Tuesday, August 30, 2011

She loves homework. and her brother.

Lana comes home from kindergarten most excited when she has homework to do. 
She loves to sit at her desk and use her supplies and complete her work.

And of course, when Lana finishes her homework,
Tucker wants to do some, too!
She is such a good big sister.
She "wrote" him some work, too.

Our life is better when she's home
and it's time for homework.  :)

Monday, August 29, 2011

Monday morning blues.

This little girl is the reason that
I now love Friday afternoons
and dread Monday mornings.

In honor of my Monday morning blues, 
here's a list of things that I miss about Lana while she's at school- 
in no particular order.
  • It's not as fun to read books without her to listen.
  • I have no one to talk to me in complete sentences.
  • Tucker gets bored far more easily.
  • The house is too quiet.
  • I miss her encouragement: "Good job cleaning the house, Mommy!"  "Oh, that's a good lunch!" "You said that nicely, Mommy," and more.
  • Dance parties aren't as fun.
  • I don't get to play with baby dolls or with Barbies.
  • I only get half the kisses and hugs.
  • There's no one to scheme with.  Lana & I are experts at "making a plan" together, and her little brother's just more of a go-with-the-flow kind of guy.
  • Her laugh.  Oh, I miss hearing that laugh ring out across my house while she's at school.
  • There's only one hand to hold as we cross the parking lot.
  • The questions aren't nearly as fun to answer.  Tucker did recently learn to ask "Where going?" and "What's that?" which are awfully precious, but don't hold a candle to "Why do you think God actually made biting flies?" and "If Satan repents and believes, will he be saved?" and "What are little girls in Japan doing right now?"
  • Oh, I miss her notes sliding under the door during rest time.
  • When we're doing something really fun and exciting, Tucker's first response to me is "Lanny!  I get Lanny!"  Such a letdown when he discovers she's not here.
  • I don't have anyone to sing along with me in the car - solos aren't nearly as fun as duets with my girl.
  • Lunch for 2 just isn't the same as lunch for 3.
Other Monday morning thoughts:

I remember my mom telling me after I went to college that sometimes she just went and laid on my bed.  At the time, I thought it was funny and a little strange, and now I totally get it.  

Before we had kids, I taught first grade at an amazing little neighborhood school in Fairhope, AL.  Each year I welcomed a new crop of 21-25 six and seven year olds.  I had no idea then how hard it must have been on some of those parents - how they were literally handing their hearts to me for safekeeping and education.  I blithely ushered them in my cottage door, and taught them how to read and write and garden and dance and color in the lines and take turns and cut with scissors and complete literacy centers and use computers and share.  I did it all with a smile because I loved it so, but I had no idea what had been entrusted to me.

Edited to add: I just have to make a note here in our record of family memories how good God is.  I wrote this blog late Sunday night, and was having a really hard time falling asleep.  I was praying for my girl and her teacher and for our family as we adjust to this new way of life.  Just before I went to bed, I checked email one last time, and had an email from her teacher asking if I would volunteer in their classroom on Monday mornings.  WOW!  That is exactly what I needed to get our week started.  I'm so thankful that her teacher welcomes me into her classroom, and for a dear friend here at church who is willing to keep Tucker so that I can be with my girl.

Saturday, August 27, 2011

Life in a beach town.

This morning we hopped in the car as soon as we woke up and headed to Langdon Beach at Fort Pickens!  When it cools off, we'll explore the fort, but today we just wanted some sand between our toes.

When I went in Lana's room to tell her,
she couldn't have been more excited!

Tucker insisted his bear-bear needed to wear shades.

This is where they waited for us to load up the car - so happy.

We couldn't believe how beautiful the water is,
and that we really live here.

North Carolina peeps,
come visit!
It's the softest, whitest sand you've felt, 
and the ocean is caribbean blues and greens.

 My beach baby:

 Tucker loves to look at the water.  
The whole drive over, he was pointing at the water and calling out
"My pool!  Look!  My pool!"

Actually getting IN the water is not nearly so fun for him.
As I was taking this picture, he's yelling
"Out!  I get Mommy!  I get out!!"

Dan did talk him into "swimming."
It looked like this:

Much happier in the wagon, with a snack.
He did like watching the sea gulls.

And this beautiful girl just wandered up and down the beach, in and out of the water, digging in sand, chasing birds, finding shells.

boat time, snack time

We couldn't snag a good picture, but there were porpoises jumping.


This was just what our family of four needed.

We only lasted a couple of hours because there were some nasty biting flies,
but locals say that they aren't usually there.  
It turned out to be the perfect amount of sand and sun for us,
and as I type this, these 2 are napping.

We will never take it for granted that we live in a beach town.
So thankful for sand and sun and our family.

Friday, August 26, 2011

5 Davis cousins

Dan's brother and his family live an hour and a half away from us.
That's so, so much better than 12 hours.
We loved spending a Friday afternoon and evening with them -
hopefully the first of many more to come.

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Grandma Jean's Famous Raspberry Bars

Disclosure: I don't have a grandma Jean.  But a friend of a friend does, and she passed on grandma's recipe for raspberry bars that makes me wish I did, in fact, have a Grandma Jean.  Had to share it with you.

“Grandma Jean’s Famous Raspberry Bars”
·      1 ¾ cups Brown Sugar (packed)
·      ¾ cup Margarine or Oleo
·      1 ¾ cups Quaker Oats
·      1 1/3  cups All-Purpose Flour
·      ½ teaspoon Baking Soda
·      ¼ teaspoon Salt
·      ½ cup Wheat germ
·      1 cup (about one 12 oz. Jar) Raspberry Preserves (spend the $$ and get the good ones - it makes all the difference.)


Preheat oven to 400 ⁰. Grease and lightly flour 13x9 pan. Beat margarine until fluffy. Gradually add Brown Sugar and beat on low speed until well blended.

Combine flour, soda, salt, and wheat germ in separate bowl. Mix well. Stir in oats and add combined dry ingredients to butter and sugar mixture. Mix well (using your hands can sometimes be a quicker way to obtain crumbly texture).

 Divide mixture into two even parts. Press 1/2 of mixture into greased pan. Top with preserves within 1 inch of sides of pan (preserves will spread to edges while baking). Sprinkle remainder of crumb mixture over the top of entire dish.

Bake 20 – 25 minutes or until golden brown. Don't overbake.

Cool for 1 hour.  Enjoy!!

Monday, August 22, 2011

First Day of Kindergarten

Today was the big day!

My precious baby girl was all smiles this morning.
She popped out of bed at 6:30 a.m. without me waking her.
She nibbled at her breakfast of choice - 
whole wheat apple cinnamons muffins and conecuh sausage.
She asked to sit in the far back of the van so that she could sit beside her bookbag.

We parked and walked her into her classroom.  

Happy, happy to be at school!

She didn't shed one tear, or hesitate one moment.
In and settled at her table, not one backward glance.
I didn't shed cry, either, until I got out the doors.
Dan kept Tucker for a few minutes so that I could go for a run.
I ran on the sidewalks just outside of her school and cried and prayed.
And after about 30 minutes, 
I got in my car and spent the rest of the day with this boy:

doing things like this:

and then I watched the clock and showed up way too early to pick up my very favorite girl in the whole world!  Can you see her waving like crazy?!  She was happy to see me, too!

This is the face I got when I asked her how school was today:
 Her major reports for the day included that she only had to have a few reminders to look at her teacher and stop acting crazy, that Ms. Fine gave them so many treats like monster cupcakes and chocolate kisses for _Kissing Hand_, and the only question she had was "Mama, what's the big deal about all the rules, anyway?!"  

She couldn't wait to look in her bookbag to show me her Take-home folder,
and dig out the special treat from her teacher.

so cute.

Her requested afternoon snack was chocolate chip cookies.  
Of course, my dear.

I love that before she even began eating her snack, 
she shared a cookie and some goldfish with her brother. 

A snack-time phone call from Daddy to find out how her day went.

My sweet baby was so tired by 4:30 that she could have gone to bed right then.  
A movie and after-work snuggles from Daddy helped.

Tucker had an especially early nap because he had to be up in time for us to go pick up Lana from school.  They were both pooped.

We ate Lana's specially requested dinner (baked chicken, broccoli, and mac & cheese) at 5:00 p.m., baths at 5:30 p.m., and kids were in bed by 6:00 p.m.  I don't think Lana even moved.

Day 2, coming right up!