May 6th, 2019: Bike rides, The Dollar Drop & pterodactyl eggs.
Congratulations to our little Annie this weekend on receiving her First Communion! We are really proud of her! It was also wonderful to see her up there reading the second reading at mass!
In addition to Annie receiving her First Communion – it was also one of the first masses that Gracie & Dominick served as altar servers. So while Annie was reading – we had 3 little Williamsons on the altar at one time!
So as you can imaging – a lot of our weekend centered around preparing for this joyous event on Sunday.
On Thursday evening I went on a short bike ride with Gracie & Dominick around the neighborhood. First time ever doing this! Annie is not quite ready to be on the roads yet – as she is just on the cusp of having me take the training wheels off her bike. Dominick & Gracie have had them off for a while and are both pretty proficient riders. So Gracie, Dominick & I all went around the neighborhood a couple of times. Before this – we had only let them go up and down the street while we stand out there in the street to supervise them. It was a lot of fun! I am looking forward to future rides with them – hopefully some on trails through the woods!
It was also a good experience for them to see what needs to be done when they are riding a bike on the road. At one stop sign Dominick asked me why I was stopping. I explained that when riding on the road – you need to observe the rules just like cars do. I’m trying to lead by example and make a strong impression – one that hopefully sticks!
On Friday we didn’t really do much in the evening. We spent some time catching up on money issues (they all had to reimburse us for souvenirs from when we were on the Cincinnati trip and the book count). We have an elaborate system where the kids are incentivized for engaging in behaviors we want to encourage – but they are also expected to contribute to the cost of family activities like vacation – and pay for their own souvenirs when we go on trips. You can read more about our system in my blog post: The Dollar Drop & Reading to Earn. You can also see where they stand with regards to the number of books each one has read, etc on these posts : Kids Accomplishments, & Books we Liked.
On Saturday morning I took Gracie, Dominick & Annie to the church for First Communion rehearsal. Everyone needed to know where they were supposed to stand – and what they were supposed to do – so it was time well spent. I think everyone went into the big event with a little more confidence – having had the rehearsal.
Later in the day – there was a Free Comic Day @ a local comic book store – so I took the kids to that. Mind you – I am not a comic book reader, and never really have been. Melani suggested it – and I was game for it. The kids had some fun – but it was a total mob scene! And people were dressed up like it was Comic-Con! I like that the kids are reading chapter books – so I don’t really want them to get too much into the comic books. As I tell them – comic books are for people who don’t have the attention span to read a chapter book – or the imagination to form the images in their head…. I know, I know – I might be wrong – but that is just my feeling!
Later in the afternoon I took Gracie & Annie with me to Home Depot. I ripped off the rotted roof of the playhouse last fall – and haven’t yet finished putting the new roof on. I did get the plywood down – but not the shingles. So it currently has a tarp over it – and is just waiting for some attention. We didn’t have a lot of days in the fall that were conducive to working outside last year – so there are several projects that I have to yet to complete! We got some of the supplies we needed for the playhouse roof and I managed to seal the plywood edges and get the felt down on top of the plywood. Over the coming weeks I hope to wrap things up and get the shingles on it. Both Gracie and Dominick were good helpers – and I enjoyed the time with them.
Sunday was all about Annie and her First Communion! I took her to the church early – and Melani followed a little later. I was so proud of all three of the older kids! Annie for reading and receiving her First Communion, and Gracie & Dominick for serving. Annie did a great job reading – excellent pace and articulation! We practiced almost every night for a couple of weeks before her First Communion during our devotional time in the evening – and it really paid off!
After mass there was a reception downstairs at the church for the entire First Communion class. It was well attended and there was a lot of food! Things were going well at our table until someone spilled a drink! I reached out to help – and then there was punch and cake frosting on almost everything it seemed – including my sport jacket!
After a brief pit-stop at the house, we headed over to Melani’s mother’s house for another party. Thank you Mom for being the ever gracious hostess and the wonderful party for Annie! And thank you to everyone who brought food and attended! A special thank you to Donna for making a beautiful cake out of cupcakes for Annie!
Another special thank you to Uncle Peep’s, Aunt Jeni & the cousins (Evan, Owen & Adam) for making the three hour trip up from Philadelphia – just to share in Annie’s special day!
When coming home from church, Annie found an egg on the ground and, unbeknownst to me, brought it home with her. Dominick now has the egg on his bed stand, wrapped in a napkin and under the dupa of his donkey stuffed animal! He claims he can feel it move when he is holding it. I told him that if a pterodactyl hatches from that egg HE is going to be responsible for removing it from the house…..
We will see if we have a baby bird in a few days!