Wednesday, March 1, 2017

The Robot Has Hairy Armpits

We took a couple days at the end of January to venture down to Kansas City with the kiddos. 

The Great Wolf Lodge was our home for a couple nights. It was the perfect retreat for us. The kids loved it, every minute of it! 

The Lodge gives all of the kids these wolf ears. Trevin wore them all weekend. 

It was Myla's first time swimming. She giggled and splashed and didn't fuss once in the many hours we spent at the pool. 

Trevin went nonstop at the waterpark. The tube slides, splash gym, hot tubs, kiddie pool, lazy river, water hoops, and lily pads kept us pretty busy. 

We all shared a room at the Lodge. It went well for the most part. Since we were in the same room, James and I went to bed at 8:00 with the kids. That made for a long night of not sleeping. Myla woke up about 12 times the first night. But she smiled all day long, so I won't complain too much. 

Kansas City has a lot to offer. We were able to do some really fun things. There was a Fuddrucker's close to the lodge and we ended each night with a strawberry shake. Seriously, if you haven't had a Fuddrucker's strawberry shake, you're missing out. 

You need to take your kids to the T-Rex Cafe. It's so over-the-top and your kid's jaw will drop when they walk in. When we left, we were still trying to convince Trevin that the moving dinosaurs weren't real. 

We had a great weekend and look forward to going back again. 

Since we've returned, we've had all sorts of illness go through this place. Trevin started with a cold, and the rest of us quickly picked it up. It hung on for 2 weeks and then turned into an ear infection for James and Myla. Then Trevin got the flu. I think we're all finally healthy for the first time in a month. Just in time for winter to realize it's winter and give us a snow storm instead of the 70* days we've had. 

Celebrating Ashton's 21st Birthday! 
Ashton's birthday is the 1st of February and mine is the 11th. When I was a kid, that was the longest 10 days each year, waiting for my birthday after celebrating hers. I must be grown up now, because those 10 days flew by this year. 

We were down with colds, but decided to keep our reservations at the Odyssey in Hastings. Trevin got a tour of the kitchen from the owner. James spotted a bag of cough drops on the counter and asked our waitress for one. We've decided that, in the winter, they should hand out cough drops instead of mints. 

I'm thankful for the 24 years I've had. Year 23 will be one that I'll never forget. 


+9 months old! How? I don't know what happened. I've forgotten how much fun it is to have a baby in the house. I don't want this stage to ever end. 

+She's started doing all sorts of new tricks: clapping, waving, giving kisses, clucking with her tongue and copying. 

+I've tried taking her to the nursery at church a few times. It hasn't ended well. She cries, and cries, and cries, and then she cries. I think she's more attached than Trevin was. Hopefully this phase will be short-lived, but I'm not holding my breath. 

[Myla & Maverick. They're 5 months apart and friends for life.]

+She's had a rough couple of months. Since she started teething in December, it seems like it's been non-stop discomfort since then. She popped her second tooth this month. She battled a cold, like the rest of us, but then had an ear infection as a result. She's finally healthy and not teething and my baby is back to her happy self.  

+Her mobility has taken off. She crawls, bear crawls, pulls up, walks around furniture, loves to play with the dishwasher, and gets into everything. 

+People continually make comments about her bows. They're impressed that she leaves them in. (The trick is starting it as soon as they're born, then they just think it's part of life. It doesn't phase them.) She has started to play with them a little bit, but generally she forgets it's there after a few seconds. A couple weeks ago, during Sunday School, Myla grabbed her bow and pulled it as far as her arm would go. Then she let go. It snapped her in the face and made a loud smack. Everyone around us started laughing. She didn't seem to know what to think. She didn't cry, but looked a little surprised at what happened. She's learning cause and effect pretty quickly. 


+He's developed a love for card games. War is his favorite. He loves it so much that he's started referring to A's as aces in every context. 

February was so good to us! Flying kites in 70* weather in the middle of winter? Ok. 

+The long winter months have started to turn him into a screen junkie. He doesn't get to watch stuff often, maybe a couple time a week. But he is fully obsessed. He's been known to say, "school is playing video games, too, Mom." He loves Mario and asks at least a dozen times a day if he can play. When he's told to stop asking he says, "I know you don't want me to ask to play Mario, but can we at least talk about it?" We desperately need spring to come to zap this kid out of the virtual world. 

+He refers to his memory, dreams, and imagination as his "tv eyes". We'll be talking about something that we did a couple months ago and he'll say, "I can't remember, let me look it up on my tv eyes." Or he'll wake up in the morning and tell me all about what was playing on his tv eyes while he slept. 

Trevin drew that picture during church one Sunday. It's a robot. He claims that's not armpit hair, but it definitely is. I'm just hoping that I wasn't the inspiration for this... 

+Ever since we found out we were pregnant with Trevin, we've had a tough debate about schooling. James was homeschooled all the way through and I was in public school K-12. We went back and forth for years and years. Then we stopped talking about it, because we were getting no where. And then last year we realized that we needed to reopen the conversation. Trevin will start Kindergarten in the Fall; we knew our time was running out to figure out a plan. We visited a homeschool group, we talked ins and outs of public, considered two private schools (both at least a 30 min drive one way); but nothing seemed to fit us. Nothing felt quite right. Each choice had a huge negative attached to it; something we felt couldn't be reckoned with. And then someone suggested Hampton Lutheran. We knew about the small private K-6 school, but it was never really on our radar. Suddenly more and more people started suggesting it, and they raved about it. They adored the school, the people, the kids. We decided to give it a shot and set up a visit. I'm not going to lie, we had a lot riding on this visit. I felt the pressure. This was kind of our last resort. If this didn't work, we were back to square-one. We spent the entire morning sitting in and experiencing what school looks like at Hampton Lutheran. They have Chapel every Wednesday morning, so we were able to take part in that. There was a deep sense of community and family focus; that was obvious from the start. Sixth-graders taking Kindergarteners under their wing, prayer partners for each of the students, celebrations and exchange of gifts between mentors and students, and the list went on... The school has such a quaint and humble feel. It was so refreshing to us. It didn't have all the bells and whistles, but it did have one thing... Jesus. They're cultivating an incredible environment for these students and we left the day with so much clarity. It didn't take long for us to know this was exactly where God was calling us. Trevin loved the school and was sad when we had to leave. In the middle of the morning he came running up to me and whispered in my ear, "Mom, can we do school here every time?" He felt safe. He felt joy. He felt loved. I was teary-eyed a lot of that morning, realizing that would be the place where my son would grow up. Next week, we'll have Kindergarten Round-Up. My heart skips just typing that. Our lives will be so different once Trevin's in school. I hate to say good-bye to this chapter, because it has been so so good. I look forward to watching him thrive in the classroom, make new friends, and love Jesus more and more each day. Growing up is good but no one ever said it was easy. 

Wow, I've got to move on, because there seems to be water dripping off my face. Weird. 

Many of you will know that my husband is pretty incredible. His brain works in ways I didn't think was possible. He designs and builds flamers. (A flamer is used for organic weed control. You literally run fire over your crops, thus killing the weeds and the crop grows back. It's amazing and really cool.) He's sold many flamers over the years, always tweaking his design and making them more efficiently. But recently he's been contacted by farmers that we don't know personally. This made us concerned about liability issues in case of a malfunction or improper use. So Thermal Edge Ag LLC was born. (Shout out to his dad for the name. Our best choices were James' Flames, Ready Flame Fire, and Blame the Flame... All ideas from his buddies... So yeah, we were glad Paul had an idea.) He's started to hire out some of the production and painting, so that's saved him loads of time. We're so excited for this opportunity and look forward to growing TEA LLC. (James rolls his eyes when I call it that.) Proud of his hard work and determination. If any of you find yourself in need of a 8, 12, 16-row flamer... I know a guy. (Ladies, all of your men want one for Christmas, I just know it. It's like a flame-throwing trailer. There's not much cooler than that.)

We were able to make a quick trip to Vermillion, SD to visit Ashton and JT's house. JT has been living there for about a year and Ashton has had her hand in a lot of the remodeling. They've done a great job and James was able to help them finish up trim in their basement. It had snowed, so the kids and I made a snowman while the rest of them worked. Turns out, Myla hates SD snowmen. We're kicking off wedding festivities with a bridal shower this weekend for Ashton. It will be a crazy next couple of months preparing for the wedding, also celebrating Trevin's 5th bday, Myla's 1st bday and my dad's 60th! Hold on folks, it's going to get crazy. 

We're really settling into life with 2 kids. Myla seems to fit seamlessly into our crew. We've found that they are never happy at the same time. Just a lot of crying and screaming and whining and sickness. We've found this to be the one truth of parenting multiple children... "If it's not one, it's both." 

 Starting new ventures, growing on the farm...


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