach and left both her upper teeth and lower teeth marks forming a full circle.  Her belly is bruised today.  Will definitely be talking to the school's owner about it on Monday to figure out what can be done.  Julia is not perfect in this - she has also bit the girl as well.  She has been crying really hard when I drop her off and it has made it so hard to leave her knowing that she is so unhappy.  Trying to figure out what to do...

The girls and I had a fun day at home today!  They got out the lids to some clear bins, took them to the top of the stairs and sent their animals sledding down the stairs over and over today.  Loved watching them and listening to their laughter.  So contagious!!  They had a ball with it.

Then we went to see baby Josh and baby Jake at my friend Katy's house.  Spent the afternoon with her and her boys.  The girls were in heaven.  Julia would hold Jake's hand (9 week old baby) and pat his back.  The girls followed Josh around in circles - he is 16 months old.  Such a great friend and so fun to watch the kids interacting.

Tonight I put Julia to bed and she kept singing "What the world needs now is love, sweet love..." - practicing for her Spring Sing that is coming up sometime soon.  So cute to listen to her.

Saturday, April 6, 2013

Tooth Fairy Arrives

The tooth fairy made her appearance on Thursday night.  Riley was less than thrilled.  She got $1!!!  We thought that was pretty generous of the tooth fairy.  Riley didn't think so.  Her friend Krittika got a Hello Kitty watch so she was hoping for something like that.  We had a talk about being grateful for everything we get and that while she was hoping for more, it is $1 more towards saving for the American Girl Doll that she wants.

Body Awareness

Story One of the night:

Julia to Grandma:  You have boobs like Mommy!

Grandpa:  What about me?

Julia:  Umm.... let me feel.

(touches Grandpa's shirt)

Julia:  Oh!  Yeah!!  You do!


Story Two of the night:

While eating at Buca, Riley sees a picture of a naked lady in a picture frame.  The restaurant has pictures of all sorts of strange things.

Riley to me:  Hey Mom - that lady doesn't look like you!

Me:  (looking at the totally naked lady in the picture while we're eating) um... ok.

Riley:  I mean - she doesn't look like you.  She looks more like me.

I mean what do you say?  Wasn't about to ask her what she meant by it as I wasn't sure I'd want to hear the answer on that one...


Thursday, April 4, 2013

First Tooth Out

Riley lost her first tooth!!!  Last night at 5:30am, she wiggled it loose and pulled it out.  Then went to Jeremy (I was sleeping in Julia's room) and told him that her tooth was out.  She's super super excited!!!  The tooth fairy will be coming tonight.  She can't wait!  We got a tooth coffin from the nurse at school to hold her tooth.

I asked her what she thought the tooth fairy is going to bring her.  She said a Hello Kitty Watch.  That's what the tooth fairy gave Krittika.  She wonders if her tooth fairy is the same as Krittika's.  Guess we'll find out tonight!