Video Thursday!

Ok, so there isn’t really a thing called Video Thursday.  I just happen to have some videos which I’ve finally uploaded, and its going up on a Thursday.  This is just about as creative as I get.  Don’t get your hopes up for next week.

The first set of three vids are from about a month and a half ago (April 10th).  They’re all pretty short, and show Nat working with Rachel.

 

This next set of vids is from earlier today and show Nat working with Lisa, her original instructor and the owner of the place.

 

We think Nat being able to work with both instructors is great.  Lisa pushes things a bit more, while Rachel allows Nat to be comfortable and goes a bit more slowly.  Nat has responded very well to both of them, though.  We think she shows a lot of improvement, and are very proud of what she’s able to do now.

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Whew

We’re busy….mostly outside, so I’m not getting much else done and therefore feel very behind. The rest of the week is also busy – more time tomorrow with the neighborhood kids, then horseback riding lessons. Friday sees us back at the farm for our, “Brilliant Bees!” class, and Saturday has James back at the building painting and cleaning for our new second floor tenants! We have a signed lease and everything, whoo hoo! Hopefully, James will be home in time for one of us (or all of us if Conrad naps) to hit the square with Natalie. The Buddhist temple will be leading a lantern parade around the square on Saturday evening, and we’d love to experience it! Not much else to report….Natalie is gearing up for one of her painting classes at the end of next month and getting excited about it. We’re filling our calendar with lots of fairs and events for the summer. Hope everyone is having a good week!

Memorial Day

We weren’t sure about the weather at first, but the storms held off and we headed to the square to enjoy the parade! It cleared out pretty quickly once it was over, so we got some cool drinks and hung out in the park in the square before heading home. Nat was desperate to hook up with her new friends, and after lunch, we saw them hanging out in front of the mayor’s house, staring at our house….so I told Nat they were looking for her and she hopped up, put on her shoes and ran out! It was another marathon of playing and 3.5 hours later, the oldest walked Natalie home for dinner. We ordered dinner, ate and then headed back out for the rain! Conrad is big into puddles while Natalie has moved on from that stage….a bit anyways. It was a good day! 

Sunday playfest

It lasted for nearly 3 hours in the morning, then after a quick lunch break and some haircuts for two of the kids, it was time to get back together and play again. Another 3.5 hours later, it was time for everyone to stop and have dinner. It was awesome! This is exactly what we want for our kids. Nat was out ALL DAY, out of our sight and just fine. She ran home to get water and use the bathroom and ran back out again. She had a grand time. They played made up games all day – they self regulated, they were kind and considerate, it was mostly all good stuff. Honestly, I think that all the kids are just happy to have kids around to play with! School isn’t out yet, so it’ll be a quiet week, but I’m hoping that everyone will be around for the summer.

We’ve also been chatting up more people as James hung out with the mayor, a high school guidance counselor, a retiree, and a substitute teacher. We’ve been meeting more and more people and we’re still getting used to the idea of leaving bikes in the yard for hours on end and being out of sight of our unlocked house.

It was a long winter, and I think that everyone is super happy to have lovely weather. I would have to agree! Now if only we can stop ourselves from obsessively checking on Nat to make sure all is well…..haha!

The Wrecking Crew

It’s been lovely out and everyone in our little subdivision is out every single day. The farmer’s markets are in full swing and although our initial plan this Sunday was to head to the Loyola Ecology Center and pick up some fresh produce, the kids in the ‘hood had other plans….plans that lasted for 2.5 hours…they slowly dispersed until it was just Nat and James playing ‘bakery’ over behind the mayor’s house. Here is the new wrecking crew (minus the only two boys – Jonny and Conrad):

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The games changed about a hundred times, but it was nice to just sit on our porch and watch from across the street…well except for the part where we took turns following Conrad around. He’s a bit too young to hang with the bigger kids, who range in age from five to ten. It’s a lot of fun to see Nat running around and laughing and having fun with some good kids.  Happy Memorial Day!

More art

This one is my favorite – Nat drew a present store and check out how she’s added to it! See if you can spot the dollhouse, the monster on skis, the Christmas ornaments, the paper bag puppet, the dancing wind up doll, and two pails.

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Art

I’m a big fan of making art accessible. It was clear that we needed an art table back in our lives…so I made one. It’s been a big hit.

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Nat made a lot of art in a short time! Here is a bunch of numbers – she was so proud of herself that she could write them up to 15! We didn’t even help her! Below the numbers is a bookshelf!

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This one is of Curious George, Belle (Beauty and the Beast) and the Man with the Yellow Hat (George’s friend). George is thinking (you can juuust make out the thought bubbles) about the girl in blue land!

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Here’s her pictures of a dog – the tag on the collar says 12, because the dog lives at 12, you see. It’s also saying, “wf”, because Nat sounded out woof and that’s what she got!

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Not to be forgotten, here is some Conrad art – he brought it to me and said, “Happy Birthday, mama!”, only not as clear as that….

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Art is how we teach colors around here and it’s such a natural way to do it! He knows: pink, blue, orange, white, black, green, purple, red and he’ll even sometimes tell us that it’s a ‘light’ color! The kids have also been riding their bikes a lot and Conrad can now pedal on his own! He still needs a push every now and then, but they are doing really great! Nat practices going downhill, doing crazy turns, and braking. We love that our neighborhood is so quiet and it’s a good way to practice street safety. I actually let Nat go out on her own (eek!) to ride her bike while I vacuumed and as a car came by (slowly, whew) she had already pulled way over to the curb just like we practiced! I was proud! Here’s our big girl, not posing at all! Haha….

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She’s excited to ride and even more excited that she’s old enough to head out on her own! Although obviously I’m out here taking pictures…haha….

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