30 October 2008

Harry Potter & The Sorcerer's Stone by Adam

The Harry Potter series is split in seven books. Each book is one year Harry goes to Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry.

The first book Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone really caught my attention. It was hard to put down the book. Harry met his best friend, Ron, on the train to Hogwarts, The Hogwarts Express. He also met Neville and Hermoine on the train. When they got to Hogwarts they had to try on the sorting hat, which determines which house they join: Gryffindor, Ravenclaw, Hufflepuff, or Slytherin. My favorite house is Gryffindor because some of the greatest wizards of all time were in Gryffindor. Slytherin is my least favorite house because it produces most of the dangerous dark wizards.

Throughout the year Harry not only learns about how to be a wizard, but he learns about who his parents where. He also starts to learn about his past and how it is connected to his future.

I would strongly recommend the Harry Potter books to anyone who likes fiction/adventure books.

29 October 2008



Amazingly talented!!!!

I wish Carus was a tad bit smaller so she could still fit in these skirts, but I know of a few little girls that would be just as cute.

Holidays this year

I am SO excited for the holidays this year! I actually get visitors!

Peter, his girlfriend Carrie, and my mom are coming up for Thanksgiving dinner, which I'm hosting this year. And Gramma and Poppy are coming up for Christmas and they might drag Bud along too.

I can't wait!!!

Just 28 more days until Thanksgiving!!!!

Wait - second thoughts....I have to clean ;)

Adam's post has been delayed

I asked him to review the Harry Potter books this week. He had a good start to book #1 and then burnt out real fast - so I cut it back to just reviewing book 1 but then he decided he just didn't want to do the work anymore.

He has been given a new deadline of tomorrow afternoon for book 1 and we will continue with 1 book review a week until he gets through the series.

Stay tuned for more! :)

27 October 2008

My costume and Adam's costume

My costume is almost ready. It is Monday, October 27, 2008. 4 days until happy Hallowen. Adam is going to be a robot. I'm going to be Dorothy from The Wizard of Oz. My costume has an apron and the dress is white and blue. I am going to have red sparkly shoes.

Happy Halloween!

22 October 2008

Pumpkin Hunting by Adam

Last Saturday, I went to a pumpkin patch with my grandparents to get pumpkins. While we where there we had a free hay ride. Then we got to pet a rooster, 3 rabbits, 1 guinea pig, and got to ride a horse. The name of the horse I rode is Spider. He was completely white. I was nervous at first because I was high off the ground and I'm afraid of heights. Then, after a while, I wasn't nervous at all! The name of the horse my sister rode is Zippy. He's coat is the color of chestnut. There was one other horse, but he looked tired. My pumpkin is round and decent size. It is about 5 pounds. My pumpkin is bright orange, with a stubby stem. I usually look for a medium sized pumpkin with a stubby stem. There was a pumpkin that somebody kicked, and there was one that was the size of me crouched in a ball. I'm going to carve mine into something, but I'm not sure what. (I'm still thinking)

On Sunday, my dad and I started to make my robot costume for Halloween. We got a box and used dryer tubing for the arms and legs. I'm going to have a smaller box for my head with a rectanglar shaped hole so I can see. I'm going to have a small box over my shoes because robots don't wear sneakers. There is going to be a small light on my head with a wire down my back to a button in my hand, so I can switch it on and off. My costume is covered in tin foil. The lights are going to flash different colors. I can't wait for Halloween. I'm so excited.

20 October 2008

The silly penguins by Carus


On Saturday I went to the zoo. At the zoo we went to see the penguins. The penguin was following my coat.

It was funny and fun. We loved it until the penguin left.

Kids updates

We had parent/teacher conferences last week (sorry I'm late about this - been busy and I'm easily distracted). Oooh look - squirrel

Wait, I was doing something....oh yeah!

Carus's new teacher is still getting to know Carus and he feels like she is adjusting to the move well. (more on the move and why there was one in a moment) He asked more insight into her learning style and where I would like her to improve - I would like her confidence in herself to improve. She needs to work on her reading and she needs to go with her gut on some of her answers. He showed the math addition drills that they were doing since it will be coming home as homework soon and when showed two sets of cards (9 and 10 and 2 and 10) Carus was able to add 2 and 10 without hesitation, but she hesitated on the 9 and 10. She paused and was counting to herself on her fingers and came up with 19, so he asked her how she found the answer and she said that she started at 12 and counted up and stopped at 19 (my theory is that she knows the answer with no hesitation, but isn't sure how she is getting the answer and lacks confidence in her answers so tries to prove she knows it....) She is doing great socially and is right on track with her learning. He hasn't had too many problems with her talking because he found out about it early and has kept on top of it.

Now the reason for the move - last week the principal called to let me know that there has been some staffing changes this year because of enrollment. Kindergarten enrollment was higher than expected and 1st grade enrollment was lower than expected. Carus's teacher was pulled and put as a helper to 2 other teachers in the mornings and teaching a 3rd Kindergarten class in the afternoon. 1st and 2nd grades went from 4 classes each to three 1st grade, three 2nd grade, and one 1st/2nd grade mix. Carus was placed in the 1st/2nd grade mix because of her learning style, how quickly she is learning, her personality, and her creativity - which the new teacher is supposedly really big on creativity and art projects.

Adam is doing really well. His teacher says he is very happy and is getting all the support he needs from home (and even thank me for it - made my day!). His reading is still above average, and he is still not allowed to bring Harry Potter books to school. His math is also still above average, but he is having trouble showing the problem solving the way they want him too (they need him to show how he finds the answer and how they want him to find the answer). Mr. K let me know that he needs to work on accepting that he can be wrong sometimes. He has had some trouble in group sharing/learning. His writing also needs LOTS of improvement - something we have been struggling with, but now I'm just cracking down on it more.

And that brings me to the point of this post - to announce that Adam will be making weekly contributions to the blog. He is to write a story every week. I might give him the subject or a book to review, or he might get to make something up. His posts will be every Wednesday.

Carus wanted to join in on this too (her writing is right on track for her age/grade) so her posts will be every Monday. She wanted to be first each week and Adam whined about being told to do it at all.

Her post will be posted shortly (you've probably already seen it).

13 October 2008

I'm a cousin again.....again

My cousin Emma and her husband Cody welcomed Reese Mae into the world early morning of October 12, 2008. She weighed in at a very tiny 5 lb 8 oz and 18 inches. And then they gave her a tinier bow.

Congratulations Emma and Cody!!!

11 October 2008

There was a penguin that had a crush...

We went to the zoo today - I try to go once every month or two. Nothing special going on. Quite a bit is blocked off and closed. They are remodeling to get ready for the new Africa exhibit next summer where they will have lions again - first time in like 10 years or so - can't wait for that. And they are putting up the lights for zoo lights which should open mid November. That is pretty awesome too. When it is cooler outside the animals are more active. We got to see the bald eagles really close up and we got to see the new baby elephant that is just a few weeks old.

Anyways, we went to check out the penguins today and there was a penguin that was swimming along following Carus back and forth. She would run one way and he was right next to her and then she would flip around real quick and he would too. He didn't want to follow Adam and he didn't want to follow other kids - he liked Carus.


08 October 2008

The spiders around here are HUGE!

Carus has named him Bob
Originally uploaded by smiles2have
I have started putting out Halloween and fall decorations. Carus has named him Bob and he is a new addition - every year I get at least one new decoration per holiday. Poor Carus is terrified of all bugs - real or fake - and she has only pet Bob once and that was with one finger to his hairy leg for just a second.

I have some more ideas and we still have to get our pumpkins - and eventually carve them.

Our real spiders are still pretty big around here and have been making webs like crazy. I'm always walking into one and then I have to do a little dance to make sure there isn't a spider on me and then find someone else to look.

More pics can be seen here:

06 October 2008

Funny stories #1

While talking to my mom she suggested that I tell some funny stories from the kids - so this is collection #1.

When Carus was a baby Adam would watch me change her diaper and he would just watch quietly, or talk and coo at her to distract her so she wouldn't get upset. When she was maybe 1-2 months old, I was changing her when Adam announced, "her penis will grow in later." He announced this as if it was something he had been contemplating for awhile and he had finally figured it out for himself.

After relaying this story to my mom (which I'm sure wasn't the first time even though she claims it is) she was reminded of when I was little and my first brother (I have 3 younger brothers), Bud, was a newborn. She had explained to me about the umbilical cord and how that it will fall off, so once while she was changing him I noticed his penis and asked, "did mine fall off with my umbilical cord?" - She still nearly wets herself laughing.

Her favorite story from my kids is a recent one. Earlier this summer we were cleaning out their toy boxes and getting some old toys together to sale for the yard sale. I had them dump the entire tub and we had a keep pile, throw away pile (for all the broken ones), and a sale pile. When we had thinned out the mountain I decided the kids could finish up themselves while I moved onto something else. It didn't take long for the arguing to begin and neither one was helping as much as the other felt was necessary. Adam finally had enough and said, "Carus go sit in the sale pile so we can put you in the yard sale."

Another favorite of hers was from a few summers ago when I had my grandparents (gramma and poppy), her and her husband (Terye and Claude), my three brothers (Bud, Peter, and Charlie), and Peter's girlfriend (Kari) visiting for the 4th of July. Poppy had said that he was a little tired and wanted to lay down for a bit so Carus offered him her bed. He said he wasn't sure if he would fit and she said, "it's big enough for 2 fat people."

All young kids repeat swear words and mine have learned one or two - partly because I (and Robert) refuse to never swear since I'm an adult and have earned the right to say whatever I want, especially when I stub my toes; and partly because of our friend, David, who doesn't have kids and thought it would be a good idea to teach a 2-year-old Adam to say 'joto' (pronounced ho toe - gay in spanish). Another time, Adam was about 3 and got frustrated at Robert so he yelled the 'N' word and walked off. Thanks David. Also when Adam was 3 we were watching Mighty Joe Young on TV and Robert walked into the room. He watched for a moment and said, "that is a big fucking monkey." A few days later, Mighty Joe Young came on TV again and Adam, all excited, ran to Robert and said, "Daddy, daddy - Fuck a monkey."

Recently, I have been teaching the kids to cook so they can help with dinner and have more responsiblity. After Adam's first dinner Robert was teasing him by saying that the chef always eats last (I'm a great example of that), so the next night while Carus was finishing up her dinner her and Robert had the following conversation...

Carus: This is all for me.
Robert: But the chef eats last.
Carus: I'm not the chef, I'm the cook.

Our kids have little bits of smartass in them, we must be rubbing off. Last night Robert grabbed Adam and gave him a big hug that lifted him off the floor and his back popped.

Adam: Ow, my back.
Robert: Didn't it feel good to pop it?
Adam: No.
Robert: It feels good when I pop mine.
Adam: That's 'cause you're old.....der than me.

There was a pause and a look of 'oh crap' dawned on Adam's face...Nice save Adam.

Well that is all my empty, memory drained brain will allow me to remember this round.

I challenge my blog writing readers to post some funny kids stories. Kids do say the funniest things!

01 October 2008


I've been the main dinner maker for years and I'm getting a little burned out, so I've enlisted the kids to start helping more. (Robert is supposed to help too, but he doesn't usually need supervision.) The plan is that eventually we will all take turns planning and making meals and give me a break.

Since Adam is the oldest he went first. He made orange chicken, rice, and mini eggrolls and he did awesome. All I had to do was be there 'just in case'. His dinner was so yummy.

Carus isn't quite old enough for me to just direct, so she got to help make chili.

She helped grate cheese, brown the hamburger, dump the cans of tomatoes and beans, and stir it up.

It was very good and she is a great helper.

More pics can be seen here:

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