Monday, September 29, 2008

The Stanley Students 2008

Here are our kid's school pictures. We are quite pleased with how they turned out!




Friday, September 26, 2008

Feeling Peachy Keen

Today I did something new and adventurous for me. I canned peaches. It came out to 7 quart size jars and 11 pint size jars. Don't ask about the uneven number...something about how many I had left from last year plus a new case.

I killed two birds with one stone today. Not only was I able to store a bunch of peaches for later use but I also cut down on the amount of peaches we will have to dispose of in our backyard. Maybe that will cut down on the fruit flies too. Last year we had just moved in and there were conflicting reports on whether our fruit was safe to eat due to spraying for the Japanese beetle. This year we know it is safe and it has been like the garden of Eden going into our back yard and plucking a perfect peach right off of our tree.

I want to thank my wonderful mother-in-law BK who taught me last year how to can with the apricots in the back yard of our old house. Even better, she wrote down the instructions so I followed them and as far as I can tell it all turned out good. I guess it is just up to the taste test to give me the final verdict.

Now that the peaches are done I need to figure out what to do with my apples and how to juice grapes. I have never done either of those so that will be an even bigger adventure.

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Toilet Training here we come!

This morning I made a decision. I don't know if it is because Sam seems ready or I am finally ready but I have decided it is time to potty train Sam. I will at least give it a good try. If it is easy I would be a fool not to just get it done with. Sam has the kind of personality that I could see this going quickly. He seems eager to please. We also seem to be able to have decent conversations. I think potty training requires in a big part, the ability to communicate. We went to Wal-mart today and bought the little boy underwear. Now I am entering a higher level of commitment.
In the midst of the busy day I kind of decided to wait 'til tomorrow to start. As I was changing his diaper though he said
"No, I want underwear!" so that is how he went to Pack Meeting. No accidents yet! As he was getting out of the car he said
"I show my underwear to my friends"
I said "No, you don't show your underwear to people. That isn't nice." Then he clairified.
"No, I show it to my little friends!" At least he is proud. Hopefully that motivates him.
This should be quite the adventure. It always is.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

The End of an Age

Yes, turning 8 is an exciting age. You, get baptized, you start going to scouts or achievement days and last but not least, you give up the booster seat. For me this is a big one. We had 3 booster seats in our van up until yesterday. Two of them are the backless, light booster seats. The third was a convertible car seat.

It was heavy, (it is the blue one Sam is sitting in) had a big back, arm rests, and an annoying base that makes it hard to buckle . When it was a car seat, with the harness in it, it took an hour to put the harnesses back in after it was washed. Believe me, with Sam, it was washed more than it's fair share. I have been counting the days until I could rid of that annoying, yet life saving contraption. Now that Elisabeth is out of the booster seat I take a deep sigh of relief. The first thing I did the morning of her birthday is take that thing out.

When I look back and see the inside of the van, it obviously no longer caters to the needs of toddlers or infants. I feel a little veklempt. I am saying goodbye to something. It is the end of a stage in our lives. Even if it was not an easy one and I am glad it is over, it is over. The age of infants and toddlers is now over (assuming God doesn't have any surprises up his sleeve.) Now it is the time of pre-schoolers, school agers, pre-teens, teenagers and beyond. And I thought toddlers were hard. HA! !

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Happy Birthday Elisabeth!

Today is my daughter's birthday! It is #8 so it is an important one. Elisabeth is like one of those companions who is never green and even though you might be "senior companion" you know who really seems more apt for the position. Elisabeth is the definition of matronly to me. She is so nurturing to those around to her.

Elisabeth is everything I could ever have asked for in a daughter. She likes girly things but at the same time she is tough enough not to be prissy. She is very loving toward her little brothers and other little kids and is a great friend for her big brother. Even when she was little, I remember I had the choice to leave her with the babysitter or take her to my prenatal appointments. I chose to take her with because she has always been such good company.

Even though she may complain hence her new title "Princess of Wails" she is quite obedient and can (almost) always be counted on to do as asked. Elisabeth is a princess in every way. We love you Wiz! Happy Birthday!

Friday, September 19, 2008

Mystery foods

Two nights ago I heard the following conversation
Tim: Sam, what do you have in your mouth?
Sam: I don't know.

What more need I say?

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Don't Kiss and Tell

Last week, as I was walking Lincoln home from Kindergarten, a girl walks by with her dad and calls
"Hi Lincoln!"
He responded and then I asked him what her name was. He then yells
"What's your name?"

(This is the same girl who on the first day of School Lincoln tells me just as he comes out of class
"There is only one cute girl in my class, and that's her". )

She answers (I will keep her anonymous for her sake and Lincoln's)
Then Lincoln goes on to say. . .loud enough for the girl and her father to hear
"I like her! I love her! When I grow up I want to marry her!"
After a pause he whispers,
"I kissed her in school"
He later told me
"I was just kidding."

Yesterday at the School carnival the same girl was in line behind us. Thankfully with her friend's family and not her parents. I overheard her tell her friend
"Lincoln kissed me, right on the lips!" She seemed pretty darn proud.
Her friend responded to her
"You shouldn't say that so loud!"
WOW! Are we in such trouble!!!! I can't say I didn't see that one coming though. When Lincoln wants something he gets it. I imagine the same thing goes with the girls.

Tuesday, September 09, 2008

Tigh and Rosalyn for President

Granted they are not identical but there is just too much similarity not to have to laugh. Think about how you would describe them to someone:
Tigh/McCain-tortured, imprisoned war hero, married to a hot blond, looks a little like a bull dog, white hair and balding, grew up in military family, favor extreme military measures.
Rosalyn/Palin- religious zealot, political career. Attractive, longer dark brown hair, glasses, The other day I heard a news caster refer to Obama as Apollo.

Sense and Sensibility- I can think of two things wrong with the name of this film

. . . at least when it comes to the casting.
I just watched "Sense and Sensibility" I remember when I saw it in the theater and I cried for like 1/2 an hour afterwords. Poor Tim. . .Poor Trooly. They were there too. Although I definitely shed tears this time as well it was definitely not the sob session it was for me last time. I had some serious issues last time and the movie seemed to have brought them out.
I like that the movie made me cry. That is a plus for me, really.

What I did not like is that the end made me grimace a bit. I saw nothing romantic about the marriage of Alan Rickman and Kate Winslet. I think they are both great actors...well Alan Rickman at least. . . I have no real opinion of Kate Winslet but I couldn't help but feel sorry for Kate's character none the less. Snape (Harry Potter) and Rose (Titanic) ???? Come on!!!

I also found the uniting of Emma Thompson and Hugh Grant a similar match. I didn't feel sorry for either of them but. . . they just don't make the perfect couple some how. I usually enjoy Hugh Grant's performances but this one kind of bugged me. He was almost painful to watch.

Sunday, September 07, 2008

Sympathy from surprising places.

I am reading a book I read when I was 16. I loved it then and I am loving it even more 20 years later. This author has an amazing ability to capture every day life. In the book there is a family they have a 5 year old and a 2 year old. The characters experience so many things I can identify with at my older age. Kids starting school, moving to a new house, funerals, pets, etc. etc. I wanted to share two of my favorites. See if you can can guess who this author is. You might be surprised.

About waiting at home on your kid's first day of kindergarten:

"When the phone rang at a quarter past ten, Rachel raced for it and answered with a breathless "Hello?" before it could ring a second time. Louis stood in the doorway between his office and the kitchen, sure it would be Ellie's teacher telling them that she had decided Ellie couldn't hack it; the stomach of public education had found her indigestible and was spitting her back."

I think we all hold our breaths on our kids first day of school wondering if our kids are cut out for school, or if our kids school is cut out for them. We know they are smart, we know they are special, but will the school see our kids for what they are worth? Will the teacher understand our kid with all their little quirks? After all it took us 5 years to figure them out only to send them off to some stranger to take over and pick up where we left off.

The other scene that captured my reality at least was the following. The father was trying to go out to fly a kite with his 2 year old. With young children this is much easier said than done.

"Gage's neeks [Sneakers] were finally found. . .they were also under the couch. One of Louis's other beliefs was that in families with small children, the area under living room couches begins after a while to develop a strong and mysterious electromagnetic force that eventually sucks in all sorts of litter-everything from bottles and diaper pins to green Crayolas and old issues of Sesame Street magazine with food mouldering between the pages.

Gage's jacket however, wasn't under the couch-it was halfway down the stairs. His red sox cap, without which Gage refused to leave the house, was the most difficult of all to find because it was where it belonged -in the closet. That was naturally, the last place they looked."

It is this realistic deptiction of normal every day life and my ability to identify with it so well that makes it that much scarier when freaky things start happening in their lives. This writer is a genius. I don't like all his books. Many of them however are masterpieces.

What am I reading? Pet Semetary by Stephen King. And just as a warning. . .He is a horror writer and can be disturbing. . .so don't read his book for these scenes. I was just surprised to find them.

Friday, September 05, 2008

How did I miss this?

I hope this is as good as it looks! It comes out in December.