Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Portia's First Day of Kindergarten

Portia's first day of kindergarten was today. She is in Mrs. Eldredge's afternoon kindergarten class. There was a little confusion about the bus schedule and a friend of mine who also has a kindergartener said that there may not be a bus coming at all. She suggested to just wait at the bus stop a half hour before school starts and hope that one comes.

So, right at noon, I got Portia all ready, got her backpack mounted on her back, and then we walked out to the street to wait for a bus that may or may not be coming. As we turned around the corner, there was a bus coming. All huge and yellow and loud. We waved, and the bus stopped. It was all so sudden, but the bus driver said Portia should get on. Portia didn't even question it. She bravely climbed the tall steps onto the bus and sat in the seat right behind the bus driver. Then the bus whisked her away. So quickly! Way sooner than I expected.

I started walking back home when I felt this strange stinging sensation in my eyes. Yes, I know what it was but I really didn't think that I would get sentimental like that. Sure, that was the last child I would send off to kindergarten for the first time. And she's just so little and sweet!

She came home so excited and happy! And ready to go back again tomorrow!

Sunday, August 26, 2012

Mouse Trap Concerto

Portia's favorite new piece to practice on the cello--the mouse trap Concerto. It's the sound of a mouse squealing and the thump of the mouse trap shutting on said mouse. She actually wants to practice beyond regular practice time on this little gem!

As a side note, this is Portia's "temporary" room down in the basement, which is our home until work officially is complete. I'm trying to stay positive about it. It could still be weeks. On our way home from St. Louis, caravaning with my mom and Susannah, we made a detour through Winter's Quarters, Nebraska. We let the kids stretch their legs and walked around the visitor's center. I went inside the little makeshift huts the pioneers were so grateful to have--the size of like one of the bedrooms we each have down in the basement--and I try to think of them when I start to feel upset about my current living conditions. Then it feels like plenty of room.

I didn't take a picture of the little Winter's Quarters home, but here are the cousins at the visitor's center pretending to push a handcart all dressed up as pioneers.

L to R: Aidan, Anna, Ella, Portia, Ethan and Bianca

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

First Day of School 2012

This wasn't the first day of school I'd been imagining for Bianca. In my head, the house was completely finished and sparkly clean by the first day of school. Most of the boxes were unpacked. We'd definitely not be using plastic forks to cut up the peanut butter toast for the first-day-of-school breakfast. But alas, first day of school came and our house is far from done.

Bianca's been so excited--and nervous--for the first day at Westfield. She couldn't sleep past 6am. So she read for a while, then practiced viola (still no piano in the house), ate breakfast, fixed her hair, read some more, double-checked the list of school supplies in her backpack, then we walked to the street over for Bianca to wait at the bus stop. The bus didn't even come until 9am, but it's awesome because we are THE very last stop before the school.

Bianca didn't want me to walk her to the bus stop, but Portia could. So I let them walk together and then I came to get Portia (maybe that was her way of feeling like I wasn't there for her). I peeked around the bushes five minutes later just to make sure the bus did, in fact, come. It did. And when I saw she was gone, I started to feel nervous for her. I so hope the kids are nice and welcoming and that Bianca is smiling when she returns this afternoon the way she was this morning. I won't wait for her at the bus stop--I'll just be weeding on that far end of our yard. =)

Portia has one more week until her first day because they do pre-assessment for incoming kindergarteners. I'll be nervous for her too, but in kindergarten it's much easier to make friends than when you're the new girl in sixth grade. One more week of this awesome girl until she's officially a school girl. (Again, in my mind, there was no wood stacked up in the background or a layer inch of dust on the floor.)

It's hard for me, but I'm trying to let go of my ideas of perfection and try to start finding the little bits of perfection within all the imperfection!

Thursday, August 2, 2012

Projects, projects, and more projects...

Yeah, so, this is the summer of projects. We're doing it all before we move in completely so the dust can be swept out after the summer ends and it finally settles. I don't know how I could have done all this work in the house without pinterest. Seriously, I've gotten so many ideas there. My latest idea was inspired by these two pins:

So I told Eric what I wanted (a nice big magnetic board) and where I wanted it (in that hallway behind my kitchen where there's this huge blank wall) and he got to work. He used some of the excess woodwork we have lying around the house. For him, it was an excuse to buy a mitre saw and a nail gun. Oh well, I guess this means he can do even more projects around the house! He finished up the job tonight and I am so impressed with how awesome it looks! Yay for me for marrying a handy guy! Here it is:

We put magnets on these wooden letters and wooden creatures for the girls. The paint color looks not quite right here but it's a brick red that I just love. (I think the color is called Bold Brick.) I think this will be a great use of this hallway with the bench.

While I'm away (and it's coming up on a month now), Eric and I skype so he can show me what's getting done in the house. What a useful too, this skying! Bianca's also been skyping viola lessons with her instructor and I was able to skype in on my book club last month. Ah, the conveniences of modern technology!

On another note, the tile was done in Bianca's bathroom today (not by my husband). Here it is before the tub goes in. I think I love it.