Thursday, May 11, 2017

We like our music in the mornings, after school and pretty much anytime, and we play it on an old ipod touch plugged into a speaker on top of the fridge.  We mix it up with Pandora stations, our own iTunes collection, and playlists the kids have made on YouTube.

Jesse was playing a classic county station and Marty Robbins' "Big Iron" was on.  Bekah commented, “I love it when Dad plays music like this. It’s like a John Wayne movie that you just listen to!”

Wednesday, May 10, 2017

Jesse and I enjoyed observing the difference between boys and girls over the weekend.

Scott had originally covered his teepee with boughs, but a windy rain storm proved that wasn't going to work.  Jesse gave him a lumber tarp and he spent a long time making holes properly spaced to secure the base.  He cut a door from another section of tarp and fashioned a hinge by weaving smaller, flexible twigs through the edges of each piece.  He even made a latch with another small flexible twig.

And then here are the girls.  They have been wanting to create some privacy out at their fort.  The tried building a "stick-ade" out of the existing brush surrounding the fort, but gave up on that when it wasn't working for them.  So this weekend, Corinne arrives with 8 shower curtains, a hot glue gun and a bag of boughs and branches (because apparently the ones we have aren't sufficient :)
She and Bekah got right to work hot gluing the camouflaging greenery to their shower curtains, then hauled them out to the fort and strung them up.

The curtains suffered a few rips on the trip out to the woods so they were also graced with big hunks of duct tape.  Now, I'm not saying that the girls set up looks any more white-trashy than a lumber tarp, but the difference in their approaches was just too marked.  Nature over nurture.  :)

Tuesday, May 9, 2017

Bekah has been enjoying her track season so far.  The boys and I made it to a meet in Nashwauk last week and Hibbing last night.  Bekah completes in a variety of events.  She's done shot put, long jump, hurdles and sprint relays.

Track was my absolute favorite sport, hands down and I'm really enjoying seeing her get started in it this year.  I'm also enjoying her brightly-colored, non-matching sock habit as it makes her very easy to spot from across the track and pick out from among the crowd.

And you can't underestimate the social aspect of track and field!  :)  More reasons to see Corinne?  She's in!

A chance to be goofy with friends?  Yes, please!

Saturday, April 22, 2017

Bekah had a track meet last night and Jesse took Scott to a football camp in Bemidji so Alarik had some "Mommy & Me" time. 
His first wish was to ride shotgun and he was in heaven.
We drove to Marcell and had the playground all to ourselves.
 Alarik kept checking in with me asking, "Are you having a good time, Mom?"
 "Isn't this a pretty great day, Mom?"
 "How much fun are you having, Mom?"

When he tired of the playground we hit the road and headed home where we played outside some more and went for a walk down the road.

Alarik got to choose what we had for supper. It was corn dogs and mac n cheese for two.  :)

Wednesday, April 19, 2017

Bekah, Scott and I had a brainstorming session a few evenings ago.  Our topic: summer chores, screen time and behavior.  Scott decided we each needed paper to take notes and he kept us all on topic.

We've never been able to settle on one system that works well enough that we want to repeat it, so we end up trying something new each summer.  I'm glad I decided to involve Bekah and Scott in the planning process this year. They were harder on themselves than I probably would have been!

Here's what we came up with:
A weekly chart for each kid that has their "must dos" and a "chore for a dollar", plus an area to track their screen time.  Here's what Alarik's will look like:

And here is how Bekah's and Scott's will look:
I will fill in their chores based on what most needs to be done that week. 
"Must dos" and "chores for a dollar" are not new.  Neither is the tracking of screen time. We've done those things in one form or another throughout the years.  What IS new is the "behavior rating" section.  This is the first summer that the three kids will be home together without Jade as a babysitter.  I needed a way to make them accountable without automatically making Bekah fully in charge. (Scott expressly noted that the "in chargeness" should be split 40-60 between he and Bekah - hahaha!)
This is what we're trying for the summer. Each kid gets a behavior ranking from each of the other two every day. The rankings are smiley face, neutral face, frowny face. There can also be a star for even better than a smiley face day. Their goal is a total of 21 stars or smiles for the week between the three of them. Meeting that goal will earn some sort of small reward which has yet to be determined.

Tuesday, April 18, 2017

Alarik spilled approximately 20 ounces of a 28 ounce blue Gatorade on the kitchen floor last night. As I was sopping it up with gobs of paper towel, he announced, "I'm going to help you Mom." and pushed a few pieces of paper towel around.  He threw them in the garbage, then, on his way back to his play dough quipped in his most patronizing tone, "What do you say for the help?"

Here's a few more of his daycare funnies to share:

Monday, April 17, 2017

Bekah & Corinne's fort is a popular place to hang out around here.  They've made several recent purchases/improvements, the best of which is the two hammocks that they hung bunk bed style.

They have big plans to sleep out there for an entire week this summer. I shouldn't doubt them after witnessing them sleep outside in November!