Monday, July 26, 2010

Lake Eufala

One of the best things about this house we bought last year is our fabulous neighbors: the "S" family.  They have a little girl a year older than Kelsey, and mom Terri and I have gotten to be great friends.  Terri also has parents that live in a large house that overlooks Lake Eufala.  So when she invited us out for the weekend, the answer had to be yes, right?

About a week or so before we left, Ben discovered he had some deadlines on the day we had planned on going, so he volunteered to stay home and take care of Trixie while the kids and I went with the "S" family.  It's only about a 2 1/2 hour drive there, so it wasn't too bad to go by myself with the kids.  So last Friday, off we went for an "overnighter" at the largest lake in Oklahoma!

One of the highlights of the trip was when Terri's dad took us all out on his pontoon boat for a ride on the lake Saturday morning.

The trip to the marina had to start with feeding the fish and turtles who live there, of course!

Then while we were out on the lake, Terri's dad let Connor drive the boat for a while.

The girls got to joy-ride in the front where most of the water splashes onto the passengers.

And here's a picture of Terri and her daughter, Eva...

At some point the girls noticed that Connor had gotten to drive, so they asked for a turn as well.  First Kelsey...

... and then Olivia.

Most of the time that Olivia drove, Eva snagged the seat by the edge of the boat and stuck her face over the edge so the water could splash in her face.  She's a braver girl than I am, that's for sure!

After a while, Connor's was lulled to sleep - so relaxing!

All in all, it was a great weekend.  Thanks so much for the invite, Terri!

Mystery Melon

Sometime in April or May, I planted a garden.  Kind of.  I never really finished doing all I wanted to do with it, but I do have a number of plants out there growing.  Mostly, I'm excited about the tomatoes since you just can't buy good tomatoes in the store.  Good tomatoes only come from gardens.  However, I also started a bunch of other seeds and planted them as well - cantaloupe, seedless watermelon, green beans, cucumbers, carrots and tomatoes.  The problem is, the day I planted the little sprouted seedlings in the garden, I didn't have a gate up.  So of course some dumb rabbit ate most of my plants, much to my dismay.  However, a few did make it - two of the tomato plants, a green bean plant, and some sort of melon.  I thought it was the cantaloupe, but I couldn't remember exactly what I had planted there.  Then I planted a few more seeds (cucumber and carrot) and I've been getting some goodies out of my garden over the past few weeks.

Well, this cantaloupe plant started growing a few melons.  The bigger they got, the less they looked like cantaloupe.  But they didn't really look like watermelon either, and I didn't use a pollinizer like you're supposed to when planting seedless watermelon, so how could it have been the watermelon?  And they didn't get any BIGGER than a large cantaloupe, so surely it was the cantaloupe, right?

Finally I just couldn't take it anymore.  I picked one of those bad boys for closer inspection.

After both girls got to pose with it (and Connor tried unsuccessfully to lift it), I pulled out the knife and cut it open.  What do you think we saw?  Red, of course!

And apparently, if you DON'T use a pollinizer when you plant seedless watermelons, you get small seeded watermelons.  Who knew?

Monday, July 19, 2010


The biggest thing that has been consuming our time and energy this summer has been softball.  Both of the girls are playing through the YMCA.  We started practicing the week of June 14th and have been going in fits and starts ever since.  We've had so many games rescheduled due to rain or a really, really high heat index that the girls are playing about 3 games per week right now - each!  Add Olivia's practice in to that, and we're consumed with softball 4 out of the 7 days of the week.

Kelsey's team is for girls 6 and under and they play T-ball softball.  There's no keeping score or tracking outs - each team lets all their girls bat once and then it's the next team's turn.  However, the girls have gotten really good at throwing the ball to first and getting the runner out so she doesn't run the bases.

The first night of Kelsey's practice was hilarious.  All the girls chased the ball every time someone hit it, and when the coach was showing them the field, it was like watching the Pied Piper in action.

Kelsey's team has had only one other practice since due to rain and heat.  Which is just fine by us at this point.  We have a pretty good time at the games, though! 

At the beginning of the season all of the girls would chase after the ball every time someone hit it.  By now, most of them have learned that you only go after the ball if it's going to come close to you - and not to fight their teammates for it.  Kelsey, however, is NOT one of those that have learned this lesson.  No matter where she's assigned, she runs for that ball...

And as for Olivia's team, they have been practicing faithfully every week.  She's on a 10 and under team, and it's kid-pitch.  That means the games are... thrilling... sort of.  It usually sounds something like this:

Ball.  Ball.  Ball.  Ball - take your base.  Batter up!  Ball.  Ball.  Strike.  Ball.  Ball - take your base.

I don't think Olivia's been struck out yet.  She has run the bases a number of times and even stolen home a lot, though!   If we didn't bring snacks I don't think any of the younger kids would make it through the games.  And if we didn't bring bug repellent than the mosquitoes that come out at 9:00pm when Olivia has a late game would carry off the children and small dogs.  They are vicious!

However, the girls are having a blast and we're staying hydrated.  That's the most we can ask for, right??

Too Cute for Words

Sunday, July 18, 2010

The "Whale-mester" Begins

I am officially there.  It's the last trimester of what I expect will be my last pregnancy.  I have affectionately dubbed it the "whale-mester" because that's what every pregnant woman feels like at this point: A Whale.

Not that I'm complaining, mind you.

There are a few perks to being this pregnant.

First: At this point I actually look more pregnant than fat.  That is definitely a bonus.

Second: I can no longer easily bend over to pick things up off the floor.  This gives me lots of leverage for getting out of picking up toys, books, and other things that collect on the floors in this house.

Third: Tying my shoes is becoming a problem.  This means I should go shopping for new, comfortable shoes that I can wear every day, right?  Flip-flops just can't cut it for me when I have a lot of walking to do.

And finally... I know in my mind that I'm closer to the end than to the beginning.  The baby is doing the tango on a regular basis and other members of my family are finally able to feel the baby kick, move, and hiccup - which is the fun part of being pregnant.

We're... almost... there.

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Sam Noble Museum

We finally made it!  There's a museum about 45 minutes away in Norman, OK called the Sam Noble Museum of Natural History.  It's maintained by OU and the first Monday of every month is free admission.

When you say "free", I'm usually there.  However, we've had things going on for the last few months on those "first Mondays" and have never been able to make it.  Until now...

Ben had Monday off for Independence Day, so we decided to make it our Family Fun Day for the month.  And since it was raining that morning, our thoughts turned to indoor activities and I remembered Sam Noble's free Mondays!  So off we went to Norman.

There was so much to see, starting with the huge statue of the buffalo out front.

It was hard getting many shots of the kids actually looking at the camera, for some reason...

I did get them to pose next to a huge femur bone, however.

The kids were all amazed at the dinosaur fossils.

We even got Daddy to pose!

Is this not the biggest dinosaur skull you've ever seen?

Actually, according to the Guinness Book of World Records, it is! 

Connor couldn't get enough of everything.

And the girls were almost crushed by a giant mastadon! 
(Think relative of the woolly mammoth.)

Connor tried very hard to find a hand print his size on the walls in the People of Oklahoma exhibit.  Alas, this was our closest fit.

One of our last stops there was the Discovery Room, which features a mammoth tusk, among other things.

It was such a nice visit, and one we'll have to make again!  I didn't even get to see the special History of Chocolate exhibit...  
*sniff sniff*

But we'll be back in August for a field trip with our homeschool group, so I guess I still have something to look forward to.

Mr. Tough Man?

My boy loves guns.  And for the record, we don't even have toy guns in the house.  Yet some days it seems like he turns everything he sees becomes something he can point and shoot with.  When we go to a friend's house who has toy guns, he finds the gun and is then broken-hearted when we have to leave it.  Yet I can't bring myself to buy him his own toy gun yet since I'm not sure he can understand the "we don't point it at people" rule.

He's a tough one, our Connor - ALL BOY.

Or is he?

Yesterday I got him up from his nap, and this is what I saw in his crib...

Isn't it so cute how he put his bears on his pillow and tucked them in??

And then, last night while Ben and I were watching TV and the girls were at a party, Connor was playing with a couple of the girls' toy horses.  After a few minutes he went into the bathroom, got Kelsey's hairbrush, and came out to brush the horses' hair.

Ben was absolutely disgusted.

I laughed.

Yep, that's my tough boy.

P.S. He also plays with Barbie mermaids in the bathtub...