Tuesday, May 27, 2014

no more nursing

Ezra quit nursing about a month and a half ago, around the beginning or middle of April when he was ten and a half months old. I wish I had written down the date.

 He was my best nursing baby. But once he finally got the hang of solid foods, he started slacking off in the nursing department. That boy just wanted to eat, the more the better. My supply went down and down until I worried he was dehydrated based on my pitiful diapers. So I started supplementing out of the two grocery bags full of pumped milk in our freezer - I could force him to take a bottle, but not to nurse. (After my babies don't need the late night feeding at 10pm, I let them sleep and pump instead. So I'd been pumping since he was four or five months old!)

But on that day in April he just up and quit, preferring the bottle. The little punk. So I began pumping in the morning and at night to try to avoid formula, for the health benefits of breastmilk and because free is a whole lot cheaper. Pumping twice a day was getting old quick. I only did it for about a month. 

On Monday May 12th Terry and I had rented a Redbox movie (47 Ronin - meh). I was pumping near the end of it since it was getting late. Terry remarked how it would be nice when I could quit pumping entirely and be done. I agreed and said how I'd only go another couple of weeks so I'd have enough milk to last. That, plus, I was sort of hanging on to the whole idea. Even though Ezra was done, at least I could still pump. 

Well wouldn't you know that the very next morning, after I had gotten up early as usual to have time to pump and gotten all ready, my pump would not start!
 My first thought was that I guess this means I had to be done. Perhaps God had been getting me ready the night before. Then I remembered that we had an adaptable plug that perhaps would work. I searched and searched, found it and plugged it in. Nope, it wouldn't work. So I had to admit that I was done. I sent out a commiserating text to some friends asking them to rejoice and weep with me. Ha! :(

So it turned out that I did not have enough frozen milk to get us by until Ezra turned one. Thankfully a friend gave me a can of formula she received for free. Then we bought another one for $5 off.

On May 20th, my milk ran out. 

And we took pictures to commemorate the night. How silly. But I'm sad he's so big! And I just wanted to be able to remember the details about my last baby growing up. Sniff sniff.
The last bottle of real milk.

Ezra in the grass

The weekend before last Terry was out back watering his new grass under the apple tree. Ezra was getting a little whiny but I had pizza to make. So I plopped him down in the grass with Samuel and Terry. And this is what he did. 
 Silly boy didn't want to crawl on his knees so he kept them off the grass and put his butt in the air! He kept "crawling" around like that until he got used to it after a few minutes.

Cute brothers.

Ezra was taking notes from Samuel on how to climb fences.

Ezra outgrows his car seat

Ezra is almost one year old folks. May 31st is only days away.

 I'm always cognizant of the fact that the first year goes very quickly, but still it surprises me. Every day I look at him and pick him up and wonder how he can be so big. He's huge.

He should still be this big.

But he's this big. For goodness sakes!!!

Last weekend I cleaned out our van and all the cars eats and switched them around. Noah is big enough not to be in a booster. Evie is in a backless booster. I bought Samuel a backless booster since it was cheaper but turns out it was too big. So I added Evie's old back to it (shhhh, it doesn't really have pink flowers on it..). And Ezra got moved up to Samuel's old car seat facing forward. So sad.
On our way to church the weekend before last.

And for fun, here are the posts I have about my kids switching car seats: 
And I'm sad I don't have a post about Samuel.

first mow 2014

Noah likes to take pictures while Terry mows for some reason. Thankfully this time (a couple weeks ago) he didn't take hundreds of photos and there were a few fun ones. He loves it when his photos make the blog :)

Here's freshly home groomed Snap dog. 

 On this day Terry was bummed he couldn't weed whack. His weed eater was broken on so many levels. But when he was at the dump a few days later, he found the same weed eater as ours for like $2.39 and was able to fix it up!

Samuel was pretty psyched about the mowing I guess. Pay no attention to the Christmas Star Wars snow flakes still hanging in my window... 

This was my facebook cover photo for a couple weeks. Pretty good for a nine year old! 

Our poor tree. We have another one just like this as a result of Atlas. :( 

Goosey girl. 

Thursday, May 22, 2014

last day of school - 2014

It's been one week since we finished school. It's been lovely being done though I feel lazy now!

What a good year it's been! Having Evie doing Kindergarten and Noah doing 2nd/3rd grade was a change for me, as was having another baby! But we managed to get most of all of our work done during Ezra's morning nap. Most of the time. Some times it could get dicey. I must say that it'll be nice to have a little bit more freedom as the kids grow. I think a lot of people forget what it's like to have a napping baby. If I want to get anything done (and I kind of have to since I'm responsible for schooling our children!), then I need to have structure. Structure means I cannot run us around all over town if I want to get anything done. If I did that, there would be no normal nap time and it would be a nightmare. So yeah, it'll be nice as the kids get older and we can get out and about more. Freedom!!!

But anyway, we had a good year doing Classical Education for the first time. We are definitely staying with it. We'll be starting on Latin this summer...eventually.

Here's the last day of school. 

Here's the first day of school. And somehow Evie is wearing the exact same clothes.

Some silliness as Noah finishes his math.

I thought I'd throw a photo in of me sitting at my normal spot at the school table since I'm the one always taking pictures of them! That and I really liked Samuel's silly face which I wasn't paying attention to at all while I checked Noah's math.

More sillies.

About half way through the year I texted a photo to my family to show how many pages of "narration" Noah had completed. It's very impressive at the end of the year!

Narration is just summarizing the story he read. Quite a stack!

How our school room has changed! This is how we started out the year when the dungeon wasn't even completed yet and the school room was where Noah and Samuel's new room is now. Look, you can see that stupid wet bar in the corner!

And here are the kids sitting in the same place on the last day of school. We have accomplished so much this year! Good job us :)


Terry and I have been trying to diversify our evenings together. Ah, it's just so wonderfully relaxing when the kids go to bed :) We tried playing Rummy the first night and it was a little boring, though it did remind me of my Gramma. Terry suggested we play Cribbage. I did not know how though and somehow loathe learning new games. But the last time we were at the ranch, Terry's mom taught us how to play. It's good for me. And it's good for my brain to have to add numbers. So after we'd played a few nights, Terry taught the kids. If it's good for me, it's even better for them. And doesn't Samuel look like he's been naughty and abandoned outside? Haha.

Monday, May 19, 2014

Ezra's nicknames

I've been wanting to record Ezra's nicknames for ages and am finally getting to it. After a quick blog search I realized that around this exact same age with Samuel I wrote a post about Samuel's nick names. Mostly now a days Samuel is called Somuel with a short "o." Evie came up with that when he was little and it didn't make it into the above post. 

And again, Evie was the one to give Ezra his most often used nickname: Doob. Dooba. Or Dooba Doo. Even Samuel calls him that (a couple days ago I caught Samuel helping Ezra down the stairs and saying "Doob, doob." it was so cute.). Anyway, the nickname is from a song in Star Wars, Return of the Jedi. It's what the Ewoks are singing as they are preparing to sacrifice Han, Chewie and Luke in honor of C3P0. We often sing to him "Dooba Dooba Dooba. Ezra is a Dooba. Doo-ba, doo, badoo, badoo." Noah and Evie would sing that to him in the car if he was getting cranky, louder and more silly the more upset he was. I found the exact clip on youtube!

So perhaps Ezra ought to be an Ewok on the back of my van like Samuel... For now he is Yoda because he's quiet(er), has less hair and seems wise...so far.

The next most frequent nickname came from my baby talk, "Ezwah." I call him that all the time. Also, when I get him up from bed, I always call him Oompa Loompa.

He's also Ez and occasionally Ezzy. Or Little Ez and Da Ez. Terry likes to call him Chubba Lubba since he's our chubbiest baby. And I guess that's it! He's mostly a Doob though, especially to the kids.

Ezra and Snap

Ezra is a very big boy now a days (he turns ONE is less than two weeks now!!). He's not walking or even cruising all that much, but he will let go of support to stand and balance. One of his favorite support structures is Snap dog. 

I think it's funny how all the kids very been fascinated by Snap's little tail. The poor dog. He handles it so well. He is begging to go outside by standing there though. He's trapped.

"Please can I go outside now?" Ezra thinks that tail would do nicely to pull himself up with...

 And so he did. And then started playing with Snap's collar. He's such a good dog.

early mother's day

Two weekends ago we went out to the ranch to hang out, do some work and eat lunch together in lieu of Mother's Day since Alice would have to work that Sunday...

Terry took the older kids out to a field to pick up rocks. They were at it for over an hour and did very well with the exception of some Samuel shenanigans. Surprise surprise, the little stinker :)

I stayed inside with Alice, Shari and the babies to make lunch. Doesn't Jerry look quite pleased about his lap full of three year olds?

When we got home for the little boys to nap, Terry whisked the older two away for some secret Mother's Day outing which took more than a couple hours. I was seriously wondering what in the world they were doing! Terry printed out this photo for me on Sunday though since their secret gift wouldn't be ready (cured) until the following Friday. They had went to Pottery to Paint and painted me my own "Mom's Mocha Mug." What a good idea!

umbrella sharing

What a nice sister to share her umbrella! You can tell that Samuel is trying very hard to stay under it. 

2014 awana awards

This years Awana Awards on May 7th was pretty straight forward... Except for when Ezra knocked over and broke a heavy wooden offering box and scared the bajeezes out of everyone there, especially me. It sounded like a gun went off. And Pastor Dave was right behind me when it happened. Oofdah. Guess Ezra will be taking over Samuel's title of Destroyer Baby.

Anyway, here's the best photo I had of Evie's Sparkies group. Unfortunately, she's no where to be seen. I have no idea where she went! She did fantastic this year though. Her Awana leader told me how Evie is always so excited to say her verse and is so cheerful. That's Evie. Full of life and light and gooseyness (I'm making up lots of words for this post).

And here's Noah in his Truth and Training group. He's on the second step with no one in front of him. He also did very well this year, completing his book and all. He is one amazing memorizer!

Monday, May 12, 2014

$10 coffee table refinish

Last fall, before my brother made us a school table, I was browsing craigslist and online garage sales to find something to replace the padded coffee table we had been using. Having found a couple items on facebook, I drove out north of town to a woman's house. The table I was primarily interested in was no good, but I really liked this $10 coffee table! Not as it was of course with it's poor, stained, red top finish and ugly forest green legs, but it was a solid piece of wood and I had a vision for it.

I have a little experience finishing wood - our armoire, dining room table and chairs, and the school table. I was about to say this was my first time refinishing something but I realized that wasn't true. I've also done a dresser, bookshelf and end table. I couldn't have done this project, which is superior to the others, without borrowing my brother's rotary sander. It took me a solid two hours during one friday's nap time to get the finish off the top and to degloss and sand the legs.

Look at that pretty butcher block top!

I spray painted primer over the green first and then finished it with off white. I bumped the paint on the drawer while it was still wet and didn't notice until it was dry. So I had to fix that. Otherwise it turned out really smooth and even.

While researching tables for Nathan and I to make from Ana White's site, I ran across this vintage gray/brown stain on pine and loved it. 

I tried to imitate it for the school table which didn't work so well. So this time I went out and bought the exact same Minwax stains she used (only $3.45 a pop at Menards) - Weathered Oak and Special Walnut. Here is the top with the Weathered Oak down. It didn't end up turning out like hers, perhaps because this wasn't pine (not sure what it is, but it's pretty hard) but I like how it turned out regardless.

Next I put two coats of Special Walnut and four coats of polyurethane and was done!

This is our living room before with the large square storage ottoman. 

It had been really cramped with that ottoman there so we replaced it with the new coffee table. Then we switched the couch and loveseat around to make room for the recliner Terry likes upstairs. I really like how it turned out!

Thursday, May 8, 2014

Samuel reading

Samuel goes through occasional spells where he likes to look through books. I caught him on this day all by himself looking through one of our many kid Bibles.

Peek-a-boo blue eyed tousled hair boy!