A Peek Into Our Week

posted by Andrea | 10/7/2019

We’re a full week into October and about 7 weeks into the school year already — which means we have a short week coming up soon for Teacher Convention.

Of course, this means Dave is gone and I’m home with the kids all day, but we have some fun things planned to pass the time… we’re hoping to visit my sister and her family, do some fun Halloween things, visit the zoo, go to Rebounderz, and probably lots of baking!

We’ll also be getting family pictures later this month (provided that the weather cooperates!)

In the meantime, we’ll continue taking our own family pictures with the tripod

The “big news of the week” is that Nora sprained her ankle (rough-housing with the boys) last weekend. We didn’t really believe her until she was STILL saying it hurt Tuesday morning. We got into the podiatrist on Tuesday and she ended up staying home from school on Wednesday due to swelling and just over-all discomfort and not sleeping well the nights prior. 

Wednesday is the day both boys are also home anyway (and it was raining) so we spent most of the day inside, reading, playing games, coloring, and having a little movie marathon! 

I didn’t accomplish anything on my Wednesday To-Do list — but I did take some time to look through all the resources on the Genious Blogger Toolkit (available through today only) and I finished the book I was reading before my 3 free months of Kindle Unlimited expired!

Overall, it was a fairly “relaxing” day at home for me too. 

Speaking of books, here are the books I’ve finished recently…

We’ve also been plowing through The Puppy Place books with the kids after dinner — such fun little books and the older 3 are all very interested in them! 

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In other family news…

Nora is loving everything about 2nd grade and is even more independent. She is extremely strong-willed yet very obedient, and she really is SO sweet.

A few weeks into the school year, she asked me if it was OK for her to play with her own friends at recess. I was confused and said, “yes, why wouldn’t it be OK to play with your friends?” She responded by telling me that Simon was too shy to play with his own friends so she had been playing with him at EVERY recess for the first several weeks of school! 

What a sweet big sister! 

Nora loves reading, which makes me so happy since I never liked reading as a child. She learns so much from books (and tells me most of it!) I hope our other kiddos follow suit! 

Nora’s favorite pass time (other than reading) is “making messes” but she usually has a method to her madness! She’s always coming up with projects, craft ideas, and other activities for herself, her brothers, or anyone else — and they all involve getting out lots of little bits and pieces, making signs, crafting something crazy, etc. etc. 

She is crafty, she is creative, she is artistic, she is completely opposite of me! 

Simon goes to Kindergarten 3 full days a week — they are long days for him but he loves riding the bus with Nora and our neighbor kids (he got his first “love note” from the neighbor girl who rides the bus with him… apparently they sit together!)

He is starting to read — which is VERY exciting for him. Every day he has random things to show me… one day he could read a word on a sign, another day he absolutely NEEDED me to watch him write the letter “R”.  Apparently, he hadn’t been writing it correctly, but now he knows how and needed to show me 🙂

Simon can easily ride a 2-wheel bike now (after all summer of trying to encourage him, he finally decided to try it the first week of school — and immediately was able to do it no problem!) 

He is very into team sports right now — wearing “team shirts” and jerseys pretty much every day. He is also obsessed with coloring pictures of various team logos and mascots — if you know of any college football or NFL coloring books, send me the link, please!

James is enjoying preschool (2 mornings a week). He has his first field trip coming up this week, and he already had a visit from the Fire Department, a family outing to a local farm, and he got to be the Star Student for a day. 

James enjoys playing with Simon (they are both home 2 of the same days) and he keeps up with the older kids pretty well. He learned to ride a 2-wheel bike the day after Simon did, and he talks constantly about when he will be able to ride the bus next year.

I’ve had fun hanging out with just the younger 2 kiddos when Nora and Simon are at school — it’s a totally different dynamic, that’s for sure.

Although I know James misses Simon as his playmate 3 days a week, it is fun to see him being a sweet big brother for Clara.

Clara celebrated her 2nd birthday on September 25. We had a super small “party” (just our family) that weekend, and my parents and Dave’s parents came over at some point during the week to give her a gift as well.

I would highly recommend this approach to birthdays for younger kids who don’t really understand parties. We skipped traditional birthday parties for James and Clara and it was SO much easier! Of course, once they are older and “get it”, we definitely enjoy doing birthday parties for them.

Clara “talks” and “sings” almost all day long — always having an opinion about something and using ample hand gestures to get her point across.

She is completely unafraid of strangers (which freaks me out) and she has officially entered into the “terrible twos” — which really aren’t so “terrible” as much as they are amusing! 

She will throw herself on the ground and have a fit over random things, often choosing the bathroom rugs to lay on when she’s most upset. 

Her biggest issues right now are wanting to wear “JJ’s” (PJs) all day instead of clothing, not wanting her diaper changed, and insisting she needs “num nums” (M&M’s) at random times during the day.

Other than that, she is a very happy, very sweet little girl who LOVES trying to keep up with her older siblings!

I’ve been working my way through a full-house purge. I’ve doubled-up a couple of the rooms so I’ll hopefully be finished before Christmas break!

One thing I’ve noticed is that as my kids get older, we get more and more and MORE paper clutter! I swear I purge piles of it almost daily, but it’s still there, every time I turn around. 

In previous years, I’ve had them dump it in the metal caddy in our kitchen, but we are outgrowing that system. I’m working on coming up with some sort of system for the kids to dump everything in their backpacks when they get home — I’ll be sure to share it with you once I come up with something.

In the meantime, let me know if you have a great system that works well for your school papers! 

I haven’t put up any fall decorations yet this year — and I honestly don’t know if I will. 

I have my fall-scented candle burning every night and our favorite fall snack mix… that might be good enough this year! 

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Our Weekly Menu: 

**I’ve been asked if we’re still eating veggies for breakfast — my answer is YES! I eat vegetables for breakfast EVERY DAY, but our family as a whole does not always have vegetables every single day.

I usually have spring greens with roasted vegetables, feta cheese, and a fried egg (over easy) with Balsalmic Vinegar drizzled over top (it’s so good!) I eat this with fruit, and whatever other main dishes I’m serving for breakfast (pancakes, waffles, banana bread, oatmeal, etc.)

 

SUNDAY: 

Breakfast = cinnamon rolls, eggs, bacon, fruit

Dinner:

MONDAY: 

Breakfast: hearty whole-grain oat pancakes, eggs, sausage, fruit

Dinner: 

TUESDAY: 

Breakfast: whole grain banana bread, vegetable quiche, fruit

Dinner: 

WEDNESDAY:

Breakfast: leftover banana bread, bacon, smoothies (with veggies!)

Dinner: 

THURSDAY:

Breakfast: leftover waffles, fried sweet potatoes, bacon, eggs, fruit

Dinner: 

FRIDAY:

Breakfast: Oatmeal, sausage, yogurt parfaits

Dinner: 

SATURDAY:

Breakfast: toast, eggs, bacon, fried potatoes

Dinner: 

BAKED GOODS: 

Since we aren’t eating dessert after every meal anymore, I thought I would share a separate list of the baked goods I made this week…

Looking at my calendar for the rest of the month, I have something fun or special written on almost every single day —  hopefully, it will be a fun month! 

What fun things do you have planned for the month? 

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21 comments

  1. Susan

    10/08/2019

    Did you like the book Grace Based Discipline? I bought it but haven’t read it yet and I have so many parenting-type books that I don’t know which one I should read first. Ha!

    [Reply]

    Andrea Reply:

    yes, I loved it!
    It sort of made me feel like a failure as a parent (but only because she has so many awesome ideas that I never even thought to implement — not because she was “preaching” or acting “holier than thou”)

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  2. Brenda

    10/08/2019

    For my kids paper clutter, I try to have them give it to me every evening before they go to bed. They each have 1 clip magnet on the fridge and a bulletin board in their rooms. Anything they want to keep has to be able to go in one of those 2 spots. If it’s too full then they have to choose something to get rid of. My youngest is almost 8 and thought he needed to keep every paper for the last 3 years. I think he is finally growing out of that.

    [Reply]

  3. Jenny

    10/07/2019

    I really like that you’ve listed the books you’ve read recently! Some of them sound really good, and I’m going to check my library ASAP.

    [Reply]

    ShellyL Reply:

    Yes! Andrea, please keep including this section. Except, it kind of puts me to shame since I used to be such an avid reader and now I barely have time. How do you find the time to read so much?

    [Reply]

    Andrea Reply:

    these are books I’ve read over the past couple of weeks — not all last week!
    I usually have several books going at one time so I can pick and choose whatever one I’m in the mood for. I’m home with the kids all day so I have plenty of time waiting — waiting for them to finish eating, waiting to pick them up from preschool, waiting at the doctor, sitting and watching them play outside, etc. etc. I usually only read a few pages at a time, but it all adds up!

    [Reply]

    Andrea Reply:

    If you don’t already use the Libby App, you should check that out — it’s basically an online Library catalog where you can check books out of YOUR local library but then send them to the Kindle App on your device to read digitally!

    [Reply]

  4. Wilma

    10/07/2019

    For kids’ school and paper clutter, my method is pretty simple (I now have three in school). First, knapsacks are emptied out every day. Any paperwork that needs to be filled out/signed/etc is done immediately (usually while making dinner and helping with homework) and given back to the kids to put in their knapsacks.

    This leaves art work and homework. Art work is either displayed on the kitchen fridge or on oversized cork boards hung in the kids’ rooms (my oldest has his own room; his two little brothers share a room). Eventually, the art work is recycled or I put it in a plastic container to be scanned or photographed, and then recycled (I put the jpgs of their art work in our photobooks–sometimes even as a background for pictures.

    Now there is homework. Each of my kids has a magazine folder that we keep in the kitchen’s ‘pantry’, which is where I keep extra workbooks, an “at home” notebook for studying for spelling tests, dictées, etc, which does not need to be sent to school, and all their actual homework. I keep it in the kitchen because my kids still do the majority of their homework at the kitchen counter, usually while I’m preparing dinner.

    This seems to work for us, right now. I’m sure it’ll change as they get older! I like this system because it gives the kids some control, and myself control over all the paper that comes home 🙂

    I’m interested to hear what system you land on for your kids!

    [Reply]

    Andrea Reply:

    Thanks Wilma — they are actually really good with emptying their paper (and we quickly look through everything right away), but we often just end up putting everything in one basket and then going through it all over the weekend.

    [Reply]

  5. Cindy

    10/07/2019

    I love seeing your happy, healthy family!

    [Reply]

    Andrea Reply:

    Thanks Cindy

    [Reply]

  6. Jen

    10/07/2019

    Our boys always were–and still are–avid sports fans, especially pro and college football and basketball. Our older son loved mascots and team logos, etc. I remember checking many books out of the library for him on those subjects. I also remember them wanting to find the “coolest” college logo that fit with their initials. LOL! Our oldest son, Payton, chose the “P” in Purdue and our youngest son, whose name is Sawyer Christian, chose the University of South Carolina because their logo includes “SC”. One nice thing about having boys (or girls!) who are into sports is that it’s always easy to come up with a gift idea! Our boys still love getting “fan gear” or tickets to sporting events. Enjoy these days with your kiddos!

    [Reply]

    Andrea Reply:

    I was thinking about how it will be very easy to get them gifts if they keep loving team sports 🙂
    Simon already wants “jerseys” and a “team key chain” for Christmas!

    [Reply]

  7. Jamie

    10/07/2019

    Check out Amazon for coloring books for Simon. I found several that would probably be good.

    https://www.amazon.com/s?k=football+coloring+book&i=stripbooks&ref=nb_sb_noss_1

    [Reply]

    Andrea Reply:

    thanks!

    [Reply]

  8. Jen Fitzpatrick

    10/07/2019

    I have used something like this https://www.orientaltrading.com/red-file-folder-storage-pocket-chart-a2-59_9024.fltr?categoryId=551428 for homework and papers since my kids were little. It’s almost outgrown it’s usefulness in my house since I have high schoolers and a college student, but it still hangs on the wall and is in excellent shape after more than 10 or 11 years. I designated one spot for each child and the others were used for papers I needed to fill out, return, or hold onto until a specific date. The kids loved it and they always knew where their things were. I think I am know going to turn it into something useful for me to corral paperwork that I seem to always have floating around.

    [Reply]

    Andrea Reply:

    ok cool — thanks for sharing. I think I’d ideally want something with a “deeper” pocket so I can put things other than just folders or paper inside — but this is a good start!

    [Reply]

    Jen Fitzpatrick Reply:

    Mine is deeper than that, but since it is so old, I couldn’t remember exactly where I purchased it from. This was the closest thing I could find within the couple minutes I had available yesterday morning.

    [Reply]

    Andrea Reply:

    ok thanks!

    [Reply]

  9. Paulette

    10/07/2019

    Andrea, I’ve been following your blog since 2012. I absolutely love it and read every day. Your children are adorable (I remember Nora’s birth)! Your simple and practical approach to life is inspiring and your meal plans look mouthwatering. I’ve tried many of your recipes and your pumpkin delight dessert is a favorite with our family every thanksgiving. I’m 67 years old and I’ve learned so much from you. I wish I had been this knowledgeable and practical in my younger years. Keep up the amazing work!

    [Reply]

    Andrea Reply:

    Thank you, thank you, my friend!

    [Reply]