Tuesday, July 08, 2014

Ten on Tuesday.

1. I've thought about doing a Ten for the past few weeks, but usually by the time I think of it, it's really not even close to still being Tuesday, or even Wednesday for that matter. Summer can be wonderfully lazy.

2. We have our second round of newly-hatched robin babies, so clearly summer is not lazy time for those guys.

3. Lazy summer means to me that we are gathered around the table while the breezes blow in through the screen, book pages fluttering, feeling slow. This is today.

4. The perfect summer dessert is a grilled peach drizzled with honey, homemade whipped cream generously heaped on the side. Must get more peaches.

5. We had a lovely Fourth, starting with a morning canoe on Silver Lake, and ending with taking the kids to see fireworks for the first time. Alla said they were "too pretty for words." Agreed.

6. We of course had our Ron Killins fireworks show at home first, though.

7. Alla started orchestra yesterday, and seems just perfectly suited to this responsibility. I hope that she'll continue to be excited to learn as the days (and years) wear on.

8. Ron and I are nearly done binge-watching the first five seasons of Sons of Anarchy and starting to feel the panic of it ending! At least we haven't watched season 2 of Orange is the New Black yet. Whew.

9. I started the new JoJo Moyes book yesterday and am feeling that this is a perfect summer read.

10. With that, we're off to the library for summer reading prizes, and then the Farmer's Market for (hopefully) something for dinner. These kids sure eat a lot.

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Ten on Tuesday.

1. Here we are in the second week of summer. The sun is hot, the day is bright. Truly the best days of the year.

2. Our first two weeks are full of swimming lessons in the morning.

3. Kids are busy being kids. Our true summer day is sandwiched between swim in the morning and sports in the evening. The down time is lazy and feels like summer should. A little bit of learning, a little bit of helping out around the house, and a lot of playing outside, Rainbow Looming, and even cross-stitching.

4. Lots of rain. The garden is growing!

5. It's been six summers now that we've done at least one summer (evening) sport, and by now I could have written a book on summer meals, yet every summer I wonder what's for dinner and when we're going to eat it.

6. On today's to-do list: make a 2014 block party flyer!

7. The kids and I finished reading Hoot after lunch today! How amazing is it to finish a book outside under the umbrella!

8. A sports update: Alla is playing soccer again, and Fisher has added baseball to his roster. It is great fun to watch both of them play.

9. This year for summer reading I made each of the kids a list of 20 books and if they read any ten, they can choose their own reward. They still have time to read things they have in mind, but are also being exposed to things they might not pick up otherwise. Case in point: on Fisher's list was Diary of a Wimpy kid, which we'd been suggesting for awhile but he didn't seem interested in. Well, he read that one first and now wants to read the whole series!

10. We have been taking advantage of our drive time to and from swimming by listening to our first audio book of the summer - Escape, which is about the life of Houdini. I would say the kids are interested in his 'tricks,' and Alla wants to find out how he died, but other than that it's reading pretty dry, so I'm looking forward to listening to something a little more energetic next!

Thursday, May 15, 2014

Good Job, Honey.

I'm calling this a win! Mother's Day photos with everyone looking at the camera, genuine smiles, everyone in focus. Best Mother's Day gift ever.

Hope you all had a lovely day, too!

Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Ten on Tuesday.

1. We have a robin's nest! They built it one day last week, but we got nervous when we didn't see them around much of Saturday or Sunday. Then Mama Robin sat in it all day yesterday, and sure enough, a perfect blue egg!

2. Alla had her Reading Hall of Fame ceremony last night. The kids record their reading minutes each month, and if they reach the goal for their grade in seven of eight months they receive a medal at a special ceremony in May. Alla is an old pro, and Fisher will have his first ceremony tomorrow night!

3. This is the start of what is a busy May for families all over the country, I suspect, with schools cramming in ceremonies and field trips and sports starting up.
4. Fisher, in fact, will have his first field trip tomorrow!
5. Since all this activity is leading up to summer vacation, I'm wondering just when summer might actually arrive? The kids would love to get the summer box out, with all the warm weather clothes, but I keep telling them we need warm weather for that.
6. Same goes for planting. I'd really like to plant more than peas and radishes. I'd really like to put in some new perennials and fill up my planters and deck containers with colorful annuals. But who wants to be out gardening in 50 degrees?
7. Somehow, though, the weather on Saturday mornings hasn't been half bad. Fisher has his tennis lesson then, and it's been relatively lovely to sit out and watch him, even it's from under a blanket.
8. Tonight's dinner - Crockpot Pinto Beans. Family favorite.
9. The kids and I went to Barnes and Noble to spend their birthday gift cards this weekend. Alla found Maleficent and is just giddy to see the movie.
10. I am nearly done reading The False Prince for the second time around and eager to get onto the next two books in the trilogy but also picked up Year of No Sugar at the library, and have a week to read that. Such good things to read lately!

Tuesday, May 06, 2014

Ten on Tuesday.

1. Yesterday was the first day I thought, Spring has sprung.

2. I am absolutely eager to start planting stuff. Flowers! Veggies! Herbs! Baskets! Bring on the color!

3. Yesterday was also Cinco de Mayo, which in our house means carnitas, homemade salsa and guacamole, slaw to go on top of your carnitas tacos, and margaritas! I squeezed a lot of limes yesterday.

4. Relishing reading The False Prince again!

5. Alla has taken on another role at school: walk patrol. (This to me means getting her there earlier and picking her up later, and trying to keep Fisher occupied for those 10 minutes on either side of the day, both times that he'd rather just be outside at home playing with friends.)

6. Yesterday I did what Ron has coined the "Mother's Triathlon." Run 4 miles, bike 4 miles, work in the garden.

7. The tree pollen is trying to beat me down, but so far my lemon, lavender and peppermint are getting the job done. I'm sneezing like crazy but this year not scratching my eyes out, so we'll call that a win.

8. Today we planted peas and radishes. Does anyone know of anything good to do with radishes?

9. I start out the day with a list and ambition, but by the time the kids are in bed, all of that is gone and it's all I can do to keep my eyes open on the couch. Here's to a good night's sleep and more ambition tomorrow, since my lists don't seem to get any shorter!

10. Greatly looking forward to Mother's Day this weekend!

Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Ten on Tuesday.

1. We're on day 3 of downpours. Today it's cold enough to mix with snow. Lovely.

2. Tomorrow we're supposed to be heading to the Twins game, where Alla's school choir will be singing the National Anthem. I have a feeling we will be leaving shortly after, if this weather does not improve.

3. Speaking of that lovely girl of mine, she turned 9 over the weekend. Last year of single digits.

4. I now have a 6 year old and a 9 year old. Just getting used to saying that.

5. My 6 year old lost his first tooth yesterday!

6. The kids and I are reading HOOT as their bedtime story, while Ron just started the 4th or 5th Narnia book on his reading nights.

7. Alla is deep into the first Fablehaven book.

8. Fisher is on the 37th Magic Tree House book.

9. The first tick of the season was spotted - on ME!

10. I'm off to build a boat, seeing as how rowing may be the only outdoor exercise I'm going to get all this rainy week!

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Ten on Tuesday.

1. A classmate of Alla's was lucky enough to visit Harry Potter World (I'm pretty sure that's not the official name, but that's what we've called it.) last week and told Alla that she got a wand. Alla then learned that they don't really work (as in, no real magic), so she's decided she doesn't even want to go there. Makes life a lot cheaper for this family.

2. We are in the middle of a great bedtime read, The Invention of Hugo Cabret. Tonight Alla hit on the fact that she likes the way Brian Selznick organizes this book and leaves you hanging. She says she likes books that "unveal" things.

3. On that note, apparently we aren't spending enough time at the library!

4. Alla says she has a list of authors in her desk at school, in case I need any help finding bedtime books. Ha! As if! My list grew longer today when I came across this other list again.

5. Next Wednesday night is World Book Night! I'm a giver!

6. Little Passports looks like a super fun way to learn about the world or the country over the summer.

7. I ran today in 29 degrees and seriously cold wind. My January self would be appalled at my wimpiness, but I declare my exhaustion with the crisp air that requires tights and mittens. I want to feel warmth again! I want to challenge my body to make its own vitamin D!

8. The kids are not swayed by the chilly weather, however. Fisher spent two late afternoon hours outside with the rest of the neighborhood kids as usual, playing kickball, soccer, basketball, tag, one game until they decide it's time for the next. I'm so glad he's a tough one, as the rest of the kids (all boys) are third, fourth, and fifth graders.

9. Alla's activity of choice, after doing some math and reading homework, was tree climbing. Today no one had to come tell me she was stuck in a tree! She scraped her hands pretty good though, and thinks some tree-climbing gloves are in order. I don't think that's an actual thing.

10. No school Friday, and aside from Memorial Day next month, this is it until the kids are out for the summer. Though it's still quite a distance to the last day of school, we can all feel that excitement that comes when the school fills up the last two months of the calendar with fun things. A busy month and a half is ahead!