Tag Archive | cards

Sunday Sunday…

Definitely did NOT wish it was Monday… not when the day was beautiful and the kids dressed in their Sunday best once again. No, while I had shed some tears and had some emotional moments today I had some moments of joy and contentment as well. So lets get going with the recapping… we had to get out to the van dressed, packed up and ready to go by 8am once again. There was quite a bit of reticence from the boys who were rather unimpressed by the idea of another long drive. We assured them it was for a good reason and that they WOULD have fun today at church…

Dressed to impress

We made good time even with some road repair going on and got to church in time to meet the rest of the kids and start Sunday School. I have to admit I appreciate long car rides (when the kids are in decent moods) as it gives Ken and I a chance to chat about things without the distraction of tv, computers, internet, etc. Sometimes it is the closest we get to quality one on one time. Especially if the kids are occupied or better yet, ASLEEP.

Anyway, this was a very special Sunday… first of all it is the FINAL Sunday School session of the year. Bittersweet as we have loved our year of Sunday School. The kids have made friends among their classmates, enjoyed their teachers and fellowship. We have felt totally welcomed and accepted by this church and the new minister. So they practiced their song for the OTHER big event of the day – the dedication and presentation of the nativity and “other” costumes mom made for the church. There are well over 30 done and at the church. Everyone was over the moon when they came in to them all laid out on the tables for perusal. 

Of course before the costumes could be handed out and chosen there was cookies and juice! Even Echo had a cookie. 

Cookie time

For Echo too

And then… PICKING COSTUMES! Trinity decided she didn’t want to dress up as there was no Chococat or princess but the boys were all over that as were most of the kids. Mom was there to help out with the dressing up. Proof positive that they ARE versatile for ages and sizes. 

Dressed up

With an angel

By the time everyone was dressed up Mike got there from his conference (on the bike) and church was ready to start. Hugs all round and then up to sit in the sanctuary. The group at the front were adorable. I am so glad we were able to be there for the dedication. We even made it through the whole service, communion and then…

In the front of the church singing

With a sentinel

And some more

Time to finish celebrating the end of Sunday School. I have to say I feel VERY blessed in our choice of church (it was the only ELCICin town and it has been a perfect fit for us!!). I went back after everyone had shook the hand of the minister to chat about how things are going and he took the time to sit in his office and listen to my cry a little, talk about my faith and options and say a prayer together. He has offered to connect me with the minister here in town who is actually a friend of his(!) and if we are ever in town this month and need to talk we are to let him know. 

Mommy and Echo keeping busy during service

He was more than understanding about my need to use only email right now and while he does not have answers for us he has our back in prayer. As several members of our church came up to me to tell me also. Emanuel and Trinity’s teachers (who are sisters) were very hopeful for it all working out for us and willing to ask around about some possibilities in rentals they are aware of. People also came up to inquire about Echo’s health. It makes me feel so good to know that other people are still thinking about her surgery and her recovery. I know that Ken and I are still concerned and will be until she is off the baby aspirin. 

After the Youth ran lunch the kids were outside to play games in the yard. There was everything from a beanbag toss to tug of war to a scavenger hunt. Well more of a litter pick up but they were so proud after! Even Trinity and Echo warmed up towards the end and the time in the sunshine felt so… renewing. 

Throwing sponges soaked in water at the Youth

Tug of war

We said good bye to our church friends and headed out for a run to Michaels for me (I will disclose my purchases there, as small as they are, tomorrow) and then on to Kristen and Fydo’s to grab the cards she had made for the sale (pictures tomorrow) that were hiding under their welcome mat and then… Aunty Karyn at the park! Trinity was beyond excited and as soon as we got parked and changed out of church clothes (all except for yours truly as I managed to forget mine in the hustle out the door) all the kids made a bee line for the park. 

Park time

Visiting with Aunty

Checking out the sand

We played and chatted until Echo decided she was done in the sun and wanted to sit in the van with her water cuppy. Then it was time to say a somewhat tearful good bye to Karyn and head out of town. With tired and done in kids and a baby who felt the ride home was pure torture it was quite the drive. We were all done in… and then there was the added unexpected excitement of a lost dog found on our street that mom and Mike had to take the pound so they could find the owner… and the finding of a patch of torn fur on Gypsy that we can’t figure out where she lost it… 

I am working my way through the first two manga in a new series that I plan to blog about tomorrow as well as another book I am working through during my baths! So those entries to come… We are also starting our USA unit with a focus on Minnesota so I will definitely share my links here too… I am determined to keep our educational ball rolling after all! Keep in mind that I have a few more crafts to complete for the sale… some adventures still to be had AND pet sitting, our anniversary and my birthday to look forward to. While we hustle our buns with the rental hunt I am going to grab everyone moment of joy I can find and hold on tight… and this month I am determined to be successful on ALL fronts!!! 

Grandpa time

Camping, Crafting, Company and Conversation… 4 of the Best C’s Out There

…and I drop off the face of the planet for a few days… but in a GOOD way…

Friday was a bit of a slow start as Ken had to finish something for work before we could get out the door (which inevitably took longer than expected) BUT around noon we were packed up and out the door to go CAMPING! This is the first REAL camping trip for all 5 of our kids… and a REAL adventure. Destination Tolman Bridge campgrounds… but with a stop off to pick up the map with my Aunty Lorraine in Trochu. Did  you know that Trochu has a few claims to fame? The ones I do NOT have pictures of are – they are the Pinkest Little Town in the West (2010) for breastcancer… you can still see the remnants of their pink claim to fame all over the town and the world’s largest golf tee – Veronika took me, Echo and Trinity past it and I can verify – it is a massively large golf tee! 

After sending me in to get the map and added instructions we headed back to the highway and promptly turned back so KEN could go get better instructions… I tell him EACH TIME that I am horrible with handdrawn maps and verbal directions and each time he sends me in. Thankfully Aunty Lorraine was busy so he talked to a cashier in the bank (slightly less embarrassing for yours truly) and THEN we were finally off… The camp site was another 15 min out of Trochu in some lovely country! Lots of hills and trees and interesting landscape. 

Entering the valley

We got into the camp late in the afternoon. Adam was already there with Holli and Combyne (the dogs) with two tents set up and the rv parked and ready to be used… and most importantly to the kids – a fire going!

You can see a good portion of the campsite here... apparently we got the good one! It is a nice size and down a little bit is the outhouse

Resting for a moment

We had been texting with Veronika before we got into the valley and the super spotty to NO cell phone signal area and knew she was on her way. So while we were waiting for her (she was coming from her orientation at her new job at Indigo!!) we walked kids and dogs to the river to play in the water. 

Checking out the river... the boys were excited as this river also goes through the city we live in!

It was so hot out so the water was welcoming but FREEZING cold! We played there until Veronika met up with us in her Jeep. Then we headed back to the campsite to unload what she brought. Then Veronika and I took off with Echo to the store in Trochu to “fill in the gaps” on some food items… aka = pop tarts, pork chops and some sausages. It was a nice drive and Echo got in a nap. I was reminded as to how EXPENSIVE things are in small towns… a package of pull ups in Trochu at the grocery store is 25.00… way more than in the city!!! So we decided to deal with however many we had left.

Apparently while we were gone to the store the kids found a caterpillar which was a HUGE source of excitement… many pictures were taken and I am told the critter managed to make it off intact.

Rather cute

Then it was time to pack up and head back to the lake. It had cooled off a bit so the water was VERY cold, we persevered and managed to enjoy ourselves. This time we all wore bathing suits, well except Echo but she put a toe in and very quickly voiced her opinion that the water was NOT to her liking!

Back to the lake...

The sun looks so pretty here

 Supper was cooked over the fire by our total pro Adam. It was beyond delicious and included some amazing potatoes. He really does cook EVERYTHING over the fire. And then of course there was the marshmallows… what is a camp out without them? And Veronika had the jumbo ones… they were deemed too big for the kids though… it took multiple cookings and layer after layer to get them fully eaten (you can be sure we complained loudly… well we would have except for our mouths were full and fingers too sticky!).

Showing the kids why diamond bark is called what it is (and Zander's rocks)

Snuggles in front of the fire

A marshmallow AND popcorn for Echo

The kids got to choose their tent so of course chose the big one… so after dinner it was pj’s and bed… with very few interruptions once they realized we could see their shadows from the light in the tent! That left the adults (and Echo) free to stay up late chatting, drinking, eating more marshmallows and just relaxing. How marvelous! Though I have now been reminded how out of practice I am in drinking shots… drink something all at once? Seriously? 

Ken, Echo and I slept in the rv on a VERY comfy bed… not exactly SLEPT IN but got a nice sleep… then it was up and back to camping in the morning – the rather chilly morning! So it was a very good thing I brought jeans and sweaters for all the kids. Though they were quick to lend a hand and ask poor Adam a MILLION questions about the fire – if the poor man had any intention to quit smoking they most certainly were NOT helping him with it… all 4 kids peppering you with questions CAN be quite stressful! 

Echo, Combyne and Ken hiding from the other kids

After breakfast (cooked on the fire again – YUM) it was time for some relaxing… well as relaxing as it gets with 5 active kids… but we managed… 

After relaxing and such it became clear to Veronika and I that Echo was NOT going to nap in the rv and Trinity needed a boy break. So we decided to tour Trochu and Three Hill and get some soft serve at the Trochu Dollar Store. First off to Three Hills where Adam and Veronika had rented a couple places (we drove by) and cousins from the other side of the family once lived (could not remember the way to their old place). We saw the pool with splash park, stopped in at the grocery store to NOT buy pull ups (ouch!) and generally toured. Good thing to know about Three Hills – if you need gas do NOT stop by the place on the highway but go further into the city – there was a like 9 cents difference! 

On the way back to Trochu we stopped and checked out the large windmills that are generating power out in the fields. They are intensely huge and rather awe inspiring. Trinity checked them out (with Cousin Veronika’s sunglasses on as the sun was too sunny) and was rather impressed.

I took a few pictures

So huge!

At the base of it

Of course we had to drive through Trochu also, see our grandparents’ old house (fenced and for sale), the splash park (we HAVE TO go there next year), the arboretum that we took pictures at with our grandparents ages ago… downtown… where we ended up at the Dollar Store for soft serve… Echo shared some of mine (cheesecake flavoured) and Trinity had a baby (baby??? big!) banana. 

Trinity's ice cream and the glitter paper

We picked up a treat for the boys – shaped elastics, and a sheet of purple glitter paper (only 1.50!) and headed BACK to the campsite. 

The boys' treat

The guys were all at the river so we went over there to meet up and wade in the rather chilly water. After that it was back to the campsite and more hanging out before supper… cooked over the fire of course! 

Trinity was so worn out we forced a nap on her. She woke up while everyone was eating supper and was beyond ready to go home so we figured it was time to pack up and head out. The flies and other bugs were way worse Saturday afternoon anyway and we had to be home and in bed to be awake and ready Sunday morning. So we helped pack up and said good-bye to Adam and Veronika. 

Passed out

I am happy to report that the complaining van and the cell phone on low battery BOTH saw us home safely… of course as when we came to the campsite I texted people to let them know we were on the road and went from there. I just felt safer that way, and it IS entertaining to chat while on the road. The kids were exhausted when we got home but it was definitely a BATHS FIRST sort of night, as well as the start on the mountain of laundry that had come home with us. I love campfires, do NOT love the smell of smoke on everything later. 

Sunday marked the beginning of Sunday School at our new church and the boys and Ken were the ones who went. I kept the girls home to give Echo nap time and myself the time for prep work for the afternoon crafting event. I have yet to discuss 9/11 with the kids and will probably talk to the boys about it in the future years… but what I remember the most is being in a panic with Ken as we tried to find his parents who were supposed to be flying home from vacation back to Minnesota on some unknown flight. It was a full 2 days before we were contacted and told they had been grounded in Florida and stayed with my brother in law. In the panic no one had thought to call us up here in Alberta (though keep in mind they are the same people who were in the eye of Katrina on vacation too! And drove TO work on the bridge in Mn that later collapsed that evening but not home on it!!). 

They chose matching outfits for their first day!

We had a lovely turn out for my crafting afternoon! Supplies were brought, ideas shared, glitter and more used in abundance. Crafting messes are some of the BEST messes. And boy did we make a mess! Ken had to bring up the second table and I added both spare leaves to the kitchen table. We had Karyn’s Cricut, Kristen’s texturing machine and my embossing powder and heat gun as well as tons of other bits and bobs. 

Craft supplies all over!

There was a variety of crafts going on – Victoria made stationary, most people cards and Karyn and I worked on some scrapbook pages. What we learned is that we need to pick ONE topic or theme to cut down on the large quantity of supplies we needed and that every event will most likely include at least ONE trip to Michaels with some group of people!! (we did towards the end go in with coupons and the like).

Lauralee with purple bits and bobs... I don't have a finished card picture

Karyn brought her finished cards for people to look through and there were snacks and drinks, in fact KEN made us raspberry cake and a VERY chocolaty banana bread! All were thoroughly approved. 

After some crafting was done and Echo woke up Kathy and Victoria took charge of keeping her entertained, although apparently Echo has decided she wants to learn how to knit and made it nearly impossible for Victoria to work on her blue giraffe! 

Baby time!

All in all tons of interesting things were made and much fun had! We are already discussing an October gathering with maybe a Halloween theme! YAY!!!

Two of Kristen's cards

The scrapbook page Karyn made for Emanuel with the pictures I had printed out

I did this one using Kristen's embosser... I think it is a small Sizzix

I really like this card... I need to get some of these little jewels Kristen had for myself!

I got a Currclick freebie of the week that some parents with younger children may be interested in as well! (if you have made it all the way through my weekend babble that is!)… it is called My Learning Desk Mat. I plan on making one as place mats for at least Trinity and Emanuel. 

Today’s homeschooling for the twins was mainly focused on COMPLETION. We worked hard on one of the math grade 1 workbooks they had found in their drawers and they BOTH completed it! They were so excited… it covered a variety of things but what I loved the most is that it focused on fractions in a VERY basic way so that helped them get a better idea of what they are… something I want to focus on in a big way this year. 

COMPLETION!

Emanuel worked VERY hard on his letters and numbers today. He is absolutely determined to get in as much learning as he can!

Working on 2's

We even made time for Stuart Little… we learned all about what he does first thing in the morning. Trinity had Daddy draw him brushing his teeth. 

Stuart Little pages

So with that much accomplished we let it go and the kids went down and watched the OLD My Little Pony dvds that Kathy had given them ages ago (something I can’t stand to watch so I stayed upstairs and sorted craft stuff). I feel that we ended the day work wise at a good point and they are ALL excited about tomorrow… more Stuart Little, some special pictures to draw… oh did I mention we did one last picture from each boy for their Summer Adventure File? Emanuel and Zander drew Prickie Pie who came for a visit yesterday and Gavin the tent they slept in while camping.

Meeting Prickie Pie

Prickie Pie

The tent

Now I have a corner set up even better in the basement thanks to bookcases Kathy gave us (thank you so much!) and I am hoping to have made great inroads on the rest of the mess screaming at me for cleaning. We still need to figure out curtains… and find pictures… THEN we will truly be home!

Baby Bear