Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Gotta Keep 'Em Separated

After much thought and discussion, Casey and I have decided to separate Jane and Sydney in school this year.  Originally, we thought we would do this in kindergarten, but due to their personalities, recommendations from their teachers, and just a gut feeling, we have opted to do it one year earlier.

We made this decision several months ago, and since then, we have been discussing it with the girls.  They are fully aware that they will be in different classes, and repeatedly tell me that they "will see each other at chapel and recess."

While separating them hurts my heart just a little bit, I am kind of excited to see how they will do individually.  I think Jane especially will really spread her wings.  I also think it will be good for the girls to be separated so that they aren't compared academically.  They will each be able to learn at their own pace.

Jane and Sydney each know who their teachers will be in the next school year, and we will go meet them soon.  I am excited to see how both of these girls will do this year.  Perhaps being apart will make them appreciate each other more when they are home together???

Monday, August 27, 2012

First Grade, First Day

The much anticipated first day of first grade finally arrived!  We met Clare's teacher, Ms. Thomas, last week, and she was received Clare's seal of approval.  This meeting only revved up my first grader's excitement!

Clare ate her breakfast on her "Today is My Special Day" plate.

And then the posing began!

Here is my best shot at all four....we didn't have a lot of time!

Then it was time to hit the road.  We walked Clare in, got her settled, and left her for the day.  She was excited, but a bit nervous. 

And finally, it was time to go get her!  When Clare was in preschool, I began the tradition of getting the girls a new book on the first day of school...and it has stuck. 

We went and got frozen yogurt, and the details of day started spilling out.  She said, "Now that was awesome!" She had only positive things to say, which I was thrilled to hear. I found it quite humorous when she told me how "teeny, tiny" the kindergarteners looked!  My how she's grown!

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Here Lately

 School starts next week and we are taking advantage of the last week of summer.  The girls all got hair cuts! We went to a different place this time, and they thought it was awesome that they got their hair washed.  :-)

Graham is a busy little dude.  He climbs on everything.

He is always quite proud of his climbing accomplishments.

 But with this face, who can be upset with him?


I have to brag on my girls for a minute.  Last week I wasn't feeling well one day.  My girls took such good care of me.  Clare made everyone lunch, cleaned up the kitchen, folded some laundry. and played with Graham.  Jane and Sydney asked me how I was doing all day long, and they were so patient with my less-than-par self.  It gave me hope that they will turn out to be kind, compassionate people.

Now, don't get me started on their behavior this week!!!!

Friday, August 17, 2012

Ladies Who Lunch

The girls and I had the fun opportunity today to have a birthday lunch for a friend at the American Girl Bistro.

So, the girls grabbed their babies, and we headed to lunch.  Jane has Izzy, Sydney is with Ellie and Clare brought Emma.

The dolls got to wear birthday hats and even got their own drinks.  

It was a fun outing, and I am glad we had the chance to participate.

Wednesday, August 15, 2012


Someone is having trouble dropping their morning nap.... 

 This was right before dinner.

He even dropped his bink....that's when you know he's out!

Friday, August 10, 2012

On Having a Big Family

Growing up, I never dreamed I would have four kids.  When Casey and I were dating, we discussed two, MAYBE three.  I grew up with one brother, and Casey isn't from a large family either.  We had Clare, and things were going as planned.  Then, we found out I was expecting twins, and we were instantly parents of three kids.  

After we had the girls, we decided to fully embrace the bigger family and have one more.  I am so glad we did.  Graham has been such a bright light in our family, and I can't imagine us without him. 

To some, four kids may not be a big family, but before I had any kids, four seemed like a ton.  Now, it is my normal.  To me, it is not just four kids, it's Clare, Jane, Sydney and Graham.  They are each more than just a number, they are an irreplaceable part of our family.

I love thinking about future holidays, and imagining our house full of our kids and their families, a house bustling with activitiy. Kelly Corrigan in The Middle Place, talking about big families, says:

He doesn't know how noise becomes music.  He doesn't know that five or six people can be moving in and out of the kitchen-doing dishes, wrapping leftovers, picking at the pie pan-and you can feel someone squeeze your shoulders and not even need to see who it because any one of them is welcome to give you a little encouraging rub and any one of them would.

I look forward to watching my kids grow up together, and I pray that they will always be close and always love the big family from which they came!

Sunday, August 5, 2012

Colorado 2012

We just returned from our annual Colorado trip.  We were joined by Nathan, Megan, and Brody.  We had a great week, and did so much fun stuff!

We rode horses,

 we rode 4-wheelers,

and we rode in a boat!

The kids wore their cowboy hats

 and we wore jackets!!!

We played in the hammock

and played with rocks.

We spent so much time, picnicing, reading, just being outdoors.  It was so nice to spend time out of the cabin!

Many thanks to LoLo and Pop for a fun week in the mountains!