Friday, February 13, 2009

January Update

I guess I'm a "once-every-few-months update" blogger at the moment. We've been pretty busy enjoying life and kids and projects.

I'll start the month with a few sideways pics. I need to work with them and get them oriented, but I've been holding off posting for too long because of my perfectionistic tendencies, and it's time to just go for it ( apologies for crooked pics. :-)

I have a favorite group of pictures of Jeremy with each of our kids from about this age. I might (in about 20 years, when I have time :-) post all of them together to compare our children as 6-9-month-olds. Of course, Ascha's not out of the stage yet, so I might take some I like even better, but so far, these are a few of my favorites. :-)

I haven't updated about the house in a long time. It's extremely liveable and Jeremy keeps plugging away at the trimwork whenever he has a spare moment. The only major interior project left is the tiling of the master bath and shower. Here is a pic of our completed dining room:

Now, on to the "kid updates." :-) Taylor is a very creative 6-year-old and when he puts his mind to something, he does an excellent job. In a recent example, he has been getting Highlights magazine for a few months (thanks, Great Grama and Great Papa! :-). After seeing the reader-submitted page, he decided he'd submit a drawing. He sat down, got right to work, and quickly presented "Rainbow in a Race." We took a picture of it, then sent it off to Highlights. Who knows whether or not they'll eventually publish it, but he got a very official letter thanking him for the submission and telling him that his art made the editors happy. That made his day.
Taylor has also been participating in a recreational wrestling program during January and February. Unfortunately, his one big meet was last Saturday but he had to miss it due to a fever. He still LOVES to wrestle Dad and Aric for fun but is a bit burned out regarding the official sport at the moment. It has been a good foundational year, though, and he understands a bit more what the sport is really about.
Taylor is doing great at school. He's come out of his shell a lot and we've been really pleased with his teacher. He gets to have individualized reading training for half an hour four days a week to keep him challenged and motivated. We are very proud of him and his love of books is such a blessing - he is never bored in the car, at the doctor's office, or anywhere else. :-)
Both boys are so sweet and loving with their baby sister. Her seventh month has been quite eventful (more on that later) and she is now extremely mobile, which provides the boys with daily challenges as she eats and tears their paper airplanes and as mommy requires all tiny toys to stay downstairs at all times. Taylor loves to hold Ascha and "help" her as much as I let him (and then some :-).
Aric loves to help out with his sister, too. Both boys need a daily dose of "holding Ascha" time and have a quota of smiles from her that must be met (Aric needs "my morning smile" and "my goodnight smile" or life just isn't right).
Speaking of Aric, he's always such a character, but I'm behind on posting some of the funny things he's said, so I need to play catch-up.
~He got an "Armor of God" knight suit from my parents for his birthday, and he insists on calling it his "Nightmare Suit."
~He was talking to Jeremy on the phone one evening and telling him about the stars he'd seen. On my end of the conversation, I heard an indignant, "I am NOT a little sus-tronomer!!"
~I've put all the board books on the bottom shelf so Ascha can look at them/eat them. :-) He found one of his "special" books in the pile and complained bitterly. When I explained that I'd put it there because it's a board book, he was very offended: "But it's not bored to ME!!!" :-)
He keeps us all in stitches with his impish ways.
Ascha has been growing and changing by leaps and bounds. She learned to crawl at the end of January and is increasingly mobile every day. For the most part she is a very smiley baby and we love seeing her personality developing more every day.
In January, both Aric and Ascha were dedicated at Daybreak Community Church. Both sets of grandparents were able to come out for this special event, which was such a blessing. The visits were a last-minute whirlwind, but we all enjoyed our time together so much.
Here we are at our favorite park on the day Lyn and Janet came into town.
The boys still LOVE Grandpa's dog "Whifford."
Here we are at the dedication. It was a very special day (and it was kinda neat for Aric to be old enough to appreciate the ceremony. He was very proud of his "special day.")
Grammy and Grumpy with kiddos:
Grandma and Grandpa with Ascha
Of course, we had a lot of fun just hanging out together for the little bit of time we had together. Grumpy always has babies stand on his hands, and they usually love it. Ascha is no exception.
Aric got to show off his skills as an archer to all the family:
Once everyone left and the hubbub subsided, Jeremy decided it was time to embark on our ambitious landscaping makeover. It will probably be a few years before we get things how we want them, but we have at least seven trees to take out, so he decided he may as well get started. He did a great job felling this tree exactly where he wanted it to go. Once it was on the ground, the boys and I went out and helped haul limbs to a chipping pile. In the matter of a few hours, the tree was felled, limbed, and sawn into firewood rounds. The next day, the boys helped him transport (by the trusty old Red Flyer wagon, of course :-) the firewood to our lean-to where it can sit and season for a few years without being in the way. It's a shame we don't have a fireplace! A few days later, Jeremy had all the limbs chipped and was talking about taking out the next tree. He's an amazing guy!