May 21, 2015

Life Lately: Six Weeks in America

We have been back in the States for exactly six weeks, and we're due for a quick update.  

We are currently maximizing family time.  We've made two treks to western Oklahoma to see my parents, aunts, uncles, cousins, and 95-year-old grandma; two visits to the Oklahoma City area for time with my sister, bro-in-law, and their three kiddos; and one trip to Missouri to visit Nick's parents, aunt, uncles, and cousins.  And we're not stopping there!  We're headed back to MO this weekend to spend Memorial Day with my fun-loving in-laws.

When we're actually in Tulsa (which isn't all that often), we visit local parks (splash pad on 41st & Riverside!), eateries (Mary's! The Brook! Braums!), libraries (helloooo Brookside), shops (two words: Super Target), museums (Children's and Woody Guthrie), festivals (Mayfest!), and friends (too many wonderful people to count).  It's so fun to experience and re-experience all that Tulsa has to offer!

While we wait on our house, we're making it work in an apartment.  It's not bad, but we're very ready to get into our house.  Thankfully we close in exactly one week.  Eeeeeeee!  I. Cannot. Wait. 

After we get the keys to our house we will have just under a week to clean, paint, and prepare for our furniture to be delivered in two weeks from today.  I'm sure it will take us a while to get unpacked and organized, but it will feel amazing to get all of our things in one place again.  The thought of being settled (finally!) is so comforting.  We all do a pretty good job of making the best of these transitional times, but being homeless for almost three months takes its toll.  Yeesh.

So that's where we are as a family.  Individually we've had some memorable moments lately.

Hipster Glasses, Library Books, Fire Balls, and Leaf Blowers

This kid.  She kills me.

Miss Ella has been reading 20+ books each week.  The ladies at the local library know us already.  By name.  And all that reading pays off.  We sent her to school for a day and they told us she's a first grader who reads at a level just shy of most seventh graders.  Woah.

She got to help Grandpa with Science Day at BFDC.  Here is my first grader holding a flaming ball of newspaper with tongs.  Amazingly, no one was burned.  Not even so much as a singed eyebrow.  I was sitting in the stands cringing in spite of my dad's assurances that he had it totally under control.  (Sure you did, Pops.)

Later the same day, Nana showed Ella  how to operate a leaf blower.  Between the fire balls and the lawn machinery, Ella now thinks she is practically a grown up.  For the record, this is the same child who always fails to flush the toilet.  Which is to say she has a way to go to reach adulthood.

One Day, Two Teeth, Ten Dollars

Kate has had two wobbly teeth for what seems like ages.  One of them was so loose it had turned grey.  (Sick.)  Then one morning while I was in the shower I heard screaming (jubilant excited shouting, not the scary kind of screaming...all moms know the difference) and Kate came in to show me that one tooth had come out.  (Not the grey one.  That sucker was still hanging on as shown in the picture above.)

Later that same day, Uncle Ty pulled Kate's remaining dead, grey, completely disgusting tooth.  It was so wobbly she felt zero pain.  Didn't even know it was out.  Kate lost  her first two teeth on the same day.  I've never heard of that happening from natural causes. 

Apparently Kate had heard a rumor that the Tooth Fairy leaves you twice as much money for losing two teeth in one day.  The Chickasha Tooth Fairy is generous on a regular day, but those two teeth earned Kate a whopping $10!  (Btw, Ella is furious because the English Tooth Fairy only left her £1 for her first tooth.  Cheapskate.  Maybe we got the Scottish Tooth Fairy by mistake...)  Kate is pictured above dressed and ready to go shopping.  She's got $10 burning a hole in her pocket.

And She Knows How to Spell It

This girl has experienced a HUGE verbal explosion lately.  She suddenly started speaking in sentences and using vocabulary that we had no idea she even knew.  Daddo at work.  Annie's Let It Go book.  Mama put shoes on.  I hold pink ball.  Penny at Nini's house.  Annie wet...get towel.  

Annie is also a stinker deluxe.  We've had record rains lately which causes huge puddles right outside our apartment door. Two seconds after I stopped the video above, Annie went belly-first into the muddy ditch water.  Oh my word.  It was disgusting.  Added to that, Nick and I are both sporting scratches on our faces delivered by the fingernails of our lastborn.  I also have a strong suspicion that she ate dog poop today.  So yeah.  She's a handful.

Annie has also mastered all 26 letter sounds!  The Letter Factory is the only television show she will sit through, and it shows.  This girl sees letters everywhere and shouts out their sounds at the top of her voice.  Now if we could only get her to count and learn her colors.  There are videos for that, right?!

I was under the impression that Annie knew absolutely nothing about the Frozen phenomenon since Ella and Kate suddenly went right off of it about eight months ago.  Boy was I wrong.  I learned that she was OBSESSED with Elsa and Anna when she threw a MASSIVE FIT in the middle of Dollar General in my hometown.  (Btw, my hometown has a Dollar General now!  BF is moving up in the world!)  Girlfriend got a Frozen book and two Frozen bags out of the deal, teaching her that it totally pays to throw a temper tantrum in which you scream "Leh Lit Go!" at the top of your lungs.  She's not only singing like Elsa, she's acting like her too.  I predict that her sisters will adore her even though she doesn't deserve it and that she will one day rule a kingdom in Norway.

So that's what we've been up to lately.  Life goes on while we live in an apartment and burn up the 300 mile stretch of interstate between western Oklahoma and southwest Missouri.  In one week we will have a home, in two weeks we'll have a home with furniture in it!  Exciting times ahead!!

May 17, 2015

52 Project: 20/52

Week 20
May 11 - 17, 2015

Top:  We spent the week in Burns Flat and these girls went on their first ever ride in an American school bus!  Thank you, Jason!  :)

Bottom:  Talking to Daddo on the phone with a very dirty face.
Western Oklahoma living, ya'll.  (Trousers optional.  Obviously.)

May 10, 2015

52 Project: 19/52

Week 19
May 4 - 10, 2015

Top:  Awesome morning with friends at the Children's Museum.
The girls were so excited that the slides were made of TAPE!

Bottom:  Teensa wearing "Mommy's shoes...high high!"
I own two pairs of shoes with a heel of any sort.  This is one.

May 3, 2015

52 Project: 18/52

Week 18
April 27 - May 3, 2015

Top:  A gorgeous day at one of the lovely parks along Riverside Drive.
My oh my, how I love Tulsa.

Bottom:  Littlest lady trying on her daddy's new steel toed boots.
FYI, steel toed boots are requisite attire for all Oklahomans.  ;)

April 26, 2015

52 Project: 17/52

Week 17
April 20 - 26, 2015

Top:  My three adorable humans plus my precious fur baby.
That little one in the middle is trouble, I tell ya.

Bottom:  We call these her Missouri goggles.  :)

April 19, 2015

52 Project: 16/52

Week 16
April 13 - 19, 2015

Top:  Visiting Burns Flat to see Nini and Grandpa.
These kids ADORE their grandparents!

Bottom:  Teensa's first attempt at wearing pigtails. 
Love those curls.