Friday, August 18, 2017

Friday Favorites: Catching Up Edition... Sort Of

Yay for Friday!! I want to attempt to keep blogging somewhat regularly so even though I don't have tons of pictures I'm going to go with what I have and hopefully catch up a little. 

*My dad sent me this picture a couple of weeks ago from their little outing to Dauset Trails. The boys and I have gone every summer since we moved back but this year with the busyness of going back to work and setting up a classroom, we didn't have a chance to go. So Granna and Papa took the grands during pre-planning. This picture is just the sweetest! I mean melt my heart!! Love these babies so!!

*Layton's very 1st day of school was Monday, July 31st and this is the picture I got of him before his big day. He's attending preschool half a day each day and Terrell takes him every morning before heading to work and my mom and mother-in-law pick him up every day. He wasn't super sure about it at first but he seems to really love it now. YAY. His favorite things about school so far appear to be painting, the "Home Living" center, and turning into a dinosaur and chasing girls at recess. Haha! 
*The same day as Layton's 1st day of school and mine and the boys (and AnAn's!) 2nd day of school, my mom had all of us over and cooked us a huge and delicious dinner. It was so nice not having to worry about feeding my crew on the 2nd day of school... which was possibly more exhausting than the 1st! I didn't take a single picture because EXHAUSTION, but it was a huge favorite!

*Later that week on Friday night (of the first week of school), we celebrated Frankie's birthday together with a steak dinner! And an oh so yummy ice cream cake!! It was a fun celebration with the fam. =)

*Terrell and I took the boys to CFA for supper on a Saturday night a couple of weeks ago and we all had a blast. =) The boys typically play on the playground while we order and get everyone's food and drinks situated at our table. Then they come eat and we usually trade in our kids meals toys for ice cream, and then we let them play again before we leave. Well after enjoying the most delicious ice cream known to man, the boys played and Terrell and I just sat and watched a hilarious video we came across on FB. For like 11 minutes! We laughed so hard and had the best "date" while the boys played. We even decided to take a selfie of ourselves while we watched. Haha!! We're dorks. 

*Last Friday night we celebrated Terrell's upcoming birthday with his parents. We grilled out and they even made us homemade ice cream! I don't have a picture but we had a great night celebrating the best son, husband, and dad ever!

*We made some final decisions about a pool this summer. Something that's been in the plans and in the works for exactly 3 years!! We are soooo excited! The first thing we're doing is replacing our deck with a brand new one, plus adding a lower level that will step out onto the patio area by the pool. It's going to be a long term project but should be finished in plenty of time. Terrell and his dad are doing most of the work themselves and it's been pretty cool to watch.  

*And the boys have been fascinated and so impressed. They've even started some "building" projects themselves around the house. =)

*Earlier this week while we were having supper the boys started comparing and discussing their favorite foods.... which eventually led to a game of this or that? Hamburgers or hotdogs? Pancakes or waffles? Ice cream or popsicles? Skittles or sour patches? Fruit Loops or Apple Jacks? The game went on and on throughout dinner, clean up, and all the way to bedtime! We've played before but this time was a record breaker. And so fun! So I made a picture. =)

This weekend we have lots of plans to celebrate Terrell's birthday, do some planning for Austin's upcoming birthday, and attend our niece Allison's birthday party. =) Plus we're hoping for some extra rest. I am TIRED. Phew. Week 3 of school is almost in the books and other than beginning of the school year exhaustion, things are going great! Happy Friday!!

Wednesday, August 16, 2017

Layton at 3.5

On Saturday our baby turned 3 and a half! In some ways 3.5 seems so big when you're talking about your BABY. I mean, how can our littlest man be half way to 4?!?! It just doesn't seem possible! But in other ways, 3.5 still seems itty bitty and oh so little. He is growing up fast but I know I'll always see him as my baby. The same goes for his big brothers too. One day they'll all be bigger than me, but as their mama they will always be my baby boys. 

Here's a little peek at life with Layton at 3.5....

*You sleep the latest out of all the brothers in the house. You will sleep until 8:00 or later on the weekends lots of times while Garrison and Austin barely make it to 7:30. 

*Your bedtime is around 8:00 on school nights (but you aren't asleep until a little closer to 8:30) and around 7:30-7:45 on the weekends. Most weekends are easier for earlier bedtimes and we're usually so worn out from the week that we don't mind heading to bed early!

*You LOVE bread. Hahaha! I can't even tell you the number of times you've told us you want bread for your meal. I'm afraid you get it from your mama. BUT, we never give you just bread. Ha! In fact, lots of our meals don't even include bread. Much to your disappointment. =)

*Your favorite things right now are superheros and power rangers. You love playing "fight the bad guys" or power rangers with your brothers. It's currently your favorite hobby!

*You still enjoy being rocked, sitting in our laps, us rubbing your back, and being close to mama and daddy. Especially mama. =) I'm so thankful you're still our little cuddle bug!

*You have done great adjusting to preschool so far and mama working full time. I'm very proud of how quickly you accepted our new routine and the way you've become a pro at it!

*You love your grandparents, aunts, uncles, and cousins and ask about them, talk about them, or "call" them on your phone frequently. =)

*Your most favorite thing is playing outside. Unfortunately it has been brutally hot and humid lately and we don't get out much. But I wouldn't be at all surprised if you chose a career that allowed you to work outside. You LOVE "cutting the grass", "building the deck", and working in the yard. Outside is your favorite place to be and the weather doesn't seem to phase you one bit.

*You are super excited to play soccer and are counting down to your first practice!

*You have the cutest imagination and "tend" (pretend) all the time. Dressing up as a superhero or power ranger is a regular occurrence for you.

*You still nap every afternoon, you have a big sweet tooth, carbs are your fave, you love the water, your big brothers and cousin Piper are your best friends, you keep us laughing all the time, you don't like the dark or thunderstorms, your favorite food is Mexican, and you bring us joy every single day. 
You are half way to 4 and we are loving watching you grow!! Happy half Birthday Layton Thomas! We love you and are soo blessed you are ours!!

Thursday, August 10, 2017

Back to School

We are all in full blown back to school mode over here! Phew. It's exhausting and definitely takes some getting used to after our laid back summer days. But we're all doing it and all having a pretty great start! 

I thought I jot down the highlights and little things I want to remember from our first 10 or so days...

*Teaching PreK is super fun and super CRAZY. Some days I laugh and some days I cry. Haha. Thankfully I haven't had many tears. The beginning of the year is just nuts trying to keep up with 22 little 4 year olds who may or may not want to be at school and who may or may not struggle with following directions. Ha! Plus it's just exhausting. Like really, really exhausting. This teacher-mama is TIRED. I love my school babies already and we are slowly but surely getting the hang of things at big school.......but it's been a wild adventure for sure. 

*Garrison LOVES his new school. (In our county the Primary School consists of grades PreK through 2nd and the Elementary School consists of grades 3rd-5th. So this year Garrison moved to the Elementary School.) Going to a "new" school and facing the unknown is a little intimidating. 3rd grade in itself is a little intimidating! But he absolutely loves his teachers and is having the best experience so far!! There is more independence, things are more laid back, his teachers are awesome, and the Activity teachers/classes (Art, Music, PE, Computer) are his favorite. It has been such a blessing and answered prayer for us because we were all nervous! I'm really excited about this year for him. 

*Austin is transitioning well to Kindergarten! The first few days he didn't really want to go and even shed some tears one day at lunch when he saw me because he just wanted to go home and be with me. Bless him. He loves his mama and is a for sure home-body. =) Thankfully he really loves his teachers and is doing awesome. I would even go so far to say he is loving school most days. He's just a pro at almost everything Kindergarten (so far). That September birthday and being the oldest is a big time advantage. I don't love that there are 3 years/grades between the big boys in school but his birthday is to his benefit without a doubt. I'm so thankful he'll always be the oldest and have that extra advantage. 

*Layton has done great with preschool so far! I think it has been so good for him to be with peers and classmates and teachers for half a day each day. He has been home with me full time for most of his life and last year started staying with his Granna and Nana quite a bit, so this experience for him is a great one! He was apprehensive and unsure the first couple of days but since then has really blossomed. I know he'll learn a ton and be ready for big school next year. And something about him going to "school" each morning just like us makes my mama heart feel better about working full time this year (the year before he starts big school). 

*Terrell has been amazing. He has taken over all of our laundry, most of our errands, and has really gone above and beyond to make this transition easier on me. He knew this job opportunity was really important to our family and a huge step for me.... and all of us really. I haven't worked full time (other than 10 weeks back in the Spring) in 8 YEARS. And that was before having 3 busy little boys! So this change is a BIG one. And I'm so, SO thankful for him stepping up and being so wonderful about the added responsibilities and extra "stuff" he's having to take on. We've always been great at tag teaming and I hope we can keep up our stellar teamwork. =)

*The big boys have started soccer and Layton's first practice is coming up soon! I was extremely nervous about signing up all 3 boys for soccer this Fall because this is another first for us. And the timing is scary with me going back to the classroom full time. I mean we've never experienced 3 playing at once. #pulledin3differentdirections #we'reoutnumbered #thankfulforgrandparents But he is SO excited that I know it will be worth it. He's been watching his big brothers play sports for as long as he can remember and he's thrilled that it's finally his turn. I hope he loves it as much as he thinks he is. =)

*Our parents have been a huge help to us so far and I'm honestly not sure what we'd do without them. Last year we needed them to help with Layton once I started subbing, but this year is sort of a all hands on deck year. Layton has to be picked up from school each day at 11:30, some mornings we'll need someone to take Garrison to school, some afternoons we'll need the big boys to be picked up from school due to me having meetings or trainings at other locations, I'll need childcare for teacher work days, etc. So we are extremely blessed with parents who not only can help but also want to help. Thankfully next year the boys and I will all be on the same schedule and we want be nearly as "needy." 

The start to this school year has been an exhausting whirlwind, but overall things have been pretty awesome. I'm adjusting, the boys are adjusting, and hopefully things will only get better. I know we'll all have days of not wanting to go, or days of being completely "over" our schedule. (I've already had some moments of feeling overwhelmed and ready for a break!) But I think this transition year for us has the potential to be a really good one and this job opportunity will really bless our family in ways we haven't experienced before. God's plans are good and we will continue to trust in Him and give Him the glory. 

Happy Friday Eve! =)