about a dream

Saturday, September 13, 2014

Getting back in our groove.

Or at least, we're starting to.

Last week was our first full week of school, and things seem to be going smoothly. Before Nick left, he was walking up to the bus with the girls and the dogs in the morning, and I was driving in by myself. The dogs always try to follow the girls on to the bus, and it's just adorable. Then generally they've been walking over to the high school after school, and we've been finishing up the day together before heading home some time after 3.

On Tuesday, the girls and I took Nick to Portland to get the bus to Austria. We had some dinner at Appleby's and got back home at around 9. Tuesday was quite a busy day!

On Wednesday I took Maggie to get 2 more cavities filled, and again that went fantastically. She just puts her headphones on, watches a movie, and has a great time. She has no idea yet that she's gotten shots of novocaine, and I intend to keep it that way. The dentist puts a local on there first and hides the needle inside a case thing. She massages Maggie's cheek to distract her and does the injection really, really slowly (it takes nearly a minute). By going so slow, Maggie can't feel anything (turns out it's the novocaine going in more than the actual needle going in that's painful! If you do that really slow, it's not painful).

Today, the girls and I went apple picking at Biscay orchard. Fun! Usually we don't go apple picking until the end of the season and most of the apples are gone. Biscay just opened on Thursday though, so there were TONS of big, juicy apples. They're still ripening that last little bit, so they're a tiny bit on the tart side, so we didn't get a ton (only 20 lbs). We'll go back in another week or two though! I'm sure we'll be ready for another 20 lbs by then!

Now 2 of Nina's friends are over for a sleepover (cross your fingers for me!), and the girls are upstairs playing with their American Girl dolls and the dogs and I are hanging out on the couch, blogging. Not a bad day!

Monday, September 8, 2014

A September miracle!


A sunflower I grew in my garden!!
 Wow! I've tried sunflowers before, and this is the first time one has ever bloomed! Oh sweet success!! And, knock on wood, there are about a dozen more to follow! Maybe I just have better luck with flowers than with vegetables. Though, I did quite fine with snap peas and green beans this year, so I guess I shouldn't complain too much.

Yesterday I spent a great deal of time clearing brush. I can't find a before photo, so I'll just go straight to a now:

Trust me, there are a lot of saplings that you don't see...
 After dinner, the girls and I spent a lot of time outside, bouncing on the trampoline and playing on the swings. We had the most beautiful sunset!

The sky was just glowing! And Vanessa, I took those last 2 photos with the iPad. Hopefully the quality is better.

Maggie's second day of school went much better than her first. She says now that first grade is "good." Fourth grade is also "good." They have no further statements at this time.

Oh, and my classes are "good" too!

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

First day of school!!!

Fourth grade and first grade! Look how cute they are!! Look at those sweet faces!

Look at those braids!
 They were, dare I say, somewhat excited to go back to school. They like their friends, they like their teachers, they like doing stuff without me for a change.

But when I picked them up from school, their faces looked more like this:

One as thrilled as ever, one angry. I'm sure you can guess which was which.
I'm not really sure what went wrong with Maggie. She was upset that one of her new classmates carries an EpiPen, which apparently hurts if she gets injected, but will save her life. I think she wasn't certain that she won't ever need an EpiPen, but clearing that up didn't help much. So we went to the Ebb Tide and got some grandma, fries, and strawberry frappe. Then life was good.

She's agreed to give it one more try tomorrow. If that doesn't go well, she's dropping out.

Nina likes her new teacher, but I didn't get too much else from her. With prompting, I've managed to get that they have snack early this year, and they made a somewhat involved craft.

Monday, September 1, 2014

The rest of Labor Day weekend

Yesterday we started the day by taking the dogs up to the top of the hill and cheering on the runners doing the Harborfest Half Marathon. One of my friends and fellow teachers was running, and the girls had even made her signs. Aw!

Aren't they just adorable!

 The signs say "go Lauren" (Maggie's "g" is backwards, don't say anything! She doesn't take constructive criticism very well!). They both picture a bunch of people running, and Nina's says "Lauren in the Lead." Nina is an excellent cheerleader.

And a savvy, retro dresser!
Maggie is NOT such a good cheerleader. The first people that ran by, we clapped for. Great. Then the next group, Maggie shouted, "YOU'RE NOT WINNING!"

Embarrassing! It's a small town, you know?

So I told her to say something nicer than that, which she forgot about by the time the next group of runners came by. So again she shouted, "YOU'RE NOT WINNING!" until finally she got the message and told the next group, "I LIKE YOUR SHOES!"


THEN, we kept checking to see if the next runner was Lauren, and one time she goes, "No, that's not Lauren, that's an elderly woman." Eventually the jogger starts by us and she turns and says "Oh, that's not an elderly woman, that's an elderly man."

So embarrassing!!

Finally, she just stuck with "Good job!" Relief. Then Lauren came by and we high-tailed it home. It's a wonder I'm not more gray.

But gosh darn it, we're such a cute group!!

Sunday, August 31, 2014

Labor Day weekend

Busy weekend! We left the house at noon on Saturday to drop linens, blankets, and towels that the thrift store didn't want to sell off at the animal shelter. We've been doing that particular job for months now, but yesterday was the first time that we managed to drop stuff off during the hours that the shelter is open to the public. So we got to walk a dog! Meet Eve:

She and Nina hit it right off.
Isn't she so pretty? She's a bulldog, American we think. Note the cute spots and up tail!

She was so sweet! Very shy, and so easy to walk. Not constantly pulling and tugging like Marley!

After that, it was lunch at Five Guys, back-to-school shopping at Target, and a trip to the zoo. Ok, ok, Petco. We watched the birds and mice for the longest time, it was so much fun.

Then it was over to the bowling alley for Joseph's surprise 30th birthday party! So much fun!! We ate and ate and ate, and bowled and bowled and bowled. In the end, Dad and Erik tied for first, then came mom, Nick, me, and Maggie and Nina (I can't remember the order at the end there). I only did so well because I had the lane guards up. Bowling gutter ball after gutter ball is just no fun.

We left the camera in the car, so here's a photo of us heading home:

Happy, sleepy campers!!

Friday, August 29, 2014

The summer days, they're a-dwindlin'

Oh, the sadness is descending on our house. On Monday and Tuesday I had to work! What is this work? I am not sure I remember?...

Mom had to go to work at 1-ish, so I made sure to leave enough to keep the kids occupied and out of Nick's hair until I got home at 3:30. To that effect, I made them a scavenger hunt and a treasure hunt!

One of the items on the scavenger hunt was to photograph a bird. I figured, that'll keep the girls pretty busy, they'll have to be patient, look for some birds, try to get a picture. Genius, right?

Here's what I got:

What's that on her shirt? Leaves? Attached with tape??

This one has a yellow cup on her face...
 They're birds. Har har children.

That's ok though, Nina made up for it by making pancakes. All by herself! She was all, "I want some pancakes," and I was all, "well I'm too busy to make any, and they're too much work, so no." And she was all, "Fine, I'll make them myself."

And she did!! She googled "fluffy pancake recipe" ("fluffy"!), followed all the instructions, and presented us all with this amazing, golden stack of pancakes!!

Those pancakes had some serious fluff.
Then Maggie got buried in some stuffies...

Where is she? Oh yeah, there she is!
Then she exploded out. The fun!

Note that Nina's still wearing her apron in this photo.
So, overall Monday and Tuesday were a success. Then we were in Brunswick to get 2 of Maggie's cavities filled on Wednesday, bummed around the house and went swimming with our friends on Thursday, and back at school for me today. Thankfully, Nina made dinner (fondue), so I got a chance to relax! She's such an amazing cook! I can't emphasize enough how excited I am that she has such a helpful hobby. Nine is turning out to be the best age yet!!

Thursday, August 21, 2014

Nina's Birthday Party

Well, it was a week late, but today we finally celebrated Nina's 9th birthday with an American Girl Doll, spa birthday. What a success!

Nina and I spent all morning getting ready. Here's the Happy Birthday Banner above the presents table (complete with shimmery tablecloth).

No spa is complete without some hand-picked wildflowers...

I picked those myself. They really added that special touch...
Their sitter, Sophia, came by early, and helped us set up the nail polish station.

She did amazing manicures with glitter. Glitter! That's what you get when your sitter is valedictorian!

We also did aloe vera facials and a tea foot soak.

Maggie with cucumbers on her eyes. Aww!
 Actually, all of this was a plan for me to get some spa treatment!

Ahhh! It worked!!
 Look at all those nail polish choices...

One friend, Grace, is staying for a sleepover. She's never done a sleepover before, and her parents are skeptical, but we'll see!

We were eating dinner, and Grace was telling us a story about diarrhea, but trying to avoid saying the word. "Why is it such a gross word," she asked. "There should be a better one."

"How about 'loose stools?'" Maggie said enthusiastically, arms swung out. "That's better!"