Tuesday, February 26, 2008


The pictures below were: Taj and Aria before the birthday party, Sascha and Za sleeping, and Aria's snowman (made it all by herself!) on Sunday.

These are some cards I've been working on lately....
The balloon one and the sparkle flower "friendship" ones were HEAVILY influenced by other cards that I've seen (Like, almost exact copies.)

Nighttime Parenting....

I'm working on getting Sascha and Za to sleep together (and not with ME!). I've been putting them to bed at 8:00 the last few nights--and sleeping in a different room. (The different bedtime also gives me a lull to read to Taj and Aria before their bedtime.)

Sunday night they both slept all night--but were up at 6:00 (!) and no fun all day. We've also put Little Buddha in Tajir's room--and HE was up at 5:00 a.m. yesterday. Last night I got all three to bed at 8:00. All was well until Za woke up SCREAMING at 2:00 a.m. (sigh) So I went in there and lay down with the baby girls for awhile--until they were both back asleep. Then L. B. woke up so I got him a bottle and went back to my solo bed. At least they all slept until 7:00 this morning. I'm so much more civilized and happy when I can get up on my own at 6:00 a.m. and have at least an hour to myself.

The older kids have been SO excited for LB's birthday (his first one is soon.) They've been making him cards and pictures--and his very own private cardboard limo. We have a small party planned--some people are coming over for cake. I worked with him today to try to get him to crawl on his hands and knees (his preferred mode of transportation right now is a VERY FAST army crawl--on his belly.) He's strong enough, but stubborn. I can't believe how much a part of our family he has become in the last few months--I'm saddened to think about him leaving us. (One of the pitfalls of fostering....)

Speaking of fostering, our teenager is doing well. One of her friends is coming for a visit this weekend, and she's looking into getting a GED to avoid wasting her next two years in school. (She's reading the Teenage Liberation Handbook, which I finished and recommeded.) She's a neat kid!

Sunday, February 24, 2008

Good books!!!

We read every night before bed. Last year my mom sent me "Peter Pan in Scarlet", an officially approved / consigned sequel to "Peter Pan". I realized I'd never read the original "Peter Pan", so I ordered it. I tried reading it to the kids last year, but the language was pretty complex, so we shelved it for awhile. However, last month, we pulled out the books and just finished them. WOW! I highly recommend both books. The language is rich and gorgeous--and McCaughrean did a great job with continuity on the sequel, respecting and building on the playful language and texture of the original Barrie book.

Peter Pan in Scarlet by Geraldine McCaughrean and Scott M. Fischer (Paperback - May 6, 2008) (coming out in paperback, soon!)

Peter Pan (100th Anniversary Edition) by J. M. Barrie and Michael Hague (Hardcover - Oct 1, 2003)

I'm also in the middle of a book I've heard a lot about and never read--LOVING it! It really makes me happy that we've decided to homeschool:

The Teenage Liberation Handbook: How to Quit School and Get a Real Life and Education by Grace Llewellyn (Paperback - Sep 1, 1998)

It's snowy and foggy here. Taj and Aria spent the whole day yesterday at a birthday party. Today will be a "down" day--just doing projects and cleaning. (We have quite a few plans next weekend--many of them HERE!)

Friday, February 22, 2008

We got our chairs!

And I love 'em! And this is the tv on top of the dressers. We are not going to Omaha this weekend. Sascha has been running a fever--and I was fighting a bug yesterday. At least Taj and Aria will get to go to the neighbor boy's b-day party tomorrow.
Talked to Jeff a few times in the last few days. He's SO ready to come home!
Za loved her dance class--and we got our teen her learner's permit. Not much news--just getting well and waiting for Jeff's return....

Saturday, February 16, 2008

Aria is 7 now!

She had a good birthday--we went out for dinner (all you can eat Chinese). The present she chose was dance lessons, so she started those Wednesday. I also signed up Zadina for a dance class for her age. And Tajir will start guitar lessons with Jeff when Jeff gets home.
Zadina is still not feeling well--she's come down several mornings and gone back to sleep in the big chair or on the couch. This is Sascha poking her to make sure she's still alive--I think Sascha is paying her back for all the poking Zadina did to her when she was younger!
We're doing well. I think we're all ready for spring, though! We are going to Omaha next week--just for the weekend. Then in a few more weeks, our little Buddha turns "one". Then, a few weeks later, I have a birthday. Then Easter with another Omaha trip--and then only a few more weeks until Jeff is here!! We still have our teenager--she's been a good kid. Very helpful. And I've been able to go grocery shopping ALONE a few times. Heaven!!
What else is going one here? We bought our big tv. The old one had degenerated to the point that the picture was in black and red. So we have a 42" plasma now. However, the 3 ton monolith is still in the middle of the floor, because I am not strong enough to drag it down the stairs. We considered throwing it out the window, but it would break Jeff's car. Maintenance is supposed to come some time next week (the soonest they could commit) and haul it out for me. Until then, Zadina's favorite place to sit is on top of the old television.

I also bought two Purdue dressers the other day from "Furniture warehouse" here in Manhattan. I was happy to be supporting an American company--plus they are really well-made and the price was right. And--I ordered my chairs for my dining room. Red leather--ten of 'em! They should be in next week.

It's been a starnge month for weather--some days we've played outside in t-shirts--some days it's 0 degrees with wind chill. We've been taking turns with a flu bug. I got it first--fever and chills and total sinus blockage. All the kids have gotten it to some degree--only Aria has escaped so far. I think this is the first time I've been sick for more than a day since I became a mom. I'm still hacking and coughing, but at least I'm sleeping again and I feel mostly human.

Tajir is a neat kid. He has a twisted sense of humor and a strong sense of fairness. He's not always easy to live with, but he is the most even-tempered of my birth children.

Zadina is getting more verbal--and has a great sense of timing for jokes. She came to dinner naked last night and I asked her to put on some panties. She said, "I'm mad at my panties." What do you say to something like that? So she ate dinner naked.

Sascha is so much fun! I'm so looking forward to Jeff getting home so he can help me appreciate her. She and our little Buddha play so well together!

Jeff has been calling me every few days--he is SO eager to come home. (And we are SO eager to have him here!!!)

I keep busy--still steal a few minutes to read here and there--and get up early or stay up late so I can do my rubber stamping. Mostly I just do "Mom" stuff--that keeps me pretty busy--3 meals a day with clean-up, laundry, general housework, diapers, cuddles--I turn around and another day, another week, another month has flown by. But I'm probably happier than I've ever been. I feel useful and needed.
Speaking of which, it's dinner time and I need to get that on the table!