Saturday, December 18, 2010


Blogger won't let me post my videos of my kids' adorable school programs. The blog post I had in my mind isn't going to work & I don't have the energy to re-think it. Half of our supper company for tonight canceled on us. After I had two roasts cooking & dessert already made. Speaking of dessert we made cookies last night & my kids won't stop asking me for one. Even though I've said no multiple times in multiple ways. They've even resorted to making the poor innocent baby come & ask me. Right now they are upstairs putting everything they find on the floor into a garbage bag. I'm that sick of their mess. I might even go put it in the garbage can when they are done. It wouldn't take much to push me over that edge.


Anyone else having trouble uploading videos? The last few times I've tried I've gotten an error message. I'm not doing it any different than I used to. This is very frustrating......

Friday, December 10, 2010

Signs Of The Season

The gingerbread (high fructose corn syrup) house we made at school today.

Listening to the Christmas carol station.

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

The Girls Part Two

The one in the foreground is a holy terror today. I think her goal is to see how many time-outs she can achieve during a days work.

The one in the background really is sick now. When she went to the school nurse yesterday neither myself or the nurse believed her. She proved us wrong after she got off the bus yesterday.


Friday, December 3, 2010

The Girls

I don't think she's really truly sick. We'll call today a mental health day.

Excuse the crusty nose. I just had to show you her beautiful eyes. I'm in love!

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Starting To Fear Food

A quick overview of the past couple of weeks.

Had some blogging buddies over a few days after my bout with the flu.

Enjoyed a normal Thanksgiving with some good friends.
Then drove down to Iowa to help our relatives work on their new house.
Kaia decided she must get sick in the van 10 minutes from our destination.
We bought a new car seat for her if that tells you anything.

Daddy felt so sorry for his sick baby that he decided he should be sick too.
Here they are camped out on the relatives living room floor on Sunday morning.

The more the merrier right?
He actually ate a little supper, but I think he'll be home again tomorrow.
Four down, one to go.

Friday, November 5, 2010


The end of October passed in a blur as we had to say goodbye to Craig's grandma. She went to bed on a Saturday night and was never conscious again. Her nine living children were called home. We thought she would go as soon as the last one got there on Monday. She didn't. On Tuesday they brought her home to care for her during her final days. On Saturday afternoon she finally faded away.

It was sad and special & emotionally exhausting. And we were only there a fraction of most days. Not pulling any all night shifts. It was amazing to witness the love her children poured forth during that time. We will miss the special spunkiness of 93 year old great grandma. I hope everyone has someone like her in their lives at one point or another.

The Connelly side of the Schoeller family tree sang a hymn at the graveside service.

Kaia was sleeping during the burial, but she did get in on the practice session at the church. I'm so glad I snapped that photo. It perfectly captured the moment.

Time for a family photo.

We took lots, but somehow I just loved this one in the tree. It's the tree in great grandma's yard. One that many children have played in. It was just fitting that once everyone made it back to the house that the kids were climbing all over it in their funeral best.

Halloween 2010

I got to go to Micah's class party. I thought I should bring this cute frog with me.

I imagine that this photo might horrify some people. But, my kids only trick or treated for 30 minutes. They didn't get that much candy. I love to have it out of the house as soon as possible. If that means letting my two year old eat it for breakfast, than so be it.

FYI: Micah was a bow hunter & Ayla was a gypsy. I did take photos of them, but somehow they disappeared off my camera. I think the toddler hopped up on sugar had something to do with that.

Dress Up

Have you ever seen a harmonica playing fairy deer tiger?

Even Kids Like Yoga

Practicing yoga at home while Ayla is at her yoga class.

Thursday, October 21, 2010


Thursday has become my favorite day of the week. Why? No extra kids. No vision therapy. No errands to run. No workout class that I enjoy (and therefore feel I can't miss). No story time. No kids yoga. No classroom to be in. Nowhere I have to be but right here. In front of my computer awaiting my virtual tea time chat with a bunch of lovely ladies! (We do have swimming lessons tonight, but that is ages away & therefore seems irrelevant at the moment). I can't imagine being busier than I am right now. I'm glad I can see when I'm at my limit! I'll maybe post some photos later today. If I feel like it.

Friday, October 8, 2010

Parent-Teacher Conferences, 2010

Photo courtesy of Jennifer Gail Photography.

We had our first conferences last night. They went as expected. But still.......I just can't shake this feeling I have. A feeling I can't even really name. Disappointment, maybe? I'm not really worried about Ayla and her struggles. When I work with her she can do everything she needs to do. It just takes a bit more time and some extra patience on my part. Her teacher doesn't have the extra time. Her teacher last year didn't have the extra time either. At least I don't think she did. She never noticed Ayla's struggles until I pointed them out to her. Why? Because Ayla knows how to behave herself. She is quiet, obedient & she works hard. Therefore she falls through the cracks. Even now that we know she has problems with vision she falls through the cracks. After all there are several overly energetic kids in her class this year. It's true. I went on a field trip with her class. Mrs. H must be exhausted at the end of every day. She came right out & told us that she doesn't have the extra time that Ayla needs. Could we work with Ayla every night? Can we explain the worksheets she doesn't understand and correct them with her? Yes, of course we can, but.........

I'm glad I have time to focus on my daughter. But I still feel like there is something wrong with this picture. Ayla spends 45 minutes with the reading teacher every single day. Along with 7 other kids from her class. So that teacher has 45 minutes a day with 8 struggling children. Does Ayla fall through the cracks there too. You bet she does. Mrs. S admitted as much to me.

So now what? Ayla loves school. She doesn't share any of the reservations that I have about her teachers. Of course I don't share them with her. Do I just accept things for the way they are? Keep helping her as much as I can here at home? Start helping her teachers by volunteering every week? Like I said I don't mind doing any of this. In fact I am so thankful that I can. That we've decided it's important for me to stay home. That we've chosen to do without some things so that I can. On the other hand I do feel like there is something that is just off when it comes to our school systems & society in general. There isn't an easy solution. So, I will continue to focus on my home and my family. I think it all starts there.

Thursday, September 30, 2010


It's Homecoming tomorrow night. That means the kids get to have fun with their clothing every day this week. Every day except Monday that is. We were gone Thursday & Friday. That's when the teachers sent home the dress code schedule. So, my kids missed pajama day. There was a bit of weeping & wailing when they got home. I reminded them that I am always a phone call away! Anyways.

This is Micah's idea of being mis-matched. I know. I don't get it either. I think his shoes were on the wrong feet. He assured me he was going to be spectacular this year. Guess he got cold feet at the last minute.

This one has no qualms when it comes to outrageousness. Last year she got voted as the most mis-matched girl in her class. She got to have her picture in the paper. That must be her goal again this year!

Do you like her hair? The funny thing is it looks just like the hairdo's I used to make on my drawings of punk rockers. That was how I entertained myself at about age 11. I never thought I'd be fixing my own daughter's hair that way one day.

Just Because

It would be a crime not to share these photos. I almost didn't, because I didn't have them. My Aunt took them on her camera & I forgot to download them. Thank goodness the next time she visited she still had them on her camera.

What? Don't you eat your carrots with the garden dirt still on them? Can't get any fresher!

Friday, September 17, 2010

I'm Dreaming

I'm dreaming about the past when my baby really was a baby!

I'm dreaming of the future. When my baby is done with diapers. I guess I'm a bit bi-polar that way. Maybe that's the way you always feel when you know it's your last baby......

Happy 2nd birthday, sweet "baby" Kaia!

Tuesday, September 7, 2010


Waiting for the bus.

She finally gets to start.
Hope she doesn't have too many arm flapping moments today.

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Summer Is Officially Over

The big yellow bus returned today. At 8:20 vs. 7:00 a.m. Awesome!

Here's Micah on his first day of third grade. This morning he said, "I must be excited after all. From 2:02 on I kept checking the clock!" He's at the age where he picks out his own clothes. He looks nice & fine, but I'm glad I have two kids left that don't mind my input too terribly much.

This one is currently missing her first day of first grade. She got the chicken pox. I do believe she is past the point of being contagious, but I kept her home anyway. The marks on her face don't seem to be getting better. I don't understand why they are so much worse than the ones on her back. Hopefully I can send her by Friday.

Friday, August 27, 2010

Where Was I?

For some reason I keep getting an error message when trying to load my video of wacky, wonderful Michelle. I'll keep trying, but in the meantime here's a few more photos from August.

We got kittens! Craig is allergic, but even he was taken in by these two rascals. Plus living out of town means we need some mousers around. I'm glad I took this photo, because a couple of days later the black & white one disappeared without a trace. A few days after that we came home to find the gray one with a mangled paw. Poor kitties ~ maybe we aren't meant to have them!

I love it that she's not afraid to try roller-skating!

Oh & the baby likes to hold other babies.

And rock out with some headphones. Too bad she didn't have these on when she was roller skating. It would have been so 80's.

She can take a bath in the new sink when mommy is too exhausted to climb the stairs & bend over the tub.

Surprise! Kaia isn't in the photo. Like my leaning tower of waffles?

Soggy-bottomed girl. Love this photo.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Summing Up August

I'm totally lame. I've been in a blogging funk. Enjoying summer, but not blogging about it. Enjoying summer, but in a chaotic sort of way. In one week the kids will be back in school & I am ready. Ready for alarm clocks, supper at 5:30 and kids in bed by 8:00. Maybe I'll even be able to blog a couple of times a week.

Kaia & I were lucky enough to fly to Reno for a short visit with my high school bestie, Michelle. I have a video I'll post later that sums up the wonderful, zany, fun Michelle. Here's a photo of little bug and I at Lake Tahoe. An absolutely beautiful lake unlike any that I have ever seen before. If you ever get a chance to go do it!

While we were in Reno Craig's uncle died. So even though the occasion was sad it was nice to see some family when we got back.

Auntie Julie loves all her kids. Even when they are wiggling & jiggling all over her lap. She always has room for one more!

She thinks she's a little lady. On our trip she entered into the, "I do it" phase. Can you tell she's almost two? Miss Independent right on schedule.

Hanging out with Gramps.

I have more to post, but it's someones bedtime ~ be back soon. (I hope!)

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Here Comes The Sun

Perhaps some of you know that earlier this year we discovered Ayla needs bifocals. After further testing we now know that was just the tip of the iceberg. Starting next Tuesday she will begin a lengthy & expensive form of therapy. Vision therapy. It was a bit of a shock to get her test results & yet it all fit. Her quirkiness makes a bit more sense. We're guessing it may be a somewhat difficult journey but, we are excited at the thought of making a difference for her.

Little darling, it's been a long cold lonely winter
Little darling, it feels like years since it's been here
Here comes the sun, here comes the sun
and I say it's all right

Monday, July 26, 2010


She lost her first tooth
Decided she wanted "short hair"
Hence the bangs
Pictured below: The other two with their 10 cent smartie pops

Monday, July 12, 2010

The Requisite Beach Trip

Micah did not like salt water in his eyes, but he got braver as the day went on.

Kaia was scared of the crashing waves, but she sure enjoyed the sand and shells.

Ayla was happy with everything until she started to overheat & then she was done. Auntie Jo tells me the beach is a lot more fun if you're staying at a hotel right on the beach. Maybe we can try that next time.

She's a mermaid, can't you tell?

Creating a sand castle.

Life Is Good

We were in North Carolina for twelve days and I think at least nine of them were 90 degrees or more. Thank goodness for central air & swimming pools. The rellies have an awesome pool in their backyard. Guess where we spent a portion of every day?

Micah, Julissa & Jessia's feets.

Climbing Mountains And Stuff Like That

The reason why I haven't been blogging for the past two weeks. I have so many photos and stories to share though. I wish I would have blogged a little every day.

Anyway the kids & I flew down to North Carolina and Craig joined us several days later. We just got home early, early Sunday morning.

Uncle Mike had July 5th off so we took a day trip to the mountains. We went to a state park called Hanging Rock. First we had lunch & then went on a hike to see some waterfalls. Next up we went on an easy trail that was supposed to be wheelchair accessible (for Gramps) we had to park him about halfway through however. Next we went to the swimming beach to cool off. Finally we thought we'd go on the one mile hike to see Hanging Rock. Only a mile. Piece of cake, right? Wrong. Thank goodness Craig stayed back with the baby & Gramps. I just about died, but we made it. All of our kids did remarkably well, with hardly any complaining! After that we stopped at a diner & pigged out on some real Southern cooking. It was the perfect ending to a wonderful day!

Here's the kids on top of Hanging Rock. Do you think Micah is close enough to the edge? I was having a heart attack, but managed to get this photo anyway.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Mom, I'm Hungry

Sound familiar? It's the refrain of summer.

Monday, June 21, 2010


They flew in on Tuesday morning. Some of them flew home this morning. The rest fly home next Tuesday. We fly with them. Yay!

We drove up to Uncle Walter & Auntie Julie's house on Thursday. All of our kids (except for the baby) ran races on Friday. Two ran a one hundred yard dash. Two ran a quarter mile. Three ran a 5K.

Saturday Uncle Mike & Auntie Julie ran a half marathon. Great fun was had by all. To be continued.........