What a week!

Well its starting to really feel like schools started... It only took me 4 full weeks to get into the swing of things! I ended up becoming room mom for both girls classes and we're gearing up for the fall carnival already... The weather still feels like Summer so its kinda hard to think Fall, But I am SO ready for those Fall temps!

The hubby got me started cycling so I've been cycling my butt all over the place while Ava is at preschool... Hoping to lift that butt back up... Its gonna be a process for sure! As part of the "New & Improved Me" or as I like to say "The Best Me I Can Be" (Sounding like a self help book title here) I have also been walking, hiking, and just trying to stay "active"... Mission officially accomplished! I've been busier these last few weeks than I can ever remember, But its a great journey Im on.

Caitlin is playing soccer so we have soccer practice Monday, Wednesday, & Thursday... Michael actually had 3 of his 4 days off this week so we took Ava hiking Thursday at Cades Cove up to Abrahm's Falls... And we (Well the hubby... Probably better that way) saw a bear! I was busy with a half naked toddler trying to teach her how to pee outside (Imagining that its easier with a boy) when hubby heard something... Looked up on the ridge 20 feet above us and saw a bear poke his head up! We scooped up the naked toddler walked down the trail a little more and then re-dressed said toddler. That was an adventure to say the least. 

We've got some house guests this weekend... 4 legged rodent kind... Isabel's class pet gerbils are staying with us. We dropped off our new guests and have them shut securely in the girls room (Objective: Don't let the class pets get eaten by one of our pets) and they (the girls & gerbils) seem to be enjoying their stay. We took the girls up to ride some rides last night at Dollywood (those season passes have really been a lot of fun!) There were NO lines so we got our fill in 2 hours!
Caitlin had her first soccer game this morning and had to be on the field at 7:40 (Why did we sign up for this again?). She has a big heart... But we're gonna need to work on the sport itself a little or a lot! She was her teams biggest cheerleader... Which was sweet... But like I said we're gonna have to work on some things if she wants to stay in this sport... Which she says she wants to... So we will see.
SO my week was full and my cup runeth over... Even in those moments when my attitude seemed to runeth over too... I'm a work in progress... Now onto a girls night out tonight and God's house in the morning. Feeling blessed all around and ready to see what this next week will bring.



Cover Girl Tru Blend

Ok... So this is not something I would normally post about.... But Im going to give my two cents anyways. I had some Cover Girl coupons and Walgreens was having a buy 1 get 1 half off. I needed some new foundation and wasn't really happy with what I was using. I've tried a lot of different brands (including Cover Girl) from the drug store to the department store and never found "the one". Can there be "one" when your talking makeup? Anyways.... I've been using the Cover Girl TruBlend foundation and pressed powder for about two weeks and so far I am blown away by how much I love it! Its light weight, no greasy, and it really does blend in. Cover girl hit a home run on this one if you ask me, but hey thats just my two cents!

I spy... The Natural History Museum?

This past weekend was my father in laws birthday... SO the girls and I flew up to D.C. to surprise him! Pretty sure mission was accomplished and the birthday boy was truly surprised. My sister in law and niece were in D.C. from Denver too so it was a family get together minus the hubby.... He had to work :(
Day 1 we headed to the Spy museum... Here is my official review:

This was a moderate priced activity $18for Adults $15 for children 5-11 Seniors receive a $1 discount making their ticket $17. If you visit Mt. Vernon save your ticket stubs... They will give you 50% off admission to the Spy Museum! I had extremely high hopes for the museum. Our children are no stranger to them and generally LOVE all the hands on activities.... Unfortunately this was not one of those kinds of museums. The atmosphere and decor are fun and exciting.... There are a lot of interactive spots throughout but they are for much older kids.... As in preteens or older.  Lots of reading, memorizing, video watching! Overall it was ok and if I would've had the time to really look at everything, I might have learned something!

Day 2

We headed back to a place we have been time and time before The Natural History Museum. Its A-MAZ-ING! It never gets old. The girls love the dinosaur bones and all the pretty minerals. They darted from one exhibit to the next their eyes getting wider and wider at each one... They were truly enamoured by everything they saw and touched.

All in all we had a great weekend full of family, learning and fun! 


The 3rd birdie is spreading her wings...

Today was Ava Max's first day of preschool. I thought I was a lot more prepared.... Emotionally.... I wasn't! Nope not all! Not one iota.... Someone help me find a brick to put on this kids head to keep her little.... Ok not really... Well maybe?

Well last night was the "Tea Party" aka open house. Just Ava and I went. The older two stayed home with dad. She wasn't quite sure what to think of it all. We toured her classroom and I stared intently at the parents with infants in their pumpkin seats reminising in my mind about how that was the way Ava had last gotten around Wesley. She was only 11 months the last time we had been there (When Isabel was in readiness) and now here we were for Ava's turn at Wesley... It seemed so unreal. We continued on our tour checking out our new classroom and new friends! Yay for friends  (We have a class of 10 of which 7 are girls!) We met our music teacher, art teacher, ordered our tote bag and t-shirt, met our T.A. (at the cookie & punch table) Grabbed some green punch and a dixie cup of chocolate animal crackers and she was D.O.N.E. It was time to leave so we did. I spent the latter part of the evening wondering how her first day would go.... Prayed over her and her first day and everything else that I could think of to pray over about the first day... Thought some more... Worried a lot more... And PRAYED some more! It was an exhausting night for my brain.

D day as I call it arrived this morning. From the moment she opened her eyes all she did is asked the same question "Is it time to go to school?"
We finished our normal routine and took the "Big" girls to school and headed back home again the little voice in the backseat... "Now I go to school?" Not yet kiddo... Soon... Very soon. This type of conversation continued through her getting dressed (In her panda shirt of course !) Me taking a shower, getting dressed, while I fixed my hair, put on my make up and checked my email.  FINALLY it was time to go and she was ready!

We made it out the front door and then it was PICTURE TIME! Yay - Right?
Yeah... Not so much for the three year old.... BUT she was a trooper and I got some cute shots.

We arrived at school as she talked and talked about seeing her friend Jojo (who is in her class too) and wanted to know when she'd see her. Wesley always has the Wesley (Panda) flag hanging... Perfect picture spot... and we did! We finally made it to her classroom... I was terrified she would cling to my leg, cry, and never want her momma to leave her. Yeah... Not so much! She bounced into the room, let me take a few picts of her and then it was off to baby doll land and it was momma who?

As I left Wesley my heart was happy and overflowing.  I have three beautiful, smart, well rounded girls and they've all been able to have the Wesley experience. Im excited for this year and I KNOW Ava is going to have a wonderful time... And momma just might have a wonderful time too! :)


On my way now.. I am... I am...

So in the beginning one of the reasons I wanted to blog was to find my "true" self... Or at least to figure out how to be the best me I can be. Sounds easy enough... If only it were that simple. I am setting my goals now... I know there will be days I will fall short and days I will soar high but I am committed! I learned a lot this summer about myself....                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    
1. I am a lot stronger than I ever thought I was.
2. Its important to be true to who I am and not to conform to who everyone else wants me to be.
3. (So I already knew this one...) Think before you speak... Think hard... And think twice!
4. My children are a good look into who I am....
5. God is ready to work in me if Ill just let Him.
6. Speak with love... Your message gets through better!
So now it's all about the continuation of this journey... It's a winding path that I believe God is leading me down. It looks bright and full of hope.


Back to school...

I can't believe today marks the 3rd day of school already! Caitlin and Isabel have jumped in with both feet into 4th and 2nd grade... Im starting to feel my age.... That can't be good can it? We hit the jackpot with teachers this year and couldn't be happier! All in all I think it is going to be an awesome year! I've already volunteered myself in Isabel's class as "Room Mom" (Since I was room mom in Caitlin's last year). Ava will be starting preschool  next week and I am going to have 9 hours a week of "kid free" time! What will I do with myself? We met Ava's preschool teacher today at our home. She seems nice and I think Ava is going to have a great year too! She has been so excited this summer about the prospect of attending school... So much so that it has been a big part of potty training, because they have to be potty trained to attend this preschool. WDS has been a big part of our children's lives... Ava will follow in her sisters footsteps by attending. I was not looking forward to school starting back (who doesn't love the freedom of summer?) but now that I've met all of the girls teachers... My cup runneth over with joy! Now if I can just get everyone back into a routine again...

Lions and Tigers and Bears OH My!

Whew! What a summer! We bounced from Virginia to Colorado to Texas to Oklahoma! We spent the 4th of July in Virginia with my in-laws. The girls had a ball visiting Mount Vernon, The National Zoo and Williamsburg. Of course there's always fun to be had when your with the grandparents!

After spending some time in Virginia we headed West to Colorado. We only spent a few days but crammed as much fun as you can into those few days! We took all the kids including my younger siblings down to Canyon City to the Royal Gorge Bridge, stopped by The Garden of the Gods, watched my sister compete in a swim meet, and got a little R&R by Grandma's pool! Michael and I also celebrated our 12th wedding anniversary and went back to the restaurant where we had our first date! All in all it was a short but fun visit!

Michael had to leave and come back home for work... So the girls and I jetted down to Dallas to spend a couple of days with Aunt Courtney and her girls! The six girls always have SO much fun together and don't get to play together often enough so it was great to have that special time together. We took the girls to a sandbox/splash pad, swam in the pool, shopped and built some new friends at Build a Bear, Visited Legoland, and enjoyed some good 'ole fashioned visiting!

The last stop of our trip was to Oklahoma to visit my dad and grandparents. The girls were so excited to go fishing in the boat... Let me tell ya I have some little fishermans... Or is that fisherwomans? We spent many afternoons with my grandparents what a blessing it is that my girls have not only grandparents but GREAT grandparents! We fried up some fish we caught one night and had a  good 'ole fish fry... Soul food! We went out to Papa G's deer feeder and filled it with corn... Who knew that could be exciting! Oklahoma is in a serious drought and EVERYTHING is dry, dead and crunches under your feet. The extreme heat of 105+ degrees each day isn't helping either. Ponds are drying up and farmers are having to carry water to their cows and horses. Crops are failing and it is putting a hurting on many families that depend on those crops to feed their livestock through the winter. They are in desperate need of rain and lots of it. The grasshoppers were prolific and the girls had fun catching them to use as fish bait! Walters was holding its annual rodeo and pow wow. The girls LOVED both! I think we better keep a close eye on Isabel or she'll be riding bulls! The child has NO fear of them! We headed out to Sultan park and watched the beautiful dances and the costumes of the Comanche. All in all our summer was full of family and fun!