07 December 2016

Christmas Crafts

I helped the kids make some Christmas crafts to give their teachers.  We traced their hands and I showed them an example of what we were making.



Ellen worked on her own.  It's remarkable the difference nose placement makes.  I can't stop laughing when I look at it.



The Bairn went completely rogue with his googly eyes and made a monster.


17 November 2016

Around the House

There's been a lot of good playing around our house lately.  I've discovered the joy of letting big box stores mail my tuna fish and toilet paper right to my door, so we have a lot of boxes at our house just now.  The kids have been making race car ramps and houses and magic elevators.

This is Ellen's monster mask, designed and executed entirely by herself (I cut out the circles as part of a different cardboard project and she found them and used them).  The parts that stick out are the ears, the circles are the eyes, and the tiny tin pan is the nose, obviously.

This is Ellen's school bus in which she is driving her babies to a "cabinet."  Unfortunately, they hit a bear (as usual).

This is The Bairn's marble run.  He set up the pool noodle so that he could send a marble down, stop it with a funnel, and then let it drop onto the track and carry on through the run.

6 1/2 Months Old

Natey is 6 1/2 months old. He crawls, sometimes on his hands and feet instead of on his hands and knees. I love looking up from the sink and seeing him working his way across the kitchen floor.  He loves tearing paper and trying to eat choking hazards he finds on the floor.

He is his mama's boy and immediately protests if I leave the room.  He shakes his head 'no,' which sends the other kids into hysterics and he likes to stick out his tongue.  He's found his voice and spends quite a bit of time babbling and shouting.



We love him.

03 November 2016

The Sheep

A sheep showed up in our backyard the other week.  It circled the house a few times before settling in for a stay.  The kids were in the house losing their minds.  They were very, very concerned about getting the sheep home.  The Bairn unrolled a ball of yarn all through the house to make a trail for the sheep to follow.  He was planning to unroll the yarn all the way to the nearest farms in the community.  Ellen offered to use her superkitty powers to fly the sheep to its home.  The Bairn thought that perhaps we should call 911.  Steve phoned a sheep farmer friend to see what he knew (he knew nothing, but he offered to send some tasty recipes if we couldn't find the sheep's owner
).  I said a prayer with the kids that we could help the sheep get home and then we went to church and I said some extra (silent) prayers that we wouldn't have a dead sheep on the country highway where we live when we got back.


The sheep spent the night in our backyard, until a farmer came to trap it the next day.  It turns out that the sheep had escaped from the fun farm where Ellen celebrated her birthday.  The kids sat on the back of the couch watching the capture and then rejoiced when they were able to go play on the swing set again.

20 October 2016

Three Years Old

Ellen's birthday was yesterday.  She's three.  She's screamy.  She's worried about sock fuzz.  She loves to swing.  She insists on holding my hand to walk up or down the stairs.  She calls herself Superkitty.  She likes to jump.  If we ride in an elevator, it's her favorite part of the day.  She's grateful for trees ('they sway').

We went to a corn maze/fun farm for her birthday.  It was cold and she was scared of all the bouncy pillows and play structures when she saw them up close.  She did agree to look at the animals in the petting zoo.

And she asked to take her picture in this pumpkin sizer.

She's still not quite potty-trained.

She requested a kitty cake and a tree cake.  Cake decorating is not one of my skills.

Natey ate green beans instead of cake.

This is from today but it shows pretty well how E feels about her brother.

We love our little E.

16 October 2016

5 1/2 Months Old

My little sweetie boy is at my very favorite baby age.  I can't get enough of him.  He's very round and dimply.  He spends a lot of time on his hands and knees but hasn't figured out crawling yet.  He's become an awful nighttime sleeper.  I don't know if it's because he's teething or is prone to terrible diaper rashes or if he's just not interested in sleeping at night (like a certain Bairn I know).

I recently started feeding him solids, maybe partially because he looks so cute peeking around in a high chair.  He loves everything I've given him--bananas and peaches and yogurt mostly.  He also enjoys gagging himself with a baby spoon.


Here he is looking extra precious in a hat.

Snuggling his mama on Canadian Thanksgiving.

I left him alone with the bigger kids for one minute . . .

Maybe a silicone hat isn't so bad after all.

28 September 2016

A Getaway

We took a trip to Maine over the weekend. It was not my favorite trip. There were several unfortunate elements to the trip, such as

 -all our kids were sick

-we hit a bear on the drive down  (After we hit the bear, Steve asked me if I wanted to go back and check on it and The Bairn got upset and told him, "We have to get to our cabinet.  We don't have time to visit bears."  I don't know if he was worried about bears coming out of the woods or if he was really eager to go to the cabin.)

-our cabin looked a bit like this (we were staying at a Quaker camp that allows the teens who usually stay there to write on the walls/ceilings/bunks):










-because E was sick and I was nursing N, I was sleeping on the floor with an open sleeping bag and couldn't figure out how to keep warm at night until the last night

On the bright side,

-our cabin accommodation included a hot breakfast and dinner buffet in the dining hall every night

-we discovered an amazing children's museum

-we love the Common Ground fair and I got the fiddlehead ravioli this time, which I've been waiting to eat again for the last three years


Here's E chasing pigeons in Portland.  She also ran pigeons into the street in Bangor, in a super creepy city square where she took no note whatsoever of the slightly menacing human loiterers, because of her overwhelming love of birds.  
At lunch on this day, lots of elderly admirers came over to talk to E and compliment her on her curly hair and each time, she scowled at them and corrected them that it's not her hair, it's her "magic horn" (when she has a little ponytail on top of her head).

The Bairn sliding on cardboard at the Common Ground Fair

The Bairn hammering nails at the Common Ground Fair

The Bairn trying on masks at the fair

Little E

The Bairn assisting in the recreation of a moose skeleton

E looking sick and sad at the fair (a common look for her the entire weekend)

The Bairn in the park across the street from the capitol building in Augusta.  He insisted on taking a picture of it, because he claimed it was a temple.  He could tell because of the gold "angel" on top.

N hates going on trips.

E also looked like this a lot.

But she did enjoy bits of her vacation.

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