Monday, December 28, 2009

my vacation time...

Every year around Christmas when the girls are out for winter break, I close the daycare for a week (or so depending on how the holidays fall) so we can spend time as a family with our kids.

However... the week always turns into doing some type of house project or something we have put off doing and this year is no different.

Christmas Day I cleaned up the house, put all the kids' stuff away, and we even took decorations down so I could do this...
This is everything from my daycare closet/Mia's closet in my room. What a mess! We are doing our famous room switch to make room for Baby Kendal. Mia and Kendal are now going to share what used to be our bedroom and Dustin and I are moving back to the small room in which we started in when we first moved into our house 4 years ago.

This is all of my art supplies, motor boxes, and gadgets I use for daycare...
After a couple of hours of moving and switching... here is the new daycare/baby/toddler room closet. Not all finished but getting there.
Vacation time has not been all about switching rooms... I got a portable crib for Kendal (she'll be in our room until she and Mia can sleep all through the night or at least enough to not wake each other up), bought a couple new born outfits for her, and took care of a sick, sick Gaby!!! If everyone is up and feeling well, on Wednesday we are looking forward to eating lunch at our favorite family restaurant, Hu Hot then seeing the new Alvin and the chipmunk movie. Praying everyone is well soon.

Tonight, out of the blue, Gaby started throwing up and having diarrhea... poor girl. She normally does not get sick with the stomach junk very easily but she got it hard tonight! Since her room is downstairs and we are up, Dustin brought her mattress up stairs, lined it with trash bags, and a barf bowl near by so if she gets sick (crossing my fingers she doesn't), we are close.
3 hours of throwing up, heating pad, and 4 hot baths later... I think she may be out for a while. She is just lifeless!!!

And that is how I am spending my vacation...

Christmas Randoms...

We normally celebrate on Christmas Eve(and we did with family)... But this year we had the girls wait until Christmas morning so we could enjoy watching them open mom and dad gifts. A new tradition.

Even though we were in a blizzard watch Christmas Eve night, my brother & family and my grandma & dad all made it from KC safe and sound to celebrate Christmas.

Gaby asked for 100 pieces of Turkey Jerky on her Christmas list... Papa and Grammy got her 2 huge bags full of it. She was a happy lil' girl.
Gaby and Dustin shared a Christmas gift this year... Tony Hawk Ride for the Wii. It was funny to listen to an 8 year old trash talk her old man.

We had 3 Christmas celebrations this year... the weekend before at Dustin's mom's house, Christmas Eve at our place with my family, and Christmas Day at Dustin's dad's house.

The girls got a karaoke machine and when no one is looking they bust a gut signing into the mic.

Gaby got a scooter from Dustin and I. The entire day was spent yelling between Gaby and Kadyn because K wanted to ride her scooter so much. So, even though Kadyn had lots of wonderful "stuff", we allowed her to use her Christmas money and buy a scooter the next day just so the fighting would stop.

Christmas Eve night Kadyn and my niece Reese played with naked Barbie's in Kadyn's new Barbie pool.
Dustin and I exchanged gifts before Christmas... he got an Iphone and I got an Edward Barbie doll. Then on Christmas morning under the tree, I had a digital frame flipping through 7 years of pictures. What a treat to see! It is my favorite!

The kids got way too much stuff...

It was a fun time watching Mia get into "unwrapping" gifts this year. She would rip the packages and throw the wrapping paper! Her new saying of the season is/was, "I want that" taught to her by the kids in my daycare.
The entire Christmas week, we ate, ate, and ate! On the eve, we had shrimp, little BBQ hotdogs, chips and cheese dip, cookies, sweets, meats and cheeses, sandwich tray, and snack mixes. It was so yummy!!!

Until Next Year!!!

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Looking back on 2009

And what a year it has been. I can openly say I am ready to put the year behind me and start anew!

2009 started out with Dustin loosing his job. This left us with one income, no health insurance, and did I mention one income??? This was a crazy and emotional time for us as a family! Even today as I think back to those 6 months, I still don't know how we made it through, but some how God did.

We had our ups and downs but believe it or not, Dustin being out of work made me realize what a hard working, responsible, loving, and provider of a husband I really do have. He took up odd computer jobs, part time work folding boxes, and then went to a part time computer job he stayed until we had an answer to prayers. A full time job with benefits. God is good! Even when I was frustrated, in tears, and upset at why loosing his job had happened, Dustin never was. He was a rock.

With the loss of his job came challenges. Finding health care for Gaby, Kadyn, and Mia, staying positive, telling people everything was fine when I really wanted to break down, and being humbled. Through these challenges Dustin and I grew stronger. As husband and wife, as best friends, and in believers in Christ.

2009 also through us some curve balls. The day Dustin accepted his full time job, I was feeling sick. I believed it to be nerves as he was starting a new adventure. Three days later, I knew it wasn't nerves but I was pregnant. (I told you Dustin and I grew stronger as husband and wife). Talk about shock... I had it in my heart that Mia would be our last baby. But no, we will be adding baby girl Kendal in less then 7 weeks. There are days I look at my perfect, never talking back, always looking their best children and think, "how is another child going to fit into all of this madness? I mean perfectness?". But as we did a lot this year, we will put it in God's hands as he knows how we will adjust, make room, and provide for our growing family!

Just a month ago- I learned another huge and important life lesson that cost my family some money. It was something I had overlooked and actually didn't know about. I should have been more aggressive when I did find out about it and when it came to handling the situation but instead I avoided it. I guess I thought it would go away. I still don't want to share details as I have only told one close friend. No worries, the situation is behind me (I didn't break any laws or kill anyone and cover it up) and I have learned another lesson and I can't hide from things even when I really want to!

Looking back on this year a lot has changed. Relationships and friendships have changed. Some for the better and some for the worse. I have changed. I want to be a better wife, mother, daughter, and daycare provider. I want to set an example of for my daughters as well. I want to continue to live a life that is well balanced and most of all I want to start this upcoming year fresh and with no regrets.

I hate making goals... I never follow through with them but I still have some, I guess, goals for the new year.
*continue to work out- I took a couple months off as I wasn't feeling good and we were super busy with kids activities. I am back to working out 3 times a week. Once Kendal is born I hope to get back to 4-5 times. I would like to do more, but I am staying real here!
* have house projects finished by Feb. We are moving kids' rooms around, daycare things around, adding a outside/inside rec type of a room and getting a new dinning room table that will fit a family of 6 around it!
*finish up 2 programs I am enrolled in for daycare.
* continue my commitment as an Awana leader at church even when Kendal is born as I get such motivation from the kids that attend this program.
* make a date night for Dustin and I monthly.
* make a scarp booking night for me monthly.

Looking back at 2009... we are a stronger family because of all the events, not done nor closed to finished living life and nor learning from it. So, I guess in the long run, 2009 has had to happen for a reason. Cheers to a new year and with God's help starting it off right!

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

PGD Christmas Party...

The morning started off with Kadyn in her PJ's decorating her cupcakes for her preschool class... I should have known when she ate a cupcake for breakfast it would be a crazy day. And is was, but we had fun!

All the Peanuts... getting our party started!

We started out by eating- everyone brought their favorite snack to share. We had so much food- so we are using a couple of snacks for lunch and this afternoon!

Then we discussed what everyone brought... huge topic of conversation for us.

Little A exploring her gift... by the time we started our party, she was so tired but still managed to pull her tissue paper out.

All the gifts were hand out and they were ready to go...

Here they are in action... finding out what they got! It took all about 1 minute before everything was unwrapped and everyone was showing off their toy.

The older girls got Strawberry Shortcake and Pet Shop goodies...

My boys got Batman Helicopters/shooter things...
my younger girls got a sorting game...
And my youngest got a shape blender toy, which Kadyn referred to it as a "coffee toy" aka Dustin coffee grinder.

The rest of the morning was spent flying and capturing bad people and playing with dollies and pets...
When we were ready for lunch we played a Christmas game. "Let's see who can pick up the most wrapping paper". They were all winners!!!

I even had a cute art project ready to go but spaced it out until after the gifts were handed out. At that point everyone was having too much fun to try to get them to sit and do a craft. So we played. And the craft still sits.

Merry Christmas from the Peanut Gallery Daycare!

Friday, December 18, 2009

Have you been naughty or nice???

We'll find out on Tuesday at our daycare party... I am so happy and relieved that my monster of a daycare project I started is now finished, wrapped up, and ready for new homes!!!

Hope you can wait until then... I know I can't!!!
Isn't this just the cutest gift ever? One of my lil cubbie friends gave this to me on Wednesday! I couldn't help put post a picture... it just makes me smile!!!

Awana's Christmas Party...

was on Wednesday night. We had a birthday party for Jesus. Our little Cubbies had songs and bible verses prepared for all of the moms and dads.

This is our first year with the Awana program but Kadyn and Gaby both love it!
Here is KK before our Cubbie party starts.
Kadyn and Lil P are in my "red group". They are the cutest friends!
Each group has a turn in singing 3 songs and 3 verses. Here is our red group in action. On average there are 20+ kids each Wednesday night in my group and 3 leaders total. They did an awesome job!
After the program... me and my blueberry outfit, my little Cubbie, and the hubby!

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

My daycare kids are in love with Kidz Bop Christmas CD. Daily, we get our musical toys out and start dancing and singing. That is where I get to hear Kadyn sing, "We wish you a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Ear". But instead of dancing, this morning they just walked in a circle... over and over while 10 holiday songs played. Hmmmm. I don't know! I just know they loved to do it!

Then one of their friends laid down, they just walked over him without missing a beat! So... here is our circle dancing???
Today we practiced writing our names, something we have been doing since middle of August. We put our names on top of stockings in hopes that Santa will will fill them!

Let me just say... I am so proud of my little kids! They are all 3-5 years and almost all can write their names without help. Today's activity was a great way to see how much they have come in a short time! I know they are not perfect by any means but the letters are there, they are in name order, and they look great!
Our art project... we painted winter mitten ornaments (during).
Our winter ornaments (after).
So, Dustin got his Christmas gift early this year...

He has wanted an Iphone for forever. We have never had the right phone carrier to make this happen. Dustin has kept dropping hints like, "none of our phone are under contract any more". And, "If I had this phone, I could look that up". So, I kinda knew what family plan we had and what we needed in order to make this happen.
Last week, I called At&t and was on the phone for over an hour. I was still on the phone when he got home from work. All he heard was me giving my information, debit card info., and agreeing.
So, because of everything he heard, I had to spill the beans on his gift so help reassure him I wasn't posting bail bond or something else crazy!
So, here is my happy hubby on the day his phone came in...

Last Saturday while Kadyn and Gaby were at Cinderella, Dustin and I had a gift wrapping party... Everything is wrapped and ready to go. We had to stuff a lot in the back so daycare kids and Mia wouldn't mess with them... so far so good! I love our tree!

We were able to get a lot done when Mia was sleeping but when she woke up, she wanted to help too. She loved the paper!

This was taken this morning... in my new jeans, almost 32 weeks and a really bad hair day!

Last night we had some errands to run and Dustin was meeting us out on the west side from work. The kids and I started out at Target. We walked in, Mia and Kadyn are in a cart and Gaby is walking nicely beside me. We stopped and got snacks at the snack area because it just helps to make it through Target without any meltdowns.
Because they were acting good, I went to look at jeans that would stay up, not fall down when I would walk, and were reasonable in price. I found my size and took my cart to try them on. Dustin still wasn't there yet so I had a cart full of kids and snacks and needed to try the jeans. I told the lady I needed to try one item on, she replies, "you can't take them in there in the cart". I replied, " I can't leave them out here and they can't get out at the moment with the food". She then comes back with, "it's a fire hazard". I THEN came back with, " I'll take that big room right there, the cart will go with me and if there is a fire in the next 5 minutes while I am trying these on, I won't be in anyone's way". She continues to talk, and that point, I am loosing it. I then replied to her, " Just call your manager and by the time I am done trying these on she'll be here and I will talk to her". I then grabbed my cart, my many children, their food, and went into the dressing room and tried these jeans on.
I almost wanted them not to fit so I would have a reason not to buy them, but they did... and they look good! When we left (3 minutes later) there was 3 Target employee's there but none said a word to I handed in my number and left... buying the jeans.

Normally I am a rule follower. But anyone could see that I was not going to get everyone in the dressing room unless they were sitting in the cart. I was frustrated and the night went downhill from there... I totally blame Target! But... I bought my jeans, stuff for the girls' school parties, and now I don't have to go back for a long while which might not be a bad thing for me or my budget!

Friday, December 11, 2009

Wrapping up the week... random, random, random!

I must admit that I was not disappointed that some of activities were canceled and we stayed at home for 3 straight nights. We weren't even that productive in getting things done for the holidays but we enjoyed the time at home and even the snow day on Wednesday.

Even though I learned a huge, massive, never gonna do it again, life lesson... I am thankful that I am in position that life lessons can happen and I can learn from them. So, I guess while I am still festering over it, I am blessed I am learning from it.

I had never been so excited to open a medical bill and see the part that says, "insurance paid...". I sure haven't seen that in a while and it brought me to tears this week as I saw our new insurance policy is kicking in, no questions asked, and so far has been a smooth transition.

I am a proud parent... my oldest baby had her second grade winter concert this week and she sung her heart out! She looked stunning in her holiday gear and she beamed the entire night as she knew it was her night. Gaby has been practicing for the concert for weeks and they had to memorize over 8 songs. I am also a sappy parent. There are times I was watching my little girl on stage and I would tear up for the fact she is growing up. Where have the last 8 years of her life gone? And, what did Dustin and I do before we had her to wrap our life around? I love that she is older and I am experiencing things for the first time with her, but I sure do wish it would slow down a little!

I am done with Christmas shopping... and have been for a while. Dustin and I were able to take a day while grandparents watched the kids and knock out our lists. Well. They are bought and nothing else. So, I am excited that Poppi and Amy are taking the oldest girls to see a musical tomorrow afternoon so I can play Christmas elf and wrap, wrap, and wrap. I even ordered Dustin's gift online this week, and that evening manged to spill the beans to him on what I had gotten! All I can report is that , "I done good".

There are several things that continue to be on my plate for daycare... I have finished up paperwork for a program and while still working on a grant program along with a daycare inspection that could still happen any day! I am excited for these projects that are on my plate and grateful that I am able to participate in them. At the same time, I sometimes feel like I am hoop jumping. But, after it is all said and done, I will be excited to show off my master plans that are in the works!

Just a lot of randoms, checking in, reporting on my week. Nothing too important but wow, I think I could ramble on forever like it was!!! I hope everyone is getting into the holiday spirit since it is just around the corner!!!

Thursday, December 10, 2009

"Run, run as fast as you can, You can't catch me, I'm the gingerbread man".

To keep with our Christmas cookie them, we made and decorated gingerbread cookies. (And, yes! My Kadyn is wearing a gingerbread shirt on purpose)
My older group was all smiles as they helped outline and decorate their cookies with m&m's and red hots.

My younger group was all business... I could get them to look up at me for nothing!
And baby Mia acts as the Fox in the "Gingerbread Man" story and eats the gingerbread man's head off. Kinda a weird story if you ask me...hmmmmm!
Our finished projects... we ate the outlined cookies for snack and I so very nicely am sending the sugar coated ones home with the kids!

We also colored Gingerbread people and read,"Gingerbread baby" and "Gingerbread friends". We had such a fun day and the house smells great to boot!

Tomorrow is our last cookie day... and me and my ever growing waist line will be so sad for it to end! It is very easy to eat cookies in the name of education.

Our wonderland...

Tuesday night after the daycare day was done, Gaby and Kadyn bundled up to play on the hill at the side of out house. It makes for an awesome sledding hill and the kids from the neighborhood come to play.
Our first night... just a light snow but enought to make snowballs....
and sled... Kadyn was fearless this year. She wanted no help from no one!
Wednesday we had a snow day. I still had daycare so we waited until the work day was finished and the temps were a little higher. Then we all bundles up this time and played in the snow. This time we had a little more to play with!

Mia had a blast all bundled up and riding in the wagon. She reminds me of "The Christmas Story". When the littlest brother falls down and is so bundled up he can't get up..."Ralpie, don't leave me". Mia wasn't that bad but close to it. Her coat pretty much wears her!
All three of the Fluke girls...

Red noses, frosted cheeks, and wet jeans... We love snow days!

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Let it snow, let it snow, let it snow... Inside and Outside!
Our playground this morning.
We made coffee filter snowflakes...
Then adding water, folding, cutting and singing to Frosty the Snowman...
we have our own Winter wonderland....

After we finished our art, we stepped into baking mode and made snowball cookies. Each kid took a turn rolling the cookie dough into a rough ball. Then we baked and dropped them into "snow" aka powder sugar. What a fun and winters treat!

Monday, December 7, 2009

Christmas Cookie week

has started at daycare... and let me say I can hardly wait. To make cookies everyday in the name of education and hands on teaching experiences... what could be better?

Each day we will make an art project and cookie that go with each other. We will get a lot of time in the kitchen and lots of baking knowledge to share. Today we did sugar cookies. We colored frosting, used cookie cutters, measured out the ingredients and made made wonderful cookies!
For our art, we painted with Christmas cookie cutters... even my younger ones were able to participate in this project. Mia really just wanted to eat the paint...
After we baked and let the cookies cool off, we decorated. Against every OCD bone in my body, I stepped back, gave them the frosting and let them go at it. They had a blast...
And here are our festive cookies that have loads and loads of frosting on them just waiting to go home tonight...(we all had one while decorating- you think I would let them eat THAT much frosting in one time? ---nope---) gotta save some sugar for the moms and dad... =)