Friday, August 31, 2012


Everyone in our house is super pumped for UGA football and can't wait to kick off the season tomorrow.  We had to wear our red and black today to support our team.  Handley and Harper have been "calling the Dawgs" all morning. :-)  GOOOO  DAWGS!!!!

Thursday, August 30, 2012

Almost through week one

Well, we've almost made it through week one of school.  We are all exhausted.  Mostly me, but I think the girls are ready for the weekend, too.  I knew we would be busy and I knew it would take some adjusting to since our summer was completely unscheduled and laid-back.  I think I'm most tired because I don't have the girls home to entertain Hudson like the usually do, so he's stuck with me and he's a full-time job and requires full-time attention.  He is sweet as can be, but all sorts of busy and messy, messy messy!  My friends with boys keep telling me he's just "boy" and boy is he ever.  He's also full of personality.  Everywhere we go he is waving and telling people "hey"and loves getting a response from them.  Another new game he does is toss his food off his tray and as soon as I get him down from his seat he crawls around and starts eating it off the ground.  Maybe I should just put it on the floor to get him to actually eat.

I'm feeling extremely thankful that he has always been pretty flexible as far as his nap schedule goes because now that we are not getting home until around 2:30 and then usually having to head right back out for some of the girls' activities, he has had to grab a nap when he can.  We're still tweaking our schedule and I think it might take a few weeks to get adjusted to it all, but we are on our way.

I think the transition has been a fantastic one for the girls and they can't say enough wonderful things about their classes, their teachers, and everything they are learning at school.  They've woken up early each day, ready to go.  One morning we were dressed, fed, and ready to go.  When Handley said, "Let's go to school!" I checked the clock and realized we had an hour before it was time to leave.  I doubt that will go on all year, but it's been a nice change to not be rushing out the door.

This morning, just before leaving for school. 
Harper was extremely proud to bring home her artwork that she created this week.  Her teachers made a special point to tell me that she is a really sweet girl in their class, follows directions really well, and is a joy to have in their class.  That made my day!  While we were waiting on Handley to get out of school this afternoon, Hudson was napping and she and I got some one-on-one time.  She told me all about the centers in her class and the new friends she is meeting.  Handley has been telling me all kinds of details about her Kindergarten class and she has been thrilled to go each day.  Tomorrow will wrap up her last day of the week and I couldn't be more proud of our big Kindergartner!

Monday, August 27, 2012

First day of school!

After seeing all of their friends start school over the past few weeks, they were excited it was finally their turn.  Both Handley and Harper were thrilled about the first day of school today!

Driving to school I had nervous and excited butterflies in my stomach for them.  I just hoped they would both have an excellent first day.  When we got there, Handley wanted to wait outside for some of her friends.  We ran into Addyson (who is in the other Kindergarten class) and also Harper's friend, Parker.

Harper seemed a little nervous walking to class, but went right in and put her folder and lunchbox away like Mrs. Nina told her to.  Handley was thrilled to reach her classroom, quickly found her cubby to put her lunch in, gave me and Hudson a quick hug, and was off to begin her day.

Lunch box notes on their napkins
When I picked Harper up at 1:00, she seemed happy and told me all about her day.  She was thrilled that she got to play on the "big" playground since she is 3 now and also that she had fun playing with friends (even though she didn't know some of their names) and that she got to paint.  She was a little confused as to why we couldn't pick up Handley right away.  Handley doesn't get out until 2:00, so I took Harper to get a little treat to kill the time.  She choose a smoothie from "Old McDonalds" (McDonalds).  Handley seemed to have a great day too.  She talked non-stop about all the things they did today and kept telling me over and over how much she liked school and how fun Kindergarten was.  I'm thrilled that they both had a great day and I am really excited about this school year for them!

Wednesday, August 22, 2012


This morning was Sneak-a-Peek at school and the girls got to visit their new classrooms and meet their teachers.  We went to Handley's classroom first.  Her sweet friend from her Pre-K class, Grace, was there and is going to be in Handley's class again this year.  They immediately picked up right where they left off and got busy playing in the kitchen area.

Handley's teachers are Mrs. O'Kelley and Mrs. Evans.  Mrs. O'Kelley was actually her cheerleading coach last year so we already know her.  She is fantastic and is sweet as can be.  I just know Handley is going to have a wonderful year in her class.  The room is bright, full of learning centers and activities, and we both got so excited seeing her name at her seat, on the word wall, and on bulletin boards.

I'm feeling really great about our decision to keep her at the pre-school for Kindergarten. There are only 9 kids in her class, with two teachers, so you can just imagine all the one-on-one attention she will get.  I've seen all of my friends' pictures and posts on facebook about their kids heading off to Kindergarten at a big school and riding the bus.  Today, Handley told me she couldn't wait to ride the bus.  I know if I were sending her to a big school I would probably be a lot more emotional than I am about her starting Kindergarten, but I have one more year to deal with the fact that she is growing up so fast.

Harper's teachers are Mrs. Nina and Mrs. Gloria.  Handley had these teachers for her 3-year class and they are both wonderful and extremely experienced.  They compliment each other perfectly and I'm excited for all they will teach Harper this year.  She ran right in and gave them both hugs, so I hope that is a good sign.  She was acting a little nervous while we were in the classroom, but I'm sure when she heads back on Monday she will be ready.  Her best pal, Parker, is going to be her class, so I know those two will help each other out through the first few days of figuring out the new classroom and teachers.

Monday, August 20, 2012

Handley's 1st Tennis Lesson

Today was the beginning of our hectic weeks.  I knew that going in to this fall, we would be extremely busy, but seeing how excited and happy the girls are doing their activities, makes it all worth it.  Today Handley had her very first tennis lesson AND cheerleading.  The only reason she is doing both on the same day, is because cheerleading is a very short season and it won't be all year.  

She was excited, but nervous about tennis.  She kept asking me who her coach would be, if there would be anyone there she knew, and she was nervous about not being able to play it very well.  I assured her that was the whole reason she was there was to learn how to play and that her coach would teach her all she needed to know.  

She absolutely LOVED it.  It's probably too soon to say if this is going to be her one "thing" she really hones in on, but she had a blast today and had a huge smile on her face the entire time.  There are two coaches and they keep the kids going the entire hour. I don't think they stopped running around once, and when Handley came off the courts her face was bright red and her water bottle was bone dry.  The coaches keep it really fun for the kids with all sorts of games, are excellent with this age group and kept them laughing, all while teaching them some skills, too.

I need to talk to the coach before Handley's next lesson though.  When she was with one coach she used her left hand and did really well, but when she went to the other coach she was using her right hand and it seemed awkward for her.  She is left-handed, so I think it's just a matter of figuring out which is her dominant side for tennis.  

After tennis we made our way to cheerleading practice and had an hour to kill so we had a picnic in the back of the car.

Handley had fun at cheerleading and was excited to get her uniform tonight (including the pom-poms and megaphone).  She has several friends on her squad, so it should be a fun season for her, too.

Sweet Harper had fun playing with some of the other kids and was so supportive of her big sister during her activities today.  Hudson, on the other hand, was not.  If I thought he was a handful last week during gymnastics, today he stepped it up about 10 notches.  I've completely given up on him staying off the ground and even if it's concrete he is crawling on, it doesn't slow him down.  However, I came home feeling like I'd just run a marathon after trying to chase him down and keep him out of harms way.  I remember a few years ago there was a mom at the pre-school who had a little boy about Hudson's age.  Every time I saw her she was chasing after her crawling baby, would bring him back kicking and screaming and he'd just take off again.  I remember feeling sorry for her because she always seemed so frazzled and exhausted.  Well, let's just fast forward a few years and I am in the same position doing the exact same thing.  I wouldn't trade it for anything and I'm thrilled to get to experience my all-boy little guy, but he's going to wear me out!  

Friday, August 17, 2012

Handley's gymnastics and Hudson's first haircut

This afternoon we had Handley's first gymnastics class.  Even though her class wasn't until 3:15, she wore her leotard  She was so excited.  When we arrived at the gym she got to see her friend, Addyson, for a few minutes before her class began.  Addyson was just finishing up so I was able to get a quick picture of all the girls.

Handley told me she had such a great time and that gymnastics was really fun!  She loved her coach and told me all about the special show they get to do at the end of the year and how they will wear special leotards.  She also said her coach told them that whoever does a really good job gets a gold medal.  Since we are just coming off watching the Olympics, that is all it took to motivate and excite Handley.  She told me she was going to try really, really hard to do her best.

If anyone has any suggestions of how to entertain a 13 month old little boy who is only interested in crawling onto the gym floor every 30 seconds when the gate opens because little gymnasts are coming in and out to start their classes, get water, use the rest room, etc. I'd love to hear them.  I spent the entire 45 minutes of Handley's class chasing Hudson towards the gate and just as he would get to it I'd scoop him up.  He was so determined to get out there and was just really mad at me for not letting him. He would arch his back, scream, and nothing would make him happy. I was armed with snacks, toys, books, my phone, you name it.  He wanted none of it.  I'm going to try one of the Baby Einstein movies on the iPad next week, but I can already tell it's going to be a long year with him while the girls do their thing.

Today I did something I've been thinking about for a while...Hudson got his very first haircut!  I've been wanting to do it for about two months now, but Robby kept asking me to hold off.  I was torn.  As his hair was growing longer in the back it occasionally would curl (occasionally being the key word).  When we were at the lake or the pool or if he was outside playing and all sweaty, it would curl up in the back and look so cute.  However, the majority of the time it was straight.  It didn't look so bad when he was wearing jon-jons, but when he had on a collared shirt it would hang over the back and looked just like a baby mullet.  My sweet friend, Tricia, was coming over today to do mine and Jen's hair so I decided that I'd have her do the honors.  Hudson sat in my lap and was turning his head every 2 seconds to keep up with all the other kids, but thankfully she is a professional and was somehow able to keep up with him.  A HUGE thanks to Tricia! 



(This after shot was taken at gymnastics and you can see him trying to get through the gate I was talking about earlier!)  

 It's not very noticeable, and not super short...just a little trim, which is exactly what I wanted. 

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Harper's Fall Activities

This week I've seen lots of friends post their kids' first day of school pictures and each time I see one I'm happy that I still have a week and a 1/2 with my girls at home.  Our fall schedule is going to be very hectic, but thankfully we are getting to ease into it.  This week began Harper's gymnastics and dance class.  She  was so excited about gymnastics yesterday that after breakfast she disappeared and next thing I knew she was standing in front of me saying "ta-da" in her leotard ready to go.  Her friends, Jake and Reece are taking the class with her, so she was thrilled to see them.  She also asked if I would text their mom to see how Reece was going to wear her hair because Harper wanted to match.

She did a great job at gymnastics and didn't stop moving once!  They keep them busy and active the whole time.  She followed directions great and did really well at everything they asked her to do.  She told me her favorite part was jumping in the foam pit!

Tonight was her dance class (which she is also taking with Reece).  The class is 30 minutes of ballet and 30 minutes of tap.  She was excited to have her hair in a bun like ballerina's and told me she really had fun.

Entertaining Hudson for the hour during her class was not what I would describe as fun.  The waiting area in the studio is small and with today being the first day of class it was slam full of people.  All he wanted to do was crawl back and forth, which was fine, but every time I tried to pick him up if he was getting close to the crowds of people he flipped out and did his famous Houdini move.  I definitely got my workout.

I'm driving Robby's car this week while mine is being serviced and after getting everyone buckled and ready to come home I turned the key to discover the battery was dead.  Christy had already driven off and I knew I could call her to come back, but I thought Robby would be nearby.  I called him and he was all the way downtown in a meeting.  I quickly assessed what I could do and since it was approaching Hudson's bedtime I decided to try calling our friend's Bryce and Sarah.  They live very close and I knew Bryce would be able to help me out.  They came to our rescue, got the car started and sweet Sarah even followed me home to make sure we would get there OK.  A HUGE thank you to awesome friends that I can always count on to help me out in a bind.  Y'all are the best!

Monday, August 13, 2012

Broken record...Lake Fun!

I know I probably sound like a broken record talking about our weekends and the lake, but it never gets old to us. :-) We spent a wonderful weekend there with friends from our neighborhood.  Carrie and Mark came up for the weekend and the kids were excited to have playmates there!  We've known Annabelle since she was a tiny newborn and she is only three months younger than Handley, so these girls have grown up together.  Her brother, Emerson, is just about a month older than Hudson.

These sweet boys couldn't stand watching the girls get to play outside on the deck without them.  They took advantage of every chance they got to try to sneak out the door when someone was coming in our out.  For the record, they did get plenty of playtime out there, too.

Saturday morning started off a little cloudy and cool.  We tried to brave it for a while, but when it started to rain we decided to come in for a little while until the sun began to shine.  The kids watched part of a movie and had an indoor picnic.  Thankfully, it didn't take long for the weather to get better and then we were out on the water the rest of the day.  As usual, the kids had fun tubing, swimming, and being silly on the boat.

Sunday morning we got an early start and spent sometime at the "waterfall beach."  It's usually really crowded and quite the people watching venue. However, because we got there so early it was like our own private beach for a while and was so peaceful.  The dads took the big girls up the waterfall to explore, which they loved.

Thursday, August 9, 2012

Peter Pan

Tonight Gigi took Handley to see Peter Pan at the Fox Theater.  She has been so excited about this special day!  Gigi had contemplated taking Harper, too, but we decided she might be a little young and the show would be just a little too long and too late for her.  Harper got to have a special spend the night party and movie theater outing with Gigi and Papa last weekend so that today when we dropped Handley off, it wouldn't be such a disappointment to Harper.

I haven't talked to Handley, but I got picture updates from Gigi all afternoon and evening, which I loved.  Handley got an American Girl gift card for her birthday so she went with Gigi to pick out some things for her doll and spend her gift card.  She said she got a tennis outfit for her doll and a seat that attaches to the table so the doll can eat with her.

Before the show they painted her nails and went out to a "fancy" dinner.

I loved seeing these pictures of her at her special outing and know she had so much fun.  Handley's best friend, Avery, was also seeing Peter Pan tonight and I got text saying that they ran into each other while they were there. I know that was just the icing on the cake for Handley!

All week Handley kept whispering to me that she was going to get to have dessert at midnight after the show.  Gigi is one to keep her word!  They ended their night with a milkshake and she was obviously worn out from all the excitement.

I can't wait to see her tomorrow and hear all the details from her point of view.

Monday, August 6, 2012

Summer nights

My kids' bedtimes this summer have gotten later and later, but our summer nights have been so much fun that I haven't let it bother me.  Tonight was no exception.  After Hudson woke up from his nap this afternoon we woke Harper up and tried to play outside, but it was too hot so we decided to throw on our bathing suits and make our way to the pool for a little bit instead. After a quick swim and leftovers for dinner we made our way into the back yard to play.  The kids had so much fun playing back there and Hudson (even though he's still just crawling everywhere) was right in the middle of the fun.  It started to sprinkle around bath time so that was our cue to head inside.  On our way in we spotted a giant rainbow!  We ran to the front yard and took pictures before it really started raining. We didn't quite make it before the rain, but the kids had fun getting wet.  It was the perfect summer night.

Hudson sure is keeping me on my toes these days.  Like I mentioned, he still isn't walking, but he would win any speed crawling race, hands down.  He is SO fast.  He also has recently decided that he no longer is happy hanging out in the stroller or my arms.  If he's in the stroller and he gets bored with the snacks he screams and if he's in my arms he does a Houdini wiggle move to get down.  Makes for really fun outings.  I wouldn't mind so much if he could walk, but when he wants to get down and crawl around on the nasty floor of public places I cringe.  He has no interest in walking.  He can walk behind a push-toy and while holding our hands, but doesn't like to do it, and certainly not if we want him to.  The second I get him on his feet he sits right back down to crawl.  I know he'll do it in his own time, but until then, I'll just keep sanitizing him anytime he forces me to let him crawl around in unclean places.

And lastly, I just had to share some of these awesome pictures that Jen took for us at the beach.  I'm so lucky that my best friend is also an amazing photographer (At First Sight Photography) and just happened to be on vacation with us.  Love them and can't wait to get one blown up really big in my house!