Monday, July 21, 2014

Early June

It was difficult to say goodbye to Maya's first grade teacher, Mrs. Corp. She was such a wonderful teacher and did a great job with a big group of rowdy kids. M didn't really connect with her until later in the year. Mrs. Corp was always on top of everything and was a great communicator. I loved the weekly emails and newsletters stating all of the things the kids had been working on. It was difficult to get into the classroom to volunteer because of the younger kiddos at home, but I always felt connected to her classroom.

If you're wondering about the Abby shirts -- there was a little girl who was battling cancer at Maya's school. The kids were encouraged to wear red, or to wear the Abby shirt if they had one, on certain spirit days throughout the year. Sadly we found out last week that Abby had passed away after fighting for 2 years. So sad.

It's so hard to believe another school year has passed. I've been looking at Maya's baby pictures a lot lately. Cora's 2nd birthday is coming up and I wanted to see if she and Maya looked similar at this age. I have so many good memories of when it was just "the 3 of us". My house was SPOTLESS in all of the pictures and it was so much easier to keep up on that kind of stuff. Life was much simpler. I love watching the videos of her talking in her own little language and remembering how she used to say certain words. She has grown up into a beautiful young lady. She is looking forward to turning 8 and being baptized this fall. She's a real character and a great addition to our family!

The day after school got out Nick's dad, step mom, and Papa came out for a visit! We were so excited to see them. They chose a wonderful weekend to be here: Maya's recital, Papa's birthday, Father's Day. We did a lot of celebrating! We went to the zoo on June 13th, Papa's birthday. It was kind of a chilly morning but warmed up nicely as the day went on. The kids were really well behaved and we all enjoyed seeing the animals. That night we had Jet's Pizza.....always a request from family members when they visit! Then cheesecake for Papa's dessert and presents. The next day we took it easy in the morning then had Maya's recital at 2:30pm. She did a great job! I was so proud of her and surprised that she didn't seem nervous or scared at all. I had butterflies for her the entire time she was on stage. After the recital we went to Carrabba's Italian Grill for dinner. We left Josh and Cora at home for the recital and dinner and I'm so glad we did! It was a nice, relaxing dinner and memorable for Maya on her special day. Gramma Pat gave her a gift for doing well in the recital. It was a pretty little necklace with a star on it and an American Girl Doll chapter book about a ballerina. So thoughtful!

The next day we had breakfast together at the hotel restaurant then took a drive up to Island Park to show them the lake. We didn't pack suits but got our feet wet and played in the sand a bit, and of course took more pictures. That night we had a nice dinner of BBQ steak, potatoes, and salad...and more cheesecake for dessert.

Cora's signature "grumpy" face.

The guys opening up their Father's Day gifts. We had an awesome weekend! The kids got along for the most part and warmed up to everyone quickly, especially Cora with Gramma Pat. I loved it!

Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Josh's graduation from preschool

This year the preschool decided to spread out the ceremonies over a week so the school and parking lot wouldn't be so crowded. The kids came into the gym and sang a song then they each went on a little stage to receive their certificate. The teacher said a few nice things about each of the kids and read the kids' answers to a few questions they had asked them. Here were Josh's answers:
Favorite food: apples
Favorite thing to do at school: play at the block station
When I grow up: I want to go to work

The last question made us giggle. This kid is determined to do anything BUT work. He's happy playing legos. That's it. It's even been difficult to get him outside to play. Later he told me, "Mom, I don't really want to go to work when I'm a big dad, I just had to tell Mrs. Yessler something."

I can't believe he's done with school. I'm really going to miss having him around next fall when he starts Kindergarten. I think Cora will definitley miss having her buddy around -- she follows him around the house all day. They are so sweet together. I'm so proud of how much he has learned this year. Not just academically, but he has really grown socially and is becoming such a fun little kid. He stands up for himself more and has more confidence in himself.

This is the face he makes when he is nervous or embarrassed. He bites his bottom lip and stares blankly ahead. He did it throughout the entire ceremony! Maya kept saying, "why is he doing that weird face? What is wrong with him?" Haha.

Good job little buddy!

May, 2014

We took a trip to the zoo once it FINALLY warmed up here in Michigan. It was a beautiful day and we enjoyed seeing the animals and being together. I wasn't sure how Cora would respond to the animals. She was so tiny last year and she really doesn't care much for cats and dogs, etc. She didn't seem too scared. We love having a zoo membership and go often. There is a lot of walking in between animals so sometimes we hit up one side of the zoo and leave after a few hours because everyone is tired. Then we see the other side on our next visit. Works out great!

Near the end of the month the first grade/second grade classes put on a nice music performance of all the songs they had worked on over the year. It was fun to see her perform the songs she's been singing around the house for so long. She's standing next to her buddy, Sasha.

Maya really enjoyed being a Daisy in the Girl Scouts this year. Every other Wednesday after school she would stay with her troop until 5:30pm. She learned a lot and had fun with her friends. These pictures were taken on her last night. All of the parents were invited to come and watch as the girls did a flag ceremony and earned their final awards.

The best part of the night, according to Maya...FOOD

I attended a Relief Society activity in May that was all about gardening. It got me motivated to start a garden this year and we met my goal of getting everything set up before June 1st. Nick made me the garden box as a Mother's Day gift and I love it! I bought way too many veggie plants though and we had to use the space next to the box. The garden looks a lot different now. Everything has grown so much! I will add a new picture with my June update.

Maya made a beautiful sign for our garden. She included all of the veggies, herbs, and fruit that we have growing this season. I love how excited she is about it. Every day she runs outside to check on things and to see if anything new has grown. Josh doesn't seem to care much. He says he is only interested in the cucumbers and pumpkins because everything else is so "gwoss" or "bowing". Little stinker.

I'm sure there are events that I'm missing but that's basically May in a nutshell.