Monday, June 8, 2015

Late May

We're a little heavy on the Caspian pictures.  Annaliese is doing very well, happy as a clam, and spending a lot of time reading, which is less photo-demanding than the activities her brother has been up to.

He has thoroughly taken over the care of the newest generation of chickens.  At this point they had yet to join the rest of the flock int he main chicken house, and Caspian dutifully ran around and caught all 15 of them each evening and put them in their interim house.

Both our babies graduated, Caspian from Kindergarten, Annaliese from first grade.  This is the last of so many firsts. Caspian is in the orange shorts, his sister is sitting on the floor behind him, to the left of the U.S. flag. At the kindergarten graduation they sang songs, the kids recited nursery rhymes in groups of three, and Caspian looked tall and handsome.

Annaliese's first grade ceremony was for awards being handed out.  She spent much of the time playing with her non-boyfriend, and sneaking peaks over her shoulder at me to make sure I was watching.  Alexe was able to sneak out of work for the perfect amount of time to see Annaliese, then had to scoot back to the BTC. 

The awards were read as each kid walked up front.  Annaliese reached the front long before they finished rattling off the awards she had won, and there were chuckles that turned into a little collective gasp when she also won the highest reading rate test for the grade.  A little moment of parental pride took place.  She missed out on the perfect attendance award.

We exchanged stuck out tongues across the gym, and she went skipping back to class.  

The temperature dropped to the 50s, and our Mississippi kids broke out their winter jackets. 

It quickly went back up.

He's a fine specimen.

The grapevines in the planters in front of the Blu Buck Mercantile courtyard are racing up, and one of them has produced a bunch of grapes.

Caspian chilling with his best friend at the pool.  And refueling on animal crackers.

The kids are out of school for the summer.  We're keeping them with us this summer, in between camp and trips, which means they need to come with us as Alexe and I try to carry on with our daily chores.  This day Caspian and I decided to go out to the lake for a boy-date lunch.  (Ever since they realized Alexe and I go on "dates" when we leave them with a babysitter, there is nothing more desirable than a date.) 

The girls were off driving the country roads picking up produce. We grabbed some bbq at a country store and headed out to the camping area.

Caspian carefully dividing dessert.  Rolos.

We took a digestive stroll around the lakeshore, threw rocks and sticks in the water, and then headed back into town to get back to whatever we were doing that day.

Meanwhile Annaliese was rocking it at the BTC.  She takes this so seriously, and according to the chef, is one of the best waitresses.  

Mickey.  One of our favorites.  No matter what's going on, he's always available for a relaxed chat.

Signs of a day properly filled:

We spent a Saturday working on the elementary school playground with a small group of volunteers.  Before the bottom fell out of the sky we installed 30 new swing seats, thoroughly mulched under the swings and other playground equipment, and painted almost all the swing sets and some of the railings on the stairs.  When the rain came it miraculously didn't wash the paint away, and though the playground was suddenly under 3 inches of water, with the help of a tractor the trucks made it out.  We have a few more hours of work to knock this project out.  I have plans with a friend on the school board to rip down the old wood playground and build something 30 years younger.

Annaliese dressed for the work day:

The kids still have the bedtime rule that they can keep their lights on and read as late as they want.  Most nights that means an adorable turning out the lights over a snoozing angel, but since they have decided to move back in together, their reading is sometimes louder than reading should be.  I was headed in to explain some things, and saw this little princess reading to her brother.  Another heart-exploding moment. 

This little man is growing.  Here he is on our custom bed, which is almost 8 ft long.  We were taking a moment to rest in the heat of the day; I dozed and after a series of uncomfortable dreams that included me suffocating in various ways, I woke up with him asleep on my back.  

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