Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Crazy Kids

Tonight at Awana was Crazy Christian Night. The kids dressed up crazy. Evan had his shirt inside out, was wearing pajama pants, and put his hair up in a mohawk. We didn't have any gel so he tried it with water, but it wouldn't last. Lauren has several pigtails in her hair and one short and one long sock. So fun!

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Free Museum Day

Saturday was free museum day and did we take advantage of it! Went to Exploration Place, Botanica Gardens, and Cowtown. But before all of that Roger took the kids to Lowe's for a build it workshop where they made toy firetrucks and the fire department was there with a real truck. After all of our outings we went way to the east side of town and ate at Cheddars. I had heard many people mention this restaurant before so we decided to try it. Yummy and very reasonable price wise. This was a busy, but unstressful and fun day.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Small Blessings Can Make a Big Impact

You know, sometimes I think that nothing counts unless it's done in a big and loud way. Before everyone starts emailing me telling me that's not necessarily true--I already know it doesn't have to be that way. But, with my temperament, that's just the way I tend to think. Thank goodness I have people around me that I can observe and be reminded that sometimes the little, quiet things can make big impacts.

When WWHM (co-op)started up last month we were given a flyer from a local bowling alley that wanted to offer homeschool bowling lessons and/or leagues. I discussed things with Evan and he was interested in the lessons, but not the league because it would last several months and he thought that was too long. I thought he made a wise decision and agreed with him. The first week of lessons we were on vacation, but we've made it the past two weeks. Laura is the name of the person at the bowling alley who has helped out Evan. She said that the first week there was a mom with 3 kids, but they would be coming hit and miss which was fine. So, the past 2 weeks, it has just been Evan practicing.

Last week, Laura worked with Evan on his swing and when the lesson was over she did not charge me. She was even going to let Lauren bowl, but she didn't have any socks with her, so wasn't able to. This week we went back and again Evan was the only one there. Laura told me up front she was not going to charge me since Evan was it again and she even let Lauren bowl for free with bumpers. I told her that's exactly why I wanted to pay her because business was down at that time, but she insisted, so I accepted. She had even remembered Evan's name from the previous week which I thought was pretty impressive.

The lessons are only for an hour and are only $3 which includes shoes, bowling, and a little bit of instruction. For Laura to wave the fee for both weeks and both kids has really touched me. I know that at some point I will have to pay and I will be happy to do it. I don't know if Laura is a Christian, but I told her I would pray that more people will start coming because that is what she wants.

I've been talking to the kids about how nice Laura is being to us and I think I'm going to have them make a thank you card for her. If she is a Christian, then she surely knows that God will reward her for her blessing us. If she isn't a Christian then maybe a simple little thank you card will be an opportunity to witness to her.

In my mind, this is a small, quiet gesture, but it can make a big, loud impact.

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Vero Beach Vacation Part 6--Saying Bye

I have to thank God for a blessed vacation. We expected rain every afternoon, but that only happened the night we arrived, Thursday afternoon, and the day we left. Everything was so relaxing, calm, and fun. One of my other favorite experiences of the trip was our last night when we walked the beach at sunset. The ocean was warm and foamy, the breeze was blowing through our hair, and the temperature was cool. A perfect ending to our vacation!

Vero Beach Vacation Part 5--Fun Activities

The resort offered many activities--most of them free. The kids did a 1 hour Un-birthday Party, miniature golf, learned bocci ball(Evan), traded Disney pins, made paper airplanes (Evan), attended a tea party (Lauren), went on a treasure hunt (Lauren), and we paid to put them in a 3 hour Kids Discovery Club. I am proud to say that the employees of the Un-birthday Party and Discovery Club made a point to tell us that our kids are very well-behaved. Roger and I are always glad to hear that, but as most parents just wish they were that well behaved all the time at home! We attended a hilarious campfire--one of my favorite parts of the trip. I don't have any pictures of this, but on Thursday we drove 1 hour and 10 minutes up to Cape Canaveral to see the space shuttle land, but because of off and on rain showers, it didn't end of landing that night. Bummer. We have promised Evan that next time we are in Florida we will go to the Kennedy Space Center.

Vero Beach Vacation Part 4--Dining Out

For most meals we bought groceries and ate in the room, but there were a few times we ate out. When the kids were in the 3 hour Kids Discovery Club having their dinner, Roger and I got to go into town and eat at Squid Lips. It is a seafood restaurant on a harbor with huge open window to feel the breeze. Yummy. When we went to Cape Canaveral we ate at another seafood restaurant called Dixie Crossings. Yummy. Roger can never get enough seafood--I can though. We also had a special dinner with Donald Duck and Goofy at the resort. The kids were so excited and our waitress even commented on how she enjoyed Lauren's eyes lighting up every time she saw Goofy. However, it was a huge chunk out of our pocket book. Yikes!

Vero Beach Vacation Part 3--The Pool

Even though I love the beach and could sit and relax for hours, the kids loved the pool the most. It was a Mickey Mouse head shaped pool, had a tall tower water slide, and there was a little pirate ship for little kids to slide and play on. We all had our turns on the water slide, especially Evan. He even participated in a water slide competition where an employee would time people as they went down. There were free pool noodles and balls to use, and the kids met some friends who they played with every day.

Vero Beach Vacation Part 2--The Beach

Whenever I told someone where we were going on vacation, they all would say "It's going to be hot!" My response: "We're going to be swimming in the ocean so we won't feel hot!" Anyone who knows me can tell you that my favorite vacation spot is a beach. I just love it. Whenever heaven comes down to earth and you want to find me, look on the beaches.

God blessed us with gorgeous weather. It only rained the night we arrived, Thursday afternoon, and the day we left. The temps never got above 90 degrees. Lovely, lovely weather to play in the warm ocean.

The first thing we did when we woke up the first two days was head to the beach. We walked it and looked for seashells, Roger took the kids out into the ocean and they bobbed on the waves, and on the second day the kids built a sandcastle.

Here are some tips when building a sandcastle: Smooth out an area flat. When collecting sand, scoop it up right where a wave stops on the beach--the perfect consistency. If you want to make a moat, make sure it's far enough away from the castle so the water doesn't seep under the castle and collapse it. Shells and seaweed make nice decorations.

There were parts of the beach that were completely covered in shells. Evan was sitting in an area and got swept up the beach by a wave and his back got scraped up by all of the shells. It hurt, but he didn't cry and went right back to playing. We all found some nice shells to bring home.

Vero Beach Vacation Part 1--Getting There

What a great vacation! We wanted to just relax and not be running around and that's exactly what we did. As a result though, there aren't too many pictures because when you're doing mostly nothing but swimming, there aren't a variety of pictures to take.

The first Saturday we left we didn't have to get to the airport until 10:00--so nice considering most other times we usually have 6-something am flights, so don't get much sleep the night before. We had a short layover in Dallas and then got to Orlando about 6:30 pm (5:30 KS time). All times the flights were on planes where on one side of the aisle were rows of 3 seats and the other side rows of two seats. We were lucky enough to be able to sit in the rows of two seats. The clouds we had to fly above and around were huge because of rain. Some seemed like fluffy cotton, and some seemed like tall towers that looked like thick packed snow. The kids thought it was pretty cool.

We had 3 small suitcases to check in and they were $15 a piece--what?! I didn't know we had to do that now, but Roger did. We had to pay this price both ways, not round trip. Boooooo! Also, another surprise for me--you no longer get little bags of snacks anymore; only drinks. But, you can spend $3 on a cookie, or nut mix, or potato chips if you want a snack, but they do not accept cash; only debit or credit. Booooooo! This was on American Airlines, but I suppose they all do this now?

The Hertz rental car was off the airport so a shuttle bus took us there and the car was ready for us--no checking in, just straight to the car where a sign had our name on it.

It was a Mitsubishi Galant and the kids liked it because it had a lot of zip and was red. The back seat wasn't bad, but Roger and I weren't very comfy in the front. A 1 1/2 hour rainy drive to the resort in Vero Beach. Went to the grocery to buy food and then went to the room to sleep--it was too dark to look around the resort and get familiarized.

Friday, September 4, 2009

Making Smores

Last Sunday was National Toasted Marshmallow Day (August 30) so we decided to celebrate by making smores on the cool fall-like August night. YUM!

Camping In

Last Saturday Lauren and I decided to camp out in the sunroom and take advantage of the fall like August temps. We slept so good!

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Bowling Fun

We got to go bowling a couple of times this summer with friends through the Kids Bowl Free program. This outing was in August. Lauren didn't bowl so much, but Evan loved it. He kept getting better all the time and has figured out how to put a spin on his ball.

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

The Difference Between Boys and Girls

I was gathering laundry from everyone's hampers and as I entered Lauren's room she was singing some sweet songs and when I got to Evan's room he was shouting "boom-boom" and shooting at whatever. I just chuckled inside thinking how thankful I was for the differences between girls and boys.

Baseball Fun

We were fortunate enough to attend two Wichita Wingnuts baseball games this summer. The July one was for boy scouts and the August one the kids got free tickets for finishing their library reading program goals. Believe it or not, for both games we ended up sitting in the same exact seats--unplanned. So much fun!