I feel guilty. There has been a lot of "newness" in our home and I haven't documented any of it. Well, not exactly true...I have documented it, I just haven't put it out on the ol' worldwide web. Well world, here it is - a few firsts in the life of the many Corleys.
My dear sweet Koala has embarked on the world of higher education...where paint and children collide, where stories are told and dances are danced and there are too many kids basically...everywhere. Tristan has begun preschool. My heart was very nervous the first day - I was scared that he would cry or feel confused or wonder why it was that HE....the third child in the bunch...was the only one donning a backpack on the first day of school. His teacher was (IS!!!) so super sweet and understanding and put my little at ease instantly. She has a sweet smile, and to Tristan that's all that really matters - a nice smile and yellow cheese and you're his friend.
It has been almost three weeks and he has done really well. We figured out that he has a hard time going if he is the only kid in the car on the way to school ... his lip trembles and his chin tucks into his neck and he mumbles "don't want to go...just stay here." My heart shatters just a bit when this happens...like A LOT. But he works through it with a little bit of "Oh, you will have SO much fun at school with Miss Sylvia and you will play and laugh and then you can come home and have some lunch with yellow cheese."
Finn is undecided on the situation. He misses his Minion Rush friend (for all of you not in the *loop*, Minion Rush is the game for kids...a bunch of little yellow cheeto looking men run mazes on your iPhone, trying to get as many bananas a possible - life changing material for sure.)
Little Bug is happy though about the extra time with daddy. While I'm doing school with the older kids Zac keeps Finn busy with learning the game of golf...wearing nothing but undies and socks. I wonder how many men wish they could ditch the dockers and polos for this more relaxed attire?
Bugs don't mind wet grass...and this little is no exception.
Koala doesn't have school on Wednesdays so we are using that day for field trips or play dates and stuff like that. Zac has been wanting to take us to Estes Park forever and it was certainly rewarding. It was very gorgeous and I think I must have either said the words or thought the words "I wish I could paint that" at least, ohhhh, 45 times or so. I was looking out the window at the evergreens and pines, the bright bright blue sky and the soft clouds and all I could think was "God is the most awesome artist ever." I just totally appreciate His skills --- what a huge gift.
We packed a picnic the easy way (snagging some sandwiches at Subway) and then tried to locate a picnic spot. There were signs that said there were picnic tables but we couldn't see them from the road...there was a parking spot though, a very very small parking spot for such a huge National Forest. No matter though, we got the kids out, strapped Finn into the backpack and started down the trail....and kept going...and going....still no picnic tables. We went a little further and got to experience crossing a creek only using a log for a bridge...with four kids...sub sandwiches...water bottles...and a rather large camera. It was an experience, and somehow no one got wet.
The kids were given maps with plants and animals to identify. They did a really awesome job and pretty much loved the whole experience. Brady did well with about half the walk which is usually more than he can handle. Brady does not like the great outdoors very much. The different noises...birds flying, wind through trees, crickets chirping and bees buzzing...well....they just don't do his heart good. In fact, they irritate him a lot because they are unpredictable. The fact that he did well for half the time I'm going to take away as a "score." I'm proud of my little Brave Brayden, and he was stoked to learn all about the Continental Divide and that we were going to cross it a little later on in our trip.
Trinity was enraptured with the hidden mushrooms and the wildflowers....Tristan preferred spotting elk droppings...and Finn just loved the trees.
By the way, we never found picnic tables and our trail disappeared. We DID find bark that had been scruffed up by an antler recently and of course the before mentioned "droppings" and also a patch of tall grass that has been rolled in. Almost elk finding success.
The lovely aspens...they make my heart sing.
At the end of our time we finally spotted a mama elk and her baby - and no, no picture of our find....I apologize. I was too busy taking pictures of the purple pine cones that I couldn't be bothered with the whole purpose of our trip...to locate where the elk were, to spot them, to take 100 pictures of the elk and count their racks (wait...do you do that with them or just with deer?) and then to tell every living soul how many elk we found at Estes Park. Zac really likes elk...we found two. The mama and it's baby - supposedly it was the wrong time of day to see them or something. It doesn't matter though...I found mushrooms, droppings, and purple pine cones.
And now...totally off subject - but another new thing that has happened
wait for it
I made my first souffle. I somehow managed all 7 steps ...it came out all puffy and golden and it was delicious and I was proud of myself. I tried something new.
Homeschooling the kids is going a bit better then I expected and for now, I chalk it up to my laid back approach. Yes, I can be 20% laid back from time to time...the other 80% is mostly faking it but I think that's okay. As long as my littles get to learn about the Continental Divide AT the Continental Divide, and the are learning how God made our earth and reading maps then I'm pretty happy. I think they are too.