Monday, September 24, 2018

P.O.E.T.S.

There was an old rumor that circulated in our neighborhood ("the Hundo") that a group called the POETS (P*** on Everything, Tomorrow's Saturday) used to get together every Friday night at the neighborhood's inception in the late 80's/early 90's. It was a bring your own chair and drink type activity. They had a flag that they would post in a yard that day and people would congregate at the house with the flag that evening after work. One of the original POETS members found the flag and brought it to us! We decided to attempt to bring this back last summer with our neighbors, but it never really got off the ground. This year, we decided to try again. The first week there were about 5 houses represented at our gathering including one of the original POETS couples. The following week there were more than 40 people! All the kids came riding bikes and we hung out for several hours in lawn chairs while the kids rode bikes up and down the street. It went so well that we decided to keep doing it! We've been going for about a month now and had to hang back last week due to rain, but will hopefully do a few more weeks before the weather turns. It has been a great way to meet the neighbors!

And the original POETS flag:

Thursday, September 20, 2018

Jane's third birthday

Our sweet Jane turned three last weekend! Here is the last picture of her as a two year old!

On her birthday, Chris took her out to breakfast at Chick-fil-A. He offered to go get doughnuts, but Jane has decided she doesn't like doughnuts, just the sprinkles. So Chick-fil-A it was! 

Once they got home, everyone was awake so we opened presents.

Then we headed to Build-a-Bear! Shug sent Jane and Eleanor a gift card for their birthdays so we went and the girls had a blast making "Harper" the unicorn and "Rock Star" the bear. They even have beating hearts! Thank you!!

Gaby and Papa Laser came to visit, so we were able to hang out for the day with them. Chris took them to the brewery that Uncle Rob and Auntie Mollie will be having their wedding rehearsal at in April.

Later that night we had cake! Jane chose pink and purple icing with chocolate cake in the middle.

Gaby and Papa Laser read the girls bedtime stories before heading home. 

The next day we celebrated Jane's birthday with her friends at small group. We hadn't planned a party because we were unsure whether Hurricane Florence (which cancelled two days of school for us last week!) was going to hit us and whether we would be stuck inside or have power. It ended up that we got a tiny bit of rain and a bit of wind, but it essentially missed us completely. Unfortunately North and South Carolina did not fare as well. So we celebrated Sunday at our community group!

Happy 3rd birthday, Janer! We love you so much!

Monday, September 17, 2018

The babies found their toes and other videos

I wrote this in June...and never published it! But then wanted to share it now because Ben finally found his toes - just 2.5 months later!

Rosie found her toes! It has been so interesting watching the twins develop because they are developing at completely different times. The other week Rosie found her toes and ever since then she has been grabbing them and trying to put them in her mouth. It's so cute. Ben still doesn't know his exist :)

And now, as you can see from the picture below, Ben finally found his!

And a few more videos I found of the twins interacting...

Saturday, September 15, 2018

Jane is THREE!

Jane is three years old! Like most middle children, she is adaptable and copies everything her big sister does. She absolutely will not be pushed around though and stands up for herself with vigor (against her sister). Jane does not like to be wet (except in the pool), dirty, sandy, mulchy, or anything in between. If she isn't clean, she has to change her clothes pretty much immediately - even for a tiny splash. She loves to swim though, and can stay in a pool for hours in her swimmies. She is a fish! She likes to dance like her sister, read books, and loves playing with the babies. Jane is not gentle, though, and while she does everything in love, she often upsets her younger siblings by either knocking them over, squishing them, or being too loud. She is also our most genuinely sweet child - she hands out compliments and praises like water and they come out of nowhere. "I like your shirt, dad!" "Thanks for making me this, mom!" I love her caring heart and hope we're able to find ways to nurture her sweet spirit! She knows how to throw a tantrum though and goes from very happy to very mad very quickly. She's learning to use her words, but frequently just starts yelling when frustrated.

Jane has the most gorgeous curly hair. People ask me whether we curl it or if it's natural, and if you know me, you know I'm not spending time curling my kids' hair. Anyway, I love her movie star hair and can't bring myself to cut it! She sleeps about 11 hours at night and naps occasionally - but I'm hoping she'll nap more now that her sister is in school and she has the room to herself in the afternoon. She also started preschool this week! Jane potty trained herself just after she turned 2.5 and barely had an accident for the first two weeks. I was so impressed. It just shows us that when she sets her mind to something, nothing can stop her determination.

We love our sweet middle child! Happy 3rd birthday, Jane!!

Jane at onetwothreefourfive, sixseveneightnineteneleventwelvefifteen, and eighteen months old. Jane at two and two and a half years old.

Eleanor (three) and Jane, each at three:

Thursday, September 13, 2018

Jane's first day of preschool!

Jane started preschool this week! It has been a crazy week here. First, we thought we needed to prepare for Hurricane Florence and school was cancelled "indefinitely" Tuesday night after the girls got back from school. Everyone was home on Wednesday for the start of our hurrication, but then the hurricane moved further south and west, so Wednesday night they decided school was back on for Thursday. William & Mary had evacuated already so the College is closed today (Thursday) and tomorrow, and because a lot of people have already evacuated the peninsula further south and east, a lot of other stuff is closed for the weekend already, too. And now we're only supposed to get a lot of rain (I think). I also have a ton of milk in the freezer for the babies so I am hoping we don't have any power outages. Anyway, back to Jane...

She is headed to her second day today (thankfully!), but school for her is officially cancelled Friday. We are glad she'll only miss one day this week though instead of two. Here's our sweet girl on her first day!
(The above picture courtesy of Eleanor)

Jane in car line getting ready to be dropped off:

And a picture her teachers posted on our classroom app from school:

Jane looooved her first day. She got to go outside to play on the playground twice (her favorite part) and she drew a picture of a fish, above. She looked a little lost on the playground when I dropped her off, but adjusted very quickly and is going to do well! She also has a friend from our neighborhood and small group in her class! 

Monday, September 10, 2018

We have a Kindergartener!

Eleanor is off to Kindergarten! I've had a rush of conflicting emotions surrounding this milestone, which I feel is totally normal. I'm proud of my girl - she's definitely ready! I'm sad for me and for Jane - she's going to be gone all day! I'm excited for her - she's very excited! But the overwhelming feeling I'm having is bittersweet...that emotion that encompasses both excitement that it's happening and a wish that it wasn't happening, at least not quite yet. I've had five precious years with this girl at home with me almost every day and she is ready to head to school. She is such a gift, and I have to continually remind myself that Chris and I don't own her, she's been entrusted to our care and our goal is to make her an independent, kind, God-loving adult in the short years that we have her at home. So far, she is well on her way!

We had a Back-to-School dinner the night before school started - Eleanor requested spaghetti and meatballs and then we did ice cream sundaes.

The first day of school, we took a few pictures and then Chris and I walked Eleanor to the bus stop. She was so excited and didn't even look back! She said, "Don't worry, Mama. I'll still see you on Saturdays, Sundays, Christmas, and holidays!"
(This picture courtesy of Jane - which is why it's a bit blurry.)
(The last picture is day #2 - we switched to a different bus stop that had other kids at it!)

And here are a couple pictures from Open House the week before where we got to meet her teachers and see her classroom.

I try to continually remind myself to embrace each season while we are in it, but to leave each season with wonderful memories and dignity for the next season. You can't stop time, but it's so, so hard knowing that this is just the first "big" goodbye in a long string of giving them up until they're gone. This sweet girl is so ready to fly, and we are so excited to watch her!