Tuesday, October 21, 2014

The boys had a few days of school off so we decided to take a family adventure. I found a cabin on Rock Creek just outside of Red Lodge on vrbo.com. 

Our lovely accomodations. It had 2 bedrooms, a loft, kitchen/dining/living room and a cool bathroom with a vintage mint-green tub/sink/toilet. Here's a link if you're interested. :) Sawyer hopped in the hot tub within 10 seconds of our arrival.
We spent the afternoon at a campground right on Rock Creek. The boys fished, threw rocks in the river, and went squirrel hunting with their bows.
Sawyer hiding in the bear-proof food receptacle.

Smith Squirrel-Hunter Schuyler

Mason Sure-Shot Schuyler.

Gunner Trout-Slayer Schuyler

This one was cracking us up with his rock reclining. He'd sprawl out on several boulders and say, "Ah, this is the life." Or "Dad, you have got to try this. It's like a massage."

Sawts in the hot tub again. 

We only stayed one night but there was adventure enough for everyone. The boys built a dam down by the creek and they found a teepee made of branches and leaves. We ventured into Red Lodge for pizza at Bogart's and the next morning visited the rock shop (boys are really into rocks/minerals/gems right now) and the Candy Emporium, of course.
We would have liked to visit the wildlife sanctuary but Gunner developed a fever and a cough and so we headed home a bit earlier than anticipated.

And here we are today, on our 3rd nebulizer treatment of the day. Boo. Asthma is another kind of adventure...one less pleasant than the others. 

Anyhoo, another adventure on the books for this crazy Schuyler family.

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Well, I thought about quitting the blog...for like...seven months. But I just can't quit...for lots of reasons. So, here we are again! I'm not even gonna try to cover the last seven months but I might throw in a recap here and there.

Right now...

...we are still adjusting to our school routine. As much as I like to think that my boys have trouble with change, I am seeing that I struggle just as much (if not more, ahem).

...we are waking up at 6:30a to dress, eat, pack lunches and snacks, find library books, sign permission slips and get out to the end of the driveway by 7:32a to get on the bus. 

...Mason is enjoying 2nd grade with Mrs. Breault (pronounced "Bro").
...Smith is rocking 2nd grade with Miss Perry.
...Sawyer loves kindergarten with Mrs. Moellenkamp.

...Gunner asks me several times a day, "Where's Smith?", "Where's Fiddy?", "Where's Sawyer?".

...Gunner calls Mason "Fiddy"...which sounds like Smitty. 

...Matt is blessedly busy building homes...when he's not bow-hunting.

...I am wondering why my 2nd graders have so much flipping homework. I just want them to be able to play when they get home! 

...Sawyer is taking group piano lessons on Monday afternoons. And, he likes to practice his piano...may it ever be so!

...we are finding big, black crickets in our house. Blech. Mason picks them up by the legs, bare-handed, and flushes them down the toilet for me. These boys is handy.

...bed-time comes far too quickly when there is dinner to eat, homework to complete, baths to be taken, books to be read, piano to be played, and 4 silly boys to be enjoyed.

...Matt and I are rocking our 10th (!) year of marriage. Cah - razy. 

...this verse

I said to myself, “Relax and rest.
    God has showered you with blessings.
    Soul, you’ve been rescued from death;
    Eye, you’ve been rescued from tears;
    And you, Foot, were kept from stumbling.”
 I’m striding in the presence of God,
    alive in the land of the living!
Psalm 116:7-9 (msg)

reminds me that right now, in this very moment, I have everything. 


Flashback to the annual Schuyler men's camping trip on the Boulder. I wasn't there, obviously, so enjoy pics without commentary! :)

Thursday, February 6, 2014

Right now

Right now we are...

 Getting to know and love Miss Wren... 

 Thankful for the arrival of our couches and the warmth of our wood-stove...

 Loving how well our new home suits us...
(Dining room)
(G's room)
(Another view of G's room...more pics to come!)
Enjoying a bit more peace now that we have a bit more living space...

 Shootin' hoops on Saturdays...

(M & S are playing, Matt is coaching)
Learning and practicing how to read...

Preparing for a (surprise) family trip to Disneyland and Lego-land!

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Bullet Points

A recap of the last three months...

 The older boys played together without coercion...and all had fun. At least this one time.
 Gunner George climbed atop all surfaces and due to him being a) irresistably cute and b) the baby of the family was not reprimanded or disciplined, but photographed, for doing so. Ahem.

 Mason and Smith dressed up as Ninjas for Halloween and their wonderful school held a Halloween Parade around the neighborhood. (That's Sawdog under the green umbrella.)

This cuteness happened.
 I enjoyed a girl's weekend in Salt Lake City with these lovely ladies.

Thanksgiving in Billings with the Myers, Nuttings, Bedfords, Perrines, Schuylers, Bones, and Freeses. I stole Lane's pic because I didn't take a single picture.

 Mason (and Smith) lost both front teeth in time for Christmas. "All I want for Christmas is my two front teeth..."
 Ma and Pa Myers came up to help move us into our new house. Before leaving, they took the monkeys to get a tree, set it up in the living room, and helped decorate it. It blessed all of us tremendously!

Sawyer made his debut as a shepherd in the Nativity skit at church. 

 He killed it...obviously.

 All 4 boys played together peaceably...for 5 minutes, but whatever. It happened.

Imagine four monkeys hopping about, tearing open gifts, exclaiming excitedly, smiling and laughing and occasionally bickering, while two parents sip coffee and watch the scene unfold. That is our Christmas picture...in your imagination...because I didn't take any real photos. Shameful, I know.

 Ma and Pa Schuyler came up for a visit and to celebrate 2nd Christmas. I managed one photo of that.

We invited our friends over for a post-Christmas Thank-You-note-writing-extravaganza.

Okay, I'm all caught up now. Did I forget a few hundred things? Yes, but I know you'll forgive me. Hope to see you again soon...ish. :)

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Okay...the three 6 year-olds are at school, the 4 year-olds are playing Legos, and Gunner is napping. So, I have a minute to share our week with y'all. Our dear friends, Pete and Naomi Moore, are in Ethiopia bringing home their adopted 18-month-old daughter. We are caring for their two sons, Kale, 6, and Joel, 4, until they return tomorrow. That means there are 6 boys age 6 and under in our 1600 square foot home. {Pause for effect}

Things are going as well as possible. I am so thankful for...
  • public school (can I get an "Amen"?)
  • warm, sunny, perfect-for-playing-outside days
  • bedtime
  • paper plates
  • coffee and wine  
  • the Holy Spirit
Now, I'm no Michelle Duggar or Kate Gosselin,  but if you're wondering how we're doing it, here are some specifics:

Food -- Breakfast is a flurry of cold cereal, instant oatmeal, and toaster waffles. We pack lunches at night and rely heavily on convenience food...granola bars, string-cheese, apple-sauce pouches and the like.  The lovely women in Naomi's adoption group deliver a delicious dinner every evening. What a mercy! Each monkey has a drink cup with his name on it to use throughout the day.

Transportation -- The older boys ride their bikes to the bus stop and then to and from school on the bus, most days. My {beloved} suburban seats all 6 children when I have to pick them up from school. I have not, and will not, attempt to go anywhere public with all of them until we brave the airport to pick up Pete and Naomi on Thursday.

Sleep -- Mason and Smith share the top bunk - head to toe. Kale and Joel share the bottom bunk - head to toe. Sawyer squeezes himself into a toddler bed perpendicular to the bunk bed. I have a fan running for white noise and to circulate the stinky-dirty-boy-smell in the air. I also have a diffuser with doTerra Breathe oil running all night long, so the sniffles/coughs don't take us all down. The rest of us sleep comfortably in our own beds/rooms. Bed time is 7:30p...which means we start getting ready for bed at 7p and they are all in bed and (mostly) quiet by 8p. Wake-up time has been 6:15a...{gasp} but I've managed to keep them (mostly) quiet and in their room until 6:45a.

Schedule -- I have found that the more I attempt to do or accomplish, the less I enjoy my children. When I try to add extraneous activities/responsibilities to my schedule - things in addition to caring for my family and home - I get cranky and overwhelmed and treat my kids like they're obstacles rather than people. With two more boys in the mix, I have maintained a simple schedule. Groceries and errands were accomplished before the week started, kid-free. Sawyer kept his preschool schedule, and we made it to Bible Study today. I had a brief meeting to select laminate and hardware for the new house and the boys opted to stay in the suburban and watch a movie. When Mason, Smith and Kale get home from school, everyone has a snack and then they play outside until dinner.

As anticipated, mornings - getting everyone up/dressed/fed and out the door, and evenings - getting everyone home/fed/brushed/ and in bed, have been the craziest. It's loud. Sometimes there are tears. There is fighting and hurt feelings. There is a lot of energy. Like, a lot. But, the boys really do love each other and are still amused by the fun of a "sleepover". And, honestly, I know people are praying for us because the Holy Spirit has provided extra patience, extra joy, extra smiles, and an abundance of grace. I'd like to think that I'm Superwoman but I'm nothing...nothing...without the good my God provides.

Now, I'm off to make lunch and fold some laundry before school lets out. Only one more night/morning to go!

Monday, October 7, 2013


Sawyer had his first dental appointment today. After G's nap, while the bigs were at school, Me, Sawyer, and Gunner schlepped ourselves to the Dentist's Office. G and I waited in the waiting room while Sawyer bravely and cheerfully followed the hygienist back to the chair. 

Gunner proceeded to take out every single toy, book, magazine, and pamphlet. He also pulled himself up on a chair and sat next to a woman reading a book while she waited to be called back. He tried to grab her phone and book, talking gibberish all the while. He made friends with a young businessman and also grabbed the legs of the young man speaking with the receptionist. In true Gunner style, he never stopped moving, talking, or socializing.

Our dentist, a kind, soft-spoken man, came out to inform me that Sawdog had not one...but 5 cavities. Five! As he graciously laid out the plan to fill the cavities and encouraged me to handle Sawyer's tooth brushing for the next year, Gunner tugged on his pant legs and said, "Up! Up!". I may have giggled.

Despite the bad news, (cavities = $$$) Sawyer was well-behaved and cheery and the hygienist told me that when introduced to the dentist he chirped, "Are you Doc McStuffins?!" More giggling.

Oh, these boys of mine. I love them so, cavities and all. :)

Wednesday, October 2, 2013

Going forward

Oh my. 
I barely remember how to do this! Blog, that is. 
Let me catch you up on the last 2 months...
I taught my bigs how to sew. We're so PC/progressive. Ha.

Sawyer continues to hone his ninja skills.

 With a new house on the horizon, I am mindful of remembering and documenting the home that we're leaving. This wonderfully cozy, charming home where so much life happened. So, I'm featuring bits and pieces of this old house on the blog. Here is Gunner in his room.

So many moments spent in that rocking chair! So many butts wiped on that changing table/dresser! Good times!
In August, Ma and Pa Myers, Addie & her two littles and me and my littles, hit the road for Coeur d'Alene to visit the Perrines. It rained the whole weekend...we amused ourselves with a trip to the inflatable bounce house, an indoor swimming park, and miscellaneous shenanigans. Lots of awesome cousin time. There were 15 of us all under the Perrine's roof and we all still love each other...so it was a good trip. :)
Sawdog turned 4 mid-August. Matt was on a backpacking trip so Addie braved the pizza place with me to celebrate.
The pizza place has old-school arcade games. Five dollars worth of quarters buys this mama a moment of peace with a beer and a {hot} piece of pizza. I pretended not to notice that my toddler was cruising up and down the skee ball lane. I may have even exclaimed, "Who's child is that?" Or "Where is that boy's mother?!"

Four-year-old Power Ranger...with attitude.

We celebrated his birthday again with friends at the park.
This handsome boy is quickly gaining on his older brothers in height and weighs nearly the same. Due to his stature and ninja skills, we're enrolling him in hockey this fall. Should be interesting.

Matt and his guys quickly turned our mound of dirt into this. Everything is right on schedule and we hope to move in around the first of December. {whoop whoop!}
The monkeys love going to the house/jobsite as much as I do. On this particular visit, Sawyer worked up a sweat and thought shirtless with a gold-medal was the way to go. Love that kid.

This happened. 
He fell off his new Razor scooter and face-planted on our gravel driveway.
Matt started a new, totally rad, bedtime routine wherein he gets the boys washed/brushed/jammied, reads a story from "The Jesus Storybook Bible", and puts them to bed whilst I clean up dinner and make lunches for the following day. All I do is swoop in for hugs, kisses, and prayers. I heart this man.
Hmmm, where is Gunner? 
Oh, he's just hammering nails into some plywood in the backyard. Totally normal for an 18-month-old. Not. He's obviously a genius. Did I mention he can chew gum? ...without swallowing it? {The four-year-old can barely do that. Ahem}
My sweetie killed a black bear with his bow. No, there will not be a bear rug in our new house...in case you were wondering. :)

Papa D and Grammie Laurie came up for a visit. Don't mess with Papa D - he's fierce!

My plan with this here blog is to do less "Let me catch you up on the last two months of our lives" and more "Look what we did TODAY".  It feels less overwhelming to compose shorter posts on a more regular basis. Duh. So, going forward, that's what I'm going to do. 

Here's hoping!