Busy busy!

Last week was an adjustment for everyone! We don’t normally get up and go somewhere every day, least of all first thing in the morning, so that was new to us. It went pretty smoothly though, considering I have a few years under my belt of packing everyone up solo anyways. By the end of the first week, Natalie didn’t have tears at drop off and her teacher is fantastic and gets her involved in helping right away and Natalie really enjoys that. She’s learning the kids’ names and doing well with navigating the school routine. We hear that she really likes it and she only has positive things to say about it, so we’re really glad! Conrad LOVES school and would go every day if he could. I dropped him off on his first day, said goodbye and left and he didn’t bat an eyelash, so that’s great! Night and day, I tell ya.

Everyone is still getting over their colds – kids are still stuffy and Nat has a cough, but we got a lot of sleep over the weekend and everyone seems to be on the mend. It’s slow going, but that’s ok. We had a lovely visit from Aunt Lindsay over the weekend and played outside in the beautiful weather for hours.

Sunday saw us hit the Red Barn Market – which if you’re one of my parents, it was just like Kuipers – it’s a nice family owned farm stand that dresses itself up for Halloween. After our visit there, we raked leaves at the mayor’s house and spent a few hours jumping in them and tossing them around. Good stuff. I took some pics of our visit to Red Barn, which you’ll find below!

Happy Monday!!!

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School!

After a busy summer, socially speaking, where Natalie made leaps and bounds in her social confidence and with a lack of great homeschooling groups around here, we decided to enroll her in a preschool program. She started this past Monday and while she’s still adjusting, she declared today to be, ‘the best school day ever!’, so we’re feeling pretty positive about our decision. Her schedule will be to go five days a week, for only 2.5 hours each day, which is a perfect amount of time! This will help her with what we consider to be weaknesses for her: navigating classroom routines and social issues. The teachers are ridiculously friendly and kind and the kids have all been very welcoming. We’ll work on academic things at home to get her ready for first grade next fall.

We’ve also decided to enroll Conrad as well! He loves going there and his first day is tomorrow, which also happens to be picture day!! We’ve ordered pictures for all the grandparents, so you can relax.

We hit a pumpkin patch the other day and the kids had a blast! I only got a few pictures before the camera needed to be charged and shut off, but they are good ones.

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We picked up some pumpkins and emptied them out, which allowed Conrad to get stuck in a pumpkin….twice…..here is he happily sitting in it.

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Don’t worry, we got him out…though he was pretty stuck…..I’ll let everyone know how tomorrow goes!

Whew!

James has been back for a few days and we’re happy to be together again. The kids are happy, I’ve been able to sleep in, and I can post some pictures!

The day James left, we hit ‘Touch a Truck’ at Emricson Park. It was small and fun, though the horns are LOUD. We started off with a picnic lunch before heading on over to the trucks. We also took a break from the trucks and played at the playground and saw a helicopter take off!!

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Then we hit the playground!

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Bye bye helicopter!

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Saturday

James is leaving tomorrow for a business trip, so I’m not sure how much posting I’ll get done until he returns home late Wednesday night. I’m just not sure how things will go or how very tired I’ll be, dealing with two kids and two dogs. I’ll leave you with some pictures that I took earlier this week. 

Wait, this isn’t how you play basketball?!?

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September Already?

So here we are at Sept.  The start of the school year (at least as I know it; apparently a lot of schools are now starting in August), the transition from summer to fall, the grains of sand trickling through our hands…

Sorry, got a little caught up in very bad writing.  It’s actually quite easy to do.

Anyways, what has been going on with us…

As Julie has mentioned, I will be going on a business trip.  This will be the first time since very early in our marriage that Julie and I will be apart (not counting hospital trip for Conrad eviction), let alone apart from the kids.  It’ll be strange.  I’ll be going down to New Orleans for Cloud Partners 2014.  We’ve already got our plans worked out for how I’ll try to call in the evenings to speak to the kids.  Julie has also made it clear that I better bring some beignettes back home with me.

(As an aside, Natalie picked out some rockin dressy pink shorts for me, and I was hoping to wear them down there.  I’ll have to talk with my boss tomorrow to see just how dressy I should expect this to be.)

We also are considering enrolling Nat and Conrad in some sort of pre-school this fall.  We were originally planning on this January (even as of the last post) but after talking about it more, we think it might be good to start the transition process sooner if possible.  This would still be somewhere in the ballpark of 9-12 hours a week for Nat and much less for Conrad, so we think that this would be a good transition.

In regards to the building, we’ve received a somewhat lowball offer, so we have countered.  We’ll see what happens with that.  There hasn’t been much going on; there continue to be showings, but not many offers coming in.  We got somewhat excited by the initial offer we had gotten before, but it is possible(/likely) that we need to re-assess what the actual price in the market should be, and have appropriate expectations.  Regardless, we still hope to be able to sell this fall and not have the building going into the winter.  We’ll keep y’all in the loop.

This past weekend we made it over to Crystal Lake (which has the Target w/ my ab fab pink shorts) where we also hit “The Fresh Market”.  (Yes, I know that periods are supposed to go inside quotes, AND that parenthetical statements aren’t supposed to be in their own sentences; I won’t get into arguments about proper grammar here, but I’m more than willing to have that conversation in person.)  (Except, now that closing parenthesis looks odd without a period at the end… but it would essentially be a stand-alone period, since the rest of the sentence is all in parentheses… I think I need to review my rules of grammar.)

ANYWAYS, I lost track of the amount of sighs I heard from the mother of my children.  I took the kids and we wandered away a bit to allow someone to stroll the aisles at her own pace.  I’m sure that somebody will be going back there, with or without the rest of us.

We’ve also been working on anger as well as appropriate types of responses over here.  In order to be more accessible for my kids (you know, to show that I have faults as well), I’ve occasionally lost my temper at them.  We have had some decent conversations afterwards though, about how everybody, kids AND adults, always have things that we need to work on, and that we’ll always try to be better in how we behave and how we treat each other.

Hmm… I think I’ll leave it at that.  Telling y’all about how I yell at the kids… always end on a high note, right?