10 June 2011


Wendy, Bianca, and Me (my MOPS buddies)
I'm amazed at how much we do during the week!  We have so much fun going to new places, visiting old places, and hanging out with friends.  For the summer (June 1st marks the summer to me, I know it's early but I can't help it, and with temps in the 90s this week it seemed rather fitting.

Monday, after I cleaned, we ate, and the kids were dressed we did and hour of school and then headed to the OB public library for story/craft time.  It ended up being cancelled, but we still were able to play with familiar library friends, color pictures, read books, and take out new books.  Since I volunteered to plan a MOPS (Mothers of Preschoolers) playdate to Holmdel Park/Longstreet Farm we took out some fun farm books, and of course some Bernstein Bears books.  After nap time I took the kids to the OB shoppes and bought some birthday presents with my gift cards!  That was fun!  I got some new Yankee candles (Macintosh scent) some leggings, and some new fun summer tops!  Thanks Mom!  I love gift cards!

Tuesday morning we headed to the farm to meet 5 mommy friends and their kids!  So there were 5 adults and 8 kids.  I brought Julia and Mark, Bianca brought Olivia, James, and Steven (Marky's birthday buddy...Bianca and I were pregnant together with our sons two years ago, it was beyond exciting) Wendy brought Madison, and Petia brought Emma, and Petia's friend (I forgot her name!) brought her little boy (Oh dear, I forgot his name, what a cutie he was with his blond curls).  Bianca's kids were the oldest ranging from 6, 5, 2, and Julia and Madison are 3 1/2, and Mark, Emma, and blondie boy were all 2.  The big kids were wonderful and did their own thing and hung out with each other.  The 2 year olds were adorable.  They held hands, shared snacks and played together.  I loved it.  It's not often that Mark gets so many buddies in one day. 

I can't stand their cuteness!!! This is Steven, Emma, and Mark, the 2 year olds!  I brought my wagon and Mark was being toted around in it, and next thing I know Emma climbed in and I gained a new daughter for the day, and Mark loved sharing with her...until she stole his snack cup...but we worked it out!

At the farm, the highlight was petting Mr. Riley when we first got there.  He's the gray cat that just snuggles on the chair.

We also spotted two peacocks this time (and Marky was totally fine, even after his harrowing chase experience, lol) The male loved showing off his grand feathers for the kids.  The kids were amazed!  The moms were amazed that this was the male peacock and not a female peacock.  But the female peacock is rather plain, we decided she had more of the Proverbs 31 inner beauty rather than this showy male.

My Bianca gave the kids lessons at each station.  Here we were looking at the chickens, but to the right there was a huge garden (much bigger than mine at home) and Bianca, a proud teacher mommy who also home schools her kids (how does she do it with 3?...she's amazing)  was teaching the kids here about farming and how we get our produce not from the stores but from the hard work of the farmers.  We tried to figure out what each plant was, we saw lots of different lettuce plants.

I was amazed at how tall Julia is getting.  I mean I see her every day but I don't realize how tall she is until she stands next to friend's kids, and Olivia is almost 6!  Julia can barely fit in my lap anymore, although that doesn't stop us!  Here Julia and Olivia were investigating the moss on the tree when we asked for a picture.

Next we headed to the playground.  I was amazed at how much Mark wanted to be with the big kids.  And he keeps up with them too!

Mark when did you get so big, learn to drink from your own water bottle, climb up the steps to the bridge and tunnels, hang from the monkey bars, and roll down the hill? 

Better yet, when did you get so stinkin handsome??? 

Ooooh, I love this little guy!  Check out his cool new birthday shorts!  Whenever I dress Mark in the morning, he goes, "Nice shirt!!!!!!!!" Because he feels he looks so handsome like his daddy, and he runs to show Julia, and Julia goes, "Handsome boy!"  She is SUCH a big sister!  I"m amazed at how they get along these days.

Don't you just want to scoop him up in this picture!!!!!!!!!!??

Mark at the park with the big kids...there are two sides to the playground, but all the kids gravitate to the big kid area which is for 5-12 year olds.  Talk about heart attack...but they were all having such a great time.

Emma enjoying an apple in the tunnel...2 year olds are awesome!

James (5 yrs old) on top of the tunnel...so brave!
We ended our time rolling down the hill.  The kids loved this.  And Olivia took pictures of some of the moms which is nice, to prove we were there!  Thanks Mops friends, we had a great trip with you!

On Wednesday, we went to a NEW library! The Matawan-Aberdeen Library which is closer to our house.  It's much smaller, but sweet.  I registered the kids for a Wednesday read and craft time.  The theme was strawberries.  Click here, and here, and here for some worksheets and some fun fact sheets to do with your own preschooler at home.  I had fun researching about strawberries, which are my favorite fruit!

Our new teacher was Miss Chrissie, she was young and sweet, and helped us make our craft.  The berry shape was already cut out and the leaf.  We glued that on and then the kids were given black paint and a Qtip they had to add seeds to their berry.  It was so cute.  Julia ended up with a black mustache, but both kids loved painting and I loved the idea of using a Qtip as a paint brush!

At home we read The Big Hungry Bear (who loves strawberries!) we borrowed this from the library.  And the kids crafts got hung up on the fridge!  It was a fun Wednesday, and after library time we went grocery shopping at Shop Rite where mommy used coupons with kids and saved $18!  Nice! The kids ate munchkins as I shopped!

At the new library I was amazed at how well behaved the kids were.  Reading books, talking quietly, and following the new rules, mommy sure was proud.

After nap time I was amazed at how big mark is in his crib...soon we will be thinking of either a Toddler bed or a big boy bed.  Above you can see all his birthday cards hung for him to see.  My 2 year old boy has a great room.  And he certainly is cute!

Mark's room is so much fun now you can even find Julia in his room playing with his train set and puzzles, and stuffed animals!  That's how you know a room is fun, when all the kids gravitate to that room.

Thursday we were headed to Dorbrook Sprayground.  And I was packing the car with wagon, towels, cooler, and buckets a curious thing happened (I decided to skip Circle Time since we had lots to prepare for our trip out)...

Julia and Mark did Circle time without me!!!!!!!!!! I walked in from packing the car to find both kids reading a book and Julia greeted me with, "Mom we already sang pretzel style, it's time for books."  Mark was seated on a chair with his thumb in his mouth.  I grabbed the camera! How cool, that my kids are so trained in our school time, they even do it without me!  I was amazed that Julia was the leader and Mark was the obedient student.  Kinda cool.  Dorbrook was so fun we stayed from 10-12 but it was 99 degrees so we left early to protect fair headed children from burning. (No pictures at Dorbrook because when you take two kids and a wagon an $800 camera is not safe with that many kids, water, and people around!)  After we got home and napped the kids did some worksheets and then we headed to Aunt Debi's pool for prayer/play time!  I love Thursdays! 

Coloring Strawberry pages, I'm amazed at how Julia can now color in the lines!

Mark was ready for Aunt Debi's pool, last time he was very nervous and barely went in.  I was amazed that this time, he had no problem getting in, swimming, and playing, and he kept telling me and Debi "All by myself!" As if we could let him go and float!

Mark in his mini boat with Aunt Debi.

I am amazed that Julia is tall enough to walk around in the pool.  Which only makes it easier to enjoy the pool with the kids.  We had so much fun with Aunt Debi.  She is the best, Julia kept telling her so!  She can't wait to learn to dive!

I'm amazed at how loved we are.

Today is gymnastics and then we will go in our new pool grandma Donna bought...pictures to come soon!

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