Monday, September 30, 2013

Jack The Ring Bearer

In April Jack had the privilege of being the ring bearer in Susan Briggs and Brandon Hester's wedding.  It was fun to travel to TN with Jack and Parker and spend a few days with family.  The wedding was beautiful and of course the ring bearer was the most handsome.
 Jack and Brandon

 At the rehearsal dinner we sat in the back so he could play "Temple Run" and not be a distraction to everyone.
 So cute
 Jack and Josie.  She sat down beside him and he said, "Hi.  Do you know how to play Temple Run?  I'll show you."

He did a great job, this was also the first wedding he ever attended.  

Lillie's Jr Yellow Belt

Lillie received her Yellow Jr Belt.
So proud of you Lillie!

Summer Travels

We had the opportunity to spend several weeks out of the city this summer.  Here is a run down on our travels.

Week 1-Camp with Freddy T
Freddy T. spoke at a youth camp in Florida and we joined him.  We pulled the kids of of school for the last week of June (their last week of school) and went to camp with him.  The camp was set up great for a family with all ages to attend.  We stayed in a house on the camp property.  The kids had a great time playing basketball, ping pong, and having room to run around.  The camp property was a lot of fun. They had a zoo, go carts, a water park, and archery.  They also had horseback riding and a zip line for the older kids.

Parker was wiped out of a day of flying and driving.

Jack had fun playing basketball in the driveway

Parker rode in a grocery cart for the first time.

Kids at the zoo

This is the van they gave our family to use for the week... so funny.

Kids riding around with one of the staff members, Mikey.  They loved doing this and he drove crazy.

 Lillie and I challenging the boys to a race
 Elliott and Freddy T.
 Jack and Cody (one of the students at camp)
Freddy T. was the speaker for the middle and high school kids, but the churches children's ministers was there as well and I took our kids to that service each night.  Lillie was singing along with her favorite song "Our God is Greater."

 More pictures from the zoo

Week 2- Panama City Beach, FL
After camp we headed to Panama City Beach, FL with my side of the family.  We’ve been looking forward to this trip for many months.  The kids were so excited to be at the beach and swim as much as they wanted every single day.  Unfortunately it didn’t turn out quite like that.  It rained most of the time we were down there and 11 of the 15 people on the trip came down with a stomach bug that was spread around throughout the week.  It was disappointing.  It was good to be with family, but wasn’t what anyone had planned or had hoped for.  I don’t even have many pictures to document it.

Week 3- Cannon Beach, OR
Our kids rode home with our family to TN for week 3 and Freddy T. and I flew to Portland, OR and drove east to Cannon Beach and spent a week.  It was such a great week.  We felt bad leaving our family after a crazy week at the beach, but this week was just what we needed to rest and relax from life.  A friend of ours has a beach house in Cannon Beach and offered it to us.  A few days into the trip our friends Jonathan and Rachel joined us from TN.  We had a great time exploring, eating, and laughing.  A fun fact about the area is that it’s where the movie Goonies was shot.  It’s one of Freddy T.’s favorite movies!

Before we headed out to Cannon Beach we spent a day in Portland with Paul and Meredith Ramey.  Freddy T. has known the Ramey’s for many years, but they are the family that came to NYC the same time as we did and served as the Worship Pastor at Gallery.  We miss them being here and it’s always good to spend some time together, so refreshing!

 Flower stand in Portland
 We were a long way from home!
 One morning while Freddy T. had coffee with Paul I went to a walk up waffle place we drove by and got myself breakfast.  SO good!
 Paul and Meredith took us to the Rose Garden in Portland.  So many roses and so beautiful.
 Haystack Rock in Cannon Beach
 The beach there was so wide, biggest beach I've ever been on.

 Every night we built a fire on the beach and watched the sun set.  This particular night there were no clouds in the sky and we watched it completely set.  It was amazing.  

 Flying kites
 When the tide was low we could go to Haystack Rock and find all kids of starfish and other sea "things." 

One last sunset

Week 4- Tennessee
After our time in OR we flew back to spend several more days in TN.  Freddy T. spent a lot of time studying these days and we hung out with family.  We went swimming a few times to try to make up for lost time at the beach.
One big thing that happened while we were in TN was this... we got a van! We've been praying for a while that God would provide our family with a van and a church in OH wanted to partner with us by helping us get this. We love having a vehicle now and are so grateful to God for his provision.

Monday, September 09, 2013

Back To School!

Back to school!  We had 3 excited kids this morning anxious to get back to school.  Jack is repeating 1st grade this year.  He has a late birthday, December 24th, just a few days before the cut off date.  He did great last year, but had to work really hard to keep up.  We felt like it would be good for him in the long run to give it another shot.  This way he'll be one of the oldest in the class instead of the youngest in the grade.  He has an amazing attitude and was excited to go back to Mrs. Pascale's class again this year.  Lillie and Elliott started Kindergarten today!  Elliott is in Mrs. Tepper's class and Lillie has Mrs. Barrett.  We are really grateful for their school and their teachers.  

I must admit.  I was probably more excited about school starting than they were :)  This is a game changer for me, having the 3 big kids in school till 2:30 each day.  For the first time in 5 years it will be just me and one baby home during the day.  Hoping to catch up on a little rest, finally stay on top of house work, read a few books, and enjoy some time with friends.

Jack,  1st Grade- "I want to be a police man."
 Elliott, Kindergarten- "I want to be a pirate."
 Lillie, Kindergarten- "I want to be a princess."

 Jack in Mrs. Pascale's class
 Elliott in Mrs. Tepper's class
 Lillie in Mrs. Barrett's class
 Lillie and Elliott came home with a goody bag for their first day.  
 In kindergarten we get to read with our kids for the first 15 minutes of each day.  Lillie and Elliott will rotate back and forth to each others class, so we can read with both of them each day.  Today I went with Elliott and Freddy T. went with Lillie.  
 I think Parker might like the down time while everyone is at school.
You can always tell school is back in session when all the strollers are parked outside the building.