Thursday, July 17, 2014

Run, Run, pant, pant, Run Some More

We are now home "for good." Whatever that means. The bulk of out traveling has been completed (excluding Jason) and now we will be trying to establish a summer routine. Kind of late, I know, but you just work with what the situation is, you know? Let me catch you up a little bit since my last post.  
We were home for a day and a half before we got the call that Jason's grandfather had passed away. We waited until the next morning before leaving to go back to Tennessee and made the trip in a quick 10 hours or so. We got there late Sunday night and spent the next few days visiting with the family and attending the visitation and the funeral. 
We returned home (extremely spent and exhausted) on Thursday afternoon. Jason dropped us off at the house and I quickly unpacked and then repacked the girls. I ran Elaina and Eily to the doctor; Eily for an infected toe that was causing red streaks up her foot and Elaina for swimmer's ear. (Or in her case, bathtub ear.) Then I dropped the girls off at Mom's house and Jason and I headed for Farmington. We stayed that night with my sister and then woke up bright and early and went to the hospital in Bentonville so that Jason could get permanent tubes put in his ears. 
Then we skedaddled home so that Jason could get some rest and I could get busy cleaning the house because we had company coming in late that night and I hadn't really been home to clean in over a month. I was very doubtful that I could pull off a hefty grocery trip, deep house cleaning, and catching up the laundry- but I did it before any of the company showed up at the house. It helped that it was pretty late by the time anyone arrived.  

The next morning, friends and relatives from my dad's side of the family came together and celebrated my grandfather's 90th birthday. I didn't think to take many photos but I did catch this sweet moment between Elaina and Grandpa. She had just come over to give him a hug and a kiss and wish him a happy birthday. 

Sunday was very low-key, in such a wonderful way, and we rested up and recuperated from all the business. 

This week has been mainly spent at the city pool and the Geek Squad desk at Best Buy. The girls have started swimming lessons and Nora comes home every day a little upset that they won't just let her swim alone because, "Look how big I am now! I'm grown all up!" I keep assuring her that when the time comes, the teacher will let her know and until then she needs to just keep practicing her arm movements and kicks. 

If you have noticed that Claire hasn't been in any of the photos so far, that's because she stayed in Tennessee and then went home to Mississippi with her cousin, Lily. Aunt Abby has been texting me photos all week of all the fun things they have been doing. Lily has a cousin, Charlie, on her mama's side of the family that is Claire's good friend and I know they've been able to play together quite a bit, too.

Claire and Lily making a craft at the Farmer's Market

Claire- sporting her new haircut and enjoying a smore's at Uncle Tommy and Aunt Kara's house

Lily, Claire, Nora Strevel, Charlie Strevel
I love this photo so much

More splash pad fun in Mississippi

This last photo was taken in Tennessee. Abby, Kara, and I brought the kids home early from the visitation. We were going to take them to the backyard and let them burn off some energy but it was raining, so...
Nadia, Elaina, Nora, David, Claire, Eily, Lily

Wednesday, July 02, 2014


We've been doing a lot of traveling this month. We spent the last few days with Jason's family in Tennessee. 

The girls and I went to the Discovery Center in Murfreesboro one afternoon. It's always a big hit.  

We are a little road weary but happy to be home. 
(Nora has gum in her mouth, not black teeth.)

We have a very full week ahead of us so I'm trying to get all my ducks in a row as soon as possible. Jason is doing the same at his studio. I'll try to keep you all updated as we zoom along. :)

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Harmony Hill 2014 and other Things

We have been home from camp for a few days now.
I"m not sure why, but I have had a really hard time bouncing back this year. I have been sleepy. Super, duper sleepy. There have been years where I have had much less sleep, and years where the temperatures were so hot that it took all my energy just to walk, but never have I come back feeling so exhausted. I'm just going to chalk it up to getting older because I don't know what else it could be.

If I stay on schedule with my chore list for today, I should have all the Harmony Hill equipment put away and all the laundry washed and folded. I will count this as a major accomplishment. Because it is.

I'm attending my first Classical Conversations Practicum this weekend. I'm very excited about it because I feel like I signed up to be the director but haven't really done anything to learn how to be the director.

Since we've been home, I've been trying to go as long as possible without buying groceries. At first, it seemed as if we had nothing to eat, but I'm figuring out how to be creative and we have had some really yummy, filling meals.
Claire, Elaina, and Lillie
 These pictures were taken on our "nice" camera and obviously, I only thought to bring it with me on one day. But that's ok. Maybe next year I'll do better. Enjoy what few photos I did take.
A wind-blown Nora


Nora and Elaina

Eily and Catherine Palmer


Claire and Eily


Weird shadow photo of Ryan and Nora

Josie Claire

Aunt Pretty and Eily

Thursday, June 12, 2014

Wednesday, June 11, 2014

Harmony Hill Day 3- part B

Kids did some crafts

I took a marvelous nap

Bernardo told one of his famous 99 Chicks stories

Stayed up way too late learning new music and laughing with friends 

Nora actually went to sleep at her normal bedtime

Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Harmony Hill- day 3 part A

Beautiful weather today with NO RAIN

This morning it was actually pretty cold

Nora made her first solo run from the class area to the tent

Eily made a friend

The preschool class sang Happy Birthday to Rachel

Nora and Imani held hands as they walked to Imani's camper and the cuteness just about did me in

Drew a super fancy Miss Look at Mi