Monday, August 11, 2008

Busy Summer

Finally, at age 5, Sweet Pea has conquered her fear of the vacuum cleaner. SWEET!
(The Bug, not so much - see her on the couch in fear for her life?)

Magnetism rawks.

Sweet Pea's newish obsession - photographing her food before she eats it.

Pretty sure the look says it all.

Well yes, as a matter of fact, there was a day 2 to BlogHer, and I will give you a rundown with links one of these days, but so much has been happing since then that obviously I have been rather busy. For instance, we had Sweet Pea's 5th birthday party the weekend following BlogHer, we went on a mad house hunt, put in an offer which was neither accepted nor even countered, missed out on another of my favorites, and nearly offered on a really lovely custom home in an ubelievably gorgeous neighborhood, then stopped everything due to Slipshod's research and consequent belief that the housing market is bound to drop lots more over the next year or two.

That brings us to the middle of last week.

On Thursday I took the girls to pick up my sister and then we all went to my parents' house to water their trees, etc. while they're out of town and pick whatever was ripe from the orchards and garden. We came home with a big box full of delicious fresh peaches and nectarines, and another full of zucchini, yellow crookneck squash, tomatoes, and green beans. Man oh man, fresh home grown produce is one of the best things in life, I'm sure of it.

I've managed to get the girls to two park play dates with my newish moms group over the past two weeks, but I don't think we'll make tomorrow's. Besides the fact that I'm just too tired, the park for tomorrow's play date is really dirty and skanky. But we have had a lot of fun with the group and at the parks the past two weeks, and Sweet Pea has been able to play with one of her classmates, which is something I really wanted to accomplish this summer so she'd 1) get to know him better since she didn't really play with him at school that much last year but wanted to, and 2) make contact with a returning classmate this summer and be excited about going back to school.

She is excited about going back to school, which is great. There's an open house for an hour on the 22nd and then school starts on the 25th. Lots of things will be the same for Sweet Pea at school this year. She'll be going at the same time of day as last year, five days per week like last year, in the same classroom, with one of the same teachers, and some of the same kids. Some of the other kindergarten-aged kids from last year left to begin attending public schools this year, but Sweet Pea will be one of at least four returning kindergarteners in her classroom. Her two best friends from last year will not be returning - the older one is moving up to the 6-9 year-old room and the younger one will be attending in the morning this year. However, I think this is good for Sweet Pea, especially since some of the other kids will be returning, and there were two in particular she wanted to get to know better. And honestly, while Sweet Pea's 6 1/2-year-old friend is a sweet child, I am glad they will be separated, because the older girl was very bossy and Sweet Pea was her personal little sheep as far as I could tell. I hope that this year Sweet Pea will have more confidence and be more assertive and outgoing and less whispery.
In the mean time, we have some things to accomplish: I need to have Sweet Pea try on her clothes to determine if she still wears the same size shirts, skorts, tights, jeans and shoes (I think we're okay for now but don't know for how much longer), possibly purchase a few more clothing items for the cooler seasons (thankfully Grandma S took her clothes shopping for her birthday, so we have a good start on school clothes for this year - but Gma & I were bummed to learn that our local mall no longer has a Naartjie store), we need to take a new family picture for the family tree in her classroom (it's a construction paper tree taped to the wall and they put all the children's family pictures on it), and we need to get together her ziplock bag of extra clothes and her earthquake kit (a gallon-sized ziplock with a bottle of water, some food, and a note/pictures from us to her in case she is ever stuck at school during a major emergency).

Back to the here and now... well, Saturday, anyway. Slipshod took Sweet Pea out "for an adventure," as we say, on Saturday. Their plan was to go to Costco and the hardware store. They made it to Costco and did a big shopping trip there, but Sweet Pea fell asleep on their way back toward home so Slipshod brought her home and then didn't have time to go to the hardware store by himself because he had to get ready for our visit to a co-worker and his wife at 4pm. Sweet Pea actually ended up sleeping for an hour or more on the couch after Slipshod brought her home, and I just let her sleep. It was kind of great - there was a period of time during which both girls were sleeping. Amazing.

There were two other families invited to the dinner at Slipshod's co-worker's house, but neither of them showed up, which we decided was great for us - we got our host and hostess to ourselves, got to know them a little better, and they were so great with the girls. They cooked us the most incredible Indian dinner. Sweet Pea really enjoyed her meal (the girls have had Indian food many times but sometimes they're into it and sometimes they're not so we weren't sure how they would do) but The Bug, usually the more culinarily open-minded, opted for string cheese and a banana (which we had brought along for just such an eventuality) instead. We arrived at our friends' home around 4:30pm and I think the girls ate around 8pm. The adults ate around 9:45pm and we didn't leave for home until 11pm! That was insanely late for the girls to be up, not to mention out, but we had such a good time, and since Sweet Pea had had her uncharacteristic nap earlier in the day, she did quite well. The food was fantastic, as was the company.

Sunday morning we were supposed to meet Grandma S and Boopa for breakfast but there was never a phone conversation about when or where, and we got home so late we couldn't call to talk to them about it, so we just went to bed and figured they'd call us in the morning.

In the morning, however, there was no phone call. They just showed up and since Sweet Pea had already awakened me (she has one of those bodies that wakes up between 6 & 7am no matter what time she goes to bed - it's maddening) I heard them open the sliding glass door downstairs to let our cat Clark in, who had stayed out all night. So, we got up and made breakfast and then I got to work. With entertaining grandparents here I was able to grab the vacuum and clean up the carpets. Then I took a shower and Slipshod left for his overnight business trip. After that I attacked all the yucky spots on the carpets with the shampooer. Our clothes dryer stopped making heat a few days ago so since we can no longer use it to dry (until we get it fixed, of course, but I have yet to call a repair shop) and we had been talking about using non-electric ways to dry our clothes anyway, before the grandparents left and while The Bug was napping I ran out to the hardware store and bought a wooden drying rack which shall now do its duty in the guest room bathtub except when the tub is needed for actual people washing. I also bought some clothesline and clothes pins for the back yard and tomorrow I get to figure out where I'm going to tie the line and hang the clothes. Once I get that worked out I'll need to rewash a load and a half of laundry. We did not have enough hangers or shower rails to get everything out and hung up to dry when the dryer died. Stinky!

That's it for now. But before school starts I also would like to finish writing the thank you notes for both girls' birthday presents, get us all to the eye doctor, and possibly take the girls to my parents' house (while they're home) for an overnight (or two) visit. I promised my parents I'd do that this summer and it just has not happened, so I may see if I can still pull it off before we can't go during the week! Oh, and I really need to plan our September (or October, we'll see what we come up with for hotel rooms, etc.) trip to Disneyland. Yay!

P.S. I forgot to mention that through all of this, I have continued my workout (25 minutes on the elliptical) almost every morning. A couple pounds down, but until I kick the eating-before-bed habit, I don't expect that'll change much. Still, I am definitely getting stronger and feeling more energetic. YAY! Now I need to add in some weights and target my supersoft belly. If you have advice on how to recover your abdomen after having kids, I'd really like to hear it! PLEASE SHARE!

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