Friday, March 20, 2020

One Week Down...

Hard to believe it has been a week since Friday the 13th.  The day things got real...and it was announced that the schools were closing.  I mean, we had known it COULD happen, but I don't think anyone could really wrap their heads around the reality of it.  That is what we have all been doing day -by-day, hour-by-hour....trying to wrap our heads around something that is completely foreign and new to the modern world.  So far no success in wrapping here...

That said, we keeping completely occupied and busy with 4 kids at home.  We feel lucky they are still young enough where they don't completely HATE being stuck at home with us and each other.  At least not yet...ask Chloe again next week.  In fact, this is a DREAM for Ella.  She loves nothing more than to be at home all day long.  She is the biggest homebody I've ever met.  She's happier than ever right now in her innocent little 7 year old world.  We are working hard to keep the kids away from too much worry or stress about the situation.  

We started right out with keeping up on a school schedule to the best of our ability.  Myke even brought out the flag for the morning Pledge of Allegiance...and has a school bell sound play on the Home Pod right at 8:30a.m.  It's pretty funny.  By mid-week he had even printed out "tardy" slips for kids who weren't here when the bell rings.  LOL.

We've had a lot of rain lately...which seems to add to the doom & gloom mood of the current pandemic-ridden society we are living in.  The silver lining is that rain in San Diego often means snow in our nearby mountains so Wednesday was a field trip to Mount Laguna!  We left at 8:30am which would usually mean terrible rush hour traffic...but we zipped right down the highway and then headed west.  It was just over an hour's drive and didn't disappoint.  Snow play at it's finest ...though my boys both were more than content to stay in the car (what's wrong with these kids?!) and draw pictures and laugh together.  The girls were the one's out playing in the snow.  Go figure.  

Before the plow came through..a bit slippery!

So, yup, we are just keeping busy with Myke working (luckily, can work from home) and me putting my M.A. in Education (K-12) to work finally. I was just starting to get my paperwork back in order to do occasional subbing in the district and here I am now "working full time" but for no pay!  Oh well, so far I love my new "class" and haven't needed to expel anyone.  We will see what next week holds! 

Hope everyone reading this is doing okay, staying home, staying safe & healthy, and finding ways to keep in positive spirits as we navigate this new (hopefully-very-temporary) lifestyle together.  


(No time to proof read or edit...Ella has been waiting over 30 minutes for me to play Candyland so I need to run! Excuse any typos/poor grammar)

A few more from this week: 
Pancake batter for St. Patty's (food dye central!!)

rainbow stacks

brotherly cuddles
(always touching eachother/bothering/wrestling/hugging)

Oh! I almost forgot to mention that my brother is here in San Diego!
Long story...but he's currently self-quarentining in my in-law's condo
in Pacific Beach (they are on the east coast) after traveling to the U.S. from Brazil.  He arrived Monday.  We stopped by to say hello from a distance.  
Welcome to the sh*t-show that is the U.S. right now, Uncle Hale! 

Saturday, March 14, 2020

Coronavirus Day 1

Well, we don't (hopefully) HAVE coronavirus but we, like the rest of the country and a lot of the world, are definitely affected.  Every day is new news and big changes.  Yesterday we found out that schools are closed until April 14th, minimum.  I found out around 10am Friday and then spent my last 2 1/2 hours (they get out at 12:45pm on Fridays) running to a few stores for some extra stocking up.  Trying to imagine a minimum of 4 weeks in the house together...needed lunch items, snacks, etc. On top of this, Ella wasn't feeling great so she stayed home on the couch all day (see above photo).  
I picked the kids up from school and thus begins our new reality for the next month.  

Day One (Saturday).  Not keeping up a strict structure or schedule since it's the weekend.  I'm still thinking of/planning/trying not to panic with how the week days will run with home-schooling 4 kids.  Luckily, their teachers must have been expecting this and sent a lot of work/books/school iPads home with them so they have assignments to complete.  Today we moved around the girls' rooms.  Chloë, who has had the same twin trundle bed since she moved out of her crib, has decided she wants a bigger bed.  Her room isn't huge so we are "trying" a queen size bed by using our guest room mattress in her room.  It actually fit great and we really liked how it looks.  Ella, as the little sister, got her hand-me-down bed and now has the twin trundle.  I think both girls are pleased with their new set-ups.

Chloë's Tween Room 

Ella's "new" bed

Basketball Hoop

We also splurged today on a basketball hoop.  We had made plans with our neighbors/friends who live in the cul-de-sac by us to go in a hoop together and keep it by their house since there is less traffic.  Our street isn't SUPER busy, but it's not a cul-de-sac so we are wary of putting a hoop in the street (and our driveway is too slanted).  Our friends have much younger kids (toddler age) so they won't get much use out of the hoop just yet, but wanted it anyways as they love having all the neighborhood kids around playing by them.  All of that said, I'm thinking we will leave it by our house for just now--there has been almost zero traffic today and, with the kids home all month, I think it will be perfect to just have it out front for easy access.  We'll see how that goes.  

I'm hoping these school closures and less large group events/activities will help to flatten the curve and help this whole thing to blow over.  I know that it won't be that easy...but I'm definitely hoping that if we all do our part we can eventually get back to some form of normalcy in our lives.  I have a strong feeling that it will get a lot worse before it gets better...but time will tell.  Until then, making the most of this unexpected time with my kids and feeling blessed that Myke already works from home and that, while it may not be convenient, we can helpfully do this home-stay without too much discomfort.  It's a scary time, folks.....

Wednesday, January 22, 2020

2020 New Year!

Weekend Morning Snuggles
Glad we have king-size bed!

Oh yah, I have a blog.  Once upon a time I had a blog that I wrote in.  Then life got busy, as in SUPER busy and I can barely keep my head from spinning 90% of the time.  Would I change it for the world?  Well, actually, yes, I would change it a bit...I'd like things to slow down just a maybe I can catch up a little?  I'm pretty sure I'm far from alone in this feeling.

That said, we didn't exactly accidentally stumble onto our chaotic life schedule.  It's busy when kids are little and have so many NEEDS...and it's now a different kind of busy that they all have so many INTERESTS....or, for one in particular, not ENOUGH interests so you have to make him try things (no names mentioned :)).  

All going well here.  We had a busy and super fun holiday season hosting a total of 14 (including ourselves) for Christmas Eve dinner, Christmas morning and then again for Christmas Day dinner.  We had houseguests for nearly a month (but that also meant we had full time clothes folder and kitchen & dishes cleaner...THANKS Mom & Dad!) and had a lot of celebrating during that time.  Still trying to fit back into my jeans....

Age 8 1/2.  Third grade. Plays basketball. 

 Age 8 1/2.  Third grade.  Staring a Parkour class at the YMCA this week.
Got braces this past summer.  

Age 6 (almost 7).  First Grade. Does gymnastics & soccer.
As tall as her brothers and has a bigger shoe size than them.

Chloë (pictured with Uncle Hale)
Age 10 (almost 11). In 5th grade in a 5/6 combo class.
Plays basketball on two different leagues currently with games both Saturdays & Sundays.
10 going on 16. 

Age 12 (almost 13).  Loves to nap. 
Loves to go on walks to sniff every 2 feet.
Still the best dog ever.

Age 40 (almost 41...but don't remind him).
Works for Apple.  Likes black tea.
Taking a break from softball due to a knee injury.

Here's us spiffed up for the family photo.

Merry Belated Christmas!

Wednesday, June 12, 2019

One Week Until Summer Break

One week, well one week and two days, that is.  School days.  We are honing in on the END here.  The end of the first year of having all 4 at the same school, on the same schedule.  I didn't write once, I noticed.  Officially have fallen out of the habit.  I don't know where the year went.  I did spend a healthy chunk of the time the kids were in school taking care of ME.  For the first time in 10 years where I have really OWNED my time on a regular basis with all in school with one pick-up & drop-off.  I don't feel guilty about it at all.  I had my hair done professionally a couple times over the year---something I used to only do with a box at home in my bathroom (which is fine, too, but just ended up really damaging my hair overtime).  I exercised.  I tried to make it a habit of cardio and/or running 3-5x per week, I volunteered in the classrooms.  I attempted to evenly split my time between all 4 kids' classes to keep it fair, but I think I spent the most time in Ella's kinder class, as they are only kinders once...and I just LOVE Maestra Castillo (all 4 of my kids had her for kindergarten and she is amazing & loving & patient & all of those things you want your child's first experience with an elementary school teacher to be about).  I was Room Parent to none of the classes and that was a great decision.  I helped on my own terms.  Some weeks I wasn't in the classrooms at all, others I was in one class or another every single day.  I didn't finish a bunch of books in my free time or watch any tv shows.  Both of those are just things I don't do in the day time, for whatever reason.  I just can't.  Maybe I should have gone to a movie...or gone to lunch with friends more often than I did...but overall no regrets.  My main job is organizing the constantly changing and on-the-go schedule of a family of 6.  The Fall consisted of 4 days of soccer practices (and that was just for Owen & Chloë) and 2 games every Saturday.  That on top of two afternoons of Spanish tutoring per week. So that semester just zipped by.  The Spring was a bit calmer, which was nice.  I am trying to make sure we have more afternoons with NO plans, where the kids can just PLAY and be KIDS and have a chance to get BORED.  That's also my goal for the summer break.  However, I'm my own biggest obstacle for that I either can't stop planning or can't say no to things...and I already am finding myself filling up so much of the calendar all the way through July...that there are almost no free weekends available for down time.  Myke won't be happy about this ;P

Tuesday, September 11, 2018

Back To School!

My sweetie-pies are off to school!  Well, we are on week FOUR of school already (started August 20th) and this is the first day I feel like I'm relaxed and taking the time to update the blog.  Don't get me wrong, I've obviously had a lot more time to get things done now that ALL FOUR are in school...but every day has been pretty filled with to-do's and catching up from having the kids home all summer. I've had appointments for me, appointments for my car, need to make appointment for my dog, etc.  I've also been trying to get in more exercise and making my health a priority each morning when I'm able to.  That's what keeps me sane! 

My baby girl, Ella, started's a full-day schedule and she's at the same school as the older 3...finally!!  So everyone is on the same schedule. One drop-off and one pick-up.  They start at 8am.  I have to head to pick them up at 1:45pm so the days can go pretty fast if I'm not careful...and then we begin our insane afternoons that go from dismissal until 8:30pm when they are getting in bed.  It's all worth it though--having the days to get things in order...and I'm finding time to BREATHE.  I've been around small children constantly for 9.5 years!!  So many needs and constant putting out fires, wiping butts, and laundry....ok, the laundry will never stop (it's INSANE, people!) but I'm not wiping any more butts! CHEERS to that!!  They are much more self-sufficient now, which is great...but, at the same time, their busy sports and after-school activities schedule is a bit nuts.  This coming Thursday I calculated that I have to drive across town back and forth SIX TIMES to get them from school, Chloe to acting class, Owen to soccer, back to Chloe to pick her up from acting class, back to Owen to pick him up from soccer and then to the boys first Cub Scouts meeting...which all 4 kids will have to attend since Myke is out of town this week for work.  So that's a little crazy.  Good thing I'll be driving the electric car and saving on gas $.

cool backpack!

Tuesday, June 26, 2018

She's Standing!

We haven't heard much from camp, as expected!  No calls allowed.  Basically not contact with your camper besides sending mail.  The camp does have a website where they post photos daily of the kids and their activities.  We found one of Chloë last night.  Missing her but so glad she's having this experience!

Sunday, June 24, 2018

Summer Time is Here!

Saying goodbye to these awesome teachers!
Last Day of School!

Everything is bittersweet right now--the end of the school year--leaving some awesome teachers and the fact that I now have a FOURTH GRADER and two SECOND GRADERS and a KINDERGARTENER?!  We are so ready for the summer and sunshine, beach and pool and just a break from the school routines, homework routines,  and packing so many lunches.  

Today is a bit emotional.  In just about 30 minutes from now we are going to hop in the car (all 6 of us) and drive Chloë to a beach nearly an hour south where she will spend the week at YMCA's Camp Surf.  I never thought I'd be sending her to an sleep-away camp at age 9...but one of her best friends asked if she would do it with her...and if she is going to do it with anyone, this girl is the one to do it with.  Chloë and Avery have been friends since kindergarten.  They actually met at the playdates that were held the summer BEFORE kindergarten for incoming kiddos. I know they'll have an AMAZING time...and the fact that she spent 2 nights away at a weekend Girl Scout camp just a couple months ago probably helped me to accept this a little more...and overall be prepared...but I'm still emotional right now.  The GOOD thing is she is very independent and is excited about the camp. So that definitely helps!  

I'll share more after!

Breakfast today- we scootered/biked/walked to Einstein Bagels.

We kicked off the summer with an outdoor movie night in our front driveway on Friday night with neighbors and friends.  

Start of Summer Party Friday afternoon at Chloe's classmate's home 

Boys' final soccer game Saturday morning 
(they were crushed...lost every game this season besides 1 tie game....but they had fun doing it!)