Friday, June 19, 2009

Mommy’s Boot Camp

Summer vacation is always a good time to teach the kids some new skills. Especially with a baby on the way!

So, I am giving the two older children a morning routine and a bedtime routine and giving them some new chores. In the morning, they know that they have to finish their routine and then give me their report before they can watch TV or play on the computer or whatever it is they want to do. They also have to play outside before they can earn video game time. At night they have a shorter routine, and they must complete it and give me a report before they get their dessert. They are so cooperative, and they have been spending a lot of time playing outside with each other and with friends.

Here are some of things I want them to learn this summer:
Nathaniel: Fold and put away his clothes, make his own lunch, help Daddy in the yard and garden, and vacuum; he can already empty the dishwasher and take out the trash
Emily: Fold and put away her clothes, make her own lunch, wipe down bathroom counters, empty small trash cans, and fold bath towels
Andrew: Fold washcloths and buckle himself in the car (he will get to sit in the back row with the big kids when the baby comes); he is just recently completely potty-trained--yea!
Daniel: Sleep in a big boy bed, and stop throwing tantrums!

Sunday, June 14, 2009

Reptile madness

Last week, Michael saw a snake slither across our garage. I had a hard time believing it could be as big as he said it was, but I kept the children in the house while he tore apart the garage looking for its hiding place. When he finally found it under a bookshelf (we could only see the tail and the head), we decided it would be best to call for help because we had no idea if it was poisonous or not. We called a man from the yellow pages to come and get it for us, and I’m so glad we did because there were actually two of them—male and female!—and they were big. We originally had thought that since it was so expensive to have him come and get them that Michael could just do it, but he looked at me and said, "Honey, you really need to call the guy back and have him come out here." He had said a prayer to himself about it and he felt very strongly that we would need help. Michael is very wise about these things, and I'm so grateful to him. It was hard to tell since they were coiled up, but I’m sure the snakes were at least 5 feet long. The man said they were rat snakes, and they are not poisonous but one bit him. I wish I had thought to take a picture, but I was just glad to be rid of them.

Afterward, I was relieved but also sad to see my garage in such disarray. On Saturday, Michael had planned on doing yard work. Since it rained, he decided to tackle the garage. He did a wonderful job! He even went through some boxes of papers that he had been keeping for eight years or more. I was so happy! He also got rid of the bookshelf. I don’t have any “before” pictures, but here are the “after” pictures.