Monday, May 30, 2016

Dream Quest Fun Day 2016

Keira has been a part of three Dream Quest Fun shows since she has been riding.  She looks forward to this event every year!  She loves to watch the other students ride, but she loves to show all of us what she is learning.  My parents and Adrian's parents were able to attend this year.  Keira was very excited to have both sets of grandparents watching her. 

The fun show is set up where two or three riders are in the arena at a time.  They play games while riding on the horses.  In between groups of riders, they have games for any of the kids that want to play.  Kyle, Sophia, and Mercy played the first set of games, and Keira got in on the second and third round.  Avalyn wanted to play, but she was struggling so much with her asthma, that we didn't allow her to be involved.

The first game was a sack race.  Sophia was in the lead for almost the whole race.  But near the end, she fell, giving the win to Kyle!  Mercy had a great time.  The sack was almost big enough for her to run in, so she hopped a bit and ran the rest.

After the sack race, the kids raced on toy horses.  This time, Kyle was the clear leader.

When the second set of games started, many more kids joined in.  They played a variation of musical chair.  It was fun to watch as many of the younger kids didn't understand the rules and just all gathered together in the same hoop!

 The last game was red light green light.  Even Mercy got that game and really enjoyed playing it.  Dream Quest gave all the participants a beanie baby for playing!

Patrick enjoyed sitting and being held most of the time!  Mamaw got some Patrick snuggles.

Papaw got Keira snuggles!

Patrick loves chairs.  Adrian brought the little two seater thinking that Patrick would enjoy having his own seat.  

 This is what qualifies as a good picture when you have six kids and not a lot of time!

 I do not remember all the games that Keira played while riding on Buddy.  She and two other students got to ride, trot, and play games together.

The students had to carry a golf ball on a spoon all the way across the arena first in one hand and then in the other.  Keira never dropped hers!

The students then had to direct their horses to the other end of the arena, pick up a beanie baby and carry it back safely to the other side.  

Then they played horse soccer.  Keira and Buddy did a great job!

During Keira's time in the arena, it started raining!  I am thankful that they didn't end her turn early as she had such a great time.  She didn't mind riding in the rain!  I stood under a tree and watched, so I didn't get any pictures during the rain.
But in the end, Keira got a pink ribbon for being a part of the fun show.

(One day Keira wants to be a volunteer and help other people who are riding horses.  Jackie has told her she has to be 14!)

Saturday, May 28, 2016

Riding Lessons

It had been a while since I took Keira to her riding lessons.  I am so blessed that my mom takes her every week!  When her lesson was reschedule to Wednesday because of weather, the kids and I took the opportunity to take Keira and watch her ride.
Patrick and Mercy played in the bench swing for a little bit while the other kids played a game as we waited for Keira to come to the arena.

The lessons always start with leading the horse around the arena to allow the horse and rider to make sure they are comfortable together.  Keira looks so confident and in control!

 She is always smiling when she gets to ride.  And that smile is infectious!

I am amazed at how far she has come since she has started riding!  She is sitting so well, and she is controlling the horse all by herself!

Thursday, May 26, 2016

Building with Daddy

I mentioned before that Adrian built a bike rack for the kids' bikes.  It is a nice design and is working very well to help keep order in our garage.  He researched designs and then went to Home Depot to get wood on Friday evening.  On Saturday, he started  and completed the job!  The kids came and went helping him.  But Mercy stayed the longest.  She loved being by her daddy's side with the ear muffs on ready to lend a hand or finger as needed.

That curl just gets me every time!  I love it!

Those little smushy cheeks are wonderful!

And here we have both, the curl and the cheeks!

 The bike rack is a fairly simple design which is what makes it perfect for our needs.  The kids can use it without any trouble, and our garage is cleaner for it!

Tuesday, May 24, 2016

Project 366: Week 20

This is for the week of May 15 - 21.  Another week another doctor's appointment.  We are still trying to figure out why Avalyn is having difficulty breathing.  She went to the doctor on Monday, and the ER on Saturday.  With doctors and treatments and dishes and school, there hasn't been much time for anything else.  I am looking forward to school ending so that we can take a bit of a break.  I am hoping that the kids will be well enough to miss at least one week at a doctor's office!
(I know that what we are dealing with is nothing compared to other people.  And I know that we are right where the Lord wants us, so I am not really complaining about what is going on.  I am just busier than I would like to be.  I want to stay home and do nothing, but organize our school things and maybe paint something!  But I know that the Lord is in control and this is where he wants us, so I am trying to be satisfied right where I am.)

Sunday: We try to have a special dessert on the Lord's day.  Avalyn made macaroon tart shells and chocolate ganache.  These are very good and have almost no sugar in them!  I am thankful for children who love to cook and especially one that I can hand a recipe to and be confident that it will get made well.

Monday: Our dryer started making a loud noise when drying clothes Monday morning.  I had to stop the laundry and eventually took the wet clothes to my mom's house.  Adrian took the dryer apart and the kids collected all the money they found.  They found over $6!  Adrian couldn't find anything wrong with the dryer, so he put it back together and it worked!  Way to go, Adrian!  I am thankful for a handy husband!
While Adrian was taking apart the dryer, he put the drum in the family room.  The kids enjoyed climbing inside it.

Tuesday: My mom watched the kids for the evening so Adrian and I could go out for our anniversary.  We went to Macaroni Grill and Georgia Gun Club.  We enjoyed an adult conversation and shooting some different hand guns.  Georgia Gun Club was so much nicer than the other shooting range I have been to before!  I am thankful to have my parents close by so that they can be a part of my children's lives. 

Wednesday:  Keira's therapy was cancelled on Tuesday because of the weather.  The kids and I took her on Wednesday.  I got to watch her confidently lead and ride Buddy.  She also got to trot for us!  I am thankful for Jackie, Keira's instructor.  Keira has learned so much from him, and he is kind and thoughtful with her.

Thursday:  Patrick discovered that he can reach the water fountain switch!  He had so much fun turning it on and off!  I am thankful for the simple joys that he shows us every day.

Friday:  Mercy was tired at the dinner table, and couldn't keep her fingers out of her mouth.  She looked so sweet that I wanted a picture.  All she is missing is her "sucking blanket" which she does not suck, but sticks up her nose.  I am thankful for sleep!  We have been dealing with breathing difficulties in Kyle and Avalyn for over 2 months, so a full night's sleep has been elusive.

Saturday: Though the rain threatened and followed through, Dream Quest had their fun day.  We loved watching all the students show what they had learned during the year!  Keira rode in the last class so that she could ride on Buddy, the horse she has been working on for the last couple of months.  She had such a great time even though it rained during her time in the arena.  I am thankful for this form of therapy as it not only helps Keira learn and grow stronger, but it also makes her SO happy and gives her confidence in her abilities!
(I did have better pictures from the day, but I liked this one because you can see how Keira is working to direct Buddy to kick the ball.  The different students were taking turns playing "horse soccer.")

Monday, May 23, 2016

Project 366: Week 19

This is for the week of May 8 - 14.  Life has been so busy that I don't really remember what was going on this week!  We have been  dealing with Asthma and breathing difficulties with Avalyn and Kyle for a long time now and I feel like all we do are breathing treatments, school work, and dishes!  (Our dishwasher broke as well.)

Sunday:  Adrian and I got married 12 years ago!  I am thankful to God for giving him to me and all the many blessings God has showered upon us throughout our marriage.  I love you, honey! :)

Monday: Patrick likes to sit on chairs and stools, so he often gets "chaired" when we need him out of the way for a few minutes.  I am thankful for his wonderful smile and that Patrick seems to be sharing his smile more and more.

Tuesday: I needed to take a picture, so I took these two goof balls outside for a couple of shots.  Can you tell that they love each other?!  I am so thankful for my children's bonds with each other.  Not all of them enjoy all the others equally, but we can see wonderful friendships between sets of our children that are fun to watch grow and blossom.

Wednesday: I know I have posted at least one picture of Patrick asleep in his chair before, but it really is a common theme.  He hasn't really given up his morning nap, though I like to think that it is finished!  I am thankful for naps and rest when we need them, though I do prefer to rest in my bed!

Thursday: Megan and I continue our Thursday sewing time, though it will end very soon with the end of the school year.  This week, we worked on putting together some wonky houses that she had had for almost 5 years!  They were not easy to piece together since they were all different sizes, but we laid them out in a pleasing arrangement and just fiddled a bit until we came up with a configuration that did not need any inset seams.  These two little houses are on the bottom of one panel.  I love the 1970's color scheme.  I am thankful for this time where my kids can learn and grow with teachers that I trust.  And I am thankful for this fun time hangin' out with my sister.

Friday: For some reason, I didn't take a picture on Friday.  I am not at all sure why.  With so much going on right now though, I am not really surprised.  This picture is from last Saturday.  Patrick has discover the joy of the salad spinner!  He loved helping dry the salad!  I am thankful that even at this age he wants to be a part of whatever we are doing.  Sometimes, it can be a nuisance, but it is almost always fun or funny! :)

 Saturday: One of the many problems with having a lot of kids is with keeping things organized.  I will definitely admit that I don't do the best job at this.  But on Friday, I asked Adrian if he could build a bike rake for the kids bikes.  He looked at some designs and decided to wing it!  (That is a big step!)  Adrian bought the wood on Friday, and built the bike rack on Saturday with a little help from the kids.  He did an awesome job!  The end result is absolutely wonderful and fits our needs beautifully.  He even made a space for a bike for Patrick!  I am thankful for a husband who is willing to try new things, build things for our family, and allows the kids to help in the process.
Apparently, while Mercy was helping, Adrian would tell her it was time to use the driver.  Mercy would sometimes grab it and hold on while Adrian drove in the screw.  Other times she would reach out and touch the driver with a finger as her contribution to the work load!

Wednesday, May 18, 2016

April's Leftovers

I had a couple other pictures from April that I wanted to share.

Keira loves collecting caterpillars.  She will carry them around and let them crawl all over her!

I took pictures of this tree outside of the Lawrenceville Church of God.  I wish there was a way to take a good picture of big trees!  Maybe I need a wide angle lens.  But I still like this picture.

I am surprised that I got a picture of Patrick on the scooter.  Every time I get the camera out, he crawls or walks towards me.  I did manage to get this one picture.

Patrick has trouble staying awake through lunch!  He often falls asleep in the middle of the meal!

 Patrick really likes his morning nap, though he doesn't get it often.

Kyle thinking hard how to spell a word for his Mad Libs.

From the project 366, you would have seen a picture from this sculpture.  I really liked all the rusty goats! The cemetery in the background is an added bonus.