This summer brought many changes to our household and the way we do business.
As you know by now, I am 15 weeks pregnant with our 3rd Stu. We could not be more excited about it (extra credit for you if you read that like Chandler Bing). The first trimester was rough. Really difficult. I kid you not, I spent almost the entire month of June in bed. My body was utterly drained. I have never experienced that kind of exhaustion. I survived on saltines and peppermint candies and naps. My husband picked up the household slack (he's never more attractive than when he's doing laundry, cleaning the house, and cooking for the kids). The monsters didn't seem to mind my daily afternoon snoozing... I think Riley was just happy I wasn't yelling at him to put down the iPad.
I am happy to be back in the land of the living.
New School Year
We have some exciting news to share! Baby Stu 3 will be arriving in late January 2019!
I know, I kind of can't believe it either.
It was incredibly difficult not to share the news with the monsters. They have been asking for/talking about a little one for almost a year. It will sporadically come up in their conversations. Riley has had dreams of being a big brother... although he is praying for a baby brother (he feels like he is surrounded by girls). Reagan's preference is a baby sister, but she said it doesn't really matter to her.
After Stu and I went to the 8-week appointment, saw the peanut on ultrasound, confirmed the due date, confirmed there is just ONE baby brewing, we ordered these shirts from Etsy. Then we (somewhat impatiently) waited for them to arrive.
The day the shirts arrived, I wrapped them in cute gift bags and we surprised the kiddos.
Every week is something new
R & R are having tons of fun reading about their baby each week. We read about its progress, its size, what stuff is developing. They are quite into it. At Reagan's request, we have begun taking weekly pictures. I love it and her enthusiasm, but I feel so bloated and blah right now.
My body kicked into overdrive... by the third pregnancy, it's like "Oh I know what to do! Let's shift all this abdominal stuff around and make her look pregnant right away!" Sometime in the 10th week, my stomach was sticking out (more than usual)... but it was still jiggly and fat. Not cool. At the end of my 11th week, I had a legit baby belly. One night Stu looked at me and said, "Wow! Your tummy popped out!" I'm happy that now its hard and more circle-like. No doubt about it, there is a baby in there.
I'll share more of how I feel and preggo updates in other posts. Right now we are all reveling in the news!
Oh man, I love this song. I've been a tad obsessed with it this week.
Reagan has been navigating awkward social situations at school lately. She's a smarty, like VERY intelligent. And the entire class knows it. Sometimes she feels singled out for it. And it makes her uncomfortable. I have been telling her to just be her. She can't be anyone else, just do you babe. It will all pay off later...
Thunder, by Imagine Dragons, is perfect. We were singing and dancing to it on the way home from gymnastics. I hope the lyrics will sink in and permeate. (Lyrics and song below)
Who says homework has to be done inside?
We have had several days of completely gorgeous weather. The temps are amazing, the sun has been shining. Heaven on earth. So I suggested that Reagan do her reading on the patio inside of at the kitchen counter (as is the homework custom). She jumped up and ran out. It seemed like a great time to grab the camera.
*sigh* I love this girl, this photo, everything. The BFG is one of my favorite books. I remember reading it as a kid. Then Reagan and I read it together when she was in first grade. Now she is rereading it for school. Just the fact that she is happily rereading it speaks volumes of her love for literature and this particular book. I hope that love never fades.
I've been toying with this post for a while. Mostly in my head. Not sure how to write it. Not sure what to share.
The beginning of school is creeping up. As I have told you, we are sending the monsters back to school after having spent some time doing the whole homeschool thing. If you spoke to me personally after wepulled Reagan out last October, you probably got an earful about how horrible our experience was at the last school. You probably heard me cry, you listened to me say bad things about the teachers and administration, you encouraged me and told me I was doing the right thing. And for that, I thank you.
I'm so happy to tell you that both kids will be going back to a brick-and-mortar school in a few weeks.
As you know, we pulled Reagan out last October. And we pulled Riley out when we moved in April. Reagan and I had many conversations about school. She decided that she would rather be in school. She is ready to give it a go.
Words fail me here. I am beyond proud of her for her decision.
I am so grateful to my husband for pulling her out in October. I know removing her from her surroundings last year was the right move. The Reagan she is today is confident and more self-assured. The Reagan we withdrew from school was struggling and breaking from peer pressure.
She needed an environment where she felt safe to be herself. And homeschool/virtual school gave her exactly that.
So, it is with extreme pride (and quiet, internalized fear) that I get ready to send her back out into the world.
The Media Specialist at Buddy's school is awesome. She comes up with the most interesting, creative and adorable activities. She was the one who pulledoff the Ellis Island Immigration Day for the 2nd graders last year.
This year, the 1st graders put on a zoo. The students were each assigned an animal. Buddy came home one day and proudly declared he was going to be a gorilla. He needed a costume. The school said we could be creative, or not. It didn't have to be some elaborate, expensive costume. I thought we might be able to get away with black pants and shirt, with a mask. Buddy would have none of that. He told me to order a gorilla costume from Amazon. (insert eye roll)
I have always been a fan of project based learning, even when I was teaching in the public school system. In my opinion, it's an excellent way to see what a child has learned. So it should come as no surprise that I incorporate this into our homeschool life.
Reagan has been studying animals lately. Typical stuff, like classifications, vertebrates v. invertebrates. Interesting.
I thought it'd be awesome for her to put together a scrapbook of the animal kingdom.
My kids are obsessed with technology. YouTube is like heroin to them. They get angry and crazy if they go too long without it.
Buddy is actually less-addicted to it than his sister. Rea sometimes exhibits junky-behavior. It's a bit scary.
I have told her that I would rather she play on her iPod, than watch videos of other people playing. Maybe it's a generation thing...
A few months ago (or maybe longer), Rea decided she needed her own website. I thought "what a great idea!" I can teach her to blog, she can write, plan, code. It'd be awesome! So I built this website for her:
And then she wrote ONE post. Ugh.
Rea asked me if she could have her own YouTube page... we have a family one (and 12 whole subscribers - hahahahaha). But apparently, she cannot share with me. I told her I would let her on one condition: she needed to spend time on her website.
Yesterday, we downloaded this app called OSnap! This app is perfect for creating stop-action videos. I put the app on each's iPod. Both kids spent HOURS making videos. HOURS. It was glorious!
They set up their tripods (the ones that came with their Stikbots) and created several videos each.
Rea wrote a post about the app. As promised, she now has her own YouTube page.
If you have a YouTube obsessed child, please consider allowing him/her to subscribe to Rea's page. I know she will be checking (probably constantly). And if you feel like popping over to her site to see the post she wrote today, click here.
Thank you so much!
We had a series of terrible storms blow through our area last night, including a tornado or three. It was a crazy, stressful, sleepless night.
I am EXHAUSTED.
At around 1am, my phone beeped with the tornado warning. It said "get up and take cover." (<-- ok, that's a paraphrase.) It did the job though. I was awake. The lightning storm was crazy - quiet, but super bright. The lights woke up Buddy. He pitter-pattered into my room and climbed into my bed.
A few minutes later, my phone beeped. This time, it was my mom. She said I should go watch the TV.
The night unraveled from there.
Buddy and I were downstairs with my parents. The weather guy said there was a tornado in the area. My dad said we were in its path. I went upstairs and grabbed Stu and Rea. We brought pillows and blankets downstairs.
I really didn't know what to expect. I have never been in this situation before. Hurricanes?-No worries. Tornados?-No thank you.
My oldest child, Reagan, is 10 and my son Riley is 8. I'm also currently pregnant with baby 3! Everyday is a crazy day in the life of the Stus!