Five Cute Kids

Five Cute Kids

Saturday, January 30, 2010

Verbal Snapshot

I'm really good at copying other people's good ideas. I don't come up with a lot of ideas on my own.

I saw this idea on a couple of sister's blogs that I have been reading lately. At the beginning of the year, they write a "Verbal Photograph" on their blog. Since I use this blog as my journal/family history I thought that was a great idea since there are many things we do that I don't take pictures of, but want to remember years from now.
So, here is our Smith Family Verbal Photo for 2010.

Nathan has a great job that he loves. He works at St. Alphonsus as the Director of Operations over Cardiologists. We love that he doesn't do any traveling out of town, he can make it work to come to all the kids school functions and that he works with really great people.
He makes us all protein shakes in the morning. Whatever time Benjamin wakes up in the morning (sometimes 6ish or even earlier), the first thing he says is, "Where's dad? Chocolate milk?" If it's too early and we tell him no. Then every few minutes we'll hear "Now?"
Nathan has a goal this year to read 12 books. So far he is on #3. This is quite an accomplishment since in the past when he would sit down to read a book, he would fall asleep within about three minutes. If he reads to the kids at night, he's asleep before they are.

Our morning routine looks a little like this (before Levi was born). Dad wakes up early and gets ready. Mom and the kids wake up between 7 and 7:30. Mom takes her time showering, getting ready and making her bed. The oldest three kids, on their own, get up, get dressed, sometimes make their beds, come downstairs to make their lunches, practice piano, unload the dishwasher, get backpacks ready, coats and shoes on, all while dad makes them "chocolate milk" (protein shake) for their breakfast. If he has an early meeting, then they fix themselves a whole wheat ego waffle from the freezer. One of the kids makes one for Benj. If he doesn't have an early morning meeting then he takes the kids to school. Otherwise, mom drives the kids to school at 8:30 and comes home with Benj to start our day.

Benjamin is an electronical kid. He loves the Wii, computer, DS Nintendo and iPhones. Somewhere he picked up the saying, "I win! You Die!!" We thought it was SO funny at first. Now, it sounds a little morbid. He loves to race. He loves to win. Mom loves spending her day with Benj because he is SO easy going, very low maintenance and likes to spend the day with her. He's also very independent. If he's thirsty he gets himself a drink of water. If he's hungry he goes to the pantry and gets a snack or gets an apple from the fridge. He doesn't mind being home without the other kids, but is happy when they all come home.

Benjamin and mom pick up Spencer everyday from Kindergarten at 11:30. Spencer wishes he could have a friend over to play EVERY day. Often he does. Spencer also likes to watch PBS. I think after sitting still at school and being so good, that TV is his way of relaxing. After a couple of shows, if he doesn't have a friend over he goes outside to see who will play with him. He loves to play outside. We have a few neighbors that exercise their dogs in the common area right in front of our home. Spencer is friends with all of them - our neighbors and their dogs - so, he hangs out with whoever is outside.

Spencer is THRILLED when Sarah and Andrew come home from school. If the weather is nice, they walk home. Sometimes, we'll go pick them up. When they get home we all sit at the table and do homework. Spencer likes to feel like a big kid and do his homework at the same time. Benjamin helps by using my iPhone and timing all the kids with their mad minutes and readings. When they are finished with their homework, Sarah and Spencer usually go upstairs and play while Andrew and Benj play on the computer. If the weather is warm, they all go outside to play with the neighbors. The kids have also been really "into" crafting. They have been creating with Fun Fusion (they are the little beads that you make shapes and animals and then you iron the beads so they fuse together and then mom picks them up all over the house not really knowing what to do with them), Bendaroos (same thing...what do we do with all these wonderful creations?), book marks (Spencer is a whiz at laminating!), plastic canvas and lots of other things. So fun!!!

Nathan gets home between 5:30 and 6 every night. Mom tries to have dinner ready when he walks in. This way we can eat, clean up the kitchen and still have time to do something before bedtime.
We do Family Home Evening on Monday. On Tuesday we watch The Biggest Loser. On Wednesday we don't have anything so we often play games. On Thursday Nathan and Andrew have cub scouts and every other week Sarah has Activity Day. On Friday we usually do Movie Night and our dad gets a movie from Redbox on the way home from work. On Saturday we do chores and then something fun.
On Sunday we have church. We don't go until 1:30pm. I actually like it. We don't do anything "electronical" on Sunday. By the time we go to church our house looks like a tornado has gone through it. This is good...right? It means our kids are being creative and having fun together.

On Saturday morning we do chores before anything else. Andrew is usually the first one done. That's because as soon as he wakes up, he starts doing his chores. He straightens up the mudroom, cleans the downstairs bathroom, makes his bed and straightens up his side of the room and cleans up and organizes all the outside toys. Andrew never complains about doing chores. He is usually the one to empty the dishwasher in the morning WITHOUT being asked.

Sarah's chores are making her bed and straightening up her room, vacuuming and dusting the front room and cleaning the upstairs bathroom. She doesn't like to vacuum. She thinks we are torturing her with that chore. We think maybe she should do more so she'll learn to like it. Sarah gets her chores done only because she can't watch Saturday morning TV until they are finished.

Spencer's chores are making his bed and straightening his room, emptying garbages, helping Benj do door knobs and light switches and unloading the dishwasher. Spencer doesn't like to empty garbages. He thinks it is torture. Nathan tries to make it fun and help him. He still thinks it's torture.

Benjamin's chores are cleaning all the door knobs and light switches with Clorox wipes. Spencer makes sure he does this. He also helps Spencer unload the dishwasher. Spencer helps him make his bed and tells him to pick up toys that are around his bed. Sometimes, he puts the toys away.

Mom and Dad's chores are either dusting (that's dad's job), vacuuming other rooms, starting laundry, cleaning up the kitchen or helping some child with their chores. Mom loves having most of the house clean for at least 15 minutes a week!!!!!

Every Monday night we do Family Home Evening. We all love this night. We don't answer the phone. We don't plan other things that night.
We have a FHE board that tells us all what our assignments are for that week. The kids favorite assignments are activity and treat, but they are happy to do all the others. Everyone takes a turn to do opening prayer, song, scripture, lesson, activity and treat. Mom loves when the kids do the lesson because she loves to hear what they have learned in Primary (they usually tell a story from their lesson on Sunday) and their testimony.

Most important....Life is GOOD!!!

This is probably my longest post ever. It was fun to think about the everyday things that we are doing and what it's really like on a daily/weekly basis. Thanks for letting me share!

2 comments:

The Woods in Idaho said...

What a good idea! I may steal this idea as well. After reading this post I think I need to give my kids more chores ;) and have them make their own school lunches. I can say, "If the Smith kids can do it, so can you." I enjoyed getting a glimpse into your life.

susan said...

You are amazing! My poor kids are on the worst schedule- well I mean no schedule!

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