A Little of This and That in September

Oct 14, 2017

September was a beautiful and busy month. Highlights included . . .

Kicking . . . off the month with a vacation in Ohio. Although maybe not your typical getaway
destination (but when you have family and a work class there, it gets elevated in importance), we found many, many things to love. From the apple orchards to Graeter's ice cream to an amazing book store in German village, we enjoyed every minute. (It also helped that we only brought the baby and left the rest of our kids with my mom, so it truly was a vacation.) We especially loved spending time with Mike's brother and his wife and darling little girl. They were so nice to host us and give us the Columbus tour.

Visiting . . . Kirtland. As part of our trip, we gave Mike's brother a break from us and drove up to Kirtland, home of many sites which hold special significance in our church. We were able to take our time and go on a bunch of tours (because, remember, no kids except for a perfect baby), and I was amazed at the incredible faith, sacrifice, and resiliency of these early members of the Church. On our drive back to Columbus, we passed through Amish country, which was lovely (except that we were driving for part of the time after dark, and I was terrified we were going to hit a buggy as we crested each hill at 60 mph).

Putting . . . the chili lime seasoning from Trader Joe's on everything. Zucchini, eggs, pasta, squash. Yum, yum, yum.

Training . . . Ian to sleep through the night. After our Ohio trip, and with the pediatrician's approval, we decided it was time to see if Ian could cut down on his middle of the night snacks. It was rough the first night (as it always is), but after that it's been pretty smooth (except that he also learned how to roll over this month, and so he sometimes wakes himself up doing that).

Regretting . . . my decision to not put Clark in preschool. All summer, I thought I had a preschool co-op all lined up, but then it didn't pan out quite the way I was hoping/expecting. The other moms all just wanted one morning a week. That suits me just fine on the weeks when it's my turn to teach, but really, Clark wants more than one day. He asks me every day if he gets to go to preschool, and it seems like an eternity to him in between Wednesdays (especially if, heaven forbid, it has to be cancelled until the next week). I really don't think three-year-olds need to go to preschool, but I think this three-year-old would have really loved it.

Buying . . . a zoo membership. It's been probably two years since we've had one (one can only go to the zoo so many times in a year without getting completely sick of it). But we went to the Columbus zoo while we were in Ohio, and being there with Ian made me realize that this was going to be a good year for it (with Bradley in half-day kindergarten, Clark in preschool only one morning a week, and Ian getting bigger and more observant every day), so we took the plunge and got one again.

Recognizing . . . the alphabet. One of Clark's summer goals was to learn the letters of the alphabet, and, after working on them with him for three solid months and seeing virtually no progress, I thought, Hmmmm, maybe he's not on the same academic trajectory as my other kids. And then, just as I was reminding myself that every child is different, with different strengths and gifts, yada yada yada, all of a sudden, the switch flipped, and he was ready to learn--in fact, was begging to learn. Now he seeks out opportunities to identify letters and sees them everywhere. It's really exciting. And the switch that made it happen? Letter Factory (cue hands over eyes).  

Anticipating . . . the arrival of a new baby. My brother and his wife just welcomed their first baby over the weekend, and so a few weeks ago, my mom, my sisters, and I took Meagan out for lunch and presents and lots of girl talk. So fun.

Loving . . . Maxwell's teacher, liking Bradley's teacher, and still deciding about Aaron's teacher. About that last one--we're trying to keep an open mind (and I avoid talking about my grievances in front of Aaron), but I can't help thinking his teacher would be better suited to teaching college kids instead of fourth graders. My main concern (and it's actually a pretty big one) is that he'll come away from this year hating school. That would be kind of a bummer.

Eating . . . the most delicious food at our Great British Baking Show Season Four finale date with our dear (and equally obsessed) friends. We learned our lesson when we had a similar date last year, and this time we brought a salad to cut through all the carbs from puff pastries and fougasse and sausage rolls and Viennese whirls (yes, everything was as good as it sounds). I love that show so much.

Listening . . . to an Agatha Christie mystery and the Lazy Genius podcast. The mystery was well done (but I wish I hadn't finished it right before bed), and the podcast is surprisingly helpful for being about fairly common sense stuff.

Celebrating . . . the newest six-year-old on the block. Bradley had been counting down the days (months, really) until his birthday, and it did not disappoint. He had a Lego cake, saw the new Lego Ninjago movie, and received a Snap Circuits set (which actually, all of the boys (including Mike) have been enjoying).

Hiring . . . someone to fertilize our lawn and spray for weeds. About midway through the summer, as our front lawn was slowly being overtaken by clover and our back lawn was getting thinner and thinner, Mike decided to just hire a lawn care company to do the fertilizing and weed control for us. And it's been awesome. We no longer have to think about when we should do it or what we should put on it. They just show up every month or so and know exactly what it needs. And we're already seeing positive results, which is making me so happy.

Cheering . . . on Aaron, Maxwell, and Bradley at soccer games. So. many. soccer. games. Mike and I are both relieved soccer season is over.

Finding . . . my hair everywhere. Sorry if this grosses you out, but every time I hit three months postpartum, my hair starts falling out. And it drives me crazy. I'm just hoping it lets up soon and that I'm not bald by the end of it. Anyone else have this problem after having a baby?

Getting . . . festive with Christmas in September. Mike's parents were visiting from Germany and won't be back until next March, so they distributed presents a few months early. My kids thought it was the best thing ever. And of course, in addition to the presents, Mike's dad did a giveaway filled with unique and unusual items scored at the German flea market, including an accordion (which thankfully found a different home than ours).

Knitting . . . and planning new projects and buying new yarn. A recap of this month would not be complete without giving you a knitting update. I made myself a new hat out of the dreamiest yarn ever (which my mom saw and promptly claimed for herself), and I started a cardigan for myself. I also signed up for a class at my local yarn shop. It begins this week, and I am just so excited for it.

Planning . . . out our Halloween costumes. Stay tuned!

Now tell me about YOUR September!


  1. Sounds like a lovely, happy, family month :)

  2. I think I'll look into getting an alphabet-learning DVD for my daughter soon (partly because she seems eager to learn and partly because I'm super sick of her requesting Moana every time I let her watch something! ha ha). Is that the one that you would recommend the most?

    Also, that Great British Baking Show get-together sounds divine. We too are big fans of the show over here, though I'm not sure I'm brave enough to attempt to make many of the things from it!

  3. Looks like another good month! I hope Aaron's teacher grows on him a bit. I do wish teachers had more of a "First do no harm" attitude -- please don't turn my kid off reading, or tell them that of course math is hard and boring!

    I loved zoo memberships with KG age kids, and if you go on a few trips most zoo memberships are reciprocal all over the place so you get in free when you are out of town. Have fun :-)

  4. Have been wondering how school/teachers were this year.
    What a wonderful memory to holiday with your sisters :-)


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