Thursday, July 26, 2012

Sunshine all week long!

Hot, hot, hot...that is how our weather has been this last 10 days or so.  The sunshine feels great (in small doses).  

 Graduate school is progressing well.  It's very time consuming, and I feel like I always have a book in my hand, or am listening to a podcast on my phone.  It's a few weeks into the semester and now my nice neat organized study area looks like a paper factory exploded all over the floor.  

Megan had another skin tag become infected.  After some further questioning, it was revealed that wiggles her skin tags when trying to fall asleep.  We spent even more time up at the peds office this week. 

We like the soccer room because of the cool chair. 

Her arm is looking better now and we are hoping to get in with a pediatric dermatologist in the next couple of weeks to look at her arm and her spot on her spine. 

The kids got the official team swimsuits this week at swim team practice.  Daniel got a swimsuit, even though he doesn't swim with the team. 

He's quite the swimmer, just not ready for the team. 

Keith talked me into going to the Golden Corral for dinner one night last week.  I had never been there, and the experience of having so many options for dinner was fun. 

The chocolate fountain was a big hit. 

Daniel's fondue strawberry. 

We've been spending time in the pool a few times a day.  Even Lilly got in on the action this week.  She's not a very strong swimmer, so we have to hold her when she's in the pool. 

Joshua's Statue of Liberty impression. 

With the first day of school being right around the corner, I realized we've all done great with reading, but writing is something we haven't really been emphasizing.  I pulled out some old magazines and the kids cut out some heads, bodies and props and made people collages.  Then they wrote stories about who their main character is and what is he/she doing. 

Cheer season has started and Megan is ready to go!  She's cheering for the Pop Warner team of Lake Brantley Patriots.  I hope it ends up being a good experience for her. She is super-excited about it!

Early this morning, Keith and the kids and I went to the park to drive remote control cars. 

It was a lot of fun. 

I've taken a little break from studying to work on getting things ready for Joshua's upcoming birthday party....

Monday, July 16, 2012

We love our busy weekends!

We had an awesomely busy weekend.

Good food, great friends, fun was absolutely wonderful.

Our front lawn is thrilled with the amount of rain we've been getting lately.  However, the pool girl (me) is working overtime on keeping the pool clean and well balanced.  It's a pain to take care of, but oh man, it is so worth having a back yard swimming pool.  

Saturday Keith volunteered in the Children's Welcome Center at church, and I met up with some friends to sit in the sanctuary while the kids were in Sabbath School.  To be honest, we've both been struggling a bit with the change in pastor at the church, and I think I've mentioned before that I'm sure it's nothing personal, just a different way of communicating.  I know that so much of my issue is that I got used to a softer, more compassionate speaker and now we have a very passionate and very loud pastor.  His services are well-written, but somehow there's something in the delivery that seems to hit a nerve with me.  This week a different person spoke and I really enjoyed the service. 

After church, we had Shandra and Juan and the boys over for lunch and swimming before the rain came.  It was a really nice time and all the kids played so well together. 

Sunday afternoon, my sister, Pam and her family came over for lunch and swimming.  Again, we got rained on.  I actually stood at the grill with an umbrella finishing cooking lunch! 

Evidently, Bruce was a little excited about the food!

Today, one of Joshua's friends came over and spent most of the afternoon with us.  I hope they are in the same classroom again next year, but we won't know that for another couple of weeks. 

Joshua is getting excited about his upcoming birthday.  It's hard to believe that he's going to be in the double digits.  Wow...seems like just yesterday that he was a big chubby cheeked baby.


A couple of weeks ago we met up with our friends and went for pizza and jumping.  We really liked the pizza at Flippers and it's pretty kid-friendly, so it works great for a crowd such as ours. 

After eating, we sat around for a while and chatted then drove over to Rebounderz so the kids could play.

 Here they are getting the safety briefing.  

About 10 minutes into jumping, they were ready for a break.  

So fun...the lights go out every hour or so and everything glows.  Notice that we ladies moved over close to the kids since the overhead announcer said the lights were going to go out, we didn't want any freak-outs.  All the kids handled it well and enjoyed seeing everything glow in the blacklights. 

Because everyone worked off their pizza, we stopped for some gelato (for the grown ups) and ice cream (for the kids).  Yum!

Friday, July 6, 2012

June Wrap-Up

When I came back from Kentucky, we seemed to have settled into a nice flow of being busy, then relaxing, then busy again, then relaxing again.  It's tough to keep balance between wanting to be out and active, and not wanting to be too scheduled.  I think this summer we have really hit our stride with an activity that all three have been enjoying.  But first...Daniel lost his very first tooth one night a few weeks ago.  I'm so thankful that Keith works really hard to include me in things when I can't be home.  This time I was at work and got a text from him with the picture below and a message to alert the tooth fairy. 

We are trying a new activity this summer.  The kids are all swimming at the community pool down the street from our house.  They are on the Altamonte Springs Stingrays swim team.  
 The first week of practice was the week that Joshua was away at camp, so just Megan and Daniel were present.
We have since pulled Daniel off the team and scaled back a little bit with him.  He'll be taking more lessons to work on specific strokes.  Funny how he can swim with no problems if he can do his own thing, but to have to follow a specific stroke, well, it gets a little frightening with him getting tired in the middle of the pool. Our awesome coaches suggested which class would benefit him the most, and he'll start that in a couple of weeks.

When Joshua returned from camp, he fit right in on the swim team.  He's one of the fastest in his age group, likely because he's such a fish at home in the pool.  He listens well to his coaches.

 Megan is doing great as well.  This is such a funny age where some kids are so much bigger than others, but they are all the same age.  She just seems so tiny compared to some of the kids in her group.  But she is fierce and gives it her 100%.

 Keith or I attend every practice, and Grandma and Grandpa Holloway have each made it out to see the kids, too. There will be one swim meet this year and I'm hoping that gets scheduled soon so that I can work my schedule around it.  If not, no fear...Super Dad can handle it.

While Joshua was away at camp, Megan got invited to a friend's birthday party at the roller skating rink.  She had never roller skated before and really, really, really wanted to go.  We had missed another birthday party recently because of scheduling issues (again, just trying to scale back a bit from being too scheduled), so Keith loaded up Daniel and Megan and off they went.  Keith rented skates for himself and Daniel and they had fun while waiting for the party to wrap up. 

Meanwhile, up at Camp Kulaqua, Joshua had CHORES to do!  I love it!  I thought it was so funny that he couldn't wait to tell me that he helped keep his cabin clean.  I'm not sure how all the details come together, but I know he made Honor Cabin and his group made pillow cases. 

 It is a long drive home from Camp Kulaqua, so we stopped for some fresh squeezed orange juice and some snacks about mid-way.  Then Joshua slept for the rest of the ride home.

I had to work on Father's Day, so we celebrated the day before.  Keith and I cleaned up the pool deck area (there were awful winds and rains the day before) and we grilled and hung out with the kids. 

Megan in the shirt I brought her back from my trip to Frontier Nursing University. 

It rained, and rained, and rained for what felt like a week (give or take a few sunny moments), because of a storm off the coast of Florida.  

 We busied ourselves during the rain with reading, movies and naps. 

 Joshua, showing off his new shirt from camp. 

Daddy and Megan watching a movie.  Last week's movie night movie was Despicable Me, which was funny and adorable.  This week we watched We Bought a Zoo which was darling, but if I recall correctly had a couple of bad words in it. 

Keith's birthday was the Saturday after Father's Day.  Poor guy, all of his holidays fall in the same week.  We invited the Figueroa's over for some grilling and some swimming.  Of course, it rained almost all day and I was getting a little worried, then some sunshine started poking through. 

Saturday morning, the kids all sang Happy Birthday to Daddy in bed, and Megan read him the Happy Birthday texts that he got.  Clearly, he's paying close attention.  We got off to a very late start with breakfast and decided that since we were all home together on the weekend for the first time in many weeks, we had a leisurely breakfast and played games most of the morning.

 Daniel and I played with the tanagrams.  

 While Megan and Joshua worked on making science. They were adding baking powder to vinegar to blow balloons up. The end result was pretty cool.  It was one of the experiments in Joshua's science experiment book, and for Christmas, I had given him a box full of a bunch of different things he could use for his experiments.

 This past week, the kids begged us to take them to get new squirters for the pool, but somehow we gave in and got Nerf Guns.  We set up some targets and have been having a blast.

I'm not sure how I managed to cut Keith out of this picture.  This is what we do a couple of evenings a is so fun.  Every once in a while, our neighbors will join us. There's nothing like an after dinner swim and a fire pit.

Megan and I took a late-night trip up to Night Light Pediatrics because she had a huge weeping bump on the back of her leg.  While it was actively weeping, I wanted a culture and she was feeling a little warm with a low grade fever, so after the wonderful doctor there made a few phone calls, Megan ended up with two shots, and a prescription for antibiotics.  It turns out her wound isn't growing anything too terribly bad, and we still aren't sure what caused it.  It was gross and huge (as big as my thumb), and we kept her home for the most part while it was healing.  It is practically all back to normal now.

 Of course, there's nothing sadder than having to be out of the pool when the sun finally decides to break through.  Poor thing...
 We did let her play her DS probably way too much.

 She seems to be feeling all back to herself now.  Here she is in the cool seat that Grandma and Grandpa Holloway got her for her birthday way back in March.

 Another sweet picture that Keith sent me to say goodnight one night when I was stuck at work late.

 All of that rain was good for our lawn.  Last summer we put in a new lawn and this year it has really taken off.

 We've been playing a lot of board games.  Monopoly and Blokus are our two favorites.

 Megan and her sad pouty lip. Yep, that's pizza on a paper guessed it, I'm working. 

The kids and Keith went over to his parents' house to celebrate the 4th of July.  They had a great time and came home all tuckered out.