Tuesday, May 31, 2016

Snapshot: April/May 2016

Starting . . . Reading lists for the kids for the summer. I currently have about 25 books for each kid. Camden will burn through this list in 2-3 weeks. Rory will probably take all summer. Not because she isn't a good reader, but she tends toward lower level reading with girl themes . . . and I didn't pick anything like that out for her. And sixth grade = middle school. Need I say more?
*if anyone wants a copy, send me an email camdensmommy at gmail dot com

Finishing . . . grades 3 and 6. I would say these were tough grades from a social standpoint for both kids. Middle school is kind of the worst, and third grade girls are full of drama. Rory is full of drama. We're trying hard to teach that kindness and compassion are more important than popularity.

Admitting . . . summer break is my least favorite season. Social media tells us summer break is all rainbows and unicorns and magic. Finding childcare, balancing the fun with the boredom, constantly changing media limits, and playing referee to arguing siblings seems a little more like it.

Reading . . . all the books. Here are just a few highlights:
  • Five Days at Memorial: Life and Death in a Storm-Ravaged Hospital - this was an incredibly sad and eye-opening recount of Hurricane Katrina. Reading the first 100 pages during a crazy thunderstorm definitely added drama.
  • The Knockoff - I burned through this book in one weekend. Lots of pop culture references and a very fun read.
  • Fool Me Once - Harlan Coben is always good for a page turner.
  • Salt to the Sea - WWI YA novel that was sad and inspiring.
  • I have Eligible and The City of Mirrors ready to pick up from the library, and I'm excited about both of them.
  • Rory is reading Kat, Incorrigible series by Stephanie Burgis
  • Camden is reading lots, but he just finished So This Is How It Ends by Tui Sutherland; he also recently read Unbroken and loved it.
Listening . . . currently on the search for new music. Nothing seems to interesting right now.
  • Interrupted audio book by Jen Hatmaker (I liked this one enough that I'm asking Brian to read it.)
  • For the Love audio book by Jen Hatmaker, also narrated by Jen Hatmaker so it's kind of the best
  • Sorta Awesome Ep. 59 (Crushing misconceptions about homelessness) - this one provided much food for thought
  • The Simple Show Ep. 28 (Fighting ISIS with Soap) - also thought-provoking
Watching . . . the NBA play-offs. Brian sleeps through them while Camden talks through them. I just try to remain sane.
    Anticipating . . . my trip to NYC with my mom and sisters. Seriously cannot overstate how excited I am about this. We're down to two more sleeps in kid terms.

    Laughing . . . because why wouldn't you wash the deck with car sponges and Windex?

    Also laughing . . . Rory wants the Golden State Warriors to win because Lebron James plays on that team. When I informed her he actually doesn't play for GSW, she decided she wanted the Tornadoes to win. And by Tornadoes, she means OKC Thunder.

    Feeling . . . #unashamed. A by-product of the Colton Dixon/Building 429 concert we attended recently. He is disappointed no one has asked him what it meant because he was prepared to explain.

    Celebrating . . . Memorial Day with friends and family and our 19th wedding anniversary (totally didn't realize it was 19 until Brian posted on FB).



    Photos . . . 


    Still playing with army men. I'm wondering how much longer this will last.

    Final sixth grade project (waited until the last minute to finish, of course).

    Could he be any bigger?

    Friday, May 27, 2016

    Third Grade is in the Books

    Notice the blue lips. She is not cheerful at all.







    No pictures of the last day of 6th grade because, well, middle school.

    Thursday, May 26, 2016


    "Play is the work of a child." -Maria Montessori





    When we were scrolling through these pictures, he was showing me the different pitches based on how he's holding the ball. I had no idea!


    They were taking turns being the princess and bowing before the prince, but got self-conscious every time I turned the camera their way.

    She is not as sad as she looks.










    My favoriteDSC_7024

    Monday, May 23, 2016

    Five on Friday (May 20)

    (let's just go ahead and pretend I posted this on Friday)

    1. We had a Saturday afternoon to ourselves so we visited a nearby park that was part of the Trail of Tears. I've never felt more like a parent as we tried to tell them the story of the Trail of Tears and make this long random stretch of woods with no landmarks seem interesting.







    2. We've had an extra girl around our house this week. I've let Rory take over the mothering, and she kind of loves it. Pictures from this will have to reside in their own post because I overdid the picture taking, of course.


    3. The life of a baseball family continues (it's all over next week) and we have lost a whole bunch of games in the last couple of weeks. As in, all of them. Still fun to watch (and Camden has pitched some great games - he recently pitched 65 balls and 51 were strikes), but it sure would be nice to win our last game or two.

    4. I gave away all my cancer scarves to a new friend who has breast cancer. It was odd to pull out the rubbermaid. That rubbermaid has traveled with us through two moves and has occupied a space in the furthest corner of the garage. I was amazed as I pulled out those scarves and remembered so many good times. I remember when my hair started growing back; I could not get pack those scarves away fast enough, but over the years I've had difficulty getting rid of them. It somehow felt if I put them behind me for good that I would be jinxing myself. But I washed those scarves, folded them, and delivered a big bag full to Stacy and all I felt was glad that I could pass them on.

    5. Rory performed in her second piano recital Sunday. We have transitioned from the over-achieving parent whose intelligence and sense of accomplishment rests in their children's performance to the casual parent who barely shows up on time and feels no sense of pressure or expectation of perfection. I kind of like myself as the second parent better.

    Thursday, May 19, 2016

    The Green Machine

    "If this bike weren't pink, it'd be perfect." -Camden

    (One of Brian's garage sale purchases. Turns out, he's right on these garage sales . . . sometimes. And check out those short pants. Good thing it's the end of the school year.)





    Friday, May 13, 2016

    Five on Friday

    I missed last week so I guess I have two weeks to catch up on . . .

    1. No blog post last Friday because my computer crashed. Ugh. However, it's running fast and smooth with its new solid state drive so maybe that situation didn't turn out so badly. And as a result of losing the majority of my programs, I've finally upgraded to Photoshop CC (which I've had access to 2 years now). There is a serious learning curve, but it's kind of fun to learn something new. Well, fun after it's learned anyway.

    2. I also missed last Friday's post because after Bible study Friday morning, Rory and I made a blink-and-you'll-miss-it trip to Missouri to visit with my parents and both sets of grandparents.

    3. Evenings have been consumed with baseball, but I'm soaking it all up since this is Camden's last year of Little League. There is something just so adorable and quintessentially American about a baseball field full of boys (even the not-so-little ones) in the spring. We have even been watching MLB games on TV, and that is certainly something I could have never imagined myself doing. Prior to having a baseball player in the house, I pretty much hated baseball. Camden's team has had a major series of ups and down (they won 22-3 last weekend, but have lost everything since).

    4. Camden only has THREE days left of school. Sixth grade has flown by. I am completely gobsmacked by the passage of time since Christmas. I look at the calendar every few days and just feel shocked at the date.

    5. Rory burned her way through the first 3 Harry Potter books in the past 10 days. While I have read them aloud to the kids over the years, she hasn't always been very interested. Not sure what prompted her to start, but she has been reading non-stop.