School’s out for the summer!

Another school year is over! I see what people mean now when they say the years really do start to fly as your kids get older. I wanted to compare the kids’ first and last day pics.  Here’s the best we got!

2nd grader, Gabriel:

He especially looks and acts a lot older. He’s already up to my shoulders and has a very inquisitive mind. He raises a lot of questions about faith and eternity. Deep. He’s seriously already missing his teacher, he thinks she’s the best thing ever.

1st grader, Lucy:

She continues to be our social butterfly and excels in school. She’s reading waaay above her level and picks up things very quickly. She loved 1st grade and told me this summer she would like to tour the KLOVE studio and go swimming. Goals!

Preschooler, Amelia:

Amelia has probably grown up the most of all. She’s independent, can speak for herself, LOVES preschool and cannot sleep with bumps in her comforter. She’s probably going to be our most challenging child thus far with giving us a run for our money. She informed me the other day that she kissed so-and-so and they’re in love. Ahem. We had to have a talk.


Photo credit to Jeremiah Costello, what a great job he did!

Honestly, all the kids were sad to be done with the school year! They have such AMAZING teachers and their school really is a family. I know everyone talks about how great their kid’s school and teachers are and blah blah blah, but this is legit. The school we have here is a gem and seriously one of a kind. I cannot imagine a better school to educate and prepare our kids for the world, not only in content, but real life and interpersonal skills. We are so incredibly blessed to have this school!!!!

Our plans for the summer? Well I’m going to continue growing a human. Other than that, we’ve talked with G and L about some reading goals, hopefully 1 book per week. If they do that I am going to be thrilled! J has some goals for all of us learning a second language and honing some musical skills. We plan to make several trips and will resume lessons in Costello’s Summer School of Life. G has gotten several opportunities lately, including helping to drive a mini excavator, pulling a calf, burying some deceased pets, castrating cows, lighting controlled fires and defeating chickens for their eggs. Good stuff. We have family visiting several times and are planning to go to Kentucky to visit the Arc as well as San Diego for training/mini vaca. There’s a lot of local places we want to take the kids so hopefully my energy levels can suffice.

Happy summertime!!!

Day in the Life: 5/9/18

Haven’t done one of these in awhile! Here goes:

3:30am Amelia is up to use the bathroom. I walk her back to her bed and I cannot. fall. asleep. Why?! It’s raining and nice and cool in our room so there’s really no reason because Lord knows I’m tired. So I lay there for an hour…

6:45am My alarm goes off and I barely notice. I don’t actually get out of bed until 7:05 because I. am. tired. This is BAD. I have food to deliver to the school before 7:30am for Teacher Appreciation Week for the teacher breakfast and NONE OF THE KIDS ARE AWAKE. They normally get up at 6:50am. I hustle to get dressed and run off to the school. When I return J says he roused them all and they’re up. When I get upstairs the only person out of bed is Amelia, and she’s crying on the stairs. What’s new? Amelia cries 6 out of 7 mornings when she wakes up. Always a pleasant way to start the day.

7:25am The kids are eating breakfast, Gabriel has decided that everyone needs to eat applesauce out of syrofoam bowls. Fine. I don’t care, just eat something! They have that and a few homemade breakfast cookies. I fix hair and keep reminding them to eat more and talk less. Gabriel and Lucy start wrestling in the living room, which I promptly stop. Amelia throws a fit about wearing the sandals I think she should wear, so she wears the fancy ones instead. She shows me how she’ll shake the wood chips from the playground out of her shoes when it inevitably gets in there. Perfect.


It’s all a whirl

7:50am We leave for school. Today we take the van but have been walking lately with the nice weather. They get to school just as the first bell rings. Whew. Made it.

8am I make our last preschool payment at school (they only have a few days left of school!!) and then head home. I let Ruth sit in a booster seat for the whopping 3 blocks that we drive. It’s just easier. Don’t tell anyone… Ruth insists on feeding the bunnies, so I let her even though G and L just fed them.


8:10am Ruth and I head out for our 30 minute walk. She points out every single squirrel and dog and sits happily in the jogger with her cup ‘o milk. We stop by the post office and get the mail. There is a LOT. We get a new book from the Dolly Parton Imagination Library. Upon arriving home Ruth is insistent that we read it. It’s actually really cute! I’m happy to sit for awhile and rest because my pelvis is yelling at me.


9-11am I use this 2 hrs to get stuff done around the house. Well, as much as you can when you’re almost 28 weeks pregnant. I have to sit down often because I start to feel like junk whenever I’m trying to be productive or on my feet too long, but we fill that time with reading books that Ruth happily brings me. We do some laundry, empty and load the dishwasher, pick up a bit around the house, vacuum the dirty back crevice of the window seat in the kitchen, sort mail and then venture outside.


The laundry room overfloweth–bins for socks, etc

It’s a beautiful day! Some friends stop over and we play until Amelia gets off the bus at 11. Ruth finds/makes/eats/plays/sits in some dirt and mud. She gets SO dirty. I scrub her off with a washcloth and call it good.

11:30am Lunch time! We eat on the porch, tuna sandwhiches, cut up mango and cheese. Amelia’s little friend across the street is yelling for her to come play, but she says ‘My family is eating lunch! I’ll have to play later!’. We clean up lunch and Amelia reminds me that I said she could paint my toe nails. Of course. She chooses purpley glitter.


A dirty child is a sign of a good day 😉

12:30pm NAP TIME! I change Ruth. We read a few books and I put Amelia and Ruth down in their beds. Amelia doesn’t nap every day but I can tell today that she needs one. She’s quite sassy. They both are asleep really quickly. Some days I lay down but today I know I have stuff that needs done in the quiet time and I actually feel ok. I start another load of laundry and for a short time all 4 hampers in our house are EMPTY. Happy day!

12:45-1:45pm I spend this time today doing something I don’t enjoy: making phone calls. Ugh. Insurance companies, internet providers, several calls to each. I think I’ve got everything straightened out. I really try to sit down in the afternoons for at least 1-2 hrs if I can on days I’m home (if I don’t nap) otherwise I have a hard time getting through the rest of the day. Sad but true. I put a dozen eggs in instant pot to hard boil. I use the 5-5-5 method and it works like a charm. I put off sorting kid’s shoes to go into storage and folding laundry.


2-2:30 pm I still have 30 mins before the big kids get home from school and the 2 little girls are magically still sleeping. I power up the computer, eat a Cadbury Egg (the last from Easter!), read some emails and look for some new sandals for Ruth. This is much more enjoyable than phone calls!

2:35pm Amelia is up. So is Ruth. They chatter a bit upstairs before I rescue Ruth from her crib. She climbs everything….except out of her crib. And I’m ok with that!

2:36pm Gabriel and Lucy arrive home from school. It’s Wednesday so it’s early out day. Lucy brings home allll of her artwork from the year so we have to go through and admire it. Wednesday folders come home today with usually a TON of stuff to go through, sign, sort, etc. I start that task while the kids run around like banshees. I always have a good sized pile of papers to go through. Lucy has a notice for an overdue book that must be back before next week. She searches all over the house but still can’t find it and is distraught that she may have to pay the $4.99 replacement fee out of her bank. Life lessons, girl.


Ruth has apparently been woken up from her nap too soon, as I find her like this:


The kids finish a new floor puzzle Nana brought. It’s 4 feet tall and they’re pumped. They all have to lay down next to it and see if they’re 4 feet tall as well.


We go outside for awhile and I find a sunny chair to sit in because, well, I’m tired and it’s really nice out. The kids run around and play and then it’s on to dinner prep. I seem to ALWAYS be in the kitchen. And lately, I’m in the kitchen, pregnant, and barefoot. How’s that for a cliche for you?

5:00pm We eat. It’s early but I don’t care. We avoid the concession stand so it’s just easier to eat before ball games if possible. I made a GF pepperoni and pineapple pizza. The kids  I pretty much eat almost all of it except for the pieces I save for J to eat. It’s so good. (The Bob’s Red Mill GF pizza crust mix is very tasty, our favorite). G runs around getting dressed in between bites of pizza because he didn’t listen the first 2 times I told him to get ready to go.



5:15pm We’re off to baseball. Gabriel puts on his socks and shoes in the car while we drive because he’s taking too long to get dressed. The kids fight because one wants country on the radio and another wants KLOVE. We get to the field in time for warmups.

6pm Baseball game! Gabriel does well, hits and fields. He’s improving and fun to watch! J meets us there. Ruth repeatedly attempts to wander into the parking lot and loves climbing on the bleachers. Amelia and Lucy run around with the other kids and play. We sit comfortably in our new chairs 🙂 I forget to snap any pictures until later.


7:45pm Get back home. It’s so beautiful out! The kids bounce for awhile and J tries to convince me that this summer he should build on our garage. And if we do that our garage will be bigger than our house. I suppose that’s every man’s dream. He’s apparently planted a money tree out back that I have not discovered yet. Ruth runs around with 1 shoe on and no bottoms because….4th child. She’s a free spirit I guess. We pick up all the toys and head inside.


8pm It’s actually the kids’ bedtime but they desperately need to bathe. G heads upstairs while J gives the little girls a bath downstairs and I lay out outfits for tomorrow and switch more laundry. Lucy hops in the shower after G. I notice G still has black paint under his eyes from baseball, but he swears that he washed his face. I’m a bit skeptical. I mop up a bunch of water on the floor since Lucy has a hard time keeping the water in the shower for some reason. We brush hair, supervise teeth brushing, read stories, pray and tuck into bed.

8:40pm All the kids are finally in bed. Whew. Always a relief. I debate on whether to shower or wait till morning, but procrastination wins. I catch up on emails and blogs I like to read and put my feet up for a bit. Load the dishwasher and pick up a bit. I do wish we weren’t out of ice cream 😦

10:30pm Sleep. I stayed up too late once again, as I have to be up at 5:40am the next day for work. That’ll be a butt-kicker. Some day I’ll learn!


Friday Five: 5/4/18

  1. I never got around to writing a post on Gabriel’s 1st Communion, so I’ll just lump that right in here. Being Catholic, 1st Communion is a big deal. Gabriel has been looking forward to this for a long time, and I am so happy and proud that he understands the importance of communion and appreciates/believes in what he is partaking. This day was so special for our family! We had an amazing turnout of family to support Gabriel at Mass and a great party afterwards. Gabriel got a ton of very generous and neat gifts. We got him this Action Bible (This is a really cool book, highly recommend for anyone who likes comic books especially!!!) and another really cool gift was this Lego Mass set. Can hardly believe my little boy is so grown up!!


2. Lucy turned 7! Yet another thing I can hardly believe! Lucy had school on her birthday, and I surprised her and showed up to eat lunch with her. You should have seen the look on her face! PS-Our kids’ school lunch is actually really good…. So for the kids’ birthdays we usually let them pick whether they would like to have a friend party or have J and I take them out for a one-on-one day/evening date. Lucy chose the later and I couldn’t have been happier. I much prefer to do the date than throw a party! So Lucy requested that we go out for sushi (no, not kidding, and she loved it!). After that we decided to go ice skating (I sat out and watched, of course, no ice skating for this preggo) and also got ice cream. Lucy was tickled to hold hands with both of us all night and she so enjoyed the one on one time. It was the perfect evening until our sitter text us that G cut his head open….never a dull moment!

Lucy also got some new spectacles for her birthday and she looks so great in them!  (Thanks Aunt Mel!!)


3. We have entered into baseball/softball season. I really enjoy watching my kids in their activities!! I do have to admit that I really like watching baseball/softball over other things (ahem, wrestling) probably because it’s nicer outside than in a gym(?). G and L are both playing, so we have games to attend 3-4 nights/week for the next 8 weeks. I’m all good with that except that one can only eat sandwiches for dinner so many times and our chairs stink! We are in the market for some new seating this year, because we are using some we’ve had since we got married that have seen better days, and this 5-times-pregnant body needs a decent place to sit. I’m coveting these chairs because they’re amazing, that’s all.

4. Not to keep bragging up on my kids, but Gabriel WROTE A SONG for the piano! Talk about being a proud mama! He’s going to play it for a recital that the kids have coming up. He’s starting to learn to play chords and practices all. the. time for about 2 mins at a time. Hey, I won’t complain. The kid who I thought wouldn’t like piano has really taken a liking to it. I keep planting the seed in their heads that Gabriel, Lucy, and J could totally be a family act and do cantoring/accompanying with piano at church by the time they’re in high school. They’re considering it 😉


5. Almost 27 weeks with this pregnancy! It really is flying by, but I know that the last trimester is literally 15 months long, soooo we’ll see how that goes. We have yet to agree on a boy’s name, but have oodles of girls names that we both like. Each pregnancy gets a little harder to name babies, because, well, I’m married to a teacher. That’s another whole post in itself. I’m starting to wake at night with the dreaded leg cramps. I woke up at midnight last night with my great toe stuck straight up in the air and a muscle in the front of my lower leg on fire! OUCH!!!!! Why does that have to happen?! People are repeatedly asking me when I’m due because the belly is mega-size already. I have been able to walk for exercise at least some this time around, which wasn’t doable with my last pregnancy, so that’s a plus. I’m getting slower, can’t eat as much, moving is more difficult, and my pelvis almost breaks in two when I roll over in bed. It’s actually kind of frightening when it audibly clunks where it shouldn’t. With each pregnancy I have the same problem spots in my pelvis. Anyhoo, I’m feeling a lot more baby movements, which is enjoyable! I snagged a baptismal gown the other day because the price was right and it’s uber pretty, although it is very girly so it has a 50/50 chance of getting worn this go-around. Other than that we have bought nothing baby gear/clothing related, and I don’t think we should have to, which is nice. I may start stockpiling diapers when the nesting bug hits, which I expect to be soon 😉