Sunday, May 12, 2019

Seattle's Snow Event

We started February with an epic birthday party for our twin friends, Carson and Brenna, who were turning six.  Face painting was very popular.  Rainbows are Sammy's number one thing.  
 Since we call B abeja (Spanish for bumblebee), and he occasionally signs his name "Bee," he has an affinity for bugs. 
 Eloise likes all marine animals, but I think she is particularly drawn to sharks since she doesn't have many teeth of her own left. 
 You know how we weren't sure we were going to get any weather this year since it had been extra sunny during our whole rainy season?  Well, on February 3 it started to snow.  We rushed out to take a picture with some snowflakes since it was bound to end soon. 
 It didn't end.  That night we had a snow throwing party with our church friends who came over for dinner. 
 The next day school was cancelled, so it was a snow party all day long.  Fortunately, everyone had snow gear that fit because of an upcoming snow trip we had planned, so we were all set for what turned into a major snow event. 
 Jared is really a very patient brother.  B wanted to see what he was doing, so he climbed into the unused portion of the chair. 
 No school again on Tuesday. 
 We mixed up our snow play (the kids spent HOURS on end outside every snow day) with a little bit of painting and art in the house. 
 Sammy discovered board games.  He can play approximately three games without any assistance (chutes and ladders, a candy land variation we have with My Little Ponies, and the Hatchimals game), and he begs to play them every single day.  He has caught on to Todd and Jared's fascination with games, although they tend to choose more complex strategy games.  Jared and B will play with him sometimes.  Snow days make them more agreeable to playing "baby" games.
 School started late on Wednesday.  Sammy and I saw the kids onto the bus and then headed to the temple.  Only later did we learn that the bus had broken down several blocks from the school, and the kids had waited on the bus for an hour for a mechanic to come and fix the bus.  Since Jared takes the bus to the younger kids' school and then continues on to his school, he didn't get to school until his class was already at lunch! The transportation department forgot to notify Jared's school about his late arrival, since they had put the other kids that ride from Sandburg to Thoreau on a different, functional bus, so Jared's school called me while I was in the temple and left me a message saying that Jared was not in class. 
Thursday was back to an ordinary schedule.  It was still cold and snowy outside, so Sammy and I had to keep playing games. 
 Friday also started as a normal day, but school was released two hours early because of forecasted snowfall in the afternoon.  I spent all day scoffing about the over reaction of the school district, but, sure enough, snow started trickling down around 3:30, and, by the time the buses would have been driving kids home, snow was accumulating rapidly.  More snow fun for the kiddos!
 Jared left me this cute, tiny snowman on the porch. 
 Because our time is compressed during school weeks, with school in session until 4, and then after school activities Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday, we made our Valentines on Saturday.  The kids each picked out a printable Valentine online, which I printed at the library,  They then mounted them on cardstock and attached goodies.  Eloise picked a color by number that said, "You color my heart," and taped crayons to the back. 
 Jared, king of puns, had a Valentine that said, "Yoda best, Valentine!" He punched holes in Yoda's hand and stuck a glow stick bracelet in as a light saber.  B got dollar store dinosaurs and tied them to his "I think you're dino-mite!" Valentines, which I though was pretty kindergarten perfect. 
 Todd and I had been scheduled to go to a hockey game in Kent on Saturday, but we were snowed in.  Our street was impassable, and the weather was volatile.  On Sunday, Todd helped the kids build a snow fort. 
 Monday was another snow day with no school, so I helped the kids build a second fort, and we had an epic snow battle.  Todd had been working from home so he wouldn't get stranded at work.  Monday his bus wasn't even attempting to run, so he had no choice but to work from home, with the occasional snowball fight break. 
 The schools issued reading challenges to get the kids to use their snow days constructively.  A lot of the time we weren't playing in the snow was spent curled up in blankets with books, but I don't think the school challenges made any difference in how much reading the kids did.  Eloise did write a story about our snowball fight to turn in.  The kids could turn in reading minutes or written stories for raffle tickets for a pizza party with the principal. 
 Our favorite mountain biking hill in the woods turned out to be a neighborhood favorite sledding hill, too. 
 I was very prepared for more snow days.  The weather report was astonishingly accurate for the duration of our snow event, so I stocked up on crafts.  The kids helped Sammy paint a small wooden alphabet so that he could practice letter recognition.  Jared used to shun this sort of thing, but he informs me that public school art is "bomb" (like now kids are in too much of a hurry to use articles, so days of "the bomb" are over), so he is willing to participate in this kind of thing, after a great show of reluctance. 
 Siblings are more effective teachers than parents are. 
 On Tuesday, school was cancelled again.  Jared's teacher sent a picture of a funny little snowman she had built to the class and challenged them to build a better one.  The little hooligans decided to clear off the car instead. 
 Wednesday was Valentine's day, but school was still not back in session.  We had to make do with a wrestling/pillow fight/couch destroying party with Emily and Katie while their mom ran some errands. 
We were already scheduled to have Thursday and Friday off of school.  Those were the days when we had planned since December to go to the mountains and have our mini winter vacation and see snow.  We were faced with the possibility of being snowed in and missing our snow vacation! 

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