Finn Makes it to Kindergarden

The peanut gallery

These clothes were his choice and this was the closest face to a smile I got (he said he didn't know how to smile).

The composed mom and the big boy (she was not so composed on the walk home).

These two have been inseparable (whether in fighting or playing) all Summer long. It was only fitting that they pose in front of the sign together!


Going Green
Or, if I were really going "green," I would've used green cloth napkins!


Happy Birthday, Ben!

Happy Birthday to my brother Ben today! To the one who gave Finn the name "Schull-Bob," who has a sweet job at Frito Lay, who is nice to his sisters, who has always been full of energy, wit and strength: I hope you have a great day.

I love you, Ben!


Dear Blog Readers (all two of you still left),
I am sorry for leaving you out of most of my Summer life. I am not sure where or when the desire to blog flew out the window, but I'm sure it will come back....sometime....soon. Everytime I go to write a post, the first things that come to mind to write about are mostly complaints (I feel too large to exercise, my kids' fighting is driving me crazy, it's hotter than a pepper sprout and even more humid here in Ohio, my husband has to study on our drive to the restaurant on date night, on and on and on). How pathetic, I know. I think this pessimistic shade was drawn when I got pregnant, as usually happens with me. I'm hoping that some regular- sweaty- excercise, once I deliver this wiggling baby, will help my mood immensely. Also, getting the kids back on a schedule, in school, will lighten the load a little (I've run out of physically-undemanding Summertime activities to keep them occupied). And, finally, hopefully, someday, knowing my husband has a secure job lined up will, I'm sure, drastically improve my outlook on things. I hate the thought of putting in all this time and money towards schooling and ending up unemployed (we're already operating on a very trimmed budget as it is, heaven forbid he graduates and can't find work! Those loans to pay back!)
So, there you have it: my current state-of-the-mind address, open for all to see, on this partly cloudy Tuesday morning from Cleveland. If you can't tell, I'm getting trunky, ready for the next big thing, feeling idle and wanting a project/a new vista/a new destination. I think I will start today by giving my kids haircuts, going to Wal-Mart for diapers, and maybe, maybe, if I'm up for it, taking them to the pool for one last swim before Summer turns to Fall.
Miss Ohio


Soaking It Up
While we still can.


A Glimpse
The toyroom looks like this 98% of the time. It will stay clean for about ten minutes, then Tornado Miles comes through, dumping out buckets of toys and then it returns to it's messy state.


Sticks + Glue

My current state of exhaustion is challenging me to infinity and beyond to keep my kids entertained and somewhat safe.

Luckily, we found the kids craft aisle on a recent shopping trip.

With all-purpose glue at 25 cents a bottle and popsicle sticks a few quarters more, we spent some time one afternoon last week making bird houses (or, more aptly, bird patios).


I don't normally like steak, but Travis made some great shish kebabs tonight for dinner on his new grill. The steak was tender and sweet, marinated in a mixture of sugar, soy sauce, garlic and ginger. I know come lunchtime tomorrow I'm going to wish I had some of these left over.


Lazy August Morning

When we're community-pooled-out, day-tripped-out and just plain worn-out, a laid-back morning at home is just what this mama needs.

Does anyone have any tips for keeping this almost two-year-old in his crib? I am not quite ready to transition him to a big bed. I have to wrestle him to the ground to tape his diaper on him or else it comes off in an instant. Is my sweet boy already hitting the terrible two's? Please say he'll hold off a little longer... And, btw, waking up at night with charlie horses is no fun. It makes me grouchy and tired all day long. Just noting.


Birthday wishes today to Miss Emily, my younger sister, who inspires me in so many ways. Her paintings hang in practically every room in my house, and my kids love getting packages from Auntie Em. She just finished biking a long stretch of Highway 1, along Oregon's coast, and she never stops seeking adventure. The thing I love most about Emily is her groundedness. She is level-headed, yet artsy. Since her days riding Topper or Blue singing "Les Miserables" or "Phantom" ballads out loud (and I have videos to prove it) she has proven she's not afraid to do her own thing. Which reminds me of her as a little toddler girl who wouldn't keep her clothes on.... Emily, I love you and hope you have a memorable, if not cake-filled birthday! The best is yet to come!


Sunday Lunch
Filling four stomachs (plus one tiny one), trying to sustain us all through church: the ultimate challenge.


Cleaning 'Er Out

Our impending Spring move, the baby coming and some serious cleaning out led to the Schuller yard sale this past Saturday. Man, it feels good to have our house "dejunked" and mostly cleaned out. The bouncy house didn't sell, but with a little help from Craigslist, I hope we can find her a good home. If you're local and interested, let me know!


And I Thought I Was Supposed to be Grouchy
Little Miss L. has a mean grumpy face. It looks even meaner when she's dotted her face with maroon eye shadow and shimmery cream. At least it makes me laugh, which helps when I'm feeling grumpy.