Tuesday, June 16, 2009

First Day/Last Day

I have a tradition where every year I take pictures of the girls on both the first and the last days of school. It's amazing to see how much they've grown in just nine months!

First Day...

...and Last Day!

Ready for a summer of fun!

Monday, June 15, 2009

For Today... Monday, June 15, 2009

Outside my window... Lawn freshly mowed last night, birds at the feeder outside our kitchen window, sun rising over the green fields.
I am thinking... of some fun things to do with my mom while she's visiting us this week.
From the learning rooms...Summer Bridge workbooks, worksheets sent home from teachers, ideas for books to read this summer.

I am thankful for... the wonderful weekend we had with Hannah's China group. Special, lifelong friends we love spending time with!

From the kitchen... cupboards looking pretty bare - must do grocery shopping this afternoon. Lots of fresh fruit in the fridge, though - we're keeping up with that. Also planning a Cookie-of-the-Week this summer to try some new recipes. And planning to have a couple of friends try canning and pickling with me this summer.

I am wearing... my coffee cup jammies (it's still early)!
I am reading... more knitting books and magazines, canning books, cookbooks from the library. Trying to find a novel or biography or something to "get into" this summer...

I am hoping... that we have great weather on Father's Day for our day at Blackberry Farm (with a little music by Lee Murdock).

I am creating... a new knitting bag... a knit market bag (to learn knitting in the round)... a cute apron... some future birthday and Christmas gifts...

I am praying... that referrals from China come soon, and that it's a big batch.

Around the house... finishing touches on the freshly-painted laundry room... fabric and yarn for projects... laundry everywhere (the laundry room was out of commission for the better part of last week)... swim suits and towels for swim lessons this week... Crocs and flip flops everywhere - a sure sign of summer!

One of my favorite things... having my girlies home with me for the summer! I love having them around me (even when they bicker)!

A few plans for the rest of the week... grocery shop, clean and tidy for my Mom's visit this week... swimming lessons begin today... trips to Joann and Michael's (with coupons) to gather more project materials... a night out with my Mom... a day at Red Oaks Nature Center in North Aurora... an opthamologist appointment so I can get new bifocals (sigh!).

Sunday, June 14, 2009

Rachel's 7th Birthday Portraits

Rachel also had her birthday portraits taken last week. Here's a look at our spunky, impish 7-year-old...

Saturday, June 13, 2009

Hannah's 10th Birthday Portraits

I took Hannah in for her 10th Birthday portraits last week. Yes, I know her birthday was 'way back in April. She has been growing out her bangs, and I really wanted to give them a few extra weeks to "blend in" before attempting portraits. I think it was worth the wait. Enjoy!

Friday, June 12, 2009

The Life of a Humble Kidney Bean

This spring, I thought it would be fun for Abbie to watch a seed become a plant. I grabbed a few kidney beans from my pantry, and we wrapped them in damp paper towel and put them in a ziplock bag in a dark cupboard. A few days later, they had sprung little hair-like, white roots! It was time to plant them in plastic cups...

Spooning some potting soil into the cups...

Carefully planting the beans, roots pointing down...

Happy to be working with "nature"!

Give them a little drink, then wait a few days to see what happens...

A few days later, we had a tiny plant (you probably can't even see it in this picture)!
I gave Abbie a terra cotta pot and dish to decorate with paints, and plant her bean plants in. A couple of weeks later we had some big, wonderful leaves!
Then, Abbie decided to do a little art project with some of the leaves. She took out her little safety scissors and got to work. I thought she was just going to snip a few leaves off, but she ended up hacking away at that poor plant!
Her works of art...

...and all that remained of the bean plant! :(

It was, I keep reminding myself, a learning experience!