Saturday, July 4, 2015

Attack of the Chiggers - Captain's Log, Week 271

Happy Independence Day! I am so glad that I was lucky enough to be born in this country. Thank you to all those who have served us to keep us safe.

What the girls said this week

Zelda: "I gotch-you! I so funny."

We were listening in the car to "Let it Be" by the Beatles. Ellie heard it, and said: "Let it be? What?! It's Let it Go!"

What we did this week

Okay, this is actually something from a couple weeks ago. In Jason's PA class they had to make videos a while ago explaining the necessity of doing a certain procedure and demonstrating how to do it. Jason's video was really good and really funny. A couple weeks ago they held a mini-Oscars in their class and watched all the videos, and Jason's won "Best Picture." :)

I think Ellie just had a growth spurt; she looks a couple inches taller to me than before. She's continuing to learn and grow; she's getting really good at reading short words. She also loves imaginative play; one of her favorites is to have "creature powers" (from the show Wild Kratts) and run around the house saving imaginary people and animals.

Something Ellie did.
Zelda loves dress up. She'll bring us clothes from the dress up bag all the time, wanting us to help her put them on. And other times she'll be walking around, having dressed herself up:

Zelda also loves baby dolls. They're one of her favorite toys to play with, and she'll carry them all around and take care of them. This one she "decorated" very carefully with stickers this week:

Something super cute Zelda's started to say is "I gotch-you!" She'll run toward us and grab out legs and then yell, "I gotch-you!" She also likes to run around in circles or run down the hall and then tell us, "I so fast! I so fast!"

I've been reading more about Spain and Portugal this week. We leave in three weeks! That's just crazy. I am sooo excited. I even pulled the suitcase down out of the attic this week to start packing some things. Squee!

So, on to things the whole family did this week:

Ellie, Zelda, and I all got multiple chigger bites. I have decided that I hate chiggers. They're my new least favorite insect.

We got a shade canopy for the back deck. We've been talking about it for a little while, because the girls love to play out there but the wood gets so hot in the middle of the day with the summer sun. Jason went to Walmart after classes one day this week, and brought home a shade canopy. It's great! Here's the girls having a picnic under it the first day we got it.

Then we went hiking at Raven Rock State Park yesterday, and it was sooo fun. Jason had the day off of school, so we took the girls out pretty early (I think we got there at about 8:30 or 9) and did the two mile loop trail out to Raven Rock. 

The girls had a blast. They were so excited that they were running down the trail when we first got there. The forest was absolutely gorgeous, and it was a perfect temperature for walking.

Close to the start of our walk, Ellie pointed at a sign next to a tree along that pathway (that said something like, "Welcome to Raven Rock State Park." Ellie: "Look what it says! It says it's a perfect tree for birds."

We walked down a cool staircase to get down to the rock. It reminded me of the Swiss Family Robinson or Tom Sawyer's Island at Disneyland.

The girls found some earthworms coming out of the ground.
While we were down exploring by the rock it started to rain. And not just a little. A lot. It was pouring. And we knew from having looked at the weather report that morning that once it started to rain, it was going to rain all day. So, there was no point in trying to wait it out before walking back the mile and a half to the car. Luckily, it was a warm rain, but we were all going to look like we jumped in a swimming pool.

This is what walking back looked like at first:

Soon Zelda let me take her, though, and Ellie discovered that she could splash in all the puddles forming a long the trail. She loved that, and that kept her occupied for about a half mile until we reached the overlook.

Jason carried Ellie the rest of the way to the car and I carried Zelda.

It was such a fun outing and Jason and I were both really glad we did it.

Later yesterday, we went to the Fuquay 4th of July celebration (yes, they had it on the 3rd). It was held in a big park in Fuquay and they had all sorts of inflatable bounce houses and obstacle courses for the kids. Ellie did three different bounce house things, and then Ellie and Zelda both rode in this fish ride (which they loved).

They closed down all the rides at 9 o'clock so that they could do fireworks at 9:15. We were wondering how Zelda would do with the fireworks this year since she doesn't like loud noises, but she did great! Both girls really enjoyed the firework show.

We think we're going to take today easy and stay at home, since Jason and I are both kind of exhausted from yesterday.  We have some neighbors down the street that we think will do fireworks, so we might walk the girls down there to watch.

Happy 4th of July!!

Friday, June 26, 2015

Jason's New Blog - Captain's Log, Week 270

What the girls said this week

Zelda: Holds a picture of an orangutan out to me. "Wook! A wabbat! A wabbat!"
Me: "A rabbit?"
Zelda: "No! A wabbat! A wabbat!"
Me: "A wabbat?"
Zelda: "U-huh."

Ellie, coloring: "This is me as a baby. And I didn't hatch out of your tummy because I'm too big, see? Hahaha. I hatched out of the egg in a bird's nest."

What we did this week

We're coming up on our year anniversary of living here in North Carolina, so this week I've been kind of doing a deep clean of the house and purging stuff we don't need. I've also been planning more for our Spain trip and listening to Don Quixote via Librivox. Jason's had various school things (a site visit, an OSCE, a test, a sim, a guest speaker, etc). And the girls have played a lot!

One cool thing Jason did this week was start a new blog to feature the girls' art work and stories, called The Many Adventures of Ellie and Zelda. He's going to post all of their stories and art work there. I'll probably do a monthly post on this blog featuring highlights from what he's posted there.

On Monday Zelda helped me do this dishes:

She also requested to wear the "Snow White" tutu, and we couldn't resist putting on the cape too and giving her an apple.

On Tuesday Ellie put all of the couch and bed pillows on the family room floor, and told me that she made "the biggest sleepover ever!"

Jason got home from school really early that day, so we took the girls up to the kids museum in Raleigh. Ever since we went with my dad and stepmom when they were in town, Ellie's been asking me to go again. And we did, and they had so much fun.

They had some kinetic sand out this time, which was really fun to play with. I definitely got my own tray and was playing with it. Ellie and Zelda put a bunch of animals in theirs and used the little stamps on the table to make animal tracks.

When we got home later that day, they took pictures together using the camera on my mac.

They've been pulling the couch cushions off a lot this week and making towers. It's been okay, mostly, but Ellie fell off one time and yet hasn't seemed to learn from that experience. Most of the time they have pretty good balance.

Yesterday the weather finally cooled off a little (thanks to a morning thunderstorm), so the girls and I went on a walk and Jason went on a run. We had a big electrical storm last night (lots of lightning and flashes and rolling thunder) and even some hail. The weather's supposed to dip back down into the high 80's in the next couple of days, and we're excited about that.

And that was our week!

Wednesday, June 24, 2015


Later this summer Jason and I have the awesome opportunity of being able to go to Spain. My dad is taking us, along with my brother and sister and their spouses (and my brother's children).

We are so excited. We're going to visit Barcelona, Madrid, Seville, Gibraltar, and more, and even swing over to Lisbon, Portugal. We'll be going right after Jason's summer semester ends at the end of July, and coming back before his clinicals begin the second week of August.

My mom is going to fly out to North Carolina before we leave, to stay with and watch the girls while we're gone.

aljaferia9 by Angel on Flickr

I know I already said this, but WE ARE SO EXCITED!

Monday, June 22, 2015

Endless loads of laundry - Captain's Log, Week 269

What the girls said this week

The day after I broke the bookshelf in me and Jason's bedroom and gashed my ankle (see story below), I showed Ellie and told her I accidentally broke the bookshelf. She stared at it for a minute, then turned to me and said seriously, "I forgive you."

Ellie: "Mom, I'm feeling crapitooded. Crapitooded means the opposite of frustrated."

What we did this week

Last Saturday (the 13th) we drove down to Campbell campus to play frisbee golf on their course. Jason discovered the frisbee golf course a little while ago when he was running around their cross-country paths, and we've been wanting to go ever since. The weather this week has been super hot, but the whole course is in the woods so it's nice and shaded. That helped a lot when we were playing, although we were all pretty hot and sweaty by the end.

The girls both had so much fun. Ellie was really into it; some of her throws were really good frisbee form, but most of them were kind of chucking the frisbee forward. Either way, she had a great time.

Zelda walked right up to each of the baskets and plunked her frisbee down inside. She found the easy way to get a good score. :)

We skipped a couple baskets because it was so hot, so we ended up playing like twelve holes. Jason definitely won.

Later that night, I gashed my ankle open. Jason and I had been watching Property Brothers, and on the show they talked about smoke detectors. Which reminded us that we needed to replace two of our smoke detectors, and we decided to just order them off Amazon real quick. Jason asked if I could see the brand name on our detectors, and I hopped up on a bookshelf to get a better look at the one in our bedroom. The bookshelf was one of the kind made out of particle board, and as I put my weight on the top shelf, it broke. I came falling down, and as I did so, a screw sticking out of the broken top shelf gashed my ankle in an arc.  

Jason and I looked at it and decided I should go in to see if it needed to be stitched up. So 11 o'clock on Saturday night I drove myself down to the ER and got 13 stitches. It wasn't too bad; I got to watch The Hunger Games while I waited, and the nurse assistant guy was funny. 

It's been healing well all week; I had Jason take out a couple stitches a few days ago because they were too tight at one end, and then he took out the rest of them yesterday. 

A few more pictures from this week:

Ellie put on this hat when we were getting ready to go to the library, and told me she was "all ready to go."

Zelda painting one day: 

And here are a couple videos (mostly for the grandparents, but the first one is really funny):

I'm struggling to remember what else we did this week. Jason's been going on "site visits" this semester, which means that once a week he goes to some real medical place and helps out. Last week his visit was up in Apex. Then on Saturday he had a "mass casualty drill" up at school. They practiced what they would do if they were somewhere where there was a sudden emergency with a lot of people injured.

Zelda's two favorite shows are Daniel Tiger and Team Umizoomi; if she ever wants to watch them she'll ask for "Danieuw" or "Sumi." When watching Umizoomi, if they ask questions (like, "Do you see the rabbit over here?") she'll answer. It's been fun to see her suddenly become interactive with the questions they're asking. She's also still really into the potty and has actually tried to go in it a couple times.

The weather this last week was brutal, and we pretty much hid inside all week because of it. We're talking high 90's and low 100's with very high humidity. 

Oh! One fun thing we did was go to Ellie's friend Mark's house (their whole family are our friends from church) for a summer water party. They had some little pools set up and a sprinkler and a trampoline and a sand box, and the girls played with their friends and had a good time. Later that same day, Ellie had a dentist appointment. Her teeth look great! She's got that same one that's a little off-color from some kind of trauma, but it hasn't changed (for better or worse) since last time, so at least it's stable.

We also made playdough twice this week (thrilling, I know), and I made like three batches of blueberry muffins (I had a craving. A big craving.).

Ohhhhh, I just remembered what I was doing all week. Laundry. Lots and lots of laundry. Ellie's made the switch to underwear at night time, and while some mornings she's woken up dry, most mornings result in a lot of laundry just waiting for me to tackle. It's been kind of exhausting, actually. The most time consuming part of it is washing the waterproof pad that protects her mattress; I have to dry it on "air fluff" (no heat) or it will lose its absorbent properties, and that takes forever. 

And yesterday was Father's Day! I am so lucky both to have a wonderful father and a husband who is a wonderful father to our girls. I love them both so much. Happy Father's Day!