Sunday, May 30, 2010

Bird Island

So on Saturday we went out with Poppy on the boat. We rode for about 30-45 minutes out to this place called Bird Island (no, not where Clifford the Big Red Dog lives....although, when I assured Em that there could be more than one Bird Island she said, "Well, you just never know. We'll have to look around for him". Ha!)

Anyway, once we anchored the boat we explores tons of pools of water, hunted for sand dollars, played bocce ball, and walked the island. It was a GLORIOUS day!!! I will SOOOO miss living here, in paradise!

Mommy and Daddy's self-portrait....yes, we are wearing suits:) Ha!

Our little sunlover, Em!

Muscle man, Case!

Em playing Bocce Ball.

Case playing Bocce Ball.

Poppy, Case, Daddy, and Em playing Bocce Ball.

Friday nights...

It's that time of year....when we head down to The Boardwalk Bash on Friday nights. Free popcorn, dollar drafts, and a live music. We get to see lot of friends, feed the turtles and fish in the pond, and sometimes even happen upon other fun things like pirates, RC boat races on the pond, etc. It's a great time at the end of the week, and heck...I get out of cooking! Yay!

Em rockin' the night away.

Em and Case were perched on this bench watching the RC boats zoom around the pond.

My handsome little devil.

Daddy and Emily lounging.

Friday, May 28, 2010

Jesus Loves Me....

We have just come to the end of another year of AWANA. This year Emily was in Sparks and Case was in Cubbies for a second year (all of that is based on age and grade).

We have been SOOO blessed by this program, and in particular by their teachers. For those of you that are unfamiliar with the kind of reminds me of a Christian version of Scouts. They have vests to display patches, jewels, and other rewards they earn for learning Scripture. They study a lesson at home each week and then review it several different ways during the weekly meeting...songs, stories, games, etc.

Em is such a diligent student, and was so motivated to earn jewels that she finished her whole book half way through the year. As a result, she spent the second half of the year reviewing it. She got a special reward for having done both.

Even though this was Case's second year as a Cubbie, it was a different book. I saw SUCH a HUGE difference in his ability and desire to learn from last year to this year. He looked forward to the book work, memorized verses so readily and with ease, and was one of Miss Tammy's stars in regards to behavior in her ALL BOY class (God bless that woman)!

They both have LOVED going. I initially did it b/c we didn't have a church home here, and therefore they weren't getting Sunday School teaching of any kind. Now that we are moving to a place where we know we'll have a church, will we still pursue being in an AWANA club? I don't know...but I know that my children have learned such valuable lessons and have had a blast. They most certainly know the fundamentals of the gospel in a more solidified way, and know that Jesus LOVES them! I've seen this overflow out of them as Em has shared her faith with friends, and as Case has quoted a lesson he learned from scripture in the midst of an argument with his sister saying, "Emily, the Bible says we shouldn't hurt others back when they hurt us." (Yes, that truly did happen over Spring Break...Chad and I couldn't stop laughing!).

Anyway, here are a few pictures from our AWANA closing night program and party....

Emily with her her fellow Sparks (I'll try to post the video of them singing their songs soon too).

Case with his second year ribbon award (not sure about that silly face.)

Case opted to NOT take a plate, but instead double fisted goodies w/ a soda tucked under the arm (like father, like son eh? Again with the goofy grin???).

My two little piggies. When asked what their favorite part of AWANA each week was, they both would reply snack-time. What a surprise!

And just thought I'd throw this one in for a good laugh. Case asked me, "Mom, why do you and Daddy always take pictures of us. Can't I take one of you?" And my new answer to his question would be....well, just look at that picture and you'll know. Ha!

Stayin' alive...

So, I don't currently have any pictures of Em in her dance recital attire, but here are a few pictures from afterwords...make-up and hair still "done". She tapped to "Stayin' alive" and did ballet to "You've Got a Friend" (from Toy Story). The theme for the whole Showcase was "A Night at the Movies".

Daddy bought her flowers, on his own, and I thought it was so thoughtful that he got her ones to match her costume (yellow, white and black). He's such a great dad!

These were her first flowers....and BOY HOWDY did she LOVE getting them. She didn't overreact when they were given to her, but she proceeded to carry them around the rest of the day into the restaurant and even into Wal-Mart when shopping later. I told Chad that those flowers were bound to be the highlight of the whole day for her, and they most certainly were!

She also got such a kick out of the fact that she was still "done-up" while in Wal-Mart....she's so aware of that kind of amazes me!

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Another one "bites" the dust

Em came home from school the other day missing tooth number 2! I happened to be at the Y in boot camp when she came home, so she asked Daddy for paper to write me a note. The note says, "I lost my tooth at school. I was eating my shirt on the the carpet. By Emily"! Hilarious! Her sweet teachers put it in a baggy for her to bring home. As soon as I read the note and saw Em she promptly put it into her tooth fairy pillow.

For her first tooth she got $5...apparently a tradition in the hubs' family. For tooth number 2...a silly band! Are your kiddos into these? They are rubber bands shaped like animals, instruments, etc that kids are wearing around like bracelets. The big thing is to trade with others for silly bands you like. Too funny! They are such a treasured possession around our house that I've begun to use them as a means of rewarding good behavior and as consequences for bad (taking them away). You should have seen the tears tonight when they had to surrender them ALL to me for their ongoing terrible behavior.

Anyway, on another tangent....we don't really even do the tooth fairy. I know there are wildly varying opinions on this topic, but for us we chose to make it fun but keep it real. They still tuck it under their pillow, they still get a fun treat/money, but they know that it's us that is doing it because we want their teeth as precious memories. They also know that they are NOT to tell other children that the tooth fairy is not real....because everyone's family does it different.

Okay, I've rambled enough...nite!

Friday, May 21, 2010

Survival techniques with napkins???

One of our favorite places to go out to eat as a family is "chips-n-dip dip", a.k.a the local mexican restaurant:) We can get pretty excited over it, and we do it often!

The other night after Em's dress rehearsal we opted to stop in for a bite. Em was cold and I had NOTHING to offer her clothes-wise, so I put a napkin on her lap and shoulders. Well, they thought that was just HILARIOUS (doesn't take much around here, people). So, the napkin fun began....

Thursday, May 20, 2010


This meal can only happen when its 1. Summer and the Farmer's Market has an amazing selection of yummy goods, and 2. Because both Poppy and the hubs were not around and I fed the kids something else (although they probably would like most of it). I was in heaven! I even had the cucumber/tomato salad and the beans again tonight but replaced the wrap with sauteed mushrooms, peppers, and onion! Ahhh....

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Life Lessons

So, Em is approaching her first dance recital (showcase, as it's called at this studio)'s this Saturday.

When we started dance in the Fall it was because Em had been asking for 2 years if she could take it. We finally decided to dig deep in our pockets and make it happen because she'd been patient, understanding, and because honestly...we felt that 5 was a good age to begin.

We signed her up for a combo class so that she would have maximum exposure and be able to figure out what she enjoys and is good at. It was a Ballet/Tap/Tumble class. Well, she LOVES the tumble, likes the ballet, and doesn't care for tap a bit.

Well, with the turn of the new year, the classes really begin to focus on the Showcase routines, which just happen to be ballet and tap. Once Em began to realize that was the case, she lost interest in going and one week had a MAJOR melt down at the studio just before class. This was one of those that left me wondering who the child was that I was football carrying out to the car screaming and crying! She is dramatic, but not in that was UNBELIEVABLE!!!

That night I put her straight to bed at 5:30 p.m., but not before I had a long talk with her about finishing what you start. She agreed to see it through to the Showcase. Whew!

Since that time, she's really not said another word about it all. So, I thought she might have changed her mind and was enjoying herself. Well, the other day someone asked her if she was excited for the Showcase this weekend and she said, "No, not really. Well, actually yes....because that means I've finished what I started and am done with dance!" Hilarious! I guess we'll start looking for gymnastics for her, eh? Ha!

Anyway, here was my attempt to put her short hair in a bun for dress rehearsal the other night.
Not bad, right?

And here she is all made up (to studio requirements for lighting). She's a beautiful little girl, but this is so scary to me...1. because she looks all grown up, but 2. because I don't want her to think this makes her pretty. Oh gracious the battles that lie ahead, eh? Whew!

Sunday, May 16, 2010

"See"ing is believing....

Our dear friends The Sees are packing up and leaving us for the beautiful mountains of Colorado in just a matter of days. They came into our lives as a just a time when we most needed friendship. We have spent countless days at the beach, the pool, playing games, going to Disney, working out, having dinner, and just doing life together. They have taught us so many things...little things like how to find shark's teeth, play Power Grid, operate a Mac and iPhone....and they have taught us big things like how by loving our children you love us, how to gracefully and honestly walk through challenging times, and how being thoughtful and generous with those you come in contact with is never a sacrifice but always a joy. We will truly miss them and as they leave here I can honestly say that they leave us changed for the better!

We were blessed to have Leslie take our family pictures one last time before she heads west:) Just another tangible way that she has loved us and blessed us. The photo up top is one from the shoot, and please go check out her work at She is amazing!

We love you Leslie and Tiger!

The Johnsons

We had some good friends come for a visit this weekend...The Johnson Family. They are so fun and easy to be around, and our kiddos LOVE one another!

Here are the boys (Ryan, Case, and Pace) at bedtime on Friday night, gathered around "Mr. Jeremy" as he read them a Bible story.

And here is Em with all the boys as we read other bedtime stories. Amazingly, sweet Kennedy never made it into a picture, so I'll be sure and include one of her on the beach.

And here are a few of our first official day at the beach this summer! It was a GLORIOUS day!




Tuesday, May 11, 2010

"X" marks the spot

I've been meaning to share this one for quite some time.

Em is such a precocious child. She always has been. She's also highly emotional and a bit dramatic. I have NO idea where she gets it from:)

So, one day after sending her to her room for a "time out" of sorts, she came out and slapped down a piece of paper with my name on it. Below my name was a bunch of smiley faces and one had an "X" marked over it.

Me: What's this?

Emily: Every time you put me in time out or do something I don't like I'm going to mark off one of you happy faces because it makes me sad or mad.

Me: (In my head I'm DYING laughing). Hmmm. Well, I guess you'd better draw some more happy faces and get your pen ready....


Can you believe that child? She cracks me up!

Well, over the weeks and months that followed she forgot about it and then one day she came out with this (see picture below):

Yes, I'm still in the lead....but it's good to know that even POPPY can make her pull out that pen! Ha! When I asked her why Poppy got marked off she said, "When you and Daddy went out of town for the weekend and Poppy watched us he had to "talk" to us two times and I didn't like it." Oh my! And what about Daddy's "X"....I'm not sure she even remembered, but you'd better believe that the hubs was eating up the fact that he's the good guy right now. Oh brother!

You people see what I have to put up with?