Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Fun visitors

We have been lucky to have a few friends from Hendersonville come visit this summer.  It was so good to see our friends and show them Birmingham.  My friend Juliana and her sweet kids, Ellie and Sam came to stay with us one night while Josh was at camp.  We took them to the McWane Center and had so much fun.

laying on a bed of nails

Will got to milk a cow,,,

and change a tire!

Isabel spent more time playing with Sam

Everyone loves bubbles!


sweet friends in a monopoly car

A few days after they left the McMains family stopped by to see us on their way home from the beach.  Although I forgot to take any pictures we had a great time talking with them and watching Will and Samuel play together.  We have a lot of girl visitors at our house so Will was excited to have Samuel over for a few hours.

Then my good friend, Katrina, came with her two kids, Lincoln and Lillie.  Lincoln and Lillie are Isabel and Will's ages and were their best friends in Hendersonville.  We all had a great time being together again!!


July 4th 2015

I have always loved our July 4th celebrations in Hendersonville but we were excited about our first one in our new house in Alabama.  Although there was some rain to deal with, we still had a great day.  We had lots of family come over to our house, cooked out and then watched fireworks.  One of our neighbors buys a lot of fireworks and sets them off in the col de sac.  It was like our own private fireworks show.   Everyone loved it!



I think the kids loved the smoke bombs as much as the actual fireworks.


cousins and popsicles

Josh may have had a little too much fun handing out sparklers

this girls used to be pretty terrified of sparklers.  She's come a long way in the past few years.

this little man loves it all!

sweet cousins

Izzy and Addy

I love these two crazy kids!

Monday, June 29, 2015

Trip to Arkansas

I knew that all of Josh's trips with the students would be hard on my kids this year.  Isabel and Will like their daddy at home with them and to be honest, so do I.  However, he has 2 mission trips, beach camp and a staff retreat this summer so I knew we were going to have to find a way to make the best of it.  I decided that the best plan was for us to go out of town while he is gone.  So last week when Josh went to Houston for the high school mission trip, my mom, the kids and I headed to Arkansas to visit family that we had not seen in over a year and we had such a great time!

The trip started with some car trouble that meant that we had to take Josh's car instead of the minivan.  I have to admit that I may have had a slight panic attack about that.  It may not be cool but trips are always better in the van!  Luckily the kids were troopers and we all survived.  We stayed with Aunt Sandra and got to see my cousin Dana and her family and my cousin Drew.  We ate too much, talked and laughed while the kids played outside and just had such a good time!

Will, Isabel and their 2nd cousin Ella were ready for the slip-n-slide



Will had so much fun that he lost a loose tooth on the slip-n-slide and the tooth fairy had to come all the way to Arkansas!


Isabel loved playing with little Luke

This girl is so cute and all about dressing up!

When the girls disappeared to play barbies, Will had plenty of fun with Luke

I love my aunt!

We celebrated Father's Day and my aunt's birthday while we were there. 
It was also Josh and my 13th anniversary but fortunately we got to celebrate with dinner out the week before!

Luke loves his Uncle Drew

Trying to get a decent picture of the cousins...aren't they cute!

Isabel and Will with "great" Aunt Sandra!



Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Valleydale VBS 2015

Isabel and Will absolutely loved VBS this year. They went to a VBS at a small church in Hendersonville last year but this was their first experience with a VBS on such a large scale. They loved every part of it. I loved helping and being a part of it as well. 

    Isabel's friend from school lives near    
      us and she came with us all week. 

   The stage for the drama was incredible!

Josh was Long John Silver in the VBS drama. He was quite the celebrity all week. After I took this picture I turned around and found kids lining up to get their picture made with him as well!

It was an exhausting week but lots of fun and most importantly so many kids learned that knowing God is our greatest treasure!!

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

water guns and sprinkler fun

It doesn't take long for it to feel like summer around here so the kids were more than ready to start playing in the water.  Isabel brought home some cheap water guns from her last day of school party which began a week long obsession with water guns for these two.





Another day some friends came over and of course they ended up playing in the sprinkler toys

loving summer already!

Sunday, May 31, 2015

last day of school 2015

After counting down for weeks, the last day of school finally arrived!  This year has seriously flown by!  Although it was such a great year, we were all ready to say goodbye to early morning alarms, making lunches, carpool, homework and rushing to bed so we could start all over again with those early mornings.

These two have handled a year FILLED with transition better than I ever thought they could.  I feel like all my prayers were answered.  They had great teachers, made sweet friends, and truly loved their school.  As excited as they were, Isabel got in the car that afternoon and immediately started crying.  She was so sad to leave her friends and of course, her teacher.  I hated to see her sad but I was thankful that it meant she had had such a good year.


My little man LOVED his first year of school!  My social extrovert loved being around his friends all day but he did find some time to learn too.  He is an amazing reader!  He quickly learned all his kindergarten words and then started working at a 1st grade level.  He learned his math skills quickly and his teacher told me that she could tell when he was getting bored so she had more challenging activities that he was allowed to go get at those times.  He had a little girl in his class with pretty severe special needs and I loved hearing him talk about her.  He was so proud of her when she did well and wanted to pray for her when she was having health trouble.  The highlight of his week was when he got to sit by her or play with her.  I pray that sensitive, loving part of him only grows as he gets older.  

My beautiful girl seems more grown up every day!  She now hates bows and begs to wear her hair completely down every day.  I tend to fight this more than I should just because it makes her look even older.  She takes showers now, washing her body and hair totally without help.  We spent part of the 2nd semester dealing with some boys in her grade who kept telling everyone that they had a crush on her and then staring at her anytime they were in the same place.  Fortunately she did not reciprocate and really just wanted the boys to leave her alone!  Once again, she did a great job academically, reading way above her grade level and picking up new concepts quickly.  Although there was the normal amount of girl drama on the playground, her teacher assured me that she was usually not the one causing the drama but often tried to keep the peace.  I love this girl so much and I'm so proud of who she is becoming.  

Thursday, May 28, 2015

Mrs. Smith

Isabel had an amazing teacher this year!  I have no doubt that God placed Isabel in Mrs. Smith's class because He knew it would be the perfect match for her.  Isabel absolutely loved Mrs. Smith and Mrs. Smith absolutely loved Isabel!  I knew it would be a happy year for Isabel at my fall conference when she told me that she could look at Isabel's "big doe eyes" and know if she was upset about something.  She told me that she would do anything in the world to make it all alright for Isabel. And she did!  She challenged Isabel, praised her for doing well, and took the time to really care about all her students and do what was best for them.  Isabel will miss her so much next year but is excited that Mrs. Smith will still be her cheer leading coach!


bears, baseball, and toes...

A quick recap of the past few weeks from pictures from my phone:

The 2nd graders put on a "talking zoo" the week before school was out.  Each student picked an animal that they researched.  They wrote and memorized a speech about that animal and then dressed up as it.  At the talking zoo, parents and other students came around to hear their presentations.  Isabel was a grizzly bear and she did a great job.  She is definitely the cutest bear I've ever seen!

One of Isabel and Will's good friends had a super fun birthday party at the Alabama vs. Vanderbilt baseball game.  While the birthday boy, Yates, was getting to throw the first pitch I managed to take a picture of his biggest fans!

For Mother's Day, my mom and I decided to get pedicures together and bring Isabel with us for her first pedicure.  She. Loved. It!  I'm afraid we have created a pedicure monster!  She loved the massage chair and could not stop laughing because her feet are so ticklish.  She also picked neon green polish regardless of my suggestions of any other color!!

the end of baseball season...

Will's team made it to the tournament and even won their first game but the season ended when they lost their second game of the tournament to the one undefeated team.  They played great though and had a great time!  Will loved playing baseball and made some good friends on his team.  His coach told Josh and me that he would like to nominate Will for all-stars if we were ok with it.  However, it is a mandatory 6 day a week practice and games for 5 weeks and about $500.  We just decided that it would not be great for our family and that Will would probably hate baseball after such an intense experience at 6 years old.

Ready to go with his helmet on

He had some great hits!

How the sisters endured the many baseball games...

Will's coach handing him his trophy.  He had great things to say about his playing but also his character which made me so proud!

"GO REDSOX!"

So proud of his trophy

This boy loves baseball and his daddy!