The October Upload

October, October. You came far too quickly! I was not yet ready for fall, but you came and went just the same. Ready or not, here you were.

Let's see here. The first week of October was exciting because Jeff had a tooth extracted (the same one that he got to have a root canal on after being damaged in his bike accident ended up not surviving), and Aylin also came down with a stomach bug the day after Jeff's surgery, plus I had parent teacher conferences that day. So that was fun. Two pitiful sweeties at home, while I ran down to the school to have a chat with Aylin's teacher. It was a great conference, I ended up being the last appointment of the day (and last parent meeting period) and she was quite chatty, so I got to learn lots of fun things about how the Ginger Girl spends her days. As has been par for the course, she adores reading and will read anything and everything she can get her paws on. Her teacher recognizes that she has great potential if Aylin will allow herself to be pushed a bit. So she decided that after the fall break, she was going to bring Aylin and a few other excited readers into a group and begin teaching them how to start doing book reports. Aylin really loves it, and her teacher is very strict in making the children be responsible for their learning. It has been really good for her. She struggled a bit the first week, or so until she got the hang of what her expectations were. Her biggest struggle seems to lie in allowing herself to be actually fully challenged. She has a perfection complex where she wants things to come out right the first time (no idea where that comes from.... *looks around sheepishly*), so sometimes she doesn't even want to try if she thinks there's a possibility that she may fail. Her teacher recognizes this, and holds her to a higher standard as a result. Which is a good thing, but it also causes frustration for Aylin. Learning how to stretch with that has been an interesting process, but I can already see how well the reading group she's been doing the last several weeks has helped advance her.

I experimented with my painting a bit, and my sister Becky gave me the inspiration for a fun piece: my Abstract Peacock. I had a lot of fun making this one, and completely lost myself in it for most of an entire day. I started on it relatively early in the day, mid morning, and didn't realize how late it was until suddenly my phone's alarm went off to remind me to start walking to school to pick up the kiddo. I finally finished it up with a few extra touches about a week later.

Aylin and I made some fun fall decor:

On fall break Aylin and I spent a lot of time at the Park, the Library, and the Amazeum:

Momma got upgraded to an iPhone when my Moto X decided to kick the bucket. And to top off our fun fall break, we decided that while we were in Tulsa (to go to the nearest Apple store) we'd go ahead and make a day of it and go to the Zoo! That was the best decision yet, it was the perfect day to go to the zoo. The temperature was amazing! There wasn't a lot of people there, and we stayed all the way until closing time and got to have our very own personal tour back through the zoo from a friendly security guard on a golf cart. We were at the back of the zoo when it was 10 minutes till close and he offered to drive us back up to the front (mom was very glad for this because by then my feet were tired), and along the way he provided lots of fun commentary, and information about various animals as we drove by. Such fun! Family memories in the making! One of the fun/crazy things was this big brown bear who likes to terrorize children. It was on the other side of a large (THICK thank goodness) glass wall, so the kids would come right up and get close in it's face. It would lay there and act like nothing was going on, just chillin'. Then suddently it would turn it's head and get right in a kid's face and roar and paw at the kid from the other side of the glass. The kids figured out it's tricks though, and kept at it just to get it to try to eat them, and the screams and squeals were epic.

Then of course was Halloween. Aylin finally decided on Eowyn for her costume. We had fun finding something that would fit the bill (thankfully i found something on amazon in a decent price range that would work) and then added accessories to finish it off. I think we pulled it off quite nicely! Aylin also helped with the pumpkin fun. She picked the pumpkins, one we attempted to do melted crayons on (which worked, but didn't work as well as I would have liked) and the other Aylin picked out the pattern that she wanted me to use and I carved it after she scooped out the guts. Aylin had a blast at the school's Halloween Costume Carnival, which is total chaos, and loved by all the kids and endured by the parents. Then we got to go Trick-Or-Treating around the downtown area near our house with friends, which was fun. 4 adults following around 2 little princesses! Jeff even participated a bit (blow me over with a feather!) he wore his kilt, and a sweatshirt.

Well I think that about wraps up October!

The July Upload

We started July in Charlotte with the Leach clan, complete with Fireworks and all kinds of family fun (see Family Trip to Charlotte). But the fun didn't stop there!

Aylin and I explored the children's area at Crystal Bridges, loving the fact that this is 1/2 a mile from our house. Mind you this was before the Amazeum opened which is a whole other ball of wax... Aylin put on puppet shows for me, sketched silhouettes, and created lots of fun things.

We made blackberry shakes, and Aylin created her very own concoction = pb&j balls! The recipe was something she was very intent on doing by herself. It started with a dash of salt, then she ripped up a few pieces of bread. Spoon fulls of peanut butter, jelly, and maybe ever a bit of honey... then it was all carefully mixed together and balled up. Next you put it in the freezer for a few minutes, and the Voila! PB&J Balls! She was so in love with her recipe that the next day while I was mowing the lawn she decided to make it again without supervision. There was at least one fully failed attempt that I later found in the trash during that time.

Next we finally got to play at the AMAZEUM! We will probably be spending every spare moment at this place, and likely will lose track of many hours at a time... Thank God they serve coffee in the cafe. Someone had momma's in mind when they chose those menu options!

We also spent a day going to the Walmart Museum on the square in an effort to get out of the house, but stay out of the heat. So we killed a lot of time in the museum and their fun little gift shop filled with lots of old time toys. While at the Walmart Museum we got barcoded, Aylin, me, and her hippo that tagged along...

We played on the square some more. Aylin lost her 2nd tooth. She also got to meet Elsa, Ariel, and Belle on the Bentonville square!

Aylin got to meet her First Grade teacher at meet the Teacher night, and explore her new classroom for the upcoming school year.

Aylin learned how to make loom band bracelets, and we found that it's actually easier to make them without the loom, than with. Either using your fingers, or use a set of pencils with an eraser placed between them and tape everything together. Now we have little colored rubber bands everywhere!

Last, but certainly not least; Jeff had his bicycle accident. I'm sure you'll hear him tell the story at some point, but he basically lost control of his bike while riding along the trail around lake Fayetteville on his lunch break. He says he got going too fast, and hit a wet area while going around a corner and low sided. He rolled, and his bike also rolled. Into him. Serveral times. He ended up with no broken bones, but got hit in the face with the handlebars breaking his top two middle teeth. One tooth is chipped, and the other tooth looks like a spiders web from under an x-ray and is completely dead. There will need to be at least one root canal and crown, it is undecided yet as to whether both teeth will need root canals/crowns. He also got 7 stitches under his chin. Both of his wrists and hands were sprained and swollen for quite some time. His neck, arms and back were also stiff and sore like he'd jammed the entire upper half of his body. He still, almost 3 weeks later, has some soreness and stiffness in his hands and face. His dentist told him he was very lucky he hadn't dislocated his jaw with the amount of impact he sustained. I'm just thankful the damage isn't worse, and that ultimately he walked away from it without any major damage that can't be repaired. He was wearing a helmet and gloves, and both of those were beat up/torn up in the process of the wreck. Both are a testament to how bad the damage could have been. Ironically the bike is fine. The plastic end plugs on the handlebars are broke or missing, and the foam around the handles were scuffed up. But otherwise the bike is just fine.