Sunday, August 25, 2013

Dinner with Ryan

Ryan is 14 months old and has found it is more fun to entertain his brother and sister during dinner than actually eat.  And Drew and Kayley only encourage his behavior by laughing hysterically.  It is hard not to laugh at him, but the more you laugh, the more "entertaining" he does.  And Sox LOVES Ryan during dinner time because Ryan is more than happy to share give Sox his food. 

It isn't all fun and games during dinner.  We do work on our manners!  :-)  Here is a video of Ryan saying "thank you."  He says "uh oh" and "thank you" regularly.  And that is about it!

Ryan moves up to the toddler room in September and I am not ready!  I love all the teachers at PALS and I know he will be just fine, but I don't want him to leave his school mom, Darcey, yet and I just don't want to acknowledge that he is growing up!  Another issue is the fact that he is going to have to do some "growing up" this next week to get ready.  The toddler room doesn't have highchairs and they need to feed themselves.  Ryan will not use a fork or a spoon on his own (he throws them on the floor or bangs them on the highchair).  He doesn't like us to spoon feed him either.  So, we end up with this most nights: 


I realize a lot of young toddlers eat like this, but this is the first toddler I will have in daycare and I just don't know how they are going to get him to sit at a table and eat his food without ending up looking like this!  Don't get me started on how they are going to get him to lay down on a cot and stay there!  They keep telling me that every parent wonders, but the kids just do it.  Good luck, I say!

And I have to add a cute one from before dinner!  Ryan's first time in the wagon.

Saturday, August 17, 2013

First Day of Kindergarten and First Grade!!

Friday was a big day in our house - Kayley started Kindergarten and Drew started First Grade.  And this mama was nervous!  First day of Kindergarten didn't start off well for Drew (lots of tears - him and then me!) and I was a little worried about a repeat performance from him and a similar one from Kayley.

We have been debating for over a year whether we should send Kayley to Kindergarten.  She is old enough to go only because she was premature.  If she had been full term, she would not be eligible for Kindergarten until next year.  After talking to almost everyone possible and getting nothing but encouragement to send her, we signed her up.  We have second guessed ourselves on more than one occasion, most recently the day before school started when Kayley had an epic tantrum in the middle of a store and ran off.  She certainly doesn't lack for personality.  I think we will definitely notice that she is not as mature as the older kids in her class, but I am hopeful that gap will get smaller as the year goes on. 

Academically, I think she is ready.  She recognizes all of her letters and can write most of them correctly (she has a tendency to write a few letters backwards).  She recognizes most numbers up to 30.  She is learning to write her numbers up to 30 and is getting better.  She is able to read some of the beginning reader books (e.g., Sam sat.  Mat sat.  Sam sat on Mat).  The books are terribly boring, but it is so exciting to watch her learn to read!  We haven't seen any signs of a learning disability yet, but we were told that wouldn't show up until at least first grade so that will be on our radar for awhile. 

I really hope we made the right decision and if Friday is any indication, we did!  She was excited to go to school Friday morning (despite the fact that Thursday night she told me she decided she didn't feel like going to Kindergarten anymore) and got right on the bus when it came.  No tears at all!  She did come back and give me an extra hug, but had a big smile on her face the whole time.  Let's hope the novelty doesn't wear off too quickly and she is still excited to get on the bus on Monday! 

Drew did great as well.  He loved Kindergarten last year so we knew he would love First Grade, but I wasn't sure how the bus would go on the first day.  He doesn't like change and if you get him out of his routine at all, he gets nervous and shy.  I am not sure if it is because he is another year older or if he knew he had to be a big brother for Kayley, but he didn't have any issues with his first day either.  It was probably a little of both. 

They were very excited when they got off the bus Friday afternoon.  Kayley's favorite part of the day - riding the bus!  She also liked recess and lunch.  I'm sure she loved the learning party as well.  :-)  Drew is realizing he is going to have a lot more homework than Kayley and he doesn't think it is fair.  I laughed and said, "you know what, Drew?"  And then he said, "I know, Mom.  You always say life isn't fair." And then he added, "but it isn't fair."  :-)

Friday, August 16, 2013

Unexpected Week at Home

We were told very recently that our division at work has to participate in rolling temporary layoffs, which means we have to take a week of layoff in the 3rd Quarter and another week in the 4th Quarter.  Other divisions have been doing them throughout the year and now my division has to join in.  Guess that is a downside of working for a cyclical company.  I'm trying to look at it as extra vacation...unpaid.  Luckily, Andy's group does not have to take a rolling layoff.

My Mom was already planning to spend this week here.  The kids had back to school nights and were out of daycare on Thursday and Friday so she was going to help watch them while we ran to the different activities and while we worked on Thursday and Friday.  She decided to stay even though I was going to be off and we have had a fun week.

On Monday, I drove up to Chicago to meet the cutest little baby, Samuel Sevandal Cohen!  He is SO precious and I was happy to cuddle with him!  I am not having any more babies, so I have to enjoy my friends' babies whenever I can.  I can't wait for my next visit!

Baby Sam!

On Tuesday, Mom and I took the kids for pictures.  You can see how that turned out in the previous blog post!  Tuesday night was Kayley's Kindergarten Back to School night.  Andy took Drew to football practice so he wasn't able to go.  Mom stayed with Ryan and I took Kayley to meet her teacher.  She was so excited to go and seemed to really enjoy it while we were there! 

Ready to meet my teacher!

Posing in front of the bus at school

Sitting at her desk

Wednesday was Drew and Kayley's last day at PALS so they went for the morning to say goodbye to their teachers and friends.  Mom and I picked them up at noon and then took them to Monkey Joe's. 


Wednesday was our anniversary so Mom watched the kids while Andy and I went out to celebrate.  Nine years!  We had a great time and definitely need to get a babysitter more often we decided.  The last time we had a babysitter other than my Mom was November! 

I took Drew golfing on Thursday afternoon.  There is a golf learning center close to our house and it has a 9 hole chip and putt course.  Drew loved it, but did complain once that he wasn't able to hit his driver!  I think he wants on a real course pretty soon, but he isn't quite ready for that yet.

Thursday night was Drew's Back to School night where he got to meet his teacher.  He had a lot of fun meeting her and seeing his friends from Kindergarten.  I had to beg him to let me take a picture of him at his desk.  They get embarrassed of us at such a young age!

Today was the first day of school for Drew and Kayley!  More about that in the next post!


Mom and I took Drew, Kayley and Ryan for pictures on Tuesday morning.  We were lucky to get one or two good pictures of Drew and Kayley as babies and Drew never got one year pictures because he cried the entire time both times we took him.  Ryan has been a different story - big smiles every time we take him - until now.  :-(  He was in NO mood for pictures and was terrified of the photographer.  Grandma and I worked HARD to get him to smile.  I did get one good one of the three of them and a couple good ones of him.  Drew and Kayley did great so I guess in about 4 years, I should have another good one of Ryan!  I would like to do family pictures this fall, but trying to get pictures of the three of them had me way more stressed out than I care to be so I am not sure I will do it! 

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

More Iowa Fun

Drew and Kayley spent one last week on the farm with Grandma and Grandpa before school starts.  We met my Mom and brother Matt at Adventureland last Saturday.  Drew and Kayley had a great time and we talked them into going on the Tornado (large wooden roller coaster).  They were a little unsure as we waited in line, but sat right down and buckled up when it was our turn.  They did great during the ride, but both decided they had enough of roller coasters for the day!  Kayley looked terrified as we were on the ride.  She may wait a few years before she gets on another one.  Matt and I rode the other roller coasters by ourselves.  :-)

Chuck Wagon...a little boring after the Tornado

Saw Mill water slide

Time for a snack

Kayley at the water park

We drove to the farm Saturday night and then Andy, Ryan and I drove back to Peoria on Sunday.  It was a quiet week, but Andy's dad spent the week with us and helped entertain Ryan who wasn't quite sure what to do with all of the toys and nobody bothering him!  The kids had another great time on the farm and Grandma sent me pictures throughout the week. 

Grandma and Grandpa are getting new flooring so
the table has been moved out of the kitchen.  The
kids loved eating on the tv trays!

Picnic lunch

The farm is tiring!

Future Farmer of America 1

Future Farmer of America 2
Here is one I took of Ryan last night.  Can't leave him out!

Andy and I golfed in a charity tournament on Friday and the Pour House tournament on Sunday.  First time in over a year on a course for me so it was a lot of golf in a short period of time for me!  I don't mean to brag, but (which means I am about to brag) I did get the longest drive in the Pour House tournament on Sunday (beating the men's city champion who was golfing in the tournament).  I was pretty happy with that considering I never golf anymore.  Andy didn't let me win the prize, but he did announce that I out drove the second place guy by 20 yards.  Definitely my longest drive ever so it was pretty lucky timing on my part.  I think I'll be done golfing for the year so I can end on a high note!