May 31, 2011

oneofeach: summer edition

I often think of a phrase I once read in a book by Emily Watts: "The years fly by, but the days are mighty long."  Truer words were never spoken!  A few days into summer we are finding our groove, and there are a few things about each of the kids I want to remember from this phase of life.

Tyler holds the honor of finishing the first book of the summer...and he has already read two, for a total of 304 pages!  He is delighted to be taking piano lessons and loves the school work he has to complete each day.  Right now he is working on carrying and borrowing in multi-digit addition and subtraction.  Today we enjoyed a delightful journal exercise wherein we held a 15-minute conversation through writing only.  Tyler is struggling to get along with the neighbor kids, however.  He flung a verbal insult at one kid today that he says he got from the scriptures.  It's nice to know our efforts to study God's word are having such a good effect!

Gavin's mischief ebbs and flows, but he has been on a tear this week.  Wow.  There are times when I think he might be outgrowing the terrorize-and-destroy phase, like when he will sit on the couch for half an hour and listen to me read his library books over and over again.  But then, when he sneaks into the backyard and soaks those library books with the garden hose, I'm pretty sure he won't survive until his fourth birthday.  While he was drowning any chance he had of ever possessing his own library card, he also pulled apart our cable line, thus disabling our internet service for the morning.

Zachary has spent the holiday weekend doing chores.  Two weeks ago he used Gavin's new-at-Christmas bicycle helmet to test the law of gravity.  Apparently he wasn't confident that "what goes up must come down," so he hurled the helmet high into the air and watched it crash and splinter on the driveway.  I guess he needed more evidence that the law of choice and accountability still applied at our house, too.  After a two-week grace period, he is now working off the cost of a new helmet for Gavin.  His mean parents pay a pittance for household chores, so earning twenty bucks is taking a while.  Zach also killed Lexi's goldfish today when he chose to handle it with his bare hands.  Anyone who can come up with a good consequence for that one is welcome to offer advice.  In other news, Zach is re-learning the traditional method of multi-digit multiplication this week.  Between the onset of consequence chores, piano lessons, journal assignments, and summer math homework, Zach is struggling to remain cheerful.  Life is tough when you are nine!

Lexi is thrilled to have her brothers home for the summer.  She loves spending time with them.  Tyler is usually happy to push her in the swing or read her a story, much to her delight.  Lexi is still obsessed with water, especially the water that comes from the bathroom sink and the refrigerator door.  Doorknob covers have foiled her escapades a little bit, but she still needs a few clothing changes a day after getting soaked.  (Gavin's discovery of the garden hose contributes to this problem.)  Lexi is still climbing out of her crib, but only after waking up in the morning or after her nap.  It's actually pretty nice!  I'm glad I held off on buying a crib least for now.

Garry had Friday through Tuesday off from work, which has been lovely!  He succumbed to the stomach flu on Saturday but has otherwise been busy catching up on unfinished projects.  The bookshelf has proven to be an ugly beast, full of unexpected delays, but the end is finally in sight.  Likewise, a new set of shelves in the garage have taken a while to construct, but they are finally hung.  He has also made some wonderful dinners for the family during his so-called "vacation."  I think Garry will be relieved to get back to his desk tomorrow morning, but it has been nice having him around.

 {insert non-existent picture of me}

I am adjusting to a new routine with all of the kids at home.  It has been nice to have some focused one-on-one time with Zach and Tyler as we have worked on piano lessons and their school assignments.  Balancing Gavin and Lexi's needs during those times is tough, though.  It would sure be nice if there were two of me!  I hope my health holds out this summer so we can do fun things outside the house as a family.  We are looking forward to park days, a "mom camp" co-op, swimming lessons in July, and the occasional field trip.  I am happy to have made it to the third trimester, too.  Baby gets bigger (and presumably healthier!) every day!
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