Sunday, March 31, 2013

Easter and Springtime Greetings

OK, so we went another two weeks before updating. Hallie had filled in details from last week, but she lost her edits. Anyway, we’ll start with the highlights:

March 18-24

Eliza finished her swimming class on Monday. 

Prior to the class, Landon helped Mike a little in the yard. We got a bunch of old dried out dead plants removed in time for the new blossoms to take their place.

Landon finished his swim class on Wednesday, the first day of spring. Hallie and her friend Jen went out for a bit while Mike put the kids to bed.

Thursday was our basketball-themed day. Hallie took the kids over to Renee’s for an NCAA March Madness party with the Moms’ Club and the moms’ kids. Later on, Landon ended his basketball season with a celebration at the church where the kids play.

When Mike took Eliza to her group speech class on Friday, he and the other grown-ups made their little ones books to help reinforce concepts they are learning in class. Mike made Eliza a “where” book with pictures from the cruise. She may not remember the cruise as she gets older, but we’re going to make sure she is at least familiar with photos of her experiences.

On Saturday we ran a few errands in the morning, then Eliza had to take a nap. Meanwhile, Hallie went to a Drums Alive exercise class. We had breakfast for dinner with Dan and Dorene and their kids. 

Mike got made elders quorum president on Sunday. Never a dull moment in church, that’s for sure. Some of his best leadership opportunities have come at church, so maybe he’ll find good material for his academic work, hmm?

March 25-31

We woke Monday to light snowfall. It covered all the early spring shoots. But we knew that winter was on its way out.

Landon discovered that his Hot Wheels bulldozer was the perfect size to plow the snow.

Eliza dressed up to go see Miss Christina on Tuesday. Mike took her between a doctoral oral examination defense in the morning and his evening class so Hallie could get a little rest after her early work shift. Sometimes the crazy hours are a drag, but we really appreciate the flexibility of Mike’s work schedule on days like this.  

Hallie retrieved the book Mike made last week at Eliza’s speech session at Barnes on Wednesday. He made a flap book. The flaps will need some reinforcing, but it’s a cute idea:

Landon’s preschool class had an Easter party (because they were having Good Friday off).

Eliza's not quite clear what she should be doing. 

The boy knows the right answer.

Here are a few more work samples from both kids: 

Eliza's muddy pig. Not sure why the pig is more red than brown. Kinda morbid.
Ben and Megan's little boy Henry came over to visit in the afternoon. We also had the annual Easter Egg Hunt at Windmill Pointe Park. Landon’s friend from school Elisabeth and her parents joined us for the fun.  

Henry and his mom even joined us. Eliza likes knowing there's someone even smaller than her to help. 

Landon chose not to bring a coat, so he started to get cold and sad.

No coat like this camel!

Dee thought to bring a blanket. Good thing for Landon. 

Dee's blanket plus some running around warmed the boy right back up!

On Thursday, Mike had a dentist appointment before spending the rest of the day writing at his college dean’s house, a grand old home in Indian Village and then teaching his other evening class on campus.

On Good Friday, Dad and the kids slept in a bit (7-ish) and hung out in pajamas while Mom worked at the Neighborhood Club. Good Friday starts a long Easter weekend here. A lot more people here take the day off than we remember them doing in California growing up. Once Hallie got home, Mike got back to writing, but he did take a little time beforehand to show the kids the wonders of the garden. We had beautiful purple and white crocuses blooming in the backyard, and the daffodils, tulips, and irises (and so on) will follow soon.

Saturday felt like the first real day of spring. We had no formal plans (for once) and enjoyed a tranquil day at home. Hallie did run a few errands in the afternoon with Eliza, and Mike and Landon went outside to play. Pretend restaurant morphed into stunt bike riding. 

What’s wrong with this picture? The correct answer is that he put his brakes on too soon and only got a gnarly rather than an epic skid to his credit. Lack of helmet, pajamas in the afternoon, and snow boots (while interesting) are all incorrect.

Mike noticed the new sister missionaries were tracting, so he moved the bike riding out front. Then Dan and the kids came home from their errands and Hallie and Eliza got back from Sara’s in time for the sister missionaries to stop by. Eventually, someone decided we should really take advantage of the sunny weather. We were feeling maybe a bit too optimistic, as we opted to eat outside on the front porch with Dan and Dorene and the kids. We got out some candy and plastic eggs and had an impromptu Easter egg hunt in the front yard. Once the clouds came in and the sun started to set, it got chilly again. Still, warmer days are at hand!

Earlier in the day, we gave the kids a little pre-Easter love from Grandma and Grandpa O: Candy bricks and Wreck-It Ralph.  

Easter Sunday started a bit gray and cool. The Easter Bunny left baskets for the kids. Landon especially enjoyed his helicopter “gun” (launcher). Sometimes those Dollar Tree finds become the biggest hits! Hallie had gotten up really early to make the baked French toast recipe and egg soufflé we had for breakfast. 
The formal shot

The informal shot

The typical interaction shot

After church, we chatted with grandparents and other family. The kids’ sugar rush/spring fever really began to kick in later in the afternoon, so Mike took them outside to play in the front yard. Coincidently, the next-door neighbors were attempting to get their kids to burn off steam too, so the kids had another play date in the warm afternoon sun while Mom finished dinner preparations. Then it was off to bed. The kids have spring break next week, so we’re sure to have many hours spent playing outside, as long as the weather holds. 

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