Friday, September 16, 2016

These days...not quite summer...not quite fall

We're not up to much. I would say we are trying to settle into a routine with the boys school, but Jason only went 1.5 hours each Tuesday and Thursday and Olivia tracked out Friday with an early release day, so there is no routine! Here are some things we have been doing:


Enjoying some Mom and Jason time while Leo was at school!

Making slide shows for homework! (When did she grow up?!)

Labor Day weekend, we went to Three Bears, which is an outdoor place to be dirty and have fun!

Sled slides, sling shot, outdoor bounce pillow, rolling in big pipe peices: 
 
Also rolling here: https://youtu.be/EfjooycQdHQ

Mud kitchen and outdoor painting!

Checking out Cary's newest playground and spray ground!

We went to the museum of natural science in Raleigh after Olivia's early release to kick off track out! Olivia loved the bees and tracked the queen bee for at least a half an hour while the boys and I did other activities in the discovery room!

Jason and I finally started Kindermusik!! He loved it! One school year of this and my guilt will be assuaged that I did it earlier and longer with the other two!

The weather hasn't cooled much, so we are enjoying the shade in the afternoon on our new back patio!

Jason's school is getting a little easier for him each day! His teachers send me pictures and say that the playground is his happy place! :)

Did I say that Jason loves sugared strawberries? I put this bowl on the counter to have after dinner and Jason climbed right up the stool and helped himself!

We discovered an open gym for toddlers and preschoolers near us and Jason loves it!

Olivia and I had some rare girl time this week while Jason was at school! This girl is sweet and happy and full of energy! We sewed a project we have a hard time working on with the boys around, and went for a hike at a park between the boys' schools. 

I pulled out my zinnias and tomato plants last weekend since they were drying up and looking scraggly. This was the last bouquet!

And the last pool day of the year was also last weekend! We're so lucky to have this in our neighborhood!

And Olivia's violin teacher, after much practice of posture, plucking of the the violin strings, moving fingers up the neck of the violin, practicing holding the bow first using Mom's finger and then a market and then the actual bow, finally allowed Olivia to touch the strings with the bow!! Olivia was so excited!

I got this text and picture from her teacher, who adores Olivia: perfect square position!!


Leo continues to love "martial arts", which he asked to join because that was one skill Batman taught Robin, and earned his first stripe Monday!




Nicholas took off work today and we all visited the world's largest zoo!








Friday, September 9, 2016

The first day of preschool!

Leo and Jason started separate preschools on Tuesday!! Leo is the the "Owls" class, which is a four day four-year-old class and Jason is in a two day toddler class. (They are in separate schools because Leo's school doesn't have a toddler program, and Jason's school's four year old program gets out forty five minutes after the toddler class does, which doesn't work for getting Jason a nap. Fortunately, the schools are just a few blocks away from each other. So my schedule goes like this: drop Leo off at nine, drop Jason off at 9:15, go home and work, pick up Jason at 12:15, he falls asleep in the car as we pick up Leo at 12:30.)

Anyway, what we really care about: pictures!

Preview day for Leo's class:


Preview day for Jason:

First day!! Look at these cuties!




Leo had a great day playing and learning! I'm excited about his year full of crafts, music, science, and playing before Kindergarten--when all that goes out the window! Most of Leo's friends from last year are at other schools or in other four-year-old classes. We are proud of him for making his own way!

Jason's class is transitioning to the full three hours by doing two weeks of 1.5 hour days. When I dropped him on the first day, he cried. :( He cried during transitions and was crying when I picked him up. Poor boy. The second day, he didn't cry at drop off, but cried a little during transitions. I was there first to pick him up, and he just cried a bit when he saw me. He is doing really well, though! Here are some pictures from his teacher.












Saturday, September 3, 2016

Mutti's visit!!

While I was gallavanting around the country, Mutti came! She came bearing Legos and play doh, and the kids were thrilled to play with her! She helped Nicholas take care of the kids while I as away, and we had a great visit Friday and Monday when I was in town.

Texted from Nicholas while I was in St. Louis:

Movie night!

Playing upstairs:

Play doh for hours!

Trains!

Grocery shopping:

And when I got back, we celebrated Mutti's birthday!



I'm so glad she makes such an effort for the kids!! Thanks, Mutti!



Wednesday, August 31, 2016

Visiting Heidi!!

I got away...on a plane...by myself...overnight...to St. Louis to see Heidi, Alex, Isaac, and Asher!!! It. Was. Awesome!!

I left our house at 5:30 am Saturday morning and arrived in St. Louis at 8:40 their time. Heidi and Isaac picked me up and the fun began! I got to play outside with Isaac, to meet and play with Asher, to get some good visiting time with Heidi, swap baby clothes as Stemm sisters are prone to do, and even have some alone time!!


Sweet Isaac got sick on Sunday, which became increasingly clear as the day wore on and he became more and more snugly!


Asher was super fun, too, and let me hold and play with him, and even put him down for a nap once! 


Here are my alone time pictures! Amazing!

Tuesday, August 23, 2016

Olivia's school is doing Boosterathon again!

Seriously, y'all! I thought we would get a year off, but they are doing it again this year. Consider pledging! (Remember that she will run 35 laps, so even a $1 per lap donation is big. You can also do a flat donation of any amount by choosing "Flat Donation".)

Here's the video:



And here is where you pledge! They are trying to get someone from every state to pledge, so if you can do a flat donation of $5, Olivia would be thrilled!

https://funrun.boosterthon.com/a/s/wGquorlq

Thursday, August 18, 2016

Jason's 18 month photos

I couldn't make it work to have them taken this time, so I took them this morning. Even though they don't look quite professional, I am pleased to get some cute smiles!!