March 31st, 2008

Recently I have been reading about classical education and particularly Charlotte Mason’s educational philosophy. The subject is huge and I’m not posting about that tonight, but I wanted to preface the recap of our day with what I’ve been reading. My friend Jill recommended “Pocketful of Pinecones” by Karen Andreola about making Nature Notebooks, along with the book “Teach Your Child To Read in 100 Easy Lessons” (which is the book Jerome is currently thriving on), and she mentioned others that I made notes of when I had her over to my house to glean from her store of knowledge and experience. I am also gleaning from people like Charlene, Misty, Judy, and Mom who have all gone before me are reaching back to give me what treasures they have found. I’m so grateful to them!

We had the delightful surprise of having Peter come home early as his school campus was closed and he didn’t know it until he got there. The boys and I had already gone to the library after lessons and picked up a box of Agapanthus from Grandma as she had extra from thinning hers out. Peter helped us plant them in front of the old tree stump in our side yard. As he was digging he found what we thought at first was a tiny snake that had gotten it’s tail chopped off under the hoe, but it turns out after some research that it was a California legless lizard and it probably dropped it’s own tail. Jerome learned how to water the new plants so as to soak them and not flood them, and we’re hoping the new plants take nicely…and cover up that stump. 🙂 Jerome is also learning how to ride his bike without the training wheels, as one fell off today, and Daddy took the other off. He’ll probably get the hang of it soon, and we need to get him a bigger bike!

During dinner I shared with Peter and Jerome how I wanted to begin a Nature Notebook with him soon, and what one was. I also want to order the Handbook to Nature Study by Anna Comstock to aid us in our study. We were laughing that we might not have to even step out our door to do some nature study, and yet how grateful we are to live as though in the country here. As we were reading library books after dinner Jerome wanted to learn how to draw a snake, and then continued to draw the asparagus plant in my kitchen window quite accurately! Tomorrow he will draw the Agapanthus and we will paste it in under his snake drawing, which is really supposed to be a legless lizard!

So today, rather by accident, we began Jerome’s Nature Notebook and made his first entry!

In other news, Ian is standing up on his own more and more from a squatting position and is quite proud of himself. He positively crows when he gets up and he knows we’re watching him. Here are some pics.

 I love how you can really see his eyes with the flash! He was standing up outside, but as soon as he saw me with the camera he came crawling! He loves oranges! :-) Ian is already making things go… and often makes the noises, too! Jerome with his training wheels off! The hardest part was getting both feet up at the same time… and keeping his balance. But he kept trying… and trying… and he will try some more tomorrow! Bob and Judy were here today and put the lines out. It sounds like rain outside, and as the sun was going down it looked like a foggy morning. I love how the light is caught in the moving drops. I just missed Seth…but I really like this shot. Ian loves to do what his brothers do, and Daddy gave him a chance to “lawn” like Seth. But the walking toy is sturdier. I love the light in this image. And Ian loves standing up! I’ll see if I can get a pic of him standing on his own later this week.

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March 30th, 2008

Saturday came up overcast and hauling enormous clouds that we thought might rain on us, but I was grateful for the muted day as our shoot was scheduled for the middle of the day at the Gardens of the World. I’d never done a shoot there before, and had to request a reservation for formal photography, but there was no cost to get in, and it was so beautiful!

Yesterday I had the honor to meet Paul, Christine’s fiancé, and am looking forward to photographing their wedding in July! They are so in love and I enjoyed watching them interact and share a closeness with each other that I hope deepens with the years. I’m so happy for you two and honored to be your photographer!

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March 27th, 2008

Jane was home on Spring Break this week and set aside Wednesday afternoon to spend with us! We went on a picnic hike with Noel and the Barlow boys up on Big Sky Trail behind the Barlow’s place. Peter had taken us up there on Monday and I hadn’t taken my camera, so I wanted to go back with it (and the boys dressed in jeans) because the wildflowers were blooming like I had never seen before. I wish California were always this pretty. 😉

Jane, thank you for your precious time given to us. We love you dearly and cherish every minute!

 Jane pushed the little boys up and over all those hills! Yes, they are cousins! Seth and Zachary had some great conversations together. I wish I knew what they were saying! Jerome ran ahead of us most of the hike. And waited for us to catch up! Raven got to hike, too! Seth wanted to run up the hill like Jerome did, so Auntie Jane helped him. :-) At the top! Jerome loved to have us watch him run as fast as he could down the hills. Ian and Brennan hanging out together in the stroller. They took turns patting each other and grabbing ears and hair. I think they adore each other!  Whiteface My boys and Whiteface. Raven absolutely loved running around with the boys! When she would barrell her way through the brush, the smell of sage would burst around us. It was lovely!  The poor dog got so hot, though. I didn’t envy her black coat! Jerome could have run circles around us he was so full of energy! These little ones were getting ready for their naps by lunchtime. Getting ready to give thanks. By the end of luch, we were scooted back under the bushes as far as we dared to gain a little shade! Indian Paintbrush Blackeyed Susans Brodiaea  Seth in a valley of mustard flowers.  Zachary in the valley of mustard flowers.  Butterfly Mariposa Lily  Butterfly Mariposa Lily  Butterfly Mariposa Lily  Chamomile, or Trickseed?  Indian Paintbrush  Zachary  Black Mustard  Goard flowers  Whiteface again.  Blackeyed Susan?  Lupine  Jerome called up, “This is so beautiful!”  Seth was playing hide and go seek with Zachary. :-)  Jane took this of Zachary. :-)  Poor Ian feel alseep before picture time.  Jane helped them smile.  That was a long hike!  Time for a nap. :-)  Thanks for this pic, Jane!  And thank you for your time. We miss you already!

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March 24th, 2008


She kept the boys all day Saturday for us and they had so much fun with her! Sprinklers, smoothies, park time, hamburgers, and lots of laughs was the report I received when we got home at 10pm. I also got a huge running leap and a bear hug from Jerome who had waited up for us. He had a bouquet and a note waiting for me on my nightstand that he shoved at me too. SO adorable! We could not have had the day we did on Saturday without her. Thank you, Gigi! I’m so very, very thankful you live near us and can share our lives!

Since Gigi spent the night with us, she got to see the boys open their Easter baskets, and help get all of us ready for church in the morning. When we got home from church everybody immediately changed into comfy clothes as it was a hot day…but all of the pics of the boy’s easter egg hunt are casual. Oh, well, they had a blast!

I’ll show you pictures, but first I’ll tell you that the rest of the day was made so special just by having my sister around! (Not to mention the 20 minute nap I got while she kept them outside!) She came to the family dinner that evening and sat with me while Peter took care of Ian. My day was so special because of my loved ones. But I got home to a message from Vanessa…we missed their call. Sometimes that feels so heavy. But I have the gift of her voice on my answering machine! 🙂

Here’s the boy’s Easter egg hunt and Ian’s ten month pics…

 They wandered around the yard for a few minutes before they found any eggs. I love his expression. :-) Here is the first series of Seth finding an egg… He would immediately open it and empty the egg into his bucket… And then he would very carefully place the empty egg in his rain boot where he had found his first egg! Jerome loved the challenge of finding them! Another series of Seth finding an egg. I’m pretty sure he got more than just hints from Daddy. :-) Showing me where he found the egg. :-) Then very carefully putting the empty egg in his boot. Jerome found an egg in the apple tree! That was fun! Good egg hiding, and good clues Daddy! Ian getting some Gigi time! It just occured to me that they are both third born! I like the lighting. So precious! Glad Gigi doesn’t mind the baby drool. Thank you for being here for us, Gigi. You are a blessing in our lives and I can’t tell you how much I love you! You’re such a goof and make my life fun! Daddy helped Ian ride Seth’s tractor, and boy was he happy! Our ten month old! Please excuse the diaper, I did have him dressed at several points that day…this wasn’t one of them. He was totally bouncing and rocking in that seat, enjoying his chance to finally sit on it instead of chase it! Trying to make it go, maybe? Ian is so mobile now, not just crawling, but climbing and exploring! He has six teeth and absolutely adores his daddy! And this one Peter took. I like the angle and Ian’s expression! Happy ten months, Ian Daniel!

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March 24th, 2008

It was so hard to believe she’s gone…until I saw all the family together without her, and grieving her.

The service was unlike any I had been to, and the place and day was amazingly beautiful. I wanted to take oh, so many pictures, but I did not. I took a few of the service for Lily’s mother and will not post them here. Someday I would like to take wedding photos there.

But I think it will be hard to go back.

 Little Church of the Flowers at Forest Lawn Memorial Park. This was the release of doves after the service. Grandma Guy with all of her children at the reception.

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