Spring Semester 2018

Like last fall, here's a roundup of pictures taken by Aubrey Grace Photography for the spring semester.  Mr. Scott, the photographer, is the school secretary's husband and he snaps pictures of the kids in his free time and then posts them to facebook.  It's so fun to get a glimpse into what they're doing each day!

The return from Christmas break was kicked off with a Grandparents Luncheon.  Our kids were lucky enough to have 3 of their 4 grandparents attend.  Katie Wynn had actually stayed home for the day thanks to a fever the day before (darn 24 hour rule) - that's why she's in "civilian" clothes. 


Still learning the proper way to wear the uniform headband...


In February, the kids had a free dress day and got to play bingo with the big kids.


The kids got to take confetti eggs to their classes on Easter Monday.  Looks like Katie Wynn's class enjoyed cracking them on their heads!


Mr. Scott always captures cute faces on Thomas, no matter what he's doing!


Katie Wynn is much more serious and stingier with her smiles.  Sometimes I wonder if she hides from him and his camera because days will pass with no pictures of her.  Wouldn't surprise me!


I enjoyed seeing Katie Wynn on her bike for the St. Jude Trikathon.


My sweet boy doing his hand motions during music class!


I have learned that on Wednesdays - ice cream day - Thomas always picks a popsicle, while Katie Wynn chooses an ice cream cone.


Fun on field day!


The kids (and teachers) treated us Mamas to a Mother's Day Tea.  It was a fun way to spend my afternoon!


The last day of school for us was a family fun day at a family farm.  The kids climbed tractors, jumped in bounce houses, rode horses (not my kids), ran in sprinklers, slid down water slides (also not my kids), and gobbled up pizza.  It was a fun end to the semester!


Trips to the Dentist

I know that I've talked about Katie Wynn's fear of the dentist on here before, and this is just another quick post so that I can remember this checkup.  She is at the 5 and a half year mark and I've been taking her to the dentist every 6 months since she turned 3, and she has yet to actually have her teeth cleaned by the hygienist.  Partly because her first visit was so traumatic (pediatric dentist - got pinned down - sticky fluoride everywhere - etc) and partly because she just has this irrational fear of all things teeth, dentist, hands-in-mouth related.  So anytime a checkup is approaching, I start brainstorming what I can do to make it a successful visit.

This time around, I decided to take Thomas with me on my checkup day so that I could take pictures of him getting his teeth cleaned to show Katie Wynn.  This was his first official time getting his teeth cleaned and he was SUCH a champ.  He was scared at first and wouldn't go at the same time as me (in a different room), but they were able to wait and do him after I finished and he was perfectly fine as long as I could be in the room.  Coming from my experiences with Katie Wynn, I was blown away by how good he was and how EASY the visit was. 


He was not a big fan of the fluoride being painted on at the end and I totally get it - it's sticky and texture-y and tastes weird.  I had to really work to get half a smile after the dentist, but toys from the prize chest and a trip to McDonald's before going back to school definitely helped.


Katie Wynn's appointment was scheduled for the next week, also at my dentist's office.  (We ditched the pediatric dentist in town after two visits, hoping that going with me would be better.)  Leading up to the visit, we practiced playing dentist every night.  We looked at all of the pictures of Thomas and watched the videos I had taken.  We prayed about it and really talked through every step of it.  And still, this face shows how the visit went down:


There were so many tears.  So much fighting and bribing and begging just to get her halfway into the seat.  She did let the hygienist and dentist both look at her teeth and count them, but girlfriend hopped out of that chair and hid in the corner as soon as she saw that spinning toothbrush come out.  I can't even begin to really describe how frustrating and stressful and embarrassing and sweaty these visits are for me.  And I feel so helpless because nothing I say makes her feel less afraid.  It frustrates me and breaks my heart all at the same time.

We have known for a while that she has two teeth where the enamel didn't form correctly in utero.  They will definitely have to be fixed at some point but we've just been watching them as best we can for now.  During his very short peek into her mouth, the dentist noticed a cavity in a back molar and thought it might be good to have it looked at as well as the two with bad enamel.  He referred us to a different pediatric dentist that would have the tools and equipment to work on a terrified child.  The idea was tossed around that she may need to be put to sleep and this mama nearly lost sleep from worrying over it.

Two days later, we made our way to Katie Wynn's new pediatric dentist.  This was the first time ever that Matt has accompanied us to the dentist - we were all hopeful he would be the magic trick to taking her fear away!  

Sadly, she was still terrified so I don't have any action pictures since it was an all-hands-on-deck situation to get her to open her mouth (without scarring her for life), but here is a big smile after her teeth had officially been cleaned for the first time ever!


We learned after these last two visits that part of her fear was coming from what the toothpaste would taste like - and this dentist office won her over with flavorless toothpaste.  Hallelujah! The hygienist was incredibly patient and sweet with her.  Matt and I did have to go through all of our bag of tricks, but I think now that the first time is behind us, she'll hopefully do much better!

After the cleaning she was feeling brave enough to do one of the xrays.


Not quite brave enough to do the other one, but that's ok.  Baby steps!

The best part of the whole visit was that after the dentist examined her, he said we could wait a while on fixing the bad enamel teeth and we could just watch the cavity a little longer.  YAY!  This was such a huge answered prayer.  It is still something that will have to be addressed eventually, but I'll put it off as long as we can!

I know this has become a long post for a silly trip to the dentist - something everyone does twice a year! - but I'm just so proud (and relieved!) of my girl for finally getting through that fear.  I think she was pretty proud of herself too.  She couldn't wait to tell Thomas all about her new dentist and how it's where she goes now.  :)

Halloween Events

You guys, I have a confession.  I don't like Halloween.  I've never really, REALLY loved it but the last couple of years have really convinced me that I might not even like it.  There are a billion events to attend and they all require a costume and end with a giant bag of candy.  By November 1st, we're usually all in tears from exhaustion and have at least one new cavity each.

All that being said, my kids really loved Halloween this year!  Our first event was the Halloween carnival at their school.  Thankfully we got to skip the costumes for this one.  The kids both enjoyed playing games with their friends.


The Sunday before Halloween every year, our neighborhood has a big parade!  It consists of trailers full of kids in costume...not parade floats.  Our kids always ride with their friends (and their Daddy).  I have learned that it's more fun to sit on the side of the road and watch the parade (and collect the candy thrown at me!) than to actually be in it. 


We never get to stay for the parade after party because the Sunday before Halloween is also when our church has Trunk or Treat.  We rush over to the church parking lot to get our trunk decorated and ready for trick or treaters.  I only took one picture from Trunk or Treat!  This is the game we had our trunk - the kids got to drop a penny into the big jar of water and see if they could get it to land in the smaller jar in the bottom.  


From there, we rushed to a friend's house for a Halloween party, which I sadly took no pictures at! :(

Halloween fell on a Tuesday this year so we rushed home from work to get dressed up for the night.  Matt and I were both injured so it was a good thing we found some good doctors that make house calls.


In our neighborhood, the houses are a little spaced out so kids ride on trailers or four-wheelers or golf carts to go from house to house.  We piled back onto the parade trailer and go ready to go!


We were pulling up to the first house when the sprinkles started and the temperature dropped!  Our doctors added raincoats and hats to their ensembles and kept knocking on doors. 


We called it quits early this year since we were all cold and wet, but the kids had candy so they didn't seem to mind.  I immediately threw their costumes into the washing machine so they could wear them again to school the next day for All Saints Day.  One more day of costumes and then we could say goodbye to Halloween for a year! :)

A Day at Cedar Hill Farms

For the last few years, my Mom and I have made it a tradition to take the kids to Cedar Hill Farms while Matt and my Dad are away on their annual guys' trip.  It gives us something fun to do on Saturday and usually wears the kids out!  This year we were lucky enough to be there at the same time as some of our friends too.


The first pig races were getting ready to start when we arrived so we made our way there to get a seat with our buddies.


After the pig races, the kids jumped in line to be in the front of the tractor ride.


For tradition's sake, we had to take photos by the pumpkin growth chart.  Thomas couldn't even stand on his own his first time here!


With all the pumpkins and animals that the farm has to offer, my kids always love the play area the best.  I don't blame them...huge tunnel slides, tire swings, tether ball, zip line...I enjoy it all too!  We have learned that bringing a picnic lunch is the way to go and we set up at a table right by the play area so the kids can play and eat, play and eat.


We save the pumpkin patch for the end of our visit so we don't have to lug pumpkins around all day.  The kids get to pick a pie pumpkin to take with the price of their admission.


Near the pumpkin patch is also a really cool wooden pirate ship play area that the kids like to climb on.  


The weather warmed up after lunch so I was glad when we finally hopped on the trailer for a ride back to our car.  The kids and I were all ready to head home for naps!


Katie Wynn's Birthday

Once upon a time, I had a baby girl.  Then I blinked.  Once.  Ok, maybe twice.  And then all of a sudden, she was five.  FIVE.  A whole hand.  The last age before becoming a school kid.  The last size in toddler clothes.  How did this happen?!

We worked and worked to get the backyard playhouse finished in time for her birthday.  It was her biggest birthday gift and her party had no real theme except to have her friends over to play in the new playhouse.  It might be the most low-key party we've had to date.  The kids ran around in the backyard, Matt made street tacos for dinner, I ordered the cake for the first time ever, and we just had fun visiting with our friends.  

Special thanks to Beth for taking snapshots at the party for us!  Of course I made Katie Wynn a shirt for her party.  I asked her what she wanted on it and her requests were a big five, a cake, balloons, and grass.  Um, ok.  Amazingly, I was able to get all of her requests on the shirt except for the balloons.  I substituted bunting for those but I added the playhouse too so I think she was ok with it.  


At the last minute, I got a little nervous that none of the kids would want to play in the new playhouse, but they all went straight for it as they arrived in the backyard.  Phew!

After we ate Matt's delicious tacos, I called the kids around for a surprise.  


While at the dollar store earlier in the week, I had picked up cans of silly string for the party.  I knew most of the kids there (my own included) had never seen it before so we talked about what it was, the rules of playing with it (no spraying in faces!), and that it was just for fun.  


Once they figured out how to get it spraying, they all loved running around spraying it and being sprayed!

Dare I say the silly string was the highlight of the party?  Had I known that was gonna be the case, I could've saved a lot of money on that playhouse...

It wouldn't be a birthday party without cake!  After spending the better part of the month building the playhouse, I had zero energy left to bake a cake so I ordered one.  I sent the baker a picture of the paper plates I'd purchased and she made the cake match them perfectly!


This little girl is loved by a lot of people! 


I still can't believe my baby - the one I JUST had - is five years old.  Heck, I'm not even old enough to have a five year old, am I?! It's just as the saying goes, the days are long but the years, they sure are quick.  Love you lots and lots, baby girl.