May 31, 2007

Soon Come

I've begun the first preparations for our trip back to Sacramento, which basically consists of starting my lists. We'll leave sometime between Sunday and Tuesday. How's that for planning? Basically, when the milk and eggs are gone, when the laundry is done (enough), and when all the stuff gets put into the car, then, we'll go.

We met Melanie and Siri (awe-inspiring unschoolers) at the pond today, to search for crawdads, in the rain! Saylor showed Siri the crawdaddy catching trick, and they were off and running! The kids had a good time, Melanie and I shared an enlightening conversation and nobody melted!

I went out for a couple hours tonight with Pam, my eternal ooo!!! (love you, baby!) We had a margarita and a bottomless salad at Minerva's, then she came with me to Target to get diapers, wipes and pull-ups for our trip West. Also had to pick up a Pretzelmaker pretzel for Stone, because he was asking about them today, and wondering when he could have one. (everyone got one)

Tomorrow, we hang out with Grandpa Mike. He's taking us to Cosmos, and maybe some other touristy thing, then we'll go to his place in Custer to grill some goods for dinner. Saturday, I think is open right now, so that'll be my day for doing some major stuff to get ready to go. Then? Who knows? Maybe Sunday at the crack of dawn, we'll slip on out of town?

I just found out about this very cool site and of course my interest is piqued! Who knows??? There's such a big, big world out there and the possibilities are truly endless... I love that about our life, that we are open to the possibilities...sure makes for a Rich and Joyful one!

May 30, 2007

Crawdads, Unschooling and Family Time

In that order, that's what we've done the past few days. Monday, we headed down to the little park near our house, it's got a pond and a little run-off area with rocks in the water that make perfect hiding places for crawdads. So, the boys did that from about noon until 6:30 that day! We had such a great time, though! I love the days that I can let go of 'stuff' and just *BE*, and that was one of those days! I wasn't interested in trying to coax them out of there, just so I could do things that I thought were important to me (such as house work, which REALLY needed to be done, but it's gotten done bit by bit over the past days). Actually, while we were all there together, it never occurred to me that I should be anywhere else but right there where I was! Such freedom...and such a Gift to really be in the Moment, priceless, really.

There were many, many children there, of all ages and backgrounds. And they were delightful. I was having just as much fun with children we were just meeting as with my own! Actually, one little guy, Eli, reeeeally liked me! He hung out with me far more than my very own boys, who were so engaged! Eli is 3, incredibly beautiful, and sweet as can be! As I meandered around, checking out everyone's catch or running around playing with Sage, Eli says "Can I hold your hand?" Of course! When I was headed to the Suburban to retrieve the marshmallows that Sage requested we get while we were picking up lunch, Eli asked "Can I walk with you" Yep! As we were sitting there watching the kids hunt for crawdads and sharing marshmallows with all our new friends, he says "Can I sit on your lap?" Oh, he was precious! I sometimes meet children that I feel such a connection with, immediately, even if I've never laid eyes on them before. And I have this deep feeling for them, like they could be one of my very own. I wonder...

So, the day was magic! We all had a grand time and were the last ones to leave. On our way home, we helped a couple little boys on their bicycles who were trying to ride home (one bike with a flat tire) and carry a big cup full of crawdads. We loaded up the bike, stopped at the station to air the tire, then followed them home, they on their bikes, and the crawdads safely stowed with us. It made for much easier riding for the boys, and I could just see how proud that made my boys feel, to help these children even in such a small way. Good stuff!

Tuesday, we had a little informal Unschooling Gathering at the Library. It was a meeting for people interested in learning more and a veteran US'er came to share her experience and wisdom. There were 5 of us there, plus all of our kiddos. We ate some delicious food and had a good conversation. After the meeting, Adeline and Amy came over to our house to play for a while. Amy and I had tea while they played in/out/around the house. Saylor thought we needed to take Adeline down to the crawdads, so we did that, too. They were all successful! It was great to be able to visit more with Amy, she's a groovy gal, that one! We're already making plans to visit them at their home in Deadwood when we return.

And today, we spent with Barb and Emma. All day, and it was so lovely! We met around 9:30, grabbed some disgusting breakfast sandwiches from BK (uggh, still wanna gag just thinking about it) and headed up the mountain to Old McDonald's Farm. OMF is a great idea, but a bit of a rip-off, price wise, I think. Hate to be a downer, but 24 bucks to pet some animals, um, yeah, kinda steep. They've got pygmy goats, llamas, poultry of many varieties, calves, lambs, pigs, etc. I guess I just love how Reptile Gardens treats the locals. You pay once, and go as many times for the rest of the year for free. Your first admission is your pass from them on! And we only paid 21 or something there, and they have crocodiles, and snakes, and orchids, and prairie dogs and a huge sandbox, and staff that actually knows all about these exotic things.

After OMF, we met some other friends at McDonald's for more disgusting food, which the boys hardly ate any of, because they were all about playing with Cole, Zach and Luke. Then, after quite a long playtime there, we came back to my house for a while, then headed to my mom's house for dinner and hot-tubbing. Dinner was great (chinese take-out) I ate too much, but I think I was just generally od'd on fast food for the day. Barb brought some oh, so delicious, chocolately, coconutty, oatmealy bars for dessert. Yum. I hot-tubbed it with Lauren, Jarod, Saylor, Stone, Sage and Emma (in the rain, which was really cool!) but all the other grownups stayed inside. They're all such fun kids!

Now we're home, the boys are out and I should be too! Sweet Dreams...

May 29, 2007

Nothin' But Smiles, Baby!

Behind the piano, but still beautiful as ever!

The boys wanted Amy to sign their hands...she signed our CD, too...

Big Fat Grins! (Sage was just waking up after a little snooze through "Gone", her closing number)
That's what we had last night! From the moment my sister arrived, and we shared a glass of wine on the porch, to loading up all of our precious ones into the car, with *my* mom behind the drivers wheel, it was a fun, fun evening out with the ever-amazing Amy Steinberg!! :)

We had some fine cuisine (err, uh, Taco John's! but, hey, we LIKE it!) for dinner, and then hit the road to Hot Springs. Naturally, we listened to Amy all the way to Hot Springs, and it was the first time Barb (sister) heard her, but mom and I were singin' along to every song (the kids were, too!) We arrived in time to grab front row seats in the very intimate setting that was the venue for the show...chairs arranged in a semi-circle around the piano/guitar/mike stand. When she was at the piano, we mostly only saw her boa floofing around while she sang, but when she was on her guitar, OH YEAH! Perfect! There were probably 40 or so (i'm a terrible guesstimator) people there, and I saw many of them leaving with CD's in hand, so Amy's Music is sure to be shared and the Love will be spread...

There were a few children there, other than my three and Barb's one, and at one point Amy commented on how she loved to see children at her shows, and that's it's great when they're running around and being noisy, because that's what being a child is all about, and how it's awful when people try to shush them, and shove pills down their throat to calm them down! Mmm, mmm, my kinda gal!

Well, even though my smiler muscles began hurting from over-use, it was just an over-all spectacular night and I am ever-so-Grateful that I got to share it with people I love so much!

May 26, 2007

At the Skate Park

Sage found this broken skateboard, so began imitating what he was seeing the other skaters doing, jumping around on the board.

Stone catching some air...

Saylor just coming off a ramp and keepin' all 8 on the ground!

At the Farm

This is Wyatt, who just yesterday was a tiny little baby, and today, he's out rustlin' up a horse for my babies to ride. He's such a kind, compassionate soul, and just a really, really nice boy! We sure do love him a whole bunch!

We finally convinced Sage to give it a try, so he climbed into the saddle with his big brother while I led Roxy.

Sage giving Saylor some brother-love. He was happy to see him again, and asked where he was every morning upon waking. He does that every day, even when both boys are right there in bed sleeping beside him. "Where's Saylor? Where's Stoney?" Then I answer that they are right here, sleeping, "Oh." Cutie, cutes! And then he's slippin' off the bed and headin' downstairs, and saying "come down-tairs, mom".


At the farm...
my big *cool* boy!Perched on the fence, with a cool old barn in the background. My pretty boy blue...
Muckin' through the mud (and certain varieties of poo!)
So much fun riding Roxy, thanks Roxy!
Saylor, riding solo and doing great!

May 24, 2007

Thursday, May 24

As promised, here I am! :)

We left off Sunday, with a lazy day spent at home with Stone and Sage (Saylor in Murdo). Monday morning, my dad called, in need of a ride home to Custer after dropping off his car at the fix-it shop. He took us out to lunch at Q-doba, then we had a lovely drive to Custer. It's a beautiful drive, and really beautiful country. The boys checked out the horses there at his house, and saw the naughty little German Shepherd pup chase one of the horses, and get herself kicked (but she was ok, no injuries). But they did get the chance to witness how powerful a horse is, when in full swing and kicking about trying to ward off a pesky dog.

On the way back to RC, I saw a dog that resembled Max, so had to pull over and ask about her. Turns out, it was Max's sister, same litter and everything! (or so I conclude. He said she was a couple years older than Max, but all the other info just adds up to it being his litter mate) And I ALMOST brought Max with us to Custer, but didn't, now wishing I would have. It would have been cool to see them together. She (Miss Kitty) and Max have nearly identical markings around the eyes, and they were the only two of the bunch that had the dalmation spots. (Mama was a boxer, Papa was a dalmation, or vise versa? I always get it mixed up, John knows for sure) It was fun to meet her!

We stopped in Hill City next. Anytime I'm in Hill City, I ***HAVE TO*** stop at the Alpine Inn and order up a couple Napoleans to go! My favorite desert! Then, we browsed around the Granite Sports store, and I picked up a Life is Good hat (yellow with a little happy person sitting in a meditative yoga pose), and also a groovy green Life is Good T for John. He looks good in dark green! Then, we stopped at Everything Prehistoric for a cup of coffee and some hot chocolate for the last leg of our journey home. Stone got to check out some of the cool dinosaurs they have there. We need to go back and spend more time there, though.

This brings us to Monday evening. Robert (neighbor boy) is over playing, it's 7:45 and my phone rings. Saylor's been hit in the eye by a baseball while playing catch with some boys. HE'S OK! But...he needs his mama. He's not sure he wants to come home just yet, but he's quite positive his needs me to come be with him *tonight*. I throw a bag together, give the birds a fresh, full dish of food and water, shuffle everyone into the suburban, load Max into the back, and we're on the interstate heading towards Saylor by 8:30. We arrived in Murdo around 10:30 (which is now 11:30 Murdo time, they're CST, we're Mountain Time) Saylor is grateful to see me. I bring in the sleeping boys from the suburban, Saylor shows me the new kitties (eyes still closed new, CUTE!) and then I prepare myself for bed. Saylor decides he'd like to sleep with us, but I could see the pull of really wanting to stay up with Wyatt and his friend, Skylar, but also desperately needing two things: 1. Sleep 2. Me I didn't say anything to persuade him of which way to go. It was enlightening to watch him make a choice for himself, and he chose the one he knew to be right for him at that moment, but he figured it out all on his own, without any "you need to come to bed" mumbo jumbo from me. Smart kid!

The next day we went out to Grandpa's farm and rode Roxy the horse for a while. Also got to see a colt that had been born just hours before, pretty little black colt. We spent Tuesday night with another family and then headed back to Rapid City on Wednesday. My mom took the boys to her house Wednesday night and I helped unload and stock the weekly order at the Breadroot. I won't volunteer Friday, as my kid helper will be out of town for the holiday weekend, so I was putting in time where I could.

Today, we stayed pretty close to home. Saylor mowed most of the lawn, per his request. We dropped off the clippings at the yard waste spot. The boys wanted to go to the skate park for a while, so we did that, too. Stone was zipping around that skate park on his scooter like a pro! He's brazen, but never gets hurt. He's fun to watch, so confident and clearly enjoying the moment. Sage and I played and laughed, well, mostly I laughed at him, while the boys skated. He had me cracking up all over the place, he's so funny! While we were out, we picked up some groceries from the co-op and washed off the mud from driving those country roads for two days. Tomorrow, we're spending the day with friends. And that, my friend, brings us up to the Present. I'll get some photos up of the horse riding and skate park, and whatever else looks interesting, soon! Too lazy to walk aaaalllllllll the way downstairs right now! :) Until next time...


Too Tired

We've been up to quite a bit since Monday, and I have lots to blog about, but just can't do it right now. I'm beat. The babes are all sleeping, and if I hope to keep up with them tomorrow, that's precisely what I need to be doing right now.
So, Tune In tomorrow! I should be able to get something down then...
Sweet Dreams...

May 20, 2007

Surrendering Willingly

Today started out with me, having all kinds of expectations about what I thought should happen! And on top of that, I was choosing to be a grump! Yuck.

I'm happy to report that I surrendered to the flow of my children, and decidedly chose JOY!!! And because of that, we had such a nice day. There was roller blading, inside the house and across the street in a big, empty parking lot. There was barefoot exploration of puddles left from last nights rain. There was a conversation with my son, having a great time with his cousins in Murdo. There was cookie dough, eaten by the glob, straight out of the bowl, and enjoyed warm and gooey from the oven. There was a bath, shared by two beautiful boys and their Grateful mama. (and we just have a regular sized tub!) There was a mid-afternoon thunderstorm, that darkened the house and prompted me to light some of our candles, and enjoy their pretty glow. There was yoga, mom in the downward dog and little boys right under me, saying I looked like a triangle. There were so many other moments and details that simply can't be captured in words. My expectations of going to church and mowing? Out the window, and that's ok! The day was exactly what it needed to be, and it was perfect!

Stone's getting really good on his roller blades already, and has had them on most of the day, practicing going from here to there, and figuring out how they feel and how to work his body in cooperation with them. I had some time to catch up on blogs, and post a couple entries of my own! ;) John and I had the rare privilege of a 45 minute conversation. The boys and I will be heading back *home* to *him* very soon. We'd set a round-about date of mid-June, but I doubt we'll make it. As the days go by here, it becomes clearer and clearer of where we need to be... with him, all together, good or bad, thick or thin. As excited I was about coming home to our house, I'm more excited about returning home to John. He's my best friend...
The boys are expressing their desire, as well. Whenever we talk about going back out there, they say, "can we go tomorrow?" Yep, it's time, indeed! But, I must stay around long enough to hear the one and only perform in Hot Springs next Sunday (May 27). Her lyrics bring tears to my eyes...good tears, though! Time to snuggle with my boys and watch Charlotte's Web. Peace...

Little Things...

that I love so MUCH! (some more than others, obviously!)

Head East

We went to Clara's (John's Great Aunt) 80th birthday party today. It was nice to see so many of John's relatives, and everyone asked where he was of course! I felt so proud to be there with our three sons, and proud to be his wife, representing him when he couldn't be there. Everyone loves John! He's got that sort of effect on people, and I was reminded today of how lucky I am to call him my husband!

The boys spent the 3 hours of the party playing outside together. Wyatt (12) and Chase (4) were here from Murdo. They are the sons of John's Aunt Krysti, and are the boys' cousins. They enjoyed each other so much, and Saylor requested that Wyatt spend the night with us. The way it turned out, after some discussion, was that it might work better for Wyatt if Saylor went to his house for a few days. So, my oldest son is hanging out with his cousins, aunt and Grandpa in Murdo for a while this week. They've got some brandings they will be attending, so Saylor thought it was going to be pretty cool to be out there 'working' on the ranch with all the other big guys! I think Saylor really needed this time for *himself* right now, to be THE kid for a while, instead of 1 of 3. So, he packed his suitcase and headed East around 5:30 today.

That left Stone, Sage and I to decide what we'd like to do with the remainder of our day. Stone decided on a McDonald's visit, to collect one of the new Shrek 3 toys and play at the play land for a while. After that, we came home, where he immediately removed his shoes and put his roller blades on. (We ran to Target before the reunion because Stone asked if he could have some roller blades after playing around in the house with Saylor's this a.m.) He practiced for a bit, then took them off to play with the neighbor kids. I was invited to sit around the fire pit with said neighbor kids parents, so we played next door until about 8:30. I was getting chilly and Sage was getting tired (no nap again today), so we came home. Stone came home, too, but then Robert arrived at our door, asking if Stone could come play soccer in his backyard, and that Dean (dad) was out there and could watch them. Ok! Sage took a bath, fell asleep and Stone made his way back in to the house around 9:30.

He asked for some popcorn and wanted to watch a movie. We decided to watch one upstairs, in bed (helps mama, so I don't have to carry big boys up the stairs!) While the popcorn was popping, he said he wanted to do some Yoga. So, I popped in the Yoga Kids DVD and we did A-J (each letter of the alphabet has a pose, "alligator, butterfly, caterpillar" etc.) Oh, my! I think if I did this DVD everyday, I'd be in fabulous shape! As I said, we stopped at J (jabberwocky jellyfish!) and headed upstairs with our arms loaded with goodies to snack on. Stone picked out
The Cat in the Hat (Mike Myers one) and he's almost getting eyelids too heavy to keep open! I can't believe he's still awake!

Our day was a lovely one! The weather was cool and overcast, with gentle breezes. It's supposed to be 88 here tomorrow, so I'm hoping to mow and hang out in the yard all day! Beginning with my daily breve on the front porch, listening to the wind making music with our chime! Good times...

May 18, 2007

Friday, May 18

Today, as in most of our Friday's, we had a very full day. The boys were with me at the Breadroot for a couple of hours, then I took them to Mary's, where they played until I was done volunteering. Then, of course we had to play a little longer once I arrived, leaving the Triple H's (Haakon, Henry, Holden) around 4:30. Plans were already in the works for a park visit later in the day, but I really needed to go home for a bit, to re-center and re-lax. It was only when we were home that Stone could be convinced to eat a little something, as he didn't eat anything really at Mary's. That's Stone! He just gets soooo very into his play, that he focuses only on *that*, and the eating thing gets pushed aside. (Another reason we had to land at home for a while. I knew he needed to eat, and that he'd do it only if we stopped for a moment.)

Sage and Stone had a glorious mud puddle going in our side yard, but Saylor was very determined to go the park, so he kept going over to his little brother's, trying to get them excited about going, too! Eventually, it worked! We headed to Sioux Park around 6:30 and it was a most beautiful time of day to be there! The temperature was still around 85, there was no wind, but with the sun hanging low, it was so peaceful and still. We hung out by the creek for a while and a few of the boys looked for snakes. Saylor roller bladed, Stone scootered, the babies threw rocks in the creek, and I peeled oranges for everyone to share.

We left as it was getting dark, around 8:45 in these parts, and headed to Armadillo's for some late night ice-cream, and more running around, roller blading and scootering! Where do these creatures get that never-ending energy supply? Finally rolled back in to home a bit before 10, with everyone saying they were tired, indeed! Teeth brushed, babe latched on, we called Daddy-O to wish him a good-night. Sage managed it, while still latched on! ;) The boys are starting to talk about going back out to California; that they are beginning to feel ready to go. They miss their Papa, and I know he really misses us. We're blessed to have such a rich life; that we love our home, our physical home, our community in the Black Hills; and we have our *home*, each other...and no matter where we are, that's exactly where we are...***Home***.

Tomorrow, we help Dale's Aunt Clara celebrate her Birthday. The boys are super excited to see their cousins from Murdo. Sunday, we'll do church. Maybe I can sneak away for a bit sometime this weekend, to re-charge my batteries, re-fill my cup, so I've got more to give. Although, I'll pat my own-self on the back! I think I'm doing pretty darn well meeting everyone's needs, keeping a calm head and heart in the midst of sometimes crazy explosions or minor meltdowns.

So, Life continues to be Full and Wonderful and Good! Hope you can say the same!


May 17, 2007

Thursday, May 17

While my sweet little babe naps, I thought I'd jump on here quickly and write! It really is fun if I can only make it a priority!

We joined a couple of other homeschooling families today to celebrate Jen's 'slipping away' from her duties at BHHA! I've known Jen, and more specifically, her daughter Megan, since Megan was a precious little 5 year old, and I was teaching Kindergarten at Douglas Schools. She wasn't in my class (darn!), but she was right across the hall, so we smiled at each other in the hallways! :) After several years of being homeschooled, she's decided to move on and begin her freshman year in public school. She'll do great! She's such a beautiful girl, inside and out!

Saylor and Siri hit the skatepark after the homeschool gathering, Saylor in his roller blades and Siri on her rip stick. And of course, Saylor is now on a quest to spend more time with Siri, and her brother Jorgen, very soon! We will!!! :) Cuz it just so happens that that means *I* get to hang out with Melanie (mom to J & S) of the most inspiring people I know! (and an unschooler ;)

Sage fell asleep on the way home, Saylor's now relaxing with some cartoons and Stone is riding his scooter. Looks like a thunderstorm is considering whether or not it will make an appearance, I'm hoping it does. Nothing better than a late afternoon thunderstorm! (Well, I have a long list of "nothing better than's" so....?)

We went to a free concert at the Elk's Theater last night. Tangled Blue, as described by the Rapid City Journal, is a "caffeinated folk duo". Married couple, have traveled over 265,000 miles together in their VW Eurovan. They had a great stage presence, and really beautiful voices. (Stone thought they sounded better when they sang together, rather than alone.) She played the drums, hand drums and other cool percussion instruments, and he played a few different guitars. Upon arriving, and hearing a few of their songs, we (or rather, I) realized they are more a Christian-caffeinated-folk-rock duo. But, the message is universal...You are Love! God is Love! Peace on Earth! And anytime is a good time to listen to live music, FREE live music! :)

The boys lasted about an hour, then we headed home and watched a movie Stone chose at the video store, "Anaconda's". All about these enourmous anaconda's that go around eating people. But he wasn't scared! (or at least, not today when the sun is up, but last night, while trying to get ready for bed, he was stuck to me like glue on paper! funny boy!)

We met some friends at the park yeterday, people I hadn't really seen, let alone hung out with, since Saylor was a wee one! The kids all hit it off great, and it was fun to catch up with their mama's, as well! I think we'll see them again next Wednesday.

Well, I'm off to watch "The Prestige" now! Hope all of you wonderful souls are doing what makes you TICK! :)

May 16, 2007

Today's Art Work

We (Stone, Sage and myself) had a very grand time painting this sheet today!

Introducing... YumYum

... and Quill!

Tuesday, May 16

We really are out here in this big world, even though I never get around to sharing our glorious lives on here as much as I'd like to. Everyone's sound asleep and I wanted to post a few pictures of what's been taking up some of our time lately.

I'm enjoying volunteering at the Breadroot Co-op on Friday mornings, and Mary has been so gracious in offering to let the boys come and play at her house while I do so! Thank goodness for such giving friends! We went to Reptile Gardens last Thursday with Mary and her boys, spent many hours there seeing all the exhibits and watching the snake and crocodile shows (twice!). An employee even stopped by as we were lounging around on the path that leads to the croc show, quite left in the dust by the boys who had booked it over there. He said he just wanted to tell us how cool it was that we were spending so much time there, and that it seems to him most people come in, rush, rush, rush to get through things and on to the next. Oh, not us! He also shared lots of great information on good first reptiles to have as pets: corn snake and bearded dragon. We also had a great conversation about how he came to work there. I was wondering if there were all kinds of brainiac herpetologists and botanists working there. He said that he didn't go to college to earn a degree (he works with reptiles) in working with reptiles, rather, he just started working with reptiles and learned everything he knows by working with reptiles. Ahhh, what a concept!

So, after our long day at the Gardens, we grabbed a quick bite at Burger King and then Haakon invited us to come watch him play soccer. So, we did! After the official game, Haakon's dad, Al, had 6 boys out there running around playing an 'unofficial' game of soccer. It was so fun to watch all the boys just giggling and having so much fun. Well, after that, Saylor wanted to spend the night with Haakon & Henry. Ok, sure! Well, now Stone wants to spend the night, too! (I know at this point that this means a late night trip to retrieve Stone as he still needs his mama at night.) So, Mary jokingly says, "Well, come on Karen and Sage, we do have an extra king-size bed". So, yep, we did! We all had a slumber party with the Anderson's. Did some night jumping on the tramp, played some go-fish, ate some popcorn. Good times...

Now, it's Friday. I'm putting in my 5 hour volunteer shift at the co-op and my mom calls and tells me about two cockatiels that are listed in the paper. (side note: we've spent several hours over the last couple weeks visiting many-a-pet-store looking at birds, parrots in particular, holding lots of different kinds of birds and asking a zillion questions about all of them. So, the kids have been on a bird crazed quest to actually acquire one, or two?! :) Long story short, we met the birds, they fell in love with the boys and the feeling was mutual and we brought them home to live with us. YumYum and Quill are sweet and cuddly and tolerate lots of holding time! Just what we were looking for!

Saturday we went to the Hemp Hoe Down and ended up camping there. I almost slept! No, really, it was one of those nights in a tent where you wake up just as you think you might be dosing off, finally! Uggh. Needless to say, I was exhausted on Mother's Day, which didn't make it any easier to be alone (I mean, without John) on my special day. He's always great at doing something, even if it's cooking me a nice meal, that's my favorite and he knows it! I did make a strawberry shortcake for my mom (and me!) and got to see her a for a bit on Sunday. Sage and I took a nap in the afternoon and we all ate dinner outside, which consisted of pizza and guacamole.

Monday found us back at Reptile Gardens. The day was cool and somewhat drizzly, but that didn't stop us from seeing everything we'd intended on seeing. Sage had been talking about the Komodo Dragon since our last visit, so we saw him right away! It was urgent in his little world! So cute! And he can say it too! Big words for such a little guy! Monday night Dale (John's Dad) spent the night with us, so I made a big pot of hearty chili and some cornbread, and the boys visited with Grandpa and snuggled up while they all watched part of a movie together.

Ok, so if you are still reading this absurdly long marathon post, thanks! Your sweet! I have so much more to say, so many thoughts and feeling to share, but REALLY, this has gotten too long already! Hopefully, I'll do this again soon!

Enjoy the pictures and Embrace the Joy! :)
(***And check out the Flikr badge, just uploaded 102 new photos! ***)

May 9, 2007

Busy, Busy

We've been so busy since we returned home, visiting friends and otherwise finding plenty to do. Last Friday I volunteered at our local food co-op and had a great time. A dear friend watched the boys, and with her 3 boys, had 6 boys to look after! Whew! Sage freaked out about the last 20 minutes, just as I was on my way home. I won't be staying as long next time! But, it was fun to be in a different environment and chatting with people who come and go. I love the feeling of community I get from being there, and from being home in general. A big part of me loves it too much to leave again, but then there's John who's all alone and bumming way out in Sacramento.
We've decided that one way or the other, we'll be back together again by mid June. Whether that means we go there or he comes home, we're not sure yet. It all depends on his work situation, but I'm really pulling for the latter. But, there I go again, forcing things and thinking "i know what's best for me" I guess Fate will take me where she sees fit! :)

After my 6 hour gig at the Breadroot (co-op), we came home and a friend dropped her 3 boys off here so she could get her husband to his surprise 40th b-day party she was throwing for him. So, now I had 6 to look after, and they all had a grand time together. We popped up some popcorn and ate about an entire bag of licorice while we waited for their Grands to come collect them and take them home for bed. Of course, they all thought it'd be cool to spend the night! :) I might need to recruit the other mama if we're to have 6 boys for an overnighter!

And then, on this very same Friday, our good good friends Diana and Hayden rolled in on their way back from Oregon. So, it was a beautiful friend filled day for us all!

We all went to the Cinco de Mayo festival that the Pennington County Democrats were sponsoring on Saturday. It was pouring rain, and after the boys nibbled some authentic Mexican grub, they headed outside where they were soaked to the core. Didn't stop them from requesting a trip to the mall, though! We headed there, browsed around and this and that and nothing, and played a while in the arcade. Sage was heading into his "i'm angry at you, so now I'm going to bite you" stage, so he and I headed for home and Diana brought the other 3 when they were all finished. We spent the evening talking and laughing and sipping wine and eating spaghetti and enjoying our time together.

Sunday morning, we all went to church, then out to a quick lunch and then they had to head back to Sioux Falls. It was fun and we get to do it again when they return out here for the May 27 Amy Steinberg show!

Damn, I love my life!

May 1, 2007

For My Mom!

Because she was giving me *crap* about not posting here lately! So, this one's for you! :)

We had a lovely, long day at the park today, with many friends. Saylor caught a gardener snake and it already making plans to go back to look for more sometime soon. The kids ran and played hard all day! The weather was nice, quite windy, but warm and sunny. And of course, there was food galore. Mary brought some delish rice wraps, always a hit, and everyone else pulled out a contribution or two upon arriving. It's always a feast with The Mother's Collective! We all joked that it's sometimes the only time we really take to *nourish* ourselves, since we're usually busy doing for our kids. So, when we get together, it's like we're feeding each other...stomach & soul. Yep, it's that nice!

After our park day, we went out to Grandma's. Barb had plans to go out to color mom's hair, so mom called and asked us to come out, too. We had dinner together and got to spend time with our most precious little cousin, Emma. She and Sage were born 12 days apart and are such little buddies. It was so great to watch them together and sneak in as many hugs and kisses as I could manage!

On our way back home, John called and chatted with a few of us. Stone fell asleep and needed to be carried in and up to bed while Saylor entertained Sage for a spell with his new laser light. Now, everyone is sleeping, and I should be too! We're meeting some friends at the tennis courts tomorrow for some impromptu tennis playing time. Better get my beauty rest so I'm ready to chase balls!

Much love...