Sunday, May 23, 2010

Senior Night Out and Senior Sunday

Friday night we took our Juniors and Seniors for our annual Senior Night Out. A fun time was had by all! We always keep the location a surprise and this year we had them try to guess each stop we would make. They could ask questions to try to figure out the locations.

Here was the schedule:
4:15 Met at the church and loaded up on the bus.
5:15 Arrived at Sonic for a snack since we would have a late dinner later.
5:45 Miniature Golf at Adventure Land
8:00 Dinner at The Magic Time Machine
10:30 Whirlyball
12:00 Head back to Denison

Megan, Jordan, Ashlyn and I played miniature golf together. I was the high scorer. That never happens to me.

I had fun with you girls! I love you!

Robert, Nikki, Cina, and Zach playing close by.

Wes playing an intense game of Pac Man.

Waiting to be seated at The Magic Time Machine.

Wes and I and some of our group behind us waiting to chow down.

Our table and our lovely waitress, Tinkerbell.

Jordan and Captain Jack Sparrow.

Wes and I in the tee pee.

The graduates had to wear balloons around their heads.

That is a great look for you Aryn!

Cute Ariel!

You wear that well, Hayley!

Our whole gang minus Nikki and Wes who were taking the pictures.

Go Megan and Areil! For the record, the yellow team, (my team), won!

Robert, our lead scorer for the yellow team.

Zach, the ruthless player on the other team.

It is always hard to see a group graduate and leave the youth group, but at the same time I am so proud of them. I am excited about what lies ahead for them.

Today was Senior Sunday at church. I will sure miss our Seniors, and I can't believe that it is already time for them to leave the youth group. At the Senior Sunday luncheon I always get to read a children's book. This year I chose God's Dream by Archbishop Desmond Tutu.

We had a very small group this year. Jordan, Ariel, Shelby, Hayley, Ashlyn, and Zach. I love you all! Hayley and Ashlyn were some of my 4th grade students at Hyde Park years ago. Wow! Time flies!

Saturday, May 22, 2010

120 POINTS for Avery!

Last week Avery reached 120 AR points! AR stands for Accelerated Reader, a program that most schools in Texas have where children read books and earn points from the tests they take over the books. Most teachers help them set AR goals and require them to do a certain amount of reading on their own. Well, Avery loves to read (much like me) and has been leading her grade in AR points. Last year she won the Top Reader Award for having the most AR points and it has been her goal to do the same this year.

When students reach increments of 30 points they get to put a certain bug on the class sunflower in the school cafeteria. The principal makes a big deal about it. The student being honored gets to choose a cheer for the whole cafeteria to do for them. Whenever Avery gets to put another bug up Abby and I, (and Wes on occasion), go up to school and bring her lunch to help her celebrate.

Yay Avery! Proud of you, girl!

Putting her dragonfly on the class flower symbolizing her 120 AR points.

The principal had a meeting at the last minute so the school nurse did it. Thanks Janaga!

Preschool Field Day for Abby

Last Monday our preschool had Field Day for the two Pre-K classes. The director was even thoughtful enough to get a sub so that the teachers could take turns watching our kids compete. My classroom is also conveniently located right by the field where Field Day was held, so I was actually able to watch a lot.Wes got to be there for the festivities as well. I love that his job is flexible like that.

Abby won the shirt race (where you try on clothes and race).

Farewell Fun and Celebrations!

Last Saturday, we got together with my best friends and their families - the Rogers, McKissicks, and the other Rogers family. Sadly, that was the last time for us all to get together before the McKissick family goes back to Paraguay where they are missionaries. We had a great day of swimming, playing, eating Ashley's delicious teriyaki chicken, and catching up on each others' lives! We also got to celebrate Josh's birthday, Kendall's birthday and Baby Girl McKissick (who will be arriving in August)!

It is strange to think that the next time we are all together some of us will have teenagers!

We arrived first and the girls enjoyed playing with precious Kendall.

Best Friends! Love ya ladies!

Wes lovin' on Kendall. She is such a content cutie pie!

Bree will probably be taller then Alexis, Amy, and I next time we are all together again!

Emie won't be far behind.

Avery and Ginny. It is fun to see your kids play with kids of your childhood friends.

Abby and Micah. I wonder what they are up to?

All the adults enjoying our wonderful meal.

Thanks again Alexis and Ashley for hosting us all! We had a blast!

Friday, May 21, 2010

A Wonderful Mother's Day!

OK, so I know Mother's Day is long gone, but I am just now getting around to catching up on my blog.

I had a terrific Mother's Day, possibly the best Mother's Day yet. The day started off with lots of hugs, kisses, and several shouts of "Happy Mother's Day!" from Avery and Abby. We got ready and went to church where it is a tradition for the kids to go get carnations from the front for their mom during worship. Every year, the girls hand me flowers that look beautiful. However, by the end of worship, Avery's still looks pretty good but Abby's is wilted and torn because she has handled it so much. Oh well, it is the thought that counts, right?

Todd delivered a great sermon, as usual, on the blessings of mothers. It was very touching and it even brought tears to my eyes as I remembered what a HUGE blessing my own mother was to me. She taught me more than she will realize about how to be a good mom. She "trained us up in the Lord" for sure, and for that I will be eternally grateful. It is hard to believe that it has been nearly 4 years since she passed away.

After church we headed to Taco Bueno with some friends. You might laugh, but that was my choice. I love Bueno, and we were planning on having a big dinner with Wes' family later. Wes asked if I would mind going with some good friends of ours. I did not mind at all. I was glad I got to share such a great day with wonderful friends.

When we got home the girls gave me their presents. Abby had made a book called "My 5 Favorite Things About Mom". It was super cute!
Here is the run down:
5. She makes the yummiest breakfast. (We often have breakfast for dinner around here.)
4. She lets me do fun activities.
3. She is the best reader.
2. She is the most beautiful mom.
1. She is the sweetest mom in the world!
(There was an illustration across the page from each sentence.)

Avery gave me a bound book her class put together. She got to help design the cover and had a super sweet entry in it about me.

The also both gave me some very nice cards. It felt good to be appreciated and loved. When I was in high school I began to pray that I would marry a youth minister or missionary. I also knew that I wanted to be a mom someday. I feel so blessed to be the mom of Avery and Abby. What awesome gifts from God! I know these years will pass by quickly and I am just trying to enjoy being their mom and raising them the way God would have me to. I pray for His wisdom all the time. I am looking forward to this summer when we will have even more time together with out all the distractions of school and other activities.

Wes gave me a very sweet card and had let me go shopping earlier in the week. Thanks Honey for helping me in this parenting role and for helping me keep sane at times! I could not do it without you!

A couple hours later we headed to Blake and Katy's house where we had fun hanging out with Nana, Paw Paw, Granny, and Tripp too. At one point Tripp was intent on hugging the girls extra hard over and over again. It was too cute. We shared a delicious dinner out to celebrate together. (Eating out twice in one day, what a treat!)

Mother's Day was, indeed, a GREAT DAY!

Tuesday, May 04, 2010


This past weekend we went camping with 26 people from our small group. We had a wonderful time! We had been planning to go to Beaver's Bend for a while. As the weekend approached we kept an eye on the forecast and realized that there was a possibility of thunderstorms and maybe even tornadoes. We immediately began to pray for better weather. Well, God had a different plan altogether for us. The weather was still looking bad, so on Thursday we scrambled to find another location. Wes knew we needed to head south and west to avoid bad weather. We decided to head to Possum Kingdom. We arrived there Friday evening right before dark and set up camp securing three sites right next to each other with a beautiful view of the lake. We were also right next to the bathrooms and a playground which we knew would be ideal for all the little kids.

Our home away from home. We were pleased with our new tent purchase. After lots of research we settled on this Coleman tent at Sam's.

We let the girls stay up late along with the other kids that night, so they were nice and tired and fell right to sleep in their cozy princess sleeping bags. We adults stayed up playing Things in a Box which can be a pretty hilarious game.

The next morning the girls woke pretty early - around 7:15. Somehow I knew that would happen with all the light peaking through our tent and the excitement of camping with our friends.

Wes and I made breakfast tacos with eggs and sausage. Yum! Soon after breakfast some of us headed to the lake. We skipped rocks and watched some of the men fish for a bit. Then we decided to go on a hike up the hill behind where we camped. It was an adventure keeping up with all the little ones, watching out for low branches and sharp cactus needles. I couldn't help think about Trek when we were doing this. I wonder if the girls will want to go on Trek when they get older.

About to head up the mountain.

BFF's - Abby and Sybil.

Braden trying to push the boulder up. Too cute!

Our little hikers looking at the beautiful view below.

I love that my girls love to camp and be outdoors!

Our dear friends, the Slechta's. They are having to move soon and we are not happy about this. Thankfully, it is not too far. We plan to get together often.

After the hike the kids went to the playground to swing, slide, and play in the sand with some sand toys for hours and hours. The adults had a washer tournament. Wes made it a point to bring this fun outdoor game along. I actually beat Rachel and advanced to the second round. But then Sterling beat me very badly. It made me feel better when he ended up winning the whole tournament. Wes came in 3rd place. Woo hoo!

I must beat Rachel!

My silly victory dance!

Wes is very serious here.

We had fun telling them to ask the magic 8 ball questions like
"Will Nikki win the washers game?"

Nikki, I guess, is not happy with her washer toss.

Having some fun watching the washer tournament.

Sterling - 1st Place
Jesse - 2nd Place
Wes- 3rd Place
Good job guys!

Me, Nikki, Jennifer, and Rachel - Good times!

The kids were content playing in the sand and on the playground for several hours.

After lunch some of us headed to the lake and the kids even got in. I thought the girls would have fun wading up to their knees in the very cold water. Nope! They got in all the way, and so did the other kids. Brrrrr!

We decided to go for a canoe ride after bit. We had a great time going around part of the lake. People probably thought we were crazy when we joined Abby in her made up song with nonsense words.

Thankfully we did not tip into the cold water.

Barry and Jennifer - Love you both!

Hanging out!

Sweet Shelby and Avery.

Abby didn't want to take her bathing suit off when we got back. I don't know, maybe her bathing suit helps her climb trees better.

Nikki was brave letting Abby wear her sunglasses.

Girl with an attitude!

Smile, Avery!

Avery and Ava playing with the kid's washer game. I am pretty sure Avery is copying Sterling's "granny throw". Hey, it worked for him, so maybe it will work for her, too.

Wes taking a turn on Jesse's guitar.

Sybil's turn.

Both girls adore Nikki!

Abby: "I wear a size 3!" (This is funny because she really wears a 5T)
Nikki: "Well can I have a size 3 hug?"
Abby: "No... You can have a size TEN hug!!"

What are you up to?

For dinner we cooked hot dogs over the campfire and made s'mores for dessert. We played another game of washers with partners. Thankfully Wes was on my team. We won one game and lost another. Sorry I wasn't much help, Babe.

Nothing like a good s'more! (Notice how filthy Abby is!)


Lick it, Abby!

As soon as it got dark we put the kids to bed. We sang songs while Jesse played his guitar (my favorite was The Catfish Song - where you make up your own verses), told stories, and played Two Truths and a Load of Hooey. Next time I will take a pad of paper to write my lyrics for The Catfish Song. I just can't think of a funny rhyme in the spur of the moment.

The next morning we cooked pancakes. We added M&M's to the girls for a special first time treat. I have a feeling they will be expecting these all the time now. I will not give in.

After breakfast we broke down camp and packed up. We had a devo with our whole group underneath the shade of the trees. It brought such joy to my heart worshiping with my close friends and watching the kids as they sang along to the songs. Abby and Avery were not too shy to start a few of the kid's songs.

I feel so blessed to be a part of this church family and to have such a great group of friends! I love them dearly. Thank you God for giving us these relationships! We were missing some families, but hopefully they can join us next time. We plan to do it again real soon.

Love you all!

All the kids minus Shelby. Where did she go?

Thanks Aaron and Janet for letting us borrow some of your camping gear! We thoroughly enjoyed using it all! We will probably be on the look out for a camp stove, air mattress, and lantern real soon before our next camping expedition. If anyone knows where to get some great deals on these items let us know!

A special "thank you" to Nikki for taking some great pictures that I used for this post. She is an amazing photographer. If you are in the area she is up for hire. She is extremely talented! Jennifer, can't wait to see your pictures. I am sure I will be using some of those pictures, too. You ladies should give me some lessons.

P.S. Last night we had the high schoolers over for our weekly devo when we got a text from Janaga to check out the rainbow outside. We all went outside to witness the beautiful rainbow that God gave us. Afterward, we went in and Wes led us in a prayer thanking God for His promises and His beauty.

This picture doesn't do it justice, that rainbow lit up the sky! You don't see a full rainbow very often. Thanks God!

Abby lost her first tooth a while ago! Wow! My baby is growing up! She is only 5 and 3 months old. Seems early, but it was definitely loose. At dinner Avery told her she would pull it for her if Abby would pay her a dollar! Wes pulled it for her quickly. He is our official tooth puller around here. I will have the babies and he can pull their teeth. I feel like he gets the better end of the deal.

Right out of the shower, wet hair and all. She was excited!