Sunday, September 15, 2013

The Fair

We took the girls to the Washington State Fair yesterday.  We took them 3 years ago when they were just 2 1/2, and figured we'd try it again this year but we should not have gone on a Saturday.  Super crowded and traffic was horrible.

We started off with the rides.  The girls wanted to go on one of the kiddie coasters and I thought they'd love it, but apparently their experience on that ride at Silverwood earlier this summer scarred them pretty good, and Olivia got scared and started crying.  Oops.  They rode another ride and enjoyed it, but then they just wanted to play some games, so we played Skee Ball (Paul and I ended up doing it for them) and Paul managed to win a little animal.

After the rides we looked at most of the animals and then they were ready to go.

Friday, September 13, 2013

Our New Routine

Now that the girls are in kindergarten, we have a whole new routine.  Gone are the days of sleeping in until 8:00, snuggling in bed every morning and hanging out in their pajamas until almost lunchtime or later.  Mornings are very different around here lately, and much to my surprise the transition hasn't been that hard, thanks to making gradual changes in the few weeks leading up to this and a few trial runs.

6:30 - I get up and get ready (usually having showered the night before.  I still wet and blow dry my hair but I don't have to shower).

7:00 - The girls get up, get dressed, comb their hair and brush their teeth.  I really need to work on getting them to make their own beds too but I usually just do it because I don't have the patience.  We're going to work on that.

7:30 - Breakfast

8:00-8:20 - Get shoes on, gather backpacks, etc. before going to the bus stop.  We usually have about 10 or so minutes to spare, but I'm sure that won't always be the case!

8:25 - Walk to bus stop

8:27 - Bus comes

8:27-12:30 - My free time to do WHATEVER!  So far I ran errands on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday, Thursday I did a DVD workout and some housework, and today I had a volunteer orientation at the school, then I went for a walk, showered, had lunch and now I'm doing computer stuff and am about to go fold laundry.  Every other Friday they have school until 1:25 and every other Friday they have no school, because the other grades all have early dismissal every Friday.  I have no idea why.

After school we have lunch (except Fridays-they eat at school), then the girls usually play with friends until dinner time.  Lately we've been going for bike rides or to the park after dinner.  We want to do a lot of that while we still can before it starts getting dark much earlier.

8:00ish - Start bedtime routine (earlier if someone is having a bath)

8:30 - Bedtime

Monday, September 9, 2013

First Day of Kindergarten

It's finally here.  We found out yesterday afternoon that there would be no strike and school was ON.  We finalized their outfit choices, filled out a little questionnaire I found on Pinterest, I packed their lunches and they were in bed by 8:30.  I set their alarm for 7:00, and mine for 6:30 so I could be all ready before they got up (I showered last night), but they came into my room around 6:40, all excited.

I walked them to the bus stop, then I had to jump in my car and race to the school to try and be there when they got off the bus but I didn't quite make it.  Some of their friends' moms were there in time though (they got an earlier start because the girls have one of the last stops) and got some pictures.  I walked them to their classroom (actually, they mostly walked with their friends and I walked behind--they barely knew I was even there), took a few more pictures, and I was out of there.  Then I went to Trader Joe's.  By myself.  On a weekday morning.

The pictures are all in reverse chronological order.

Kayley at their table

Olivia at their table

At their table (they got to choose where to sit and I was filling out paperwork at the time or I would have suggested different tables-oops)

Walking to the playground with their friends after putting their stuff away.  The bell rang before they got there and they had to turn right around and come back.

Next to each other at the same table and also with one of their friends next to Kayley-that might not last long...

Just got off the bus

Getting on the bus - that's Olivia at the top of the stairs w/the purple backpack and her hand on the rail.  Kayley is right behind her.

Just about to board the bus

Waiting for the bus

Waiting for the bus with Abby

On their way to the bus stop with Abby and her little sister Emma

Before going to the bus stop

Kayley's lunch - cheese sandwich, goldfish and raisins, peaches and pears

Olivia's lunch - turkey and cheese roll-up, yogurt-covered pretzels, peaches and pears

Sunday, September 8, 2013

Summer Vacation - Week 13

This was our LAST week before school!  Or, at least, it's supposed to be if the teachers don't go on strike :(  We'll see.

Anyway, Monday was Labor Day and we were still up in MV at Dad's.

Tuesday - Paul had the day off and we ended up finishing putting the girls' new dresser together.

Wednesday - The girls' kindergarten assessment.

Thursday - had a successful "trial run", getting up and ready in time for school, then played with friends ALL DAY LONG, from 8:30 until right before bedtime.

Friday - Went to Starbucks, then a play date with another friend that isn't one of the ones they play with all the time.  Came home for lunch, then got haircuts and frozen yogurt and went to a park.  Had family movie night after dinner and watched Mary Poppins.

Here's a picture of their new haircuts (not really different, just trimmed up), complete with eyes closed and suckers in mouths.  That's how we roll.

Yesterday we just hung out at home (and played with friends of course) and today we are skipping church to watch the Seahawks season opener.  Go Hawks!  They won all 4 of their preseason games for the second year in a row and should have a great season, but we'll see.  And that marks the end of summer vacation (hopefully...please no strike...PLEASE no strike...)!

Friday, September 6, 2013

Mixed Emotions

The girls start Kindergarten in 3 days.  I'm mostly very excited and looking forward to all the free time I will have to do projects, errands, or just read and watch The View.  But I'm also really sad because it really is the end of an era, a time in my life that has been the absolute most precious and special time I will ever have.  My girls'--my only children--'s baby/toddler/preschool years.  I have treasured these last 5 and a half years of being their stay-at-home mommy and primary caregiver, and while I will obviously continue to be their mommy and primary caregiver, it will soon be very different.

When I look back over the last 5 and half years, I remember all of the fun stuff we did that we never could have done (except for a little bit on weekends and vacations) if I hadn't been able to be home with them.  Playing at all kinds of different parks whenever we felt like it, mom's group play dates, story time at the library, going for walks and bike/scooter rides around the neighborhood, going to the zoo, museums, or just playing at home together.  I have SO treasured all of that, and it's already been different in the last year or so with them playing with friends so much more and then going to preschool, but now that they are starting "real" school, it really is the end of that chapter in our lives.

Five years ago the girls were 6 months old and our days pretty much consisted of feedings and naps.  I was still in a bit of a daze, not recognizing my life at all (having gone from a single girl who used to go out to nice restaurants, lots of movies, the theater/ballet/symphony/concerts, shop and buy what I wanted to a married new mom of twins living on one income).  This day seemed SO far away, but here it is.

I posted some months ago how the girls were always asking me to play with them and I want to but always have so much to do first.  Not that I never play with them-I manage to work it in but not as much as I'd like.  Now in the last few days I've found myself craving playtime with them, probably because I'm feeling all sentimental and wanting to hold on to these last "early years" moments.  But they are almost always playing with one friend or another, or several, and we've hardly had any mommy time lately.  Although this morning we did go to Starbucks before a play date (I got my first Pumpkin Spice Latte of the season!  Woo-hoo!), and later this afternoon we're going to go get back-to-school haircuts and a frozen yogurt.

Thursday, September 5, 2013

Getting Ready

The girls had their kindergarten assessments yesterday.  They did well and it was fun to see their classroom again and for them to chose a cubby and put all their stuff away.

Waiting outside their classroom for their turns

Our normal morning routine is that the girls get up anywhere between 7:00 and 8:00, but usually around 7:30, get in bed with me, then watch some TV while I get on the computer.  We have breakfast around 8:30 or 9:00.  Then it's like pulling teeth to get them dressed and comb their hair and brush their teeth before noon.  But with school starting soon we obviously need to be up earlier an much more streamlined in our routine, so today we did a "trial run".  I set the alarm to get up almost as early as we will need to for school (tomorrow we will get up at the actual time, but I figured we'd ease into it), then they got dressed, combed their hair and brushed teeth right away, and then had breakfast, in an attempt to be all ready by 8:20 as though it were an actual school day.  I can't believe it but we were successful!  Then we watched as the school bus went by (school has already started for the older kids) and the other kids got on, so they could see where they will wait for and get on the bus come Monday.  One of their friends was out there because she had walked with her older brother to the bus stop and was walking back home so then she of course came over to play so I didn't get to have any mommy time with the girls like I wanted, but maybe later today.

Tomorrow we will do another trial run, then I'm going to take them to Starbucks for a little treat on our last weekday before school.

No more lounging in mommy's bed in the mornings!

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Summer Vacation - Week 12

6 days to go!  Their school actually starts tomorrow, but all the kindergarteners have assessments this week so they don't start class until next Monday the 9th.  Here was our second to last week of summer vacation:

Monday - Played at home all morning (Olivia looked for friends to play with but no one was available).  After lunch, went to the library, then to Starbucks for a cake pop.  Only they didn't have the right kind, so we had to go to the frozen yogurt place instead, but Olivia still wanted a hot chocolate and I still got a skinny vanilla latte.

Tuesday - Played at home all morning, then with friends all afternoon.

Wednesday - Wanted to run some errands after breakfast, but the girls just wanted to play.  After lunch they started playing with a neighbor girl, but I finally coaxed them into the car around 3:00.  We went to the bank and then the pet store for cat food.  They love looking at all the animals.

Thursday - Went to the free matinee.  This week it was Rise of the Guardians.  The movie was at noon, which means we would have had to eat lunch at 11:00 but we don't usually eat breakfast until at least 9:00, so they just had a snack and then we went to McDonald's after the movie (just for them--I ate before because I didn't want McDonald's).

Friday -  Played with friends briefly after lunch then went to Target.  Whoo-hoo.

Labor Day Weekend

We had a busy weekend.  On Saturday, we went to Ikea to get the girls a new dresser.  It's not exactly what I would have liked, but it's about the best I could find for under $300.

Of course, while we were there I kept wanting to look at all kinds of stuff but the girls were whining to go already.  I am so going to go back by myself one of these Saturdays.  I did manage to snag some picture frames for $1.99 each, some cutting boards, measuring spoons and some neat cups for the girls.

Hitchin' a ride with Daddy (Olivia is holding a balloon rabbit but it was starting to fall apart, and Kayley's balloon sword had already popped.

On Sunday I had to help in their Sunday School class, but right after we headed up to Deception Pass to spend the day at the beach with a friend and her son.  The girls played in the forts that people had built out of driftwood, and they swam in a lake on the other side of the beach from the ocean (Strait of Juan de Fuca).  We had a picnic dinner of chicken, cole slaw and fruit, and made s'mores on a camp stove.

After our day at the beach, we went to my dad's in MV to spend the night, and then Monday morning went out to breakfast and then to visit my mom (who is in a Alzheimer's care facility).  After visiting mom, we took the girls to two different parks, and then had dinner at dad's and then came home.