Friday, July 6, 2012

Home Day

Jane is on a roll today...Lucy is doing okay...Gene is a little slow.  All three have a chart, and Jane can actually read hers now (yeah!!) so she can work without asking for direction.  She just wrote a letter to Ellie (a little heartbreaking Kathleen, as it seems she thought Ellie would be up north...I helped her write a disclaimer on the back), and made a birthday card for Aunt Kate, who's birthday is tomorrow (so far, only her name is on it but I'm sure it's not finished yet).  She's picking up sticks now:)

Lucy spent a lot of time sleeping, a lot of time in the bathroom, a lot of time doing her hair, a lot of time practicing piano.  Moving slow, but moving.

Gene got a good start, but then actually went and lay down on the couch and said, "Mama, tell me when it's 12:00"  It was only 9:30.  Now he's up and a little more active.

I was moving laundry and suitcases and checking on the girls...Lucy was bursting with something to tell me.  "Mama, next Halloween you (or Papa) should dress up as a monkey and put bananas in people's candy buckets."

Friday, June 22, 2012

Some Random Thoughts...

1. I am hard-boiling eggs, and just heard furious chirping coming from the pot.  Not loud, but constant.  My first thought was to wonder if an egg had accidentally been fertilized, and now the chick was ready to come out and didn't want to swim in hot water.  I guess it was just some air bubbles coming from an egg, but I'll find out for sure when I take the shells off!

2. We had a rainstorm yesterday afternoon, and the girls and I went out with rainboots and umbrellas to enjoy it.  (It hasn't rained much these last couple months)  The street gutter was getting clogged, so we got some buckets and shovels and scooped up the leaves and muck around the drain.  The girls thought it was SO COOL to be in the street, and the cars that passed (this was 5:00 and many people were driving by) all slowed down and smiled as they drove by.  Well, the girls stayed with me for all of maybe 3 minutes.  Then they had an idea to make "mud soup" and brought their buckets up to the backyard.  Leaving me scooping the muck by myself in the hot sun (it had returned with a vengeance).  I was on a roll though and didn't want to stop, and there is a lot of gutter by our house (we're on a corner lot).  The cars that drove by this time didn't see me (there were no girls standing on the side wearing brightly colored raincoats) and gave me funny looks when I half-startled them.  I would have put some orange cones around me and a sign that said, "Gutter De-Cluttering in Progress" if I had them.

3. The kids were out catching fire-flies last night, and Lucy was so excited when she also caught a moth.  "It's a white moth, Mama!  They are very fast and very hard to catch!"  To Brendan- "I caught a white moth Papa.  What will you give me?"  (He had previously offered to pay the kids $5 if they caught a squirrel, and she was hopeful).  And then a few minutes later, to Jane who was awfully jealous that she had not also caught a white moth- "Jane, white moths are very hard to catch.  You might not catch one until you're 16..."  That really made Jane feel better.

4.  Gene's baseball season is almost over!  It's been fun, and we'll probably do the travel team again next year.  Probably:)

Thursday, March 8, 2012

March Update

We had Mid-winter break last week, and spent one day pretending we didn't have electricity. This was also the day Lucy was recovering from a fever, so she stayed on the couch most of the day. Lots of games, books, a fire to keep warm, a dipper instead of a faucet, and chicken and dumplings for dinner in the crock pot (kind of like a pot over the fire, right?)...

A couple days later we went to the Henry Ford Museum, the kids' first time.

We built and flew our own paper airplanes.

We sat in the bleachers with some other "people" and watched a movie about aerial stunt riders. Jane liked the statue she was next to...she thought it was definitely Thomas Edison.

The kids all said this was their favorite vehicle:)

This was not really one of Lucy's favorites, but I made her pick one of the other farm machines, and this was the closest one I think!

In other news, the girls are getting interested in the piano now.

And a random picture of breakfast one morning.

Everyone is healthy now and doing well. And thinking about Spring...

Monday, February 13, 2012

Quick Update

Why does everything have to be "quick" now? I feel like that's all I say these days! Well, I am posting a quick post for the sake of posting something...I'd rather post something longer, but I just don't have the energy:) It's bedtime!

  • Valentine's day tomorrow! The kids all made valentines on Sunday for their classmates...they are so old now, I just had to lay out things and give them some ideas, and they pretty much did all the work! Last year I felt like I was forcing the girls to finish "just one more", this year was much easier. Gene and I made brownies for his class party also
  • Brendan is at a meeting. Sometimes I like that, sometimes I don't...I get some time to myself, but I also have to do everything myself...bedtime, make lunches, clean up, etc. Hence the late bedtime.
  • All the kids have colds. But no fevers, even though that's going around. Jane's immunity has gone WAY up this year, compared with last year. Thank you Lord!
  • I am starting to train for a 10K and at least one triathlon coming up this summer. I love getting back into the swing of things!
  • Lucy was walking around with a cloth headband over her eyes, pretending it was a blindfold. She also made a container, out of paper, to put little slips of paper with math problems in them. She and Jane are obsessed with calculators these days, and I make them write the math problems on paper first, then check on the calculator. Hence, her creative mind went to work to make it more fun.
  • Jane wrote a sweet Valentine's card to one of her teachers tonight. I love finding things like that just lying around, that I didn't even know had been made till after the fact. She is in the "sounding out words and writing them using any old spelling" stage...and also "writing the letters for the words any old place on the paper" stage. Hence, her card has words that are vertical and horizontal, and the later words start up again at the upper half of the card. "Happy Valentine's Day Miss Lisa I love you My love for you is _____ (can't read the last word) From Jane" is what I finally deciphered.
  • I haven't yet figured out how to download pictures from my iphone. I know it's supposed to actually download for me, using icloud...maybe I just haven't set it up right. Soon, soon!
  • Brendan and I went to dinner the Parthenon restaurant in Ann Arbor over the weekend. It's a Cousino favorite restaurant, and it's closing soon, so we had to get there while we could. We generally go a couple times a year for flaming cheese and good gyros sandwiches. I'm going to miss it!
  • Ok, that's a good enough update, right?

Good night!

Thursday, December 22, 2011

2011...a Family Review

Brendan...has been busy this year working (still) as a city engineer in Birmingham, leaving early in the morning but coming home for dinner consistently (he doesn't have to stay late at this job, thank goodness!). He said he won a "major award" for some project or other, but it never made it home to our front window. Brendan also:
  • ran a marathon in October because his father-in-law asked him if he wanted to (and who can say no to a father-in-law)...I don't think he really wanted to at first...
  • And now he is crazy...he runs 10-15 miles on the weekend "just for fun" ... even though he's NOT training for another marathon. He's just crazy:)
  • instigated an ongoing game of "Nerf Gun Fighting" between him and the kids...started last Christmas when he got the gun in a white elephant exchange. The excitement (for everyone) has not really worn off yet...
  • enjoys doing art projects with the girls, and instigated a "Sunday art" time on Sunday afternoons
  • learned to change car oil, and has been taking care of our cars
  • did a few triathlons this past summer (before the marathon)... teaching at Daycroft Montessori school, and keeping the house (mostly) running smoothly. She loves teaching, and she loves being home. She loves that being a teacher means lots of vacation time! She also:
  • just got an iPhone!!! And has quickly realized how dependent she will soon become on it
  • Misses cooking real meals, but is getting faster and more efficient in the kitchen.
  • Is not a running-fool like her husband, but likes to run a few miles here and there...Will probably never run a marathon, but will run a (shorter) race or two every summer:)
  • Realizes that she leads a full but rather "unexciting" life. She looks forward to doing exciting things at some point in the future, when the kids are older and life is less hectic. That day will come, right??
Geno....has had a nice year in 3rd grade so far. He is learning alot, and has made some good friends at school. Everyone likes Gene- he is friendly, fun to play with, and good at both sports and schoolwork. He treats his classmates well, and plays with everyone. He also:
  • Has learned to run (it's been a family thing lately!) and thinks running a mile is nothing. He "accidentally" ran a whole 5k without stopping, when he was really going to run just 1. 5 miles and then walk a while
  • loves to play Wii sports, and chess on the computer
  • likes to sing, and was in the school choir this year, following in the footsteps of Grandpa Hendricks.
  • plays basketball in the driveway against the garage door 9but just got a Nerf Hoop for inside, and has been playing with it constantly!
  • never wants to wear a jacket
  • is plowing through the Suzuki piano book...tried for the first time to play Go Tell Aunt Rhody "hands together" three days ago, and now can play the whole thing, quickly and with no mistakes.
  • is very kind to Jane and Lucy, when he wants to be:) Otherwise he can be a tease...
  • loves to play games, and not by himself anymore. He gets the girls to play with him...and they can! in her 1st grade year at Daycroft. She is a "social butterfly" I suppose, and has lots of friends. She tends to choose one friend to be her "best friend" of the month, and it switches periodically. I don't know if her friends know who is Lucy's bff at which moment...she is still pretty friendly to everyone. Lucy is doing really well in school academically- her teachers just comment on how slow she can be at times. She is a thinker and project-planner, and has trouble focusing on what someone else wants her to be doing. But she does really nice work when she tries. And we're working on speed at home:) Lucy also:
  • thinks "a pillow pet is actually more useful than a stuffed animal"...trying to convince us she needs one
  • likes to sing, is not old enough to be in choir yet, but is in a (annoying to certain siblings) stage of wanting to sing out loud (but to herself really) in the car, in the bathroom...basically anywhere she is
  • loves to collect bugs, but really wants a pet hamster
  • has started to hide in random places around the house, wait till someone comes by, and then yell, "Ambush!!!" and jump out, preferably with the nerf gun mentioned above.
  • is fascinated by things like a taken-apart dustbuster
  • got a little button that said, "Smarty Pants". Gene said that's because she was the smartest...she replied, "Yeah, cause sometimes I act like the mom of the house."
  • makes us laugh every day with her witticisms! in her second year of preschool at Daycroft, as one of the older kids this year. She has become very social as well. Last year she played mostly by herself, and didn't participate during group times. This year she is friends with lots of children, talks often during group times, and is learning to share her best friend with other children in her class. She is our only child who has gone to a real preschool, and I think this age is tricky for figuring out friendships. She spends almost 8 hours every day with these children (much longer than I'd prefer in an ideal world), whereas Gene and Lucy at her age played with a friend for maybe 2-3 hours once a week. So, she's doing fine all things considered:) She's at the top of her class academically, and is enjoying herself very much. Her biggest accomplishment thus far is learning to write numbers and letters... She also:
  • does not like to hear a toilet flush, and will cover her ears every time
  • can make toast and peanut butter sandwiches, and loves to
  • used to cry if she saw a bug, then changed her tune once Lucy started collecting them. Now she loves bugs!
  • finally is learning to put her face in the water...may be a fish next summer...
  • loves to be fancy. Loves her (now broken) pink gel sandals that really have no business being worn in the winter. Loves them so much that she cut off the broken strap, cut the other one to match, and wore them all day yesterday, inside and out.
Well, there are many more things that could be mentioned...but if you're curious, just scroll down and read some past posts. At least they'll give you a glimpse of what we were up to! Many more pictures will be posted in the coming year, now that Hannah has above-mentioned I-phone, that can take good pictures and is easily portable...

Merry Christmas everyone reading this! May God grant you boatloads of love, joy and peace in the coming year... We love and appreciate all of our family members and friends, and look forward to sharing our lives with you in 2012!

~The Cousinos

Monday, December 19, 2011

5 minutes or less...

To cover the last 2 months...hmm. Here are a few thoughts of what I remember from that time, in no particular order:

-nobody has been sick (until this morning...Jane is sniffling)

-the girls have stuck together like glue, creating art and building blocks again.

-Gene is up to Go Tell Aunt Rhody in Suzuki book 1. He is basically going on his own, with a little help, until piano lessons resume again probably in the summer. He has thrown in a few Christmas carols from a book he found in the piano bench.

-the girls can (and did) wrap their own Christmas presents for their teachers. I am pretty much not needed...and the presents actually look pretty good:)

-Gene ran a 5K on Thanksgiving, without stopping(!) and Lucy ran a mile. Jane was going to run a mile, until she got assigned to be with her grandma, and conned her into giving a piggy back for much of the race!

-everyone has secret things they're making at school

-we rang the bells for the red Salvation Army bucket, and sang Christmas carols for an hour with my sisters and dad.

A few quotes and stories:

-Gene and his friend Mitch call each other "Dude" a lot now when they're together. Lucy had been overhearing, and one morning she commented to Jane while they were coloring pictures: "They call each other Dude. Maybe we should call each other...Dudette."

-Jane, playing chess with Gene, "Now my kings are SUPER mad at your kings!"

-Gene didn't see the gallon of milk that was on the table with the cereal boxes when he came down for breakfast one morning. When I came down, there were two (almost full) gallons on the table. His only comment, "I just didn't see it!" (Grandma he following in his Grandpa's footsteps in this way as well?")

-Jane was moving things around in the box we had given her to keep her special things in. She explained, "I am organizing Treasure Land."

-Lucy and Jane were playing/exercising with the small weights we have in our family room...5 lbs each. Lucy put them on the couch for a moment, and for some reason lay down on the floor right next to the couch. I heard a thud and a cry, and when I ran over she was sobbing on the floor with a huge welt on her forehead. Needless to say, there is a new house rule of where not to put the weights, and the girls are getting 1 and 2 lb weights for Christmas!

Over and out.

Monday, November 14, 2011


All three kids celebrated their birthdays in the last couple is an update, mostly in pictures:

Her favorite thing at the time was zebras...because they were "fancy".

A "scooter/bike" pedals, lightweight...awesome!

Kids came over for a birthday party...

They colored a big sign to hang on the wall...

They made fruit-loop necklaces...

They dressed up and paraded around the house...

First time:

Second time:

Grand finale:

Maybe she was a little partied out after that...

Then Geno's turn in October...

A new jacket (that he was just thrilled to try on)...

Football party with a few friends at a local park...

If I had known this was the only "cake" picture I would take, I would have taken a better one!

Then, Lucy's turn (finally!)

She got a much-longed-for umbrella. To share with Jane, of course. But maybe we should have gotten Jane her own...

It was a beautiful fall day, made much better by wearing a party hat...

She had a kid-party too, and they also decorated a wall-poster.

Then they made their own pizzas...

Then they decorated and ate their own cupcakes...

Then, they decorated and made and created to their heart's delight!

Happy Birthday to my three very wonderful kids!