Adelie and Staley's World

Adelie and Staley's World

Monday, November 28, 2016

Life's Disappointments

Tonight at dinner, we had this conversation:

Staley:  "What are we having for dinner tomorrow?"
Me:  "I'm not exactly sure, but I do have some chicken defrosting in the fridge."
Adelie:  "FROSTING?!?!"

Oh, the disappointment when she found out that frosting was not, in fact, our main course for dinner tomorrow.

Sunday, November 27, 2016

Keeping You Humble

The other night when Zach got home from work, Adelie exclaimed, "Daddy, you look really handsome!"  Then Staley chimed in, "Yeah, but handsome people usually have hair."

One day this past week I went running in some colorful running tights.  When I came home, Adelie said, "Your pants look like cotton candy.  But they smell like stinky, yucky cheese."

Adelie was playing with one of Zach's hats the other day.  She told him, "This hat smells like you."  Zach said, "What do I smell like?'' Adelie's response?  "Dirt."

The other morning, the girls and I were playing a game where we'd draw something and the other two would have to guess what you were drawing.  I drew an elephant, and Adelie commented, "You are good at drawing elephants.  Except for the trunk.  You are really bad at that."

Nothing like the honesty of kids to keep you humble.

Thursday, November 24, 2016

Happy Thanksgiving!

Nothing says "Happy Thanksgiving" like a girl in a turkey hat.
Just one of the many reasons I have to be so, so thankful.

Wednesday, November 23, 2016

Sibling Love

Our life is chaotic.  It's loud and messy and crazy and busy.  Someone always needs something.  Always.  Restaurant outings are a circus.  I have to gear myself up for grocery trips.  Laundry is an every night occurrence.  I generally sink onto the couch exhausted at the end of the day.  Life right now makes me tired, but I wouldn't trade it for anything.  And it's moments like these that make it all worth it...

Staley reading books to Briggs in his crib

Adelie and Briggs holding hands in the car

All the kids working together to push/pull the pumpkin wagon at the pumpkin farm

Sister love on the hayrack ride

Adelie and Briggs looking at Adelie's Disney autograph book together

It's little moments like when Staley went to the "Caught Being Good Store" at school and used her caring coupons to buy herself a prize, but also one for Adelie and Briggs.  How Adelie will go into Briggs' room when he wakes up and play with him in his crib until we can come in to get him up.  How Briggs and Adelie both give Staley big hugs when we drop her off at school.  It's those moments when the kids are playing so nicely together or snuggling together on the couch or making things for each other that just fill my heart to the brim.  Yes, there is chaos.  Yes, there is tattling and whining and fighting.  But there is also love.  So much love.


Our newest niece (and cousin) Lucy Magnolia.

The girls showered her with love...and drawings, school projects, and a homemade macaroni necklace.  This was about as excited as she got about all the gifts and attention.

The girls kept taking turns holding her, while Briggs showed her his race car and tickled her feet.  Then he proceeded to climb into the window of the hospital room to watch all the cars in the parking lot.  For Briggs, watching trucks and cars drive around a parking lot definitely trumps looking at a sleeping baby.

What an adorable, snuggly, lovely new addition to our family.

Thursday, November 17, 2016

In Her Head

I am very proud of my kids and many of the things that they do, say, and are.  I never want to brag, but I do want to remember great things they do, accomplishments they have, and what they are able to do at different times in their lives.  This is one of those times.  Consider yourself warned.

Staley has always been academically bright.  She talked early, learned quickly, and has an amazing memory.  Just 3 months into Kindergarten, she has mastered her sight words for the year, is reading Easy Reader books more and more fluently, and loves to write notes, signs, cards, and books.  But it is her mastery of math skills that often astounds me.  One day a few months ago, on her way to and from the doctor for her flu shot, Staley decided that she wanted to count to 1,000 by ones.  She made it to 1,069 by the time we got home.  She can also count by twos, fives, tens, and hundreds.  Without much teaching from us, Staley has figured out addition and subtraction and can do some pretty complex figuring in her head, including some early multiplication. 

The other night at dinner, the girls were talking about Noah's ark.  Without any prompting from us, Staley said, "If there were 5 different kinds of animals two by two, that would be 10 animals altogether.  If you took away one type of animal, then there would be 8 animals."

And the other day walking home from school, Staley amazed Zach with this conversation.  Staley asked Zach, "How much older are you than Emma [Zach's cousin who baby-sits for the kid]?"  Zach told her that he was 20 years older than Emma.  Staley was silent for a minute or two.  Then she said, "Emma is 13 years older than me."  Surprised, Zach said, "That's right.  How did you know that?"  Staley responded, "Well, you said you are 20 years older than her and you are 38, so that means she's 18.  I'm 5 so she is 13 years older than me."  Getting the right answer was impressive and the addition and subtraction needed to get that answer was pretty advanced, but the logic she used to figure that out in her head was the most astounding to me.  She obviously gets her math skills from her father.

There are so many things that matter.  There are so many things I want to teach my kids.  I am more concerned about my kids being kind than being smart.  But if they can be both, that's okay too.

My 2 favorite math-minded pumpkin heads.

Tuesday, November 15, 2016

Bad Words

The other night at dinner, Staley mentioned that sometimes other kids say "stupid" and "butt", which are words we don't say at our house.  I explained that different families have different rules, and our family chooses not to use those words.  Then Staley said, "There is one word that I say that you don't say, but I don't think it's a bad word."  I was a little anxious, wondering what it might be and hoping that we wouldn't have to have a more serious talk about bad words.  I asked, "What is it?"  Staley responded, "You always call it a backpack, but I say book bag."

Book bag?  I think I can handle that.

Love this sweet girl!

Friday, November 11, 2016

Family Fun

You know those times when you have a plan and it doesn't work out the way you expected, but then it ends up being even better.  Last week-end was one of those times for us.  I had been intending all fall to take the kids to Wildlife Prairie Park so Briggs could ride the train.  I knew he would love it, and I was excited to share that with him.  Last Saturday we decided to venture over there for a morning of family fun.  When we got there and drove straight to the train depot, we found out the train is closed for the season.  I was more than bummed.  I was so disappointed and I couldn't seem to shake that feeling.  I lamented the fact that we'd even come at all.  But then we had the best time!

Briggs found a little train to play in and he was more than satisfied.  The kids played at several different playgrounds and found so many fun, new things to do.

There were a number of different statues that the kids all wanted to sit on and climb on and get their picture on.  Of course, I told Adelie to smile for her picture.  She said, "I'm not going to smile.  I'm only going to do this" (and then proceeded to make the face above) every time I tried to take her picture.  *sigh*

For the first time EVER in all my trips to Wildlife Prairie Park, all the animals were out and active and so fun to watch.  The wolves were howling, the bear was foraging, the otters were swimming, the badger was digging.  We had so much fun finding and watching all the animals.

The highlight for Staley was the park map.  She had THE. BEST. TIME reading the park map, directing us and telling us what animal we should be seeing next.  We had to prompt her to put down the map to see the actual animals.  I think one of my highlights was watching her have such a good time with that map.  She brought it home and put it directly into her "special things" box.

Just when I had almost convinced myself that this trip was going to be a disappointment, it ended up being one of our best family outings ever!!

Tuesday, November 8, 2016

Election Day

Today is election day.  And even though the thought of either one of our two primary presidential candidates being the leader of the free world makes me feel sick to my stomach, I still think it's necessary for our children to see us exercising our right to vote.  This morning Zach was educating Adelie on voting and the election.  He talked about the president and congress and that they are the leaders of the country that make the rules.  Zach finished telling her all this, and Adelie was silent for awhile, mulling it over.  Then they had this conversation:

Adelie:  "I want to be the presenter."
Zach:  "Do you mean the president?"
Adelie:  "Yeah, that!  I want to be that."
Zach:  "Well that's great, but you have to be a grown-up to be president.  You'll have to wait until you are older.  But by tomorrow morning, we'll know who our new leaders are."
After a short pause, Adelie asked, "Will it be me?"

Unfortunately no.  Although I have no doubt that Adelie has more integrity, honesty, and maturity than either of our presidential candidates.

Monday, November 7, 2016

Remember When...

Remember when all my kids would sleep until at least 7 or 8 in the morning every single morning, usually soundly sleeping until I'd have to wake them up for Staley to get ready for school?  Remember how Adelie was napping really consistently and how every day during naptime, I'd have an hour or two of total silence to get things done while Staley was at school?

Then remember how a few weeks ago Adelie stopped napping?  And remember how we just had the time change and Adelie's been up around 6 the past two mornings?  Remember how my hour or two of naptime silence has now turned into about 5 minutes before I hear the pitter patter of little feet on the stairs?  And remember how waking to my soft, melodic alarm clock has now been replaced by waking to a foot in the ribs as my daughter climbs over me to get into my bed?

Remember how I like it better when everyone just sleeps?

Tuesday, November 1, 2016


It involves imagination and creating and dressing up and parties and candy.  No wonder Halloween is one of my kids' favorite holidays.  And this year was no exception.

In years past, Staley has changed her mind hundreds of times about what she wants to be for Halloween.  This year, she decided a month ago that she wanted to be Supergirl and never wavered once.  So thankful that Uncle Evan and his artistic abilities came through with a stellar Supergirl logo on her shirt.

Adelie initially decided that she wanted to be a worm for Halloween.  I talked her out of that.  She then decided that she'd like to be a grasshopper.  Really??  I wasn't sure how to make that happen either, so when I found the wings and antennae in our dress-up box, I offered up a ladybug.  Luckily, she accepted.

I had initially hoped to work off Staley's Supergirl theme and make all my kids super heroes.  However, since Adelie was preoccupied with this bug idea, I was already down one kid.  And Briggs doesn't actually know who any superheroes are.  However, he is a big fan of Paw Patrol and we already had a fire hat in the dress up box, so we went with Marshall instead.  Briggs seemed pleased.

As is our usual routine, the girls attended the Pumpkin Patch party the week-end before Halloween at our church.  And, as usual, they came home with lots of prizes, inordinate amounts of candy, and yummy goodies from the cake walk.  Adelie also came home with a few missing ladybug spots, making me re-examine how I attached them to her shirt to ensure they lasted through a few more Halloween festivities.

We also got together with my side of the family to celebrate October birthdays.  Since it was close to Halloween, the kids all showed off their costumes.

Both girls also had Halloween parties at their schools.  I helped at both parties, but since I was preoccupied with leading 3 year olds in games and monitoring Kindergarteners bowling with pumpkins,  I totally forgot to take any pictures.  Oops.  Luckily, another pre-school mom shared this photo with me.

The night before Halloween, we started a new tradition of carving pumpkins.  Both girls drew on their pumpkin faces for us to carve out for them. 

Adelie was adamant that she wanted to pick out a green pumpkin at the pumpkin patch.  And she was convinced that she drew her jack-o-lantern face to look just like Ariel.

Staley drew hers to look like Elsa, complete with a side braid.  She also wanted her name carved in the top.

And, much like a fairy Godmother, Zach turned Briggs' pumpkin into a coach.  More specifically, 'Da Coach.'

All that and we still hadn't even made it to Halloween yet.  On Halloween, Staley got to wear her costume to school and enjoy her school Halloween party.  After we picked up Staley from school, we visited the library, Great Grams and Nana at the nursing home, Uma and Papa's shop, and Aunt Sandi's house to show off costumes and get some treats.  Then, after dinner, we enjoyed a warm and beautiful night as we trick or treated around the block, visiting with neighbors and friends.

Grandpa joined us for the trick or treating fun.

It didn't take Briggs long to figure out trick or treating.  At the first house, we prompted Briggs to say "trick or treat."  He was excited to pick a candy out of the bowl, and then was even more excited when our neighbor said, "Take a couple."  By the next house, Briggs held out his hand and said, "Candy.  Couple."  A little more direct than "trick or treat", but it got the same outcome.

Hooray for another fun Halloween!!

Or as Briggs would say, "Happy Ween."