Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Great Wolf

The last time we were at Great Wolf Lodge was almost three years ago when I was big and pregnant with Mason. The kids still talk about how much fun they had on that trip and even Gavin remembered certain things like the big bucket that dumps water every few minutes. We haven't been back until now because I just couldn't fathom how two parents could watch three little kids that wanted to go in different directions. Now that Mason is older, we decided to give it a try. This was part of Gavin and Cameron's birthday presents this year instead of having a big party. Oh my gosh, it couldn't have been any more fun! We went non-stop for two days at their indoor waterpark. Mason loved the little slides and the wave pool, and warming his feet in the kiddie hot tub. Gavin loved the lazy river and the medium sized slides the first day until we bribed him to go on the big slides and then that was all he wanted to do! Cameron loved all the slides and the boogie boarding. Jeremy and I just loved the gigantic smiles on the kids faces the whole time. I think this might just become an annual tradition for our family now that the kids are bigger and can do more. I'm ready to go again tomorrow!

Cameron on the boogie board
Gavin on the boogie board- this kid actually had some great moves even Jeremy and I couldn't do!

Wiped out after a long day.

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Our Nation's Capitol

While Lisa and her family were with us, we went downtown to see some monuments and museums, and to tour the Capitol. We ended up at the Lincoln Memorial and the American History Museum and also Union Station.. I saw some things I hadn't seen in DC before like the ruby slippers from the Wizard of Oz and C3PO and the newly preserved American flag that inspired the National Anthem. We also went on a tour of the Capitol which I had not done since I was in school where you now wear these headphones and follow a guide around. It was great to visit all of these neat places, but it was even better just spending time with the Allens and doing this with them. I'm so glad they made the trip up to see us.

That night, we went to do our annual drive through the Bull Run Festival of lights. Jeremy's trusty copper truck died this year but we sure were happy to be able to fit into Lisa and Jimmy's 12 passenger van!


We had a grand Thanksgiving this year. My sister Lisa and her family came to stay with us for a few days and we planned a big get together at our church. There were 27 of us total, including my sister Kristin's family, my mom, Jeff's parents, Pop Pop and sweet Angie and her kids who are just like family to me. We had quite the feast with way, way too much food, including turkey, ham, stuffing, mashed potatoes, sweet potatoes, corn pudding, jello salad, sweet and sour green beans, cranberry sauce, rolls, squash casserole, a slew of appetizers and at least six different desserts to choose from. It was definitely good eats! After dinner the kids did crafts and watched a movie and the adults had a rousing game of basketball. I must say I was surprised at some hidden talents, especially Jeremy's! I had no idea! I am so thankful for my family- even with our many quirks we somehow manage to stick together and have a great time with each other. I'm also thankful for Angie and her kiddos and for her hubby Jonathan in Iraq and all he does to protect our freedom. I am most richly blessed.

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Fall Swimming Finale

We are really fortunate to have an indoor pool right here at our clubhouse. We are even more fortunate to have them offer "swim team" at this pool during the off season months. Since Cameron loved being on swim team this summer I knew he would love to continue but for Gavin it was a bit more tricky. You had to be able to swim across the length of the pool without stopping in order to be on the developmental team. All summer we worked and worked and finally in August when we were down to the wire he made it across and then wanted to do it again and again! It was great to have both boys at the pool at the same time and only have to worry about Mason for an hour. They both loved it, but Gavin took some persuading. They keep the pool at anywhere from 80 to 83 degrees which was pretty cold to my little string bean. The poor kid just doesn't have any meat on his bones! He would sit there and shiver and chatter his little teeth until he was in tears. We tried a swim shirt to no avail, but one day another parent suggested a swim cap and that did the trick! He didn't complain about the water at all after that! I guess we really do lose most of our body heat through our heads! I worried about having Mason at the pool during lessons but it turned out I didn't have to worry at all. He stayed right by my side all season and never asked to get in the water. What an easy going kid, I sure love him. Today was their last day until the next session in January, and the boys were both sad to see it end. Their coaches were great and I noticed an improvement in both of them so it was definitely worthwhile. It will be nice to have a bit of a break though!
I just love how the cap made Gavin's face squish all up! He looks like Quasimodo!
Mason liked to check in to make sure Gavin was having a good time
Cam being a goof
Gavs and his teachers- Coach Jessica and Coach Rachel
Cameron's coach went into labor on the last day of practice so we didn't get a picture with her, but he loved Coach Sara!

Tuesday, November 9, 2010


Our little stuck in the middle turned five today. He woke up so happy and bouncy this morning, knowing that it would be a special day for him, and him alone. He picked pancakes for breakfast and had his little friend Owen over for a playdate. They played super heroes with the capes I made him (thanks Lynette!) and trucks with his new snowplow. We took cupcakes to swimming and then had dinner at Gavin's favorite restaurant- "The Golden Arches" with Grandma and Jeff. To top it all off we came home and had rocket cake and played with all of his new fancy toys. When I asked him tonight what the best part of his day was, he answered "the whole thing!" I think that means it was a success. I sure wish my kids would stop having birthdays and just stay the size they are. I hate that they grow up. Happy Birthday my little Gavs!

Field Trip and a Fiesta

Yesterday I got to be a chaperone on Cameron's field trip to the Blandy State Farm Arboretum. The kids went there to learn about plants and it really was a beautiful setting albeit a far trip on a bus with some very LOUD second graders. They planted some seeds and got up close and personal with various plants and trees. It was a lot of fun even though it was cold outside.

Then last night we had a little get together with four of Gavin's friends for his birthday. Since we are going on a family trip to Great Wolf Lodge at the end of the month between the boys birthdays, we scaled way back and just decided to have a small celebration, just pizza and a movie and some cake. We rented How to Train Your Dragon which I think is a really great movie. It kept the kids attention and everyone had a fun time. I don't think Gavin even realized that it wasn't a fancy party. Several times he exclaimed that I was "the best mom ever!" Way to make my heart melt, kid.