Friday, November 21, 2014

Getting Back in the Game

So, where have I been??  My last post was almost five months ago.  I really did not intend to take a blogging vacation and I can sum it up in two words..."real life".  I've been through a season in my non-virtual world that has caused my hobby blogging to take a back seat.  As I was finishing up the family Christmas letter that we send out with our Christmas cards it occurred to me that I needed to update the blog.  So in one lengthy, picture filled post I will attempt to catch everyone up on the last few months...

First up, swim team.  Soccer Boy became "Swim Boy" for a season and joined our pool's summer team.  He did pretty good for his first season and even got to compete in the area Midwest Swim Conference.  It made for a bit of craziness in our family life because of the two late night (and occasionally out of town) swim meets per week plus daily practices.  He had a lot of fun with it and I got to be a swim parent for a season, which means working as a time keeper during part of all the meets.  A learning experience all the way around and we both got to make some new friends at our pool.

Midwest Swim Conference 2014

Then there were the fun summertime activities.  Doug's office had a float in our hometown parade this year.  Princess and Game Boy enjoyed being part of that one and got to throw lots of candy.  Toddler Boy watched from the sidelines and worked on collecting lots of candy to share with his siblings.  I was with him to make sure he didn't get run over by the crazy motorcycles!  Good times, the older boys missed out on that weekend because they were camping with their Trail Life troop.

Blurry shot of Game Boy running with float

Church Camp
Speaking of camping, the older two spent a week at church camp over the summer.  They went to fishing camp for the first time and got to come home to tell us stories about the ones that got away.  Firstborn and Soccer Boy also brought the stomach flu home with them from camp and gave it to the whole family!  Not a fun season in la casa...

Taken on the last day pool was open
Spent lots of time meeting friends at the local parks and of course had fun swimming in the pool almost daily.  Princess learned to go off the diving board this year!  Game Boy learned to swim last season but really became a much stronger swimmer this year (read...I did not worry about him drowning all summer!!)

Lining up all the beach balls!

Go Cardinals!!
Our Cardinals made the playoffs again so we watched lots of post season ball on T.V.

We've spent lots of time at Doug's folks' farm this summer.  Grandma was wanting to break in some of her new horses so Firstborn is taking horseback riding lessons.  While he's riding the other kids have fun running around outside, fishing, and playing with the animals.

Hanging with Harley

Princess went off to school!  Yes, we are still a homeschooling family but Princess is attending first grade at the local public school this year.  She is loving going to school and making new friends and I am enjoying delegating some of her reading work to other teachers besides myself.  It frees me up a bit to focus on the other kids and especially Firstborn, who is now in high school.  There has already been field trips to the pumpkin patch and Halloween class parties.

Princess' first  day of school!
Playing in the corn pit

Of course, our family went pumpkin picking too...

Walking in the pumpkin patch
Brothers & best friends!

Game Boy is a good shot!

Enjoying target practice

The boys are taking classes this fall with our homeschool group, including their favorite, archery!  We have settled into a nice rhythm with our schoolwork (good, considering the year is almost half over).

Last but not least, we had our first snowfall before Thanksgiving, which is a bit rare around here...
Sledding in the backyard

Toddler Boy enjoying the snow

That ends my roundup post, hope I can keep more up to date during the holiday season but that might be wishful thinking on my part.  Doug is "officially" on vacation next week so we're looking forward to some family fun.  Have a good weekend!!