Friday, December 12, 2008

Rachel posing in her Thanksgiving dress with the red tights she insisted on wearing. She tried to talk me into letting her wear these red tight when she wore a dress to school the other day, which didn't match at all - she didn't care she wanted to wear the red tights. She was very happy to be able to wear them on Thanksgiving, much to Aunt Katie's disappointment.

Pumpkin carving day. The boys liked it. Rachel preferred to color her pumpkin with markers.

The gang before heading out for Trick or Treat.

My little Cinderella

Crazy hair day at school for Nick - he's so cute!

One morning the kids were eating breakfast and I thought Michael swallowed his spoon, he started sputtering and making all this comotion. Here there were several deer in our back yard. It looked like a mom and 3 babies. A week or so later Michael saw the Daddy deer - he knew it was the dad because it had horns. It is really cool to see them - we are such city folks, trying to get accustomed to country living.

Pumpkin Farm

In October we went to the Gale Pumpkin Farm. A tradition we do every fall. We take a hayride to the pumpkin patch where we pick out and cut our own pumpkins off the vine. They also have a little train ride the kids look forward to. I think this might be Nick's last year for the train, he's getting too big to even get in the thing.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

I know what you are thinking, anyone who teaches computers should be a little more diligent with her blog...
I could come up with a zillion excuses, 3 children & a dog, nearing the end of the semester at school with exam creation looming over my head, creating calendars for 15+ family members, creating other Christmas items, blah blah blah. In the end I just haven't sat down and done it. I have halloween pictures on my camera I haven't downloaded yet, if that gives you an indication of how behind I am.
I can see the light at the end of the tunnel though and I hope in the next week or so I will get to this and many other projects so check back, there may even be some pictures posted.
Happy Turkey day just in case I don't return in time...

Monday, September 29, 2008

Rachel's 1st Day of Preschool

My baby girl went to preschool. That was a hard day for mom! Rachel loves school. She goes two days per week and is really mad when she discovers that it's not a day she goes to school. On this particular day MaeMae had bought her her first-day-of-school outfit, which of course had a princess crown on it. She insisted on wearing her "clipity clop" shoes, which did not go well with her outfit, but I was not going to go into that battle on her first day and make her cry. The teacher came out at the end of the first class and said they had a really good day and no one cried but I had to add "expect for the moms". It so hard to believe that on that fateful Mother's day 5 years ago when we discovered we were blessed with this little surprise I would be sending her off to school so soon, it seems like I just got used to the idea of having another baby!

The boys' first day of school

The firt day of school for the boys. Michael is in 1st grade now and Nick is in 3rd. The morning started out so good, everyone woke up nicely, no one was grouchy, we got ready, ate breakfast donned the backpacks and were ready to go out the door 20 minutes prior to the bus arrival time, according to what the letter had said from the school - WRONG. When we walked out the door Nick says "Mom the bus is here!" My reaction when I see the bus way down the road with its red lights on-- "RUN!!" So the picture above is being taken while we were running for the bus, I am even in flip flops - not good running shoes. I cried the whole walk back that I didn't get any good pictures before they left, so I took some after they got home. Morale of that story, never go by what the letters from the bus garage say, they are ALWAYS wrong.
I can't believe the boys are as old as they are. I was walking the other morning and it just hit me like a ton of bricks - OMG I have a 3rd grader, how can I have a son that old already?

Bike Race

Rachel won second place in the bike race this year, she was so excited.

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Catching Up

I know, I know, it's been forever since I have posted. My friends at Thursday coffee reminded me of this so I will try to catch up since the last post.

One of the big events that happened in May was Nick took his first communion. I still can't believe I have a son old enough to be taking communion already!

The balloon pictures pictures are after a trip to see Slider from the Cleveland Indians at Heartland Point. The car was so full of balloons there was barely enough room for the kids. I never did see Nick or Michael on the ride home, but I could hear them giggling so I knew they were in there somewhere in the sea of balloons.

Another big event in May is that my Mom took me to Las Vegas for four days for my birthday. We stayed at Cesar's Palace and had an absolutely wonderful time! We went to see the Blue Man Group, which was so awesome and I would highly recommend this show to anyone. It was hilarious. We also saw Cirque de Soleil. The performers athletic ability was unbelievable. I got hooked on roulette and wished I had lots of disposable money to play, but I played sensibly and walked away from the trip ahead about $50. At one point I had my dad on the phone with me and he was playing remotely from Ohio and he won $40 - he's so lucky when it comes to gambling.

June brought on our family vacation to Surf Side Beach South Carolina. It was a really great week and just when we settle into a routine it's time to go home. It's a lot of work to get ready and when you get home, but it sure is fun to get away and watch the kids run on the beach. The boys got skim boards this year and they were both actually quite good with them. We vacationed with our good friends and their four children so there was always something going on between our two condos. We surprised the boys with Nintendo DS games as an early birthday present for them on the ride down. Nick has been wanting one of these for over a year and he was so excited I can't even tell you. I thought at one point he might jump out of his skin. It is so fun to get them stuff they get so excited over. I know, they are spoiled.
Can you tell Nick was surprised?

July brought going back to work for me a couple of mornings a week and spending a lot of time at the city pool or as Rachel would say "the beach". July also brings the one year anniversary of Grammy Lyon passing which means in six weeks it will be a year that Grandpa Chiz has been gone. I can't believe it's been a whole year, I still cry for both of them. Sometimes I wonder if I will ever get through a whole week without tearing up. Doesn't seem likely.

Next week Nick will turn 9 and Michael will turn 7. We will be having quite a few festivities for them. Even a few surprises that I will post after the events. My mom turns 60 today and when I called her today she answered "Hello, the elderly residence". She was having a hot dog picnic lunch by the pool and I told her I hoped she got to go somewhere nice for dinner because I don't want her 60th birthday memories to be of eating hotdogs - yum yum! Her best friend is giving her a party Saturday so that will be a good time.

Ok, I hope I have caught everyone up. There was been a ton of everyday stuff that happens, but I won't bore you with all of that. I thought the high points would suffice. Enjoy!
Now tomorrow at coffee I can say I am caught up on my Blog!!

Monday, April 21, 2008

Riley's a Great Great Grandpa!!

Congratulations Riley, it's a girl... and a girl, and a girl, and a girl and a girl, and a boy and a boy!

Riley is the proud great, great grandpa of 5 girl grand puppies and 2 boy grand puppies.

We went to see the puppies last night and they are unbelievably adorable. They are just three weeks old so they are still in the lay still and cuddle stage. Some had the cutest little whimpers and when their mom came in they all got real alert and started crying, they probably thought it was time to eat.

Michael is holding one of the many puppies. He asked the person who is selling the puppies if he took credit cards, like Michael should know what a credit card even is. When the person replied that cash or check was the preferred method of payment Michael got all excited and came running to me saying "mom, they take checks". I explained to him that you still needed money in the bank to write a check. A concept that I am sure went right over his little head.

Nicholas fell instantly in love with this little puppy. It was one of the few that liked to be held like a baby. Nick wants to get a puppy so bad. He was begging me again this morning to please let us get one.

This was the first time Rachel ever held a puppy. She was giggling and kissing all of them. Telling each one she held how "coot" they were (her version of "cute"). We had to remind her constantly to be gentle with them especially when she was holding one up by it's back end instead of the front end!!

I know, I know, the big question in every ones mind when they see this is...Are you getting one? The answer is NO. As much as I would love to, especially since this might be the last chance to get one from Riley's bloodline, it just isn't practical, financially and because we are not home a lot. The summer would be a great time since the kids and I would be home more, but we are going on vacation in June and who would volunteer to watch a puppy?! The kids said "Uncle Ryan", they seem to have an answer to all our puppy dilemmas. We know one of the people who is getting a puppy from this litter, maybe she'll breed this puppy some day and we could consider it then. With Riley being 13 he might feel he's being replaced if we brought a puppy in. We'll just have to go back in a couple of weeks and see them one more time before they go to good homes. If these puppies turn out anything like Riley they will be the best dog anyone could ask for.

Monday, March 31, 2008

Nap Time

Rachel was supposed to be napping last Friday, but obviously she had a different agenda. She had gotten in to one of her closets and pulled out all 22 Arthur books, plus some old Disney books and decided to spend her nap time doing a little light reading. She must have gotten sleepy during all this library time because when I went in to wake her up this is how I found her. Surrounded by all these books fast asleep with this one Arthur book propped up beside her. She must take after her me and her Aunt Katie, we love to read.
Michael is also becoming a book worm. He loves to read those Junie B. books that his teacher reads to them at school. He'll follow me around with a book continuously asking me if I can help him read the book. Nick on the other hand we have to tie him down to get him to read. There's never a happy medium with our kids it's always one extreme or another.

Sick Day

Poor Michael he had the flu a few days before Easter and Riley was trying to comfort him by laying on the couch with him. Actually Riley was probably put-out because Michael was on his normal spot. He's not used to having us home during the day and having to share the couch. This yucky flu ripped through our house. Rachel was the lucky one to start it then a couple of days later Todd and I got it, then a couple of days after that Michael got hit with it. Michael was so sick he did not move AT ALL from the couch for 12 hours straight. I think the only time he talked much is when my brother came over he told him "he was not feeling good". The next morning he got sick again and it was shortly after that he was feeling much better, just that quick and was begging me to take him to Wendy's for a cheeseburger. Kids are so resilient. Nick somehow missed it which was a blessing because a full week later most of us were still dealing with the aftermath. I think the day Michael got sick and I felt a little more human I started the washer at 8:00 in the morning and it was still going at 9:00 that night. I washed everything that wasn't nailed down and the stuff that I couldn't wash got scrubbed with a Clorox wipe. Will winter of '08 ever go away?

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Snow Days

Nick and his friend with their new buddy.

My Michael, he is always such a happy little boy!

Riley loved the blizzard of '08 he is truly a snow dog.

Rachel loves the snow as much as the boys and Riley. She spent hours outside on this snowy day helping to build one of the snowmen.

Tuesday, February 5, 2008

Ice Skating

We went ice skating on Sunday for Lauren's 8th Birthday party, which was too fun! The boys have ice skated before. We even had them in a class to learn how to play hockey a couple of years ago, but they lost interest about a year into it so we quit going. They were excited about trying it out again and Rachel was looking forward to it and she probably didn't even know what ice skating was really about. We got everybody skated up and out on the ice we went. Nick went zooming around the arena just like he'd never been away from it. Michael had wobbly feet for a while, but soon got the hang of it again. Rachel loved it. She never quit smiling the whole time we were on the ice and we must have been out there for about 1 1/2 hours. She had a little walker that she pushed around and it helped her from falling, but she loved to fall. She would fall down on purpose just to try and get back up by herself. Todd and I grew up ice skating so we didn't have any trouble as long as the kids didn't fall down and drag us down with them. It was a super time and Lauren even got the treat of riding the big Zambonie. Thanks for inviting us!

Thursday, January 31, 2008

Christmas in the Dreher World

We finally found our dream house. It only took us 5 years and 3 or 4 realtors but we did it. We have almost two acres, which is a far cry from our postage stamp size yard we had on Vine Street. The house is two years old, has 4 bedrooms (now that we remodeled a bit) 2 1/2 baths, full basement, family room, dining room, big eat-in kitchen, formal living room and a 3 car garage. We need that 3rd garage to house the big Steiner tractor Todd bought to mow all that grass. I still miss our old house some, we did so much to improve it, it was hard to say good-bye. The kids always want to drive by to see if I will cry. I am doing better at that now that it's been three months! I know we will make a lot of new memories in our new house, but some how Vine Street will always be my home in my heart.

Here we are making cut-out cookies. Nick just got a new hat, can you tell? Both boys love cutting shapes out of the dough, but most of all they just like eating the dough. Sometimes I think they help just so I will let them sneak bites of dough.

Rachel and I had the best day together. The boys were at school and we mixed up the dough for the cut-out cookies so we could make them the next day. She loved helping me pour in the ingredients. We sang Christmas songs and just had the best time. It brought back memories of when my mom and I would make cut-outs together and when Grandma Chiz and I would make cookies. I am so glad I can make those memories with my little girl.

We had a lot going on at Christmas time. We still hadn't unpacked a garage and basement full of boxes and Todd had a chain saw accident. It was pretty serious, but could have been worse. This happened three weeks before Christmas. Luckily we have awesome friends and family who helped us out with the rest of our Christmas decorations and with the kids. Thanks guys, I wouldn't know what to do without each and every one of you.

Santa found us at our new house so the kids were excited.

Holidays were not the same this year. Our family had two terrible losses this year. Grammy Lyon lost her battle with lung cancer in late July and Grandpa Chiz passed away a little unexpectedly in early September. I was so very close with both of them that I am not sure my heart will ever heal from the loss. My head knows they are in a better place, but my heart aches knowing I can't sit and talk with Grammy and watch her enjoy my kids and I so miss all the stories Grandpa used to tell us of the days when he was growing up. I am lucky to have had them as long as I did, but it doesn't stop the tears somedays. The picture on top is of Grammy last Christmas Eve and the picture on the bottom was taken Father's day this year of Grandpa Chiz and his crew.

Now with the holidays gone for another year things haven't been as hectic or stressful. Todd's walking on his own now and the doctor was really happy with the way his leg is healing. He'll have a nasty scar that I am sure the boys will think it's cool to show off to their friends but other than that he'll have no ill effects from it - thank goodness.

I hope you enjoyed reading about the Dreher World, the good, the bad and all that goes on in between.