Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Donuts with Daddy

I was so very thankful that our vacation to Mexico didn't interfere with "Donuts with Daddy" day at preschool.  It is such a special morning for the children and Kennedy was so excited for Daddy to come to school with her.  

Hard to contain her excitement!

A side by side picture like this really shows how much Kennedy looks like her daddy

First activity of the day was to cut out and decorate ties for one another...

Kyle's had a rainbow and a flower and a few other little pictures (not totally distinguishable to me :).
Kennedy's said "I love Dad"
Miss Tricia took a picture of Kennedy and Daddy and then put it into a frame that Kennedy had made.  It's now sitting on our entry way table and it makes me smile each time I see it!

Kennedy's name was chosen to be the flag holder

Donut time!

Somebody loves donuts!
I know I've said it dozens of times, but I do so love our little preschool.  These special little days that they have throughout the year are so important to the children.  Kennedy had been counting down the days and was thrilled to have Kyle at school with her.  
It was a very special day indeed!

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

a little bit of life ~ February edition

Trying to catch up on the blog before we take off for vacation...knowing that when we come home, I'll probably have 1,000 pictures to sort through and several posts that will need to be written.
One of the things that I like best about keeping this blog is that I can add odd pictures and little stories, preserving memories that otherwise would have been forgotten.
When uploading these last few photos, I couldn't help but laugh - my Kennedy is certainly a character!  Also, feeling so blessed...life is not always easy, some days seem down right impossible, but overall I am blessed beyond measure and it's important to be reminded of that!

Kennedy read a "Fancy Nancy" book wherein Nancy dressed up in an "explorer extraordinaire" outfit.  Of course, Kennedy has many mysteries to solve, so she had to find the perfect outfit.  The funniest bit is that she chose all of these things the night before and laid them out on her chair.  I (foolishly) thought she'd forget all about it come morning, but she didn't.  She was dressed in record time and was ready to solve some mysteries!

During a play date, Kennedy and Kaitlin were playing quietly in Kennedy's room.  I didn't think much of it, they are girls after all.  Figured they were coloring or crafting or playing with dolls.  Sort of.  Kennedy had decided to dress herself up - I'm not even sure how she managed to put all of these layers on! 

Meanwhile, Kaitlin stayed perfectly well dressed!
Both enjoyed some play time in my bath tub ~ silly girls!

We headed over to Carrie's on Tuesday night and had a wonderful night together.  We just don't get to see them all enough, and I enjoyed every minute of the evening.  They treated us to a wonderful Japanese dinner which we all loved! 
Ethan is just the cutest, sweetest, funniest little guy ~ I could definitely have another one if I could have one like Ethan, oh he's a doll for sure!

I wanted to snap a few pictures before we left...

of course they had to be goofy too!

Ethan brought a book over to Carter and asked him to read it...Carter happily obliged.  I think he got a kick out of being the "big" kid.  Ethan was so funny, I think he was a little surprised that Carter knew all the words!

He sat and listened to the entire book as Carter read...

So loved our time together, thank you for a fantastic night, friends!

Grass Valley Showcase ~ 2013

Last week, Carter's school hosted their winter showcase.  It's a time for parents to come into the classroom, see what the children have been working on throughout the year and then watch a little performance in the cafeteria.  I do enjoy these type of events - it's fun to see families together and to celebrate the school year so far.
Since I volunteer in Carter's class each week, there wasn't a ton for him to show us, but he did show Kyle his desk, we got to see some of his writing and crafts and meet some parents of his classmates.
The art program at Grass Valley is run by parent volunteers.  Each month a new artist is highlighted, some history given (usually in the form of a story) and then the children get to create with different media.  Carter has studied Monet and Georgia O'Keefe.  This month he worked with paint and plaster and created this little masterpiece.  I'll be honest and say this is probably his best work so far.  Often he just swirls the colors together and it doesn't resemble much.  I was really proud of his effort.

Carter and his teacher, Mrs. Lange
This is the first photo that I've taken of his teacher this entire year.
Carter really likes her - she is kind and the kids have fun in her classroom.

The first graders performed an island inspired song, "Calypso"
Carter was all business

Mr. Serious up there
During the song, he (not so kindly) reprimanded a boy behind him for singing when they were just supposed to be clapping.  
We had a little talk about tolerance and kindness

The whole first grade ending their performance with enthusiasm!

Overall a fun night where Carter got to show us his school.

Saturday, March 2, 2013

Happy Heart Day! ~ Valentine's Day ~ 2013

I will be the first to admit, I'm a sucker for hearts, love and all other cheesy Valentine's decorations.  It wasn't always this way...I remember not really liking Valentine's Day, feeling it was kind of a made up holiday that put a lot of pressure on people to buy the perfect gift or give the perfect card.  The day has definitely taken on a new meaning since we've had kids.  It's less about the romantic dinner out and more about fun little things that we can do to show our enormous love for Carter and Kennedy.
I had a lot of fun thinking of special little things to do during the month.
We started out on February 1st, with these cute little mailboxes...
one for each, sitting on the entry way table.

My plan had been to put little gifts and love notes in them each night and then the kids would have something fun to open in the morning.  Unfortunately, after the first couple of days, the gifts were greeted with expectation instead of appreciation.  Also, it was really hard to find fun, small things for Carter.  Girls are easy - lip gloss, jewelry for dress up, stickers, etc.  I confess that the presents didn't always fit in the mailboxes. 
I think next year I will stick to writing little notes only ~ more about the love and less about the "stuff".

I had found several different Valentine ideas on Pinterest and then had the kids choose which one they wanted to make for their classmates.  Carter chose to give mini cereal boxes with a cute tag.
We set to work putting together 25 special treats!
He loved the glue gun.

We also had to decorate a box for Carter to bring into school for his Valentine's party.
I found some letter stickers and he picked out all blue for his name and then added some heart stickers too.  He hot glued (again) some festive ribbon around the lid.
I thought it turned out great!

Here are the kids' finished Valentine's
I love the idea of making them instead of buying them at the store.  They both seemed so excited about passing them out to their friends and really took ownership of putting them together.

Since Kennedy's class is so small, I thought it would be okay to make 2 Valentine's ~ this idea was just too cute to pass up.  Wonder if any of her little friends ate them?

As they slept, I covered their doors in heart shaped love notes.
They love this tradition and Carter even asked a few times if I would be doing it again.
All of the hearts said different things:
"I love your laugh"
"I love the way you say girls"
"You are a great reader!"
"You have beautiful eyes"
"I love to watch you swim"
"I love to read with you"

I attempted to make homemade Nutella pop tarts for a special Valentine's Day breakfast.  I found the recipe on Pinterest and they actually seemed rather simple.  And they were.  Kind of.  They would have been simple on a Saturday morning when we had nothing else to do.  I having a special holiday mid-week really threw me off.  It was a mad dash to get out of the door on time.
BUT, they were cute and tasted delicious!

be still my heart
my loves

I helped in Kennedy's classroom during her party and couldn't resist this cute little prop for a photo
hugs and kisses, indeed!

Lyla and Kennedy

Playing in the gym

A special bouncy house was put up as a treat for the kids ~ can you tell that Kennedy loved it?

darling little Valentines

sweet gumball class

Then it was off to Carter's class to help with his party
talk about sugar over load!  I think each and every valentine came with some sort of candy plus they had ice cream sundaes for a special treat!  

Kennedy was happy to have her friend, Ainsley there to play with ~ such cute girls!

oh my boy, getting so big but still so darn cute! 
I love that sweet smile of yours, Carter!

controlled chaos
I was surprised that when we left the classroom was rather tidy and orderly.  There was so much stuff at each desk - no on gives just little cards anymore.

We ended our day with a delicious dinner - although we were making a mad dash to finish up and get Kennedy to her swim lessons.  None the less, it was so good, heart shaped crab cakes that everyone loved a great salad.  I wish so much I could have enjoyed the nice bottle of wine that Kyle got me as a gift, but I had to work that night so I made do with water.  We'll plan a special evening and enjoy it together.
How very blessed I am to have so much love in my life!