Sunday, April 17, 2011

Half-Way (Plus) Through April

We're actually home for a weekend, so I can update this poor neglected blog! We headed North the last two weekends for sugaring, and we had special meetings, too, so it's been plenty busy around here! It's school vacation this week, so I'm not sure if it will be more or less busy-- no school bus to catch, but more arguments to adjudicate!

The sugaring set-up. That truck has been in the family since Alaska days. Evan still technically owns it, but it's been a farm truck for years. (The 4'x4' hole under the driver's feet make me not want to drive it much.) The green tank on the trailer is for collecting sap.

The sugar shack was the happening place to be, even for 10-month olds!

And (slightly) older people.

Orianna thought it was a good place for Barbies...

As did Cheyenne. Barbies are the latest craze. There are quite a few at Grandma's house, left over from Tori and Livie, and now our house somehow keeps getting more. Cheyenne is at the age where she realizes the power of money. Anytime she gets her hands on some, she wants to head to Wal-Mart to get another Barbie!

Handsome dude in his overalls.

Justin pretending to look busy and important.

Justin preying on his sister-in-law's fear of heat and fire. Aack!

The cupola ventilation system. Pretty spiffy engineering!

Aunt Bet, trying a hat on Lincoln. Lincoln got lots of new clothes, courtesy of Gilbert growing!

After meeting Sunday, checking out the river!

Ice floes on the river, and Aunt Ashley fascinating the kids.

'Twas the spot to be!


Little ponytails, bouncing in the breeze!

Gilbert snuggling Ashley.

Lily, Tori and Alex.

The couch, at maximum capacity.

Dad checking out pictures. I didn't want Evan to look at them, as they had pictures of Philip Parker's bee hives, and I don't need Evan getting any encouragement to keep bees! I'm a little less freaky about honey bees these days, but that doesn't mean I want to invite thousands over to live at our house!

Fiona and Caleb. I think Caleb was studying hard-- Calvin and Hobbes, maybe?

Elliott readjusting the piano bench cushion.

Then, home again for a bit. I rearranged the living room-- this is what it looks like, all spiffy clean on a Thursday morning after we had meeting here!

My desk and the blue chair swapped places with the sofa.

That's a sad spot on the wall above my sofa. My collage frame, full of Alaska pictures, has broken again and is awaiting Evan's Fix-It Genius.

Now we can actually get into the last cupboard to the right of the chair. Before, it had furniture in front of it.

I switched lots of stuff around on these shelves. I've been wanting to swap my photo albums and cookbooks around on there since someone unpacked them for me while I was on bedrest when we moved in. And yes, those two enormous tote bags of books are library books. I think we account for at least 30% of our library's circulation statistics.

My early morning friends. Sometimes TOO early, but they're cute.

His smiles are awake, too!

I love waking up to clean counters!

And yummy smells. The crockpot had been on all night, cooking pork for pulled pork sandwiches.

I moved lots of stuff out of the family room, after a couple years of using part of it for storage, and Evan using it as part of his wood-working setup.

While there's still about 15 boxes of office stuff stacked around, I actually set a desk up! I was planning on using it for my projects, in addition to Evan using it for doing estimates and paperwork, but Evan uses it all the time. Someday we'll do it up right, get a real desk and put some shelves up, but at least it gives Evan a place to work and corrals some of the paper clutter.

I liked my new room setup because it was easier to get into my hutch. That was before the kids decided it was a perfect place for their office. Cheyenne hung the map up, and stays very busy in that corner.

Elliott is on a kick of actually wearing his glasses.

Cutest little sous chef!

Rilla, with her eyes veering towards green, thanks to her shirt.

I can't stop myself when I start photographing Rilla's eyes.

The bouquet Elliott brought me. An interesting presentation, but it was a nice harbinger of spring!

Then, back to Vaughans'-- and a Friday night homemade pizza party!

Lots of yummy pizza!

Joanna was visiting! And she and Cody are still sorta speaking, despite the fact she shaved off his mustache while he slept.

My daddy.

An intense game of Apples to Apples. Mary believes sincerely in her point here.

Amy isn't buying it, though.

And Olivia's just weird.

My ruggedly handsome husband.

Cody has a pickup truck camper, which the kids promptly co-opted for a clubhouse. Cody graciously let them all have a sleepover in there one night. He even slept in there to keep them from the bears! Much to my surprise, they all lasted all night out there!

It's lambing season!

Cheyenne trying to get the lamb to come to her.

One lamb wasn't getting any help from its mother, so Owen brought it in to warm it up and clean it off. Joanna played the shepherdess role, with Cheyenne in a supporting capacity.

Lambs are adorable.

Then, special meetings, lots of wonderful visitors, and Cheyenne's school's open house.

We won the beach basket from the PTA raffle! (My camera was on a weird setting, so the light was funky, but I think it makes it look very serious and cool.)

Yeah, then I figured out how to use the camera.

Goofy googles.

I was putting winter clothes away one morning this week, and came downstairs to see Rilla had put herself to sleep.

Maybe the fact that they were listening to "Junie B. Jones and the Stupid Smelly Bus" for the third time helped her fall asleep. (I am not fond of Junie B., but my kids love her!)

After our company left on Tuesday, and I did our mountains of wash on Wednesday, I got all the kids' summer clothes out, put the winter clothes away, put away coats and boots and winter paraphernalia, etc. I have six garbage bags and three boxes to take to Salvation Army, and we still have lots of clothes! I'm glad that job is done, though. In previous years, it's taken me up to a month to get all that taken care of!

Evan, after a normally slow winter, is inundated with work right now. He could clone himself a couple of times and keep three of himself busy! So I'm enjoying this Sunday evening when he's just here with nothing to do. Nothing to do besides hold a fat sleeping baby, that is...


Lisa said...

I got one of those Junie B Jones books at the 2nd hand store- and put it in the garbage after reading part to Breanna! She's aweful! Decided I didn't want my kids thinking or talking that way. Anyway, thanks for posting!

JBCottens said...

I like all your pictures. How do you have the gumption to put up all those pictues? Admirable! Maybe someday I will figure it all out.
Yeah, Junie B seems a little rotten. I haven't introduced Orianna and Lily to her for that reason. But Tori and Livie liked her and they grew up fairly un-rotten. So they must not be too damaging!

Rebekah said...

Ha, ha!! Bees are that much work, honest! :) We read JB, but the girls think she's hilarious and realize it's not the correct way to act or talk (...for the most part!). Actually I read the Christmas one aloud and haven't laughed so incredibly hard at a book in a long time!!!!!!! Even Philip who was trying to grade papers, was laughing along with us. One can not help but read these books aloud LOUDLY. :)

Cecil and Amy said...

What??? The kids stayed out in Cody's "little house" all night? I guess my bet of one hour lost!

Cecil and Amy said...

Ummmm...I have to agree with Rebekah. The Junie B. Christmas book was hilarious. Here I had company from WI for only a few precious days and what was I doing? You guessed it- spending time Reading Junie B. Good thing I can read a first grade book really really fast! I is a gud reader!

Lisa said...

Absolutely love the picture of Elliott's flower bouquet. It made me laugh!