Saturday, February 25, 2017

When Mom and Dad Are Away

The original plan was for Lovie and Pops to watch the kids while we were gone. Then, the stomach bug struck. Lovie had it over the weekend and she was also taking care of Livy who had it. So, Pops volunteered to come to our house to stay with SG and Charlie! I think they had a great time with him! He texted us a steady stream of pictures while we were gone, which was good for my anxiety!

Saturday they hit the Kids' Workshop at Home Depot!

SG got the baby in my king cake!

They put on fashion shows for Pops!

Sarah Graves became an activist to stop hunger! This one was so funny to get! Pops cured that problem with dinner at Waffle House!

Char had a birthday party to go to and Pops made it happen.

There were more performances for Pops!

I think they had a really good time and made some good memories with Pops! I am so appreciative of both my parents going to all their efforts to be sure I had a fun birthday!

Celebrating My Birthday!

For the first time since Sarah Graves was born, we left the kids and went away overnight! The best part for me was that Aaron planned the whole thing and did a great job!
He picked Asheville as our destination and despite the cold weather, we had a fabulous time! We spent most of our time eating and browsing in shops!

This pot de creme and peanut butter cookie with sea salt was absolutely delicious! I fell in love with French Broad chocolates! The pot de creme had cinnamon and cayenne to make it sweet and spicy, so delicious!

We also tried out Vortex Doughnuts with all of their different takes on doughnuts like chocolate, maple, bacon flavor. 

Aaron took me to a Brazilian steakhouse for dinner and it was so delicious! Then, he had tickets for a romantic comedy play at the local community theater. It was funny and well done.

After the play, he took me to a dueling piano bar! This guy knows me well!

Yummy caramel martini for me!

The best part was coming home to these cuties who were so happy to see us! I got lots of hugs, kisses, and had happy birthday sung to me many times!

I felt so special and celebrated!

In addition to my get away, I also received a delicious king cake from Lex and Tim! So yummy and such a treat!

Singing Angel

Sarah Graves had another choir performance. She and her friends sing sweetly. It is a good reminder of how precious these children are - to us and to God.
You have to get warmed up!

Vested and ready! We brought our own cheering section with Lovie and Aunt Nay.

Quick pic with Lovie!

Singing and ringing so sweetly!

Afterwards we all went for a fun time playing at Burger King!

Friday, February 24, 2017

Playing Together

A lot of times the kids play together well. It is a joy to hear them so happy playing together and fills my heart with so much love and pride for them! As a parent, I live for those moments and they get me through the ones where I watch two people that I love more than anything try to hurt each other, scream at each other, and express genuine disdain for one another. Yep, very grateful for the moments when they are happy with one another.

This particular evening they were working side by side building with Legos. They were singing together and feeling truly joyful. Sarah Graves received a big set to build an American Girl dollhouse out of Legos and Charlie is often up for building a new structure with his. Such a lovely time for them just being themselves and enjoying life.

100th Day of 1st Grade

For the 100th day of first grade, the kids made shirts with 100 things on them. Sarah Graves picked pom pops for her shirt and she chose to use a shirt she tie dyed herself. She was a proud girl!
She was ecstatic to be using the hot glue gun on her own!

She proudly sported her shirt at school! So happy for her to feel pride in what she can do!


As the mom of a kid with long hair, I dreaded the possibility of lice! The school nurse called to say that she suspected SG had them. She was pretty insistent that we needed to use a professional service to get rid of them. I have heard about how resistant the lice are to many of the shampoos, so I made the appointment for us to get it checked out. 
The place is called Head Hunters of all things! I cracked up every time I said it! They are totally set for kids with Netflix for them to pick their show and a fridge full of juice boxes! My kids were happy enough to sit and have their hair checked for lice.

The lady started coming Sarah Graves' hair and immediately saw the lice. To be honest, it was gross to see her combing those bugs out of her hair!

Charlie didn't have any, which surprised me given how close they are.

No idea how to completely prevent getting them again, but I sure hope we don't!

Birthday Blessing

One of the sweetest things is how Chaplain Porter Cade does birthday blessings each week. She has a special prayer they all say to the birthday child, each child gets a card that was colored by another child at school, and they get hugs and kisses chocolates from Chaplain Porter Cade. It makes the kids feel so special and they really look forward to their special time!

Birthday Dinner

After her party, Charlie and I took a great nap while Aaron and SG explored her fun new gifts. Once we were rested, we were ready for a birthday dinner to continue celebrating our girl! We called the rest of the family and they were happy to come celebrate at Copeland's!

Our server brought out a dessert with a sparkler and the staff came out to sing! She was pretty pleased with it!

I sometimes can't believe my baby is seven years old now! In some ways I can't imagine she isn't my little baby who looked up at me with sweet eyes so helpless and adoring. In other ways, I see how capable and confident this big girl is. She likes to shop with me, offers advice on clothes and makeup, and is turning in to an amazing baker - she is becoming someone I can see myself being best friends with. I am a lucky momma!

Happy 7th Birthday, Sarah Graves!

Always excited to celebrate her birthday, Sarah Graves picked an American Girl themed party! She envisioned it with all the kids in pjs and serving her favorite breakfast, waffles and bacon!

These cuties were so excited to show off their matching pjs for them and their dolls! Lovie made shirts for them and their dolls to all match to mark the special day.

So happy that Lovie and Pops could celebrate with us.

Aaron was the head cook making 4 pounds of bacon and more than 20 waffles for the girls! We did not have leftovers either!

Lovie and Pops outdid themselves on this adorable cake that put Sarah Graves on her own American Girl doll box!

Rainbow Bobby and Elfa Claire came back to celebrate the birthday! They ended up staying a few days after Charlie knocked them down and they had to recover! We aren't sure if Santa will send them back since they were treated rough!

The elves decorated SG's chair for her party! A fun surprise!
I had fun making SG her special birthday cookies. We did stars, hearts, and some special ones with her monogram.

We saw the idea for this fun centerpiece on Pinterest. We used boxes from American Girl things and added some fun things to shoutout her special birthday.
My girl loves roses and these purple pink ones were just right for her.

She put together the goodie bags for her friends. We included a lipgloss, some chocolates, and candy jewelry for each girl.

Sarah Graves was really excited about the crafts for the party. She picked to make a "cake" for her dolls using various colored sponges, pieces of felt, and pom pops!

The kids enjoyed putting together their pieces of cake. 

We played American Girl doll bingo and I don't know if the kids loved eating the hershey kiss markers or winning the prize more! 

Pops gave SG a little bingo strategy talk.

Love those sweet faces!

I found inspiration on Pinterest to make this American Girl doll box photo prop. It was a favorite for the kids!

The fruit kabobs were a big hit with Olivia!

Sarah Graves had a really good time with her friends!

She was very excited to see this candle. She and her friends had a great time watching it open and delighted at the song it played!
I love seeing that big smile on her! It makes all the hard work worth it!

Another craft we did was making tutus for the dolls!

Lovie and these cutie girls!

All of the party guests! The weather was terrible with big thunderstorms and nonstop downpour all morning, which made it especially nice that so many girls could come!

After the friends left, it was time to open presents!
Aunt Barbara and Uncle Less delighted her with a nail painting set and a paint your own tea set!

Aunt Lex and Uncle Tim gave her a fun American Girl doll scrapbook set!

Maw Maw gave her some cute new boots!

Granny and Ger Ger sent this awesome Belle and Beast dollhouse!

She was given a lot of other awesome gifts too. She had fun with lots of new Barbies and doll things!