Tuesday, August 25, 2015

The First Days

Not quite sure how I ended up with a 7th grader and two 5th graders, but they are currently living in my house!  Ryan had a police escort to the bus stop, but was too pained to take a picture for me.  His 7:00 AM time to get on the bus took its toll!  Lydia and Emily seemed more willing to take a picture, but we failed to get the backpacks on since I had to leave for work before they left for school.  Next year we will be able to do a picture with all three again.  Ryan leaves almost an hour earlier than they do and I couldn't bring myself to wake them for a picture.

Crazy when you can remember--like it was yesterday--telling your son to grab hold of one side of a baby carrier, you have in your hand, so that you can do the best you can to hold his hand while you carry his baby sisters.  That WAS just yesterday, wasn't it?  :)  I know, I know . . . they will be in college or grown with children of their own before I know it.

First day went really well.  We are off to a good start so far.

Wednesday, August 19, 2015

What a Band it!

 I am not sure if I mentioned in a prior post that Ryan was asked to be part of the High School Marching Band this year or not.  We are SO proud of him!  He was one of three 7th graders who were asked to be part of the high school marching band.  I was a little nervous about him doing this with these older kids, but in seeing the band kids at my high school (Spotswood--where I work) I have realized that they are such a great group of kids!  They work together so well and really seem to be accepting of each other and have each others back.  There is one song that he does where he carries a base drum.  This is what he carries when they are in parades and marching in to the football games on Fridays (when they start).  (Picture with base drum at bottom).

During competitions and halftime shows, his band director has put him on an instrument that I am sorry to say I don't know of the name.  It has multiple instruments on it and he plays them all at the same time pretty much.  It is amazing to watch him!  He even has to switch sticks in the middle and play something else.  We have been completely blown away at the way he has taken to this and has really enjoyed his time with the band and learning this new and challenging stuff!!!  Never had a music lesson in his life and Mike and I have NO musical ability!  All we can figure is that he has my Uncle Bill's blood running through him pretty thick.  :) 

This is a picture of Ryan and Blake.  Blake is a Junior at East Rock High School (where Ryan will go to high school and where he is part of the band.)  Sadly, he will be gone by the time Ryan is a Freshman, but this is the greatest kid!  I have never seen him with a hat on before yesterday so you can't see his face too well.  He always helps Ryan disassemble this instrument he plays and they walk together as Ryan waits for Blake while he gets his xylophone packed up and they walk together.  He talks to Blake more than any of the other students and I love that he is looking out for my little guy!!  Wish Blake was a tall Freshman or Sophomore so that they could be at East Rock together.  No such luck.  :)

Can't wait to show you pictures and movies of the actual band events!!

Monday, August 17, 2015

A public one? Really?

When I was 8 years old, my parents had an in-ground pool put in our backyard.  It happened that the pool was installed very close to my birthday that year so I always felt the pool was a little bit more mine than my brothers.  Although, I doubt he would agree with that.  Having the good fortune of your parents putting a pool in just for you on your birthday, creates never having a need to pay to go swimming.  Then deciding to live your adult life within 30 minutes of your parents home, you continue to not have to pay to go to the pool.  It is great!!!  In my 30 plus years of life, I have gone with a friend to the pool just a small handful of times.  Three times that I can actually remember.  Vacation is different.  It is a public pool, but it comes with the cost of your vacation.

My children  have all been to a public pool with a friend at least once.  Two of them have gone to Swift Run pool in Elkton.  There is a high dive there (my parents don't have one of those--just a regular diving board) as well as a couple of slides.  Again, my parents just have a little kiddie slide that we move to the edge of the pool and throw water on it ourselves.  This is not an issue for me.  I LOVE going to my own pool.  Ryan and Lydia have shared their stories of Swift Run pool with Emily.  Emily has been to public pools, but apparently they only had diving boards that were "not all that high."  So sad.  :)

I have fought them tooth and nail to NOT go to Swift Run pool.  It is about 15 minutes from our house so I feel if I am going to drive that far, I may as well go to my parents pool.  Emily has been dying to go on the high dive and I can remember LOVING the high dive that was at the JMU pool where I took swimming lessons as a kid.  The first time I went off of it, I was two or three years old and my mom said they just held me over the water and dropped me.  Obviously I survived and continued to go on my own.  So, having this memory made me want to see that she have the same experience . . . so yesterday we went to Swift Run pool.

$24 for the 4 of us to swim for the day!!  $24!!!  Is this a common amount for public pools?  $6 a person seems like a lot especially since you have to be a certain height to go off of the diving boards and slides.  Ryan and Emily were tall enough for everything, but Lydia was too short to go off the big sliding board.  This caused a bit of a problem, but Ryan and Emily did not go down this slide all day or anything and Lydia was still able to go down the smaller slide and all the boards.  I still felt she should have at least been only $5.  The owner did not agree.

They all did have a great time so I took some pictures to document this trip to a public swimming pool.  :)

 Lydia on the high dive.  Sure wish she would not hold her nose when she does this.  :)
                          Ryan on the high dive
 Emily running off the high dive while Ryan and Lydia look on.
                              Ryan and the big slide

The splash he made while coming off the slide and skimming across the water.

This is my favorite.  Emily coming off of the big slide, Ryan getting out of the water and getting ready to go on something again and poor Lydia watching her and wishing she could be tall enough to go.  :(

Monday, August 10, 2015

Lovin the Lake!

This past weekend we met Paul, Allison, Adella and Penny at Lake Anna.  We took the boat down for the day and spent the day swimming and jumping and having a blast!  It was not as warm as it has been so the 20 minute ride down the lake was a bit cold with water spraying up on us, but it was still fun.  The water was choppy as it was windy and lots of boats around.  Made the spraying a bit worse than normal.  :)  I hope Paul's family had as much fun as our family.  My kids do love their cousins and whatever time they can spend with them is always great!  Definitely a trip we will take with them again!!

 Pit stop we made.  Parked the boat and Allison took this picture at the end of the dock.  Love it!

Floating down the lake

                                                                   Love the expression on Penny's face here.  She jumped and jumped to me off the boat.  She was so brave, but continued to stay mad at me because I would never keep her from going under water.  :)  She kept jumping though.  She's so funny!!

                                                               Boat docked and all of us hanging in the water.  We had our own private beach area.  We do this every time we go out.  It's nice to have your own.  

I think these two had a lot of fun!  Thank you for the pictures Allison since I failed to bring my camera.  :(

Sunday, August 2, 2015

Wheel'n into the sunset!

Lydia and Emily have a friend named Jesela.  Jesela lives in a house with an awesome yard!  When they go to her house, they often spend 30 minutes telling me about everything they did in the yard.  Yesterday, Jesela had her birthday party.  The girls went and were able to see several kids they go to school with.  They had a blast!!!  At the end of the party, after most of the kids had gone, Jesela's dad allowed Jesela to get her Uncle's 4 wheeler out and let the girls ride.  Jesela drove them one "lap" and then let Emily and Lydia drive.  They loved it and have decided they want one now.  :)  They don't seem to understand why we can't ride it in our back yard.  I explained that our back yard is the equivalent of a postage stamp portion of Jesela's yard.  By the time you would take off, you would be at the other side before any speed was achieved.  They are convinced it would work.  :)  I am sure as soon as they tell their dad they love 4 wheelers (since this was their first ride on one), he will do what he can to get one for them.  :)  Love these pictures!!

Jesela is actually behind Emily in this picture.  She just moved at the right time to make it look like Emily was driving by herself.

Lydia had a hard time seeing out of the helmet.  It didn't fit on her just right.  Once she got it pulled down correctly, she was a force to be reckoned with.  :)