Spring Break

I finally have a bit of time to write a blog post now that this week is spring break. Since I’ve started on FB, I’ve been able to post there more since it doesn’t really take any time, and I can post pics from my phone.

Our family has been so busy in the last couple of months. I have to say I am looking forward to school being over for the year. I love my students, but the paperwork and planning is killing me. I hope if I decide to go back next year, it will be at least a little easier since I have one year under my belt.

My kids will be starting swim team at the Coast Guard base next week. It should prove to be interesting. I’ve never seen competitive swimming for 5-year-olds, so it may be a spectacle. The weeks between now and the end of school will be a pain because there’s practice twice a week and “meets” on Saturday. I don’t think the meets start for a few week, though.

Here are a few pictures from a couple of weeks ago. I can’t believe my kids are getting so..old. They don’t look like little ones in pictures any more! šŸ˜¦ Most of these were taken the day we went to sign the kids up on the base for swimming. There’s a nice lake area near the pool, so I took the opportunity for some long overdue pictures.

Kids being silly.

They could be bookends!

Honestly, I don’t know where she gets this.

Ok, that’s more like it. Thank you.

Here’s at our church’s Easter egg hunt. They were really too busy for pictures. There was candy to be had, after all. Binh wasn’t into having his picture taken at all this day.

Well, that’s about all I can muster for now. There’s lots of laundry to fold, so I’m off! Check in with me on fb if you’d like updates more often!

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Fall Photos

I haven’t had much time to take any pictures lately. So, we made a point to get out and take some photos of the kids, etc. over the weekend. I was wanting to use my new 50mm fixed lens so I could get some practice, so I only used that one for all the following photos. We were only out for a couple of hours, but it was fun to be with the family and take some pictures without thinking about much else.

Here are some that I took:

Enjoy, Tutu.

I’m Still Alive

I know it’s been forever since I posted anything, but it’s been a whirlwind at this house. Our family has been in the process of adjusting to me being back at work. Well, I’ve never worked since having kids, so they had a lot to get used to.

The kidsĀ have to go to before-care at school. That has not been a big hit. There were tears from Ava for many many days. Now she just mostly slumps in there and gives me a sad look before I leave. I have to get up at 5:00 am to get the kids to school and me to work by 7:10 am. Once a week (at least), the kids go to after school care. They like that much more because they get to play at the play ground for about and hour and half after school ends.

We also don’t have a lot of time after school or even on the weekends. I have to make lesson plans every weekend, though I’ve become a little more efficient. And, we eat out more than we used to during the week. It seems like we one of us (me or Ash) has some sort of meeting etc. every evening. We have gotten a house cleaner since I went back to work. It was Ash’s idea because he didn’t want me to feel so stressed about all the things I had to get done in my “down time”. He may have been getting fed up with our house in disarray, too! (There really is not down time, it’s just the time I’m not at my school!) It has been a wonderful investment so far. How great is it to come home to a clean house- one thatĀ I didn’t invest any time into doing? Ah, yes. A silver lining.

So, it’s been hard. Everyone tells me the first year is the hardest and that it will get better. I’m not sure that makes me feel a lot better! A year is a long time. There have been a few upsides. I have a pool of babysitters now! We’re going to go out to the movies tonight for the first time since I don’t know when. Another plus? Kids at school are starting to come by my room just to say hi or to tell me about something that happened to them during the day. One kid yesterday stopped by after school just to show me his art project he’d worked so hard doing. I bragged on it though I actually know nothing about art. It made me feel good to know he took the time to share it with me, though.

Also yesterday my students filled my board with messages of “I love Mrs. F____” in different languages (They know I love languages). That definitely helps make it worth it…

First Day 2011

It’s been a crazy week at our house, to say the very least. Ash startedĀ a new job. Well, same job, but at a new location. He’s still doing the same job for the navy, but we’ve technically changed duty stations. The new location is just on the other side of town, so we don’t have to move or anything.

I started my new teaching job. The kids are great, the other staff is great, but the getting up at 5 in the morning? Not so great. I also have to get the kids up and take them to before careĀ because I have to be there at 7:10am. This whole routine is going to take some getting used to. Also, I have to make spankin’ new lesson plans every week which is really time-consuming. I told one of my co-workers, who is the other new teacher at the school, that I wish it was next year. That way, I would already have all this up front work finished.

Now the part you really care about. The kids had their first day. So far, they are both loving school and doing great. Ava cried the other day when she had to go to before care, which broke my heart, but she really likes kindergartenĀ and her teacher. I was a little worried about how Binh would do around adults he wasn’t used to, but the staff at the school had been “working on him” since last January. The principle and other preschool teachers always made a point to speak to him when I picked up Ava, so he already knew them a little bit on the first day. His teacher told me he is a regular social butterfly, that he talks to her and the other kids. What a huge victory! I had prepared them that Binh may not talk for 6 months since that’s what he did in Mom’s Day Out, but I guess he was just ready to get to school.

Both of my kids seem to be teacher’s “helpers”. Since Ava will not nap at school, she has been the “nap monitor”. The teacher leaves the room during nap time to go make copies, use the restroom, etc. and Ava makes sure no one gets rowdy while the teacher is gone. This little job is right up Ava’s alley since she loves to boss and tell on people! I’m joking (mostly) šŸ™‚ Binh has helped his teacher with teaching the rest of the kids what vowels are and what they “say”. He apparently also taught the other kids their shapes. I hope he continues to enjoy himself. So far, so good.

Here are a couple of pics I quickly took before heading off to school on the first day.

I know Binh looks a little apprehensive in this photo, but I think he was totally fine. He just hates picture time.

Here’s Ava at her desk on the first day. I went to Ava’s room first and Ash accompanied Binh. Then, we each took a little time at the other’s classroom. I did a really quick job of blurring that kid’s face in the background and erasing our last name. But isn’t my little gal a sweetie?

Five? How Can That Be?

My baby girl turned five years old last week. In a way it seemsĀ  both like she was just born and that she’s beenĀ aĀ part of our lives forever all at the same time. I remember taking her home from the hospital, when the nurses handed her to me, thinking “I can’t believe they just let people walk out with these things!” It was surreal to think she was mine for the rest of my life, and just like that I was in charge of another human being.

Ava is busy and full of life these days. She is sweet and loves people, a total extrovert. She thrives on interaction with others and has a great time playing, laughing, and acting silly. She hasĀ a sense of humor similar to mine in that she loves words and plays on words. Plus, she is great at imitating accents. Sounds like an auditory learner to me…

For Ava’s birthday, she was able to have a family party and a day with a couple of friends. My parents and nephew came to visit, so she got to have cake, singing, etc. with them. She loved having Tutu visit. Girl loves her Tutu. I think she likes because Tutu will sleep in her bed with her becauseĀ Ava hates sleeping in her room alone. The day after her birthday, I took her and a couple of friends to get these kid’s mani/pedi/hairdo’s. It was so funny to see her there with her feet in the water. She and her friends had a ball. The salon is for kids, so they had “Max and Ruby” on tv while they were getting all gussied (sp?)up. It was a big day for everyone.

I haven’t done any pictures for her fifth birthday, but I hope to get some in this weekend. In the meantime…

Ava insisted that she have a surprise party. I think the concept of “surprise party” was lost on her, because she told us that she wanted one, then told us what to do. She said when she wasn’t in the room we were supposed to hide in different places (she specified that) then she’d come in and we’d yell “surprise!”. So, that’s what we did. This one I took right after we jumped out at her.

Ah, nothing warms my heart like a girl with a microscope. Ava got this one for her birthday. She’d been asking for one for months.

The girls had a ball getting their nails done.

Plus, getting a cute hairstyle and lots of glitter is never a bad thing either!

Ava is such special little girl with a sweet, tender heart. It’s a joy to be her mom. I love you, baby girl!

Mother’s Day

Happy Mother’s Day to all my mom-friends out there. I hope you had a relaxing day, full of love and gratitudeĀ from your family. Because tomorrow it’s back to reality- car pool and cleaning toilets! tee-hee!!

I got exactly what I wanted for Mother’s Day from my family. Yes, there was love and gratitude, but I got a ComposTumbler!! What? You don’t know what that is? I have wanted this composterĀ for about 3 years now, and praise be I finally got one. Ok, so it hasn’t been delivered yet, but it’s on its way. Ash said the woman on the phone laughed when she found out this was a Mother’s Day gift. I can’t say I blame her, but it really is something I wanted. I don’t think Ash really had any choice with me dropping hints like, “Nothing says I love you like a ComposTumber”. šŸ™‚

We taught Sunday school this morning, went to church and out to lunch. Other than that it’s been a pretty quiet day. The kids made some really adorable gifts for me. Ava made a bouquet of “flowers” made from cut-outs of her hands, and Binh made a hand print flower on paper that must have been all glue because it was covered in glitter. Very cute. They’re displayed now in our kitchen.

I must admit there are days I question why on earth I had kids. Then there are days like today when I see these sweet faces and I think , “Oh yeah, that’s why”.

Thanks family. I love you guys.

Who Knew?

A couple of nights ago we went to Olive Garden for dinner. The kids had dentist appointments in the evening after school, so, you know, we had to go out since it was getting late. I found it strange that Ava didn’t want to eat her spaghetti since she usually loves it, but I thought she was just getting tired from all the running around that day. That night she got up about 10:30 and said her jaw hurt. She blamed it on the dentist, but I assured her he had done nothing to make her jaw hurt.

I checked her before school the next morning. She was bouncing around the house and didn’t have a fever, so I took her to school. Well, they called at about 10:00am and said she said her ear hurt but she didn’t have a fever. Since I knew what had happened the night before, I decided to try to get her to the doctor. I picked her up and she was acting totally fine. In fact, she wanted to go back to her class for snack time while she was waiting for me to get there.

We ate lunch and went to the doctor at about 1:30. We didn’t get home until 5:00pm. I was just wanting the doctor to see her incase she was starting to get an ear infection because Binh’sĀ birthday party is Friday and I wanted her to feel good for that. Well, the doctor took one listen to her lungs and the ear went straight to the back burner. She was very concerned about her wheezing and crackling in her lungs. We ended up having to give her a breathing treatment and going to get a chest x-ray at a different clinic. It was all very surprising. The doctor kept asking me if she had wheezing like this before, if she had been in the hospital, if she had eczema-Ā all to which the answer is no. I must have looked flabbergastedĀ at all the questions because she said she couldn’t say this was asthma, but she definitely had bronchitis and possibly a touch of pneumonia. A touch of pneumonia? She was acting totally normal and had no fever? How did I suddenly become the most out-of-touch mom ever? I missed pneumonia? How do you have pneumonia and still want to go to dance class. (which of course we didn’t. We were busy getting a chest x-ray during that time anyway.)Ā Oh, and yes she did have a horrible, fluid-filled ear as well. Just to be clear, yes she’d been coughing, but so has the rest of the South with all this pollen floating around. She’s been blowing her nose and the mucus has been clear. It doesn’t look infected like when Binh had pneumonia. (that mucus was disgusting…) I thought she had some allergy issues and that’s it….weird.

So they sent us home with a spanking new nebulizer and now I’m doing breathing treatments with her every 4-6 hours today. They said she could go to school tomorrow if she feels like it. (believe me she does) but they want to see her again Friday morning “just to check her before he weekend”. I have some asthma issues but nothing too serious, so I leaning more toward she’s starting with something like that. Poor kid. She’s apparently pretty sick and no one knew it. Just hand me my Mother of the Year award now. I’ll put this one up on the shelf with the one from when I let Binh flip out of a shopping cart at Wal-M*art.

In her honor, I’m posting a few pictures of my girl from just a few days ago.

This is one for my family because they were asking about her hair. Her head is tilted back a little, but you get the idea.

Just a couple more, because this gal simply hates having her picture taken..

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