Thursday, April 14, 2016

October, Part 1

Sweet sisters, sharing a book.  Neither of them can read. :)

The big kids started a new game with Jocie called "Queen Jocelyn" where they'd prop her up with a bunch of pillows and blankets and call her the Queen.  That was about it.  

It wasn't much of a game, but she loved it and the big kids sure loved any excuse to drag out and play with all of the pillows and blankets we have in the house.

We ventured out in our wagon one afternoon to head over to a local garage sale.  Yes, Livy's arms are covered in pink marker.  That's just what Livy does (all the time).

Ben took the four big kids to a Chiawana football game.  They loved it!  We love attending sporting events and it's fun to have kids old enough to enjoy watching them with as well.

In October we had our church's General Conference.  After the Saturday sessions, and while Ben was at Priesthood session, I baked and the kids played dress up.  If anyone knows our sweet little Tomboy Leah, they know that she isn't in to fills and dresses and heals.  She got all dressed up as a joke and came to show me, giggling, and said "This is not me at all!"  I'm glad that she could have fun with it and laugh about it.  We love our Leah just the way she is.

The Sunday sessions were pretty peaceful at home.  The kids aren't perfect but they get a little better every year at sitting still and listening a little bit better.  It's extra fun when you have a sweet face like Jocie's to snuggle.

Ben made cinnamon rolls in the morning and we enjoyed those all day long.  Livy enjoyed them wearing princess gear.

October 6th was the twins' Golden Birthday- they turned 6!  It was a bright, warm sunny day to help in their celebration.

I drove by our lot on their birthday and saw that it had sprinklers on it to water and prep it for excavating.

Lexi came home with a birthday crown and was so excited about it.  She wore it off and on for weeks.

After homemade pizza for dinner, it was time to open presents!  (Fancy wrapping job with blankets on their big gift).

Grandma Cynde sent candy and adorable new snow hats!

Their gift from mom and dad of their own razor scooters was well received.  They have been "sharing" Chloe and Mitch's and it wasn't going super well.

They were glad to have their own.

Grandma and Papa's gift of hippity hops was a huge hit!  They hipped and hopped on those all night long.

Nana and Papa got them 3 Spanish books each.  They were not super thrilled the first night, as they hadn't learned to read in Spanish quite yet.  Months later, as they are now able to read in Spanish, they are thrilled.  It is so fun for them to be able to have books in Spanish that they can actually read and understand (they can't read English as they are only taught Spanish at school).  The books were a fabulous gift idea and have been well used.

Test driving their scooters indoors.

Chloe made each of the girls a very thoughtful gift.  She sewed Leah a pillow and blanket for her tiny stuffed animals and decorated a picture and frame for Alexis.  Both girls also received a cute Chloe coloring creation.  I love homemade, thoughtful gifts between siblings.

Cake time!  Both girls wanted an ice cream cake.  Their first choice was mint oreo (the same kind they've had the past two years, I believe) but we found out that sadly, Dairy Queen no longer makes that kind! (What?!)  They settled for cookie dough instead.

Twins are the best!

These sweet girls are such a blessing to our family.  Having twins keeps getting more fun every year. They have had different personalities since day one, but each year they continue to grow and change and blossom into their own, unique girl. 

Leah: Loves to be outdoors doing anything- riding bikes, climbing a tree, playing in dirt, kicking a ball, etc.  She loves sports and is a great ball thrower and runner.  She recently has started surprising us with doing lots of chores in secret.  She will clean the bedroom she shares with Lexi and Chloe from top to bottom and make all the beds, just because.  She once went out in the backyard and did all the cleanup that Ben had asked all the kids to help with.  She doesn't expect any rewards in return. This girl loves blankets and has 4 or 5 on her bed at any given time.  When we watch a family movie together, she has a designated spot on the floor where she will pile a few pillows and blankets and hunker down.  She prefers the floor to the reclining couch.  Leah is all about jeans.  She would probably sleep in a pair if we let her.  She will wear a dress to church with no complaints, but will only wear jeans or jean shorts to school.  She will only wear pink shirts on a few occasions.  Pink can be an accent color, or it has to be paired with a logo or design that she likes, otherwise it is a no-no.  She is obsessed with her tennis shoes and it is almost impossible to get her to wear any other shoes.  She is still as skinny as can be and it's hard to keep pants around her waist unless they have a drawstring or can be tightened.  She has a favorite shirt right now: a polo, striped shirt.  It is turquoise, white and pink striped.  She often tries to wear it multiple times a week.  Her new style obsession is putting a long sleeved shirt underneath any short sleeve shirt.  She sometimes will try and match the two, but often just puts any long sleeve shirt under, even under button up polos. :)  She is very picky about how her hair is styled.  Her favorite hairstyle is two small bunny ears, as we call it (shown in the cake picture above).  She is also ok with one bunny ear.  She will do a braid if it is small and only is braided down half way (she calls it a half braid).  She does not like full braids that encompass all of her hair.  She refuses to wear her hair in full pony tails, which surprises us with how active she is.  We would have thought she would love to have her hair out of her face when playing sports.  She loves to keep bins or boxes full of "treasures" that she finds.  She loves ninja turtles, animals and is our designated spider and bug catcher/killer (Lexi is good at it too).  She and Mitchell are great buddies who love being active together.  She HATES loud noises and is very afraid of loud wind, ceiling fans when they are on and anything else loud.  We recently had something burn on the stove, which set the fire alarm off.  She started panicking and crying almost immediately.  Even after we told her that everything and everyone was safe, she was still going crazy by the loud noise.  She was worried for days that the slightest thing would set off the smoke alarm.  She does not like the desk fan in her room on to the louder setting.  She also does not like the hall light on while they fall asleep and it is always a battle between her and Chloe as to who will get their way.  She has also been known to pack a secret bag in the car for any kind of trip (errands or long trips) with toys in there specifically for Olivia and Jocelyn to keep them happy and entertained.  She is great at sharing with everyone around the house.  She is a sweetheart and we adore her.

Alexis: Loves to color and draw.  She is always coming up with new and creative creations on paper. She is my second mommy and has a natural instinct for what Jocie and Livy need and is constantly volunteering to help watch them when needed.  She loves to write in her little notebooks.  She once took one to the store and would randomly stop in the isles while I was shopping and "write" things (numbers, letters, little drawings and the few words she knew at the time).  She is all girl and loves pink, nice dresses, cute shoes and sandals, accessories and purses.  Oh, this girl loves purses.  Every time we leave the house, she grabs her purse, even if there is nothing in it but a notebook.  She loves having her hair styled and loves letting Chloe experiment with cute hairstyles.  She loves a good braid in any form and loves full, high pony tails.  She is overly obsessed with leggings and would wear them every day if she could.  She practically does, and then wears through a pair in a few weeks and still wants to wear them, even after they are faded, stretched out or have holes in them.  She is our peace maker for the most part, but has a feisty side that pops out where she can explode.  She quickly gets over it and is usually very sweet to apologize for her shortcomings.  She is very loving and is the first one to thank someone for even the littlest thing and usually rewards them with one of her sweet hugs.  She loves to stay up late when given the opportunity but if it's for a family movie or something quiet, she almost always falls asleep on the couch or in the car on the way home and has to be carried up to bed.  She is a happy helper and is usually very sweet and obedient to help with whatever I need in the moment, even if it isn't her turn or no one else is helping.  She loves to wear shorts, especially her little pink track shorts and is always asking to wear her church sandals everywhere.  She is doing excellent in school and learning extremely fast.  Her teacher has messaged me a few times to let me know how pleased she is with her progress.  She is picking up on the Spanish language quickly and understands lots.  When asked to speak Spanish in front of others, she is shy and doesn't love to when put on the spot (Leah is totally fine with it).  But when we are helping Leah with homework, Lexi loves to jump in and shout out the answer to show how much she knows. Alexis has always been our little sweetie and we love every day with her.

Later int he week we drove by and ground had been moved!

Supplies had been dropped off for setting up the forms for the foundation, too.

The twins had a well child check the next week and Chloe joined them for an appointment of her own for a case of pink eye that wasn't clearing up.  We were referred to the ophthalmologist and got in later that day.  Messing around with eye infections is a big no-no.  She was put on steroids that day and luckily it cleared up and we have had no further problems.

Date night with these cuties on October 9th.  We went to a local children's theater to see "Cinderella" and "Sleeping Beauty."  Chloe and Lexi loved any reason to put on a cute scarf and bring a purse. :)

We met up with cousins there, too.  So fun!

After the shows, we got to meet the characters.  Both the characters in the plays and all of the Disney princesses.

Leah's favorite was Maleficent.  All of the actors/actresses were children (up to 17 or 18, I believe).  The girl playing Maleficient was a fabulous actress and so fun to watch.

Leah playing soccer!  A full month for all of the kids.

Mitch getting Jocie ready for church on his request, all by himself.

Stopped by our lot one day after church- more excavating had happened.

Sunday dinner with cousin Westie!

Chloe and her love for her baby sisters has been so fun to watch over the years.  She has been fabulous with all of them and the relationship she has with each one of them has been a treasure to watch.  

Jocie started learning how to sit up in October.  We started off with the propping up method, putting pillows and blankets behind her.

We celebrated Mitch's 8th birthday one day early on the 16th.  

Grandma Cynde sent the perfect hat- Go Seahawks!

Ben and I got him his first suit.  He was so excited about this.  He has been wanting one for awhile.  He loves being able to do anything the same as Ben.

With all his new loot!

Grandma and Papa Blakeslee sent him his own hippity hop.  Those have been a bit hit!

Mitch also requested an ice cream cake.  He also wanted mint oreo, but with that one no longer available, his second choice was strawberry cheesecake.

Nana and Papa came to help celebrate.

Aunt Beth also came too!

On his actual birthday, October 17th, Ben and the 4 big kids left early to go deer hunting.  I surprised Mitch with a box of donuts to take with them for a birthday breakfast.

They went hunting with Papa and Uncle Nick, too.

Hunter Orange!

Meanwhile at home, the babies and I had a relaxing day.  Livy was playing on the iPad and kept saying "Yook (look) at me, J-Money, yook at me!"  She wanted Jocie to watch her play the iPad.

Lunch time!

It was a slow day of hunting and they didn't see much, but they did lots of hiking.

This was the best thing the birthday boy could be doing on his special day.  He was so happy!

My little hunters

Ben said the kids loved the binoculars and it was hard to share one pair between the 4 of them.

Leah enjoying some trail mix with her dirty, dirty hands.  All part of the hunting experience!

My crew got home about 7:00 p.m. I had a special breakfast cake ready for Mitch for his special day. Everyone quickly showered before they ate (they were dirty from head to toe) and then after dinner they hit the sack, completely exhausted.  

Mitch is my favorite boy (I love being able to say that!)  He handles having 5 sisters with such grace. He finds plenty to do with all of them and finds lots of common ground.  He loves sports.  His favorite sport is always the sport he is currently playing and has a hard time looking forward to the next sport until he's actually playing it, and then he loves it.  He makes friends easily.  We went to a school event recently and as we walked down the halls, 4 or 5 different kids called out "Hey Mitchell" as we passed.  I felt like he was a celebrity!  He does great in school.  This year he has become a little forgetful and often leaves his homework (and lunchbox) at school instead of bringing it home to do, but it hasn't effected his overall school performance.  He used to be my one kid that kept his bedroom nice and tidy but has slacked off on that recently.  He loves to read and we will often find him sitting in his dark bedroom, well after he is supposed to be asleep, reading a book from the light in the hallway.  He loves to read from magazines and learn anything new that he can.  He still hates getting his hair cut (always has) and prefers to have it a little longer on top because he enjoys styling it.  He only wears jeans and basketball shorts.  He has a pair of sweatpants that he will only wear around the house on the rarest of occasions.  He loves t-shirts and also loves to wear long-sleeved shirts under his t-shirts (which is where Leah got the idea from).  He is such a jokester and goofball.  He loves being silly and making silly noises and sounds.  His new favorite thing is to imitate the funny sounds that Jocie makes and say the sounds back to her to make her smile.  His teacher at school told us that she loves to joke around as well and Mitchell is often the only one who understands or gets her jokes or sarcasm.  She says she will say something funny and gets no response from the class, but can look over at Mitchell and he'll have a grin on his face and she knows that he "got it."  He loves to make us laugh and often does it without meaning to.  Once when Grandma Blakeslee was in town, she told him to please get in his pajamas and no shenanigans.  Mitch replied, "I don't know what that means, but I'm going to go with it!"  His new interest in helping with Jocelyn and Olivia is so heart warming.  Olivia used to only let us or Chloe get her dressed or help her get food, or do anything really, but Mitchell was sweetly persistent with her and she eventually warmed up to him and now lets him help her do things.  I love that he loves being involved in Jocie's care too and has taught himself to become more aware of her needs without being asked or prompted.  Mitchell is constantly throwing or kicking something around, no matter what it is.  He would prefer it be a ball, but he will kick rocks or random toys all over.  When asked to put something away, he will kick it or throw it to where it needs to be.  Mitchell has a tender heart and hates being reprimanded for anything.  He is not much of a yeller and screamer when he's upset, but rather a sulker and tends to take care of his emotions behind closed doors.  He hates being in trouble and making mistakes.  He loves to eat and I'm sure will be the reason our grocery bill goes through the roof in a few years.  As much as he likes food, he is a very slow eater and will often just be starting on a meal by the time everyone else is done.  When we have to eat quickly to get to a game or practice or appointment, he struggles with being able to do that.  He still shows lots of interest in learning to cook and bake.  He sees Chloe doing it more and more and wants to do more of it on his own as well.  He would rather eat something mediocre that he has "cooked" than something delicious and fancy that is cooked for him.  His specialty is eggs and omelets and Top Ramen.  He is an excellent speller and has nice penmanship, and is a great reader.  He shows in interest in anything that Ben enjoys doing (fishing, hunting, camping, etc).  If Ben is doing it or wearing it, Mitch wants in on it. If Ben says something is true or cool, Mitch doesn't hesitate to believe it or copy it.  Life without Mitchell wouldn't be as funny or active.  We are so excited for him to be 8 and continue to watch him and love on him!


SuburbiaMom said...

Cute October wrap-up! Miss you and your wonderful family!!!