Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Caroline's New Do

Here's Caroline sporting her new haircut! She loves it!

A couple of weeks ago, she got a second haircut from a non-professional (read: a little girl). We debated whether we should layer it to mask the pieces that were missing, or if we should just cut it to mostly one length. We let Caroline decide, and she went with this short bob. She had a little buyer's remorse when she realized that she couldn't wear her hair in pigtails or a ponytail for a while. However, she quickly cheered up when we played hair salon tonight, trying a few new styles.

It was a big day for her...she was finally Fabulous Friend in her Kindergarten class. For all of you non-Kindergarteners, that means that she was able to share with her class something special to her (her pink dragon Webkin, pictured, that she got from her sweet friend, Claudia). She was also able to tell the class about some favorite things (book, colors, animals), share some pictures of her family, and she was also the teacher's helper for the day. This was a day that she has been anticipating for all year, so she was even more excited to go to school than she normally is! :)

We have been thrilled with her progress in school. It is an amazing thing to watch her learn how to read and write, and to see her excitement and pride in her accomplishments. Here's an example of her handiwork that she just brought home today...If you are having trouble reading it, you can click on the picture to make it bigger.

Monday, September 28, 2009

What Dave and I do on our nights out...

That man can dance!
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One down, two to go...

While my baby boy lay sleeping, all cuddled up under his blankets on this cold, blustery night...

...I was busy doing this to his closet. I took out all of the clothes that don't fit him anymore and hung up all of his fall clothes in the next size up. This is always a monumental, emotional task for me because as I'm packing away these clothes to be handed down to his younger cousin, I'm hit by how quickly Evan is growing. Sigh. And then when I hung up all of the fall clothes, I was flooded with memories of the older boys when they were this age.
And to think I have two more closets to tackle...I'm exhausted just thinking about it! This one's tomorrow. I think I'll go to bed now. I am going to need my rest. :)

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Sage advice from a six year old

When bowling, one should "throw the ball. You should not kick it." I would tend to agree with her on that one.
Caroline went to a birthday party for her friend Chloe today. Honestly, I don't think they could have been any cuter. What a party weekend they all have had!

While Caroline and I were at the party, Evan napped, and the big boys were building with legos. Yes, that would be Henry, Seth, AND their dad. They played all afternoon! I am always so amazed by what they are able to make.

Saturday, September 26, 2009

13 Giggly Girls...

...and one fun birthday party for Caroline! We celebrated at our favorite park,

had a yummy lunch together,
painted some pumpkins,
played a crazy game of Pass the Parcel,

pulverized a pinata, partook in some pumpkin cupcakes,

and thanked God that it didn't rain so that we could spend a fun afternoon with wonderful friends!

Friday, September 25, 2009

Rain, Rain, Go Away...

...at least between the hours of 12 and 2 tomorrow. Come to think of it, we really need it to stay at bay from about 8:00 AM on. I actually am saying some prayers.

Caroline's soccer pictures and game start at 8:00, and Henry is planting trees at a local park tomorrow morning with cub scouts.

We're having Caroline's friend party from 12 to 2. Because I was trying to be all economical :), I planned for it to be in our favorite park. We invited all of the girls in Caroline's kindergarten class, plus a few other friends, and I really would prefer to not have them all in our house. We scheduled a rain date, but Caroline would be so dissappointed if we couldn't have the party tomorrow. (The pumpkins shown above are the craft we are doing at the party...they each get to decorate a big and little pumpkin.)

I am not asking for much, just no rain tomorrow between 8 and 2. At 2:30, the skies can open up. I am fine with that.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Happy Birthday, Seth!

Eight years ago at this time, Seth was just about to be born. We've had almost eight years of being blessed with our son, Seth. We are so proud and happy to be his parents.

As we've already had his family party, today we celebrate with his favorite foods...cinnamon rolls and sausage for breakfast, and pizza for dinner. Then, we'll top it all off with some swimming lessons. (That's festive, huh?!) I think that we've finally picked a date for his "friend party." He wants to take his friends to the movies again this year. He was pushing for a big sleepover, but I'm not quite ready to go there with him yet. :) Maybe for his ninth birthday...

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Some more water for you

Apparently we Noseks are all about water, all the time. Or so you would think based on my last posts.

I had to post this picture of Evan and his swimming coach, Jeremy. Evan has never been afraid of the water, but he does have some separation anxiety issues. Looking at this picture shows how very far he's come from his first class, where he cried THE WHOLE TIME. He still is a bit anxious at the beginning of the lesson, but soon settles in with Jeremy. This big boy can blow bubbles, go under water, back float, and jump in the water. He is almost ready to be promoted to the next level! Go Evan!

We're expecting...baby platys any day now. :) One of the new fish we got today is pregnant, and the kids are so excited. We'll see how this goes.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Not to be outdone...

Caroline wanted to make sure I announced that she wants to be on a swim team too. Don't you think she's fast as well?! :)
Her coach said that she is a hard worker and has been learning quickly. We are so proud of her!

Monday, September 21, 2009

This boy is fast.

But in order to see said speed, you'll have to turn your computer monitor on its side. Or you could cock your head 90 degrees to the right.

I bet that there is some way to turn this video. I wish I knew. :( Sorry about that!

Anyways, Henry's coach says that he'll be ready for swim team next summer! :) Way to go, Henry!


...and off our driveway!


Our old purple van that adorned our driveway for the past 9 1/2 months is gone! And Sarah is happy!

To celebrate, I think we'll have to play a little basketball or get busy with some chalk.

I can't believe I'm blogging about this! Aren't you glad you checked in?!

Sunday, September 20, 2009

8 and 6

That's how old my September babies are. Ok, Seth is actually 7 years and 361 days old. So in 4 more days, we'll have an 8 year old.

We celebrated Seth and Caroline's birthdays with our extended family today. It's always so good to have everyone together!

The kids all helped to get ready for the party, from doing their regular chores, to extra cleaning and setting up, to decorating. Caroline was particularly fastidious on that job, and pretty much streamered everything...
...including her cousin, Nadia!

The kids chose their favorite clothes to wear for the party. Evan chose his Batman costume, of course.The adult table!

Here are the cousins all together, aside from Robbie. My little one year old nephew was a busy boy today!

Happy birthday, Kiddos! (Don't their faces look alike in these next two pictures?!)

Saturday, September 19, 2009


We are so proud of this young athlete! She made her first goal in a soccer game today! She came bursting into the house after her game, shouting, "Mommy, I SCORED A GOAL!," and when I saw her face, she was absolutely beaming! Her cousins, Anabel and Nadia, are soccer players too, and they are coming over tomorrow. She said that she can't wait to tell them!

Dave wasn't sure how she was going to do in soccer, mainly because she spent a lot of time in the first game and practice twirling and playing with grass. However, during the last two practices and this game, she has been more assertive, staying with the ball a lot more.


Wednesday, September 16, 2009


My mom, mother-in-law, and aunt have often advised me that I should write down memories about the kids. They are right. If I don't write about these sweet little stories, I am surprised how things I thought for sure I would remember start to fade.

So, I was looking at this picture of the boys tonight, and I was inspired to write a few random memories of the two of them. (This blog has been an excellent tool to capture memories!)

I remember when Seth was born how happy I was that Henry would have a brother. Henry shared in my excitement. :) When we pulled in the driveway bringing Seth home from the hospital, Henry was outside playing with his Aunt Debby and Great Grandma. I can still picture him running down the sidewalk yelling, "WHERE'S MY BABY SETH?! WHERE'S MY BABY SETH?!"

We brought him inside and Henry was so sweet and gentle checking out all his fingers and toes. He looked at all his bandaids, concerned that he had gotten shots, and then gave him lots of kisses. It was such a tender moment. I remember him looking at Seth, and then looking up at me saying, "I like my baby Seth."

I remember Henry spoon feeding applesauce to Seth, making such a mess, but so pleased and proud to be a big boy. I remember Henry's giggles when Seth kept babbling, "ba ba ba ba ba."

I remember a 3 year old Seth calling after a 5 1/2 year old Henry when Seth felt he rode too far away on his bike from him. "Henny, HENNY!"

I remember letting the boys have a sleepover in Henry's room when they were 6 and 4, and how they decided the next morning that they wanted to share a room. It has been sweet, most of the time :), listening to them talk before they go to bed at night. Oftentimes, they read books together before they go to bed, laughing at some poems in a Shel Silverstein book or poring over a dragon book.

Little moments in time...treasures in my mind...I love my boys!

Tuesday, September 15, 2009


I love him. Obviously, right?! But sometimes you can just tangibly feel in you chest just how much you love your children, like your heart might burst. And tonight was one of those times.

I don't know if I could specifically say what it was tonight...It was partly his sweet smile, and happy giggle as he was telling me about a funny story at school. It was partly his excitement and happiness at having made a new friend. It was partly my reflecting on how his responses to my questions may take some time but they are so often deep and spot-on. It was partly watching him come in and give Evan a kiss good night. It was partly just me looking at his sweet face, his greenish-blue eyes, and the curls on his head as I tucked him in to bed tonight.

I love him.

Monday, September 14, 2009

I love this...

When I was a Caroline's age, my best friend was a boy. Tim and I were in to climbing trees, playing in the mud, playing cowboys, spaceship, you name it...we really didn't have much use for dolls. I was definitely a tomboy.

Caroline, on the other hand, is a great mix of tomboy and girly-girl. She loves to get dirty, and wrestling with the boys, and playing superhero with Evan :), but she also loves wearing dresses and playing with dolls.

Caroline had her friend Elyse over today for a playdate, and they set up their own American Girl Cafe, and insisted on having a meal set for their dolls at lunch. They were kind enough to invite me to join in their fun, and I have to admit, I quite enjoyed myself! She has introduced me to a whole new world, and I love it!

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Yes, that's our daughter...

...the one with the mustache and the technicolor "chicken pox." She got this fabulous look at a neighborhood block party. We went for a few minutes just as it was closing down after we got back from our American Girl outing yesterday. I'm not sure who created this look, whether it was our sweet daughter, or if it was the 5th grader painting her face. Either way, she was quite happy to show off the results with her kindergarten friend, Meme.

Saturday, September 12, 2009

My American Girl Doll

What a day for Caroline! We met my mom and took the train to downtown Chicago to the American Girl doll store.

We had lunch in the cafe. Because we had not purchased her doll yet, they lent us one that she could put in a booster seat to eat right next to her.
Here's my mom and Caroline at our lunch.

All of the food was presented in such a fun way...Caroline's meal was in a picnic style, with a mini hot dog, a mini hamburger, a fruit skewer, and a mini serving of mac and cheese!

Here's Caroline's doll-on-loan eating her dessert.

Here's Caroline after she had decided which doll to get...a "Just Like You" doll that looked just like her!

Grandma and Caroline looking through the catalog to see what to put on her Christmas list!

On the way home, Caroline met some littl e girls who had just been to the American Girl Store. They played non-stop.

That's a happy girl!

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Last Pictures at the Lake in Summer 2009

The pier and boat lift are disassembled. The boat is in the garage. The beds are stripped. Summer 2009 at the lake has officially come to an end. :(

However, before we closed things up there, the kids had a final swim and boat ride. Here's some big news: Henry got up on waterskis for the first time!! He was thrilled. I think that we'll be spending a lot of time on the boat next year. :)

My brother-in-law snapped the traditional picture of the kids on the pier on Monday. Its fun to see how much they've grown from year to year.

He also helped Evan adorn his shirt with cicada shells. Evan was quite taken with the idea, and wore them around for a LONG time.

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Happy 6th birthday, sweet Caroline!

Pretty cool birthday date this year...9/9/09!

So, here's what happened 6 years ago today!

On 9/9/03, it was Henry's first day of preschool. It was a busy morning. We dropped Seth off at a friend's house, went to the grocery store, and then went to preschool. Parents stayed in the classroom for that first day, and that is actually when my contractions started!

Henry and I left a little early, picked up Seth, and we headed home to make some lunch. The contractions started getting a little stronger, but I can remember thinking that I had to finish lunch and get the kids down for a nap, and then I would call the doctor.

By the time I was done making PB&J's, I was fairly certain that I was in labor. My neighbor came over, and I drove myself to my doctor's office. After my doctor examined me, I half expected her to say that it was false labor, and that I should go home. Instead, she said that I needed to walk right over to the hospital next door and check in. I remember being a little disappointed because I wanted to drive over to the other hospital that offered massages, manicures and pedicures. Apparently there was no time. :)

Things went very quickly after that. While I was checking in, I was in hard labor. I called Dave, my mom and my sister, and was very worried that they wouldn't make it to the hospital in time. Thankfully, Dave and my mom were able to make it, and at 6:04, our little Caroline was born. My sister, Karen, arrived 5 minutes later, and was one of the first people to hold her God daughter.

My mother-in-law came to watch Henry and Seth as soon as she could, and the next day, they all came to the hospital to visit their new baby sister. My father-in-law, my dad, Dave's Grandma and his Aunt Debby also visited. When it was time for the kids to go home, they were very upset that they could not bring their baby home with them right then.

And now I've blinked and my baby girl is 6 years old. Crazy. :)

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

A Wedding at the Farm

On Sunday, we went to an astoundingly beautiful and charming wedding. The ceremony took place in front of the pond that the groom and his siblings and cousins swam in when they were growing up.

The wedding party was brought to the pond by a horse-drawn hay ride. It was available all afternoon and evening for the wedding guests to ride on the beautiful paths through the groom's parents' Christmas tree farm.
The bride and bridesmaids carried wildflowers from a friend's garden, and they all looked absolutely beautiful.

After the ceremony, the kids had a fabulous time playing with their cousins and friends. There were so many thoughtful and fun activities for them to do, including paddle boating, a bouncy house, dress up, coloring a playhouse, dancing, you name it.

The kids were even were provided with nets so that they could catch frogs...

...which they did!

There was a huge tent where we ate a most delicious meal of pulled pork, chicken, and ribs. Yum!

There was a sweet little gathering area outside of the barn...
and inside the barn, there was more food, live music, and plenty of dancing.
Here's the groom with some of his young fans. He's in a band called the Cash Box Kings, an up and coming blues band that has gotten rave reviews...click here to visit their website.
Congratulations, Joe and Kristina!

Any chance we could book our kids' weddings at the farm someday? :)