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Did you happen to read this article this week--> Gardasil Researcher Speaks Out ? If you didn't, please take a gander...especially if you have daughters approaching 11 or 12 years of age. Apparently, doctors recommend beginning these shots around that age. First of all, how sad is it that in our society it is a reality (simply perceived or maybe more) that girls of such a young age are thought to be having sex. I have had many talks with my 11-year-old, Sarah, about s.ex, the changes coming to her body (very quickly actually) and the idea of se.x ...well, let's just say, she doesn't seem to be "chomping at the bit" to get out there and experience it or anything. Second of all, how is it that doctors are pushing something like this vaccine when there are these risks attached to it? Since when is it more important to push pills/medicine than to take the proper care to ensure the risks of taking it are not more than the risk of that which it is supposed to prevent? Oh wait...we've been down this road for quite a while with hormonal contraception...
A few weeks ago, I opened up my comments to "anonymous" comments. The only ones I have gotten are spam, though. So I think I am going to switch that back. When I didn't allow anonymous comments, I still got spam, but only one or two comments every 6-8 months. Now I'm averaging about 15 a day. THAT, my friends, is annoying.
We start playing volleyball games this weekend! And so begins the 7 or 8 weeks of craziness that is coaching two teams. I hate admitting this, but it's so true. I should not have volunteered for coaching for two teams. I was worried about Dani feeling less loved if I didn't volunteer to coach her teams like I've always coached Sarah's. I shouldn't have worried about that. I wanted Dani to TRY volleyball and she was only seeming willing if I were coaching. I shouldn't have worried about that either. As it stands, Dani doesn't really like volleyball and is just hanging in there because I want her to fulfill her commitment and due to the amount of girls out for volleyball in her class, we have 2 teams of 6, so they are kind of relying on her playing. So, Saturdays are Sarah's games and Sundays are Dani's games. It's all good, though! The season starts flying by when there are games to be played! :)
Dani does seem to really enjoy swim practice though. She wants to go to every one available to her and she works hard the whole time she's there. She's getting stronger every day. Here's a pick I got of her doing stroke drills the other night:
|Doing the 8-kicks-on-this-side-then-switch-sides-and-do-8-more-kicks drill|
Speaking of volleyball, Sarah started getting overhand serves over the net from the serve line they get to use for their grade last night. It's interesting. With something like overhand serving, the girls really just need to get a feel for the technique of hitting the ball and get a little confidence. I actually saw the 2nd two serves Sarah got over the net and started going crazy and then her friend told me, "Mrs. Hughes, she's gotten 4 serves over!" and I realized I'd missed the first 2. Then I watched her continue to get some over as she practiced. I was pretty proud of her. I think she'll still be starting with underhand serves in games, but she'll progress at some point this season to overhand if she keeps getting them over like she is in practice.
It amazes me how quickly she has grown and how the coordination and things are all coming together. She still has not grown into her size 8.5 women's feet...but she's definitely getting there. Those of you who have heard moms say their children "change before their eyes" during puberty and think that sounds crazy -- well, believe it, they really do change before your eyes, looking more grown up from one week to the next.
|My pretty pre-teen|
Helen seems to really enjoy First grade so far. I have been able to witness this more this week as I have been off work and have brought them home from school each day. She immediately brings out her homework and her papers that have come home to share with me. She knows exactly what to do with her homework (they have some reading homework and spelling practice each night) and she gets right down to business. She's very proud that she's finished the first set of Magic Tree House books we have at home and has been asking for more of those. (She just LOVES Annie!)
Helen has suffered a bit of separation anxiety so far this school year in the sense that I have not had a lot of time for her. Helen NEEDS her momma. Really. I have been very busy at work and often have meetings or volleyball practices to run in the afternoons/evenings PLUS getting Dani to her swim practices two evenings a week. Then on Saturdays, we're running constantly with activities. I promised her a night out with me all to herself next Friday. She has reminded me every single day that I am taking her out next week.
She really is just too cute (seriously...I think I may need to ingest some relaxing chemicals as she enters the teen years, I don't think I'll be able to handle letting her out too often without):
Not to be outdone by the girls, Dominic is growing up fast, too. He's such a calming influence on our family. I know, I know, not too many people can point to their three-and-a-half year old boy and say he's a calming influence. But Dominic really is. One example was this week as I was getting breakfast for all the kids before I began the morning rush of getting Vincent to daycare and kids to school for the day. I made pancakes. The girls were driving me nuts, fighting about where the hairbrushes were, how they were going to wear their hair, minding each others' business over who had or hadn't eaten and brushed their teeth in the wrong order. Gah! And there Dominic sat, patiently waiting for his pancakes. When I set them in front of him, he didn't whine that I'd cut the pieces too small or that he didn't have enough butter or syrup, he simply ate what was in front of him. I made mention of what a patient boy he was! Later, I took him to the dentist (his first visit!! he was so good!) and I heard him tell the hygienist that he was a "very patient" boy. The next day, I took him with me to a prayer group, where he announced to at least one of the moms there that he was "a very patient boy."
Additionally, I think he's reading a bit. He will get the "Step 1" readers down from the shelf, and every so often come to us to ask us what a particular word is and then go sit down and read the books. I am not sure he's getting word-for-word, but he's getting more words than not.
Here is a picture I took of him after his dentist appointment (he has trouble looking at the camera for some reason):
|Clean Teeth! He's a "very patient" boy. Yes, he is!|
Vincent is ornery as ever. I give you exhibit A:
And then I give you exhibit B (Vincent watching his tantrum):
But he is so darn cute that he gets away with it!
Exhibit C: Tuesday evening, I saw Vincent crawl through the kitchen with a diaper around his foot. I thought he must have been playing in his diaper stash, so I grabbed it, it was dry, but since his foot had been in it, I threw it away. About 10 minutes later, I picked him up to put him on my hip and he was all wet! I hold him out from me and say, "Vincent, how did you get so wet!?!" and I see that the diaper I had thrown away had been the one he was wearing. Somehow, without unsnapping his romper or unbuttoning the top or removing any outer clothing whatsoever -- he had shimmied his diaper down his leg and off!!! The little Houdini!! haha.
But he really is very cute:
|I got my shoe OFF mommy! That's not all I'm good at, though. :)|
|What a cute little helper at the grocery store!|
BONUS: One thing I have found difficult since having 5 kids is getting good pictures with all of them. It's hard to get all of them to look at the camera and smile at the same time. But I really want pictures of all 5 kids! At the Irish Fest a couple weeks ago, I got a good one and here it is:
Enjoy your Friday! Please go visit Grace at Camp Patton for more Quick Takes!