Sunday, April 29, 2012

school days

I can not believe we are down to only 4 1/2 weeks left of school. This second semester has flown by and been such a turn around from first semester experience. I still am confidant we did the right thing by bringing Jaxon home to home-school part time in the afternoons. I have seen such a difference in his personality, emotions, and his over-all happiness. It's been a good, good thing for our family. I have been learning so much about myself, my kids, our family, and just a little different view on life in general with this new routine. I love the extra time I have with my kids in the afternoons and it's been a challenge for me to plan and be prepared to stay ahead of my 8 year old boy. Everyday is a lesson for us as we do life together and I'm just so thankful to have this season to do "school" and our everyday life this way. Like any teacher and student though, we are all itching for the last day of school to arrive and shout "summer break"! Makes me think of the book "When It's the Last Day of School" by Maribeth Boelts...we just might explode ourselves here when May 30th rolls around :) Who doesn't love summer break!?!?

 One of the fun perks to home-schooling...field trips. We visited a few museums this winter/spring and to my surprise each of us really enjoyed what we found and learned. I am a hands-on learner and being able to see things helps me understand so much more. It's been fun to connect fun field trips with what we are learning in the books at home!

 Another perk of homeschooling a little... when the kids are overly tired, I just push school-work back a bit and let them nap :) They wake up much more ready to learn and tackle the days assignments!

 A favorite of mine as a part-time home-schooler...classrooms OUTSIDE! The weather has been awesome for just this too. We've spent many afternoons on the back-deck or in the back-yard swing doing our work together.

 Of course, when you only have one teacher and one student (or two when Austin joins in), you get your work done much faster then a typical classroom setting. Do you know what that means? Yup, more time to enjoy wagon rides and park play time! 

 Carson has been a real buddy and taken good naps almost every afternoon since we started schooling at home so we can finish our lessons each day. SO thankful for that transition!!

And every so often we get a fun guest teacher :) This day it was science with Miss Patterson!

We've got a few big topics to cover this month and then we will be winding down. Summer is just around the corner and we can't wait!

Friday, April 27, 2012

speaking of eggs

With all the chicken talk around here, I almost forgot to post about these eggs! Some friends of ours had a super fun idea to "egg" us :) My boys loved it! We of course had to pass it on... each family did 2 other families and I think the pattern was making it's way to a bunch of yards around Easter time! Great idea, Hofferts and Williams! All you do is fill Easter eggs with candy, sneakily hide them in your friends yard, knock on the door and run and hide! It was too cute to watch our friend's little ones find the eggs and then get to surprise them. I like this so much, it may get added to our tradition list.

What!?!? We've been egged!?!?

finding the eggs
Our egging crew!

We ganged up with another family to egg our good friend, Addelyn... the babes were real troopers :)

ready to do some egging!
hiding and waiting

then we headed to our good buddies...Mason, Jillian, and Jentry!

Fun, fun!

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Carson, 9 months and counting

April has been a month of new things around here and Carson is no exception! He is busy as ever. He officially is crawling and crawling he does!! Between his worm scoot and his crawl he can get anywhere he wants to on ground level. He also will attempt to get down from any high level, head first. This boy is a mover and loves to chase you, follow you, find you hiding behind a wall, and keep up with you walking around the house. He either likes to be on the ground moving, on my hip, or playing with random things he finds on the floor :) He loves food too and will try anything. His favorites are cheerios, avocado, carrots and sweet potatoes. He prefers veggies over fruits and will try to grab any food we have on our plate. I let him use mashed potatoes the other night for "art time" and after the diaper I got to change later, I think I'll wait on anymore of those just yet. :) Carson still enjoys books, things that shake and make a noise, stroller rides, wagon rides, exploring the grass in the yard, faces, the dogs, and of course the chicks. Oh, and he loves to put anything and everything in his mouth still. Yuck. His blond hair is getting thicker and he is wearing 9 month clothes mostly, some 12 month stuff. He is sleeping great most days still and nights are fine, predictable at least :) He loves his binkie and blue blankie at nap time and is a tummy sleeper. He "coo's" or talk to himself to settle in before nap or as he rides in his car-seat. He has 4 teeth and I won't be surprised if he walks before 1, like Jaxon did. These Hansen boys...always got something to be moving around for. I attempted to snap his pictures on Sunday, but he moved so quick I had to reposition him about 10 times!! Carson is a sweet boy and I can hardly believe we'll be blowing out candles for his first birthday in just a few months.

About the only time you will see him still...sound asleep after a full day of playing. (He also slept in his crib for the first time over-night on his 9 month mark on life...until 2am at least :)

Sunday, April 22, 2012

Thursday, April 19, 2012

the girls are here!

One of our other spring adventure's! If you want to follow the fun of the girls arriving at this house (or maybe I can say home-stead these days?), jump over to my food blog!

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

8 year old party!

Every year I let my kids choose their birthday party theme. As Jaxon gets older his is always sports themed :) Surprised? This year he couldn't decide between his favorite sports, so we did an "all sports" friend party and they played his 3 favorite games. Football, basketball, kick-ball. Easy enough and perfect for his group of pals. I pushed his party back a couple weeks from his actual birthday hoping for some warmer weather for outside game playing. The weekend of his birthday it was 80. The weekend of his party it was barely 55 with the wind. Go figure! It was still a fun party with lots of good friends. I'm so blessed to have some girlfriends always willing to huddle around and help for these events so I can hang out with the kids and not have to be stuck in the kitchen the whole time. One of my friends helped me make all the decorations before the party day and another perfected painting basketball sandwiches for me during it! Then a couple of guy friends came to help run the games and boy craziness control patrol. I have the best friends :) 

Still can't believe we have an 8 year old. He is growing so much. I've seen so many steps be taken in the last couple months. He's really become a great helper, aware of where a need is and offering to step in and do it. For awhile we talked about asking how we can help others during devotions and using the question "how can I help you"? This was last semester and I was pretty sure it was going in one ear and out the other. Jaxon suddenly asks me many times a day how he can help me. I love seeing him develop this characteristic. It is a cool picture to see something you've worked on become a real fruit of your labor. Jaxon is pretty "motherly" with his younger brothers, almost too much with Austin sometimes, but still very in tune to what they need or being empathetic towards them when they are upset. I don't know if it is a mix of being home more and nurturing relationships around here or just getting older and maturing or after hearing something 100 times things are setting in finally... but I am so proud of this little man of mine lately. Well, I always am, but lately he has just made me proud to be his mama. He is still a boy and has plenty of moments where I want to pull my hair out, but he has just really turned a corner here as he has welcomed being eight! He has a pretty big front, but underneath is a sensitive little spirit. He loves anything his dad likes and tries often to impress his dad. He is all sports and constantly is making up a game of some sort. He is competitive, much like his father too. He is very much a self learner. I often do something with him and he wants to just figure it out on his own. He doesn't like messing up or being late and I sometimes have to talk him through relaxing instead of stressing about little things (not that I think being late is okay, but he freaks if he thinks he will be late for school and almost never is). He loves playing with his friends and cousins, one on one time with either parent, his neighbors Tina & Rachael, watching Disney (he would be a TV junkie if I let him!!), movie and pizza night, shooting hoops in the back, playing catch with mom or dad, chasing Austin, racing cars with Austin, and exploring. He is at a really fun age and the humor of an 8 year old is, well, funny, you might say. Happy 8th year of life baby boy!!

 football strawberries!
 basketball shoot-out
 kick-ball game
 basketball sandwiches...Thanks Jen!
 Austin and Jentry sneaking food while waiting for the boys! (Thanks Kris for decoration support :)

 the little people having their own lunch party
 the boys

 eat'in time
 the things boys say around a dinner table...

 pinata time!

And I didn't even take a picture of his "cake" of choice this year! Ha! He wanted home-made apple pie instead of pie baking I did! Only one boy said to me "where's the real cake"? :-)

Monday, April 16, 2012

sound of music

Okay, one of our new adventure's here at our house is the addition of a new piano! I've always known that I wanted my children to have some sort of experience with piano. For a handful of reasons... from being well-rounded, helping with concentration, coordination, building self-esteem (it's a lot of dedication and hard work to learn piano as a kid), benefits academic performance (especially math), and hopefully some day they can use their musical abilities to serve within our church. As Jaxon entered kindergarten I got more serious about looking for pianos. We have a friend who is a piano tuner and between him and a few other friends, I've had eyes watching for a good deal for a couple years. (Good deal meaning almost free, yet quality instrument since our budget doesn't leave much room for such a buy)! We finally found one from a great family and Q checked it out and promised it was a very good instrument to invest in. Thanks to Grandma Pat & Grandpa James, we now have a new (to us) beautiful piano. Thankfully, my parents had me in piano lessons for a handful of years and I know enough to get Jaxon through first couple years of lessons. We'll probably need to find a "real" teacher by that point! 
Jaxon is so excited to learn and has already mastered a couple songs. We had our first real lesson this last week. I forgot what a new piano player sounded like... he is doing well, but I am looking forward to hearing the boys play away to a real tune :) Between the three of them, the chances of that happening are good, right?
Yeah for our piano playing adventure and the sound of music in our home! Thanks to Quentin and the grandparents and my brother August (heavy lifting people!) for making it happen! (also- if you ever need an absolutely fantastic piano tuner...Quentin is your guy!!! Seriously. He's pretty darn good!)

Friday, April 13, 2012


These brothers make me smile. They have their moments like all siblings do when one is driving the other crazy or torturing one another or fighting about a plastic cup (really, they argued over a cup a few days ago). But they have some of the best moments together too. Having Jaxon home more in the afternoons has been so good for fellowship amongst us members that are home during this part of the day together. Jax and Austin have had some really, really good time to just be each others helper, playmate, and pal. I was preparing dinner in the kitchen the other night and I heard rolls of laughter from the family room. They were watching Funniest Home Video's (must take after me, I crack up at this show and Dave is embarrassed every time I watch it and just die laughing). I snuk back and watched them laugh and laugh and laugh. Laughter from little boys is something I love to hear in this house. I will never ever tire from this noise being my background as I work away in the kitchen!