Saturday, October 22, 2016


Some random things that have been happening lately:

My awesome dad and father-in-law came over and helped us pour this sweet cement slab in our backyard. Before this, it was known as the dirt patch (or the mud patch or the weed patch depending on the season). Now it will be known as a patio. Very classy. We might even dye it with some fancy cement acid stain and someday may even put a hot tub on it. We'll see.
Sora went to the dentist for her 7.5 year old birthday celebration. She was not very excited about this milestone. She had a cavity, but only one which is a win in my book.
 Here she is just being plain adorable.
The other day, I went into her class to observe since I wasn't able to go to her open house (the downside of teaching at Sora's school - I had to host my own classroom's open house). Anyway, she was excited to show me something she called "Grammar in Art". She chose this picture:
Children Playing on the Beach by Mary Cassatt 

There were a number of questions (grammar related, or course) to answer regarding the picture. The first was to name "at least 5" nouns. Sora wrote down 6, explaining that she always tries to do one more than is asked. She said, "5 is the minimum, and I want to do more than the minimum". It made my overachieving heart happy. 2 was to name some proper nouns that could be related to the picture. She wrote "Hawaii, Pacific Ocean, Summer Solstice". 3 was a sentence that she had to symbolize. Symbolizing sentences is something I especially love about Montessori elementary. I remember learning grammar diagraming in 7th grade and absolutely LOVING it. I love that Sora gets to start that 6 years earlier! She doesn't know all of the parts of speech yet - she knew all of the triangles (article, adjective, nouns) and circles (verbs) on her own. The other symbols (for conjunction and preposition) she didn't know. So, she walked over to a chart on the wall which explains each type of speech, shows the symbol and gives and example. From that, she extrapolated  that "and" was a pink rectangle and "in" and "under" were green crescents. I was super impressed that she figured that all out on her own, and when she showed Kyle a few days later, she even remembered what those two types of speech were called.
 Unfortunately, when she came to actual open house with Kyle, she face planted on the way inside and was pretty upset, which ended the evening a lot sooner than planned.

Sunday, October 2, 2016

Fair Time

After living in the same town for 3 years, we somehow managed to avoid going to the local fair until now. One of Sora's favorite singers, Rachel Platten, happened to be playing at the fair this year, so we decided it was finally time to go.

We went on a weekday after school, so we had just enough time to ride two rides (Sora and Kyle on the "adult" roller coaster),
feed some animals at the petting zoo,

 check out the children's village (if only this was a kid's museum - it was actually better than some of the museums I've been to),
 eat dinner and pause for some photo ops
 before finally grabbing an elephant ear and finding a seat for the show.

 This is hard to see, but while we were waiting for the concert, there was a big screen that people could text messages to. At one point, a message saying "Hi Nora and Moose" came up! We had been spotted (and spell checked). Sora and Kyle tried to figure out the mystery of who sent the message, but couldn't figure it out.

 Finally the concert started. My picture is terrible, but you could easily see Rachel Platten and she gave a great concert - just perfect for both Sora and us! At one point, she walked around and came very close to Sora before heading back to the stage.
 This is how close Sora was (she and Kyle were down closer than I was). Her songs are so positive and upbeat - in addition to Fight Song, Stand by You and Better Place, the other lesser known songs were good too. Plus, there was a cover of my favorite (and only song I know by) Justin Bieber song - Love Yourself - which means I was in love with the singer after that!
The concert was just the right length and we stopped to bang on some random metal objects before we left. Plus, because it was a weekday, we found street parking and saved $5!
Our final verdict: the concert was great, and the fair wasn't as bad as I had anticipated. When Sora's a few years older, we will finally fork up for the ride pass and she will love it. But it's also not an annual event in our household.

Sunday, September 18, 2016

This Week

Sora has been a very slow tooth-looser. She finally lost her fourth tooth this week. She apparently lost it but the tooth fairy took pity on her and still gave her a dollar. She also thinks the tooth fairy should be paying her $1800 per tooth. She knows this money comes from me or Kyle and she thinks that Kyle would pay her up to $7 per tooth while I would only pay up to $1 per tooth. 
 Sora has also been into tennis lately. I mentioned this already, but something about her with a racket and ball is adorable! She is getting a little better and has fun no matter how many times she misses the ball!

Sunday, September 11, 2016

Almost Perfect Day

Okay, so this day would have been made more perfect with photos. Sorry.

Yesterday, we spent a family day with no extra obligations. This is the first in a very long time! First, we hit up the kid's day sponsored by PlayDate Magazine. It was filled with bouncy houses, venders giving things away to kids, watching dancers, snacking, and even a tour of the Capital Theatre. Very cool. The weather was perfect - sunny and warm, but not too hot.

Kyle made us a delicious late dinner involving sausage sandwiches.

Later, we went on a family bike ride to the park where we played a family game of tennis (our first ever). Sora was so funny - every time she tried to hit the ball and missed she would giggle incessantly. I loved how happy she was! She eventually hit the ball against the wall while Kyle and I played a "real" game of tennis (our first in YEARS - we used to play all the time before we had Sora). Sora was trying to hit the ball over the fence and she finally succeeded, so she was happy. Then she played on the playground while Kyle and I continued our battle Royale. While on the playground, Sora finally perfected the technique of getting her feet up on the monkey bars so she could hang upside down.

We ate dinner outside and even had some ice cream. A wonderful day of creating family memories.

Friday, August 26, 2016

First Day of School

Sora needed a family photo, so we had one taken at camp. The next weekend we all got our crazy long hair cut.
Sora's hair was either braided or looked like this most of the summer. It was so long that it got tangled and was impossible to brush. 

We went to the Olde Letterpress Museum a few weeks ago. It was incredibly way too hot to be in a non-air conditioned building. Other than that, it was pretty cool.
 Sora got to set her type (once she chose from a million fonts) and write her name. She is embracing her middle name lately and finally likes the color grey (we are embracing the British spelling)! She chose to write "Sora Grey" with the letterpress.
And finally, we had our first day of school this week. Even though it was over 90 degrees, my fashion-conscious 7 year old chose to wear this adorably hot outfit.

 We took a few together since it was her first day of 2nd grade and my first day of my 2nd year at her school. She loved the way my hair is blowing in the wind in this picture (I think it was a poorly time hair flip).
 And a more normal picture:
In Sora's school, 1st - 3rd is in the same class, so there isn't a lot drastically different on the surface for her this year, other than learning new things, not being the youngest group in the classroom, and having less teeth.

As far as my first day goes, I was crazy nervous with starting a new school year, especially after not having been in the classroom at the beginning of the last school year (I started out in the daycare and moved to a classroom in the middle of October). BUT, it went fantastic! I am very excited about my 19 students this year and have a great outlook on the school year as a whole. Yeah!

Sunday, July 31, 2016

Long Summer

This summer has been a little hectic for our tiny family. Kyle has been working all hours of the day and night up at camp, as usual. I have been in Montana for three weeks to finish up my Montessori primary teaching certification course. Sora has been bouncing around between grandparents and summer camp. We have all been busy and entertained in our own ways.

Here are some of the highlights: 

Sora flew with my parents to Michigan to spend a week with her cousins. She had a midnight flight, so she got a very late night treat of clam chowder.
They spent most of their time in Indiana at a Jellystone camp ground. There were a lot of water features and other fun things for kids to do, so the three girls had a great time. 

They also went to the Henry Ford museum which apparently was amazing! 
Sora came back to Washington on a Saturday and the next morning, she was back up at camp for a full week in a cabin with another cousin and some friends from school and past camp. An entire cabin of 7 year olds!
While on her overnight, she lost her top front tooth. This is one of the last before pictures. Look at that gorgeous smile!
Sora even chose to play in some of the camp games that she often sits out of. She is super competitive and won't play games if she doesn't think she will win. Here she is teaming up with a 10 year old boy (her favorite demographic) for Predator/Prey - a tag/hiding/surviving game.

And of course there were friendship bracelets involved. 

After 5 days at camp, Kyle's mom picked Sora up and took her to Lake Chelan.

 Sora really wants to have long hair, but it keeps getting tangled and she hates having it brushed. We've compromised for now with many braids.

And while Sora was busy having fun, I was in class every day. There are a bunch of pictures, but I will spare you the Montessori madness and just show you two of my daily Montana life. I stayed at an AirB&B that was 2 miles from the school. Luckily, I got to use a bike so I rode the bike to class every morning. Sometimes, I stopped at Starbucks on the way (it was a very perfect bike ride and super convenient to everything). So, this is a picture from my last morning with my Americano inside of the coffee cup.

And that has been our summer so far. Now that we are all back in the same state, we have 2 weeks left of summer camp and 2 weeks left before I go back to work. I'm hoping to squeeze a few adventures in, but we'll see what happens!

Tuesday, June 28, 2016

Letters from Camp

This is Sora's letter from camp. I love the tact that she tries to use by stating "we need to communicate better" rather than just "Why did you tell grandma I don't want any mail?". In actuality, grandma and I must have miscommunicated because I knew exactly what Sora wanted, but I thought it was a very sweet way of wording a letter for a 7 year old.