Friday, September 7, 2012

Friday Fun

Well, today we had homeschool...at home of course.  A friend called later that afternoon and asked if we wanted to join her at the park.  Why of course!  So, she came over and we all went to the park together.  We have many parks to choose from around here which is nice.  Picked one that the kids could play on the big field if they wanted to. 


Summer just adores Ally as you can see.  And, you can see my photographers in the background.


My little fashionista.  Bow in hair and don't you love the scarf?  Skirt too big.


Alyona and Ally having some fun rolling down the hill.


Max giving Nik a hand so he doesn't fall.


Nik getting across on his own.


Summer enjoying going down the slide.


Nothing like rolling down a hill.  These two are going for it again.  They checked first though and it was a fire ant land mine.


Look at how much room they have to play ball!


Summer and Nik.  


Look at that blue sky.  She really was just having a blast.


Nik loving every minute of his playground time.  


 Max, just chillin' out.  He's great w/ his younger sibs.


Reni stopped for just a second to humor mom w/ a picture.


Logan trying to spin a ball on his hand.


Alex, trying to cool off.  He's not mad, but over heated from playing soccer for so long.

They're all playing on the field.  So much space.


Nik, not looking at me b/c he's in time out for a bit.  He was throwing his shoes from the top of the hill.  Nik and Alex love to throw.  Hard habit to break but we're working on it.  

We all had a really good time. I enjoyed having a conversation with someone other than a kid.  LOL.  Kids loved all their out door time.  We came home and some did some more school work.  Others rested w/ a movie.  Got to go get ready for bed.  Soccer is way too early for us tomorrow.  Hope you all have a great weekend. 

Homestead Happenings

I figured I've got a few pics in the camera, might as well see what's happening around this house.   Aka...extra pictures.  enjoy!


You'd think they learn by now.  Puppies still chew.  This was Nik's brand new slipper.  Nice and soft and I got an awesome deal.  URGHH!!!!  It's something they all use in winter here and it's so cold in the house.  Fireplace draft despite covering it with plastic.  


 My little fashionista still loves this hat we got for her when we went to Bulgaria.  Doesn't matter if it's 90 degrees out or not.  She wears it well though.


Nik and Bojan just watching a movie.


A very mad teen shot.  He didn't really want to take the dog.  We swore he could beat the rain.  Out of nowhere, torrential down pour.  He was already up the street.  He was not a happy camper when he got home.  Worse part is, dog didn't even use the bathroom.  He is VERY excited about getting a fence.  


This is what happens when you cover the fruit bowl up and forget there are oranges on the bottom.  Lesson in mold.


Max, spoiling his little sister rotten.  She just adores him.  And this would be why I get hardly any teen shots any more.  Teens and a camera don't mix.


Kids studying science.  We're working on inventors this week.


Studying Eli Whitney so I went and got cotton real quick and put some flax seeds in them.  Had them pick out the seeds to see how long it took and why the machine was useful back then.  They could not imagine having to do a whole room full of cotton all day long.


 Summer and Nik made some more bird feeders.  They love doing this.


My kids have found a new love....flaxseed.  Not sure why.  Hey, at least it's good for you.  Mind you, they still love chips.


I figured a journal entry could be what is your favorite movie and why.  I went to get a shower.  Came back and movies all over the dining room table.  URGHH!


Proud of his work.


Irina helping her sibs tie on the string to hang up the feeders.  


Nik and Logan trying to build a roller coaster.  They LOVE Kinex.  I found these at a yardsale years ago for $5.  They've lost a ton over the years but still build with them everyday.  Need to find more.  Hoping in my yardsaling this season we find some.  Can't afford the new boxes.  Yikes!  


You should see the things they've created with these things  over the years.  Truly is remarkable and does get their creativity going.  Love it.  Locals if you come across some, let me know.  Others have suggested ebay so I'll try there.  Logan and Nik have become fascinated with roller coasters.  It's nuts!  

Well, more tomorrow. Warren is still not home from work.  It's almost 9pm.  And this would be why we can't finish our fence.  Oh well.  We'll figure out something.  Anyhow, we have soccer bright and early tomorrow.  First game at 8:25.  Wake up at 7am on a Saturday for soccer.  Will I really miss this when they're out of the house??  After that, we'll come home, trash to the dump and then heading to an rv show.  Kids are excited.  Well, they'll have a bunch of camping stuff too and we need just a few things and suggestions.  We'll see what all is there.  Getting ideas is always helpful.  After that, come home and it's a few hours worth of fence building.  Got to go.  I have snacks to make for tomorrow's games.  2 kids have snack tomorrow.  Bummer.

Apples, apples everywhere!

As you know, we went to an apple orchard last weekend and went apple picking.  Got 2.5 bushels.  That's bushels people.  Not little buckets.  We are still peeling apples and cooking like crazy.  So, thought I'd share a bit of all our help around here and some of what we've been up to.


Can you believe it starts this full?  24 apples peeled.  I have 2 crockpots I bought for $5  at a yardsale one year.  Best investment ever!  This one has digital timers and all that as well.  Makes it so simple.


After it cooks down, I put it in the mixer.  It's HOT.  


It yielded 5 jars of apple butter.  Best apple butter I've ever tasted!  No exaggeration.  Kids were all in agreement.


I had a pie plate for 14 years.  We received it for our anniversary.  It broke.  Why wouldn't it in a house full of children?  So, when we went to Seagrove last weekend, I splurged and finally bought a new pie plate.  Girls helped me pick it out.  Hopefully, it will last just as long.


The girls getting to work on all kinds of apple stuff.  Apple butter, apple sauce, apple pie, apple crisp and whatever else we can think up.  Tons of apples.  And we're still peeling.


Irina teaching Alyona how to peel and core the apples.


Girls are ready for a batch of applesauce this go around.  Sorry for the background.  It's a poster on how to become President.  Homeschool allows for no neat dining room walls.

Thursday, September 6, 2012

Logan's Endless Birthday

You know, I never did finish this up.  And, have quite a few more posts on his birthday.  Thanks to all who made his first b-day in America so special.  It really did mean the world to him.  So, here goes.


Yana and her friend got him a present.  I see they raided the Christmas wrapping paper but hey, it was wrapped.  And, I actaully don't think it's our paper.  


Logan ready to open gifts and I'm not sure what Max is doing.


He is by far our slowest gift opener...ever!


Do you think he's happy to get another gift.


Still smiling and he hasn't even finished opening them yet.


Just giddy w/ excitement.


How can all this joy come from simply getting him 3 boxes of candy?  


He loved them and shared.  All our kids are actually really good about sharing w/ their sibs even when it's their gift.  That orphanage mentality to share everything fortunately never seems to leave them.  Okay, they all want their own room but other than that, they truly share.


Logan then went with us to soccer and even took the candy with him!  He shared it with us on the field too.  A simple gesture made him feel so wanted.Thank you.  More posts coming on Logan's birthday.  It truly didn't seem to end which I think made it that much more special.You can see the joy in his expressions in the pictures.  He just loved it.

Lots of work ahead of us

When you add kids to your family, you make the best of the space you've got.  Since we can not move, we must make do with what we have and make it work.  Or, die trying.  We have 10 children.  They all are getting older.  5 girls, 5 boys.  When we moved to this home, we had 2 kids.  Yes, 2 of them.  It was approximately 1900 sq. ft.  finished out.  Now, we have roughly 3100 sq. ft.  12 people, 3 dogs, lots of fish and a guinea pig reside here.  Irina and Yana each have their own rooms downstairs.  Upstairs, the 3 young girls share a room.  (bonus room size).  Plenty of space.  The 5 boys currently share a room as well.  About the same size.  However, at this point, there is just too much testosterone in one room!  LOL.  Plus, big age gap between our oldest boy and the youngest boy.  Plan is to move Bojan and Max to the girls' room.  That way, all boys will be upstairs but the oldest 2 will have a much bigger space and not have "little kids" around as they call them.  Girls will move to the garage.  What does our garage look like now?  Take a look.


Yes, I am ashamed to show this picture.  What's happened in here?  Kids.  Throwing stuff in w/ NO order.  


It's a disaster and think the only reason it's been avoided all these years is we simply get angry looking at it.  It is the only room in the house that looks this way w/ the exception of the boys room who simply blame each other.  URGHH!!

This is to be the girls' new room.  It is a finished garage so that helps.  The is the long work we have ahead of us.  But this isn't even the first step.  First, we must build a fence.  We literally only have like 6 posts up.  That's it.  I was hoping by September we'd at least have all the posts up.  At this point, I'd love to hire someone.  I just know we can't afford that.  It's appalling what they charge nowadays.  So, this is a self-install.  Like when you are not homeschooling, going to soccer, going to church, going to clubs, going to work, etc.  It's find the time and put it in when you can type deal.  I HATE this with a passion b/c frankly, everyone needs to be in a new place.  But, it is what it is.  Warren is going to try to take a few days off soon to work on the fence.  Vacation days for him typically unfortunately equal work days or kid has surgery days.  

Anyhow, after the fence is complete, Warren & Max were going to build a shed.  To empty the garage into.  See, years ago, Warren had a PV-544 Volvo.  Old car.  He gave it away despite loving that car b/c he didn't have time to work on it.  Really a fixer upper deal.  The guy we gave it to said he'd give us a shed.  Cool.  Never happened.  Bummer.  So, going w/ the flow, we need to build a shed.  However, I saw a shed at Sam's that might work and not that bad a price compared to building it.  And given the fact that we can't seem to find the time to do the fence, shed would delay this process even more.  Hey, kids have picked out the paint colors.  They're ready.  After the sheds get filled w/ some of the garage stuff above that is not being thrown out or sold, we can then start the transformation of the garage to a girls' room.  Tons of cool ideas for it as believe it or not, it's a very tall room.Can't tell from the shot.  

As you can see, lots of work ahead of us.  Not sure how we're going to pull it off unless we hire Santa's elves.  Seriously.  Almost every single weekend is booked w/ stuff to do.  We are hoping tomorrow evening after dinner we can work some and maybe Saturday evening.  Sunday we have church mid-day and then turn around and Yana & Alyona have to be taken back to church for Youth Group.  I'm glad they all have activities and such but really, for everyone's sanity, I'd like to finish this stuff up.  That and we are truly looking like the redneck house on the block.  Sleds in the yard when it's 90 degrees out.  Just thought I'd share some of the work that lies ahead.  They're not crowded per say, but age gap shows big time up there for the boys.  They've been great sports about it so far but what to help things along.  Hopefully soon, you'll see a completed fence picture.  I feel once that is done, things should move quickly.  The girls' new room as well as the boys will have more room and more beds.  You know, for company...not more kids!  Surely your minds didn't go there!  LOL.  Hey, you never know in this house.  Some house guests stay and never leave.  Look at Yana and Alex.  More posts to come.