Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Right Now

Evan, you love school and are excited to go every day. You usually wake up before 7:00am, make yourself breakfast, and turn on the cartoons before Daddy gets out of the shower. This new found independence is exciting and terrifying at the same time. I am not ready for you act so grown up!

(Photo memory box from Paper Coterie. Design inspired by Ali Edwards.)

You are into Angry Birds (the board game & the computer game), the show Olivia, drawing with markers and colored pencils, building with Legos, riding your bike, and practicing soccer on the patio.

You love to help out with Rocket, and usually take him potty after school. You also like it when I bring Rocket to school with me in the afternoons to pick you up.

Your favorite color is green, and your favorite food is yogurt with sprinkles. And Mario Brothers fruit snacks.

You love taking your lunch to school. When I pick you up you give me the run down on what you liked, what you didn't like, and how much you ate that day.

You are adjusting really well to your new schedule, and I think you like having a routine. After school you are usually tired and hungry, so we read books, have a snack, watch a movie on Netflix, or play with your Computer Cool School. Some days you want to play with your Angry Birds board game, and some days you look at me for direction. I think you are on overload after spending 6+ hours in a classroom, and I like to allow you to decompress.

You think it's hilarious to say the word "booty", and even more funny when Jack mimics you. I guess when you're a boy, anything having to do with your behind is funny.

Despite the potty humor, you are still my sweet, loving little boy. You still let me give you kisses and hugs before bed, and you tell me "I love you" every morning before school. I love you, Evan.


Jack, you turned 28 months last week, and are learning, growing, and exploring more every day. You are curious, cautious, timid, and outgoing. You love to laugh, sing, dance, paint, color, and play in the playroom.

While Evan is at school, you and I get to hang out and find fun things to do. Pushing Pup-pup in a Tonka truck keeps you busy for a very long time.

You and Pup-pup go everywhere together. You have started asking Pup-pup questions and giving the answer (especially in the car), and you were very upset when I had to wash Pup-pup last week. I love listening to you talk to him while I'm driving: "Pup-pup, where is the tree?" "Right there!" "Pup-pup, where is the birdy?" "Right there!"

One day per week you and I go to Gymboree for a Play & Learn class. You get to interact with other kids your age, work on balance and coordination, and your favorite part is getting a Gymbo stamp (or 5) at the end of class. You always have our instructor put one stamp on each foot, one on your belly, and sometimes you get a stamp on each hand. When Daddy comes home from work you run up to him and squeal "Gymbo stamp!" and lift up your shirt.

You love greeting Daddy by the door when he comes home from work each night.

You love to follow Evan around the house and do everything he does. I'm not sure if Evan enjoys this behavior as much as you do, but I think it's adorable that you want to be just like your big brother.

Your vocabulary continues to expand & you say "no thank you" and "please" without prompting.

I pulled out our box of dinosaurs last week and we had a great time naming them, talking about dinosaurs, and learning different types of dinosaurs. You can now say "t-rex", "brontosaurus", and "triceratops".

You are spunky, adorable, sweet, and loving. You give the best hugs and kisses, and love to rest your head on my shoulder when I carry you to bed each night. I can't image life without you, Jack. I love you.

Saturday, August 27, 2011

Looking Back: A Layout

Karla Dudley released a new kit yesterday for Design House Digital named Twenty Twenty. One of the phrases she included, "looking back", made a perfect title for my layout:

(Supplies - Papers: Twenty - Twenty. Cardstock: Cardstock Essentials. Stitching: Cardstock Essentials. Labels: Jude. Word stickers: Itty Stickers Boy. Staples: Clear Essentials No. 1. "looking back" brush: Twenty - Twenty. Font: Georgia)

I plan on creating a layout all about Evan's first day of school, but I wanted to also document the differences between his first day of pre-school and his first day of Kindergarten. Look how big he is now! What a difference two years makes.

Have a wonderful weekend!

Wednesday, August 24, 2011



Last Monday was your first day of Kindergarten. I can't begin to describe the emotions I was feeling when we walked down the hallway to your classroom. I was nervous, excited, and a little bit teary-eyed when we found your class and walked inside. You were very quiet; taking it all in. We found your cubby and you helped Daddy put your backpack and lunchbox inside before finding your seat. I was hoping you would want us to stick around for a bit & make sure you were okay, but you didn't seem to need us there. I am so proud of your confidence and maturity.

I gave your two or three (or ten) hugs and kisses before waving goodbye & walking out the door. You waved back and said "Bye Dad! Bye Mom! By Jack-Jack!" without any hesitation. As we walked back down the hallway, leaving you behind, I reflected on how far you have come the past two years. Your first day of pre-school was so hard on you. I wasn't sure if you were going to adjust to going to school. Now you are a well-adjusted, outgoing, social little boy. Your first day, and week, were a complete success. You love your teacher, you have made three friends & give us updates on them daily, and you have been given three "green" days. You are so proud of yourself for getting green on your calender. After five green days you can pick a prize out of the treasure box, and that sounds pretty cool to you.

I am so proud of you, Evan. And excited to see what this school year will bring.

I love you,

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Terri & Jayden

This past week has been so much fun for us because our friends, Terri and Jayden, flew from Washington to Florida. I have known Terri for 15 years, and her adorable granddaughter, Jayden is one of Evan's good friends. We had a ton of things planned during their stay, including a trip to Magic Kingdom, the beach, eating out, trips to the pool, a couple of photo sessions, and lots of squeals from the kids (and a few tears, too).

I have a ton of photos from the past week to share, but I am currently uninstalling Photoshop CS4, and reinstalling CS5 & Lightroom, so I can't edit any of them. My hard drive is also full, and I need to move a ton of photos off my MacBook and onto the server. For now I am going to post a few camera photos I took last week. Hopefully I will have all my computer issues figured out within the next couple of days & I can edit and post some better quality photos. I used the app Vignette for all the photo effects and borders.

Our first stop after picking them up at the airport: dinner @ TGI Fridays.

Walking into Magic Kingdom. I love that they are holding hands! So cute.

I took Evan and Jayden on Splash Mountain, and they wanted me to take pictures of everything... including the Slippin' Falls sign right before the 50 foot plunge.

At the bottom of Splash Mountain.

The kids were really well behaved despite the heat and humidity. And they didn't mind smiling for the camera. :-)

We had lunch at the Crystal Palace. It was a nice break from the heat, and the kids loved meeting Pooh, Tigger, Eeyore, and Piglet.

This photo was taken right before we left the park. Jack was so exhausted because he didn't have a nap, but he did really well considering.

Evan was so hot and tired by the end of the day! But I know he had a great time at Magic Kingdom.

Ice cream @ the mall. Evan picked triple chocolate, and Jayden had a snickers ice cream cup.

It was a wonderful trip and the perfect way to end our summer vacation. Thanks for the visit, Terri and Jayden! We miss you already!

Only six more days until my little boy starts Kindergarten. I think I need to buy a few boxes of kleenex. :-)

Wednesday, August 3, 2011


Last week Karla Dudley released an adorable new kit named Familiarity. When I read the name of the kit and saw all the beautiful papers and brushes I knew I wanted to use the photo of Mark, the kids, and our friends to create a layout. When Roy, Jessica, and Dion were visiting, I made the comment that the seven of us are so familiar with each other that it was easy to fall back into our old routines. Despite the thousands of miles between us & how infrequently we get to visit each other, we reconnected and it was like we see each other every day.

(Supplies - Navy cardstock: Cardstock Essentials No. 1. Patterned paper: Familiarity. Hinges: Familiarity. Stitched twill: Relax. Flower brush: Relax. Summer clear word: Summer Freebie. Frame: Familiarity. Clear butterfly: Clear Essentials No. 1. Crystal brad: Clear Essentials No. 1. "So Loving It Here" sticker: Home Matters 1. House brush: Home Matters 1. Clear pocket: Familiarity. Journaling spot: Familiarity. Large flower brush: Familiarity. Staples: Clear Essentials No. 1. Notebook paper: Familiarity . "welcome" brush: Welcome Spring '10. "good" journaling strip: Familiarity. Font: Georgia.)

Mark and I have been keeping a secret from Evan for the past two months... his friend, Jayden, and Jayden's grandmother surprised him by flying into Orlando this afternoon. He was so happy to see Jayden and this should be a very fun week for all of us. The next big surprise: taking them to Magic Kingdom on Thursday. I can't wait!