October 25, 2006
is the Halloween carnival and trunk-or-treat at church. The kids are
very excited. This year Zach is an old lady monster with a baby on
'her' back (an example can be seen at the Family Fun magazine website)
Gabby is a
cowgirl, Ethan is a mad scientist, Alisabeth is a bunny, and Dylan is,
what else, a little devil. This will probably mark the last time Zach
dresses up...soon it will be that awkward age between being a kid and
getting to go to teen dances dressed up again.
9:53 am pdt
Gabby got to make a cute gingerbread house with her friends from
church, and Mark was inspired to make one as well. Both turned out
We are done with our Primary program, and all the kids did an excellent
job. Our family song went well, and Gabby's song in Spanish sounded so
pretty. Next year even Alisa gets to be involved, though picturing her
trying to work up the nerve to speak into a microphone boggles the mind.
We've finished raking the leaves and digging up the garden. I *guess*
the snow can start flying anytime now. Speaking of flying, Mark's Mom
is on her way home from Italy and we can't wait to hear about the trip
and see the pictures.
Dylan has a little cold again, but seems to be handling it fine. It
doesn't seem to be spreading to anyone else in the family so far, and
we'll cross our fingers. It has given him some excema on his cheeks,
but that doesn't seem to bother him as much as it does me. Hope you all
have a safe and happy Halloween!
October 12, 2006
is it cold! As you can see, like much of Minnesota, Glencoe had its
share of snow today. When I first looked out the window yesterday and
saw it snowing, the girls had two very different reactions. Gabby said
"What? Awww...not snow!" (Apparently walking outside after swimming
lessons when it's cold is not fun.) But Alisa said "Yes...I love snow!"
Dylan likes to stand on the porch and just watch it fall. I like snow,
but wish it would be around from Thanksgiving until Valentines Day and
then be done. Anyone know of an area of the country that is like that?
2:39 pm pdt
Gabby recently had 'the talk' (regarding the 'birds and the bees'.) She
took it very well, and we managed to make it both scientifical and
spiritual. The next day I asked Zach if she said anything to him, and
he said "She said it is a memory that will haunt her forever." (Yeah,
right!)She actually comes up with these funny quips quite often.
Yesterday, while watching the Live! With Regis and Kelly travel trivia
question a lady from Salt Lake City was on, who got to pick a number
which corresponded with audience members who were assigned numbers and
then both win a prize. I told the kids that people usually pick numbers
for how long they've been married, or their age. I said "I'd pick 26,
because I was married on the 26th." The lady then picked 22, and Gabby
said "She's from Salt Lake City? I bet she picked the number of kids
she has!" I could not stop laughing, which is funny, if not exactly
accurate, I am sure!
The kids began their art classes for the year. They are studying the
early American History period. They will meet bi-monthly until May.
Today they came home with an Indian Talking Feather, which the Indian's
used around campfires to give one person the right to talk. Sounds like
they had a lot of fun.
Tomorrow Zach and Mark are going on the final scout campout of the
year. This one will get Zach to First Class. He also has a couple of
merit badges in the works, Cooking and Family Life, both Eagle
required. This weekend is the kid's Primay Program at church, where
they show what they've learned all year with a presentation during the
main meeting. I'll be glad it's over! Our family (minus Mark, Dylan,
and Alisa) is singing a song at the beginning, each of us taking a solo
part and then singing together. Ethan will be glad THAT'S over.
October 3, 2006
had a wonderful time on our little vacation. Valley Fair was extrememly
busy, as the usual Boston Scientific employees (and their families)
were invited, and also the Guidant employees and their families were
invited. Mark had to wait in line for over 30 minutes for Power Tower,
which is normally a very quick line. The only ride I had the patience
for was the Hydroblaster, which got me soaking wait, but no lines! I
did wait in line for 30 minutes for a corn dog for Alisabeth, only to
find out there would be a 10 minute wait for them. Panda Express' line
was even longer, but we had to use our 'Valley Fair Bucks' on
2:22 pm pdt
It turns out that Alisabeth doesn't really like to swim, and she
doesn't really like to go on rides. We should have left her at
grandma's house where she would have had more fun. Dylan had a blast
though. Gabby managed to go on Steel Venom. The Mall of America was
pretty fun, though the drive their was an adventure. We had no idea 494
had a detour, so we got off at a different exit and mangaged to find
the mall via side streets. We came home to a street and yard full of
beautiful falling leaves. I love this time of year.
Zach's band teacher came to talk to me today. He wants to move Zach up
to 7th grade band because he is too far ahead of the other students.
Gabby starts Girl Scouts tomorrow. Other than that, nothing else is
this past week has not been fun at the Foede house. We all (with the
exception of Mark) were hit pretty hard with colds that lasted about 10
days. Just as we were getting over that hurdle, we got hit with some
type of virus. Gabby was first, and then Alisa, and then Zach, and
finally Jen. It seems that Mark, Ethan, and Dylan were able to dodge
this bullet. The virus manifested itself in various ways that we won't
go into here. Let's just say that some had it one way, some had it
another, and some had it all. Yummy!
4:06 pm pdt
Gabby and Ethan have begun their swimming lessons for the fall. I am
impressed with their performance. At the beginning of the last level
Gabby cried, worried that she wouldn't be able to do the skills. She
learned them (that's why they call them lessons!) and then started out
with the same fear for level 3. I reminded her that she had the same
fear last time, and she'd do fine. Well, she hopped in and started
back crawling and front crawling like I'd never seen before. The next
week both she and Ethan are jumping off the diving board and swimming
to the sides on their own. Gabby's form is just beautiful in the water,
though she needs to learn to relax a bit. Ethan still doggy paddles,
but I was very proud of him. Swimming lessons turned into science as we
discussed water displacement and why frantic strokes contain less
momentum then slow, sure strokes. Zach also did well on his private
lessons. Diving (off a board and to the bottom for rings) still eludes
him, but his strokes definitely improved.
Mom and Dad Foede are taking the boys this weekend while Mark and I
enjoy the Mall of America and his annual work party at Valley Fair.
This is my first vacation in 2 years, and even though it's only 2
nights, and 3 kids (one still nursing, one who wants to go to Valley
Fair, and one who'd rather swim at the pool) decided they wanted to
come along, it should be relaxing for me, and hold me over until the
cruise in January. And hey, since I lost 10 pounds with the virus, why
not take advantage? (*rolling eyes*)
Homeschooling is going quite well so far. We are really enjoying our
studies of the middle ages, and Zach seems to love his new science
program. He is also finding Algebra to be more fun than he
though. Alisabeth wanted to learn to read so badly, that we began
her lessons from the book 'Teach your child to Read in 100 Easy
Lessons" She is on lesson 13, and is doing great. Dylan, as
always, is a bundle of energy. He can pretty much imitate any word and
is beginning to use them frequently on his own. He also says
"Here you go" and "Gross" (This one coming from his frequent
nose wiping during the cold period!) He loves to play with blocks and
color and crash things together.
A Few Updates
Hi everyone, we
hope this update finds you well.
9:11 pm pdt
Tonight Zach had his Boy Scout Court of Honor. He was awarded the
Tenderfoot and Second Class ranks, along with 10 merit badges. 5 he
earned at camp, and 5 at home. He is currently working on 2 merit
badges, and will be adding 2 Eagle required badges as well. The 2 Eagle
required he had set as his goal for the next board of review. We are
proud of him. I missed him and Mark dearly while they were at scout
camp, and next year we plan on attending family camp while Zach is with
his patrol. As an 11 year old, he needed his Dad with him, and I didn't
want to camp alone with the 4 kids, but next year a scout leader will
suffice. He is on track to earn his Eagle by his 14th or 15th birthday,
well ahead of the time when most boys lose interest in scouting because
of '2 chemicals...gasoline and perfume' (as succinctly put by a
previous Eagle scout in our patrol, now serving a mission in Las Vegas.)
The kids all did well in their swimming lessons, each passing their
levels. They are signed up again this fall to get as comfortable in the
water as they can before our cruise in 4 months. They didn't offer
level 4 for Zach because most of the teachers are college students, but
we have him in private lessons which is working out nice for him. He
has good technique, but needs to learn his breathing better. He takes
his breath as he is supposed to, but forgets to blow out the breath
under water and so he starts gasping for air when he shouldn't need to.
He also has a problem swimming under the water, and tends to look like
a bobber in the water, which is unusual. Usually the skinny kids sink
to the bottom, and he does the opposite. We are confident he'll get it!
We are waiting on one grammar book for Zach before we begin school.
Everything else is ready and waiting. We have the schedules set up, but
we aren't in a hurry. We schooled until the beginning of August, so we
don't mind the break for now. Alisabeth is very excited about learning
her letters and numbers and reading. Zach is excited about the new
Science program we are doing, Apologia, which goes through Advanced
Physics. He is in Algebra this year, and I am excited to re-learn
everything with him. We will be continuing our study of French and
Latin, and history will be the Middle Ages this year, after finishing
Ancient times last year. Zach will again be in band, and they are all
signed up for an art class throughout the year as well.
I got my hair cut about a week ago (September 1st). The initial cut in
the pony tail was 14" and was donated to Locks for Love. Another 5-6
inches was cut off and then it was highlighted. It is a short, flippy,
razored cut that I am having a lot of fun with. Mark likes it too!
Dylan is doing great. He is settling down a little bit, but still
climbing on things he shouldn't, escaping locked doors, and just too
cute for words. He is talking very well, likes to eat and blow bubbles
from a straw into someone's drink, and sits in his car seat and
Gabby and Ethan are also doing very well. They were scared of swimming
lessons at the beginning, but learned quickly and are more excited for
this go-around. Both the kids joined Zach outdoors in the tent for much
of August trying to pass off the 20 nights of 'camping' for a merit
badge. Next time I'll tell the story of freaking Gabby out. For now I
should sign off!
August 14, 2006
Up and Running
decided that adding to the website was getting to be too much trouble.
It is much easier to update family information in a blog format, rather
than trying to figure out the html codes and etc. Eventually I'll have
to learn how to update the 'favorite links', 'about me', 'recommended
books' and add a homeschooling section. For now, the only updates to
speak of are that Zach and Mark are at boy scout camp for the week and
I already miss them. The kids also finished swimming lessons last week,
each one progressing to the next level. (But anyone want to borrow Zach
and teach him how to dive?) We went on a camp out with our church and
had a great time. The weather was perfect, and we came home exhausted
from all the activity. I have all my schooling purchases done with the
exception of science and grammar for Zachary.
5:06 pm pdt