I haven't been writing things down much recently, but here are a few.

12/14 - Faith likes to "write" and rarely draws, but she asked me to make a guy for her, which I did.  When she asked for more and more I reverted to a quick stick figure.  Then she started drawing her own guys!  A head with two toes sticking out.  Her first time drawing people!  They are very cute people, and I have her assurance that they are toes and not legs.

12/15 - We watched an Alfred Hitchcock movie.  They are hit or miss and this one was a miss.  Faith got restless before it ended and said, "Me no wikey moonie."  Jonathan and Noah knew to keep still until the end but both were disappointed.  Hoping at least for some comic relief to redeem the time, Noah asked, "Daddy, can we please watch the outtakes?"  Jon just had to laugh out loud at that one.  They didn't do outtakes in the thirties...

12/22 - This morning Jon did some shopping after his meeting and as we were putting away the groceries, Jonathan asked, "Mom, are perogies panterable?"  What?  "Are perogies panter-able?"  He meant "able to be put in the pantry" as opposed to the freezer.

Posted by Heather Daley on December 22, 2010, 8:57 pm | Read 2925 times | Comments (2)
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Actually, the only thing written in my pocket notes from all this time is that on 11/16, Jon solved the mirror cube with his eyes closed.

Jonathan's 7th birthday was a very fun time.  He got a lot of cool presents and had a lot of cool people over to play.  Grandma and Dad-o were there for the occasion and the next few days were also busy with fun. (More)

Posted by Heather Daley on December 8, 2010, 11:56 am | Read 4012 times | Comments (1)
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11/6 - Noah and I were making rice krispie treats and Noah was stirring.  He asked for a marshmallow, but I said no, they had to go in the recipe and he could have one of the finished products.  Well, he decided to snitch and got a natural lesson.  I, only a few feet away in the kitchen, heard him screaming.  He had dipped his finger in the melted marshmallow to taste it!  I rushed him over to the sink and after a while of running it under the cold water, I made an ice bath in a bowl for him.  His finger turned out fine after a few minutes and he had learned a good lesson. (More)

Posted by Heather Daley on November 15, 2010, 5:57 pm | Read 7382 times | Comments (2)
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11/1 - Jonathan, "My favorite color is green."  Noah, "My favorite color is green, too!"  Jonathan, "Faith, what's your favorite color?  Is it green?"  Faith, "No, flower."

11/1 - Jonathan lost his left front upper tooth!  He bit into a grape (boy, that tooth must have been ready!) at 1pm and the tooth was out at 5pm.  We can already see the grown up tooth showing through.  The matching front tooth is due any day now, I'd guess.

11/3 - On a Sunshine Math page, Jonathan was instructed to find the "value" of words using a code A = 1 cent, B = 2 cents, etc.  The last part said, "Your first name = ____" and he was not so happy that his name has eight letters in it.  But he did something harder and thought it was more fun anyway.  He added up y-o-u-r-f-i-r-s-t-n-a-m-e.  I accepted that as a correct answer. (:

11/3 - Jonathan, "In Japan a long time ago, they didn't have guns... they had shoguns!"

Faith is more often dry at night than she was before.  Last week she had four nights dry in a row!  Daytime is mostly the same.  She doesn't like to sit long enough for #2 so that usually ends up in the underwear.  But I'm taking it in stride right now and encouraging her to keep trying.  "I know" she says when I remind her. (:

11/5 - After a brief phone call with Mom, I related, "Grandma says, 'hi' to everybody."  Faith replied, with a bright face and excited voice, "Mom, hug!?"  She likes phone hugs from Grandma!

Posted by Heather Daley on November 5, 2010, 9:27 pm | Read 2537 times | Comments (1)
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10/3 - Jon felt the baby kick!  Since then, Jonathan and Faith have thought maybe they felt it.  If the kids were ever up when I was still in bed but awake in the morning, they would definitely be able to feel it.

10/3 - Noah counted to 20 on his own.  He is most comfortable sticking with 12, though.

10/5 - Faith, seeing a picture of Grandma on the computer said, "'Ma"

10/18 - Jonathan, talking to Noah about where to put a recipe, "I call it her biscuit cookbook because all I ever make out of it is biscuits." (More)

Posted by Heather Daley on October 23, 2010, 8:38 am | Read 2031 times | Comments (5)
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This is short but my pocket notes are full and I need a new paper.

9/25 - Noah, wearing his Swiss tshirt and red shorts, "This is my hockey outfit.  My hockey team is called Swiss Fire!"

In lieu of nursing for any length of time (which is very irritating when pregnant and seems to get more so each pregnancy) I will sing to Faith as we go to bed.  Her favorite hymn is Holy Holy Holy and she will sing along with me, allternating pronunciation between "hohee" and "hodee".  So sweet!

Can't remember the day.  Jon overheard Jonathan talking to Noah as they were getting ready for bed.  "Don't wear that kind of shirt to bed.  You grow in the middle of the night and you might not be able to get it off!"

9/28 - Opening a letter from Grandma:  Noah, "I know what it is: cool stuff!"  It was some more Sunshine Math pages.  Noah exclaimed, "I LOVE Sunshine Math!"  Jonathan replied, rather reluctantly as if he didn't want to admit it, "Yeah, Sunshine Math is pretty fun."

Posted by Heather Daley on October 1, 2010, 2:56 pm | Read 6538 times | Comments (17)
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Inspired by an article in Family Fun magazine, I developed a fun motivator for bedtime cleanup that really works.  Before, there would be lots of complaining, dilly-dallying and nagging.  Now the house is clean every night before bed and the job is done quickly!  Here's how it works.

We have a jelly jar to fill up with colorful glass gems (which we call "beads" though they have no holes).  Each evening at clean up time, we set a timer for fifteen minutes.  For every minute left on the timer (rounded to the next whole minute up) they get to put a bead in the jar.  A bonus of five beads is awarded if the whole house is clean before we even start the timer (motivating clean up before the evening even arrives!).  A penalty of three beads is subtracted if the parental inspection reveals that the house is not clean despite the boys' statement that it is.

The reward for a full jar of beads is a special treat selected by the boys.  The most recent one was to watch a VeggieTales movie.

This works so well for our family.  Now, even if it takes the whole fifteen minutes and they get no beads, the job is done in that short time - in the past sometimes it would take until they were falling into bed and still not be done, really.  The past several days they have gotten most of their beads and even the bonus twice!  The jar is now half full again though it was reset only a few days ago!  The house is noticeably cleaner (ask my Mom who just visited!)  I know I'm using a lot of exclamation points, but I am so happy that this is working out.  Everyone benefits and it is turning out ot be really fun.  (We even get some math in as Noah counts out the reward for the evening and Jonathan divides them as evenly as possible for the three kids to place in the jar.)  (:

Posted by Heather Daley on September 25, 2010, 6:32 pm | Read 1993 times | Comments (4)
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I'm definitely feeling the baby now!  Movements are most noticeable when I am lying down.

9/14 - Jon had mentioned that the next time Jonathan got sneakers, they should have laces.  Jonathan had never learned to tie his shoes because he never had tie shoes.  At almost seven years old, we figured it was time.  It took him an afternoon to get the hang of it and now he's an old pro.

9/17 - At a friend's house, Noah found a small pedal, no-training-wheels bike and successfully made a large circle without falling down!

9/18 - Despite our not being too into sports, Jonathan knows at least something about Pittsburgh.  We were visiting our friends who live on Mt.Washington and the mom turned on the baseball game on TV to see when it ended so they could go up and watch the fireworks.  Jonathan's comment, "The Pirates are winning?!?  That's weird!"

Sometime in the middle of September, Faith added the /k/ sound to the end of "milk".  Now we can distinguish between "more" and "milk"!

9/23 - Faith said "poke" sounding like "boke"

Faith hurt the pinky toe/right side of her right foot on the evening of 9/22 while running around.  She continued to limp and cry about it until 3pm the next day.  I considered calling the doctor, but she was walking on it without complaining that evening.  She still needs to be careful of it because several times since then she has mildly re-injured it.  It was rather strange to me to watch her crawl around after she has been walking so long.

9/24 - As I was falling asleep for my nap, I could hear Jonathan humming to himself - an eclectic mix of hymns, praise songs, Christmas carols, and the Imperial Death March.

Today, Noah asked me to check his shoes to make sure he put them on the right feet.  When I told him they were not, he let out an exasperated sigh.  He had tried really hard and still gotten it wrong.  Poor guy.  But I encouraged him that he'd get it soon.

Posted by Heather Daley on September 25, 2010, 6:20 pm | Read 2505 times | Comments (1)
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8/31 - The boys were making octopuses out of their banana peels. Jonathan called his a "cinctopus".  It had five legs.  His reason, "Because uno, dos, tres..."

9/6 - Faith's second birthday!  When you ask her how old she is, she will answer, "Dew!"  She also answers that for what her name is, and other questions, so we have fun asking things like, "Faith, what's one plus one?  What's four divided by two?"  She opened presents in the morning and we had our church picnic in the afternoon/evening.  It was a fun day for us all and she enjoyed all the festivities, singing, opening, blowing out, etc.  But she only ate the frosting part of her cake. (More)

Posted by Heather Daley on September 11, 2010, 8:32 pm | Read 5662 times | Comments (1)
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This post is long overdue (I have two separate pocket papers kicking around) but as you may have noticed, we've been pretty busy around here.  We are leaving soon for another vacation and so I really want to get these papers out of my pocket!

When Noah had his 4 year appointment (over the charts in height and weight, ears and eyes are good, everything is fine) the nurse called him "pal" and he has asked me to call him that several times since then. (More)

Posted by Heather Daley on August 25, 2010, 9:11 pm | Read 2288 times | Comments (2)
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We arrived at the Fitzkees' house on Thursday night, and Nick said we could stay as long as we wanted.  We ended up extending our trip by a day and coming home on Tuesday, which was a good decision.  I think we spent the right amount of time for the whole family to enjoy the sight-seeing. (More)

Posted by Jon Daley on August 20, 2010, 8:48 pm | Read 3005 times | Comments (9)
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We cooked bacon and pancakes (I found a nifty plastic pint jug in Walmart or somewhere that you simply pour water into the jug, shake it up, and pour it on the griddle) for breakfast, and then packed up and planned to meet for lunch at Great Falls, 15 miles away.

Heather went back to the store for bread and bandaids (I cut myself doing something, and Heather thought we might run out of bandaids) and also to a McDonalds to sit in the air conditioning while she looked up directions to the Fitzkee's house where we were going to stay for the next couple days.  Heather bought smoothies for Faith and herself since they were pretty hot. (More)

Posted by Jon Daley on August 20, 2010, 5:26 pm | Read 2427 times | Comments (4)
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As I looked at the maps for the third day, we were going to be biking near various battlefields and other tourist-type places to visit, and so in the interest of resting a little, I decided we should drive for a ways and then maybe bike in the afternoon.  (More)

Posted by Jon Daley on August 20, 2010, 5:25 pm | Read 1487 times | Comments (0)
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I've wanted to bike to DC for a while, but there never seemed like a good opportunity to do so.  Once we purchased the tandem bike, and started thinking about the possibility of biking all over the country, the Washington trip seemed like a good first step.

The trip did get shorter over time, and originally other people were going to come with us, but everyone backed out at the last minute.

I thought it would be best to start at the highest point of the trail, rather than biking all the way from Pittsburgh, in order to avoid the uphill climb, and also shorten the trip from 334 miles to 207 miles.  And to avoid Heather having to drive in downtown DC traffic, I shortened the other end of the trip by 8 miles as well.

 (More)

Posted by Jon Daley on August 20, 2010, 4:39 pm | Read 32627 times | Comments (1)
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As Heather mentioned, it did take us a while to get this post written, but I thought it would be good to have a record of it, so here goes...

Each year for the last several years, Paul has organized a two day bike trip for the kids of BCF.  This year, we drove to Rockwood, PA and biked to Cumberland, MD, and then to the Paw Paw Tunnel the second day.

 (More)

Posted by Jon Daley on August 20, 2010, 2:43 pm | Read 1758 times | Comments (0)
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