Saturday, October 31, 2009

In progress.

Three Halloween costumes.

Two straight days of sewing. Two costumes are almost done, one is being cut out.

The girls have been playing their own games around me - and with me when I take much-needed breaks. I went tearing up the stairs yesterday when I heard Ains yelling 'MOTHER!!!' and was told that she was just yelling for her bunny's mother and "You go work on my dress". Nice.

Gray's not at the independent play age, so he's with me.

Yeah, he's right here with me.

Seven hours to go ...

Monday, October 19, 2009

Friday, October 16, 2009

Dancing with the stars.

Dance shows are a big part of our lives these days - easily three shows in the evening every week. And three shows means hours and hours of practice, dress rehearsal, costume design ... you get the drift.

It's the highlight of my husband's day, watching these shows - and with good reason. They're hilarious.

The routines consist of the girls singing songs that they're making up on the spot while they dance. They can get very active ...

and very expressive.
I think in that picture Hannah was singing about planting, watering, and harvesting plants but not letting Colorado Potato beetles get them, after which she launched into a medley of ABBA songs. Her shows are usually about seven minutes (of non-stop flow-of-conciousness singing).

Then this one starts in.

She just likes having a captive audience.

On the night I took these pictures, I started timing her performance when I realized it had been going on awhile. Seventeen minutes later, she was still going.

Talk about flow-of-consciousness singing. We got to hear about her kitties, her dog, her brother, her baby dolls ... and fudge chocolate chip cookies. No idea where that came from which is probably why it made her dad laugh so hard when she threw it into her routine. And that made her giggle.

And after that, anytime she needed to liven things up, she'd randomly throw out 'fudge chockut chip cookie' and promptly dissolve into giggles.

Dancing with the stars in our own home.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Movin' right along.

Ainsley woke up yesterday, walked into the bathroom I was cleaning and said "Get eawings today."

I wasn't expecting this girl to want earrings until she was eight years old, so she caught me by surprise. "You want to get your ears pierced today?" I asked. "Yes."

"You're sure? It hurts a bit. A bit worse that this..." and I pinched her ear a bit. That's always stopped her in her tracks on the few other times she's thought about it. "Yes. Eawings today."

"We're going to town today, so we can do that if you want. It hurts though. More like this..." and I used my nail to pinch her ear a tiny bit harder. "OW!!!" She glared at me. "Get eawings today." So we went to the mall.

When we got to the store, I double(triple?)-checked with her and then handed her the box of starter earrings to choose from.

She chose the rainbow flowers.

She sat really still while the dots got marked on her ears.

And really still while the ladies pierced them.

And immediately after they were pierced, she covered both her ears with her chubby little hands and yelled "OWWWW!!!" I could see her fighting back tears, so I said "Do you have a mirror? Quick!" They had a mirror handy.

Then she went back to this.

Then the mirror, then the hands again.

Today we've washed and turned them and she says they don't hurt. It completely changes the look of her.

At least to me.

Monday, October 12, 2009

About that piano ...

My grandma was looking for someone in the family to take her piano and promise to keep it in the family. I've been looking for a piano for around eight years. It was a good match.

My grandma is 92 years old and her mother got this piano, used, right before my grandma was born.

The problem, once the 'who' had been solved, became 'how'. My grandma and grandpa had moved this piano from Wyoming to their house in Idaho while the house was being built. The room it was in had literally been built around the piano and they'd never planned to move the piano.

Matt took the door frame off of the piano room and it barely squeaked through that door, but then this happened.

Yeah. That.

Turns out that he had to take the door frame off of the closet across the hall. That gave us enough room to get it out of the room with 1/8 of an inch of clearance. Once it was in the hall, it was nearly smooth sailing.

To get it out to the truch, the garage door had to be held open by someone standing in the bathroom - which was me.

"Don't worry," my dad said. "You have running water and a toilet." Har de har har.

Some of my dad's neighbors came over to lift the very solidly made piano.

My dad supervised.

That was a heavy piano.

So now it's home, along with some sheet music that my grandmother insisted came with the piano and is nearly as old as it.

I'm so happy to finally have a piano in my home.

I'll never play Flight of the Bumblebee as well as my mom, but I hope my kids will associate music with their childhood nonetheless.

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Wednesday, October 7, 2009


We took our visitors back home today. It's been nearly a week of daily tea parties.

My girls will miss those cousins.

But we get to stay a few days with them at their house. And their mom is *fun*. When she was visiting at our house last week before she left some of her kids with us for a few days, she did some experiments with my girls.

She got them to drop mentos into pop bottles,

which was exciting.

She explained acidity to them.

She sent Hannah on a scavenger hunt around the kitchen to find liquids to test for acidity or baseness.

I'm hoping Hannah doesn't drive her crazy here at her house with requests for more experiments. So far she's settled for telling her lots of stories. (She told her tonight that in her dreams she's a Professional. "Of what?" A Professional Thinker of Words.)

The cousins are glad to be home, but they're missing the little things about farm life.

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Soaking in our visitors.

My cousin came to visit us last week and when she left a few days later, she let us keep a few of her kids for a few more days. We'll be taking them home tomorrow, but the kids and I are loving having the company.

Yesterday was snowy still. I thought it would melt quickly as most early snowstorms do, but it's stuck around for two days. It should be all gone by tomorrow.

But yesterday there were snow angels to make.

In the first week of October, in case you needed to be reminded.

There were snow pies to be made and cut up.

And pony rides, of course.

Today there was an art project (I'll post about it later), and sewing, and lots of checking on eggs.

There was homemade ice-cream which was a hit. Even with the cool kid.

Who has declared that he shall go by 'Andrew' on this blog. So meet Andrew.

There was lots of dress-up.

Then a four-wheeler ride and lots more cousin play. Long, full days.

Monday, October 5, 2009

Keeping busy.

We have two of my cousin's kids staying with us for a few days, happy to be here and be able to get in lots of horse riding and country play in our beautiful fall weather. About that .... We've had to find ways to entertain ourselves indoors today, what with our freak winter storm and all.

First order of business was Gardenopoly.

After that game was finished, we made some monsters.

I set them up with the tools, told them the basic steps, and turned them loose.

Then they turned on me and I had to stitch some of them together. Not Jay's - she did most of that herself - but Hannah and Jay's brother needed some stitching help.

This batch turned out cute also. I'm wondering if these little monsters ever *don't* turn out.


(Jay's brother's - he has yet to pick a moniker for this blog)

(And Jay's. This one may be my favorite out of all of the monsters we've made.)

After monsters, there were board games. Guess Who, Dragon's Journey, Memory. Computer games. Reading.

Feeding baby calves.

Another game of Gardenopoly. Such a cute take on Monopoly. They hit a lot of gardening stuff just right - for example, to get the money gathering in the middle of the board, you have to land on the 'Free Compost' space. Every gardener knows how much compost is worth ...

Also, the pieces that you move are too cute for words - a gnome, a worm, a ladybug.

One thing I've learned since they've been here - a nine-year-old boy cannot sit still.

Then a dancing show that both Matt and I had to participate in.

Gray was my partner and after our dance he wouldn't stay off the dance floor, much to the frustration of the next dancers.

Jay was Ains' favorite partner.

Then a movie (The Last Unicorn) and to bed. For me, too.