Saturday, March 28, 2009

The Worm Rescuer

Liam the Worm Rescuer
Liam the Worm Rescuer

On Wednesday morning it was raining when we went out to wait for the bus' arrival to whisk the elder youth off to another fun pact day of learning or well at least a few hours as it was early release day. Upon our arrival to the driveway the kids discovered the worms have invaded the driveway. I loaded the wee youth in the vehicle for the required trip to school for the day. While loading the vehicle the eldest youth came to the conclusion that if the worms stayed in the driveway that the van would drive over them and squish them. He set out on mission to save the worms of our driveway. While waiting for the bus he picked up the slimy wigglers and airlifted them to the safety of the yard. Alexis wanted to help but couldn't figure out how to pick up the worms. Liam informed it was easy, "Touch them and then they make a U as they curl up, just grab that part" She still wasn't convinced. Liam rescued several before the bus came and he dropped of his last survivor and headed out to the bus.

Have you ever wondered why earthworms come out of the ground when it rains. I use to think it was because they would drown in the ground when their holes filled with water however I had to go research this because I wasn't certain this was the right information. Turns out I was very wrong. I found this information

Worms don't have respiratory systems like humans. They take in oxygen through their skin which is covered in tiny mucus-secreting cells. For this reason, a worm's skin needs to stay moist for it to survive. Dry skin means death to a worm.

When it rains, worms leave the ground because the wet ground is much easier for them to navigate, plus they don't have to worry about drying out in the hot sun. Most often when they come to the surface they are doing so because it's easier to find mates on the flat open ground as compared to underground in their burrows.

Gardener John Mertus said it best in his article on earthworms: “To an earthworm, the wet ground is a wild singles bar.” For more information, see The City Naturalist - Earthworms

I wonder now if Liam's rescue of the worms was helpful or a hindrance to their love life, eithe way I am sure they were happier in the grass then in my tire. Hopefully they were able to find a good singles bar in the grass since the driveway was being evacuated.

On your next rainy day when you see those worms inching their way along the sidewalk or driveway, smile and know they are on a mission of love.

Friday, March 27, 2009

Landon meets a Butt Freckle

DaDee had fun introducing the kids to the new Buttfreckles we got today. Unfortunately the Butt Freckle was a little nervous.

Thursday, March 26, 2009

I have a new addiction/problem

I have been lead done a path to addiction by some fellow fishie friends from Fishing for Deals . They introduced me to the land of Etsy and I can't tear myself away. It is like a virtual craft fair so much to see but never enough time to see it all. There are many wonderful items and few that make you go hmm, wonder who would buy that. I have been sucked in to: 1 dress for Brenna, 2 Buttfreckles, 3 scrabble tile pendants, 4 fairy door stickers, and some vinyl words. I have several things saved in my favorites that are enticing me to push buy but I am resisting so far.
For viewing pleasure I present some of my recent surrenders.

Brenna's Dress

[caption id="" align="alignnone" width="430" caption="Unauthorized Item Butt Freckle"]Unauthorized Item Butt Freckle[/caption]

The amazing Buttfreckles, aren't they so adorable

[caption id="" align="alignnone" width="430" caption="Wizard's Sleeve Butt Freckle"]Wizards Sleeve Butt Freckle[/caption]

Then for gifts the scrabble tile pendants. Shh don't tell they are surprises

One of the fairy doors

and one of the viyl words. I got Hello in denim blue color

The worst part of this addiction is that all things I love that I know I can make and refuse to buy but then don't actually make. There are some adorable kids clothes but I know I can make them much cheaper so I refuse to lay out the money but I don't head upstairs and start making them either.

If you enjoy craft shows, are crafy or just love to browse check out you sure to find something to suck you in.

Liam takes a Big Test

Because Liam scored so well on his Terra Nova testing he was invited to test for a contained Gifted and Talented classroom for next year. I was hesitant to allow him to take the test as I am not sure that the contained classroom is where he needs to be. However we asked him about it and he excitedly replied he would like to take the test so I we allowed him. Tuesday was the big day. Jason got up and made him scrambled eggs with sausage and cheese so he had a good breakfast in him. He headed off to school excited about the idea of possibly getting in to the GT class. I was/am still nervous. I worried he would be overwhelmed by the test and worried he would be disappointed if he doesn't make it and also worried that he will make it. At the end of the day he came home not worried about the test but upset that the fire alarm went off in the middle of his math part of the test. That seemed to bother him the most however he did say he was very tired. In fact so tired that he didn't want to participate in his gymnastics class that afternoon and chose to sit and watch with me and DaDee.

Now we wait until May to see how he did on the test and if he was selected to participate in the GT classroom. While he is very excited about the possibilty of being the class I worry about it as I am sure there will be more writing required and while he has been improving he still struggles to start on writing assignments. I wonder if it wouldn't be better for him to do better in a regular classroom and then to struggle in the GT class.

Also on Tuesday night I attended a PTO meeting where they discussed ISTEP testing. While this doesn't effect Liam until next school year it was still informative to learn about. I did notice that there was lots of writing on the samples they showed to us and this did raise concern for me in regards to Liam. I spoke to the principal about my concerns after the meeting and I feel a little better. He also told me that they have had kids in the GT class that struggle with writing and have interventions in place to help them. I guess I hadn't thought of this possibilty so I have a little less worry while we wait to see how he did. Luckily I have plenty to take my mind off the results while we wait.

Monday, March 23, 2009

Brenna's funny night time ritual

Ms. Brenna is so funny. She comes up with the funniest things to do. One of the ones I just noticed but she may have been doing with Jason for a while is that he has to stop on the stairs when he carries her up to bed so she can touch the ceiling. I have now taken to teasing her and telling her she can't touch my ceiling so she cracks up and slowly reaches out a hand to touch my ceiling every night. Here she is in action.

Brenna the Ceiling toucherBrenna the Ceiling toucher

The crazy multicolored object over her shoulder is "Ahhh" her blankie. When she was little she got attached to this piece of fabric I bought and would carry it around with her. We use to say "Ahhh your so cute" she decided that the blanket was called "Ahhh" and it has been "Ahh" ever since. We go through Ahh phases where she can't be with out it and then times where she could care a less about Ahh. She is currently in an Ahh phases so we see Ahh a lot these days. I did have the thought when she was little to cut the big piece of fabric in half so she would have two Ahhs.

4 years ago today

After reading my friend's blog Life with 3 Monkeys and her adoption anniversary it made me recall what we were doing on March 23rd 4 years ago. We dropped off Alexis and Landon with my sister and headed out to court for the 2nd time. We had went in January and the kids birth parents surprised us by showing up. At that time they surprised us by saying that they knew they couldn' t care for the kids and were willing to sign consents to adopt. For some reason no one got them to sign then and we went in to see the judge. They told the judge they wanted to sign and the judge told them they need to see a public defender and discuss it and come back in March. It was now that day in March and we wondered if they would show, if they would sign, what would happen. We got to the court house and found seats. Talked to the caseworker who said she hadn't heard from the parents nor seen them yet. We sat and waited for them to call us in to court. About a hour later the parents walked in. We couldn't believe it. The caseworker came and took them somewhere to meet their attorney and came back and said they still wanted to sign and were going to that day. We were stunned. A few minutes later they all came back and they had signed for us to adopted Alexis and Landon. 3 months to the day we went to a different court room and the officially and forever joined our family.

Tuesday of this week I loaded the car with a stroller, snacks, diaper bag, the 3 littlest kids and we headed back to court. Rumor had it that their mother was going to show up at court today and sign consents for Wubba to be adopted. We got to court at 1:20 and met the caseworker in the parking lot. We got in to the waiting area and we began waiting. Our caseworker tried calling her after we waited about 20 minutes for her to show but got no answer. So we went back to waiting and trying to keep the kids entertained in a rather warm and pretty packed waiting room. Later she called back and said she was working and wouldn't be able to make it. She then told the caseworker that she can't support herself with her income and knows she can't care for the Wubba Man and that she is willing to sign. Now the tricky part getting her, the paperwork and an attorney all at the same place so she can sign. While it would have been nice to have her sign close to the same day she signed with the first two we will be thrilled when ever it happens. Although Jason refuses to commit to a name for the Wubba man until he knows he is ours forever. It would be nice to get to start calling him his forever name.

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Monkeying Around at Monkey Joes

[caption id="" align="alignnone" width="399" caption="Brenna with Monkey Joe"]Brenna with Monkey Joe[/caption]

We got to try out a new inflatable play land called Monkey Joes on Friday. This place is awesome. It is just for the under 12 crowd and the staff at our closest location was amazing. One of the attendents met our kids at the door and said "Come on lets play" and they took off running for the back, even Brenna tried to keep up. We caught up with them in the back on a giant dual slide and the attendent was racing my kids down the slides. They were thrilled. Brenna made friends with a wonderful girl worked there named Trevae who assisted Brenna through every single inflatable at least 3 times. Trevae was awesome and Brenna was thrilled, whenever Brenna would take a break she would look around and say "Where my friend?" Then she would go off looking for Trevae again.

[caption id="" align="alignnone" width="422" caption="Brenna and her friend take on another inflatable"]Brenna and her friend take on another inflatable[/caption]

With 4 kids running in different directions it got kind of hard to keep up with all of them at the same time. I would go looking for one of them and often find them racing one of the attendents through one obstacle or down the slides with the biggest smiles on their faces. The management came through often asking how things were and if we needed anything. At one point I went looking for Landon who I hadn't seen and bumped in to a manager, he asked how things were I said great just looking for one of the kids. He said he could get some staff to help me I said I am sure he is happily playing. He then said "let me know if we can help" It was so wonderful to not be worried about the kids, to know that they aren't getting trampled by big kids, that the staff really do care about their jobs and the kids.

They even have an area designated for the 3 and under crowd and they did a good job making sure the older kids weren't in there unless they were assisting a sibling. Wubba loved the baby land. We would squeal with delight as soon as we put him in to play

[caption id="" align="alignnone" width="444" caption="Wubba happy as a clam in the under the sea inflatable"]Wubba happy as a clam in the under the sea inflatable[/caption]

Liam is so good at helping the little kids at place like this. He loved getting in to play with Wubba. I am often surprised by this side of him because a lot of time he hardly pays them any attention at all but every once in awhile he will surprise us and be so great with them. He loved showing Wubba around and helping him experience all the sea creatures.

[caption id="" align="alignnone" width="441" caption="Riding the snail or is it a turtle?"]Riding the snail or is it a turtle?[/caption]

Alexis was going almost the whole time we were there. We often found her sitting looking tired but when we asked her if she was tired she would say no and take off again. They all loved this giant circular trampoline like inflatable. Brenna would just run in circles. The other would bounce like crazy, towards the end they would lean on the sides and Jason would bump the side and send them crashing back and they would laugh and laugh and climb up to do it again.

[caption id="" align="alignnone" width="441" caption="Lexi spinning in the big trampoline."]Lexi spinning in the big trampoline.[/caption]

Landon loved the obstacle course inflatable.

[caption id="" align="alignnone" width="453" caption="Landon climbs the end of the obstacle course"]Landon climbs the end of the obstacle course[/caption]

And I can't leave out my wonderful honey. The man that makes the money so we can go to crazy places like Monkey Joes. My love and DaDee to the herd

[caption id="" align="alignnone" width="462" caption="DaDee is tired after 4 hours at Monkey Joes"]DaDee is tired after 4 hours at Monkey Joes[/caption]

It was an awesome evening. They spent 4 hours jumping and running and thankfully even slept in the next morning. We loved it so much we bought the pass so we can go back again soon. Thanks Monkey Joes for a wonderful time, we will be back soon.

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

My Better Half and I

Copy and paste this into a new note and change the answers... You don't have to be married! If I tagged you, it means I want to see yours! Tag all the people you feel like tagging.

How long have you been together? Been married for 18 years in August this year

How long did you know each other before you started dating? Just over 2 years. I met him just before he turned 18 and I was only 14

Who asked who out? I don't think we officially asked each other out. We both knew we liked each other and when the situation was right we just went from friends to a couple

Whose siblings do you see the most? Probably mine well at least my sister. His sister lives 3 hours away and my other siblings live even further away

Do you have any children together? One bio son we managed to conceive after 9 years, 3 adopted, and one foster

What about pets?1 dog and a couple of fish

Did you go to the same school? yep

Who is the most sensitive? Me

Where do you eat out most as a couple? Just the two of us Ha Ha that's a joke.

Where is the furthest you two have traveled together as a couple? To Hawaii where we lived for almost 5 years

Who has the craziest exes? We both have a couple but for different reasons

Who has the worst temper? Oh that is definitely me. Although if you get him mad enough he can let his show but it is very rare.

Who does the cooking? That would be him. I despise cooking and we would have soup or sandwiches if left to me

Who is more social? Yeah that would be too and I am not very social What does that make him???

Who is the neat freak? We got some freaks here but unfortunately none of them are worried about clutter or dirt.

Who is the most stubborn? Depends on the day but if I had to pick I would say him but I have been known to be stubborn on my own

Who hogs the bed? The dog, oh um that would probably be me too.

Who wakes up earlier? I do but that's cause my internal clock is broken and won't reset past 6:30Scott

Where was your first date? Well what I would call our first date he didn't know was a date. I thought we were double dating with a friend he thought he was keeping his friend's girlfriend's friend company. So on that date we went to visit his girlfriend at work (Yeah that's when I learned he was informed it was a date) and then to his house to watch a movie and he made me drink sugar free kool aid or crystal light. I guess our first official date we went to see "Cousins" with my mom. He just informed me that we ate twizzlers on this date.

Who has the bigger family? Definitely Me

Do you get flowers often? Occasionally though I gave him hard time about sending them through the florist so he now will bring them home to me

How long did it take to get serious? I am sure not as long as it should have. But we were married just over a year after we started dating. (Side Note: When I asked Jason this question he started singing the Wonderpets Theme. This Serious, We've got help them....... wonderpets, wonderpets ....)

Who eats more? He says he does but have you seen my butt

Who sings better? I sing more often but he is the one with the talent. You should see if you can get him to do his swedish chef impersonation he refuses to do it for me because I laugh but it is so cute and funny.

Who does the laundry?usually me but he will do it once in a while.

Who’s better with the computer? Well god I hope it's him since he does it for a living. Unless your talking social networking I have to teach him he is so not the social butterfly

Who drives when you are together? Usually him, thankfully. Use to be because he would get motion sick but since his laser vision surgery it isn't as bad but I still make him drive. I am a bully that way.

Who picks where you go to dinner? Hmm that varies on the day. I will suggest and if he doesn't like my suggestion he pretend he didn't hear my suggestion.

Who is the first one to admit when they’re wrong? Not him

Who wears the pants in the relationship? We both have some they are usually in the dirty laundry. He said he prefers no pants.

Who has more tattoos? We both have one. His is bigger mine has more pieces. However I already want another one and he hasn't said anything about another one

Who eats more sweets? That would be me.

Really this ends with who eats the most garbage. Gee... wish I could think of a better question to end with Oh Well.. Tell me about your HoKnee (Or if you aren't weird like me Honey)

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

One Proud Mama

Liam came home on Friday with the results of his Terra Nova testing (sort of like Istep but for 2nd graders). We were surprised at the results and very proud of him. He scored in the 96th percentile on the national percentile scale for math. In language he scored in the 93rd percentile. In the reading area he scored in the 67th percentile, this area covered the written portion and for some reason he still struggles with writing. While he still struggles with writing he is doing better. He use to refuse to write at all and now he at least most of the time attempts to put something down and some times really surprises us with what he gets accomplished. If he is excited about the subject he will usually get right to writing so we love the free writing time.

This past week he also had to do a report on a Famous American. We read thru the list of suggested people and he didn't really like any of the choices except Dr. Seuss and we figured that a few people would choose him since it was his birthday week. DaDee suggested Millard Fuller, and once we explained who he was and what he did he was very excited. Oh, in case you didn't know


and if you couldn't hear or understand him, Millard Fuller is the founder of Habit for Humanity. He recently passed away. He builds houses for people who can't afford them. I was surprised that he got so excited about him and really in to working on the project . At the end of the week the kids got to dress as their American and they opened the classroom for parents to come visit the museum and talk to all the Americans.

We are never short of amazed by him, he surprises us with how quickly he gets stuff from spelling words to math concepts, he is very inquisitive and asks lots of questions and is always coming up with crazy ideas of ways things could be done better. He is great helper and good big brother most of the time. ;0)