Wednesday, November 24, 2010


Disco Clarks, meet Kung Fu Clarks:

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Thankful for forgetfulness

One good one for each kiddo...

Anna: Driving home from Ft. Wayne this morning, Anna noticed a flea market. Inquiring minds want to know, "Mom, do they sell midgets at the flea market?" It was nothing short of a miracle that my first response was to clarify if she meant "gadgets". She did. Max Anders would be proud of my translation skills.

McKenna: I took the kids this afternoon down to Riley for the family tours of the new Simon Family Tower. It is nothing short of amazing. It will take some getting used to, though, because it is SO different than our current set up. Anyway...we were riding down from the 9th floor to the main level and had a long walk through the corridors to get back to the coat rack (and more importantly, to the kids, the snacks). The elevator's occupants were: myself, Anna, McKenna, Samuel, and the CEO of Riley. I knew who he was and am hopeful that he does not know who I am. I am thankful that I forgot my clarian ID. McKenna pipes up (in random McKenna fashion) to Mr. CEO, "Guess what I had for lunch?" I know what she had for lunch so I know this is going nowhere good. He plays along. "What did you have for lunch?" McKenna is frank. "My mom gave me one slice of an apple." Seriously? I work on the unit with kids who have feeing issues. I am supposed to know something about nutrition and what kids ought to eat. He looked at me quizzically. All I could do was truthfully admit that she did in fact have a very large breakfast. I stopped there. I figured the more I talked the worse it would get. But it was a very long walk back to the snacks. Which Mr. CEO watched my children devour. Great.

Samuel: OK, he gets 2. He's a funny kid. First, he announced recently that he wants to move to Canada. Why, you may ask? Well, because "I like the sound of the common loon and I think they have more common loons in Canada than Indiana." Our study of birds is paying off more than I thought. Second, we've been going back and forth between underwear and pull ups at night for him. The other morning he headed to the bathroom, unzipped his jammies and exclaimed, "I forgot I was wearing underwear!" Even knowing the context it was a very funny thing to hear. Alright, he gets 3. But they're all short. Samuel has taken to calling the Simon Family Tower something different. He calls it "The Tower of Doom". Perhaps that's a name that shouldn't stick. Not so good for a children's hospital!

Monday, November 15, 2010

Getting back on the wagon

Well. I'm still here. Likely the only one, but that's OK.

How do I recap the past 9 weeks? With great gaps, I'm sure.

The highlights include...

We started in with the Iron Sharpening Iron homeschool co-op. Love. It. Sam and McKenna are doing the traditional style preschool and kindergarten classes. Anna is taking PE (she says, play and exercise) and ballet.

The girls ran in the elementary cross country race sponsored by Noblesville's cross country team. It was good fun for everyone, including McKenna. I know that actions speak louder than words and pictures are worth 1,000 words, but I promise, she did have fun. They each ran a half mile and did very well for their kindergarten and first grade divisions. McKenna came in at 4:07 and Anna ran 3:35.

We spent a rainy fall day at a local elk farm. Seeing elk. Feeding deer. Spending time.

We made a long overdue trip to Alabama. While we were there Chris and I decided it was time to celebrate our 10th wedding anniversary. We did so in some fine NCAA football style and watched Alabama roll over Florida. It was when they were still ranked first and looked every bit as good as their ranking. It was an absolutely perfect day and night. Now I can be a real fan since I've been to a home game!

On the way home we spent a day in Nashville. I always love driving through, so it was fun to stop. We continued the kids' history lessons at the replica of the Parthenon. We had been reading about ancient civilizations and our timing could not have been more perfect. Have I mentioned that I love homeschooling. We are definitely a work in progress, but I love the opportunities it has already afforded our family.

We've played in the leaves. Lots of leaves. Lots of leafy clothes through the wash... (I cannot figure out how not to have this underlined. The button is missing...)

Anna turned 7 last month. That's hard to get my mind around. She is such a sweet girl. I love that she still likes to hold my hand when we walk though the store. She's a snuggler. Loves to snuggle on the couch and doesn't leave Chris' lap when he's home. She regularly finds her mistakes in her schoolwork before being corrected. She loves to learn. Asks fabulous questions. Loves babies. And the show Animal Cops. She's turned her daddy's world upside down and declared herself an Auburn fan. She's definitely sporting the missing teeth look very well. This year she wanted a donut cake. Thanks to Dunkin Donuts, she got one. And we have listened to nothing but TobyMac since 10/22.

Another field trip was to a local farm and pumpkin patch with the co-op. The kids had a great time and after working all night before hand, I can proudly say that I stayed awake the whole time! (I guess adjusting to the whole night shift thing can be another milestone in the last couple months.)

A friend and I took our kids and a friend to the Indianapolis Symphony for the first time as well. It was pure joy for me to watch my girls as their faces lit up at the start of the first piece. They were loving it. We also took the kids to the top of the Soldiers and Sailors Monument downtown. All 8 of us squeezed into the itsy bitsy elevator for the rides up and down.

To celebrate the girls' birthdays this fall we invited a couple of their friends to go ice skating with us. They all did remarkably well. McKenna ended up with a massive bruise on her elbow and upper arm, but we avoided the ER. Success!

Samuel continues to delight me with his take on life. He tends to use the largest word in his vocabulary to describe mundane things. He came outside today to ask me to help him snap his pants after his latest trip to the bathroom. I encouraged him to do it himself. He fiddled with the snap, looked up at me and said with pure desperation, "I just don't fink I'll ever get the hang of dis..."

McKenna. So sweet. I found her sitting on the steps tonight well after her appointed bed time. She wanted me to snuggle with her a while to help her fall asleep. I climbed up onto her top bunk and asked her why she couldn't sleep. She didn't know. I asked, "Did you have your eyes closed?" "No, not exactly," she replied. "Were you trying to read in the dark again?" (prolonged pause) "Rats. You got me." It might have been the pile of a dozen books that gave it away...