Friday, August 28, 2020

Five on Friday


School Pictures

I realized I never shared my babies' school pictures from last year! Look at how cute they are - didn't these turn out so great???


Nature Rules

I promise I won't write about every nature adventure the kids and I take {and I haven't!}, but over the weekend we went on a 2 mile trail and just had the BEST time. A lot of times Trent is grumpy and is rushing us to leave, but this time everyone got along really well and I was so proud of my little trio. We are right on pace for my goal of 20 with 12 under our belts!


Fall Activities

We're gearing up for some activities for all of the kids for the first time EVER. I'm so excited everyone has something they want to try, but I'm also curious how families coordinate more kids or more activities, ha!

Trent is going to play flag football for the first time - he has been obsessed with football for quite awhile, and I'm so excited to see him try!

Drew wants to go back to gymnastics - she's always only been so-so about dance. She's not competitive, so I'm not sure she'll ever enjoy a team sport - we tried soccer twice, and she definitely was NOT into it. She seems a little interested in volleyball, but all the leagues here start at 8. And we will get back into horseback riding too - she's going to be busy!

And Ms. Paige is ready to get back to ballet and tap!


Lots of Pee

Paige has been 100% out of diapers for about 6 weeks. She has had zero accidents until the last week. And the highlight of this week was when she peed in her bed around midnight and then peed in our bed at 4:30. It was also amazing when our super expensive Sleep Number special mattress pad leaked onto our new bed. Sigh. 

Luckily, our warranty covers replacing the mattress pad plus the bed cover! But I did not enjoy changing clothes and taking sheets off beds in the middle of the night or washing a TON of bedding and clothes and towels the next day!


Low Carb

I don't know if anyone has noticed my lack of weight loss updates...but it's because I am struggling and haven't had any losses to report, boo. I've actually gained back 6 pounds, and I'm so mad at myself.

I decided to do a couple of weeks of low carb to hopefully jump start getting back on track, and I've made it through 4 days. I've been really focusing on getting lots of vegetables in and 4 days in, I'm feeling really good! Definitely craving carbs and sugar, and I'll be happy to get back to macros in another week and a half ha. 

Thursday, August 27, 2020

25% Complete

We have survived 5 days of virtual school out of the planned 20. I'm hanging onto the probably deluded thought that they will start school and stay in the classroom in 3 weeks, ha.

This K to 6th grade comparison is giving me all the feels.

Trent was not really excited about his teacher when he first saw her, but she seems to be growing on him. This is her first year teaching Montessori, but she's been teaching for over 20 years and seems really nice. He was also bummed at first to not recognize more kids in his class, but there is at least 1 boy that he likes, and I told him he's really likable, so I don't worry about his ability to make friends. I DO worry about his ability to NOT crack jokes and NOT get in trouble but never his ability to make friends. {grin}
Such a silly girl

Drew does have a new teacher this year {because her teacher from last year is a virtual only teacher this year}, and she was upset at first, but she has already adapted and really likes her new teacher. Ms. Danushi seems to be really sweet and interested in the kids {from what I can hear on zoom}, and Drew thrives with kindness. She is already participating in her zoom calls, eager for her assignments, and happy happy happy. Her best friend from Kindergarten is in her class again this year which is a really great surprise.

Little Paigey Paige had a rough first zoom call - she hid in the corner and wouldn't participate until the last minute. But starting with Day 2, she is back to being her normal sunny self. Her new guide, who unfortunately won't be her permanent teacher, is so fun and engaging, it would be hard for a little kid to not enjoy it. She has a 15 minute zoom each morning with the other 3 year olds and then has a few activities we can do at home {one day was several activities about circles} and an 'assignment' for the next zoom {today's is to bring something blue to the meeting}. I think she's going to adjust pretty quickly once they are on-campus.

Overall, we are surviving. If we weren't having help every day, I think I would really be struggling. 30+ years of teaching {and the majority of that being elementary school} is definitely coming out when my mom is here.

PE with Babs!

The main thing the big kids have done is a diagnostic and it has been a nightmare. The system doesn't tell you when you're done, and I finally just stopped the kids after I figured out Trent had done 230 questions and Drew had done over FOUR HUNDRED. If you can't figure out what my kids need to learn with that number of questions, then your platform sucks, ha. But both of the guides agreed with me that the kids had done enough! 

Trent is starting to get some virtual lessons, and I'm hoping Drew does soon too. It feels like a really slow start, and it's a bit chaotic {check Google classroom Stream, check the Schoolwork tab, check the kids' email, check my email...repeat 7,403 times a day, log into this zoom, log into that zoom, download this assignment, log into ClassKick, then BrainPop, then Lexia, then IXL...sigh}, so I'm sure by the time we finally feel like we're in a good routine, we'll be back on-campus. But since I fully expect a classroom, if not the whole school at some point, to close, this will be good practice, I guess!

Really feeling this one right about now

One of the main things Montessori focuses on between the students is grace and courtesy. If nothing else, I can practice this as well! 

Tuesday, August 25, 2020

Currently: I Hate Online School

 Current Book

This is VERY interesting.

Current Song

Easier by 5 Seconds of Summer

Current TV Show

Current Podcast/Audiobook

Listened to this on audiobook...really fascinating!

Current Drink

I got this cocktail mix this weekend. It's currently marinading in my fridge.
I am so excited to try it!!

Current Food

Brent made fajitas tonight and they were EXCELLENT!

Current Shame-Inducing Pleasure

I have been eating A LOT of peanut butter m&ms. MUST STOP.

Current Outfit

Nothing exciting here - workout clothes!
I was hoping to get my new headband in the picture but obviously failed ha.

Current Celebrity Crush

Brent is FINALLY watching The Office with me. I am loving seeing Jim and Pam's love story unfold with someone who's never watched it. Love these 2!

Current Mood

I was being a little dramatic with my title, but school is STRESSING ME OUT.

Current Anticipation

We're starting to make plans for a little staycation in September, yay!

Current Wishlist

I need new jeans in a smaller size, so excited. I am debating trying this girlfriend jean style from Grace & Lace...

Current Film

Allison and I are working on our birthday movie plan, I will DEFINITELY have something to write about in the coming weeks. It's been SO LONG!

Current Picture

Park play with these 2 peanuts XOXO

Monday, August 24, 2020

Meme Monday

 I think we all need a laugh today. I have cried every day for at least the last week about school. I had some girlfriend time on Saturday and had MAJOR waterworks. I feel like most of my friends with school-age kids are not happy about something related to school right now. So let's laugh, shall we?

I screenshot this from an IG story because it was too funny.
I even showed it to my own MIL, so hilarious.

I always have good intentions when the day starts...

People in Texas understand this one.


I sent this to my boss, ha.

Isn't this so true?

Here's to a better week for everyone!

Thursday, August 20, 2020

Back to School We Go: Our Annual Questionaire

It's that time again! We start school today! I asked the kids our annual questions, we all enjoying doing this every year, they were super eager to answer this year, and we had lots of giggles as we answered.09 

Favorite Color:

Trent: Blue

Drew: Light purple

Paige: Pink, blue, purple, and white

Favorite TV Show:

Trent: The Simpsons

Drew: The Baby Sitters Club

Paige: Barbie {she really watches a lot of YouTube videos}

Favorite Movie:

Trent: Ace Ventura 2

Drew: Frozen 2

Paige: Frozen 2

Favorite Toy:

Trent: iPad and laptop

Drew: Hatchimals

Paige: Barbies

Favorite Book:

Trent: The Hunger Games

Drew: Unicorn School

Paige: Pinkalicious

Favorite Food:

Trent: Whataburger

Drew: Toast and apples

Paige: Suckers

Favorite Place:

Trent: San Diego

Drew: New York {when we go}

Paige: Mommy's bed

Favorite Part of School:

Trent: Recess

Drew: Reading time

Paige: Nothing

Favorite Part of Summer:

Trent: Everything

Drew: Swimming

Paige: Swimming

Favorite Holiday:

Trent: My birthday

Drew: Valentine's Day

Paige: Presents

Favorite Thing to do with Mom:

Trent: Read

Drew: Snuggle

Paige: Snuggle and read books

Favorite Thing to do with Dad:

Trent: Watch old movies

Drew: Boss him around

Paige: Candy {She means he buys her candy}

Favorite Thing About Trent:

Drew: That he's my brother

Paige: Kisses

Favorite Thing About Drew:

Trent: How kind and sweet she is, how fun she is to be around, how energetic she is

Paige: Shoes

Favorite Thing About Paige:

Trent: How spoiled she is

Drew: That she's my sister

What Are You Going to be When You Grow Up:

Trent: Undecided

Drew: Baker

Paige: Ice cream

Who Are You Going to Marry:

Trent: Undecided

Drew: No one, I'm too young

Paige: Daddy

How Many Kids Will You Have:

Trent: 1, if any - I want to continue the Gurley name so if it's a girl I'll have to keep going

Drew: 2

Paige: 4

Monday, August 17, 2020

The Latest and Greatest with School

We start school on Thursday. Virtually of course. Right now, the school is saying 4 weeks of 100% virtual, but time will tell if that is accurate or not. We committed to returning to school in-person once it has re-opened, but that wasn't an easy decision [see Ariel meme below ha]. I keep saying we need to find a way to live with COVID instead of around COVID, and returning to school seemed necessary.

As of me writing this post, we know who Paige's teachers and Trent's teachers are. One of the benefits of a Montessori education is you stay in the same class for 3 years. Well, there has been really high turnover at our school {like every other school}, and Trent's teacher left. I am REALLY upset because Trent was pretty bonded to Mr. Blackburn, and even if Trent could be difficult, they had 2 years vested into a relationship, and now we get to start over. Sigh. I don't know Paige's guide, but her assistant is the sister of her assistant last year at our old school. Paige is really nervous about going back to school - I don't blame her given she's been home for over 5 months now. But at least I *think* it helped her to hear Ms. Rossy's sister would be in her class this year???

What's frustrating is Drew's teacher hasn't left, but because they are dedicating certain teachers to virtual and certain to in-person, we don't know yet if Drew is keeping her guide. She LOVES Mrs. Worcester, so I really hope they will be together again this year. I know none of this is the school's fault, but it's all so frustrating and sad. I have been obsessively refreshing my email all weekend as we wait for the teacher emails to come through. That should surprise exactly zero people. {grin}

During a webcast a few weeks ago, I got a little upset at some of the COVID-related guidelines and seriously considered keeping them home longer, but we ultimately decided {hoped?} the benefits of returning would outweigh the negatives. I'm really bummed that the school has decided ALL children will wear masks all day. I keep picturing Paige in a mask all day, and I want to cry. The administration has said they will have 'mask breaks' and also be outside more, but I still hate this. I also hope they get to actually play with their friends and have PE and recess and collaborate in class. Brent and I NEED to work and it seems to be getting harder as time goes on to have them home, so I think {hope?} this is good for all of us.

We haven't seen details yet on how exactly distance learning will look. We know it's going to be different than the spring, which was really just a band-aid. From what I've heard, it's going to be a mix of zoom meetings/lessons and posted video lessons with assignments that need to be turned in. I think they are trying to limit the amount of live zoom calls and adding the recorded videos to help working parents manage. 

How we are thinking things will work over the next 4 weeks: My parents have offered to help us 3 days/week. BEST NEWS EVER! I will either go to their house or they will come to ours and they will help coordinate zoom calls, watch videos, help with activities, and help keep the kids entertained. My mom was a PE teacher for over 20 of her 30+ years of teaching, so I have asked her to also get them moving more AND she's agreed to start teaching Trent and Drew piano too!!! My in-laws have said they will help 1 day/week, but they don't want to do school work since they were never teachers but are happy to entertain them which will be amazing. I have a ton of vacation time saved up, so I imagine I'll be using it for the remaining day each week.

I'm extremely anxious about how all this is going to actually go down, but I'm so thankful for all the help we have from our parents, and of course, that Brent and I are in this together. I know we'll manage, we both have supportive bosses/jobs, and we have really great kids. It's just a lot, so I also wonder how much wine I need to buy this week... {grin}

Friday, August 14, 2020

Canyon of the Eagles

My mother-in-law and I have started a new tradition of taking a trip just us and the kids {we added Brent's niece to our crew}. This year we went to a resort about an hour away called Canyon of the Eagles. It is a resort focused on nature, which was right up my alley with my goals for 2020!

First things first upon arrival, poinsettias! 
{champagne + cranberry juice}

View from our balcony!

The first thing we did upon arrival was hit up the lake! We played for several hours, and it was a perfect spot. I forgot Paige's life jacket, but she could walk quite far out without any problems and swam back and forth between Janet and me a ton. The pool was closed and it was actually not a bad thing because it was 5' at the shallowest!

Building sandcastles

Later that night we went to the resort's observatory and got to view several things in space through the telescope. We got a close-up of the moon, and we also saw Jupiter and Saturn. It was so cool! Paige couldn't really figure out how to use the telescope, so she didn't enjoy it, but everyone else really liked it.

My bed partner!
Sleeping girls!
Bright and early Saturday, we went on a guided nature hike. This was the highlight of the trip for everyone! {Except poor Paige who was bored again and kept asking to go back 'home'}

Our guide, Willard
Willard was such an amazing guide! He patiently answered all our questions and taught us so much about the plants and animals we saw along the way!

This plant is super poisonous and 2 berries can kill a child!
I can't remember the name he told us in Italian, but it means beautiful killer!

Me and the big girls

My handsome boy!! {How is he 11?!?!}

Loved this view! Willard talked about it being FULL of flowers in the spring.
I really want to go back and see it all in bloom with Texas wildflowers!

Can you find the hearts??

This tiny performer found a stage and gave us a show {grin}

More drinks!

We went down to the lake again after lunch and spent several hours in the water. There's not much else you can do when it's 100 degrees. The water felt great and the kids had a blast playing!

After we ate, on the main patio they had s'mores and a movie under the stars. They showed The Little Rascals. The kids acted disinterested in the movie but loved it!
Gorgeous hill country sunset
We came home early Saturday morning - tired but happy! I can't wait to plan next summer's trip.