Lucy Archives

Anytime my family goes to a friend’s house to swim there are too many kids in the pool for me to feel comfortable. Add in some more friends and their kids and grown men with beer and you suddenly have this perfect storm of chaos that can make any mom’s heart lodge firmly right in her throat.

On Monday we spent the day at a friends house watching the kids swim, eating good food, and trying to keep everybody from drowning.  Taking the kids to a pool is always a somewhat stressful venture for me but I really did have a good time and Kait got some great pictures with her fancy shmancy new camera.

Lanie is doing so much better at wearing her glasses so I was able to leave her contacts at home so she could get into the pool. She absolutely loves the water and smiled the entire time.

Jesse has completely overcome his fear of getting his head wet. He’s well on his way to learn to swim but it’s hard when you have lead for bones. The boy is quite slim but he is incredibly dense and sinks like a rock so learning to swim is a little more difficult for him.

And what’s with all the pool noodles?

There were tiny cans of soda and best good friends and life jackets that saved my sanity.

And sweet love birds who are THISCLOSE to being husband and wife.

And Lucy with her freckles and those incredible eyes that are a milky blue one minute and green the next.

Even though there were 14 minor children running around and almost as many adults, we had a pretty relaxed and safe Labor Day. There are so many more pictures and we had so much more fun but we’re headed out to the library and I’ve gotta go.

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What happened while I had a weekend

I wrote this post this morning but I needed to add pictures but Lanie woke up cranky and with an incredibly stuffy nose and I wasn’t able to get the pictures uploaded.  Now it is almost 8 pm and I fixed Lanie’s nose and ran and went to a Labor Day pool party and came home and put Lanie down for a very late nap and made dinner and got the pictures uploaded and the moment you have all been waiting for has arrived. You’re welcome.


Today is Labor Day. and while Labor Day is just a day off for many people, for my kids it’s the highlight of the year or something because all the little ones came running up to me shouting Mom! Happy Labor Day! when I got up this morning. I have never heard anybody say happy labor day before so this was unusual.

We are going to a friend’s house to swim and maybe that has something to do with it.

Over the weekend we had many plans to work on the kitchen and finish the table and clean out the closet but none of that happened.  The kitchen has been put aside in favor of getting our table done so we can use it again because all these kids eating on the floor in the living room is no longer working for me.

The table is almost finished. I’ve been saying almost for about 2 weeks now but I think almost is finally actually here. Just a couple more coats of urethane and it should ready to use.

The kitchen will get there. It’s just not happening as fast as I had thought it would because every time we get back to it something else needs to be done.

And I completely ignored the closet in favor of…  I don’t know. I don’t remember what I did instead.  Maybe I was cooking or something.  I feel like I am always cooking.

After church Rabbit washed the cars yesterday and that was super awesome and then he took the kids to the ball field.

We’re more of a football family and have never really played much baseball so Rabbit spent some time giving pointers on how to pitch and bat.

The boys were all like, Woah, Dad, you’re really good! Did you play on a team when you were younger or something?

Rabbit puffed his chest out a bit and answered them.  Yeah, I played a bit of Little League back in the day.

We only have three gloves so while some played ball, the others went to climb around and swing at the playground.

If you ask Maggie what she’s doing she’ll always, always, always reply, not swinging high enough!

I wish I had been able to go but Lanie was sleeping. Also, cooking food without children asking me 100 questions about what I am doing and why I am doing it and will there be mushrooms in it againThe opportunity to cook alone was just was too enticing.

Today’s tip: My kids like cauliflower rice better than actual rice so I make fried rice with cauliflower instead of rice. Last night we had bacon friend cauliflower rice and today everybody has gas.  I don’t know what my tip here is but I’m just saying, if you feed your kids cauliflower rice watch out.

 

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I woke up at 6 am yesterday morning. This may not seem super early to most of you but for me this is like a 6am-er waking up at 3. Lanie doesn’t usually fall asleep until after midnight and as hard as I’ve tried to change her bedtime she just keeps reminding me that Lanie does what Lanie wants and the rest of us here are just along for the ride.

Also, since being sick she has gotten into the new habit of waking up to eat at night. Sometimes twice. Normally, my typical children would have never gotten away with this at 17 months old but Lanie is a different story. Anytime she will eat, I will feed her because failure to thrive is one of the scariest things and she still has trouble gaining weight and when she does gain weight it is difficult to keep that weight on her.

Back to my story…

So, I woke up at 6am after having gone to bed at around 12:45 and after being up with Lanie for more than 2 hours in the night and tucking Maggie back in after she had to get up to go potty and I would like to interject here that I love not having to buy pullups anymore.

I think I probably got about 3 1/2 hours of sleep. Normally that is fine and I function alright but it’s been many weeks of bad sleep and yesterday I was mostly sleep walking which was perfect because this was delivered at about 7am.

We needed to put all those squares of grass here:

So I made a bacon and spinach quiche for breakfast and then went on a run and then went out to see this:

And I realized that this was going to take forever.

Good thing the weather was a nice 70 degrees. Perfect for a long day working in the yard.

Until about here.

All of the sudden it was 95 degrees and super humid. All the kids were out working in full force, along with one of the older boy’s friends (Thanks, Danny!).

But these guys just pushed through while I made food and took care of the littles and took pictures of marginal quality.

Maggie really wanted to help so she put on her “work clothes”, which consisted of an oversized pink t-shirt and a long pink skirt.

Laying sod required a lot of wheelbarrowing. Or barreling according to my younger kids.

Some people may have died.

But the transformation was amazing.

We miscalculated and still need two more pallets of but sod even with that section not being completed I am so happy with the yard and I can’t believe we actually have grass!

Next project? Paint the bathrooms. Or maybe edge and put red mulch down in the front garden. Or maybe print some pictures out for the plain white walls throughout my house.

No, finish the table!

Wait, cabinets…

I’m going to have an anxiety attack.

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Lucy (6) and Maggie(3) are having a scooter and balance bike race in the large open area between the wide open kitchen and dining room.  Maggie is frustrated by the whole thing and she just took a break to come talk to me about it.

Maggie: Lucy’s cheating because I want to win.

Me: What happened?

Maggie: Well… I was behind Lucy and she was in front of me and so she won because she’s cheating.

Me: You know, that doesn’t sound like cheating.

Maggie: Yes it is because I wanted to win.

Me: Do you think that maybe she won because she was bigger and faster?

Maggie: Yes.

Me: Well, that isn’t cheating then.

Maggie: But I just really want to win.

I feel like there could possibly be a lesson here that a large percentage of the population of the United States could stand to learn. But for now, I’ll just start with my own kids and teach them that they cannot get what they want just because they want it. Life has never and will never work that way.
Fair is not a real thing.

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It has become our normal on Saturdays now to get a project done or partially done or maybe just a tiny bit done because it’s a huge deal to make all new kitchen cabinet doors and we keep getting sidetracked because there is always something shiny catching our attention.

We’re redoing the kitchen right now, which is a terribly large and time-consuming project and because we’re a glutton for punishment last week Rabbit and I decided we would add to the ever-lasting job by sanding and restaining our 14-foot long dining table which had become sticky and glittery (don’t ask) and gross. This sanding job that we thought would take a day or so after the help of urethane and stain stripper has turned out to take more than a week and “required” the purchase of a fourth sander and so much time that we could have been using to shop at Target.

We now have two sanders on the job and the hubster and I have both been working on the thick layers of stain and urethane that heavily coat this huge table and my hands are still vibrating and Rabbit says his fingers feel like they have springs in them.

I should add here that when I say I have been sanding, I mean I sanded once for like a half hour. Just enough to say I helped sand.  In my defense, Lanie has been sick this week and she requires me to squish and squeeze her and kiss all over her cheeks when she’s not feeling well so I really couldn’t do much to help anyway.

I’ll get a picture of the kitchen cabinets we’ve been working on for the last month and write up that post later if I have the time. They’re going to be beautiful.

Someday.

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In search of a Spring garden.

I took the little kids to pick out some flowers at our local nursery and let me say that it was so much more expensive than Lowe’s.  I am all for shopping locally but, seriously, it was prohibitively expensive and we’re on a budget around here so I can’t drop $300 for the same thing I can get at Lowe’s for $75. I just can’t.

So we did what we could and I let each kid pick out two small flower pots at the local place and decided we’ll have to head over to Lowe’s to get the rest later.

Jesse only wanted blue flowers and when he found them he was finished.  Lucy could have wandered around the nursery all day long talking to herself about how much she loves all the colors and smells.  Maggie just wanted to reorganize all the pansies and bring home one of everything.

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Just looking at this picture reminds me of how much I spent on some simple flowers and makes me cringe just a little but these three had a lot of fun and you can’t put a pricetag on that, right?
Actually, I can. And I did. And it was ridiculous.

 

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Out at the farm

We’ve been more busy than usual lately and while that means that I have much more to blog about, it also means I have less time to blog.  I used to be able to hammer out a blog post in 3.2 seconds flat but something happened to the writer in me and I am no longer able to do that for some reason.  I still love to write. I long to write. I just can’t seem to fit it in but where there is a will there is a way or some such nonsense, right?

We went to a friend’s farm on Saturday.  They weren’t in town but Kait was farm sitting and there were a ton of baby animals that Maggie just had to see.

She couldn’t even be bothered to stop for a picture because COWS! so I barely got this picture of Lucy and her.  She wasn’t able to hold still enough for more than that.

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Until we were getting ready to leave and she became very upset and made many statements about her feelings.

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“I just want to stay here with Kaity.”
“I just want to stay here and pet the cows.”
“I just want to stay here for a really, really long time.”

Turns out that all the mamas had put their babies down for their afternoon naps.  The sow was very protective over her piglets and you don’t mess with a mother pig. The calves were sleeping too and a couple of the mama cows made it quite clear that we’d better not wake their babies.  I experience this feeling every single day so I understood.

Kait said she was taking a picture of a different cow and this gal just walked up behind her and nudged her shoulder for a selfie.

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And she got some pictures of the babies while we weren’t there.

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The 1-year-old was clearly annoyed by his younger brothers’ antics.

And the piglets.  Kait said she sat on a fence at a safe distance because that’s a big angry pig right there.

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Hopefully, I’ll be able to take the younger kids back out there this week for a better look.

One particular cow took a liking to Rabbit.

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A serious liking.DSC_0486

She kept trying to rub her face on him and wrap herself around him. He told her he was a married man but it seems she took that as a challenge. It was quite humorous.

Joe met a Lady.
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Lady is a dog.  She’s a Great Pyrenees and she is so sweet and much larger than she looks in this picture.

Super friendly cow again.

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And Gabe with Lanie.  He was holding her most of the time so I could take pictures.

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She was super smiley until we took her over to see the animals. Then she just stared and stared at everything and everyone.

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Before we hiked it out to the animals I got a bunch of pictures of her being super happy and adorable in her new Carters duds.

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I’ll write about my new love for Carters and Oshkosh in another post because what they are doing in the T21 community really deserves some extra attention.

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She’s growing and learning and achieving milestones and I’m so proud of her.
And just like her typical counterparts she’s curious and wants what she wants…

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And often what she wants is to put leaves in her mouth so she is actively learning the word no.

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I had a picture of everybody walking out to the pasture but it disappeared and that is disappointing to me.

Can you tell I have a better camera? I appropriated one of Kait’s Nikons and now if I snap enough pictures I can usually get a few decent photos. That’s the type of photographer I am.  Just point and shoot and shoot and shoot.

And hope for the best.

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I remember being so excited about Kait losing her first tooth until she actually lost it and then I felt incredibly sad and ever since then, whenever one of my children gets that first loose, wiggly tooth, I get all excited with them on the outside while, really, I’m dying a little bit on the inside.

Today, Lucy lost her first baby tooth. Actually, it’s her second because she knocked out a tooth when she was 2 but it’s her first baby tooth to fall out and I’m feeling all sideways about it.

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You can see in the picture that she already has an adult tooth pushing through.

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My sweet baby girl is growing up so danged quickly and I cannot even stand it. I know that this is life and this is how it is supposed to happen.

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And I feel so blessed to be a part of it.

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But I don’t understand why losing baby teeth has to hit me so hard.

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The library and back again. A large family tale.

We went to the library today.  We haven’t been in years, not that we haven’t tried.  For some reason the library tends to call to us to make a visit on days when it’s closed for unscheduled librarian meetings or book inventory or we forget our proof of residency requirements. Again.

Today, however, we hit the jackpot.

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Not only was the library open, but we were able to get library cards and check out books.

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And the place was almost empty because public school was in session and homeschooling definitely has its perks in times like this.

Lucy was so confused by how the library worked.  I think she was trying to look at as many books as possible before we left because she didn’t realize that when I said we could borrow any books she wanted to read, she thought I meant just while we were there.  I figured it out after her 7th or 8th book and told her that she could pick some to take home.  Her intensity immediately calmed, she picked out 4 books to take home, then started showing Lanie some board books.

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Lanie was particularly fond of one particular book and spent about 5 minutes completely enthralled with it.

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She used up every bit of her energy on the little starfish page, which is funny because that’s one of her nicknames.

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Then melted into a pile of exhaustion, nursed for a few minutes, and fell asleep, which was appropriate because today is National Public Sleeping Day and we were in a public library and she was sleeping. I should have gotten a picture.

Matthew found a book quickly, then Maggie snapped him up to read something to her.

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Sam and Jesse were all but silent the entire time. Seriously. I showed Jesse where the dinosaur books were and he was content to quietly look at all of them one by one and Sam sat and read one book, the first in a new series he’s now excited about, the entire time we were there.

Other than Maggie being noisy and wanting to check out every single book in the juvenile section and stacking them in great piles while I was distracted by reading a ridiculous book to Lucy about a kid who ordered a penguin from Santa Claus (I’m sorry Librarian and I hope we got them put away properly), we had no anomalies while we were out and about. Unless you count our Whataburger experience. We don’t eat out often but when we do they never get our order right so a gold star goes to Whataburger for getting it correct the first time today.

And we’ve been home for about 2 hours now and I think we’ve managed not to destroy any borrowed materials yet so that’s new.

Before I go, I would like to make a public statement that I am firmly against not being able to check out reference books because when a teenage boy who has already graduated high school wants a math textbook for fun, you let him have a math textbook. And Ben wanted the Guinness Book of World Records but no, it was for in-library use only. I call foul on that one. What a dumb rule.

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28 degrees this morning. 20 freaking 8 degrees.

Being a military family, we’ve been stationed all over the United States. We’ve lived on both coasts, in the northwest, the southeast, New England (GO PATS!), and now we’re in northwest Florida. We’ve lived in Florida for 8 1/2 years now and this is the only place half of my children remember as being home so even though I’ve done my fair share of shoveling snow-covered driveways, starting the car to defrost a half hour before we have to go anywhere, thawing the tiny fingers and toes of children while they sip crock-pot cocoa, saying no for the tenth time to the 4 year old who is begging to go outside to make tunnels and snow forts even though he’s wearing a full leg cast after breaking his leg sledding, most of my kids have spent the bulk of their lifetimes living it up in sunny beach weather.

So I wasn’t surprised when Sam came running inside this morning with some sheets of glassy ice, completely amazed that everything had frozen overnight.

Mom, look! This is amazing!

There was one piece where there was a bee frozen inside but it broke and the bee was no longer encased before we could get a picture. Lucy(5) came back inside after about 2 minutes ripping her fuzzy gray jacket off proclaiming with irritation, this jacket is NOT KEEPING ME WARM!
I replied with, You might want to think about wearing shoes if you plan to go back outside.
Because she was barefoot. 

And Maggie(3) wore her warm boots like she was told and promptly lost them somewhere out in the backyard.

My kids definitely don’t know how to do winter.

In related news, it snowed briefly last night somewhere in our town. Joe saw the heavy flurries while he was at the gym but we didn’t see anything here at the house.

The frigid temps aren’t here for long, though. It should be back up in the 70’s by the end of the week and I am definitely looking forward to that.

 

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