Monday, August 20, 2012

Wrapping Up Summer Vacation

Let's be honest - this has been a really hard summer for me!  I was reminded of that today when I went to the bathroom and came out to find almonds thrown all over three bedrooms and I lost it.  This morning Ali also cut a little chunk out of her hair and Andy has told me "no" over and over.  I was going to take everyone to the store to get school supplies, but it seems they can't make a good choice to save themselves.  Going to the store would be a bad idea.  I would like to blame the bad behavior on the terrible cold that everyone has or the lack of sleep from the summer schedule, but it might be the lack of consistency in my parenting because I am so often stuck to the couch nursing.  It has been so hard to sit on the couch this summer and watch the kids run wild!  Granted when school starts I will still have three little ones at home, but it has to be better doesn't it?!

This summer is one for the record books for me.  With baby number five born the first week that school was out I figure I have been in the "trenches" of parenting more this summer than I may ever be again. Although we couldn't do as much as I would have liked. I have worked really hard to be consistent with Caleb practicing the piano and Cara reading this summer.  Those are two of the few battles I have chosen to fight.  I have come to the conclusion that, although I want my children to play the piano, it wouldn't be worth the fight except for the life lesson of learning to do hard things.  For Caleb piano is also a lesson in learning to work.  Teaching Cara to read has been challenging beyond my comprehension.  I read with her 30-45 minutes each day and she is still struggling with letter sounds and simple sight words.  I have tried a few different approaches and I wouldn't be at all surprise if at some point in the future she is diagnosed with a learning disability, but even if she does have one she has got to learn to read so I have tortured both of us this summer working very hard on her reading.  

Life lately has been so much of a whirlwind that I may look back and not remember anything that wasn't recorded.  In fact I can't really remember much about the last six week beyond what I have pictures of.  Even with all of the craziness of every day life we have tried to do some fun things this summer.   We did a little over night vacation on Pioneer day to SLC with Josh's sister April and her son Ethen.  We went to This is the Place Pioneer Park on the 24th which I thought was nice to give the kids some pioneer exposure.

We also went to Olympic Park in Park City.  The kids didn't even know what the Olympics where when we got there.  It was perfect timing because the summer Olympics in London opened later in the week.  We all really enjoyed them this year.  We borrowed a TV for the first week and enjoyed every minute we could watch.

The kids make a cute little four man bob sled team.  While I took them on the Olympic tour Josh got to experience the Zip Line.  It really got his heart racing, personally I was just sweating chasing five kids on a tour.

We also hit the Zoo.

And rode the tram up to the peak at Snow Bird.  The views were breathtaking!

My dad is a cowboy and was a bull rider so he has created the tradition of taking the kids to That Famous Preston Night Rodeo.  They love it!

We have a house being built next to us.  It is providing great entertainment for all of us watching out the windows, but also created a fun photo shoot of Cara eating an ice cream cone.

Johnny has proven himself to be a great sport and a fantastic baby.  He goes with the flow and doesn't cause a fuss.  I am grateful for his sweet personality (so far.)

The thing my kids have been most looking forward to this summer was their cousin's coming from Alaska.  My sister, Cathie, had her 5th baby in July and then got on an airplane to bring them all to visit.  Our kids are close to the same age and my kids couldn't wait to play.  Their time together did not disappoint.  We did pass a really bad cold around, but other than that the kids enjoyed every minute together.  This is a picture is the girls in cute dresses that Connie made for them.  Emi and Lina (Cathie's) Kate (Christie's) Cara and Ali (mine).

Johnny is growing every day.  I'm glad he is healthy and strong.  I just have to remember to enjoy each moment.  Here he is pictured with my mom.

We went swimming a couple of times with the Coombs Family.  Here are Ali and Dax and chilln' John.

We also hit the Brigham City Temple open house.  The kids wouldn't really cooperate for a picture, but at least everyone is in it.

The best part for the kids is being together at my parents house.  Caleb and Colter went on their first "long" horse ride.  Caleb was uneasy about it, but in hindsight he loved it.  They also got us to move the trampoline so they could jump off of the haystack onto it.  Cara and Emi played pretend for hours dreaming about fairy's.  The other kids laughed and played and wandered while Cathie and I sat and nursed.  Connie and mom were a great help.  The kids all prepared veggies and flowers and turned them in to the county fair to make a little money.  It was perfect!