Monday, September 12, 2011

Making Daddy Proud

With the kickoff of yet another NFL Season, Sophie has risen to the occasion to support her Daddy's team. Her elementary school held a "Back to Football" spirit day last week, and the kids were encouraged to show their team spirit by wearing their favorite team jersey. We have yet to purchase an appropriately sized jersey for Sophie, so she had to sport a very over sized Cowboys T-shirt with some leggings for the day.

There were lots of fun activities planned for the kids during the day, and her PE teacher just emailed me this awesome picture of her, which speaks to the fact that she pretty much puts her heart into everything she does. Go Cowboys!

Monday, August 22, 2011

Surprise! 40 is the New 30!

Eric turned 40 over the weekend, and with a lot of help from family and friends, we were able to pull off a very fun and celebratory surprise party at a local restaurant. This has been in the works for 3 months, and I am relieved that I no longer have to keep a secret and cover my tracks. Eric was truly surprised and had a wonderful fun-filled evening with local friends, old high school and college buddies, a few work colleagues and even our parents. To make it even better, he and I got to spend the night out in a hotel while his Mom babysat the kids.
After a lunch out with the family at Muss & Turner (above), we headed out on our own for a few errands and then to our hotel. Our plan was to meet up with a few other couples for a drink and some games at the very same place the party was to be held (which Eric coincidentally chose as the location to start our evening, feeding into my plan perfectly!). Meanwhile, my mom and Nick and 2 of Eric's dear friends from childhood were all on planes headed to the ATL. I couldn't even let the kids know that they would be seeing Grammy and Grandpa Nick, so they were also quite surprised when they showed up on our doorstep.
After a drink at the hotel bar with The Killimetts and The Jameses, we were on our way to Ormsby's, where The Dekels were camped out, waiting for guests to arrive and texting me the full report every few minutes. After arriving at Ormbsby's, Eric admits he became a little suspicious that something was up, but at that point, I had no worries. I knew he truly had no idea what (or who!) was hiding behind those curtains!

One of the best surprises of the evening was a visit from old friends Kristine and Dave Allyn (who are intent on letting everyone know that they are brother and sister - not husband and wife!). Eric has known these two all his life, and it was really special to have them join us.

Coincidentally, both of Eric's best friends from high school now live in the Atlanta area, though we don't get to see them nearly enough with our busy schedules. So it was another nice surprise to have Dave and Matt there to celebrate with us!
Most of you reading this know that Eric is always on top of everything safety related for the kids. Not long ago, Sophie coined the phrase "Danger Ranger" as his nickname, which naturally all of our friends think is hilarious. Eric received a monogrammed Danger Ranger T-shirt and hat from the Kings and Bergstroms. And thanks to the Seymours, we also have a Danger Ranger kit complete with a book and DVD on fire safety and all sorts of other potentially dangerous situations that the kids have already watched repeatedly. Jack has now been named our resident "Junior" Danger Ranger.

All in all, it was a GREAT night and I think it's safe to say that everyone had a lot of fun. But most importantly, Eric was so happy to be surrounded by so many loved ones, and he even told me this was the best secret I've ever kept :-). Here's hoping that 40 really is the new 30!!

Monday, August 15, 2011

Off to First Grade

In what seems like the blink of an eye, our little Sophie is officially a first grader! She was very excited to return to school, but not nearly as excited about the early wake up time (which was pretty brutal for Mommy and Daddy too). This year, she gets to return to the same classroom and will have the same teachers, only now she will sit on the other side of the room as a more experienced 6 year old that gets to guide the Kindergartners who are new to the "Mighty Multiage" class.

I remember exactly a year ago, how daunting it all seemed at first. While she was excited about school, she was certainly cautious about entering a classroom full of new faces. Instead, this year she bolted into the classroom last week at "sneak a peak" and proceeded to introduce herself to kindergartners and their families, welcoming them to the class. What a difference a year makes!

We are excited to see what this new year brings, and are confident that it will be a great one for Sophie!

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

VBS 2011: Anchored By God's Grace and Love

The kids had a wonderful week at Vacation Bible School this year. Sophie experienced her first year in the elementary program and Jack had a great time in the preschool class. It is hard to explain the awesomeness of this experience. More than 900 children and volunteers gathered each day at The Church of the Apostles for a fun and exciting week. If you click on the link, it should take you to a slideshow of the highlights of the week. Eric and I have volunteered in the past for the entire week, but this year, we decided to take a break and simply bring the kids. I must admit that in that final assembly, I was a little remorseful that I wasn't part if it this year. As much as I enjoyed (and needed) a little time for myself, I also know how special it is to be part of this experience. Next year we will be there again for sure!

The following pictures are from the final assembly held on the last day, where the kids perform several songs for their parents. Jack was particularly enthusiastic about it, this being his first time at the assembly. He was so into the music and the hand motions he had learned, and he willingly flaunted his cheesy smile each time he thought we were trying to take a picture. They wore these little sailor hats that were so adorable.

Sophie was enthusiastic in an entirely different way. The elementary classes are grouped in such a way that there are rising 1st graders through rising 5th graders all in the same class. So Sophie was the youngest and the idea is that the older kids help guide and lead the younger kids. This was perfect for Sophie, as she loves to hang out with older children and gets a little tired of trying to cater to Jack at home. Her cast drew even more attention of course, and Sophie was thrilled to be on the receiving end of lots of attention from the "big kids" that week!

We are so thankful for the outstanding children's ministry at our church, and are truly amazed out how much Sophie and Jack are learning and growing in their understanding of God's love for them!

Monday, June 20, 2011

Father's Day

Eric was treated to breakfast in bed for the first time ever this Father's Day! I can't take the credit - it was Sophie's idea. As expected, Eric thought it was the best thing ever and quickly propositioned that we make this a once a week ritual. Nice try, buddy - but I do promise to make this happen more often!

In lieu of gifts, both Sophie and Jack presented Eric with sweet hand made cards. I remember my mother encouraging me to make special cards for my own father when I was growing up, and now I see how precious and meaningful this is.

Later in the afternoon, we headed over to The Dekels for a barbecue with several families from the neighborhood. The kids enjoyed some backyard water fun and we had a great dinner that we all contributed to.

Father's Day is always a little bittersweet for me, as I no longer have the chance to tell my own Dad how much I appreciate him, but I know how proud he would be that I married a man who is truly an amazing father!