Sunday, August 30, 2015

Back to business

We are slowly getting back into the swing of things. I even put aside my denial that summer is over, and registered big girls for ballet, and little girl for gymnastics. We've been walking to and from school everyday.
I've been struggling a little bit with not having a schedule. And being sad summer is over. And the weirdness of having only one at home. Like lunches and naps and normalcy have been out the window. Monday caught up with both of us. She was in an evening time out and fell asleep. Wake up call for me to get on top of things.
On Tuesday we had Ellie and Adeline over to play. We weren't sure how Adeline would do, but she was great! She was a little unsure in the morning. We decided to go to the park and the lone grey cloud over our neighborhood opened and a warm rain came down for about 30 minutes.
We finally made it to the park. The girls played and Adeline fell asleep in the swing. We stayed till lunchtime. 
This little chic was good all day! We were all so surprised! Addie had her first piano lesson of the school year. She was so excited to play beauty and the beast for sister Nelson. It was a fun surprise for her teacher.
Chris has been working Monday, Wednesday, Friday, and Saturdays. On. Tuesday he went and mowed for Brenna's grands. He gets out of school at 1, so that's nice. He still hasn't decided which colleges to apply for, but we're working on it. 

The girls love getting postcards. These ones are from auntie allie's trip to Philadelphia.
On Wednesday we had our preschool planning meeting. We've got 9 kids that we split into 2 groups. We're starting this week, so it should be good! We also had daisies and A days and scouts. All the things that have made me sad summer is over, and the craziness of the school year is beginning. 

On Thursday it was Delaney's turn to go play at the ainas. I spent the day organizing my thoughts, girls schedules, dinners, lunches, etc. it was nice to have a day to myself. 
That evening the bigs took the littles on a date to salsas and the park. Love.
Delaney has never had a piggy bank, but she found Lexi's, so we facetimed her and asked her for it. She said yes! Delaney wanted a pic with the piggy, but not holding it. She's silly.
And happy!

Mission preview

Last Sunday evening the stake held a mission preview. Matt and I thought it would be good for both of us to go, so I asked Joni to watch my kids since hers go to bed late anyway. (: they had so much fun!
Meanwhile, we rode up to the stake center with the Davis' family. It was fun to ride with friends, and Christian brought brenna, so basically he is already a great missionary.
It's so crazy to think that Christian could go on a mission in less than a year! Say what?!
These two are both 2012 babies, but D is a January and A is a December. Adam is definitely bigger though.
I am always so grateful for Sunday's. I am always go, go, go, so it's nice to have a day where we are commanded to slow down and focus on what's important.
We got girls quickly to bed and ready for another week'o'school!

Tuesday, August 25, 2015

Virginia beach

We were up early Saturday morning. babes in hotels will do that to ya. (; we had a leisurely breakfast of eating all the foods we'd all brought to share. Muffins, fruit, donuts, cheese, bagels, and juice, all so yummy! We slowly got all ready and headed to the beach!
When we started looking for hotels we realized that something would have to give. It would either have to be hotel cleanliness, cost, or proximity to the beach. We decided proximity to the beach wasn't the most important thing, since we wouldn't be coming and going from our hotel, we'd just be going. So we stayed about 15 minutes away. We found a great parking spot at the beach, and got our semi-broken (doh!) canopy set up, along with all of our chairs, coolers, and food. We lathered up and Alecia and I hit the waves!
I told her I was good to stay and play in the water all day if she wanted, or I would also follow her back up to the beach. It was so fun to just play together! Shelly came out as far as her cute preggy self could. Then Sarah and Leisa were able to come out while the babes were entertained. We felt like teenagers with no responsibilities, it was awesome!
We had such a good time. And the ocean was seriously cray-cray. I've been to a lot of beaches in the last month, and this water was nuts! The sets were fast and furious. I swear I've not gotten slapped by crashing waves so many times in my life!
Not to mention that I probably stepped on no less than 100 crabs. Ok, that's probably an exaggeration, (but maybe not) but there were lots of crabs and other various creatures underfoot. Each time we touched something we'd squeal like little girls and swim away or tread water till we felt safe.
The lay of the land was crazy too! You'd walk into the water, get a little deeper, and then, boom - sandbar. Repeat 4 or 5 times. We would be out super far, but just in water to our waists because of all the sandbars.
And the currents! It was like a not-so-lazy river, (so just like a river, I guess) and as the day wore on, we just gave up on swimming back after being carried downstream. We'd body surf to shore and walk back. It was crazy and fun! The day was nice and the water was warm.
We swam and ate and talked and swam. It was a really great day. The only thing that would have made it better would have been to stay longer. 
But alas, we had to be home that night. We wrapped things up by writing "Alecia's birthday bash!" in the sand and asking yet another stranger to take a pic of us.
it also happened to be Petra's first birthday, so we drew a birthday note for her too. (:
After the beach, we drove to the boardwalk and found a hotel with an outdoor shower. Then we managed to weasel our way into the bathroom to dry off and change. Then on to Cheesecake Factory! Sarah had talked to Alecia about what she wanted to do on her birthday and she said "I just really want to go to the beach and to Cheesecake Factory." Cha-ching!
I love sharing food! We got 3 appetizers, 1 salad, 2 entrees, and 3 desserts. It was all so delicious, I was totally satisfied, but i didn't feel like I wanted to throw up. It was perfect!
Our server came and sang to Petra for her special day. They brought her a bowl of whipped cream and Leisa let her have at it. It was pretty cute!
We had an amazing time, despite a couple of sunburns. :/ And we got some funny looks after we all sat along this booth. You've got to be ready before you ask for a picture to be taken, that's all.
And another one for good measure.
We got on the road by 7, had a super easy drive, dropped all the ladies off, cleaned the van windows, and then rolled up at home around 11:30. It was exhausting, but oh so fun!

And my month of beach going is pretty much over. I do want to check out a local beach here, but as far as big, 'real' beaches go, that's it. After we left NC, I felt like, it's ok, I get 2 more beaches.  then after Mexico it was still ok, because i still had Virginia beach to look forward to. And now, after 3 different beaches in 2 1/2 weeks, my 2015 beach going days are dwindling down. Feeling so blessed to have enjoyed such an amazing summer!

So we pulled off the surprise of the year and had an absolutely amazing time doing it. And I call that a successful birthday bash! 

Alecia's birthday bash!

I've got an amazing group of women I call my friends. We try to always celebrate each other's babies and birthdays. Alecia is always right in the middle of the planning - birthdays, babies, Christmas parties, Alecia is always planning and helping to plan. So Sarah, Shelly and I came up with an epic birthday surprise for Alecia. We started planning months ago, picked a day, got with josh, got with our ladies, and all circuits were a go! Everyone was available, everything went smoothly. It took some doing, but last Friday was finally the big surprise! It was so exciting, we'd been planning for several months and the big day was finally here!
Josh came up with the idea to write his plans for the weekend on their calendar, and kind of insinuate that he was having a surprise party for her. He wrote "Alecias birthday bash!" for Friday and Saturday, so they could keep the days clear. 
We met up and wrote birthday messages all over the van. Joni's awesome 12 passenger van came through again, and we were all able to ride in the same car, which was so much more fun than splitting up would have been. We got lots of honks. Everytime we got one, it took us a minute to remember that it was a birthday honk. So fun!
We hadn't really talked about how we were going to make the big reveal. We just kind of drove into it. We told Joni to honk, and they heard and looked out the window. Alecia was seriously confused! She had thought she and josh were going on a date and then having a party the next day. 
Sarah was like, "let's go to the beach!" I think Alecia said something like "overnight? I don't have a bag packed."
But we had thought of that and josh had packed it up. Like magic, Curtis brought the bag on down.
And just like that, our birthday bash weekend was on!
7 mommas and 2 babies (1 friend wasn't able to make it:() headed down the 3 1/2 hours to Virginia beach. The drive was easy, we stopped at wawa (a first for me, but pretty tasty!) for dinner, and had fun visiting and telling Alecia about all of our birthday planning. We had each brought snacks to share, so while we visited in the hotel room, we munched. Miss Adeline came to me and mooched some twizzlers. She loves me. (;
We only stayed up till about 1 that night, a very early girls night for us, but we had a fun day of beaching ahead of us, so we needed our beauty sleep. Sarah and I (and Adeline in the morning) shared a bed, and Joni and kassi were next to us. Then Leisa, Petra, Alecia, and Shelly were just down the hall. Birthday bash day 1 - ✔️. 

More in betweens

Second day of school! Still happy little bike riders!
We had Ellie over on Thursday to play with us. She had really wanted to walk to school with us on Wednesday, so she was really excited to get to go with us on Thursday. I texted Sarah and told her we were busy making all of Ellie's dreams come true. You have to admit, that's a pretty happy 3-year-old. (;
Delaney was soooo mad that she didn't get a new pair of school shoes! She was sooo interested in those shoes too! She put them on and walked all around. She tried really hard to tie them too. The trials and tribulations of being the baby in the family.
I cal this one "a girl and her lovey."
On Thursday night, we got a visit from our old friend from Clovis. Rusty is traveling all over the east coast, and was able to come have dinner and stay the night with us. It was fun to catch up with her. She spent some time visiting with Laney Friday morning. She got a real kick out of our little friendly miss. Laney told her that her 2 favorite colors were pink, white, black, and red. She also showed her our rocking horse. It rocks, she explained. Little sister is a trip.
I've been really bad with our schedule so far. Like, we have none. Including, but not limited to lunch and naps. This was another day that Laney climbed onto the couch and fell asleep.
I just stood and stared at her for awhile. So in love! Right after this picture, she rolled over, halfway opened her eyes, and quickly asked why I had turned the tv off because "I wasn't sleeping!" Silly.
Frankie let me carry her backpack, but she wanted to put her lunchbox on her bike and ride home. (:
Right after school on Friday, I headed out for my third August adventure. Run, run, run! Fun, fun, fun!

1st day of school!

5:45 rolls around way too early! Seminary starts at 6:15 again this year, but thankfully it's just around the corner, so Chris doesn't leave till 6:10. His last first day of high school! Eeeeeee! So crazy to me!
There he goes! Gideon has seen two of my kids through their last first day of high school. Awww, sentimental!
Next up were these hot messes! Miss Frankie-frog always has a pose!
And this sweet 2nd grader! So big! She's all excited for next year because she will have class upstairs. Sometimes I'll see Matt holding Addie, and she's just huge! Where did this giant girl come from?
I always make sure to take pictures of the little ones left at home too. 
This picture and dress felt familiar to me, so I looked back through the blog, and sure enough! Frankie had worn it for the first day of school in 2013 too. Frankie was addicted to her juicy then,  funny we don't even usually have juice in the house now!
Biking to school is so much more fun than getting on the bus! For mom and kids!
We made a new friend and she offered to get a pic of the 4 of us. I really should practice standing more awkwardly though.
Kindergartner and 2nd grader, reporting to school!
And there she goes!
Frankie decided she wanted to order lunch the very first chance she got. Then today, (a week later) Addie decided to order (they order once a week), and Frankie was like "no! I don't want to order ever again! It's gross!" I can't argue with her, but it's funny that she's got this sophisticated palate now.
And then there were two! Just me and my gal.
We forgot the stroller that first day, and on the way to school Delaney kind of whimpered and said "why are you running me?" On the way home I let her walk as slow as her little slow heart desired. (:
We had an appt, and then Ainas came over to play with us, so we had a fun first day. The girls had dressed up, and then Laney laid on the couch and fell asleep. She stayed asleep when I transferred her to the stroller, and didn't wake up till after we had our school girls in hand. She was tired!
The little kindergartner came home sassy! I didn't push it, but I got several eye rolls thrown my way.
And she wanted a picture of her eyeball too.
I didn't get much out of sassafras, but Addie had a great day! Chris' schedule was not what he wanted, so he didn't love it. He wanted to get out at 11:30, but they had him getting out at 2. Now he's getting out at 1:10, which is a little better, though not what he wanted. He'll survive. (: and another 1st day of school goes down in the books!