Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Hornet Hustle Results

I can't wait to make this announcement.  It's something that's so near and dear to my heart that I am just completely filled with joy when I think of it. 

Back in March, I started working on the 2nd Annual Abilene Elementary School Hornet Hustle (mouthful, I know)!  Two years ago in a PTO meeting one of the parents had an idea.  What if instead of selling cookie dough, coupon books, and wrapping paper, we host a race to raise money for the school.  As we talked, we added on the component of students raising pledge money and the Hornet Hustle was born!  In 2010, we raised $12,008 for our school.  We knew we wanted to grow the race, but we also faced a big obstacle.  Our school district added a third elementary school and when the students were reassigned to three school instead of two our attendance dropped 34% (from 350 students to 230).  How would we raise as much as last year with 34% less students raising pledge money and attending the race?  Numerically, it didn't seem possible.  We resigned ourselves to raising less money and forced ourselves to try to not compare this year's results to last year's.  We just weren't the same school anymore.

Well....the results are in for 2011 and it's nothing short of a miracle!  Seriously, any way you shape it we should have raised significantly less money this year.  But, we didn't!  Thanks to incredible corporate sponsors, a crew of dedicated volunteers, and some AMAZING students, we raised $14,150.00 this year for our elementary school!  That's a 18% increase if I'm doing my math right!  That sure beats selling junk to our family and friends.  I'm sure you all appreciate that too!

A GIANT thank you to everyone who helped us pull this off.  It took a village to do it....but we did it! 

Monday, August 29, 2011

Confession # 6: Sometimes we fail as parents.

This weekend has been crazy. Ridiculously busy and exhausting at the same time.  A few things around the house got put on the back burner.  Apparently properly parenting my children was one of those things. 

Anna lost her 2nd tooth on Saturday.  She was thrilled.  I had her put the tooth on the counter so we could get it ready for the tooth fairy.  Except, someone threw it away before we could do that.  Nice.  I wasn't going to tell her, so I found a crumb on the counter.  Classy, right?  I took the crumb, put it in an envelope and she put it under her pillow.  Except, the funny thing is, the tooth fairy totally forgot to come.  Ugghh.  She woke up this morning and ran up to show me that the envelope was still there and the tooth fairy never came.  Lovely.  I looked at her and said, "Well, you know what, I don't think the tooth fairy works on Sundays.  Most people have the day off.  We better try again tonight!"  Seriously.  Complete failure as a parent.  Poor kid!

Saturday, August 13, 2011

1st Day of School

Friday was Sophia and Anna's first day of school.  It went pretty much as I had anticipated.  They got up and were dressed and fed in record time.  We took the traditional pictures out front and then hopped in the car to head to school.  While they are bus riders, I still think it's fun to drive them to school on the first day.

We took the annual picture outside the school in front of the sign (thanks Principal Hoy). 

By this time Sophia was getting tired of the pictures and was less than thrilled.  As we were walking down the hall Anna was getting more nervous.   She looked like she could cry at any minute.  That would be her first day eating lunch at school and she didn't know how to do it.  I promised her that none of the first graders knew about the lunch routine and the staff were going to spend time showing them what to do.  She did not feel better.  So we stopped at the end of the hall to say a little prayer for their day and their year.  Sophia said, "not another picture!"  Then we headed to the gym to drop the girls off in their classroom lines.  Sophia quickly said good bye and didn't want us to walk with her to her class.  Anna begged me not to leave her in the line alone.  So, we walked Anna off to her class at the appropriate time, hugged, kissed and watched another student tearfully hug the teacher.  It was going to be a long day in first grade! 

Then it hit me.  Freedom!  Running errands with 2 kids is dramatically easier than with 4.  I thought I'd celebrate that fact by going shopping with Sam and Isabella.  Some of the kids needed some new shoes so I was going to run over there and then go into any store I wanted.  Right.  By the 2nd store Sam had a meltdown.  He began crying "Anna, Anna, I need my Anna, where's Anna?"  Well buddy, you just dropped her off at the school.  I gave up.  Instead of doing some fun shopping, we went home.  Very sad. 

The kids played, ate, and napped. 

The girls came home from school and told me detail-by-detail all about their day.  Anna survived lunchtime.  They both liked their teachers and had some friends in their classes.  Good start to another school year! 

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

This is for you, honey.

Lots of things happen that make me think, I should blog about that.  Kids say crazy things.  We end up in ridiculous situations.  You know, life with 4 kids happens.  Chris rarely says anything about the blog.  But the other day he came in so excited announcing that I had to see something and then blog about it.  He was insistent. 

I came into the kitchen to see what was so exciting.  This is what I saw.

Yep, melted crayons.  You see, sometimes I get so involved in a project that by the time I'm done I don't want to think about it again for a very long time.  That's what happened with VBS this summer.  When it was over, I hauled a bunch of stuff into my garage to sort through, and it just sat there.  For a month.  Did I mention we've had 40 days of 100+ temperatures?  Not the best place for crayons. 

But while I was just a little annoyed at myself, Chris was fascinated.  He couldn't stop talking about the crayons.  "Look how the top crayons just melted down over the bottom ones."  "Look, you can see straight through the paper wrapper." "Can you believe the whole thing just slid out of the box?"  It went on and on. I had to promise him I'd blog about it.  So, here it is.  Pretty cool huh? 

Thursday, August 4, 2011

The Pediatrician vs. the Un-Supermom

Am I the only one who doesn't like going to well-child appointments?  No shots were needed today, so for our $20 co-pay (x 2) we just got a couple of the kids weighed and measured and quizzed.  Then I was judged.  I am, of course, not supermom.  Never claimed to be.
The appointment went a little like this...  Yes, I do have the "whole gang" here.  Why does that surprise you every time.  We've been coming for 4 1/2 years now.  What would I do with them, leave them at home?  Yes, we do all have to squeeze in.  I've been doing this a while now, I'm used to it.  (Why don't pediatricians at least have one family-size office.  We don't all have 2.1 kids). No, I don't really care that a limb blew down from your tree last night and that you saw some movie last week that I haven't heard of. Why are you talking to me? You are a pediatrician, you should be talking to the kids!

Yes, my 8 year-old is a picky eater.  No, she doesn't really eat meat (and yes, I know chicken mcnuggets probably don't count as meat).  Nope, she doesn't eat beans either. Yes, I realize you can't be a vegetarian unless you eat a lot of vegetables.  Is there a catchy title for kids who eat a lot of pb&j, pasta, fruit and salad?   Yes, I know, it's not perfect or ideal, but the kid is healthy so at this point it's not going to be a battle for me.  I've tried battling.  The kid won't eat the stuff. 

Yes, my 3 year-old is not potty trained.  Yes, I know you wanted me to do that at 18 months.  Get real.  He is indeed old enough, and I will do it.  Soon, just not today.  Yes, he does still sleep 3-4 hours every day, and a good 11 hours at night. Some kids like sleep.  I know I do!  I don't think it's that crazy. 

Fun times!  Maybe it's just me...or maybe it's just my doctor who I have not particularly liked for the last 4 1/2 years.  But, it's not easy to change doctors.  The paperwork involved with insurance is a nightmare.  So, for now, I just keep with the status quo.   I dread the appointments because I know she's going to tell me exactly how I'm not a supermom.  But seriously, who is?  Having four healthy kids is nothing short of some type of super-status don't you think?

Monday, August 1, 2011

Watch out world...he's got his own set of wheels!

We bought Sam a bike several months ago.  Probably in March or April.  Shortly after we took him out to give it a try and he really seemed to enjoy it, but never took off on his own.  Daddy had a sore back!  He did, at one point, look at me and say, "I. Am. Speed!"  Of course, it's a Lightening McQueen bike with matching helmet and knee pads. 

After that when we'd go on our regular family walks, I'd ask him if he wanted to ride it and he always said no so I'd just put him in the stroller and off we'd go.  It's been too stinkin' hot to go outside in the evenings for the last month so we haven't been doing many family walks lately.  Friday night it was much cooler -- in the mid 90's (and isn't that sad that the mid 90's felt great!)   I asked Sam if we wanted to try his bike and he was ready.  He's 3 now - such a big boy! 

So we got him ready to go and Chris helped him get started.  There was a lot of coaching involved, "peddle, peddle, peddle."  A lot of getting his feet to stay on the peddles and then working on continually moving his little legs.  But off we went.  By the time we were down the street a ways he took off.  He no longer needed Chris' help and he could even turn in the direction we told him to -- as long as we called it his steering wheel!  Of course, he added his own "race car" engine sound effects to help his motor get going!  His sisters were incredibly proud and the pack even went together for a ride for a little bit.  But it was getting dark and we needed to head in. Every time the girls told him he did great he would just say "thank you" in such a sweet and proud little voice. 

I LOVE this picture!  My little rat pack!  This fall is going to be a lot of fun with all of them moving....I may actually get to get back on my own bike! 

When a 3 year-old reads the Bible...

We were all in "prayer position" around our coffee table tonight getting ready to say our nightly prayers.  Sam had a little New Testament Bible and he began to read to us.  "Then Jesus put his body on the cross so he could die on the cross so a car wouldn't run over him."  Priceless.