Clara's trying out something new this year - cheerleading! She is cheering on base for the flag football teams. It's very relaxed, and perhaps not a great indication for her as to what cheerleading is typically like, but I thought she might enjoy it. So far she really seems to like it, and Jonathan can do all the cheers right along with her thanks to her fine instruction :) Practice started a couple weeks ago when she was in socer camp (thus the outfit below) and we've had 2 games so far.
'I said a D-O-W-N and that's the way you get down!'
Ready for the 1st game
Sassy even on the field
'We're the girls from the USA'
Flashing the cheerleader smile!
'Defense, Hold that line!'
Game 2: At rest
'We're the girls from the USA'
'Bang, Bang Choo choo train, come on baby do your thing'
It's actually almost comical to watch the games/cheerleading. The cheerleaders are 'Bulldogs', but they don't cheer for the same team every week. Instead they are given a time slot (5:30pm every Friday) and they cheer for one of the 2 teams playing at that time. The first week we watched the 'Colts' play the 'Chargers' and the whole time the cheerleaders were cheering for the Bulldogs. I don't think a single cheerleader understood the connection between them and the players on the field. Some girls (Clara) may not have even been aware there were boys playing flag football on the field. This week they actually cheered for one of the teams (the 'Eagles') on the field, but little other acknowledgement was made. To make it even more comical, the teams they're cheering for are an older age group, and those boys (and their coaches) are pretty serious about the game being played. The cheerleaders are simply there to 'do their thing!' But Clara seems to be enjoying herself. Another bit of irony, when Clara's cheering with the squad, she one of the least vocal, often looking down at her feet and not smiling unless prompted. However at home, she will get Jonathan to 'introduce her' to do her cheers for anyone on the street who will listen, screaming so loud you can hear her from inside the house, looking up and smiling like the most confident cheerleader you've ever seen. Somehow she just seems to get lost in the pack. Go Figure!
Yesterday I spent all afternoon reclaiming my minivan from all the crumbs, toys, splatters and clutter. Thank goodness for leather in minivans! When I put the minivan back together, I finally turned Matthew's seat around. This morning he got to try it out for the first time!
I moved Jonathan back up from the 3rd row too. Since Clara's at school all day now, a lot of my running around is with just the boys, so I thought they'd enjoy sitting next to each other.
Matthew really likes this whole new world, playing with Jonathan and being able to see me. I love finally being able to look back and see his smiling face as he breaks out in dance!
This morning I got Matthew's breakfast ready and then got him up. I set him down in the living room for a second. I got his bowl of oatmeal from the microwave, but then just set it on the table when I realized I'd neglected to wipe down his highchair tray from last night. I went into the kitchen to get a towel. After I wiped it down, I took the towel back into the kitchen. When I returned to the dining room where Matthew had crawled this is what I found...
Feeding himself with the spoon
He proceeded to try and pick it up off the floor and put it in his mouth! I guess he just couldn't wait!
Looking for something different to do with the kids, I decided to take them to pick grapes. We managed to talk a few of our neighbors into going with us, too. After checking the website, we were excited to find out they had more than just grapes. There were also peaches and tomatoes and even a few farm animals!
Me and the kids with the Llama (It's bad when it's easier to get the llama to look at the camera than it is to get 2 of my kids to look!)
And the grapes! I typically prefer the red seedless grapes, but these were super sweet and yummy!
Testing a grape to see if this is a good bunch
Jonathan just kept eating as usual!
Eating from the stash in our wagon!
Cutting down another bunch
Now checking for ripe tomatoes
Jonathan wanted nothing to do with the tomatoes - so he waited until we were ready to pick peaches.
The peaches at this farm were bigger (and better) than the ones at the last farm we went to
Testing the peaches
Even Matthew wanted to test some for us!
I think he approves!
He stocked up!
Weighing our fruit
Our Tomatoes (Our neighbor promised to make some fried green tomatoes)
Enjoying a peach at home!
I made a fresh peach cobbler using Paula Deen's recipe - DELICIOUS!!!!!
The kids really like picking fruit now - when I told them where we were going, they were so exicted, they couldn't stop talking about it until we got there! I'm thinking about heading back out there and picking more peaches to can, they are so good!
My name is Torie Stein. I am happily married to Chris Stein, and the mother of 3 beautiful children, Clara, Jonathan and Matthew. We live in Lemoore, CA, but hope to make it back to the East Coast in about a year. We hope this blog will help us keep in touch with our family and friends. We hope you'll enjoy reading it.