A few more big words...

Victoria and I were in the car headed home last night when she asked where Jaj and Busha went to church. I asked her what town they live in, and her answer was "Biography!" I asked her to clarify, and she again said, "Bi - 0 - gra - phy!"

Today, on our way home from school, "Mom - that sign we just drove by said Junction! We're on a junction! Just like Jungle Junction (a cartoon on tv)!"


Word Worm

The other day, Victoria asked me, "Mom, what does 'necessary' mean?" I gave her a definition, then asked where she saw or heard that word. Her reply: "On my game, it says, 'No reading necessary to play'!" When I'm reading stories to her, I've started just changing a word here and there (saying 'friend' instead of 'bud') to sort of see how closely she's paying attention when I'm reading at regular speed. She's caught me even when it's unintentional on my part!

Catching up on the past week

We finally got our Christmas tree last weekend. I'd like to continue the tradition of waiting until just after V's birthday to get the live tree. It's up in the living room, however has no lights, as only 1 of our 6 strands worked, AND I can't find any lights anywhere - everywhere is sold out!

One of V's requested birthday presents was a new guitar. I found one with a microphone, too!

Victoria's been asking frequently to use our camera, and has gotten good at watching the preview window, and holding still to take the picture. I had to delete about 15 identical pics of her horses - she likes 'em!
In this one, V lined up all her horses, set out a birthday card, and had them all singing Jingle Bells :)
Her self-portrait

The mandatory annual rudolph hat and nose from school

Getting a FEW cookies baked, although it's just not our day - three of four batches of dough ended up in the trash. Two things were learned: I can't combine the rest of the ingredients, split the dough, then try to add Jell-O to the cookie mix. ick. I also learned that if a recipe calls for sugar, an egg, and peanut butter, don't substitute Splenda and fake PB. double-ick. Ah, well. At least we look cute.


Annual Daddy/Victoria photo

Every year, Rod helps out with the local Shop with a Cop event. The rare occasion of Rod home and in uniform makes for the perfect opportunity for an annual picture.

Birthday Pics

Well, all the pictures loaded in reverse order, so here's how the night ended...

And here's how it began, despite the fact that for the second year in a row, there was a snow day on Victoria's birthday. Luckily, this year Rod checked the weather and we prepared V for the fact that there might be a snow storm.


Weather Changes

What a difference a few days makes! This was early last week...

And by the end of the week, this is what we were looking at:

Thanksgiving weekend at Jaj & Busha's


Warmup = Ladybugs!

The warm weather last week brought the ladybugs out of the woodwork. Who needs a bug zapper when V will just run around gathering everything she can see?!?

Just another lazy Sunday

I was sitting at the dining room table reading through the paper. Victoria saw the comics and asked if she could have them. Here's what I looked down to see...


Glimpse of what's to come...

I glance at V's chair, where she should be sitting, eating dinner. The chair's empty. I holler, "V, what are you doing?" as the last time I glanced up, she was right there.

Her response? "I'm reading a book! Can I read AND eat?"

It's a struggle to get her to wear anything but a dress. Luckily, I found a ton of cute dresses at WalMart for $5 each, so they're great for everyday wear. I finally got to take the tags off this outfit I bought for her last year, by convincing her that everyone would think she was beautiful in pants OR a dress. Still, every day it's the same question, "Mom, can I please get dressed into a dress? PLEASE?"


Halloween pics

Just a few of our little witch :)


Saying goodbye to an old friend

We knew it was only a matter of time, but didn't think it would be so soon. On one hand, Olly made the decision for us, and left on his own terms. We didn't have to struggle with the weight of making the choice, and when to make it. On the other hand, we didn't get much time to prepare for it, or to say much more than Goodbye.

I let him out this morning, glanced and saw him walking the perimeter as he always did... When I looked out a few minutes later, he was lying near the woods. When we went out there, he lifted his head briefly, but seemed to know it was time to go.

When Rod got back from the vet, we sat down to tell Victoria what happened. She seemed a little sad, asked why, then asked if we would get another dog. It's interesting to hear how matter-of-fact she is about it. I think she's a little sad but probably doesn't understand the permanence of it.

Goodbye, Olly. And thank you for your service, obedience, and loyalty.


More pics from Idaho

At the pumpkin patch

The girls had a great time carving pumpkins - so did the dogs!

By our flight home, V was ready to go, and worn out. One of the last days there, I asked her what happened to her manners, she said, "They went home."


Jinx... But that's okay!

Apparently my last post jinxed us out here - it was raining this morning, and was overcast and chilly all day. But I'm STILL not complaining, as it's still been warm enough to keep a window cracked, at least, and the sun did make an appearance toward the end of the day.

We've been pretty busy helping around here with all the fall prep, and the girls have been tons of help - from cutting back plants outside to peeling, cutting and canning apples.

And some fun in between.
Victoria and I are out here until Thursday, and I'm so glad I feel like I'm able to help out around here, and (hopefully!) lighten up a little of the stress Amanda feels while she's on restricted activities. If nothing else, it just confirms that I want to start saving for all of us to come back out here when we can see the mountains, the parks, and just have fun as friends and family.