Adelie and Staley's World

Adelie and Staley's World

Monday, October 31, 2016

Wednesday, October 26, 2016

Said No One Ever

I really love it when I spend an hour making a healthy, delicious, well-rounded meal for my family that all 3 of my kids complain about...said no one ever.

I really love it when my kids use words like disgusting, yucky, and gross to describe how the meals I make look, smell, and/or taste...said no one ever.

I really love it when my youngest child who can't yet use words like disgusting, yucky, and gross, just throws his food on the floor...said no one ever.

I really love it when tears are shed about having to eat the meal that I fixed...said no one ever.

I really love it when eating a miniscule pile of veggies can involve 30 minutes of whining, complaining, and gagging...said no one ever.

Maybe tomorrow we'll just eat out.

Monday, October 24, 2016

Question of the Day

Why is it that my only child who doesn't like haircuts is the one that needs them the most often?

Luckily he gets over it quickly and looks like a super-cute big boy when it's all over.

Sunday, October 23, 2016

Coming Home

There are certain places that hold so many good memories, it's hard not to consider them home.  Greenville College is one of those places for me.  Although it's been 15 years since I graduated, being back on campus made many of those moments seem like just yesterday.

This was my first time back in Greenville in at least 12 years.  Many things have changed.  There are buildings that are gone, including the houses I lived in my junior and senior years.  There are buildings that are new.  There are buildings that appear to have moved.  My friends and I kept saying things like, "Wasn't that house on the other side of the street?" or "Was the rec center always that close to the library?"  The campus seemed smaller than we remembered it, but so much is still the same.  Same dorms.  Same library.  Same student union.  Same weight room.  Same way that everyone smiled at us as we walked around campus and greeted us like friends.

Yesterday was Greenville Homecoming.  In the midst of all the homecoming celebrations, there was a cross country reunion to celebrate 60 years of cross country at GC.  Cross country and track were a huge part of my college life.  So many hours spent practicing.  So many week-ends spent traveling to meets.  Cross country brought so many amazing people into my life.  It gave me my best friends.  My roommates.  My housemates.  The love I have for my college home cannot be separated from the love I have for my cross country team.

Yesterday was my Greenville home coming.  I enjoyed hanging out at the football game.  I had fun reminiscing with old teammates at the cross country reunion.  But the highlight was having a day with my friends.  Piecing together memories as we walked around campus.  Laughing about what we remembered, and what we forgot, as we drove past all our old haunts.  Just sitting at the park where we ran so many of our cross country practices and meets, talking about our lives, both past and present.  It was such a fun day of remembering what brought us together and once again realizing why we have stayed together. It's because it feels like home.

Wednesday, October 19, 2016

Little Moments

Not every moment in our days is noteworthy.  There are moments that are exasperating or disappointing or difficult or teachable.  But there are so many of the little moments in our days that just fill my heart and make me smile.

Moments like...

how Briggs walks into a room with something he's found, smiles big, and says "TA-DA!"

how Adelie says, "You're the best mom in all the world" (although she has learned to say this with a sweet smile and a hug when she is getting in trouble.)

how Staley quietly slips out of her chair and runs over to me to give me a big hug when I volunteer in her classroom

how Briggs always wants his turn to talk during our dinner conversation.  Each night at dinner, we ask the kids what was best in their day, if anything bad happened, and what they learned.  Briggs will always say, "Briggy's turn."  When we ask him, "What was the best part of your day?", he always answers "School bus."  (Seeing the bus?  Playing with his bus?  It's hard to say.)  Then when we ask if anything bad happened, he generally says, "School bus fall over.  Fire truck fall over."  (Not exactly sure where this comes from, but appropriately would fall into the bad category.)  And  then if we ask if he learned anything, sometimes he says, "No" and sometimes he says, "Sure" , but never elaborates.   I'm not sure how much of this ritual he actually understands, but he always wants to make sure he has his turn.

how Adelie always gives Staley a big hug when we drop her off at school and again when we pick her up.

how when Staley gets money for losing her teeth (she's down 3 now), she includes the things she wants to buy for Adelie and Briggs into her plans for spending her money.  Of course, she has not quite figured out just how much, or little, you can actually get for 8 quarters.

how Briggs and Adelie get so excited about taking Staley to school each morning.  Adelie always wants to bring something from home to show to Staley's teacher, while Briggs can't wait to see the buses and go into her classroom to see the fish tank.  Drop off time is a highlight of the day for both of them.

how Staley and Adelie play and play and play and play together on week-end mornings when they get up.  Since they don't get as much time to play together during the week, they wake up so excited to play together on the week-ends.  Sometimes it's hard to get them to stop for a mid-morning breakfast.

how all 3 kids will sit together so nicely to look at a book or watch an after-rest television show.  It's so cute to see all 3 of them sitting side by side on the couch.

how Staley and Adelie get so amused by the cute little things Briggs says or does.  They will just giggle and giggle whenever he does something cute or funny.  And, of course, he loves to make his sisters laugh.

how Staley loves to play art class with Adelie, and how Adelie is getting to be much better at drawing because of this.

how Adelie is getting better at writing her name, but she still doesn't identify the letters.  She can tell you how to spell her name, but when writing it, she'll ask "what comes next?  The one with the 3 lines or the one with the big curve?"

how Briggs will say, "Momma.  Snuggle."  and then when I pick him up, he will immediately put his thumb in his mouth and lie his head on my shoulder.

how Staley reads a book to us every night at bedtime and how she always wants to sit on my lap while she reads it.

There are so many little moments like this in each day that I want to hold onto and cherish.  I'm okay with forgetting the diaper changes and tears and whining and attitude.  But these moments...

these moments fill my heart and I never want to forget them.

Saturday, October 15, 2016


It's been well-documented that I love fall.  L-O-V-E, love.  I love the cooler weather, the changing leaves, the sweatshirts, the boots, hayrack rides, pumpkin farms.  It always reminds me of the excitement at the beginning of each school year, of cross country season, of Friday night football games.  With all the beautiful weather, and the impending cold of winter, we've been taking advantage of lots of outdoor fall fun.

Briggs, Caroline, and Adelie playing in the rain at the Farm Park.  This was the highlight of our last Farm Park trip of the season for our happy, soaking wet kids.

Enjoying time with cousins at the Community Bash at Aunt Jill's church.  Everything here was a hit, from the bouncy houses to the horse rides to the face painting to the hayrack ride.  We even passed up bedtime so that we could stay and enjoy the fireworks.

Watching the Homecoming parade is always a fall highlight.

Family time at Rader Family Farm.  Briggs LOVES this little barrel train ride.  After riding with Staley initially, he then rode it by himself over and over and over.  We've been here 3 times so far this season, and this is by far his favorite activity.

Family hikes in the woods is one of my favorite fall activities.  ("Hiking" is a pretty strong word for what we do, but it sounds better than slow, meandering, frequent-stops walk.) 

Enjoying festivities before the Eureka rodeo.  We were going to just let the girls ride the ponies while Briggs and Zach went to check out the tractors, but as they were walking away, Briggs kept saying, "Ride horsey.  Ride horsey."  And he thoroughly enjoyed riding the horsey.

Adelie and Briggs both enjoyed their first trip to Tanner's Orchard.  Adelie loved running around on top of the hay bales that made the little straw maze.  Briggs was enamored of the tractor and the school bus and the digger and the combine and the train that you could sit on and in.  As we were leaving, he said good-bye to each of these.  "Bye-bye, train.  Bye-bye, bus.  Bye-bye, tractor.  Bye-bye, digger."  So cute!!

Whether we're at a pumpkin farm, going to the park, or just playing in the yard, we've been enjoying our fall so far.  Here's hoping it lasts a lot, lot, lot longer.  Like maybe until April.


This morning, the kids were playing in the girls room.  Adelie was playing a game with her figurines and a doll bunk bed, sorting her figurines onto the top or bottom bunk.  Briggs walked over and put one of his toys on the top bunk.  Adelie reprimanded him, "You can't put that there!  The top bunk is only for people from Hawaii and the bottom bunk is only for people from Australia."

I guess if my daughter is going to play segregation games, I'm glad it's that well-accepted divide between the Hawaiians and the Australians.

Friday, October 14, 2016

They Say...

Last night at dinner, Staley was talking about a girl who was mean to her at recess.  After empathizing, we asked her, "Are you ever mean to anybody?"  Staley emphatically answered, "No."  Then Adelie piped in and said, "You're mean to me.  You were mean to me this morning."  Then she proceeded to explain exactly what Staley did that morning that was mean. 

Adelie is consistently asking us if things are real.  I'm not sure if she just has a hard time differentiating fiction from reality or if she just needs to see it to believe.  We've told her that monsters aren't real and unicorns aren't real and fairies aren't real.  She knows that cartoons and some of the things we read in books aren't real.  But she is constantly asking things like, "Are sharks real?"  or "Are mushrooms real?" or "Are the Chicago Bears real?"  I'm also pretty sure she thinks that when Zach and I wear our Bear's jerseys, we are actually part of the team.  I guess at 3 life can still be a little confusing.

Briggs is talking so much now.  I love it!!  He is currently trying to figure out counting and colors.  He can count to about 13 or 14, but will often start with 6 or 7.  He will also sometimes count in circles, like starting at 6, counting to 13, and then circling back to 6 and starting again.  He is also starting to understand colors.  He knows the names of colors, but has not quite figured out how to pair the right color with the object.  He primarily tells us that things are yellow or green.  The girls always get the giggles when Briggs guesses colors wrong.  Like if they ask him what color his grape is and he answers "yellow."  And then they'll ask him what color a bus is and he'll answer "green."  Definitely still a work in progress.

Tonight Briggs was playing with his Little People bus in the girls' room at bedtime.  I told him, "It's time to put away your bus.  It's bedtime."  I picked up Briggs and said, "We're going to go in your room for bedtime books.  Say good-night."  Zach, Adelie, and Staley were all in the room, looking at him expectantly.  Instead, Briggs looked right at his toys and said, "Night, night bus.  Night, night people." 

My kids always keep me laughing.
And that's for real.

Thursday, October 13, 2016


Zach and I made our debut on national television on Sunday afternoon.

 It was a reality show.

The reality of it was that we were rooting for a losing team.

Saturday, October 8, 2016

The Little Moments

Seeing all 3 of my kids "reading" their new library books in the stroller on our way home from the library was one of those little moments in my day that just made me smile.

Wednesday, October 5, 2016

Question of the Day

Why is it that my saying, "I didn't ask you to sing in the mirror.  I asked you to please brush your teeth" has to become a normal part of our morning routine?

This.  This is why.
Kindergarten has taught her many things.  Being speedy is not one of them.
Slow or fast, I sure do love this girl!

Monday, October 3, 2016

Not a Surprise

Today Adelie and I had this conversation:

Me:  "Guess what tomorrow is?  Pre-school day!!"
Adelie:  "I like pre-school."
Me:  "I know you do."
Adelie:  "Do you know what I don't like at pre-school?"
Me:  "No.  What don't you like?"
Adelie:  "I don't like quiet book time."
Me:  "Why don't you like quiet book time?"
Adelie:  "Because I don't like sitting down and being quiet."

Nope.  Not surprising at all.

Sunday, October 2, 2016

3 for 3

When Zach and I were preparing for our Hawaii trip, the girls were so excited about the prospect of having the whole week with both sets of grandparents.  They couldn't wait for us to leave.  At the time, Briggs didn't understand what was happening and couldn't verbalize his feelings about it either way.  I like to think that he would have said, "Don't go, Mama.  I'll miss you too much."

This afternoon, he made his feelings perfectly clear.  My parents stopped by as we were finishing lunch.  After lunch, Briggs said, "Grammie.  Come.  Play room.  Sit."  So Briggs and my mom walked into the playroom and sat down to play.  The rest of us followed them in there.  Looking up, Briggs said, "Bye-bye, Mama.  Bye-bye, Dada."

So even my baby boy has decided that grandparents trump parents.

Ouch, buddy.

Money Talk

Staley lost another tooth this week-end.  She got 8 quarters under her pillow.  I heard her telling Adelie, "I got 8 monies.  I think that's a dollar."

Later Zach and Staley were discussing how many quarters make a dollar.  Zach pulled out 8 more quarters from the coin jar to illustrate his lesson.  After they were done with the little math lesson, Staley picked up the quarters off the table and put them in her pocket.  They had this conversation:
Staley:  "I'm going to buy something with this."
Zach:  "You're going to buy something with my money?"
Staley:  "It's not your money.  It's everybody's money."
Zach:  "No, it's my money."
Staley:  "I think it was my reward for doing so well in the math game."
Zach:  "I never said that."
Staley:  "Well I said it."

That's one way to make some money.  I love my little gal who boldly makes her own rules.

This afternoon during rest time, Staley was making tickets for a show that she is planning.  When she was showing them to me, each ticket had a number and some of the tickets had a face on them.  Staley explained to me, "The tickets with the happy face are on sale.  The tickets with no face are the normal price.  And the tickets with the sad face are really expensive."  It would be nice if stores employed that system.  It would make it much easier to know if you're getting a good deal.

I love seeing the world through the eyes of my children.  Life is so much more fun that way!!

Tender Heart

Adelie is my brave, confident little girl.  She makes friends wherever we go.  Little kids, big kids, grown-ups--it doesn't really matter.  The other day at a college soccer game, she sat right down next to two college guys and struck up a conversation.  She embraces new situations, keeps up with her big sister and older cousins, and has been loving having her "own" thing (pre-school/gymnastics).  When we watch movies, Staley will cover her eyes and ears during "scary" parts while Adelie will watch them and tell Staley when they're over.  As brave and confident as she is, she is also so sweet and tender.  She is always ready with a sweet compliment and a big hug.  And just as Staley does not like the scary parts in movies, Adelie doesn't like the sad parts.  After taking the girls to see "Finding  Dory" in the theater, Adelie told us that she didn't like it because it was sad.  And the other night we watched "The Lorax."  When the last of the truffula trees was chopped down and all the animals were sent  away, Adelie's eyes teared up and her lip quivered as she asked, "Why is everyone so sad?  I don't like this part."  So Adelie can bravely handle the scary, but her tender heart can't take the sad.

I love all the little things that make Adelie who she is.  I love how brave and confident she is, but I also love her sweet, sweet heart.

My little sweet heart