Thursday, May 30, 2013

mother's day

Mother's Day... these two precious things are the reason I get to celebrate being a mommy.  Sometimes when I look at them, I just get this overwhelming feeling of love, like I cannot believe they are actually mine.  That so many years went by trying to create them, so much difficulty and stress, sadness and faith.  
Faith is what brought them here.  I was determined not to give up.  I knew deep down my dream, above anything else, was to be a mother.  And God made it a reality in His own time.  I just had to be patient.
And God has blessed me more than I could have ever hoped for or imagined.
(This was their Mother's Day gift to me... being sweet to each other!  ha!)
We had the most special day.  It was beautiful weather, and my mom and Jim came over to grill.
There is not much that I love more than eating outside on our deck when it is beautiful outside.  We ate my favorite food- hamburgers, baked beans, and fruit.  I could live on it!
Last year we pulled her high chair out on the deck!  This year she was eating up at the table in a big chair with us!  Sweet girl!  And she loves grilled hot dogs too!
It was a little difficult to get a good picture of everyone!  Ha!  The kids were crazy to be outside- we had been cooped up for so long all winter!  They just wanted to play!
Kerigan refused to sit in her baby swing.  She had to be on the big girl swing too!  Even though she kept falling off!  Ha!
She just loves being a big girl!  And she definitely has a mind of her own!
This picture just makes me laugh.  Sometimes I have to show the "outtakes" so you don't think life is all perfect all the time!  Far from it!  ha!  This is what it was like trying to get a picture of them most of the day!  One would look and be smiling, the other was acting crazy, then the next picture the other one was smiling perfect!  Ha!
We finally went inside and took a break to open presents.  This got a little better!  But Kerigan was not taking her hand out of her shirt!  (I won't post all the outtakes from this shot, but they are pretty funny too!)
We got my mom a photo collage, which she has been wanting to go in a frame she has at home.  It needed updated so I made her a new one with recent pictures.
I have to give another shout out to my mom.  I know most of you who read this know what an amazing person she is.  But I just have to say it again.  We are beyond blessed to have her.  The kids adore her.  I have loved watching her be a grandmother.  I'm so happy I was able to give her that gift.  She needed grandchildren, the role suits her amazingly well!  Thanks for all you do for us, mom and Ga Ga!
Seriously.  They were being SO sweet to each other!  I think daddy must have had a talk with them!  Ha!
Andrew's eyes were half shut, but I still loved this picture!
I bought myself a nice little Mother's Day present.  I had been wanting a new strap for my camera and I LOVE it so much!  Bless Craig's heart, he tries, but ultimately, he really doesn't know what to get me!  So I just make it easy for him!  Ha!
Andrew gave me his sweet little note he made at school, which cracked me up!
I love that I'm 78 and weigh 6 pounds!  Ha!  My favorite is that he said I love decorations.  I just laughed and laughed... it's true!  I think it's so funny that he thought of that.
Besides eating outside, my other favorite thing this time of year is having a campfire and making smores!
It worked out perfectly because I didn't even have to make dessert!
Kerigan's first s'more experience.  She wasn't too thrilled with the fire, but she loved the end result!
Andrew just loves to roast marshmallows and set them on fire!  We give all the burnt ones to daddy.  He finally made Andrew stop because he lost count how many he'd eaten!  ha!

And once daddy and Papa had everything all cleaned up, the kids had baths and were tucked into bed, Craig and I settled in to watch the 3 hour season finale of our favorite show!  Best.Mothers.Day.Ever!

Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us.
Ephesians 3:20

Monday, May 27, 2013

spring phone dump #2

I should finally be caught up with phone pics after this... still have Mother's Day and our mini vacation we took last weekend, but I'm getting there!
We've been finding things to do to pass the time during our house showings.  One weekend we had several so we went to Ga Ga's.  It was one of the first nice days we had so we loved getting to be outside with no coats!  The kids played "golf" in Ga Ga's yard!
I played on this slide when I was a little girl!  It's such a strange feeling watching my kids at the same place!
Just chillin in daddy's shades!
Love this picture of my boys!
Andrew loves collecting sticks and making a "campfire."  He wanted me to have a campfire with him!  Ha!

I loved this!  Kerigan and Ga Ga took a nap!
It's so nice having Ga Ga live so close!  She has been so helpful keeping the kids for us for showings and other outings!  Sometimes if we have a showing in the evening and then the next morning, she'll take them overnight which helps so much so the house stays clean in between!  Thanks mom!
After that we had another showing so we headed to Craig's brother's house for some evening fun and a grill out!
The kids eating ice cream sandwiches!  They were a hit!

Enjoying Wendy's frosty's on the night of another showing.  (Oh, and by the way, with all these showings I'm sure you're wondering if we're having any luck selling??  Um, no.  Sore subject.  Ha!  I am getting so frustrated and tired of trying to keep up with the house and the kids messes.  We've dropped price twice.  Apparently no one cares that we need to be in our new place July 1.  Ugh!)
One weekend we met some heart friends at Sky Zone!  It was so much fun!  
She got some air under that one!  Ha!  She loved it!

These are our sweet heart friends, Emily and her sister, Grace, who also has a CHD.  We have known them for several years (since Grace and Andrew both have a CHD we met through our heart group when they were really young).  And I don't think it's a coincidence that we happen to be moving to the same town that they live!  Craig's job he applied for happened to be there and we talked about how funny it would be if that actually happened, and it DID!  We are so grateful to already know an awesome family in town and Mandy (their mama!) has already given me so many tips and insider info I need to know about moving to a new place I'm completely unfamiliar with!  I'd be lost without her!
A new place opened up near us...Scratch cupcakes.  Enough said.  Heavenly!
Enjoying our first baked pancake (thank you Pinterest!)
It was to die for!
Silly girl!  And she loves to brush her teeth!
In honor of the last 6 days of school... I had to chuckle at this note one of my students gave me.  "You cool, fun and you've teached me a lot."  Ha!  Apparently I needed to add some more grammar lessons!

Bring on summer!

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

spring phone dump #1

So it's a sign that I'm majorly behind in updating when there are pictures from my phone dated back in March!  I had to get this posted because we have done so much since all these were taken and I'm finding myself going crazy with lack of time and getting behind.  Not just in blogging, but in life in general.  School can't be over soon enough 9 days so I can have more time to get things accomplished and get our house packed and hopefully SOLD!!  So here we go... most random update ever.
Andrew attended a birthday party for his buddy Hudson at one of our favorite establishments... Cherry Berry frozen yogurt!
It was a great place to have a party!  Load up your frozen yogurt any way you'd like and not worry about messing up your house!  Ha!
I just want to remember this.  My good friend, John, that I taught with the past four years at my other school (who I miss dearly and who reminded me of my dad!) always drew Snoopy on his board like this with little messages for his students in the mornings.  Since I've changed buildings, I don't see him much anymore.  We still keep in touch through emails and things, but he comes to meetings at my school a few times a year but my meetings are in another building so we always miss each other.  He was always leaving me messages and notes, and one day I walked in and found this on my board!  It was so funny.  The next morning my class thought I wrote it about myself- Ha!  We have kept Snoopy up the rest of the year and I write new things for my students each day.  I love the reminder of the fun we always had (it's the FUN part of teaching that's missing!  But that's an update for another time!)
Little Miss has been showing lots of interest in the potty and has been staying dry overnight.  I just can't believe it!  
She's always carrying something around the house- a purse, her babies, shoes, etc.
For Earth Day Andrew's class watched The Lorax and he came home with this mustache!  I thought it was so cute!  He's saying "I speak for the trees!"
Chillin and watching the Lorax again!  Kerigan loves to sit up on the couch with her Bubba!
She also likes to sit with her daddy and sometimes fall asleep!  She gets sleepy before it's her naptime on the weekends and before we know it, she'll crash on the couch.
Daddy and Andrew took an afternoon nap one day too!  This is rare for Andrew!
I love this- watching TV and Kerigan is decked out in my shoes and bracelet!  Ha!  Like I said, the girl has to accessorize whether she's in jammies or not!
I feel like they are always laying like this!  Usually it's in the morning before we leave for school and I'm rushing around trying to get us all ready (but of course I can always take time for a picture!  Ha!)
Another morning before school- so sweet!  Watching Mickey Mouse Clubhouse.  Kerigan is obsessed with it.  Andrew likes it okay, but he'd rather watch Ninja Turtles.  He is always sweet and lets her watch Mickey though.  They take turns, and Kerigan will always say "MY turn!"  Ha!
Yes, St Patty's Day was forever ago, but I'm that behind people!  We set a trap for the leprechauns.  Andrew was so excited!
When we got back home, the leprechaun had come!  He brought Andrew and Kerigan a couple of surprises.  Andrew did not stop talking about it!  He loved it!  He kept looking all over for the leprechaun. 
These two like to play on the computer.  Kerigan watches for a while, but pretty soon she wants to participate and Andrew gets so annoyed!  Ha!  Her face just says it all!
Can you say... stinker??
One day I was at the computer when there was tons of laundry to be put away thrown all over our bed (yes, I promise one of these days I'm going to take pictures of our house in disarray, because everyone thinks it's immaculate all the time!  Those just tend to be the times I take pictures!)  But see exhibit A in the background of this photo!  Ha!  Anyway, he comes running around the corner in Kerigan's shirt!  I about died laughing.  Mom's BFF!  Ha!
Eating at a favorite restaurant- Hickory Park.  Andrew likes to pick out little candies and put in his bag on the way out and they have this neat seating area with a TV playing old fashioned cartoons.  The kids love it!  (Ignore the winter coats... we are wearing shorts now!)

Spring decided to show up a little late but we made our way to the park a few times before the snow hit again!  (Yep, we had snow in May.  That's Iowa, folks!)
Kerigan loves her little car!
She is getting independent on the play equipment now, which is so nice!
Andrew loves to ride his new Angry Birds bike he got for Christmas from Papa.  I think this was the first time we had it out this season.
People keep asking me about how our house hunting/selling is going.  I've been quiet, not for any other reason besides the fact I am trying to keep my head above water with keeping the house clean and getting frustrated that we've had no offers.  But, we do have an offer accepted on our future house, and we all love it!  This was taken the night we made our offer at the little park that is near our home.  We picked up a picnic supper (yes, I consider Wendy's a picnic!  Ha!) and ate it at the park.  There is a pond and walking trail right in our backyard.  It is a perfect setting and we can't wait to move!  Just waiting for a buyer!
The playground is really nice- the kids both loved it!

So only in Iowa would you be wearing shorts and tank tops one day (it was low 80's), and literally 2 days later... you get this.  Back to winter coats.  (Do you all see why I'm going nuts!?  Ha!)  I just got the winter stuff packed away and needed it back out again.  Seriously Mother Nature??  I told Andrew to look surprised- this isn't exactly what I had in mind- Ha!
We got about 3 inches!  It was May 3.  Just for documentation purposes.  It only lasted a day, but still.  Definitely a spring to remember.
The wetsuits arrived for our trip to the Great Wolf Lodge (which we just returned from!)  The kids were practicing wearing them, and Kerigan wouldn't take hers off!  I think she would have slept in it if I had let her!

And this was just a sweet moment of sibling love.  They did it all on their own- no prompting from me. Yes Kerigan has no pants on.  But she's got some super cute new sparkly shoes she was trying on!

Believe it or not... I have another phone update coming soon.  I couldn't fit everything in to this one!  I promise I'll be caught up soon!

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