Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Bicycling For Two

We've been having some busy and exciting times around here, and I have to start with some biking fun. About a week and a half ago, Dominic asked to have the training wheels taken off his bike. So one night Daddy did so, and then we saw a sight. Not only were the wheels of his bike both flat, the bike was ridiculously small for him. So the next day, Daddy stopped at the store over his lunch break and after dinner we all went outside. Catherine and Joseph were excited for Dominic. Where is Dominic? He was so excited, he was waiting in the garage with his eyes closed!

He took it for a test drive. Anthony was very interested in what Dominic was doing:

This is easy!

And Joseph was ready to hop on Dominic's old bike, which is now his new bike!

So now the moment of truth:

There he goes!

And a crash!

Another try:

Off he goes again.

Daddy gives him a push. Notice that I volunteered for camera (and Anthony) duty. :)

And another crash. There were lots of those at first. But Dominic really got the hang of the whole balance thing very quickly.

Most of the time he came up smiling and determined to get on again and learn to ride:

However, on his final run of the evening, he ran into a tree. You know how it takes a little longer to get the whole steering thing when learning to ride a bike. So after consoling and some first aid, he was ready to show off his battle scars:
And I have to report that after a few days of practice, Dominic was able to ride several times in a row around the house and after a few more days, he was able to get his bike started by himself, and now he can, for the most part, ride where he wants to go! He was a determined young man and he seems so grown up now riding his bike around with Catherine.

Now on to sweet little Anne. When she saw Dominic riding across the yard that first evening, she decided she wanted to try as well. So Daddy took off her training wheels and helped her get started. After a time or two, she was not liking that feeling of being unbalanced and definitely not liking the falling part. She made it clear she did not want Daddy to help her anymore and she played around for a while:

She did not take both feet off the ground again:

In the end, it was clear she didn't want to learn to ride her bike yet(i.e. did not want to go through the falling down/getting up/try again process), so the training wheels are back on. She'll try again later!

No, not quite ready for bike riding:

Sunday, August 29, 2010

This Picture Is So...Joseph!

It makes me laugh every time I see it.

Saturday, August 28, 2010

We Have Sure Gotten Our Money's Worth Out Of This One!

This is the swing set that we bought when Catherine and the twins were little, when we lived at the other house. It has been used and abused for probably four years now. They do tricks and flips off the side, go across the top like monkey bars, climb up and down every which way, and pretend all kinds of things using it.

It is fun to watch the four "big" kids play on it together.

They can all swing(or glide) on it at the same time:

They have also learned that they can't all go the same way at the same time or the legs of the swing set will come up and then go down with a big thump.

We'll have to get out the baby swing and attach it, so Anthony can get in on the fun!

Friday, August 27, 2010

I Can Never Get Enough...

...of these cute baby pictures! Look at those cheeks:

The kids call this Anthony's "funny face." Anthony discovered he can tuck his lower lip beneath his upper lip and the kids laugh hysterically every time they see him do it.

Well, I'll just blow some raspberries too, while I'm at it!

Look, Mom, I'm in charge here and I need to be entertained!

Let's see, I think I'll sample this arm:

Two little heads:

Joseph and his "Anth'ny." Somehow he turns Anthony into a two syllable name.

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Let's Go For A Ride

This is a fun way to eat...

...watermelon! From the garden, of course.

Anthony already loves to ride with Dan on the lawn mower.

There they go, off into the sunset!

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

What Are Trees For...

...but to climb!

I did not know they could climb this tree. See Dominic back there?

Catherine enjoys the view from between the leaves:

Time for the dismount:

A little help from the bench:

No big deal, Mom! Now it is Dominic's turn:

Friday, August 20, 2010

The Day It Finally Cooled Off

Last Sunday, the very long, hot spell was finally broken. It had been several weeks at least of temps above 100 degrees, with the heat index often 105-110 degrees. It was awful and it felt like we were living in a cave, keeping the blinds shut all of the time, only emerging first thing in the morning, when it was often already 80 degrees and very humid. So on that day of relief (which was the Feast of the Assumption), when it began to rain, Dan let the kids out to play. They went a little crazy and quickly got soaked:

A wet Dominic climbed into the back of the truck. I'm not exactly sure what he is doing.

Anne happily rode her bike in the rain. Wheeee!

Anthony came out to enjoy the cooler weather:

Joseph got a ride in the stroller, which is rare these days.

And oh, what a ride he got! If I got this video on here correctly, you will see Dan running with the stroller (with Joseph in it, not Anthony), chasing the other kids around.

Year Of The Cantaloupe

Some of the garden did not do well this year, like zucchini and beans, but the winner of Best Producer in the 2010 Garden has got to be the cantaloupe. (Cucumbers and peppers are the runner-ups.) Our current cantaloupe count is at 73 picked! We've been picking 6-10 of them every couple of days. There are still 20+ out there.

So naturally, when you have that many cantaloupe, you can't possibly eat them all, so you give some away and then you look for things to do with them. I've cut some up and frozen the chunks in containers. Then I found a recipe for Cantaloupe Bread! It is pictured below and wow, is it moist and tasty! It doesn't taste like cantaloupe, though, and I did not put on the praline glaze that the recipe called for. So now I have cut up more of them, pureed them, and frozen the puree for later bread-making.

Then, can you guess what these are?
If you said Pickled Cantaloupe, you are right! They look pretty, don't they? I found the recipe in the Ball preserving book, which has all kinds of interesting recipes. They have a spicy (i.e. cinnamon, cloves,etc.), vinegary, sweet (you add sugar) taste. Not too much like cantaloupe, but they are good! The kids liked them.

Five Months And A Little

I've been busy around here with produce from the garden, planning school, and taking care of the little ones, but now it is time to catch up! Anthony turned 5 months earlier this week and here he says, "It's about time to get me posted on here!"

When Anthony is happy, he has the cutest smiles:

He loves to be outside and he is getting close to being able to sit up by himself:

I think he is about 17.5 pounds now, so he is slowing down a little:

He is not a very good sleeper, but we are managing. None of our boys were good sleepers as babies and each one does worse than the one before. But it is all worth it when you look at that little face:

Anthony usually sits in here when we are eating, at least for a while. In another few weeks, he might get to try eating a little food!