Saturday, January 31, 2009

Henry Nosek: Future Paleontologist

What is one to do when you are stuck inside the house sick with the stomach flu, and you are bored with TV and video games? Well, if your name is Henry Nosek, you would build dinosaur models. That's our Henry, the boy who has already declared his career path in the field of dinosaur science (either that or the science of volcanoes, Volcanology, sp), or maybe a bit of both. He devours anything to do with those two subjects, and fancies himself a third-grade expert.

Last night Henry slept in our bed while he was sick. Dave slept in Henry's top bunk...what a sport! Anyways, when things calmed down a bit, Henry and I talked for a long time. Well, until I fell asleep. I think he was enjoying having Mom's full attention, and I was enjoying that one on one time as well. If there's a perk of being sick, that would be it.

He's recovering nicely from his bout with the stomach flu. And I do believe that Seth's case was just a false alarm. (Seth told us this morning that his stomach hurt, and with 2 sick kids in the house, we assumed the worst.) Nothing ever came of Seth's complaint, and he was eating quite normally from lunch on. Evan is doing very well as this is his fourth day since he came down with it. He was the biggest challenge...a two year old who is sick, but doesn't think he is and still wants to play. Thank God for hard floors! That's all I have to say. :)

And two more are down for the count...

Evan started the stomach flu here a couple of days ago...Henry just came down with it last night and Seth joined him this morning. The good thing is that it is the weekend, which means both Dave and I are home to take care of them, and they won't be missing too much school. That's all for now...I've got to get back to them. Poor kids. :(

Friday, January 30, 2009

She is a big girl!

Caroline is going to a birthday party tomorrow, and spent the afternoon today getting ready. She loves to write now, and is constantly asking me to help her spell words, even sounding out many herself. I am so proud of her, and just marvel at the process of a child becoming literate. She had the idea of decorating a purple gift bag for her friend with her puffy stickers. She was so pleased with the finished product that she wanted to keep it. I persuaded her to give it to Maddie tomorrow by telling her that she could take a picture of it that we could keep forever. :)

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Meditating on Seth

One of the reasons I have liked blogging so much is that it gives me an opportunity to meditate and think good thoughts about my kids, especially if we've had a rough day.

Today was a little "iffy" for Seth. He was a little tired and cranky (much like his mom), and truthfully tucking him into bed was kind of a welcome thing tonight. So that motivated me to focus on him in this post.

Seth...words to describe him (usually!)...sweet, gentle, reflective, analytical, loyal, endearing, hard-working, funny...I saw this picture tonight and it reminded me of one of my favorite moments with Seth.

We were at the lake. Dave was outside with the older kids and I was inside putting Evan down for a nap. Seth came to me and said, in his deep voice, "Umm...I've got something for you, Mom." He handed me a little doodle board. This was when he was just learning to write, and he was obviously so proud of himself. I looked down at the board and saw the words, "I lov Mom." He told me, " I wrote that myself!"

I am so proud of him, of how hard he works, and how far he's come. I love you too, Seth.

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

The boy has to earn his keep, doesn't he?!

My sister, Lisa, and I have had an ongoing conversation about encouraging chore responsibility in our children. She found some great chore charts, and made some up for each of her 4 children. She was telling me where she got them, and then joked that I would probably only have to prepare three as Evan is probably not doing too many chores yet.

Actually, Evan is mainly responsible for our "anti-chores" around here. Need a box of Cheerios dumped? Evan is your man. Do you prefer your rolls of toilet paper to be completely unrolled and on the floor? Again, Evan can handle that for you. Want to vacuum the living room? Oh, don't worry, Evan can do that and it will only take 5 times as long.

Did I mention recently that he's 2? Yup, and then some.

Monday, January 26, 2009

Caroline's First Friend Sleepover and her Favorite Socks

I honestly don't know how long its been since Caroline has been begging to have a sleepover at a friend's house, but she finally got her chance this past weekend when she slept over at her friend Maddie's house. They had been planning for it ever since they found out about a week ago. And did they ever fit a lot in! They did a little hairstyling and dress up, playing doctor with their stuffed animals and dolls, making cookies, washing dishes and sweeping (!) and watching "girly" movies. They had such fun that Caroline wanted to stay a second night! Should we be a little insecure about that? Does our daughter not miss us?! :)

My dad came over today to watch the kids for me while I ran some errands and got a hair cut. (Thank you SO MUCH, Dad!) The kids loved having him over. Evan, I believe, talked to his Grandpa non-stop (aside from his naptime), and Caroline drew a lot of pictures and played some games with Grandpa. My mom sent Caroline some special fuzzy socks...Caroline had admired a pair that my mom had given me, so her Grandma promised to find some for her. She delivered, and two pairs at that!! Grandpa brought them to Caroline today, and Caroline loved them so much that she went to bed with a pair on her feet and a pair on her hands!
Caroline modeling some clothes (and the bag) I got when I was out shopping for her today!

A close-up of Caroline's favorite socks!

Sunday, January 25, 2009

The Atomic Gumdrops!!

Today we went to a birthday party for our cousins, Charlie, Jamie and Jake. Their parents, Aaron and Mary Beth rented out a room in a Community Center where we had a great time dancing to a fabulous new "for kids" band called The Atomic Gumdrops. They had the kids play acting, dancing in trains, trying out instruments, and generally just having a ball.

In amongst many other kiddos, you Noseks might be able to spot Henry, Seth, Caroline, Charlie, Jamie, Jake, Anabel and Nadia. (Then again, you might just have to take my word for it as the clip is rather small and the kids are moving rather quickly!)

A Shout Out to One of Our Loyal (and Youngest) Readers

I'm posting a little late today...Dave and I got back late from our date night...we went to see The Curious Case of Benjamin Button, and wow, was that a LOOOONNNNGGGG movie (but very good!) Our babysitter, Kelsey, laughed at us because normally on our date nights we're back by about 10, but didn't make it home till midnight. Much past our bedtime.

Anyways, at the pinewood derby, I learned that one of Henry's best friends is a regular reader of our blog. And we think that's great. We love Dylan. Always have since "way back" when the boys met in Kindergarten. And take note of him...he'll either be either be a famous actor (he's already well-known in our area) or our president someday (he's already posted a petition to run in 2036, and is an expert on U.S. presidents.)

Hi, Dylan! (This picture was taken right after Henry went to see Dylan in one of his plays. Dylan played the part of Ralphie in The Christmas Story.)

Friday, January 23, 2009

The Pinewood Derby!

What an exciting night!!! The boys raced their cars that they made with their dad in the boy scouts' Pinewood Derby!

Seth's car raced first, placing two second and two first places in four heats. Overall, his car placed seventh out of about 40 cars for tiger cubs.

Henry's car placed 2nd, and then three 1st's in his 4 heats. Overall, he placed 6th out of 30 bear cubs. They both were sooooo excited!

Here's Henry winning 1st in one of his heats! Wish I had the same footage of Seth!

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Home Improvement and Sad Fish News

My parents had given Caroline a dollhouse last actually had belonged to my sisters and I when we were growing up. It was well-loved and in need of some home repair, and definitely needed some updating. So the mother and daughter designing duo started work on it today, in lieu of doing laundry. (All we have left to do on the outside is the shingles on the roof, which I had halfway done today, but I had to remove them because I messed up!) Having never refinished a dollhouse before, we didn't really know what we were doing. But in the end, our inexperience really didn't matter. She is happy, it is freshened up, and the yellow and green colors we chose go well with her pink room. :)

Next we tackle the inside. We have carpet, tile and wallpaper all picked out. WALLPAPER. Now that should be interesting.



On a sad note, we have one fish left. I am frustrated because I want this to be a good experience for the kids, and really have tried to follow the directions for the tank and the fish. I am unsure that if we started from scratch (emptying and cleaning the tank, setting it up again) as was suggested by the people at the pet store, would the same thing happen again? I know they are just fish, and my husband reminded me tonight that I might be getting too emotionally involved in them :) , but they are our kids' pets, and I want us to be responsible caretakers. Should we just scrap it and go for a different, easy-type first pet (ie, hamster, turtle) ? I would so appreciate any comments, on the blog, or email or phone!

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

A Fish Mission

Ugh...we had 3 fish die in 24 hours. We had some very sad kids here. Caroline was very of the fish that died was Evan's, and Caroline offered one of hers to Evan! Henry was especially upset about it, so I told him that he could come with me to Pet Smart to have the water tested and to get some fish advice. On the way there, we were talking about all kinds of things...Marley and Me, remembering funny things that our fish had done, having empathy with friends and family that have lost pets.

In talking to a lady a Pet Smart, it turned out that we had been overfeeding our fish and that the nitrate level was too high. His spirits really got a boost when he heard that we could correct the nitrate problem in the fish tank with some special solution, and perhaps save the rest of the fish. Henry wanted to buy the solution and get home as soon as possible to take care of our fish. He said that we were on a "Fish Mission," and was getting mad at every red stoplight! When we got home, the remaining 4 fish were still alive. (Thank God!) We doctored up the tank, and now are just crossing our fingers that they make it.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

I was just having one of those days...

I was feeling kind of tired, grumpy, and discouraged today. You know, I guess we all have those. Our house was messy, Evan was cranky, the kids were squirrelly, and I was not being as effective as I like to be as a mom. I just didn't feel like I had the resources today.

So we scrapped cleaning up, put Evan down for an early nap, and Caroline and I made Valentines. We had started them yesterday for Aunt Shirley, and decided to make a few for our window as well. They looked sweet, so that kind of cheered us up a bit.

Then we picked the older boys up from school, as well as a couple of their friends. Twenty minutes later, I received a call from our favorite babysitter. (Sadly, we had not had her come to watch the kids since last July.) She was calling because she thought that she was supposed to be watching my boys' friends, she hadn't seen them come home on the bus, and she was worried. She was calling to see if my kids were home yet. Apparently, she had not gotten the message that I was going to be watching the kids.

Anyways, I had to chuckle. I had been meaning to call our babysitter for a while now. Dave and I have been talking about how much we needed to get out together, that its crazy how long it had been since we had been out, just the two of us, but it was just one of those things that I was not getting done. (That list is quite long :) sometimes.) So, how funny! Kelsey, who we hadn't spoken to in ages, calls me up (albeit for a different reason). But seriously, don't you wonder if God sets these things up sometimes? Its goofy, I know. Like he doesn't have more important things to do. But it was like he might have been saying, "Sarah, if you don't call, I'll have her call you." So I said to Kelsey, "As long as I have you on the phone, could we set up a night for you to babysit?"

We are going out Saturday night. Wahoo!

Monday, January 19, 2009

Get well soon, Aunt Shirley!

I just heard that my Aunt Shirley fell and broke some ribs and her collar bone. She is doing well, and always seems to be in such good spirits. I suppose part of the reason is that she has so many wonderful friends from her church and in her neighborhood that care for her and love to dote on her, as well as a lot of family that love on her :). (She said that if there is a good part of being hurt, its that you see lots of people you love!) So today, we wanted to do some caring and doting on Aunt Shirley of our own. The kids and I made and delivered a little care package to her. We made her a little Valentine house for decoration and some hearts to hang in her window, as well as some super chocolaty cookies. Despite the fact that Evan was very busy exploring everything, we had a nice little visit.

Please say some prayers for her that she has a speedy recovery!

Sunday, January 18, 2009

Simplifying and Our Winter Sabbatical

I've always felt that I needed to have our children in many different activities, you know, to develop their potential and to find their talents and to keep them busy and to have something to do. Hence, I found myself last fall, as I have found myself many times as a mom, bringing our children to 3 library classes, boy scouts, swimming, dance class, playgroups...and then when I added in school, preschool, CCD, allergy shots, and volunteering in the kids' classrooms, we were NEVER home.

I think that it was at some point right before the holidays that I started feeling our family schedule closing in on us. I was behind with everything, always stressed out, and staying up too late. Henry said to me when I picked him up after school one day, "Mom, what are we doing today?" When I answered him, he said, "We don't get to stay home enough. I just want to play today."

That really hit home to me. He was right. We don't get to stay home enough. They needed some more free time (to blow bubbles :) and play dominoes, among other things). I needed some more time.

Thus, I came up with the idea of taking a winter sabbatical from activites. In theory, if the kids and I were home more, we would have more time to play, to choose, to bond with each other, to establish more efficient home routines and schedules, and to help out more.

My thinking was that we could temporarily drop out of most of our activities. We can always come back to things we miss. But maybe in the process I would regain some energy and sanity, the kids would have more play time, and we would all be happier.

So that's what we're doing, and I am really feeling a lot of peace about it. Granted, we couldn't drop some things (CCD and scouts), but for the most part, we are home. We have more time to get housework done, which is inspiring us to move on to bigger organizational projects (like the basement and Dave's office). We're doing things that we have wanted to do for years, but never had the energy or the time to do.

We'll see how it goes. We might all be driving each other crazy soon. ;) But for right now, the "simple life" is a really good thing.

Saturday, January 17, 2009

Family Game Night and What did you do, Seth?!

Tonight we got our littlest Nosek tucked in for the night and let the older ones stay up late with us to play Monopoly Jr. It was very spirited play, and sooo much fun. Poor Dave did not fare so well in the game. Caroline felt bad for him, and trying to make him feel better, she said, "Daddy's losing, but I still love him!" He might have lost all of his lemonade stands in this game, but at least he still has his daughter's love...

Seth was fingerprinted this morning! Seth had a cub scout outing to a local courthouse and jail. He loved it, but especially because he had his dad all to himself for the outing, lunch at Wendy's, and a trip to Menard's. He was one happy boy!

Friday, January 16, 2009

Yes, these kids know how things work around here.

Tonight, after we had applied the decals to the boys' pinewood derby cars, Henry said to me, "Mom, do you think you could take a picture of us with our cars and you could post it on the blog?" And imagine that, I already had the camera in hand.

So then I was reorganizing in the boys' shelves in their room tonight, and just happened upon something that I believe was TOP SECRET. (And now I am posting it on the blog, so don't tell anyone.) You see, Henry received a spy kit from his Uncle Mark and Aunt Nacibe for Christmas this year, and now most of my children fancy themselves superspies. Now any activity that I do is under secret surveillance and watched with intense interest. (I have been named a suspect, but I'm not sure of what.) Apparently, according to the SUPER SPY notes they've taken, I've been observed taking pictures (imagine that!), watching FOX news, taking care of a baby who screams SANTA (hee hee!, to see what I'm talking about, click on this post), and, my personal favorite, EATING GREEN BEANS. Wow, I hope that this information doesn't wind up in the wrong hands! (Click on the picture if you'd like a closer look.)

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Think the kids need to get outside?!

It is still so cold here!! The high was -10, and get this, the low was -27!!!!! (School was canceled today.) And with wind chill right now, it feels like -47. Apparently, because they can't get outside with this freezing weather, the kids need to expend a little energy inside by taking a few laps around the island. This is real life at the Nosek house. I have to admit it. Messy kitchen, crazy kids, my husband's joining in, and what am I doing? I'm recording it for the blog.

The kids are moving along nicely on their pinewood derby cars. They just painted them. The race is just 8 days away.

And of course, Miss Caroline can't be left out. She had to color pictures of her brothers' cars.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Be honest... many of you see that I videotaped my cleaned up basement and are thinking to yourself, "Oh my word, Sarah, GET A LIFE!!!" ? I agree, and I'll work on that someday. It was one of those things where I was doing it, but couldn't believe I was doing it. But I can't help it. I'm pretty proud of myself. Especially because I have one of these hanging around here...

Speaking of our two year old...he gave a shout out to Uncle Mark and Aunt Nacibe tonight. He grabbed a picture of them and said, "Ceebee, Mark," and then he kissed the picture! Now, before you two start getting big heads and all, just know that this is the same boy that will kiss the refrigerator when he is hungry. Not to minimize his love for you too much, which I know is strong. ;) And before all you other aunts and uncles start getting all jealous, just know that I will be placing your pictures at Evan's eye level as well so that they can get their fair share of Evan affection.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

It is 1 here. One. ONE. one. 1 degree.

Wow, do I miss summer!!! I miss flowers and no coats and the lake. How about some nice summer pics to warm us up?

On a happy note, I CONQUERED THE BASEMENT!!! Victory at last! The kids love it. Caroline said it rocked (where did she get that phrase?!) and that it wasn't scary anymore now that it is cleaned up. (I definitely agree with you on that one, Caroline!) Pictures to come tomorrow.

Monday, January 12, 2009

Fort Nosek(s)

I can remember building a huge bi-level snow fort with my younger brother when we were kids, and we named it Fort Ort (my maiden name was Orton). I have to admit, the fort that Dave built with the kids rivals that one. It has tunnels, windows and a slide. But then multiply that by three. Henry, Seth and Caroline each have their own. They were quite industrious.

Henry informed me when he got home from CCD tonight that they are going to have a snow day tomorrow, that school will be cancelled because we are due to get even more snow, high winds, and a sharp drop of temperature. Remind me...why is it that we live here?! I might have to post some summer pictures just to warm up a bit.

Dave and the kids by the biggest fort

Caroline's slide fort

Henry made this tunnel himself

Seth, aka The Snowman, needs a hot chocolate!!!

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Sledding with Dad

This would be how my husband broke his finger yesterday! Dave, Seth, and some neighborhood friends went sledding at the hill by their school, and Dave hurt his finger on one of the downhill runs. It swelled and became black and blue overnight, so Dave decided to head to the emergency room this morning. He's ok, but it makes it tough to work on those pinewood derby cars with the boys!

The following might be a live action shot of Dave's injury (footage and picture compliments of my friend, Jane!).

Saturday, January 10, 2009

Father and Son--1st Pinewood Derby Car

Its nice to have more company in the basement! Today, while Caroline and Henry were at birthday parties and Evan was napping, the rest of us went downstairs. Dave and Seth were working on their first pinewood derby car together. Seth has been very involved in the planning, from picking out the design, to drawing it on the car, to sawing and chiseling. Its great that Dave has gotten Seth so involved. He is very proud of his work, and it is coming along nicely.

I am moving right along on the organization in the basement. It is fun to see progress, especially since it has been so hard to get us to the point of letting some things go. I'm now at the point of working through some memorabilia boxes, and I was very much feeling sentimental as I was looking at the ways our family has grown, from starting out as a couple to having our fourth child. All in the space of 11 years! Its been fun to look back, but I really do want it all to slow down. I guess that everyone says that, but it really hits home when you see all the pictures at once, remembering all the stories. We've been blessed.

Our cuddlebug and his very tolerant oldest brother. Whenever Evan sees anyone laying on the couch, he takes it as an invitation to climb all over them, cuddle, and more often than not, a little bit of both.

Friday, January 9, 2009

We wish you a merry Christmas...again!

Technology...I love it, but can't always make sense of it.

We went to Caroline's Christmas program today. Yes, today. Her program before Christmas was cancelled due to weather. So we were celebrating Christmas still today on January 9. :) It was such a sweet program, and the kids were so excited and proud. One of the things that I will remember was Caroline walking out to the program with her class. All of the children were walking in a line, looking for their families in the audience. How sweet and beautiful she looked when her eyes found Grandpa Orton, Evan and I.

That was the moment that I wanted to share on the blog. However, I forgot my memory card for my camera, so I was using our video camera to record. I can't figure out how to select the footage I want from the video camera. Grrr. Oh well. We'll just wish you a merry Christmas once again (I think this is Caroline's third serenade of you with this song!) with the video footage that I did manage to post! :)

Thursday, January 8, 2009

My New Year's Resolution

You are looking at it. Actually, the sad thing is, you are really looking at only part of it. There is much, much more where that came from.

I promised myself that I would organize the basement, including throwing things away and donating to AmVets. To make it happen, while the boys and Caroline are at school, Evan and I are down there the whole time. And then, when Evan naps, Caroline and I work down there. And then in the evening, when the kids are tucked in bed, and after I blog a bit, I head down there again. So basically, I am living down there right now. :)

I am actually pretty excited about this. It is so good to finally be at the point where I am pushing past being overwhelmed, and I am gritting my teeth and diving in and gaining momentum. I do like to be organized and know where things are, and I LOVE seeing a project through to completion. It is feeling good to only keep what we use. I am so looking forward to a basement with a clear floor and an organized storeroom where if I need something, I know where it is and can pull it out right away.

So, within the month, I'll post another picture of our organized basement. (Bet you can't wait!) There, I wrote it and put it out there. You can hold me to it!

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Just like the big kids!

Our young Evan likes to run with the big dogs. High chairs? He much prefers a standard chair. Want some help, Evan? No, he wants to do it himself. He wants to do everything just like his older siblings.

He's carried this attitude to when I drop Caroline off at preschool. Just like all of those big kids there, Evan has to take off his boots, his hat, his mittens and his jacket, and put them in a cubby or on a hook. He wants to do this each time, and for the fact that he is a bit shorter than the typical preschooler, all this work takes a while. This video is a condensed version of what he normally does lately...he's just putting his hat in a cubby. But it shows how very steadfast and committed he is to his goal, God love him. And he's so proud of himself. Take a look at that smile at the end! After all that hard work, I'd like to say that his sweet sister didn't undo it in a flash, but I can't. Poor Evan!

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Now, that's a snowman!

My husband has a penchant for building rather large snowmen. However, so far this year he has been denied the opportunity. We've had a lot of snow, but it has never been the right type at the right time. He (and the kids!) have been anxiously waiting for the chance to build this year's big one.

The snowman pictured is last year's. They were very creative in their styling of the snowman. He wore a bushel basket hat, training wheels for eyes, a plastic bat for a nose, the head of a pushbroom for a mouth, and plastic drainage pipes for arms. The kids were so proud...a picture of it actually made it into our local newspaper. We would sit at our front window and watch cars slow down as they passed, with some people even getting out to take a picture!
And here's my peanut's sweet, little snowman that she made all by herself. :)

Monday, January 5, 2009

Future Preschool Teacher

My daughter spent the better part of the afternoon being Mrs. Rickel (her preschool teacher). I was Mrs. Herra, her assistant teacher. Her stuffed animals were her students, and she set them up around her rug (pink blanket), read them her favorite story (Pinkalicious), gave them a snack, assisted bathroom breaks (!), and even explained an art project. Maybe she'll follow in her mother's footsteps and be a teacher when she grows up...

That'll be in addition to her other plans of being a doctor, and artist, a pet shop owner, and an ambulance driver. She'll be a busy woman.

Sunday, January 4, 2009

Our day started at about 4:30...

Yesterday, the boys exchanged one of their Christmas gifts that broke for some Bakugan game pieces. Henry said that he was too excited to sleep last night, and couldn't wait until the next day so that he and Seth could play with them. They were also too excited about the five new fish that we added to the aquarium yesterday. The boys asked if Caroline could sleep in their room last night, and there was a lot of fish and Bakugan talk before they actually fell asleep.

Well, true to his word, Henry couldn't wait for the next day. He woke up at 4:30 worrying about the fish. I went to check on them (they were fine), and I heard Seth and Caroling up and talking. Henry came back to the room, and the kids actually asked me if they could stay up and play Bakugan. Amazing that they even tried that one!

Needless to say, they were a bit tired today. They actually all fell asleep at the same time for a nap in the afternoon (MIRACLE OF MIRACLES!), which was lovely. They were all refreshed for ice skating on the pond with their daddy and Uncle Bill.

Saturday, January 3, 2009

Our Newest Pets

As you might recall, the kids' first "pets" were their caterpillars they caught this fall. Ever since we had to let them go, the kids (especially Caroline) have been asking to have their own pets. With our house being as busy as it is, Dave and I thought that we might be able to handle fish. So we gave the kids a 10 gallon aquarium for Christmas. We set it up in their bathroom, and have had a fun time decorating it with plants, driftwood and rocks.

They each got to choose 1 platy and one guppy, so now we are the proud owners of 8 fish. Henry has Scuba-Doo and Tux, Caroline has Swishy the Fishy (the second) and Speedy, Evan has Bubbles and Jaws, and Seth has Frisky and Jason. (You've got to love Seth's taste in names...Remember, he was the one that wanted to name his baby brother Fluffy.)

You might have seen that one of Caroline's fish is a second. Unfortunately, Caroline's first fish died a few days ago. We gave Swishy the first a proper "flushing to the sea" burial. After some tears, we decided to draw some pictures of Swishy to put next to the aquarium so that the other fish wouldn't be lonely for her :). She then wanted to write a letter to Swishy, which we did. She ran upstairs with her artwork, but a couple of minutes later, I heard her crying again. I ran upstairs to see what happened. "What's wrong, Caroline?," I asked. "I can't send the letters to Swishy! It won't flush!" Yeah, our toilet was a bit clogged with Caroline's correspondence with her fish.

Friday, January 2, 2009

More cousin fun!

So, my nieces and my brother slept over at our house last night. We had two days full of Wii, doll houses and dolls, Bakugan (a cool new game my nephew taught the kids), nerf basketball, wrestling, and in general, a lot of cousin revelry.

They woke up early (well, you know, they had a lot of playing to do!), had some cinnamon rolls, and then Dave and my brother, Bill, took them out for a little nature hike to the woods and pond behind our house. I was all excited to send Dave out with our camera to get lots of good pictures of them, but unfortunately sent him with dead batteries. He was only able to take one picture, obviously not of the kids, but beautiful nonetheless!
The following picture is us trying to squeeze in as much as possible to the time you have with your visiting nieces...We're making gumdrop Christmas trees (Thanks for the fun activity, Grandma!). Evan just finished a fabulous lunch of hot dogs and ketchup (still on the table), and he was doing his best to get his fair share of gumdrops. We were watching some funny videos on YouTube, and some of them were playing Wii golf as well. Ohhhh, we miss them already!