Monday, October 22, 2012

A Science Project

Isaac and Gideon has a lot of fun setting up this aeroponic gardening kit.  It was a gift from Grandma Doris, and it was so easy to assemble that the boys were able to do it without my help!  No dirt needed, and the lights and water sensors are all pre-programmed to tell us what to do.  Then they got the seeds planted, and now we just sit back and wait.  In a few weeks, we will have salad greens and herbs, fresh as can be, right on our kitchen counter.  Neat tie-in to Isaac's plant unit we just finished up for science!  (We also planted some seeds the traditional way to compare.)  We love science!

After one week:

After two weeks:

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Wynoochee Lake

We got some nice pictures of the kids 
on this lovely fall day at Wynoochee Lake!
Swimming and a picnic with Grandma and Grandpa 
was a lovely way to spend the day!

Grandma and Grandpa's poodle, Tasha
Grandpa Jan and his collie, Claire

I love the fall!  My parents were here for a far-too-brief visit this fall, and I was so happy that they were able to enjoy some better weather this time around.  

Their last visit lasted about seven months, and I think it rained the entire time.  I'm not really even kidding.  It was very dreary, from about October until April.  Gray with lots and lots of rain.  
We were so blessed that they were able and willing to give us so much help during that time, and endure the western Washington gloom and drizzle and mud.  They parked their 30-foot travel trailer next door to us and lived there (it is really very nice inside!) to help us out around the time of the adoption.  During our trips to Ukraine they came and lived with the kids, and the rest of the time they had their own private little home right next to ours, and helped out with babysitting and moral support.  
And then once we got all settled in with the boys, they were finally freed up to set off on some adventures of their own!  They are currently living in their travel trailer, traveling around the country and visiting some of the places they have always wanted to visit.  You can read more about their experiences here, at my mom's new blog.  Isn't technology amazing?  Feels like I am right there on their journey with them, and the kids can keep track of exactly where Grandma and Grandpa are and what they are doing, right here from our very own home.  Makes it feel like they are not really so far away, you know?  

Saturday, October 13, 2012

Another Milestone

Micah is feeding himself these days!!!

Look at my little southpaw, shoveling it in.  

It is messier, for sure, but that's just fine with me!  
I love seeing Micah trying new things, 
and doing things for himself.  
What a big boy he is getting to be!
This is the same boy who could only tolerate baby bottles of watery soup just seven months ago, and screamed in horror when presented with a spoon.  Look at him go now!

And that lovely meal he is enjoying is a combination of oatmeal, scrambled eggs, cream cheese, coconut oil, peaches, sweet potato, zucchini, spinach, and whole milk, with some honey drizzled on top and ginkgo biloba and massive doses of vitamins stirred in.  Pretty typical meal for Micah.  He will absolutely REFUSE to eat scrambled egg, or meat, or beans, or veggies, or fruits, or just about anything else, if it is presented on its own.  But when I puree those same foods and mix them in with oatmeal or yogurt, he eats them happily.  So I keep trying to convince him to eat them separately (they say it can take up to 15 exposures to a single food before a child decides he will eat it) but in the meantime, I ensure he gets a balanced diet, whether he knows it or not.  

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Double Digits

Somehow, don't ask me how, my firstborn son has suddenly become a big kid.  For years now, sweet, well-meaning ladies in the grocery store checkout lines have been telling me, "Oh, honey, the years are going to go by so fast."  To which I have responded by putting my hands over my ears and singing "LA LA LA I can't HEAR you!"  Well, okay, not really, but this is a fact that I am all too aware of, and not especially comfortable with.  I treasure each and every day with my kids as the gifts from God that they are, but still, here I am with a ten year old boy, asking myself, "Where in the world did the years go?  Where is my snuggly little pumpkin and who is this handsome young man?"  

Isaac, of course, is thrilled to have hit the double digits.  He has been so excited to turn ten years old!  He is not missing being a baby nearly as much as his mommy is.  And that is the way things are supposed to be.  

Grandpa Jan played "Happy Birthday" 
on his guitar for Isaac:

And Isaac enjoyed seeing what his siblings picked out for him:

 Then, after his family party, we had the friend party the following weekend.  Derek's mom and little sisters prepared some special music for Isaac, and (after a brief bout of stage fright) they did a fabulous job playing a song for him:
Then, at Isaac's request, we had an inventing party.  We spread out a bunch of junk on the table, along with duct tape and aluminum foil and other odds and ends, and let the kids loose to invent whatever cool thing they could think up.  The kids didn't need much encouraging:

 The finished inventions:

 Then we moved some furniture and turned down lights to create a movie theater atmosphere, and the kids ate all the popcorn they could eat while they watched one of Isaac's favorite movies with him:
If you have not seen "Meet the Robinsons," I highly recommend it.  It's about a kid growing up in an orphanage who wants to be adopted, which explains why I love it (obviously) and the kid, Lewis, is a super smart little guy who is always inventing amazing contraptions, which explains why Isaac loves it, and it involves traveling into the future in a time-machine jet, a pizza-delivery-rocket, and a crazy food fight, which explains why Josiah and Gideon love it.  And it is pretty hilarious and convoluted, and the first time through you might not fully get what is going on, but when it all comes together in the end, it is really neat.  

So anyway, Happy Birthday to my dear Isaac.  I am so happy to be his mom, and to spend my days with him and watch him grow up and learn new things and grow closer to the Lord and to his family.  I am so happy to watch him growing into himself, and figuring out who he is and where he is headed in life.  But still, I am just puzzling over how and when exactly he went from this:

to this: