Monday, November 23, 2015

Thanksgiving Break

Graham kicked off his Thanksgiving break with a feast at his school.  I was happy to eat with this cutie!

The kids are off this whole week from school, and we've already had some fun!  Our neighborhood had a fall festival with an awesome face painter.  All four of mine took advantage!



Today the weather was beautiful, so we spent some time outdoors.  I glanced over and saw Sydney attempting to ride Graham's scooter while wearing roller skates. Perhaps not the best idea!!!

I am thankful for this week off from school, and I am beyond thankful for these four!

Happy Thanksgiving to everyone!



Sunday, November 1, 2015

A Spooky Halloween

Halloween festivities began last week at our church's annual Trunk or Treat!  The kids debuted this year's costumes, and after weeks of planning, they were thrilled to finally get to wear them!

Deedee and Papaw came over to see them, and Dale took some fun, spooky pictures! 



Sydney was first to decide what she wanted to be this year, and she was most excited about all of the makeup!


Clare decided that she wanted to be a multi-colored skeleton!  We constructed that with a black shirt and leggings and a lot of duct tape!

Graham made the cutest little mummy you have ever seen, and he even decided to make his preschool pumpkin a mummy too!


Jane was the last to decide on her costume, but she ended up being thrilled with her black cat creation.

We were joined by LoLo and Pop at Trunk or Treat, and the kids enjoyed their first round of trick or treating and playing games.

Then, Halloween night finally arrived! There was lots of make-up to be done, and Daddy even got to practice his face painting skills.

With a few minor costume tweaks from last week....make-up changes and comfortable shoes, we were ready to go! 

We joined some neighbors for a little party and then it was off to Trick or Treat!

We went home with buckets full of candy and totally exhausted from the excitement of it all.  Our skeleton was especially out of sorts by the end of the night!

It was a super fun Halloween, and Graham is already talking about what he wants to be next year!


Sunday, October 25, 2015

Halloween Through The Years

We are coming up on our tenth year of celebrating Halloween with my little ones!  Let's take a look back!
Clare made her Halloween debut in 2006  as the cutest pea pod that you ever saw!!!
In 2007, I was hugely pregnant with the twins and didn't take as many pictures as I should have (in fact, I had to get this one from my mother-in-law), but Clare was a sweet little bumblebee.
The girls first embraced the themed costume in 2008 as M&M's!  Sweet, sweet, sweet!
2009 brought back the bumblebee....along with a ladybug and butterfly!
One of my favorite pictures came in 2010.  Jane decided to be Wendy, Sydney was Tinkerbell, and Clare was a bride.  I love the picture of Wendy and Tinkerbell checking each other out!
Graham joined the mix in 2011, and superheroes seemed like the obvious choice!
The Wizard of Oz year brought another favorite picture!  I couldn't have posed them better if I tried!
It was off to Neverland in 2013.  Tinkerbell made her second appearance!!!
We were all about the turtles in 2014!  Turtle Power!
Looking forward to another fun year!!

Sunday, October 18, 2015

Double Trouble

These two bring me so much happiness....and quite a few gray hairs!!!
It's so interesting to watch them grow up.  They are wired so differently.  They play with different friends at school, have different fashion sense, and are bothered by different things.
 Jane is eager to please and cooperative, and Sydney is funny and full of strong-willed personality.  Some things never change, as evidenced by these pictures....
However, at the end of the day, they always watch out for each other.  They get along really well (for the most part), and make each other laugh like no one else.  They still share a room, and at bedtime, we are constantly getting onto them to be quiet and stop giggling!  Who knows what they find so funny?
I love all of the quirky things that make each of them so different.  But I really love witnessing the bond that these two have!

Wednesday, October 14, 2015

Mini Mozarts

Several years ago, my grandmother generously told me that we could have her piano whenever we wanted it.  About six months ago, my parents graciously delivered the piano to our house!  Thus began several weeks of lots of piano "playing," also known as piano banging!  The newness eventually fizzled out, and the piano waited for someone to show it some real love!
This fall, Clare decided that she wanted to take lessons.  She started about a month ago, and she is really enjoying it.  She is anxious to learn more, and she (mostly) willingly practices and looks forward to her lessons!  Having no musical talent myself, I look forward to seeing her progress.

Graham, predictably, likes to do whatever his big sisters are doing.  And lately, he's heard a lot of Yankee Doodle being practiced on the piano!  Monkey see, monkey do!


I fondly remember playing on Mamma's piano every time we visited her house growing up, and I am thrilled to let my kids broaden their musical horizons on such a special instrument!

Thursday, October 1, 2015

Quick Look


We'll go youngest to oldest for this post!  Graham is such a trooper!  Since I am working the two days a week that he is at preschool, he gets the pleasure of running all of my errands with me on the other days of the week.  He is so happy and easy-going and just generally pleasant;  I love having his company.  Now don't get me wrong, he'd rather go to the park than the grocery store, so I try to do fun things with him too!  I'm going to miss my sidekick next year when he's in kindergarten!
I thought Miss Sydney was going to give us our first broken bone a couple of weeks ago.  She fell
down the stairs and sprained her ankle pretty badly.  An x-ray confirmed that it was just sprained, so we avoided that broken bone least for the time-being.  Her foot hurt her for about two weeks, but not enough to slow her down too much.   Thankfully, this little fireball is one tough cookie. 

Jane continues to be my little fashionista.  She wears scarves, jewelry, belts, lots of different hairstyles, and has a constant armful of hair rubber bands.  Thankfully, she creates these looks herself, and rarely needs help with the execution!  Most often, she doesn't care if her "looks" are met with a questioning glance....and this simultaneously makes me proud and crazy!

Clare informed us all that yesterday was her half birthday!  Happy 9 1/2 to this goof ball!  She has been reading a lot lately.....with a little push from school to read 20 books in the fall semester!  She also recently auditioned for a speaking role in the Christmas musical, and she is thrilled with the part that she got!  While I can't say that I will always be excited about all of the extra Sunday afternoon rehearsals, remembering how ecstatic she was about getting this role will certainly help!
That's a quick peek into this fabulous foursome....all recently excited to get a swim in at the natatorium!


Sunday, September 20, 2015

Catch Up!

 We have settled into the school year quite nicely!  The girls are all enjoying school and liking their teachers.  Graham loves preschool and being in the 4's class.  His teachers frequently tout the advantages of being the "top dog" on campus, and Graham is embracing the role!  I am working at the preschool in the two's class, and I enjoy seeing this little man throughout the day! 
The kids' activities keep us busy after school.  Despite efforts to avoid the "busyness," it seems to have caught up with us!  Jane and Sydney are playing soccer and participating in rehearsals for a Christmas program at church.  Clare is swimming and just started piano lessons.  She will join in the church program rehearsals next month.  Graham is thoroughly enjoying his first soccer season.   One of my biggest struggles as a mother is balancing my desire for my kids to be active, well-rounded kids who get to try lots of different activities with my inclination to let them have free time and just "be kids."  Not to mention eating dinner together as a family.....a high priority on my list!  It's amazing how quickly the afternoons fill up!  For now, we're enjoying all of our activities, and I am beyond thankful that Casey is around to help out so much!