Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Table Talk

Here is a little glimpse into our dinner conversation this evening...

Tage: Mom...ask me what the square root of 81 is.
Mom: Huh...the square root of what?????
Tage: ask me what the square root of 81 is.
Mom: ask your dad, i don't know the square root of 81....
Tage: NO! ASK ME!
Mom: OH...Tage what is the square root of 81? (big smile)
Tage: The square root of 81 is 9!!!!!
Mom and Dad...Tage! Great Job are you learning that in 1st grade math...NO...Uncle Scott told it to me at choir!

Soon after Tage announced to us all that he knew the square root of 81, Simon was chomping at the bit to share a little of his new found knowledge!

Simon: Mom, Mom, Mom....I know my address and phone number!
Mom: That's great Simon can you tell me?
Simon (LONG PAUSE...THEN VERY,VERY, VERY SLOWLY) 6...6...*...7...*...*...2...thats my phone number....um, um, um...1...*...*...2...Millerdale....Avenuuuu...Wenatchee Washington.

I have to say...I know all parents say this so here goes...MY KIDS ARE ADORABLE AND GENIUS TO BOOT!

Monday, September 29, 2008

From Blurry to Bright Perspective

I am hoping that I can look back on these years with a bright vivid colorful memory, and not a blurry I'm not sure who did what during what years memory...I keep thinking that as the kids get older things will get easier and slow down, but I am learning quickly that things DO NOT slow down they get busier which does not make things easier. It is not hard like it was when I had a newborn, 2, 3, and 5 year old but it is hard in a management kind of way. Lots of people talking about different things at the same time while needing drinks and fresh rolls of TP in the bathroom. Meanwhile, I am trying to plan meals, adjust budgets and figure out when I am going to get to the grocery store between the time I drop Simon off at kindergarten and when Ben needs to go down for a nap. If the all essential trip to the store does not happen then the budget is blown because we end up at PaPa Murphy's 2 or 3 times in the week to pick up dinner....So what's my point? I LOVE MY BLOG! I am recording our life, writing about it, posting pictures of it and helping myself remember all the things I don't want to forget. I am planning to print and bind my blog into a book this year to help preserve the time I have spent journaling about "The Madsons". Thank you so much for reading and chuckling about the day to day lives of The Madsons" and their family and friends!

Friday, September 26, 2008

Chelsea Faye Byington

My sister's 3rd little girl was born this evening via c-section. Chelsea was a whoppen 8lbs 11oz and 20 inches long. She has chubby little legs and cheeks. We praise and thank God for such a healthy little baby and smooth delivery and recovery for Michelle
Byington Family now = 5!!!!

Alexis and Chelsea
Grandma Cindy, Kendra and Chelsea Michelle, Chelsea and I
Sweet little Chelsea...
I love how pink they are in the beginning!

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Family Pictures 2008

We had our pictures done yesterday by our friend Joy Farr. She says she's just learning but you'll see from the link below that she is actually quite good and in my opinion ready to open her business. She was amazing with the kids, loved letting them play and be goofy, and had an eye for capturing "The Madson Family". Thank you so much Joy for your beautiful work.

Family Pictures

Monday, September 22, 2008

Matching 101

Last night we had a sleep over with my sister's girls. Kendra wanted to wear Vi's clothes today and this is what she came out in...I have to admit even Ben thought it was funny! What's even more funny is that Kendra does not even see the humor in it! It must match because there are polka dots on both her socks and shirt AND her pants are blue and there are some blue polka dots on the shirt! Go figure, who made me the matching guroo...Maybe she does match!

Saturday, September 20, 2008

Summing Up Summer

I am no longer going to bore you all with massive yard pics. From here on out if you want to see progress I would LOVE company and you are welcome to stop on by and take a look!
Today as I was sorting through my pictures from the summer I realized we did a lot with our little family that I never blogged about...Here is a little summer in review, sit back and enjoy the show, it's a little over 4 min.

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Many Hands Make Light Work

Thanks to Cascade Landscaping, Tonka Excavating and their crews for doing an amazing and beautiful job on our property. They carefully helped us preserve some of our favorite HUGE plants, appropriately demolished our existing yard and designed the new with meticulous skill and hard work. At one point we had somewhere in the ball park of 10-13 guys here working HARD in the heat doing things that we just had no idea needed to happen. Thanks to a job well done!

Now it's time for Brant and I to tie up loose ends. When looking at the pictures you can see areas of fence that still need to be built and lots of clean up still needs to happen. Brant needs to install the gate opener this weekend (which means digging out some of the asphalt on our driveway to lay the electrical) and the play set is still in our driveway and will remain there for about another week. If I can keep the puppy from digging and my van away from the play set (I ran it over a couple of days ago) it will be smooth sailing from here on out! We are SO very happy with the new digs and can't wait to have the neighborhood kids over for a game of baseball!

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Big Thanks Goes Out To Dutch Girl Fabrics

My friend Sarah over at Dutch Girl Fabrics made me this FABULOUS purse! I love the look, the versatility, the size and most of all that no one (except my sister-in-law) has one like it. Don't you just LOVE the button and the polka dot handle! If you are interested in cute, funky fabrics I suggest you hop on over to Dutch Girl and give them a gander! Thanks again Sarah!

Sneak Peek

Here are some pics of the guys building the retaining wall. There is also a little sneak peek of the final project...they are finishing right now and will clean up tonight, I will post final yard pictures tomorrow~!

The wall is actually about 5ft...it starts with 2 layers of block under ground!
I love these guys! They put HARD into HARD WORK!!!!
Guess what arrived this morning! SOD, SOD and MORE SOD...Come back tomorrow to see The Madsons' new yard~!

Thursday, September 11, 2008

More Unbelievable Yard Demo

One my neighbors came over yesterday to encourage us and tell us how brave we were to allow our creativity to come to full fruition with this whole yard project. God knew what I needed to hear because this project has me quite nervous. I think I am going to need to suck up to my neighbors big time because the jack-hammering went on last night until about 8:00pm! You could hear it several blocks away! Cookies and pumpkin bread are in TALL order for the weekend. Ooooh...maybe in some cute baskets with hand made cards from the kids would also be fun! Gotta run...feel some creativity coming on!
Jack hammering one of the concrete slabs
Finished jack-hammering...Now for the clean up!

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

What We've Been Up To Part 3

Yard Demo
We HAD a beautifully "landscaped" yard with no where for the kids to play. By this time next week there will flat areas with grass for lots of frolicking...

Bobcat carefully trying to preserve a 10yr old Japanese Maple. We are keeping some of the nice plants.
Still working on the maple.
Saved this HUGE burning bush...look at those roots!
Mass destruction...I hope it looks and works as good as I am planning!
No more driveway

What We've Been Up To Part 2...

First Day Of School
Tage is in 1st grade and at school all day which means he got a new lunch box and BIG back pack...His favorite color is blue! Simon is in Kendra-garden (says Violet) and goes in the afternoon. We love The River Academy and are so blessed by them and their love for our children!
This is after school...they were tired and ready for a snack!
Tage 7yrs
Simon 5yrs
Tage, Simon, Violet and Ben
Back packs and lunch boxes packed and ready to go!

What We've Been Up To Part 1...

Fence Demo and Re-Construction...
These pics are out of order as I had to upload two sets and can't seem to figure out how to move the pics once they are loaded...My tech hubby is at work...so you get what you get!
New Fence along the side of the house Me, Staining the fence

Fence Demo
More fence demo from the driveway
Brant, Dan and Scott, digging post holes through the asphalt
Tage working on the post holes
Completed Fence Along Driveway

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Me Puddle

Ok...this is a little pre-first day of school post. I'll get pictures posted later today. I just have to journal about this, crazy, awesome, exciting, depressing, sad,exhausting day I am having! I could hardly wait for this day to arrive. Summer was too long, we were all running out of stuff to do, I was completely OUT OF STEAM, and emotionally I have been a train wreck over the last couple of weeks. There I said it openly, and have been feeling like an awful guilty mother for having such thoughts. I have been talking a lot with Brant about routine, setting schedules and it just didn't seem to make any sense to start anything until school started...So here I am the first day of school, we have established a pretty good schedule and I am finally sitting all by myself with two hours of ME time and I am a puddle!!!!! I can honestly say I miss my kids and the craziness! I think some of the puddleness is sadness to have them gone, but I can honestly say some of it is also a since of relief to get a little break. I must say this parenting stuff is hard work and I am so thankful God does not give us more than we can handle. Well, I'm off to blow my nose and put away laundry. I pick the kiddos up at 2:35 and then the three oldest have their first day of choir! Cheers to you all!

Thursday, September 4, 2008

One Thing Leads To Another!

I'm sure you all know what I am talking about! First, we decided to take our house off the market and make our property work for us...SOOO we have entered into a massive landscape project consisting of destruction and construction of all fences, all landscaping, concrete slabs, sprinkler systems etc. We are designing and installing a driveway gate including the electrical opener...which should be interesting...since Brant isn't an electrician! The best part is the silly little shed in the back is going away to a well deserving family which I am so excited about...BUT...the emptying of that shed has caused most of the difficulties surrounding this landscape/fence fiasco! Where to put the stuff in the shed leads to a mass re-org of our house and garage followed by an amazing amount of furniture moving and then the realization that we have some SERIOUS cleaning to do...ALL OF THIS FOR A YARD AND A FENCE....JEESH!!! I'll post some pics of the final product when it is all complete....

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Favorite Things

I have been keeping a little list of some of the things I love, and I think most families should consider having. They are random, and when I think of it I just jot it down in my handy dandy little note book...uggg I have been watching to much Blues Clues with my kids....These are in no particular order.

1. Groovy Girl Dolls
These are the cutest and funkiest little dolls! Violet and I both love them! They are soft little dolls that have yarn hair and are oozing with hipness! They are sweet and dressed very modestly. They come with all kinds of accessories, that are not so small that they get sucked up in the vacuum followed by tears about a lost Polly shoe or THE essential hair dryer from the Polly Pocket Beauty Shop (can you tell I can't stand Polly Pockets!) I highly recommend the Groovy Girls for your Groovy Little Girls! Oh and did I mention they are in the ballpark of $11-$20. That is significantly less than an American Girl doll...and a good compromise until your little lady is old enough to take care of such a lovely little doll.

2. Playmobil
This IS the most favored toy in the house from Tage on down to Ben. I can't say enough about this wonderful toy that allows their imaginations to go CRAZY! The little ones carry around the horses and guys, while Tage and Simon set up great big adventures and battles and act it all out while they build. This is a toy that hardly ever breaks, in fact we have some of Brant's Playmobil from when he was a kid.

3. NOGGIN by Nickelodeon...
For those of you who do not have TV...I am really sorry! I understand the desire to set a tone in the home that does not revolve around the boob tube...BUT...This little preschool station is SOOO fabulous! I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE it! There are NO commercials and all the programs are educational in some way. It does not seem like these shows really have much of a political/social agenda such as PBS Kids, just a fun little interactive pre-school station that cares about teaching kids their colors, numbers, and the importance of sharing and being kind to one another. All the stuff we are working on at home! Oh and by the way...if you go to Noggin.com you can view the different shows and possibly find them at your local video store.

4. LLBEAN...
Backpacks, Travel Duffel's, Sleeping Bags, and Lunch Boxes...Basically anything with a zipper. THEY DON'T BREAK...And if they do, they have a lifetime warranty..which they honer without question. I am not an advocate of DEBT however, if you have an LLBean card they give you free monogramming and shipping on anything you purchase. That ends up saving you somewhere in the ball park of $7-15, I have the card and use this feature often! Just remember to pay it off every month :)!

5. Match Box Cars

All my kids love to play with Matchbox Cars! They line them all up, drive them on the floors, walls and all furniture, and use them to knock down their Lego towers! A must have in our home!

Enough for now...I have more on the list that I will share later...

"Dad, I'm So Proud Of You"

...says Violet when he gives her a suprise new Groovy Girl Doll.