Sunday, September 29, 2013

More Beach Photos

Because my dad takes better pictures than I do, and caught some moments that I didn't...

Sunday, September 22, 2013

Fire Safety Day

Last Friday our local fire station put on a great presentation for the homeschool group we belong to. We started with a few short movies about fire safety. We then toured the station, explored the fire trucks, and were even allowed to spray the fire hose! Afterwards the kids received goody bags and fire helmets and we picnicked and played on the nearby playground. When we got home, we practiced our fire drills several times, which the kids find unbelievable exciting. It was a successful fire safety day! PA homeschool requirement complete!

Friday, September 20, 2013

Big Boy Camping

This post is very past due, but I wanted to document the experience anyway. Back in July, I took just Alexander and Jack camping. It was FABULOUS. It was so wonderful to have the freedom of only two kids, both of whom are big enough to do many things for themselves, or at least be trusted to stay in one place if I ask them to. We were able to really enjoy each other's company.

The campground that we went to had a pool, a trampoline, a playground, and a creek. We arrived early Saturday morning and spent a few hours at the pool. Then we set up the tent and explored the creek and other neat stuff. They were happy just playing in the dirt and wading in the creek. There were only a few tent sites, along with many RV sites, so it was sort of like camping in a neighborhood of RVs, which was very nice because we seemed to be surrounded by mostly older couples. No rowdy groups of partiers!

The kids were very excited to have our campfire, so well before the sun started going down, we got to work. The kids helped unravel some twine that my dad had given us to use as fire starter, and we put in some toilet paper rolls stuffed with dryer lint. The campground provided a small batch of firewood and we started our fire easily. I have to admit that I was proud, especially when our neighbor came over to ask for lighter fluid because he couldn't get their fire started. I had some extra fire starting supplies to share. The kids got to roast hot dogs and we heated some baked beans right in the can. After dinner we played on the playground and trampoline for a while, and then we came back to the campsite to roast marshmallows and heated some fruit with mini chocolate chips near the fire. We told scary stories, of course, and then the kids went to sleep pretty quickly.

It started raining sometime in the night and rained hard. The kids slept right through, but I lay awake listening for thunder in case I should need to wake the boys and escape to the van. Luckily, it was just rain and it lightened up very well in the morning. The kids played in the van while I packed up the site. It was a short trip, but exactly what I needed with my big boys! I can't wait for more adventures!

Lots of pictures:

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Ocean City, New Jersey

We've always enjoyed our beach trips to Ocean City, Maryland, where we used to borrow a friend's condo. Last year, our only "adventure" was to move from Maryland to Pennsylvania, so we did not have the opportunity to go to the beach. This summer we knew we couldn't miss it. We decided to take advantage of our flexible homeschool schedule, and try out Ocean City, New Jersey, during the second week of September when rates are reasonable, crowds are less, and the weather is great! We also continued Jack's birthday celebration at the beach. Justin's parents came to stay at the beach for a few days, too. It was great to see them, spend some time on the beach with them, and play in their hotel's pool. Later in the week, my dad came to stay with us in our beach house, which was also wonderful! The kids had their difficult moments, but as we reminded ourselves, they always have difficult moments regardless of whether we are at the beach or at home. So, we're calling it success. The weather was great. We spent days on the beach digging in the sand and splashing in the waves. The boys were all very brave in the water, which made me rather nervous! We played on the boardwalk, in the pool, and at the playground. We also had some more relaxing time at the beach house. In random order, some pictures of our fun:

Sunday, September 15, 2013

Happy Birthday, Jack!

Jack is six!

For Jack's birthday, I gave all the kids the day off from school. It was the start of a week and a half vacation, during which we also visited the beach. I made Jack a number six pancake, but once he received his birthday presents (which Alexander insisted that I give to him immediately), he was too excited to eat it. This year we gave him a Kirby video game and a green puffle (stuffed animal). He was thrilled. After he played with his new things for a while, we went to Chuck E Cheese for lunch and fun. For dinner he requested KFC. He had a really fun birthday, and we continued to celebrate at the beach.
Jack is an amazing six-year-old. He is beginning to read and is zooming through his math lessons. He has lost his two bottom teeth. He likes Legos, Club Penguin, and playing outside. He is doing great at his swimming lessons and now goes under water for fun, like a pro. He rides his bike with just one training wheel, working his way up to being completely free of them. He just started karate lessons, which is the first class that he is taking with big brother Alexander. His favorite color is green and he loves eating peanut butter and cream cheese bagels. I can always count on Jack for a hug. He's always been my sweet little blondie. Love you, Jack!