My Little Sweeties

My Little Sweeties
Chauntel with Camille, Alexa holding Jared, Blayne with Garret, Zac

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Ephrata Weekend

A few weekends ago we took a little trip to Mom and Dad's and to Ephrata to see Joel and Denise's family. Beautiful day for the drive! This is close to Dad and Mom's house. We had asked them if we could stop there and bring breakfast to eat with them. They wanted us to come but insisted on making the breakfast. We enjoyed the delicious breakfast and short visit!

Turned around at one point to see this sweetness:)

Lots of girls having fun on the tramp!

The boys having their own kind of fun...

After supper Joel or Denise told the boys they could go start a bonfire for roasting. Awhile later we looked out to see this......quite a bonfire! I guess it was Ketola-style:) Someone had to go out and tame it down!!! They just might have to notify the fire department when they decide to have a bonfire:)

Joel and Denise prepared their usual 5 star supper for us! It was sooo good! Grilled hamburgers, home-made french fries, and yummy onion rings!

Uncle Joel entertaining the kids with candy and making funny faces specially for the camera:)

Zac and one of his favorite cousins, Barbara!

Relaxing after church on Sunday morning. Julia, Jolena, Benita, and Alexa

This is my favorite photo of all:) We took awhile getting everyone loaded and situated. Finally we backed up and were just going to start honking good-bye when we looked at the house and saw all these guys on the deck with napkins; pretend crying. (although they look pretty happy actually!)

Really enjoyed our mini vacation! Love ya, Mona

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Capitol Visit....

We went to the capitol for a field trip. It was also the Annual Home Educators' Day at the Capitol. So there were lots of other homeschoolers there also.

This is before we went into the Capitol!!!!

Everyone brought pies for the legislators. My mom wanted me to take a pic of them. I took lots but all of them turned out blurry! Sorry!!!!

Uncle Paul asked Mom and Aunty Charity if they wanted a picture and they wanted one. Here it is. We were in the Rotunda waiting for some legislators to talk to us.

Different people did different things. This is one of the guys that spoke.

After the guy was done speaking, they said a little prayer for him. We were surprised that many of the legislators that spoke to us really believed in God.

This lady sang "America the beautiful".

Some other homeschooler lady asked us if we wanted a pic. We didn't say yes but the moms did.

Some of us girls.

These are the fancy fancy fancy doors.

Mom got this some time. She got it out the back doors of the capitol.

This is the really big light. It holds 200 light bulbs. They change the light bulbs every 10 years. A full size VW bug can fit inside this chandelier.

I think this is inside the Senate.

This one is too.

This was in Rep Ed Orcut's room after we were done meeting with him.

It was a very fun day! And we were all glad to go! ~Alexa

Omsi Field Trip

Here are some photos from our OMSI field trip back in January. We went with several other homeschooling friends. The kids and I really enjoyed it!

I think Zac would've stayed at this particular exhibit for hours if I would've let him! You pressed these two buttons to fill these 2 liter bottles with water and air. Then you pushed another to launch the bottle. Depending on the combo of air and water you chose, depended on how far the bottles shot into the air.

Blayne and Telie really liked this one too:)

Zac was having a good time building from these different model instructions.

Here they are in a glass elevator going from one level to the next, with Portland showing through the windows.

Blayne the astronaut....

One of the girls in our group went on the table and took some pictures of part of the group eating lunch.

This "Inventors Ball Room" was alot of fun! I think I was having as much fun as the kids in it:) It was full of these golf ball sized foam balls that you could do all kinds of things with. You vacuumed them up with these big hoses, they came dumping in there from all sorts of places, threw them in the fans and watched them scatter.....and on and on.

This was a huge marble exhibit that was really interesting to watch. It was supposed to teach you about probability.

These were just a few photos I got there. It was a great field trip and we're glad we got to go!

Ready to go home!

Working Around Here....

I've just been thinking that alot of my posts are the fun things we do together; so I'd better do a post of the other side of our "real life" around here:) Not that work can't be fun...several of the kids actually enjoy some of their "work" or "chores". Or at least it gets done with minimal complaining usually. Griping DOES happen at times too!!! Do you ever wonder what other families have their kids do for chores? Just thought I'd share some of my kids' responsibilities:)

So for starts, here's how our basement gets many times!!! But I can send a cleanup crew down there and it can be fixed really fast. This particular time I had Camille and Garret do it.

In about twenty minutes it looked like this:) Not perfect....but great enough for me to consider it done! Of course, the big kids can do it alot quicker and nicer...but I want the little ones to learn too!

Our school days start by getting up at 7:30. (we are just getting back to that schedule after being thrown off by the recent time change!) Before school starts at's what the kids do. Of course they all eat and get dressed/comb hair. One of the girls put away all folded laundry and vacuum all the hard floors. The other one empties and fills the dishwasher. Some of the days, the clothes person gets a break since I now only do laundry twice a week.

By school time...things are looking all shined up and ready to go:)

Chauntel has been doing alot of the bread baking. I sometimes help her with part of it. She seems to enjoy it, though.

Chauntel and Alexa help with Jared so much. They love to come snatch him from me and take him to play.

One of Alexa's favorite ways to entertain the little kids is doing art work with them. Many times I can hear her asking them if they want to "do art". Of course they always tell her yes and she whisks them away to do it.

Blayne's morning (before school) chores are taking care of the chickens. Rain or shine....he heads out there to care for them. He also does it again later in the day. More of his chores are helping clean the garage, (which always seem to be a mess no matter how much we clean it!) starting the fire, and doing any baking or cooking he can get his hands on. And, of course, they all have to clean their rooms once a week or for sure once every two weeks.

Garret and Camille love to help with the dishes. They also have to do quick clean up around the house quite a bit. Alexa and Chauntel also do the lunch and supper dishes and help with supper clean-up. Zac is our empty the garbage man; and is great for showing up at supper making time and known for his offers to help me make it. He has peeled countless potatoes, fried many, many pans of hamburger, and cut up lots of veggies for me too. I love the help!

I know I didn't name half of the things they do...but these are some of them. Of course, summertime brings mowing and they help Dad with any outside chores, like wood cutting/stacking, whenever he needs. So, they are all a big help and I definitely feel blessed to have all their little hands to help me keep up the house! I remember back to the time where I did most things by myself or with the help of James. I feel quite spoiled now! I've learned to never underestimate what they can do. Where there's a will, there's usually a way! It's fun to see my overly energized toddlers turning into very helpful, bigger kids!

Another thing that James and I have learned through the years is that when we do have a busy Saturday full of chores or projects that the kids are helping us with...stop and do something enjoyable with them. Show them how much we appreciate their help and do something fun as a family too! Otherwise you can wear them out! Let them know that as a team we can accomplish alot, but then we have time to enjoy life together also! Life is not only about work...but we really want them responsible enough to realize that life is also not only about play! Work and chores need to be done whether we feel like it or not!

Hopefully this wasn't too uninteresting:)

Friday, March 4, 2011

Jared's Walking! And Today Was Art Day:)

He finally decided to do it! Started doing some real first steps to Alexa a couple weeks ago! He hadn't really shown any interest in walking until this day. He's been standing up and walking around furniture since he was 8 months.

She was sure excited....right along with the rest of us!!!

So Daddy decided to get in on it:)

Such a fun time seeing those first steps accomplished! Now he's been doing it more and more every day.

Today for art we studied the color wheel...primary colors and how secondary colors are made, etc. Review for the big for the little kids. Using oil pastels and markers, they colored their wheels.

Everyone watches as my little helpers made the secondary colors for us. They thought it was great to play with the food coloring:)

Jared is self entertained as we worked on our projects. Loves to play with a bunch of "stuff". Played there happily for a long time.

Helper Zac makes another secondary color for us.

Here they are painting or drawing on their covers for this coming months "Famous Artists" study we are going to be doing.

Painting to their heart's content.... and loving it all the while!

Then we did some spin art. We had barely started and the machine broke down! What a bummer! Blayne talked me into letting him take it apart to see if he could fix it. I finally let him and was soooo glad I did! He got it going again and they got to finish the project in the afternoon! This was Chauntel's creation.

They all got to make one...the colors of their choice.

Everyone enjoyed watching while someone else did theirs:)

Don't know why this picture turned on me! Anyways, this is what we ended up with! Fun little project.

Here are the art books with pockets to hold the different types of paintings we plan to be making in the coming weeks. They got the book and the covers designed today. Some drew, some painted, some colored with oil pastels....whatever they chose to do.

Here are some of the color wheels and spin art.

Blayne hung some of them up for decoration in the school room:)

Well, that was our day. It's nice to have time to "play" during school time! We all really enjoyed it. So this was my "fun" post and I decided to have my next post be our "work" post. Life isn't always fun! We need to get our work done too..... I pray that God blessed you all with some good days today! Until next time, God be with you! Love Mona