Weekend project

These are the steps from the garage to the mud room.  No reason for them to be anything other than plain wooden steps.  Unless one wants to jazz them up, and paint little tootsies to have for a long time.  So that's what we did.  A coat of (very yucky) oil based paint, then the black, then the fun part.

 Then a little help from Nana to write names and add a fun element of clear dots.

And we have an adorable stairwell.


April 23

April 23 will be the most bittersweet day of the year for me, always. Two years ago we stepped off the plane with our daughter and went home to become a new family. Our flight got in so late so Jack was the only one that met us at the airport, with Brian, my mom, stepdad, dad and some friends. I will never forget seeing Jack. It was the first time I had left my kids for more than 48 hours. He ran to me, I ran to him and after a seriously long embrace he scooped up his sister. It was priceless. And within 24 hours, all 4 kids were in the bathtub in smiles and we began our new life.

Here is Anna just an hour after she was given to us. Such a scared little girl.

And here is my baby today. I took these pictures this morning. She is not a scared little girl at all. She is full of spunk and fits in this crazy family beautifully.

April 23rd is also my dad's birthday. This is the first without him. He would have been 70 today. This was just last year on his birthday. He had been craving a hamburger from a certain place and we surprised him and took him to lunch there. When my brother was driving him there he thought he was going to the doctor :( but was so thrilled to see us all. Just over a month later he passed away. This is the last picture of him with my kids. And I'm sad about that . But so happy to celebrate for Anna.


4 year olds or 4th graders

I know I've written about our elementary school before. Jack's class followed our journey to China and Anna was an instant superstar when she got home. The littles continue to be a popular crowd there. The reality is I love this school. From the incredible principal to the amazing teachers, I could not as a parent ask for anything more. We are a tiny community and this school is a dream. My littles play on the playground after we drop off Jack and Callie and this past week the 4th graders came out immediately to burn some energy before testing. The gym teachers could have said to please go ahead and take my littles ones but instead they were allowed to participate with the 4th graders, day after day. I can't even express how awesome this was and how it is just another example of our close knit school and how wonderful this school is. Carter and Anne LOVED this and thought they were so cool.

And Jack is so sweet. He could have been thoroughly embarrassed by his mom taking pics and his siblings getting so much attention but he embraces it. Yet another reason why he is such a great kid.

On top of everything that happens inside, it is picturesque outside as well.

Lucky for me I have a lot of years ahead here!


A week of randomness

This past weekend, both Jack and Callie had swim meets. Brian took Jack to his meet which was out of town and Callie, the littles and I stayed home. So Carter and Anna had yet another weekend of sitting on a gym floor during Callie's meet Saturday and Sunday. And while it's a lot to ask of 4 year olds to sit and hang out for hours, these guys are troopers. When I came back from watching one of Callie's races, this is what I came back to. Anna had her little arm around Carter and they were all nuzzled up with each other, melts my heart.
Despite the fact that it has been in the 80's for a while, we had a huge weekend of rain and storms and everyone was "freezing." So we turned on the fireplace and bundled up. And yes it's April.

I know I've mentioned before but I love our preschool. The littles had been reading fairy tales and just read Jack and the Beanstalk. They planted seeds at school and brought them home when they had sprouted. They were so eager to plant them, insisting the stalk would grow to the sky and we would find the pot of gold. So we did and for now I'm all about their little minds believing in something so wonderful.

What to do when it's raining outside with no end in sight. Paint. Not on paper but each other.

Simply precious. Funny that I walked into his room about an hour after bedtime, turned on the light and snapped this picture. Even funnier that since the storms over the weekend he hasn't done much sleeping in this bed. He seems to think mine is much cozier.

Hope your having a great week!


6 a.m. Satuday morning

A dream doesn't become reality through magic; it takes sweat, determination and hard work.

Colin Powell