Thursday, May 27, 2010

Beach Camping!

We went to one of our favorite spots this past weekend to camp. Fort De Soto. It has amazing beaches and it is no wonder why it is voted one of the top beaches in the world. Two days was not enough, but the sun had baked a few of us so we did not go back for day three. The company was especially nice because we had Matt, Kay Kay and Marse with us.
We did the stingray shuffle all weekend, and there were no incidents!
Stephanie spent as much time in the water and diving for sanddollars as she did at the shore-digging. It makes her heart happy.
Olivia flitted from one thing to another...and she was a great motor for pushing me around on my great new floatie chair!
Those poor coquinas! It was hilarious watching some of them learn how to skimboard...Alma is pretty good, but her ankle is still getting over the weekend.
The eight movie/DS playin' culprets hanging out in my camper.
This is mah jong. Ancient Chinese secret! Actually, it is great fun.
And this is the view we had as we played our games, fished or just hung out. It was the Schott's site, but we might stay here some day!

Monday, May 24, 2010

This one is for Amy!

Friends. They are great. Sometimes they help you through rough times, and sometimes they make you laugh. Then there are times when they help you out with problems. This is what my friend Amy does. She can cook up a mean meal on the sly, she always has something that will enhance a school lesson (like a sombrero or a stuffed armadillo) she has gadgets that would make most people green with envy, and she is my friend.

We share custody of a mah jong game. More of that later.

This past weekend a whole slew of us were camping down in Fort De Soto. Eight kids and many more adults, but somehow we felt outnumbered. Our last evening there, some of the Dads went fishing, some watched a movie, the moms played mah jong and then it started raining. Really sprinkling. So, eight kids piled up in our pop-up camper and had an evening of Nintendo DS playing and/or movie...unsupervised. No big deal right? Well, that would normally be the case, but the last time Olivia and Maddie were left in the camper they devoured a box of fruit roll-ups, got into the Cheetos and had their own PARTY!

Well, after two hours of seaside card playing goodness, we started hearing noises of FUN in the distance. I tried to ignore it and it seemed like everyone else could. We were about 100 yards away and with each squeal I could imagine other neighboring campers wondering what was going on!! So, I called my cell phone and Stephanie answered, I told her to control the noise. "Yes ma'am" she said so sweetly.

Twenty minutes later, the noise had continued to escalate and we began discussing some parenting pointers. We talked about micro-managing, failures, successes all while playing mah jong. Amy just listened. I called Stephanie back. "You guys need to be quieter." "Yes ma'am." she said, oh so sweetly again.

Ten more minutes passed. I was losing terribly. I could not keep my mind on the game. Finally Amy said "Give me that phone." She called. She told Stephanie " This is Ms. Amy, the Rangers are riding around and giving out tickets for people being too loud. Now you kids need to quiet it down." "Yes ma'am." she said yet again.

Lies. All lies. No Rangers. No tickets. But we got to finish our game. The Dads never had a clue. And Amy told me afterwards... "Now, that parenting tip you ain't gonna find in no book. Blog that!"

Thanks. See, friends like Amy help you get your kids raised.

Monday, May 17, 2010

Happy Mother's Day getaway!

You did not know I was one of six new models for Carraba's? Well. We liked to think we were. I had the gift (besides this pretty pink was the first clothing ever bought by my little girlies, and they did a great job!) of a weekend getaway to a resort in Orlando with some of my closest friends. We stayed at the Mike Ditka Resort. The room was just beautiful and had so much space. The beds were comfy and the pool was divine. The lounge chairs were super nice and the pool was clean and not packed. There was a separate kid's pool and hot tub.

We ate our share of good food (thanks to Dawn!) from BoneFish(Fri.) and Carraba's(Sat.). We found a hot spot (literally) Saturday night when we happened upon a Krispy Kreme. Oh my! We had a newbie among us, and for some reason thought we needed two dozen donuts. We ended up leaving a few for housecleaning. And there seemed to be 7-11's on every corner...and I love slurpees.

I cried tears from laughing so hard over the hilarious-ness of these women and have never felt so blessed to be surrounded by such supportive and Godly and REAL women. My three cheers go out to Steve and the girls for letting me go and have this time. I had a wonderful time.

Sleepover and other fun!

Kay-Kay had her senior prom....She was gorgeous.
This is how we spent the morning after a few friends slept over. A late movie night and a full day of pool had not allowed any DS time...they were keeping me company while our chef made eggs this particular Saturday.
I was completely assured that this vine was NOT poison ivy. She had a complete jewelry collection done. Anklet, bracelet, necklace and crown. My little outdoors girl.

Gymnastics recital

This weekend the girls had their annual gymnastics recital. Due to extenuating circumstances, I was not there for the big hurrah! Apparently I did not miss a whole lot...but they did a fabulous job. I do, almost daily, get to see the cartwheels and handstands that took place on the platform of the local, I feel like the future therapy sessions of my absence will be abated.

This is what happens when a wonderful and adventurous Dad is in charge of two girls (who were on their way to a performance) with hair and make-up done. They stop for a picture on a local WWII tank. Gotta love 'em.
This fake smile on Olivia's face is due to the fact that her costume was less than what she expected. Ms. Lori was not quite prepared for this group of girls and their outfits...but they were cute nonetheless.
Warm ups and stretches.
I am not quite sure if this "FAN" movement was a part of the show or not...but it was fun!
Strong arms. She loves gymanstics!
And now to watch the show! The girls also did a signing to song with another group of girls. It was lovely. I was very proud of their efforts and hard practices.

Friday, May 7, 2010

World History Co-op

Many of you have been with us as we traveled back in time this year with our co-op group as we studied World History. We began in August with Ancient Civilizations and second semester jumped up to Medieval Times. This group of kids worked so hard and we wrapped it up today with a knighting ceremony and they all received trophies. What a great bunch of kids!
Each session began with a student lead prayer and pledge to the American flag. Sometimes home schooling allows kids to forget to practice simple things like walking in a line, raising of hands and learning the pledge to the flag. We made sure to provide them all a chance to practice these skills.
They all had a chance to share a short favorite moment of the year, and it was interesting how they did not just copy each other's responses, they were all different. They all took time to gaze at each other's work from the year, marveling at how we all did so much!
Changes are coming for many of the families in our group, so it was bittersweet to close this chapter out...but we will see what next year holds.
Ms. Janet awarded each student with a certificate of completion and made adorable "World" cookies for snack!
World Class achievement!
Ms. Krista knighted each student as a dame or sir....their paperwork mentioned a parcel of land as well, I will have to check into this!
Olivia took it very seriously, bowing down low and she wanted to be named "Olivia, Princess of the Stars"...what am I going to do with her?
What a crew!

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Random life

Life in these parts sometimes feels like cream being shook into butter. Just like this group did at 4-H a few weeks ago. It was very interesting....did you know it will separate into a ball of fat and liquid whey if you shake it too long? We know from experience. But it is good if you shake it just long enough...sounds like a life lesson to me.
A pic I never posted of Papa and the girls from Easter morning. He sure does love them!
Here is an afternoon with Kay-Kay, Tara and Dylan. Laying out???? It did not last long, the water was much more appealing.

This little Olivia keeps me quessing. I am amazed at her likes, dislikes, passion, drama, humor, loyalty, dreams and ideas.

Monday, May 3, 2010

Weekend in Gainesville

We spent the weekend in Gainesville for a super special celebration. It was Steve's Grandmother's ninetieth birthday. We were able to have a family reunion along with it since family came from all over the United States to take part in the party. I never knew we had so many great people related to us!

The big night took place at the Florida Museum of Natural History in the Butterfly Garden. We had a great time of being together and also celebrating Grandma's life story she published in a book. It is an amazing read.
Pretty girls dressed brightly to attract the butterflies!
Grandma Porvaznik
Grandpa Porvaznik
Cousins: Cameron, Annika, Elena, and Landon

She cracked everyone up when she walked back to the table with this! Papa would be so proud!
Grandma aka Cinderella. Her cake was so pretty but her dress was divine!
This crew certainly cut the rug and kept the DJ super busy!