Wow. Summer has flown by. The past few weeks have been busy with 4-H activities, basketball camps and birthdays. I had a birthday, Olivia turned 6 and Steven turns 2 today!
My parents visited this past weekend and Olivia went home with them for the week. She's already having a great time with them and seeing lots of deer and other wildlife. We will be traveling to Indiana to pick her up this weekend and we get to eat at Pizza King, one of our small town Indiana favorites. Normally, we would try to eat at Chic-fil-A, but since the one in Peoria will be ready in two months, that's not a big priority.
Sophia is almost 4 months now. She is such a happy baby and Olivia's little twin. She loves to talk and sometimes even sleeps for 7 hours at night.
Aaron has been practicing scripts for the Adventures in Odyssey contest to get a guest appearance on the show.
Bart has been running with the cross country team in the mornings. I'm very proud of him for sticking with this and waking up early.
When it's not so hot out, we ride our bikes in the evenings. The kids have also been enjoying our little pool. Rick and I are both trying to lose weight.
Audra finished her foods project today and judging is on Wednesday. Her cat care project is Thursday. She and Aaron have already completed archery. They helped with cleaning the project buildings and worked at the food booth. It was good for them both to volunteer and work hard. I had the baby in the sling at the food booth last night so she was my little helper!
Rick and I have been planning a Key Largo vacation for November. My parents have agreed to stay with all the children for a week. It will be difficult to leave baby Sophia, but I am pumping everyday and of course will need to bring the pump along on our trip. We plan to snorkel and Hookah dive. We are staying at a rental. The owner has a tropical fish and coral business and supplies aquariums, hobbyists, and pet shops with his finds. We get to dive with him and bring home whatever we catch. He has a special license, which today are no longer legally available to get in FL, to dive and catch in a specific area. He's grandfathered in so he's able to keep his business going. Most of what Rick gets for his own personal aquariums come from the Indo-Pacific so it will be nice to get something 'closer' that we caught ourselves.
We plan on visiting John Pennekamp State Park, which is an underwater park in the Atlantic. A 45 minute boat ride to get to it and you get an hour and a half of snorkeling time. The water temperature will be around 76, which they recommend 1/2 wet suits when it gets below that.
We also plan on taking an Everglades tour, which leaves right out of Key Largo. We will see Manatees, dolphins, alligators, tons of birds, etc.....
We are very excited to do this and see God's underwater creation.
We have really been enjoying our days off school. The kids have also been helping around the house and keeping Steven occupied. Since they are home more, they have more chores and responsibilities. They don't always like this but the'll get used to it.:)
The boys are going to be tutored every Friday starting June 8. They don't know this yet but they really need help in math and they won't sit down with me so we are hiring Bart's 6th grade teacher.
We leave for vacation next week. We will be visiting Rick's brothers and their families in southern IN and we will also be going to Holiday World for two days with them.
We are planning on getting our patio re-done. It is in a very sad shape right now and this almost concludes our home improvement.
Rick has been busy adding 4 new aquariums. It's amazing how he has everything set up and working together. I told him he should start charging admission for people to come see.
Sophia will be 2 months old next week. She is doing very well and is already over 12 pounds. Steven just loves her, as do all the kids. Steven wants to nurse every time she nurses. Sometimes I just have to say no and he doesn't like that much but he is in no way ready to wean. He is still a 'baby' but he looks like a giant compared to Sophia. He's using more words now but understands far more what we say to him.
Well, that's about it for now.
Oh, and Audra and I are reading the Harry Potter series this summer. We are on the 2nd book.
I've been battling a UTI for the past 3 weeks. The first antibiotic I was on 2 weeks ago did not take care of it. It was for the specific bacteria that is causing my infection. I'm allergic to penicillin and we tried an antibiotic that was safe for breastfeeding. Well, now my doctor has me on an antibiotic that is not breastfeeding safe so I have to pump and bottle feed with formula for 10 days. I told my doctor that I would risk going on penicillin but she was not going to let me do that.
Sophia had her first bottle about 2 hours ago. She did pretty well. She burped about 8 times and took 3 ounces. She did fuss a lot during the feeding and afterwards and it was hard not to just nurse her. She has been doing a lot of comfort nursing. So now we are using the pacifier for her fussiness. I'm not looking forward to night feedings. Please pray for me, Sophia and Steven, as he still nurses too.
My parents are leaving in the morning. My mom was here for the past 3 weeks. She was so helpful to me, especially with Steven. Now I have this new challenge of bottle feeding and pumping. Please pray that it goes smoothly and that Sophia will remember how to nurse when this is all over.
We are planning an overnight birdwatching getaway this Friday. We are taking full advantage of my mom being here to stay home with all the kids, except Sophia. We will be staying in a cottage on the river.
This marsh is the largest freshwater marsh in the US. We have our bird checklist and binoculars ready. We plan on taking a small hike and driving to various look out points. Hopefully Sophia will tolerate being in the sling.
I would really like to go back in the summertime with the whole family and take the boat tour.