Monday, September 29, 2014

E. J.'s birthday weekend

This weekend we celebrated E. J.'s 32nd birthday. He chose to spend his birthday making sure that K had fun (and by fulfilling his monthly goal) of making a trip to Six Flags. It was the opening day of Fright Fest and Kathryn loved the spooky feel (but wasn't a huge fan of the spooky people they had walking around throughout the park).
Having fun with the water misters throughout the park
We didn't get home until 11 Saturday night. We were totally exhausted after a full day and made up for it by having a lazy Sunday at home. A million things needed to be done, but I think our time was better spent just hanging around and gearing up for another week.
Per usual, celebrating E. J.'s birthday with his favorite - pineapple upsidedown cake

Here's to a happy 32nd year!

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

So long, summer

It's no surprise that I don't have a single hesitation about saying 'goodbye' to summer. I'm ready for the cool weather, shorter days and cozier nights (hello sweatpants and flannel sheets!).

There are a few things happening around here that mark the end of one season and the start of another.

I'm almost two months into a new job! I was fortunate enough to get a promotion and move to a different office that I previously worked closely with in my other position. It's a lot more responsibility, but it's a great opportunity that I'm so fortunate to have been given this chance.Patrick Swayze lives! Patrick Swayze my car, that is. A week and a half away ago he hit 200k miles. My hope was that he would be it to that point, so anything beyond this point is great. Although he looks like crap, I'm trying to milk this car as long as possible.
Kathryn is loving her new school. She leaves with so much enthusiasm each day and is constantly wowing us with how much she's learning! From learning about the planets, the shorter days (they're learning about the transitions of fall this week) to knowing all of her months.

On her second day of school she 'let' me walk her to the cafeteria, then on the third day I had to stand at the front door and watched her make her way to the cafeteria.
                      
By the end of the week I was told that she is a big girl and didn't need me to walk her in anymore. Since the fourth day, it's been me dropping her off in the car each day and watching her walk in all by herself.
                      
One of us is not okay with her growing up so quickly.
                       
'Family' was the theme of last week. She brought this home and E. J. noticed that for some reason we all needed bras...hmmmm.

We wrapped up the summer with a visit from some of our favorite people! Kim, Andy and Ben made a trip to visit us for an extended weekend. We had so much fun just enjoying each other's company and Kathryn loved having more people in the house.
Getting so big!
 Buds!

Summer may have come to an end, but I have some serious updating to do about fun things that happened throughout the summer. More to come!

Thursday, September 11, 2014

Second first day of school

We got a surprise last week and found out that after being on the waiting list, our local school had a spot available for Kathryn in their Pre-K program. We were/are so excited that this opportunity came so that Kathryn could start going to real school.

Assuming we don't move, she'll be in this school for the next 14 years (that's right...Pre-K-12 is on the same campus).

Kathryn went to her daycare on Monday as her official last day and to say goodbye to her friends after a little over two years there. When I picked K up from school each day we would walk down the hall past the front office. Ms. Shelly, who works in the front office, was there everyday waiting for Kathryn with a peppermint in hand. They do this in "secret" because she's not supposed to give out candy to all of the kids.

When we got to the end of the hall on Monday, Ms. Shelly had a special surprise - the entire bucket of peppermints!

I think Kathryn told everyone we passed that afternoon that she wouldn't be back anymore because she's going to "a big kid's school." She was sad about leaving but had no hesitations about moving schools. We're pretty happy about no more daycare bills. Even though we just paid for the month last week, it's a win for our checkbook in the coming months!
This weekend we talked about going to the big kid's school a bunch. I asked Kathryn how she was going to meet new friends and she had a plan almost immediately. (Looking my dead in the eyes and reaching out her hand to shake mine) "Hi! I'm Kathryn. It's an honor to shake your hand."

She later told us that no one knew how to shake hands, but perhaps her approach was a little strong :).

For the big day, Kathryn picked out her outfit and was super pumped about starting school.
This picture is blurry because she was jumping with excitement to start her day. Her teacher could not have been more welcoming! She met us in the office and showed us the two classrooms that Kathryn will be in (school started two weeks ago). The elementary school was expanded and the building is only a few years old. Both of us loved the big bright classrooms.
I left work early so I could pick her up on her first day (because school gets out at 3:25 my mother-in-law and father-in-law are helping us tremendously by picking her up, especially because the school doesn't have an after-school program. Luckily it will work out that I can drop her off each morning). After I moved up in the line about two spots Kathryn could see me and was waiving like crazy.
The first thing she told me in the car: "Mom! I have a new best friend! His name is Cooper. He's a boy." Phew! All smiles and happy stories - it was a great first day. I picked up a cake pop from Starbucks because a big day like this just calls for one.
At home she wanted me to take about 100 photos of her making silly faces :).
Yesterday, Kathryn's second day, we worked on the drop-off routine. Typically parents will drive under the overhang and the kids walk in by themselves to the cafeteria. We'll get there, probably by next week, but I walked Kathryn to the cafeteria today. We said our goodbyes and she calmly walked away. As she made her way to her table she started slowing down, probably taking in the amount of kids around her, but then I saw her light up and do a big wave to a familiar face, whom I believe to be Cooper. She struck up a conversation and I watched her for a moment and then headed out. Before I know it, I'll just be dropping her off at the curb.

Just this morning Kathryn told me "I can't wait to walk into school by myself!" I'm not sure I'm ready for that one. As it is, I miss my little buddy on our car ride into town and back home each day.

Things Kathryn likes about the new school:
  • Being able to walk down the hall and go to the bathroom by herself
  • Her teachers (two teachers and two classrooms)
  • Learning new things! At dinner last night she explained to us what "persistent" means and gave us an example of a spider crawling up a spout. "It's when you try, try and try again and never give up!"
  • Cooper
Things Kathryn doesn't like about the new school:
  • The other kids get hot lunch. She told me "You don't have to make my lunch anymore, they can just give me lunch at school." Sorry kiddo, I'll be making your lunch.
  • No blankets or stuffed animals allowed at nap time anymore (daycare allowed those item)
  • When someone interrupts her talking to Cooper
More to come in Kathryn's new school adventures!

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

"First Day" of School

"It's Gator Room day!" That's how I woke Kathryn up yesterday because I knew it would get her out of bed instantly. And it worked!

Kathryn started in the "big kids" class yesterday, marking her last year at her current school. She left the Panda room in the dust and walked to the end of the hall with sheer excitement as she entered the Gator class, greeted by her friends.
She told us that her first day was "super amazing!" and brought us home a picture "of our family in a rainbow." She was disappointed that she forgot to put arms on us, but that edit is coming soon :).
As a special back to school dinner, Kathryn asked that I make enchiladas. Those red spots on her meal are just the start of her putting hot sauce on them. She's definitely a Texan.
I was exhausted after work so we laid on the couch after dinner and Kathryn started rubbing my hair. After a while I told her that she didn't have to do it any more if she didn't want to but told me, "I would be honored to." Who is this kid?
Day 2! 
She's made the decision to grow out her bangs, so we're giving that a try.
We know she'll have a great last-year at her school and can't believe that a year from now she'll be in Kindergarten!