Monday, May 31, 2010

Random pics of recent happenings

In no particular order...

First, how cute is this? The little man fell asleep on the way home from church. It's hard being a baby. (that's the CD case he's got a firm grip on)

And then, Ewan wanted his picture taken with a drawing of his "secret cave" and a submarine. How this goes with the Bible story of praising God, I do not know.

Here is out "new" living room furniture! We got a sofa, loveseat, recliner, coffee table and 2 end tables off of craigslist. We paid what we probably would have paid for just a sofa. The set is in great condition and is only 3 or 4 months old. The recliner is the "new hottness" with the boys. We have to regulate the amount of time they sit there and how often they make the seat recline (I'm just trying to make the chair last longer than a week). Carina got the old couch-what an awesome bed for a dog! And the two other chairs that were in the living room are inow in the front sitting room wondering if I will keep them.

Here are "the bachelors". I see them several mornings a week when I go out to run. (that's right, I've started running again. I ususally run 3-4 days a week for about 30 minutes) I've seen them in our yard, our neighbor's yard and sleeping in the middle of the street! They crack me up with their quacking and waddling! They usually hang out together. I've taken several photos of the guys, I'm sure making Andy wonder why I am so obsessed with them. They are just ducks.
And that's it. Happy Memorial Day!

Our summer bucket list

Staying awake all night is tough (I'm at work). But, it gives me time to think about what I want to do this summer with the family. Here is our "bucket list" of what I would like to do (all items subject to change at any time).

1. Andy and the boys go fishing
2. Cousins' reunion in Illinois
3. Family vacation to Cincinnati
4. T-ball for Marcus and Cale through YMCA
5. Summer reading program for entire family
6. Piano lessons for the boys, taught by moi
7. a long overdue visit from my sister and her kids-including possible outings to the Children's Museum and Indianapolis Zoo
8. a camp-out, in a tent, maybe just Andy and the boys, maybe just in our backyard
9. Vacation Bible School
10. improve on bike riding skills
11. rollerblading
12. work on learning to swim/fun at the water park
13. Bible memory verses
14. Andy to do the RAIN ride
15. Run, go to parks, play outside
16. Draw, color, invent, create

That's all I can think of for now. Ok, some of the items are kind of gimmies-the boys are already registered for t-ball, we are definitely going to the reunion and VBS-and some are kind of random. I just wanted a list of things to do so that when someone says "I'm bored", I can direct them to a list of activities they can pick from. Will it work? Will we actually complete all our items? Stay tuned.

I think we will have fun this summer.

Saturday, May 29, 2010

a flash from the past-Memorial Day 2003 pics

I'm stalling folks. I should be rearranging furniture so the front sitting room doesn't look like a dumping ground for stuff we can't find a place for anywhere else in the house. But, I was cleaning out/lightening the load of a chest and I found a photo album from 2001-2003 (I am a photo hoarder). And, I found the following pictures. And, I thought it was fitting to post them, since they were taking over Memorial Day weeked 7 years ago (7 years ago!!) Look at how young everyone looks! I love it! So, I thought I'd share them with you. (Thank goodness for the scanner on the printer-these were pre-photo CD's)

Here's Chris and Kim. These photos were taken @ Jerry and Linda's house in Decatur. Savannah and Marie were there, too, just not in these photos.

Ah, the Shaffer boys, looking a little more youthful than they do now...

Oh, a preggo pic of me with Andy. Marcus was born in July of that year. I'm pretty sure I was already feeling huge and felt like not that many clothes fit me well anymore. I do remember that I liked that shirt that I had on-although that was the only preganancy it fit me for.
Thanks for taking that trip down memory lane with me. It's inspired me to find more old Memorial Day photos, or, maybe I'm just trying to stall some more!

It's beginning to look a lot like summer...

Ok, these were actually from a week ago, but the weather here has been great all week. It's been sunny and hot and I acidentally let Ewan burn one morning (yikes). Several days this week, my neighbor and I have had the kids out between our houses running in whatever water feature is filled that day. We've had some great naptimes post-play (a favorite for me!). I'm just excited to get the kids outside to enjoy this weather!

We love our picnic table!

Slip-n-slide fun!

We discovered that Liam loves the slip-n-slide, and the pool, and eating sand. He has no fear of walking in the grass like the other boys did (I may have mentioned that before). I just have to remember to check to see if the cement is too hot so it doesn't burn his lovely baby-fat feet. (We only wear shoes when we go to the park.)
We're going to have fun this summer!

Monday, May 24, 2010

Marcus's spring photo

Here are Marcus's 1st grade spring photo. The photography people really know how to sucker me into buying some of them. The spring photos have the cuter poses and they give you options about which pose you want. The fall photo is just the standard face photo. Of course, I have to buy them, because I have sucker permanently tatooed on my forehead (with invisible ink). One disclaimer: Marcus doesn't actually attend Heritage Christian. His parents let him wear this without thinking that his pictures would be taken that day.

first time fishing

While we were at my cousin's house, the boys got to go fishing for the first time ever. They were super-excited because it is something that Andy was planning to do with them this summer. There was a stocked pond behind Don's house and his son Ryan and myh brother-in-law Eric helped the boys catch a few fish.

I think Marcus is holding his nose in the picture because he realized that fish stink! :-)

Cale caught a fish too!

Saturday trip-Grandma's 95th

On Saturday I loaded up the boys and drove them to Bloomington, Il for my Grandma's 95th birthday party. (Andy had a day full of lacrosse and baseball, so he couldn't go.) It was also a chance to see my brother, Joe, in Illinois for the week from San Diego. The boys did great on the trip-we went there and back in one day. I did leave Ewan's shoes at my cousin's house-oops! We had to stop and get a pair of sandals for him so he would have a something to wear on his feet (and, he's hardly worn the sandals-my kids don't usually wear flip flops-we bought shoes the next day). There was only one moment of breakdown with 10 minutes left on our return trip-it was almost 10pm. But, thanks to snacks and the portable DVD player, no one was too grumpy! Seeing everyone was great. It's fun to see all the little cousins play and Don has tw0 sons who were GREAT with the boys. Following are the obligatory group photos we must have at every family get-together...(thanks to Courtney for these pics I copied off of facebook. she has a nicer camera than I do)

The Spielman siblings...Jim, Joe, me and Bitsy

These next photos are "generation" shots.

The great-grandkids and Grandma-Xander (being held), Ryan holding Abbie, Grandma, Nathan holding Liam, Marcus, Ewan with his eyes covered (too sunny!), Maddie and Cale

The grandkids and spouses-Courtney and Jim, Don, Dan, Eric, me Grandma, Joe and Bitsy

The "kids" and Lanny-Lanny, Aunt Claud, Mom, Grandma, Aunt Eileen

Saturday, May 22, 2010

May 22, 1999

It's hard to believe that 11 years ago, I married my best friend. Who else would have been able to put up with all my crazy :-). I don't know if where we are right now is where we thought we would be in 11 years, but I think it's the right place for us right now. I remember picking this date because I didn't want a June wedding, July was too hot, and Butler football practice started in August. May it was. The actually date was chosen because that was a date that the Scovill Golf Course reception hall was available. Then, the next day, I graduated from Millikin University. The wedding seemed like such a blur. I just remember being so happy the day had finally arrived. I love looking at our wedding photos and posted some for you!

One of my favorite pictures of the two of us. Can I just say that I loved my wedding dress. I loved all the little embroidery on it, and yet, it was still simple.

The entire wedding party. Not to sure why the photographer made us stand in a single line. I didn't have enough experience to say-"hey, how about a different set up?" (From left to right: Andy Heck, Allene Knobloch, Beth Orr, Suzanne Stutz, Elizabeth Spielman, me, Andy, Chris Shaffer, Jeff Shaffer, Carlton Washburn, Jesse Walton, Chris Grimes, Joe Spielman, Jim Spielman, Kyle Osborne, ringbearer Nathan Teichman) And, yes, Andy Heck was my bridal attendant (like a guy bridesmaid). I wanted to include one of best friends from high school, college and work in my wedding.

How happy we look after the wedding! I'm pretty sure I was so tired of standing!

My beautiful cake, made by Mary Sloan from church. I showed her some ideas and she created this! I love all the little flowers and curls. She is very talented!

Chris, Andy, Jeff and Kyle looking tough. They did this same pose at Chris's wedding.

Our first dance. "At Last" by Ella Fitzgerald. After that, I remember a lot of Will Smith songs being requested=some awesome dancing.
And they lived happily ever after....

Friday, May 21, 2010

How to buy 2 sets of bunkbeds for the price of 1

1. Find some bunkbeds on clearance online and order them

2. Examine the bunkbeds when they arrive to find out that the cosmetic damage is actually structurally unsafe damage. These beds can't be built!

3. Call the company. Have your money refunded and order the beds at normal price. On the plus side, you don't have to return the damaged beds and have enough good pieces to make 1 bed.

4. Receive the new beds. Examine the package. The same piece is broken! Call the company. They agree to send a replacement piece.

5. Wait. Wait because the company did not have any replacement pieces in their warehouse. Call the company back. Oh-we found one in another warehouse. It is shipping out today.

6. Receive the replacement part. Make that parts. The company has sent 3 extra pieces. That turns out to be a good thing because duplicate replacement pieces came, but only 1 was not broken.

7. Assembly the beds. Finally! Total assembly is 1 set of bunk beds and 1 extra twin bed. Realize that with all these extra pieces, it you fix one of the broken pieces with a small brace piece (easily done), you will actually have 2 sets of bunk beds!

And, that is our story. We got the beds from a website site call Just Kids Beds. They were great and were did not have any problems with their customer service-just with those headboard/footboard pieces. So glad that's done and the beds look great! I would recommend the site if anyone's in the market for bunk beds!

Our "before" picture. Ewan had gradually moved into Marcus and Cale's room. We thought it was a phase, but he never left. This room was a little too crowded with 2 twins and a toddler bed in it. Time to get the bunk beds.

Marcus and Cale share this set. So far, everyone is happy. Ewan got the extra twin bed, built from remaining good pieces of bunk bed. We still need to go and get an actual twin mattress for Ewan-right now he is using an air mattress. He doesn't seem to mind. There's way more space now that the beds are up. Looking a little more organized in there!

Our new graduate!

After 3 long years, Cale has graduated from preschool! We had the graduation ceremony tonight. It was very cute and all 3 classes sang some songs and told facts about different countries. I only got a little teary-eyed twice as I sat there and saw Cale and Ewan on stage. It's hard to see my babies get older! We had a nice night and the boys were completely wiped out by the time we got home.

Congratulations Cale! You are so smart and a fun boy to be around! You have worked hard in preschool and we know you'll do great in kindergarten!

Ewan got his certificate for preschool too! He will be repeating the Jumpstart class again next year because he is not old enough to be promoted into the next class. Ewan did a great job singing tonight, especially the song "Siyahamba".

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

3 to 2

I just got off a stint of working 3 in a row. For me that means 3 7p-7a shifts in the pediatric icu. And, it was great and everything (until 6a this morning-but it all worked out), but it just reinforced my decision to go back to working just 2 days a week. So I have emailed my director and am waiting for a response. I can't imagine it would be anything but "yes". I'll work my current schedule through July and then hopefully go to 2 days a week. It will make scheduling things at home easier and not as stressful when Andy starts football the first week of August. Watching the boys inhale food, I realize I may always have to work a few days a week to pay for the large amount of groceries they will no doubt consume. But, hopefully going to 2 days will allow me to not be as tired and enjoy being a mom more.

On a totally unrelated note, my kids love rice cakes. I love that they love rice cakes and will ask for those as a snack. They especially like the big ones-a special treat! I bet one day they'll figure out that there's better snack food out there, but until then...

Saturday, May 15, 2010

Just for fun

Just for fun I thought I would post all of the boys' one year photos. I'm always told they all look alike, and you can see similar feature in all of them. There's no denying that they're brothers!





Liam's 1 year photos

Here are the little man's 1 year photos for those of you who haven't seen them yet. I am working on having them out in the mail by Monday-ambitious, I know. Happy viewing!


Typical Saturday. Andy has to work at a bunch of high school sporting events. I'm home with the boys all day. So, I "forced" them to walk to the library and then to the park. And, then I "forced" them to be some photos I was taking. Now, I'm "forcing" Marcus, Cale and Ewan to rest in their room for 1 hour so I can clean, fold laundry and, well, post pictures on here :-). No forcing for Liam, he was ready to take a nap this afternoon. Not too sure what the rest of the day holds.-maybe a movie, maybe some "forced" outside play time.

Fun on the tire swing

Liam likes to ride anywhere in his stroller. I think it's because he gets a snack everytime he gets put in the stroller. Right now, we're into oyster crackers. Rides are currently on hold, since I noticed today that both back tires are practically flat! Sounds like another project for Daddy...

Thursday, May 13, 2010

the laundry room's as good as new

And, here it is! My completed laundry room! Andy worked hard all last week pulling up vinyl tile, laying ceramic tile, painting and then, finally, moving in my "new" washer and dryer. The new coat of paint on the walls definitely helped brighten the room up and covered all the old scuff marks from moving older appliances in and out. And, the tiles the floor seem to make the room look bigger. I'm so happy it's done. The washer and dryer have been working hard since they arrived. I've played a little bit of catch-up with laundry and now I'm washing winter blankets to put away. I just wanted to share...

Andy did a great job on this floor!

Sunday, May 9, 2010