Sunday, June 27, 2010

No Shirt Required

Jack and Sophie had separate birthday parties at the same yesterday so Eric and I decided to divide and conquer. While Sophie desperately wanted Eric to accompany her to Sophie King's princess ballet party, Eric opted for some guy time with Jack at Kate's party, where there was a slew of outdoor water activities and an authentic spread of homemade Chinese food. Kate was adopted from China about a year ago, and both she and her 3 year old brother Sam were in Jack's preschool class last year.

Jack has always been fond of both Kate and Sam, and had been looking forward to this party for several days. The Seabolts did not disappoint, and a tired Jack bolted through the doors of our house full of excitement, immediately requesting that I schedule a playdate with Sam and Kate soon. He was also extremely fixated on when he'd be able to take his shirt off "just like Sam". Eric quickly explained that Sam was shirtless throughout the birthday party because of the water games, and Jack had to keep his shirt on to protect him from the sun.

When I went to check on Jack before I went to bed, I found a very tired, shirtless Jack who had taken it upon himself to remove his pajama top before falling asleep, so he could be "just like Sam."

Monday, June 21, 2010


Father's Day is always bittersweet for me. I can't help but reflect and reminisce on the times I shared with my Dad, who I wish was still here to be part of my life, enjoy my children and offer the little snippets of wisdom that only fathers can do.

On the other hand, I celebrate the fact that I have been blessed with an amazing husband who is also an amazing father. Admittedly, I'm sometimes jealous that Eric's their first pick when it comes to just about anything. Yet, I'm delighted by the mutual affection he shares with Sophie and Jack, and I'm even learning to accept that fact that often times, in the words of our good friend Jeff James, "Daddy does it different".

I love that Eric isn't afraid to jump in and truly engage in the lives of our children, and that even after a long day at work, he seems to never run out of patience, energy and love. I am so thankful to be sharing this journey with him.

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Summer Begins

The kids and I had an opportunity to join The Seymours for some fun at The Pryors' house on Lake Martin for a quick overnight before Memorial Day Weekend. We packed a whole lot of fun into just over 24 hours, and the kids enjoyed many "firsts". First speed boat ride, first time swimming in a lake, sleeping in bunk beds, and Sophie even caught her first fish!

Jack didn't quite know what hit him as we sat in the front of the boat for a speedy ride soon after we arrived. As soon as my grip on him loosened up a bit, he would immediately pull my arms tightly around him, saying "Don't let go Mommy!" He was also very concerned about everyone else's safety, making sure we were all seated properly and holding on tightly.

I wasn't quite sure what to expect of them embarking on this new experience, but much to my surprise, both kids were pretty fearless when it came time to swim in the lake, and everything else that came along with it. They truly had a blast!

Truth be told, I was relieved that Eric wasn't around to worry about all of the potential "what if's" that crossed our path. In particular, watching Jen supervising all 6 kids while trying to hook worms onto their fishing poles stands out!

After a full afternoon of boating and lunch literally "in" the lake, the kids enjoyed time at the house with bubbles galore, and a tasty dinner that was topped off with s'mores at the firepit. This, all while poor Liz was dealing with a flat tire - not a first for her, but it meant that I had to man the grill which was most definitely a first for me!

The next morning Liz and I were serenaded by our 4 kids (who shared a room with 2 bunk beds) at the wee hour of 5:45 Alabama time. Despite having gone to be well after 9pm the night before, they were ready to go. Jack even declared somewhat happily that he had woken up at one point to find himself on the floor and he got right back in the bed.

Luckily Jen's cousin Zac, who is a recent med school grad and just so happens to love kids, was not too annoyed that his slumber on the air mattress downstairs came to a screeching halt, and he graciously poured cereal for the kids...which was the first of about 3 breakfasts that morning before it was time to actually start the day. We enjoyed more time on the boat and in the water. Sophie loved jumping off the back of the boat into the lake while Jack was a little more cautious in the more mirky water where we ended up. At one point I caught him talking to himself, saying, "Oh my gosh, my feet are so dirty...Oh my gosh".

It's amazing how such a short little get away can create an experience and memory that will last a lifetime. I will never forget this first trip to "The Lake Party", as Jack likes to call it. And Jennifer, hopefully if you're reading this you will know that we don't want it to be our last! Thanks for a great time!!