Friday, August 31, 2012

5 Favorite Summer Memories

Now that preschool has started for Andrew and Alex is working on his letters, I thought I would share with you a recap of our summer (Ha! Though, in the gorgeous South, fall comes a bit later) with our 5 favorite summer memories!

1. Our trip to Gatlinburg (our trip with a a trip):
We loved taking our boys to the big mountains and showing them all sorts of things while we were visiting the Smokies. It was so gorgeous!!

2. Taking the boys to the playground that their Daddy helped build while in high school:
  It was so much fun! Andrew thought it was the coolest thing that his Daddy helped make this place. It was even cooler when we found "his" name on one of the fence posts.

3. Blueberry Picking!! We will definitely be doing this again next summer!
This was one of the coolest things we did this summer! Andrew loved picking them and Alex loved eating all of them before getting them home LOL 

4. We hit a milestone in our marriage - 5 years!!
 It was definitely done is style, too! Two kids, a dog, and us just chilling and enjoying everything around us - doing exactly what we wanted to do (even if it wasn't exactly what we had pretended to plan LOL).

5. LOTS and LOTS of playing outside at one of our favorite parks:

Our summer was packed with lots of wonderful things! There are definitely more than these 5 things - but those were the favorites. Other great moments: I had my 2 of my brothers come for a visit. We took a trip to Tennessee. We went to a friend's wedding. There was just so much! And we loved every moment of it. 

But our favorite thing that is part of everyone of these memories?

Our favorite thing is watching our two boys growing up together - not just as great brothers, but also the best of friends!

I hope y'all had a great summer and made some great memories that you'll always remember, too!

**Linking up with**


Wednesday, August 29, 2012

The Shared Bedroom Adventures

It's been a while since the last update on our boys' room.

The last thing I posted about was how everyone was sleeping so well and blah blah blah. HA! Yeah, after talks with a few of my mommy friends from church, we got a solution.

Problem (just before Alex turned 1, is when this started): Andrew was messing with Alex NON-STOP during nap time. Not so much at bedtime. Just during naps. No one was getting sleep and nothing was getting done because of having to go in there every 5 minutes. Andrew was in Alex crib and so was all his stuff from his bed. Oh my gosh! SO ANNOYING. Cute, but annoying. Poor Alex, right?

Solution: Separated during naps. HA! No more messing around! Alex is in the pack-n-play in either our bedroom or the office while Andrew is in his room. It has worked out wonderfully. Again, I thank those mamas for the wonderful words of wisdom!

Only, now we had a new issue...

Problem: Andrew was told that he could get up and play quietly with his toys in the mornings - no one can come out until 7am though. Mama needs her coffee and quiet time... So, everything was fine until about a month or so ago. Alex was getting rather annoyed that he was no able to get up and go play.If I went in there at all, then clearly it was time for everyone to get up. Nah-uh.

Solution: Alex graduated to the toddler bed!!! Yep, he's 16 months - that's when Andrew changed over. I know, right?! Time flies!! Oh, and Andrew graduated to the day bed!

 Alex's bed is on the top; Andrew's is on the bottom. 

 Trying out his almost-new bed and loving it :) Technically, at that was still Andrew's. Silly boy. He knew he was going to be his shortly.

 Getting into Daddy's toolbox. 

 Oh, my goodness...we are going to let another one loose?! HA! No, he isn't really saying anything. He was just rubbing his head and asking me for a screwdriver and this is the pic my phone got. LOL

 Reading a bit before bed; Snuggling with Roary the Lion :)

So, this was done on Sunday after we got home from a birthday party. We are now coming up on the 4th night of the big boys beds. The votes are in....

THEY LOVE IT! They both play together so nice in the mornings. AND!!! It is quiet. Not the scary quiet where you know something has been destroyed and/or torn to hell. But, the wonderful quiet with bits and pieces of laughter from two sweet little boys.

It is so nice!! Alex has fallen out a couple of times. But, you wouldn't know unless you went it their room to check on them... Alex fell out (maybe? probably...) and was sleeping on the floor instead of complaining about. Andrew (still) would get so completely annoyed that his sleep was interrupted by gravity. 

It's been a great week so far. Our boys are growing up so fast. Gotta keep taking those pictures and documenting everything.

**linking up with**
The MOB Society

Wordless Wednesday

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Understanding the Bible {Toddler Style}

We just love Andrew's school! Not only do they TEACH (it is NOT a daycare, mother's day out, etc), but they also incorporate Bible stories. As it is the beginning of the year, they are starting with the story of Creation, naturally. Well, Andrew has been a Mr. Man (shocker) lately and was not into sharing his school day - until today.

While he is sharing his treasure box treat with Alex (ah, so so sweet! makes me smile every time!), I tried again to ask about his day and shared what Alex learned while he was gone. I asked about everything - coloring pages, shapes, etc. But when I got to, "Did you read any stories or books today?" This is how the convo continued:

Andrew: Um, no. Wait! Yes, we read Bible.

Me: (trying not to jump out of the drivers seat in excitement and calmly asking) Really? What story was it?

Andrew: Oh, Garden Den (aka Garden of Eden).

Me: Wow. What happened in the Garden? Who was there?

Andrew: People, bad snake, trees and apples.

Me: A bad snake? What did he do bad?

Andrew: Girl touched the apples and dat baaaaaaad. (enter angry face by Andrew) God dead.

Um what? Ok, I know that this school is Church of God and we are Catholic, but I KNOW that these stories are the same, people. But, let me continue and explain.

Me: What? Honey, God can't die. He is everywhere. (at this point we are home now and I go get their Bible.) Andrew come here a second (he's my big boy and ran to the potty!!! Hey, I'm a mom and I can SO say that in a post! LOL)

We sit down (before getting anything else started to figure out what he is really trying to say and correct it) and look at the picture. By the way, this is the Bible they have:

Alex's Baptism gift from Rachel (and family!!) :)

Me: Andrew, is this the story? (showing him the Garden pages) And what do we see on the pages? What's happening here?

Andrew: That Garden Den. Those people went to the tree and it was baaaaaaaad, Mommy!!!(he was rather annoyed I was not getting it...I mean we had the facial expressions, hands flying, etc.). Bad bad and God died!!!

WHAT?! What is he really trying to tell me????

So then I go get my Bible. I tell him that all Bibles look different on the outside, but they say the same thing pretty much. So he and Alex are both sitting with me on the floor and we are reading the story of the Garden of Eden (i.e. Paradise and the test of free will). So, we are reading it and - DUH! - I figure out what he means and which I should have known. However, someone saying "God died" kinda threw me off a bit...Here's where I finally got what my almost 3 year old was trying to tell me:

"But of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil you are not to eat; for, the day you eat of that, you are doomed to die." Gn 2:17, NJV

At this point, Andrew says...ok, yells, "See? Dead!"


So, we sit for a minute more while I explain carefully that it is not God that dies. It is people. They did a bad thing by not listening and now they are doomed. I told him that it was ok though, because God send us his Son, Jesus, to help us out. Short, sweet to the point for now.

He was glad I got it (and that I corrected it) and said, "Yes, people die. Can I have ham cheese crackers now?"

Preschool Learning - Letter A {Alex}

Andrew has had a wonderful first week of school and was super excited about what he learned today. Alex, on the other hand, is missing his brother. Poor guy. But, his morning does go by fast now that he has started learning a few things, too. I told him that he has school work like Andrew. He is very happy about having something to do like his brother. It is so cute, too!

This week Alex is learning about the letter A. I have taken a few different ideas from some of my favorite blogs (Totally Tots, I Can Teach My Child, and Catholic Icing) and used what fit Alex's personality/age.

 Here's what we will be doing this week: 
"A" is for Alex - letter names/sounds, read Alex Alligator, alligator coloring page, Baby Alligator
"A" is for ant - ant fingerprint art, read 100 Hungry Ants
"A" is for apple - read Ten Apples Up on Top, Apples, Apples, Apples, apple coloring page
Shapes - the letter "a" is like a triangle (using craft sticks)
Bible verse "As for me and my house we will serve the Lord." Joshua 24:15

The days Andrew is home from school, he will get to work on some of these activities. He also has a few things he is learning at school that I plan on working on at home with him, too.

Alex and I had to drop by the library first to grab a few books that we needed for the week. (Sadly, there it is not as organized as I had hoped - instead of putting author names in alphabetical order, like any other library, they just put all the books together. Meaning, anyone with the last name starting with S went together in no order. It was SO hard to find the books I wanted. I am going to request the books for next week later this afternoon.).

Anyway, Alex loved the library and loved working on his project while he heard the stories. Here's what he worked on today:

If you are doing some preschool/toddler activities with your child, share with us in the comments. We would love to know!

Monday, August 27, 2012

School Bus Project {Andrew}

Look what Andrew brought home from his first week of school!!

A gluing project with school buses. Cute!!

Menu Plan

Last week of grilling!! It was a fun month full of delicious food prepared by me and grilled by my hubby! Go teamwork! Next month will be full of football weekends and someone will be turning 3!!!!

**Linking up with**
Org Junkie

Saturday, August 25, 2012

A Day at McWane Science Center

The day before school started for Andrew, the big kids started school. We knew that this would be the perfect day to go to McWane and actually enjoy it without the chaos of summer camp kids and such. And, we were right! For almost an hour (maybe more) we were the only ones on one of the floors (there are 4). It was so great! Andrew and Alex loved it!! I'll just let the pictures speak for themselves :)


After all that playing, it was time for lunch. As we were walking toward the parking deck elevators, Andrew said, "Mommy! We can eat here. Look over there." Sure enough there was a food court. Clearly, we had not been here in a while. This was definitely new and quite convenient! So the boys got Pizza Hut and I got Subway. It was another perfect day!

1st Day of School!! {Prek-3}


Andrew started PreK-3, this week!! :) He was (and still is!) so excited about school! The night before we got ready by reading a few "back to school" books.

Of course, like last year, we read The Night Before Preschool!
We also read If you Take a Mouse to School and The Mine-O-Saur. Jason read Andrew and Alex the mouse book while I was getting their treats out. I made rice krispy treats for every one - yum!
Then, we reminded the boys how it is nice to share and not be a Mine-O-Saur. Then, once they got into bed, we read the last book. So sweet :) 

The next morning, Andrew was SO excited to go to school! He couldn't wait!! He wanted to leave when he got up, but Jason and I told him that breakfast always came first. He didn't want his tummy to be sad. Of course, he has become a smarty pants and reminded us that he does have snack time at school. Goodness... Speaking of snack time, here what he got for his first snack:

This was his little snack baggie from last year. It is from a shop on Etsy called Pineapple Spice (she may not be in business any more. I cannot find her store now.)

 Ready for school!! 

 Looking for his teacher and friends. 

Found someone he knows - his teacher!! Time to go! We love you :) 

Alex and I went to get a goodie and coffee at Starbucks. Alex wasn't too interested in it...he was trying to figure out where Andrew went. I told him he went to school. He said, "Coo?" And, then got a little bit sad. Poor guy misses his buddy. 

He got over it pretty quick once we got back, though. He helped me make cookie pops for Andrew :) 

While those were baking, Alex worked on some school work of his own. This week I am introducing the ABCs to him. I wish I had gotten pictures of what we were doing, but he was so involved and interested in school stuff like Andrew, that I didn't want to interrupt. I'll definitely get some next week when we do the letter A. I am following the lesson plans from Totally Tots - "Now I Know My ABCs." I love their website!! 

Books Alex and I read this week:
Chica Chica Boom Boom (Alex walks around the house now saying BOOM BOOM! Andrew really liked this book, too!)
Alligator Alphabet (library book)
The Jet Alphabet Book (this was a book that my little brothers gave to them that they read all the time!)
All Aboard ABC (Andrew's favorite book from the fabulous Rachel!)
We are also working with our Leap Frog Fridge Phonics, too. We had just ABC out this week, but next week the letter A will be out only. 

It was time to go get Andrew, and Alex dropped everything to run to the door. He was kind of annoyed he had to wait the 2 minutes to put his shoes on...LOL

 As you can see, the shoes never went on either.. And he is he asking where "And go?"

 Home from school!! Told us he has a great day and went right back into the routine - hot dog? playground? LOL 

 This is the sweetest thing EVER. Andrew got to pick a prize from the treasure box and he wanted to share it with Alex. LOVE IT!

I just love it :)

Lunch at the playground - so happy that this weather has been AMAZING these past few weeks. We were out he until nap time!

It was a great start to a great first week of school for Andrew (and Alex!). The first day, Alex was upset that Andrew left. The second day, Andrew was so sad that Alex couldn't come to school with him. I wonder what will happen next week.


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