Friday, October 19, 2012

Friday was a busy day for us around here.  Not only did we have the Fun Run, we also had our very first Girl Scout Campout as a whole troop.  I had seven little brownies camping in my backyard!  It turned out to be so much fun and the girls did great!  We made mini pizzas for dinner.  Each girl brought their favorite topping to share.  We showed how we are each unique, but we come together to make something wonderful!

After dinner we made Sharpie Tie Dyed shirts.  I found the idea on Pinterest and it is much less messy!
After shirts, we divided into two groups and had the girls do skits based on part of the Girl Scout Law combined with random props that Kirsten pulled from her playroom.

 After the skits, it was time for s'mores and songs - the best part of any campout.
 The girls were great about getting ready for bed, we read them two stories, and tucked them in.  I think that having the fun run earlier that day contributed greatly to their willingness to sleep!
 The girls got up about 7 on Saturday morning and we made pancakes for breakfast.
 We spent the rest of the morning doing science experiments.  We made rock candy, soda bottle rockets with mentos, did a density test, and made salt and pepper dance with a balloon.
The favorite of the day was the dinosaur snot! (cornstarch, water and food coloring)
 I think they played with it for almost 30 minutes!
 Then the girls cleaned up and headed home.  I was so proud of how independent they were - washing their own dishes, getting themselves set up and cleaned up.  It made me more optimistic about taking them two hours away in the spring.  Of course, I had wonderful moms who stayed the night and sacrificed sleep and comfort to make it all go well.  By the end of the campout the girls had earned two badges and did some great work towards their Journey Badge.  It was such a fun campout!

Fun Run

This year, instead of selling cookie dough for a fundraiser, Kirsten's school had a fun run.  The kids asked for per-lap donations and then last Friday they had their fun run.   The kids were so pumped up to get out and run.  I thought they were going to be worn out before they even started running!

And they're off!
  I have never seen anyone so happy to be running!
 The Principal, Ms Tinsley even got in on the action during the skipping lap.
  Kirsten's teacher, Ms Olson also got out and ran with the kids.
 Katie and I had fun lining up with the other moms and cheering everyone on.  After about 20 minutes though, Katie really wanted to get out there too.  Kirsten was so obliging and took her sister around for a few laps with her.
 In the end, Kirsten ran 32 laps in 30 minutes.  I was so proud of her.
It was such a wonderful, positive, and uplifting experience for the kids.  All about staying active, making positive choices, and supporting one another.  She definitely accomplished all that and more!  Way to go Kirsten!

Friday, October 12, 2012

Our State Fair is a Great State Fair!

On Monday, the girls were out of school and Jeremy was off of work.  We decided to spend the day at the Texas State Fair.  This is big for us because we have only been one other time, and it was a nightmare.  Jeremy's mom and sister Megan went with us too.  We were determined to make this year better, starting by taking the train down.  It was Kirsten and Katie's first time on a train, and they loved it!

 We packed all of our own food and drinks to avoid fair food and found a bench for a picnic lunch.
 The main reason we wanted to go was for this
 This year is the 100th Anniversary of Girl Scouts and there was a huge exhibit is the Hall of State dedicated to Girl Scout History.
Do you see that Brownie Uniform on the right?  That is what I wore as a Brownie.  I did not realize I was old enough to have things that I wore as a kid be part of a history exhibit!
 There were interactive exhibits as well that Kirsten loved.

  The theme for the Year of the Girl is "Be There So She Can Be Here."  They had a photo booth where they took the girls' pictures and put them in backgrounds that the girls chose.  Kirsten aspires to be a Presidential Candidate.
 And Katie wants to be Chairman of the Board.
We also enjoyed the Dog  Shows.

 The park was not nearly as crowded as last time we went and so we were able to do so much more because of the shorter lines.
 We loved being able to visit Little Hands on the Farm again, and it was fun having Megan join us!
 My Little Farm Girls!
 They received feed for the animals, watered trees and picked peaches.
 They also milked and fed a cow, and fed chickens and collected eggs.
 They loved being able to plant seeds to grow a garden,
Although Katie insisted on putting the dirt in the cup with her seed instead of the seed into the dirt.  Hey, whatever works!

 Katie even got to drive a tractor - Kirsten was too big!
 We also enjoyed the craft exhibits, a sculpture made out of butter, and the lego contest winners.
 The highlight for me was being able to see the Marine Drum and Bugle Corps performance.  Katie alternated between dancing along and conducting the music.
 We spent some time looking at cars as well.  I have to say that this one was my favorite!  Do you think I can get one of these?
Our one fair foods splurge were the Fried Samoa Girl Scout Cookies.  They were unbelievable!
 I think that having Grandma and Megan there made it that much more fun.  The girls sure love them!
 We ended the day with seeing Bridgit Mendler in concert.  In case you don't know, she is Teddy from Good Luck Charlie on the Disney Channel.  Kirsten is completely in love with her music and was so surprised when we told her we would see her.

We staked out a good spot on a wall where we could climb up and see over the sea of people.  Here are Kirsten and Megan waiting for the concert to start.
  Jeremy was a great sport and put Kirsten up on his shoulders.  When Bridgit came out, she said she had never seen so many tall little girls!  I held Katie and we were all able to see and loved the music.  Katie kept clapping along over her head.
 I circled Bridgit in red on the the left of the stage!
Kirsten thoroughly enjoyed her first rock concert!
We caught the train home and then stopped at In n Out for dinner on the way home.  Megan and Grandma had never been!  Overall, we had a wonderful day at the fair.  We may even try it again someday!

Thursday, October 4, 2012

Balancing

Life seems to have become quite the balancing act around here.  Jeremy's job is going very well, but is also very busy.  We have gone from having daddy home every night between 5 and 5:30 to him working between 65 to 80 hours a week and most of the weekends.  The past few weeks have been an adjustment period for all of us.  We are learning though, and staying as busy as ever.

Katie is loving her dance class.  She is also learning how to tumble and can do a somersault all by herself.
Thursdays have turned into our picnic and movie night.  I let Kirsten pick what we eat and we have a picnic in the living room.
 Katie gets to pick the movie and we all snuggle in my quilt.
 Katie is growing up and learning more everyday.  She is completely obsessed with books.  She always has several with her.  She is also obsessed with Princesses.  Her favorite is Cinderella, and sleeps with the Cinderella book.  She thinks that every prince is daddy.

Katie has also learned how to ride her scooter.  We try to spend time every day after school outside riding, especially now that it is finally cooling off. 


 Kirsten is such a wonderful big sister and is so patient in teaching her sister.  They love to ride side by side.
 We also got Kirsten a new bike last week.  She has grown so much that her other one was just way too small.  She is so excited to have a bike with 6 speeds and hand breaks, and keeps asking when she can go ride it on mountains since it is a mountain bike.  We have been riding bikes to and from school this week again since it is under 100 degrees finally.  It is a great workout doing it two times a day pulling Katie behind me in her trailer.
 Kirsten is also doing really well at school.  They got progress reports last week, it is her first one ever as they just started doing actual grades this year.  She had a 96 in Math, 96 in Language Arts and Spelling, 100 in Social Studies, 99 in Science and 99 in Reading.  Her teacher told her she had the highest grades in the class.  We are still getting used to daily homework, but I am so proud of her for working so hard and applying herself at school.  She is also taking two ballet classes now, and doing so well with her dancing.

As for me, I am trying to balance everything and maintain my sanity.  I have 25 students this year and will probably end up with a few more at the middle school.  I am also still the Organizer for our neighborhood Mom's Group, the Girl Scout Troop Leader, Room Mom for Kirsten's class, teaching Gospel Essentials on Sundays, and basically being a single mom Mon-Fri now.  My saving grace is my gym time.  I know that every morning I will have an hour to myself with no distractions.  I cannot stress how important that time is for me both physically and mentally, and I highly recommend it to every mom out there.

We are figuring out that Jeremy's job will be slow the first two weeks of each month and insane the last two. So we are trying to capitalize on our time together these two weeks before things get crazy.  So it has been difficult, but we are adapting and cherishing what time we do have together.