I took the kids to Ohio to visit our Gorman family last week. We haven't been back in a really long time. My people had a few days off from school and we decided to spend our break with our cousins.
We stayed at Dan and Misty's house and had a three-day sleepover.
We didn't tell Misty's kids that we were coming, so they were really surprised to see us standing at the bus stop. My people loved the idea of being someone's surprise and spent the entire drive asking me how long until we would be there and checking my estimates against the clock. We had to get there before 4:00! Run, Mom, run! Drive faster!
While we were there we played like crazy people, went to the science center, and had a small party so that we could see the rest of the Gorman Clan. We were sad to leave. Everyone was sad -- we even extended our visit by a few hours to try and make some people happy again before we left.
Sarah had to be home by 5:00 on Friday for a birthday party and we made it ... just in time. I didn't even drive home first! I took her straight to the party before we picked up Riley and before we went to our house. It was paper-thin timing ... just the way we like it!
Paige is very generous. She is always giving her things away and she's always willing to share. She's quite nice in this way.
Recently, she gave a couple of buckets to Sarah and Nate and let them go "shopping" in her bedroom. Everything was free and they were allowed to take anything they wanted -- short of Sam Johnson and her CD player.
This is a video of Nate telling me all about his shopping experience.............
For Christmas this year we bought a Flip video camera. Actually, we bought TWO! I bought one and later found out that Frank bought one also. Great minds and all....
It's an adorable little thing and you might expect that its teeny tiny cuteness would inspire me to make a few videos, but you'd be wrong. I rarely remember that the thing is here. I like it, but I'm more attached to my Nikon!
Frank, on the other hand, is all about the videos. He is the one who remembers to dump the videos onto the computer. He's the one making DVDs for the kids to watch. He's the guy.
I actually did make a few videos recently and today is the day that I'm finally going to figure out how to post them to my blog. Lucky you.
This is a video of Paige showing me a puppet that she made. She makes reference to an old video of her telling me that she loves Pink Food. You can see a bunch of our old old videos here!
Do you occasionally skip meals? I do it all the time. On the weekend, we'll have breakfast and then get so busy that the whole day goes by and, suddenly, it's dinner time.
Don't get me wrong. I'm positive that there are plenty of snacks in the middle for the kids (and adults), but no formal sit-down meal.
My kids can't handle this. It disrupts the order of their day. They don't at all seem to mind skipping the meal at the time of the skipping, but when I announce that it's time for the next meal they all freak out, "What about lunch? I didn't even eat lunch!" or "Breakfast! I didn't eat breakfast!" It brings them to a halt. They can't seem to get over it and then they demand the skipped meal -- even if I am in the process of handing them the current meal. It's crazy to me.
Yesterday, Paige missed breakfast. We went through our day without incident. At dinnertime, however, she figured out that she missed breakfast (ten hours earlier!) and couldn't quite settle in to eat her dinner.
I ended up feeding them breakfast for dinner just to keep the peace.
I was reading a cooking blog recently (www.101cookbooks.com) and found a recipe for "Amazing Black Bean Brownies" and couldn't resist checking it out. This lady takes great photos and -- in my opinion -- great photos can make any food look tasty (How do you like MY picture?). Anyway, I decided to try them.
I made them yesterday and the kids LOVE them. They are very dense, very sweet, and chocolatey. I have to assume from the ingredients that they are healthier than most of the sweets my people want to eat so I'm not feeling too guilty about letting them eat them.
Sarah said that they are the best brownies ever.
Here's a link to the recipe ... in case you are feeling brave:
My people all had Valentine's Day parties in school today. I did not go to Nate's. Sarah's was in the morning and Paige's was in the afternoon. I took Paige to Sarah's and Nate to Paige's -- it's just the way it worked out ... I have different people home at different times.
Nate hates to go to these parties. The last time we went he said to me, "Mom? Which would you rather do: go to one of the girls' parties or get a really bad boo boo?" I said I'd rather go to a party. He said, "I'd rather have a boo boo."
We've had a lot of snow this year. I'm sure I've mentioned this before. Last weekend it finally warmed up enough for us to go outside and try to smash up the inches of ice on our driveway. It was a beautiful day.
Last week was the North Hill Elementary School Science Fair. Sarah was super gung-ho to do something -- she knew exactly what she wanted to do from the moment I mentioned the fair to her. She wanted to make stains and wash them out. Basically, we tested laundry detergents.
We invited Paige to help, but she was not interested. The conversation was something like this...
Me: Paige, do you want to help cut out these cards?
Me: Paige, do you want to help Sarah glue things to her board?
Me: Paige, if you don't help Sarah with this project I can not put your name on it. It's not fair for Sarah to do all the work and for you to get your name on it. I'm going to take your name off of the project.
End of conversation.
Sarah, on the other hand was so excited to work on her project that, after I told her that it would take all day to do it, she woke me up at 6 AM to get started! She didn't want to waste a minute. I wanted to waste a few minutes ... at least the minutes between, say, 6AM and 10AM!
Here's my lady and her project. She was convinced that hers would be the most popular with the mommies. I think she was right.
Paige is a Daisy. Daisies are kindergarten-aged Girl Scouts. So far, it's the only extra curricular activity that has held her interest for more than a few sessions.
Earlier this month there was a Daisy 'sleepover' for all of the Daisies in our town. It was actually in the middle of the day, but they each had a sleeping bag and jammies and they did sleepover style activities. No actual sleeping happened.
Paige hated the Daisy sleepover.
Here are a few pictures. Tell me if you can see the hatred and disinterest in her eyes!
Whenever they see a flock of birds flying through the sky they all stop to watch the 'bird ballet'.
Today we were out and there was a gigantic bird ballet in the sky and, as usual, they all stopped to watch. Sarah piped in with "Well, you know that they are flying around together and landing all bunched together because they are trying to distribute their body heat and keep themselves warm." Imagine that.
It's been a long long cold snowy winter here in Michigan. For sure. The kids had a few days off of school and we had itchy suitcases. We had to go somewhere! We chose Arizona to visit Uncle chris, Aunt Lori, and Baby Henry.
We stayed for only five days but we did a bunch of fun stuff and enjoyed our visit. The kids loved the warm weather (so did the grown-ups) and we took them to quite a few parks, on a horseback riding trip (two of them for Sarah), to the Crosanti bell factory, and to the children's museum.
I took 598 photos while we were there. I've whittled down the pack to my favorite 79. You can see them all here: Arizona Photos 2009.
If you are not interested in seeing eighty photos of the Gormans on vacation, here are just a few highlights: