Saturday, May 31, 2014

Paperwork Procrastinator

What six months of two girls' schoolwork looks like.  Hopefully I will never wait this long to sort through their stuff again!

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Flight Delays

Our flight from Providence to Baltimore was delayed three hours due to severe weather in the Baltimore area.  We didn't get to our friends' house in Germantown until 2:15 a.m.

Then we experienced four and a half days of gloriously beautiful weather while visiting friends around Germantown.  It was picture-perfect.  Sunny, low humidity, highs around 80 degrees.

Guess what?  Our flight from Baltimore to Providence was also delayed three hours due to severe weather in the Baltimore area.  Thank goodness Julia's Dramamine lasts for six hours because we needed a larger window for travelling during this trip.

Maryland Trip - Day 5: Sugarloaf Mountain

Since our Maryland friends were back at work and school today, we girls decided to hike our favorite Maryland mountain - Sugarloaf.
 Evelyn found this crawly critter along the path.  It was pretty sizable, but we have no idea what kind of caterpillar it was.
 Since it was a weekday morning, we were the only ones at the summit of Sugarloaf Mountain the entire 45 minutes we were there.
 Both Julia and Evelyn found favorite places to have their picture taken.  Julia opted for this rock, overlooking the Maryland landscape.
 And Evelyn searched and searched for her rock window, which is pretty cool.

Monday, May 26, 2014

Maryland Trip - Day 4: Chillin' with the Higgins Family

Today we hung out with our host family - the Higgins.  After lunch we went to the pool.  The weather was perfect for swimming, sunny and hot, but not too humid.  Evelyn especially enjoyed jumping off the diving board.
 After the pool, we got all four girls to take some pictures.  In this one, they were told to dog-pile on Evelyn.  She was a good sport and took it well.
 We miss these Maryland buddies, and we're so glad we got to spend some quality time with them!

Sunday, May 25, 2014

Maryland Trip - Day 3

The main reason we visited Maryland this particular weekend:  Julia's friend's birthday party.  Julia was stumped a few weeks ago, when she got an invitation to Jaxson's party.  "Why would he send me an invitation to his birthday party?" Julia asked, as she tossed the invite onto the kitchen counter.  I knew . . . because she would be there!  These two were in two years of preschool together, and they get along so well.  They write each other letters (I'm sure parental deciphering occurs on both ends).  He visited us with his family last summer, and it was wonderful for the two of them to be together once again, even if it was for only a couple of hours.
After attending Jaxson's party, we took the scenic route back to Germantown, passing (purposely) through Point of Rocks.  This is one of Evelyn's favorite Maryland railfanning places, so we stopped to see if anything was going on.
There were a couple of other railfanners - with train radios - wandering around the station.  That's always a good sign.  Sure enough, after waiting about half an hour, a CSX coal train with 120 cars came rumbling through.  The girls were so excited to see a freight train!
After the train passed through the station, Evelyn took the creative way back to the parking lot.

Saturday, May 24, 2014

Maryland Trip - Day 2

This afternoon Julia and I headed back to the friend's house where Evelyn had spent the night, where we had lunch and the girls played with all of the kids in that family.  As with everyone we visited, we all had a great time visiting, just like old times.

What happens in Maryland on the Saturday before Memorial Day?  The pools open!  Thankfully the weather was sunny and somewhat warm, which helped make the water bearable for the girls (not me).
 We had so much fun at the pool, and even more fun back at that family's house for dinner and a movie.  All too soon, it was time to leave and go to bed.  But we are so thankful for being able to play with those that are so special to us.

Friday, May 23, 2014

Maryland Trip - Day 1

We didn't get to our friend's house in Germantown until 2:15 a.m., but that didn't stop us girls from visiting as many places and people as possible.  Our first stop was Julia's former preschool.  We had been told to arrive around 11:00, which was when the kids were eating popsicles and playing on the playground.  Julia saw both of her ELF School teachers and gave them award-winning hugs and smiles.  She also got to play with some friends who hadn't moved on to Kindergarten, yet.  All in all, a very positive experience for Julia.
 We girls ate a light lunch so we would have room for Sweet Frog frozen yogurt (a Maryland favorite for us).  Then Julia had a playdate with two of her little friends while Evelyn played at one of her friend's houses.  Next stop was Chick Fil-A for supper, and then Evelyn was off to yet another friend's house for a surprise sleepover - that friend had no idea Evelyn was coming over!  Surprises for everyone!

Thursday, May 22, 2014

Big Travel Surprise

See these bags?  They contain a couple months of planning a surprise trip for the girls.  I packed them this morning while the girls were at school.  Then I hid them in the back of the Pilot, underneath all of the soccer gear.  Once the girls got home from school, it was business as usual - ballet for both of them, followed by pajamas.
 But!  After they had their pajamas on, I told Julia and Evelyn that we were going to Maryland for the weekend.  Julia saw nothing wrong with jumping for joy on the furniture.  :)
 Due to severe thunderstorms in the Baltimore area (the airport we were flying into), our flight was delayed three hours.  But the girls were still excited about the unexpected adventurous weekend ahead of them.

Monday, May 19, 2014

Time for Flowers (Finally!)

With the threat of a freeze gone, it's time to plant flowers . . . finally!  I bought a variety of annuals this morning, and Julia helped me plant them this afternoon.  She and I had to dodge some short-term rain showers, but we managed to get everything in the ground.  Now we'll wait and see if I estimated the amount of sun (and shade) correctly in various areas of the yard.  Hope so!

Sunday, May 18, 2014

Julia's Show

Julia's ballet recital was this afternoon, with her class of spiders performing a "Little Miss Muffett" story.  It was so cute, watching the little spiders dance around.  Julia really got into character - she was frowning and being as scary as possible.
 Watching Julia on stage this year was a delight.  You could tell she also enjoyed being on stage.
 What to do when the recital was done at 3:00?  Get ice cream, of course!

Saturday, May 17, 2014

Evelyn's Night

Tonight was Evelyn's ballet recital.  She couldn't wait to get on stage and perform to the song, "I Feel Pretty."  Naturally, I think she did a wonderful job.  She remembered her choreography (which has been a problem in the past), her beaming smile matched the mood of the dance and she looked fabulously graceful.
 Evelyn only performed once tonight.  But it was well worth the wait for us to see her.  Good job, Evelyn!

Friday, May 16, 2014

Julia's Class Field Trip to the Zoo

Today was a big day for Julia's Kindergarten class - zoo field trip!  Here's our little Sunshine, ready to board the bus.
 We went to Soutwick's Zoo, which was about a 35-minute drive from Julia's school.  There was a slight chance of rain in today's forecast, and unfortunately it drizzled (heavily, at times) the entire time we were at the zoo.  Anyway - we managed to make the best of it and walked around, checking out all of the animals.  One of the first animals we saw was this funny white-handed gibbon, sitting on a basketball.  That got the kids laughing!
 Julia is checking out some yaks in the picture below (pretending like the rain isn't bothering her).
 Before lunch, we saw a bird show.  Julia enjoyed watching the birds do various tricks.
 I don't know about Julia, but my favorite part of today's trip was eating lunch . . . because there were picnic tables under a shelter.  Julia seems happy about being out of the rain, too.
 If you look through the drizzle, you might see a couple of zebras -
 I think the kids had fun, despite looking like they had just taken showers.  It was certainly a memorable field trip!

Thursday, May 15, 2014

Ballet Recital Beauties

The girls' ballet recitals are just around the corner, with the dress rehearsal going on tonight.  Before we rushed off to the rehearsal, I snapped a couple of pictures of the girls all dolled up.  Julia's class had spider outfits . . . 
 . . . and Evelyn's class simply had beautiful blue costumes.
 Two little Luster ballerinas, ready for the stage!

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

One Little Gosling

For the past several weeks, we have had a pair of geese hanging out in our backyard, nibbling away at spilled bird seed, as well as grass and weeds.  We figured it would only be a matter of time before we saw babies, and this morning we saw one little yellow gosling.  We hope more babies will visit our backyard soon!

Monday, May 12, 2014

Outdoor Play

This afternoon was finally warm and sunny.  An added bonus for Evelyn was no homework.  Naturally she went outside to play!

Thursday, May 8, 2014

Creativity with Scarves

Our local library lets its patrons check out activity bags.  Julia has her favorites - a cooking set, a set of plastic animals, a rhyming activity.  Yesterday she broadened her horizons and borrowed a bag of colorful scarves.  She can't wait to have picnics with her dolls.  Julia also plans to dress up as various Disney princesses - she has all of the colors necessary for the princesses' outfits.  So creative!

Wednesday, May 7, 2014

Outdoor Homework

Julia's science homework today was making lists of living and nonliving things.  It was a beautiful day, so we took her assignment outside.

Tuesday, May 6, 2014

Evelyn's 10th Birthday

Today was Evelyn's day!  Well, after school and homework (this is a weekday, after all) . . . it was Evelyn's day!  She requested going to a Mexican restaurant for supper.  Not only does Evelyn like the food there, but they also let the birthday kid wear a sombrero while she is being sung to.  Very festive and fun!
 After we got home from supper, Evelyn opened her presents.  Rosie wanted to help, too, of course.
 Evelyn opened the present from Julia first.  Once again, I have to give credit to Julia because she kept this doll outfit a secret from her sister for several weeks.  It's easy to see that Evelyn was thrilled about getting Kit's school skirt outfit.
Evelyn knew, by looking at the size and shape of this box, that there was a doll in this present.  But which one?  You'll see, a couple pictures further down.
 Something else Evelyn had been hoping for was a desk for Kit.  Can you tell she was a little excited about this newest piece of doll furniture?
 Evelyn set up her new doll, Ruthie (aka Kit's best friend), with Kit wearing her new outfit, sitting at her new desk.  She can't wait for her dolls to play with the new doll and accessories.
 The birthday evening came to a close with birthday cake and ice cream.  Happy birthday, Evelyn!  You're a whole decade old, now!

Monday, May 5, 2014

Train Display at the Library

There's a display case at our local library for kids to show off their collections.  Ever since we moved here, the girls have been trying to think of a collection they could display.  I suggested their Thomas trains, and they jumped on it.
 Today was the day the girls set up their collection at the library.  After locking up the case, the girls waved good-bye to their trains and told them to have fun looking at the kids who would be looking at them.