Thursday, June 26, 2014


I think Caroline will be a pro at breaking up when she's older because one of her more common phrases is "this isn't working out." After swim lessons the beach towel would always drag on the ground and fall off her shoulder, so she'd get huffy, fall behind, and call to me, "This isn't working out!" Blankets not perfectly layered at bedtime? Sippy cup lid not screwing on correctly? Swimsuit impossible to pull up because it's wet? "This isn't working out"

Hopefully: boy who doesn't know how to treat her right? "This isn't working out."

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Da Bears

Who needs to write about giant moths on screen doors when you can write about bears breaking into campsites?!

Joe and Jonathan took Patrick, Eli, and Amelia camping last night - Amelia's FIRST EVER camping trip! (Patrick and Eli have both been as babies and/or toddlers). They went up to some property that Jonathan's family owns in San Isabel - it has cabins nearby so it's not exactly the wilderness, but it's not like they were camping in a suburban backyard. They fished, cooked hot dogs over the fire, and eventually got the kids to bed around 10 p.m. only to be woken up by an unusual noise around 2 a.m.  Both Joe and Jonathan woke up, grabbed flashlights, and were unhappily surprised to find the noise was a large black bear who broke out our car window to get a bag of chips! The window was cracked and it stuck its paws in, then pulled backwards and shattered the window onto the ground. The bear grabbed the chips and lumbered away and sat on one of the nearby cabin's back patio, enjoying his snack, while Joe and Jonathan waited to see what it would do. Well, after waiting and waiting it never left! If they came closer it got huffy and started "whoomph"ing at them and bounced on its paws off the ground... that sounds more like a bear that's used to humans and used to getting its way, not one that will amble away in peace! Since the car could no longer be secured (and by then Eli and Patrick had woken up, so Amelia was the only one of the entire crew sleeping) they decided to head home. It was 4 a.m. Once home, everyone clambered into bed reeking of campfire smoke and a bit delirious at the unusual hour, and then had a nice lie-in this morning to compensate.

The scene of the crime

 Besides muddy prints there's a bit of bear fur stuck the the door!

 All shattered on the inside

We now have a broken window (to be replaced tomorrow) and a story that will live on forever - the camping trip where a bear broke in!

I'd say Joe is racking up some serious life lessons this summer!
1) Don't put containers of liquid next to open laptops (or any technology, really)
2) Call before you dig (he hit the gas line during while digging out the drainage pipes, there were about 11 emergency vehicles at our house!)
3) Roll up all car windows when camping

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Our littlest big digger

I'll say it again: Ethan is the cutest dude ever.

After ripping up the front yard to install a drainage system (our basement flooded each spring during heavy rain storms), Joe did an excellent job of putting it back together even BETTER than it started, with a nicely mulched planting bed. Ethan helped.

Monday, June 23, 2014

Mof mom

I was telling Joe about the giant moths and he guessed the bigger one was actually the female, since that's more common in the animal/insect kingdom. It seems he guessed right because the giant one climbed on our patio screen door and laid a clutch of eggs! I'm no expert, but the screen door that get slammed 100 times a day and sprayed with water bottles and bubbles may not be the best location for eggs... I'll see if I can move them to a safer location tomorrow.

Wait, don't I hate moths?! Yes, yes I do - the small ones. There are MILLIONS of them in the spring! And they ALL want to dive-bomb my head! These giant moths seem different, more ancient, more special  - certainly in part because this is only the 4th I've ever seen in my LIFE; just last night I killed 4 small moths. So we shall see about that egg removal in the morning.


Moth season is DISGUSTING, in my opinion - having moths dive-bomb my head is one of my all-time least-favorite things! But having moths around happens to be one of Ethan's FAVORITE things! He especially loves when they're dead and he can pick them up and proudly carry them around. When he sees one, dead or alive, he shouts "MOF!" and it's so entertaining Joe and I have taken to yelling "MOF!" as well if we happen to see one (even if Ethan isn't around. Such is the nature of parenthood).

Today we saw some serious MOFs on our back patio - I was washing spilled bubbles off the concrete and unknowingly disturbed two amorous moths locked together. Drenched, they crawled out of hiding and once they finally knocked off knocking boots I picked up the larger and less colorful (male, I'm guessing?) moth to get him out of harm's (kids') way while he dried. Ethan was FAR to excited about MOF! MOF! for me to leave him down on the ground (the female found a nice hiding spot nearby), but I had to get a picture :)

Saturday, June 21, 2014

The point of art is WINNING

Remember those art contests that Patrick instigates and then declares himself the winner? These are what I was talking about....

Bananasaurus. I think they're from Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs 2. Eli's (the lower drawing in each photo) has very long arms and claws!

Lions. Surprisingly similar! Eli just couldn't be bothered to color his in.

Jaguars. Patrick's is more action-packed, but I just DIE at Eli's! Makes me laugh every time I see it - he just captures the essence of the sleek, stealthy jaguar! Hahahaha!

 Tigers. This ALSO makes me die - first, I am so impressed at how intently he colored in the tiger (and jaguar above); second, it only has 2 legs; third, what it going on with the incredibly pointed head? It's a bit of a ridiculous shape. BUT... I am still so impressed! Eli seriously didn't start drawing ANYTHING until about a month ago, he was very content to scribble or do nothing at all. I'd say this is a HUGE improvement over scribbling!

Patrick likes me to color with him if there's time, so I like to show him that he isn't perfect yet. BOOM! I win this round.
Because art is all about winning self-created contests with those whose talents are not as developed.

Saturday, June 14, 2014


Our macbook made a full recovery from the water fountain (the hp has not been resurrected), so I've been planning for a while to get back to blogging, but you know what they say about the best laid plans... Hell, here I come....

Some of my intended posts included stuff that I've been working on around the house, crafty-type projects. Here they are:
New wall arrangement in the boys room, I painted the signs from cute saying I'd seen on pinterest. The say "Rawr means 'I love you' in dinosaur," and "I love you so much I could squish you."
Here's the arrangement full of the boys' art. They simply create TOO MUCH ART to keep up at one time! Eli has even become prolific, Patrick likes to declare drawing contests where they draw the same thing and then Patrick declares himself the winner (which is EXACTLY what I did when I was a kid! We're both art bullies!) but I just think Eli's drawings are to die for!

"New" curtains in the boys room. Joe bought them, they are plain tan blackout curtains, so I saw on pinterest (SHOCKING I should find a project on there) an idea to jazz up canvases by painting circles with a toilet paper tube... I took it to a new level by painting on giant curtains with a coffee can. I think it turned out great! I used black acrylic paint and got some on my (non-painting) pajamas. Very typical Kirsta move.

I put 3 tiers of purple ruffles on Caroline's curtains! They were surprisingly easy and I thought they turned out adorable. I also lined the curtains in an attempt to make them more light-proof, and they ARE, but they're nothing like blackout curtains. Which is fine because she's afraid of the dark; you can see a few Christmas lights peeking out from behind the curtains - she sleeps with them on every night. Not one nightlight for THIS girl, she needs a strange of 100 night lights, right above her bed. 

In my room, much less adorable but even more functionals, I made a sock sorter. It's a plain canvas painted blue, string with string and a few clothespins. It says "In search of a sole mate." This gem has helped me find countless lost mates, all while matching my bedroom's color scheme. Hooray!

In larger-scale project world, I still need to do a final update on the downstairs bathroom (the Bold and the Beautiful: The stunning conclusion!) AAAAAAAND the upstairs bathroom! We got buck wild 2 nights ago and it looks GRRRRRREAT! But I'll save those for another post.

I've been meaning to blog about the kids, what they're up to.
Patrick: finished kindergarten! He loved it, made some good friends, really made great strides in reading (though he still prefers me to read to him instead), and is SO EXCITED to be in 1st grade next year. He is in level 4 at swim lessons, learning crawl stroke. He does well during lessons but when we swim afterwards he prefers to bob from place to place, and generally looks like he's drowning, just to avoid the hassle of swimming.
 Eating ice cream cones on the swing in our backyard

Eli: What a BEAST. He misses the cutoff for kindergarten this year so we are trying to get him into preschool at Sunset Park, where Patrick goes, but we have yet to find out if they had any open spots (fingers crossed!). He's only about 2 inches shorter than Patrick and has 13 pounds on him (Eli weighs 60.5 pounds! He's a BEAST!) so by the time he finally makes it to kindergarten the size difference between him and average kids will be ridiculous. He is working on pre-reading and knows the letters of the alphabet and the sounds that they make (for the most part), but we are doing some remedial speech work at home because V sounds like F and L sounds like W and R sounds like W... we'd like to clear that up a bit before he gets much older. Eli is in level 3 in swim lessons and has learned to do a spectacular back float this week. He continues to be the loudest child I have ever met.

Caroline: Growing so big! She has her cool room all to herself, but she thinks it stinks to be alone at night and she always requests (and sometimes gets) a friend in her room. She has had sleepovers with Khloe (Kari's dog) and her cousin Addilyn, and we are planning a sleepover with Amelia next week. Caroline just started level 1 in swimming and loves being in the water and blowing bubbles and doing kicks. She prefers to wear swimsuits or dresses, she will only wear shorts if we are going to the gym for me to work out and I am wearing workout shorts. Our neighbors undoubtedly think we're nuts, all our kids run around in swimsuits/trunks riding bikes and yelling to each other to race, and that the other person is cheating, while I call our "be kind!" and "show love!" I do show love to Caroline, she's the only one who gets a real bedtime routine - songs, prayers, tucking in, the whole 9 yards. The boys get a kiss, then yelled at if they come out of their rooms.

Ethan: the handsomest. I think all our boys were good-looking kids, but Ethan is the cutest in my book. His hair continues to be crazy, he copies new words every day, he became attached to his baby blanket (finally! a kids attached to the blanket they received at birth!) and likes to hold the tag for comfort, he final weaned off bottles (the new blanket attachment helped), and he is currently obsessed with cars and trucks. Truck toys (he sleeps with at least 2 each night), truck books (he has about 5 favorites and will throw them at you if you're sitting down), truck accessories (he loves Eli's zippy cups with trucks on it). 20 months was about the same age as Patrick was when we would take him to Joe's job sites just to watch concrete pours, and I know Ethan would have loved it if we could still do that. Sanity saved, though, Joe is home a ton rather than at a construction site, so I'll take the switch.
Ethan conked out while the big kids watched a show before nap time. He's clutching has favorite white big rig in his hand. He is simply too precious!