Monday, June 23, 2008

Berry Pickin'

We love to go to the park. It is one of the things I truly appreciate about raising my kids in the city: there is an endless supply of parks and playgrounds to visit, and they are usually well-populated with potential playmates and mommy friends. We visit playgrounds several times a week.

Unfortunately, they do sometimes get boring. So, in an effort to mix things up a little and keep my kiddos from getting bored (my main priority this summer), I'm trying to do at least one other fun outing each week. This week, we went berry pickin'.

Hilariously, my friend Megan and I decided to join our families together on this endeavor. She also has 3 boys ages 4 and under. We both knew it was a crazy idea, but decided that it sounded better than staying home in our sweats with our kids in front of Wiggles videos all day.

So, off we went, camera in hand. There is a great farm in Gaithersburg, MD, and their strawberries were just barely still in season.

Unfortunately, I only managed 3 photos while at the farm! No surprise, really, but I had higher hopes. It was hectic, but we all had a great time and actually brought back quite a few berries, plus some other locally-grown goodies from the farm's little store.

One of the reasons I thought this would be such a fun event was because as far as my kids are concerned, our food comes from a store. I think Sam understood the concept of food growing on plants, but as soon as I bent down and showed Levi a ripe berry under a leaf he shouted, "staw-be!" For the next two hours I heard "mo' staw-be" many, many times. I think I even heard it in my sleep that night.

After filling our buckets and a picnic lunch, we were ready to head home. Once there, we reveled in our bounty.

(This is Levi with a mouthful.)

The kids sampled many of the berries.

I made sure to secure several for later, of course. Unfortunately the berries were a little on the tart side. Nothing a little sugar couldn't help. ;)

Sam helped me make shortcake.

Dinner included enchilada casserole, sweet corn from the farm, and generous helpings of strawberry shortcake. Yummmm.

We'll be back for blueberries next week!

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

And Some More Catching Up

Here are a few moments from June:

Sam often wants to "play" the adult games that are in our closet. One day a few weeks ago he talked Mike into playing RISK with him. I have a feeling this won't be the last time.

Mom and Dad came to keep us company and help me with the kids while Mike was away at a conference. Not only were they helpful, but I seriously felt like I was on vacation while they were here! They did my laundry, helped with the kids, let me sleep in and sent me off to go shopping by myself. Such luxury! And the kids loved having them around, of course. Thanks, Mom and Dad.

While they were here and after Mike returned home, we christened the swimming pool.

(For some reason blogger is turning my pictures the wrong way. Wish I could fix that!)

Daddy and Sam jumped right in, but Levi wasn't game. Most of the time he liked the idea but ran away each time we encouraged him to get in. I spent most of the time with him like this:

By the end of our pool time he was willing to put his feet in and play on the shallow first step. The next day we took him right in and popped him in his little inflatable boat before he had time to think about it. He had a moment of shock (at being the water, wet and just a smidge cold), but then couldn't stop saying "I in a pool! I in a wawer!"
And here is my proud boy on his last day of Pre-K. When I picked him up from school that day I said, "Sam, you're all done with Pre-K!" I must have been pouting a little, because he said, "Why are you sad?" Of course I didn't say that sometimes I wish he wouldn't grow up, that I've enjoyed age 4 so much with him and don't want him to change. But instead I said, "I'm not, buddy, I'm really proud of you." Which is true.

And last but not least, I'm going to try something new: a video! Here is the Godzwa family, chilling at home this past Sunday. Sam has been telling this joke... see if you can catch the punch line.


Nate reached the 6 month mark on June 11th. I think this has probably been the fastest 6 months of my life! Nate has grown so fast. Most of the time I am trying not to wish away his babyhood; it is a lot of hard work these days, but I know I'll miss it when the kids are bigger.

Nate is such a sweet baby. He is very happy, rarely complaining of much even though I am constantly switching him from bouncy seat to exersaucer to baby swing to floor in the effort to cook a meal or dress another child or eat a meal. He always has a smile in return for a little attention, and has an easy giggle, too!

He rolled over for the first time last week, but still only endures tummy time for a few minutes before he beckons me to turn him over.

I'm eagerly anticipating the day when he can sit up on his own, unattended. He's on his way, but still a bit wobbly. We practice each day with the boppy pillow for support. Note the look of concentration.

He's also begun eating baby food. He's already accustomed to a handful of foods: bananas, oatmeal, pears, peas, peaches, sweet potatoes. He really loves eating!

Bananas are his favorite.

Here is what he thinks of avocados:

He's growing so fast! But something took place two nights ago that I've only read about and heard in folklore: he slept 8 hours on his own, without being sleep-trained! Last night he woke up, but didn't need to be fed for 8 hours again! We're not there yet, but it's the light at the end of the tunnel.

I can't wait for him to sleep through the night, but I'll certainly miss my baby when he's grown.

Wish This Had Worked Better

One day in May I was fiddling around with my camera settings, trying to figure out what they all do. I snapped this picture in the process. Wish it was in focus!

Memorial Day 2008

I know I'm late, but hey, better late than never. :)

We had a fabulous time on Memorial Day this year with our friends Anita, Franklyn, Symon and new little Elsa. They have a canoe at a local boat dock and invited us to join them to take it out.

Sam was in his element. He was decked out in his "cool" hat and "cool" sunglasses and life jacket, and was ready to go (after I slathered him up with sunscreen).

Levi was not a fan of his life preserver, but he only had to endure it for about 15 minutes while we were on the dock. He, Nate, Anita, Elsa and I stayed behind to have a snack and enjoy the beautiful weather on the shore.

Sam and Symon rode in the middle of the canoe while the dads took stern and bow.

Off they went to circle Roosevelt Island.

I'm not sure what we were doing here, but it's rare that Mike and I are both in the picture together, so I thought I'd include it. :)

And Nate and Elsa got to bond for the first time. Do you think they're flirting?

Friday, June 13, 2008

Thoughts on the last day of school

I asked Sam today (his first day of summer vacation) what he would miss about school. He didn't come up with anything, but then I thought of a more interesting question: what wouldn't he miss? He looked me in the eye and said, "I don't like being away from you so much. Do you know why? Because I love you."

That makes it all worth it.

By the way, I realize it has been ridiculously long since my last post. You see, my hubby is now on his summer schedule, which means he holds relatively normal work hours as opposed to the crazy hours he works during the school year. Hence, I now have a life, and don't have much time to post. Which is a good thing for my life, but not for my blog. But a more thorough update is coming soon!