Boy, since it is so hard to update the blog, maybe I should try for a digest form.
It is definitely autumn here. Yes, we may have a hot day every now and again, but it is hovering around 71 or so each day, sunny, and cool at night. We are very excited about pumpkins this year. Below is Monito kissing the one he selected from the farm stand. I can't wait to actually carve them into jack-o-lanterns and light them - the kids will go nuts!
We also harvested some of our Concord grapes. I have used my steam juicer to extract the juice, and we have around three gallons ready for me to can. Um, once I learn how to can. We also have around three gallons of tomatillos, 1 gallon of ground cherries, and 4 gallons of cherry tomatoes from our CSA u-pick fields. I have really got to get busy in the kitchen!
There is much playground time, as well. Pequita is evolving into quite the jungle gym rat. She wants to do what the big kids do, and is stretching my tolerance of panic and fear as she scrambles up and down precarious equipment with her new found brevity and coordination. I am just amazed. She scoots up ladders, vaults over large gaps, dangles from high places before artfully dropping the mulch ground. I can't believe she isn't even two for another few weeks.
We hosted the first day of Wednesday nursery school at my house. The kids were super, and Monito worked out fine, even though he isn't a full part since he's younger. I was worried that he or Pequita would insist on nursing a lot during the 2.5 hour morning, but they were both so intrigued and stimulated by 4 kids in their house that they barely noticed me. Play-Doh, swingset, instruments, story time, trains, puzzles and more. I was exhausted. It is set up with 5 kids, 6 parents rotating in pairs, and is held on Monday and Wednesday mornings from 9 - 11:30 am. We will follow the same structure every class, but each week will have a different theme. This month is animals, so we sing songs about barnyards, do craft projects involving lamb cutouts and cotton balls, and read books about animals. Mondays are held at our friend's house downtown, and Wednesday's are held chez moi. If the kids adapt really well, we'll start having other parents host it, but we wanted to keep it simple at first. So far, so good. On the days that I am not hosting, I take Monito with me and leave Pequita with her friends. On school days at the Homestead, we just include Monito in with the other kids. He starts getting tired a bit earlier than the older kids, and his attention span is a tiny bit shorter, but all in all it is pretty effortless to add him in. He is so used to following right behind his older sister that he is a trooper.
My dad called on Wednesday during nursery school and offered to come visit this weekend. He and my mom are aiming to see my kids at least every 8 weeks, and that is now. I said YES! and they arrived on Thursday night. I have been much more productive with extra hands around, the kids have been played with and gotten much more one-on-one time with four adults around, I have stripped the lead paint off of two step back cabinets and gotten a primer coat on both, and my kids have fallen even more deeply and enduringly in love with their GeeMaw and GeePaw. [I'm holding out for Grandma and Grandpa, but that is the closest that Pequita can come these days.]
Tomorrow morning, I get up and ditch Monito with my mom while I get Pequita to nursery school downtown by 9am, then get myself to the acupuncturist by 9:06 to treat my neck spasm [ouch] and then dart back home to get DAVE! the carpenter started again; we are reentering the construction zone way of life, and I couldn't be more pleased. Then back downtown to fetch Pequita, and home again to say goodbye to my parents. Then, god help me, the kids had better nap at the same time, as I am tired already just thinking about all that.