Novalie loves her cousins. She is shy at first, but as soon as she warms up, there is no stopping her. We went to Richland this past weekend for Novalie’s cousin, Kody’s farwell. He is leaving this week on a 2 year mission to Madagascar. Novalie and Kody haven’t spent much time together or see each other very often, but they are bonded. It is sweet. Novalie made him a cute good luck card that he said he was going to take with him and would get him through tough times. I am sure he will get many more throughout the 2 years. We wish him all the luck and are proud of him for his service. We also were able to go to Shelby’s basketball game. Novalie loved it and I think it gave her a better grasp on basketball as her basketball season just started. Novalie even asked Shelby to sign her ball we got at her game. It always feels good when we make the effort to provide opportunities for Novalie to feel connected to her cousins. And it is awesome that she has such upstanding teenage cousins to look up to.
Monthly Archives:January 2011
At school, Novalie has writer’s workshop where her teacher let’s the students write stories about whatever they want, fiction or non-fiction. Her 1st grade teacher did this as well and as a result I have 3 stories that I will treasure always. Both her 1st and 2nd grade teachers have told me that some kids agonize for days over what to write about, but Novalie is always so excited, has an idea right away and gets to work on it. Creativity is one of her strengths and I love that her teachers do this writer’s workshop . She brought home a story this week titled, “My Dad.” It is the sweetest thing EVER and made me cry the first time I read it. Here is what she wrote:
“My Dad is fun because he bought me a stuffed goat and glow in the dark stars. He plays littlest pet shop with me a lot. We watch T.V. together. This Halloween he took me to the trunk or treat at the church. Once he took me to the movies! We have fun together. My Dad and I like to tickle and wrestle. We are making the longest picture ever made. It is fun because we can draw everything like Seattle and the ocean. We get to add sharks, dolphins, fish and lots of detail and colors like blue and pink. We made the arctic with polar bears, arctic foxes, orcas and a sun shining! My Dad is cool because for Christmas he got me fairy tale books. They are good! One night he took me to bingo night at school. It was fun going with my Dad! My Dad is fun because he always plays with me. We like to be funny. He is very nice. We are scared of the vacuum and we like it!”
It has illustrations in it too of some of the things she talks about in the story. Isn’t she just the sweetest thing?! And isn’t Kevin just an awesome Dad?! What better complement and reassurance that you are doing a good job than having your daughter write a story like that about you! I feel blessed.
- My Mother-in-laws homemade rolls.
- Sitting by the fireplace talking, reading, doing word searches, playing with Novalie, listening to Novalie play.
- Going to P.F. Changs for the first time. Thank you Mom and Dad Jolley!
- Talking to my MIL.
- Janell taking Novalie to the movies for 2 reasons, one-because Novalie adores Janell and was hoping for another special movie date with her and two-Kevin and I got to hang out and say a whole sentence to each other without being interrupted.
- Mountain Dew slurpees from 7-11. I don’t like Mt. Dew at all, but I LOVE Mt. Dew slurpees. When Novalie was at the movies, we got one and when she saw the cup she was mad. She said, “it is always our tradition to get slurpees as a family when we come to Richland.” I instantly felt guilty because she is right, but we made another family slurpee run.
- Chuck E Cheese! It is our tradition to go to Chuck E Cheese after Christmas. It is great because Novalie doesn’t ask to go there every time we go to Richland because she knows it is a special tradition at Christmas time.
- Shopping at Fred Meyer. Kevin and Novalie got some fancy new shoes. Novalie is a size 3, I can’t believe it!
- Watching Kevin and Novalie roast hot dogs and marshmallows in the fireplace.
Growing up going to both my Grandma’s houses, there were always things I could count on being at their house. Things that made Grandma’s house, Grandma’s house. The lists are long, but these are some of the things I think of when going to my Grandma’s houses. My Grandma Ruth’s house, I remember the smell. The best I could describe it is brown rice cooking. I loved seeing her old car in the carport. I knew there were always be lots of pictures everywhere. I knew I was going to get an awesome Grandma Ruth back massage with her healing sticks and stones. I knew she would make me laugh because she is good kooky. I can never think of my Grandma Ruth without thinking about Vitamin C. I can still taste her Vitamin C. My Grandma Wittwer’s house, I always knew there would be cookies in the cookie jar. I loved playing with the green baskets that she used for gardening on the deck. I loved the doll house toys and blocks. I loved her food storage room. I loved running through my Grandpa’s garden on the stone steps. I remember the bar stools that turned and spending a lot of time in the kitchen with my Grandma. I was thinking about this last weekend when we were at Novalie’s “new” Grandma’shouse. We always read “Wacky Wednesday” every night before bed while we are visiting. This time I said, “we should buy this book for our house since we love it so much.” Novalie’s response is what made me think of all this, “no, I want it to be a special book at Grandma’s house that we get to read each time we are here.” When Novalie grows up and thinks back on visiting “new” Grandma’s house, she is going to associate “Wacky Wednesday” with those memories. That makes me happy. Two other things that she will think of when thinking about “new” Grandma’s house is playing Lego’s and playing with the train. She almost immediately asks for the train to be brought up from the basement. It is not only Grandma’s house, it is Grandpa’s house too and she will remember building fires with Grandpa and helping Grandpa out in the yard whether it be in the garden or in the trees or searching for rocks. Grandparents are so important to a child. I am so thankful and feel so blessed that Novalie has the best “new” and “old” Grandparents.
Christmas vacation felt like a really long time and yet now that it is over, I am wondering where the time went. I have the familiar sadness of adjusting to a quiet house all day again and Novalie being out there in the world without me by her side. I have quite a few things that I want to work on in the coming months, but today I am doing laundry and relaxing. This is how we spent our Christmas vacation (except Christmas Eve and Christmas because I already posted about those):
Novalie had strep throat which wiped out the first 4 days of break. Boo.
Went ice skating twice.
Novalie illustrated 4 books in her Marles series.
We saw, “Tangled,” “Tron,” “Gulliver’s Travels,” and Janell took Novalie to see “Yogi Bear.”
Novalie and I read three chapter books together, well actually, we read two together and she read one on her own. “Goosebumps, Monster Blood II,” “Rainbow Magic, Shannon the Ocean Fairy,” “Rainbow Magic, Ruby the Red Fairy.” Over 300 pages in all!
Played countless hours of Wii Mario Kart and Wii Mario Bros.
Had friends over.
Had a lunch playdate with friends.
Spent 4 days in Richland for New Year’s. (Separate post coming)
Watched many Chrismtas movies, my favorites being “Dr. Suess’ The Grinch Who Stole Christmas” and the three “Santa Clause” movies.
Played a lot of board games! One of my favorite things!
Did lots of craft projects.
Lots of hugs and snuggles!
Ah…now I really miss Novalie and Kevin. The house is too quiet. It was a happy Christmas vacation!
I have never been big on New Year’s resolutions or New Year’s in general. I believe you should make resolutions often not just once a year, but I usually jot down a few resolutions because it does feel like the time of year that I could actually change some things if I really want to. 2010 was like a never ending roller coaster. There were a lot of good memories, but all the emotional baggage can stay in 2010 never to be picked up. I do know this, that I am a strong person and can put a smile on my face and continue on. I also know how blessed I am to be Novalie’s mother. If 2010 taught me anything it is that I am a mother. Through the disappointments after disappointments of trying to add to our family in 2010, through it all, the joy of knowing that I am a mother and I am a good mother was reiterated time and time again. I can’t say that those disappointments won’t repeat themselves in 2011, but I am going in with my armor on. I love that it is a new year with new possibilities. The chapter of 2010 is finally closed and right now 2011 is just a clean sheet of paper. There is something so promising in that!
So enough with the deep, dark parts of my heart, here are some fun resolutions that I am thinking of today!
- Start wearing lip gloss. Lip stick…too big of a step, but my lips are so thin and small, I am going to start with some lip gloss. I love the sparkly lip gloss at Bath and Body Works. Am I too old for sparkly? Ha!
- Learn and try some good recipes in my crockpot. (Any you would like to share, I will greatly appreciate). Basketball is coming up for Novalie which means little time to prep for dinner, so I need to get that crockpot going.
- I am not going to say lose weight because that is just setting myself up for failure. I will say that I am going to focus on loving my body now and tweaking a few things to be more healthy. If I lose weight in the process, so be it!
- Try, and I emphasize try, to be more social. I like to hole up in my house and not be seen by people.
- Read my quad combination, the whole thing.
- Go back to school! That’s right, I am going to brush up on my office skills so I can hopefully get a job in a school office. I am thinking of an office manger associate or an accounting assistant associate degree. I looked into a master’s because I have my bachelor’s, but I am not willing to commit to intense school for 4 years! Been there, done that! I need a job that I have summers off because summers are mine and Novalie’s play hard, party hard time.
- Get my hair cut more often. My hair grows fast and when it gets too long it is just stringy and yucky and weighs down all the curls. Right now, my hair is way too long, so looks like I can start this right away!
- Get rid of Bravo tv. I love the Real Housewives series a little too much……
- Wear big earrings. I have always felt too self conscious to wear big earrings because I am a tee-shirt and sweatshirt girl through and through and big earrings don’t necessarily go with that style. I know I am not going to turn into a fashionista because fashion is the most foreign thing to me and probably one millionth on my list of interests, but I am going to rock the sweatshirt big earring look.
- Save, save, save all during 2011, so we can take an awesome vacation to New York City in 2012. Novalie is fascinated by NYC right now. I think she can sense its’ energy and life. What better match for Novalie than NYC?! If she doesn’t end up training dolphins at SeaWorld, I totally picture her living in NYC.
- Stop saying totally, totally serious.
- Read as many romance novels as I can get my hands on. What’s wrong with that? My sister-in-law and I already have a pact to delete everything on each others Kindles when we die.
- Visit one of my most dearest friends I have ever had. And see the awesome life she and her family have built for themselves by the ocean.
- I have quite a few personal goals, but sorry, you don’t get to know those…..that is why they are called personal goals.
- Beat Novalie at Mario Kart just once.
- Love that little girl more than life itself and be the best mother I can be to her….wait, I already do that…..continue to do it!
- Be a better wife, which has a list a mile long underneath it, but it is that personal thing again.
- Get a regular babysitter and go out with my cute husband more often.
- And get some awesome rockin’ new flip flops for summer. I love flip flops in case you didn’t know and it is my resolution to own more.
I am going to kick the heck out of 2011! Bring it on, it can’t stop me!