Friday, June 29, 2012

Grateful Henry

"Thank you God, for Mama, Daddy, Willa, the dogs, the chickens, the fish, the butterflies... for life!  And thank you for my matchbox cars.  And milk.  Amen"
                                                                                                      - Henry's dinnertime prayer

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Sept - June photos

I made a family photo book on Shutterfly.  Here it is.  We've been a Snapfish family, but a free book offer came along, and I thought I'd give this a try.  I really liked the options I had.  Following are 2 commercial links:

Click here to create your own Shutterfly photo book.

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

New socks $ < New washing machine $$$

Willa came to me nearly in tears this morning.  "Mom," she whispered, "we need to get a new washing machine."  I gasped, thinking about what could have happened in the basement and the dollars it would cost.  And then I asked her why.

"Because," she sniffled and then started to sob, "it's shrinking all of my socks."

"Oh, sweetie... has it shrunk any of your shirts?  Your dresses?  Your pants?"

-sniff, sniff, sniff- "nooo"

"Do you think that maybe your feet are growing?"


"Do you think you can wear your flip flops for now and we'll go through your sock drawer this week?"

"Okay."  And she skipped off.

Report card

In baseball if a pitcher is throwing a perfect game, you're not supposed to talk about it while the game is still in play.  Instead, you may use code.  For example, "If you happen to be a Tigers fan, you may want to turn the game on.  Justin Verlander is doing quite, quite well tonight."

Pals, if a Masters of Counseling program was baseball, and I were a pitcher, we'd be talking in code.  2 years into it and I'm doing quite, quite well.

Our cohort has one class and then practicum, another class and then internship.  All of that plus a giant, scary national exam and then... then I'll be done.

Time flies when you're learning about theoretical models to best treat an array of clients.

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

8 weeks

When humans are 8 weeks old, they might start to roll over.  Tonight we watched Alice and Hazel enjoy a dust bath.  They've found a bare spot in our "lawn" and have scratched it into a little bathing area.  They lay down,and then roll over, and then fluff their feathers.  Penny hasn't discovered a love of the dust bath yet.  Instead he/she stands over the other two and preens them.  Maybe check in for week 9 will include a video of bath time.

Thursday, June 14, 2012

7 weeks

Hazel's face has turned red this week.  It happens younger in her breed than most others.  She kind of looks like a Mexican wrestling mask.

Above are some mighty happy chickens.  They are eating yogurt.  Chickens love yogurt, and berries, and lettuce, and  -I've only read - chicken (ick).  They got very excited about this outdoor treat.  It took them a while to figure it out, though.  We dipped grass in the yogurt, and they'd devour it off of the grass.  But they didn't think to eat right from the plate until 10 minutes into their feast.  Chickens: entertaining, but not so smart.  They are the Jersey Shore of the animal kingdom.  I have never seen even a minute of Jersey Shore.  Yet, I'm compelled to make that joke.

Surveying the progress of their new home.

The coop is coming along.  It's taking way longer than we estimated.  Everything generally does, as Jim and I are optimistic people.  This project though... well... it's important that every crack is sealed up because our princesses won't do well with winter drafts.  We need to make sure they get plenty of air in hot and cold weather.  It's also important to make sure it's predator proof.  We have racoons, hawks, oppossums, and a Greta we need to protect them from.  Small neighborhood hands, too.  Also, we'd like it to look nice.  While we're all anxious to get chickens out of our basement, it's not ready yet (though it is closer than the progress in this photo).

Penny/Abe really likes to cuddle with Willa and I.  She/he is less friendly with Jim and Henry.

     Henry is fascinated with this process.  He carries his play toolbox around the yard, pounding nails and asking every 10 seconds how he can be helpful.

Saturday, June 09, 2012

2nd to last day photos

Awards assembly: Willa getting her writing award from her teacher and principal.

She did this acrostic of words that reminded her of her teacher and Kindergarten

She wrote this while I was doing something else.  No help, no suggestions.  100% Willa.

Thank you gift for her awesome teacher.  I got this idea from Pinterest.  We filled it up with snacks,  tea/lemonade mix, a fun tiki ice cube tray, some homemade rhubarb-blueberry bread, and a gift card for target (with specifications that it was for something fun and relaxing: a book, camping or gardening stuff, fun socks?  Ok.  Laundry detergent?  No.

A big year

Thursday, June 07, 2012

Proud bragging inside

Um... wasn't it just a few weeks ago that I confessed to crying in the kitchen over peanut butter and jelly as I made Willa's first lunch for Kindergarten?  I thought so.  Yet, tomorrow, I'll make her last one for the school year.  How did that happen?!

This morning there was an awards assembly.  I was so proud of her as she collected awards for reading and math.  When her teacher gave her the Student of the Month award, I teared up a little (is this normal?  All this crying?  I don't think so.).  Each class has a winner every month based on a particular character trait.  Willa won the "Trustworthiness" award in the fall, and the "Caring" award in the winter.  Today's award was for "Responsibility." 

My daughter reads and writes well.  She has a firm grasp on math.  She's also trustworthy, caring and responsible.  I'm so proud of Willa.  I'm chalking this up as a win in the parenting column, too.

Wednesday, June 06, 2012

Six week check in

We've had them in the basement for 6 weeks now.  From fuzzy chicks to feathered out junior chickens... but holy hell, I'm ready for these three to move out.  The dust from their pine bedding has left a layer on the bookshelf above the brooder box.  Putting all 3 in a box, and then walking up the stairs, hoping the whole time that Greta doesn't tear them apart, is too stressful. 
So... we put the first layer of paint on the coop frame yesterday.  This color... oye... that's not what I thought it was going to look like.  It's a good undercoat, anyhow...


A man and his chickens.

A nice roost.
This is truly a family project.

Hey, lookie there!  Hazel's got her own wattles now, too.  I'm ignoring what that could mean.  Apparently this breed gets 'em early.  And look at how Penny is becoming so... handsome?  I really like this bird.  Fingers still crossed.

Sweet Alice.  Still likes chickens more than people, but will lie upside down on Willa's chest.  Also, in the sunlight, her feathers are showing some iridescent green.  Pretty little lady.