Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Kennedie's First Day of Pre-School

Today was a big day in our house!  Kennedie started Pre-School!

We woke Kennedie up with a special surprise of donuts to go along with her fruit smoothie.  We had fun talking all about what she would do during the day at school.  We got her dressed and then took some pictures to document this exciting day.

LOVE this one!  It was supposed to be a silly face one-- Sawyer was trying! Ha!

We then prayed over Kennedie and headed up to the school.  She was totally fine until we got there.  Once we were there all she wanted was her Daddy to hold her.  She started crying and getting really upset.  We tried to calm her down as best we could, but knew that we would probably just make it worse by trying to pacify her.  I took a picture of her cubby & of her & her sweet teacher Mrs. Jennifer: 

Kennedie is very blessed to have Mrs. Jennifer as a teacher this year.  Mrs. Jennifer is currently her Bible school teacher on Sunday morning.  This quarter at Bible school Kennedie has loved being in Mrs. Jennifer's class.  Talk about a HUGE blessing and an easy transition for Kennedie!

Bless her heart!  It was too sad.  We gave her kisses and said goodbye, and then left.  A few minutes later another mom came out and let me know that she stopped crying and was playing with some toys. Whew!

Sawyer and I then headed home to a few hours all by ourself!  I think both of us were unsure what to do without Kennedie, but we surely did enjoy some alone time together.

 I had lunch duty today at Kennedie's school to help, and when I showed up she was in a great mood!  When it was time for her to leave the lunch room she lined right up with her class and walked right on out without a second thought.

I actually decided that I would pick her up early this year from school.  It's not supposed to get out until 2:30, but I decided I'd pick her up at nap time at 1:30 and take her home to sleep.  She is still sleeping for 2 to 2 & 1/2 hours, so I didn't want her to get woken up early and be grumpy.  {Not only that she is still with me for 5 other days in the week & I don't want her to only be sleeping for 30 minutes to an hour!}

Kennedie was very excited that she got to paint today.  They talked about how red and yellow mixed together make orange.  Fun!

Right now both the girls are passed out asleep.  I think all in all it was a great day!

Thursday, August 22, 2013

New York Day 3

I know, I know... I'm kinda slacking on this whole blogging thing.  I'm trying.  I'm just proud I'm documenting-- even if it's late & sporadic!

DAY THREE (4th of July)

We woke up early & headed out to breakfast at Norma's.  This was an amazing restaurant that was recommended to us by some good friends.  It's located inside the Le Parker Meridien Hotel.  It was definitely more than we typically spend on breakfast (but isn't everything in NY?), but it was worth it!  The taste was outta this world & the portions were HUGE!  Lantz & I split and we were plenty full! We got the crunchy French toast covered in warm caramel sauce!  Here is Lantz's plate, mine looked the same...

After breakfast we headed over to Starbucks to grab a coffee.  We took some pictures by a LOVE statue & fountain... you know just being touristy....

We then rented bicycles to ride around Central Park for a few hours.  Yes... hours.  I didn't realize how HUGE Central Park really is.  That was probably one of the biggest shockers for me.... it's like 840 acres or something crazy like that!  We rented bikes for 4 hours & had a blast!  We just rode around & enjoyed checking out the scenery.  (Small world- we actually ran into someone biking also that Lantz went to LCU with.  Her & her husband were on vacation too.  What are the odds?)

Huge lake/pond?? in the middle of the park

While we were riding our bikes we stopped at the MET (Metropolitan Museum of Art).  We walked through the museum for a little while & check out some cool stuff.  We especially liked the Egyptian section:

We returned out bikes and then went to FAO Schwarz and the Apple store.

We then hopped on the Uptown tour and then caught the Bronx tour and saw Yankee Stadium & Harlem.

We then headed back to the Times Square location for dinner.  We ended up eating at Tony's DiNapoli.  We were a little skeptical because it seemed touristy, but it was delicious!  It was family style, so we had plenty to eat!  We had chicken breasts stuffed with mozzarella & prosciutto and topped with basil, sauce, mushrooms & zucchini & it all came with some bread!

We then went back to our hotel to change into some July 4th attire & then headed to the Top of the Rock.  We got up to the top and got great standing spots for the fireworks.  We were front and center for an amazing show!  It really was a once in a lifetime opportunity.  Granted we got up there at 6:50 and the show didn't start until 9:30... but it really was worth it!  We got up at the perfect time.  We were front row and within 15-20 minutes people started stacking behind us and beside us.

After the fireworks we decided we would definitely get some dessert again.  We ended up at Shake Shack again since it was pretty close to our hotel & we had a great first experience.  Lantz got Jelly's Last Donut custard{what I ordered 2 days previous}, and I got a peanut butter & chocolate milkshake.  And let me tell you- that thing was RICH!  I got a small and couldn't finish it off because it was too rich for me.  It was good, but rich!

All in all we had an amazing third day of our vacation!

Thursday, August 15, 2013

Sawyer is 18 Months

It's crazy how fast time flies when you are having fun!  And fun we are having!  This 18 month old has really started to be much more action packed!  It's crazy to me that today marks the halfway point to {dare I say it?} .... two?  I am just not ready to even think about my baby getting older.  Today is hard enough.  I feel like daily she is becoming more and more of a toddler and less of a baby... even though she'll always be my baby.

Sweet girl:

- You are still crazy about balls!  I think you really will end up being our athlete!  I love that they make you so happy and that you point them out anytime you see them.  You always want your hand on one if they are anywhere in site.
- You have barely been catching little cat naps in the morning, but still sleeping for about 2 to 2 & 1/2 and even sometimes 3 hours in the afternoon.
- You are still in a phase of wanting someone to hold you most of the time.  You really don't like it if Mommy or Daddy is holding you & we have to set you down for a minute.
- This month even more than last month you have really loved playing with baby dolls.  You will pick them up and rock them and say "Shhhhhhhh, shhhhhhhh." (Not sure if your are telling us to "shh" because the baby is sleeping or if you are telling the baby "shhh" because she is "crying.")  It's all too precious.
-Speaking of babies, you really have started pointing and grunting a lot at real babies.  I'm not sure if it's good or bad... I think it's because you want to see it!
- You have started to get very mad if Kennedie is playing with something and you want it.  It's hard for you to understand why you can't play with something if your sister is playing with it first.  The sibling fights have already started!
- You and Kennedie have started to hold hands some while walking and it just absolutely melts my heart so much.
- The other day I was editing some pictures and so I let you & your sister watch Curious George for a few minutes.  Well, it got curiously quiet and so I peeked my head in on you two and you were asleep in your sister's lap.  This was probably the sweetest thing my eyes have seen as a Mommy.  Your little head was laying right in your sisters lap and she was playing with your hair and you were sound asleep.  It was a moment I wish I could have bottled up to save forever.
- You are still not talking much at all.  You will say "eye" and point to an eye now though, and you'll say "peek-a-boo."  Getting you to talk has been very difficult.  You want nothing of it.  You are only into pointing and grunting or shaking your head "yes" or "no."  However, it seems you completely understand everything that we say to you.  You are one smart little girl!
- You have really started eating more and more fruit this month.  At first I thought maybe you'd be more picky than your sister, but your tastebuds have started really opening up lots more to different fruits this month.
- You are still showing lots more interest in books!  It's so cute to watch you open them up and "read."
-You have especially loved being outside this month & I notice that you sometimes get mad when it's time to come in.
-Your feet have really grown this month.  You outgrew your size 4 sandals and skipped size 5 all together.  You are currently in a size 6!  Yes, a size 6!  Your sister barely outgrew a size 6 in the spring!  I think you are going to be one tall girl!
-You have started screaming "Ma" or "Mamamama" around the house.  It's like you are a teenager saying, "Mom!?"  I love it!

My darling little girl, I can't even begin to put into words how much love my heart has for you.  You are such a sweet little girl and I love that you will still let me steal little snuggles & cuddles from you.  I love the little sparkle in your eye and the sweet way you look down and try not to smile when people are looking at you.  You are just the sweetest little thing ever.  Thank you for still showering me with the best little open mouth kisses and for loving me.  I thank God daily for picking me to be your Mommy.  I love you so much Sawyer Sue. 

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

New York Day One & Two

So, I pretty much have the most amazing husband ever.  Seriously.  For my 30th birthday this year Lantz surprised me with a trip to New York!!!  It was such a fun surprise!!

On Sunday night June 30th, we had gotten one pizza, but there were two pizza boxes and I didn't know why.  He told me to open them.  One had airplane tickets & broadway show tickets in it!  HUGE surprise for me.  He told me to pack my bags because we were leaving first thing Tuesday morning {July 2nd- my 30th birthday}.  He had already arranged his mom to come watch the girls & other family member and friends to drop in and help.  SO awesome!

We got up super early on Tuesday morning & caught our flight to NY.  Happy Birthday me!  Here we are on the plane:

We took a bus to the Port Authority stop for only $16.  I would totally recommend this- it appears to be the most cost effective- plus it took us right to where we needed to be.  We were let out pretty much at Times Square which was super crazy!  There were SO many people.  At first I was like, "Oh great... what have we gotten ourselves into?"

We found our hotel (one block off of Times Square) & then checked in.  We stayed at Millennium Hotel.  It was nice.... our room was super nice.  The lobby was not very welcoming though... kinda reminded me of the mob.... dark.  It was cool to be only one block off though-- and Lantz got a GREAT deal from Groupon on it.  Here is the view from our room:

We then proceeded to find food.  I was starving.  It was like 3 something and I hadn't eaten since breakfast.  We heard super amazing things about John's Pizza and it wasn't too far from our hotel so we walked down a few blocks to eat there.  It totally did not disappoint... it was SOOOO good.  It's not a pay by the slice place-- it's a sit down, nicer pizza place.   I would totally recommend it!

After pizza we just walked around for a little while.  We ended up at Rockefeller Center & in front of NBC.  Pretty cool!

We then headed back to our hotel to get ready for our broadway show.  Lantz bought us Lion King tickets!  It was one of the best shows I've ever seen!  It completely did not disappoint.  I'm so glad that we went to see it!  The costumes were incredible!

After the show we walked down to the Shake Shack to get some dessert.  This place was packed!  It was neat though- they had a line for just people who wanted dessert, so we got to bypass the long line.  Lantz got a fair trade mocha milkshake, and I got a "Jelly's Last Donut" custard {vanilla custard with donut chunks, strawberry jelly, and cinnamon & sugar)-- yummy!

We went back to the hotel & then polished off the leftover pizza!

It was such a fun birthday and a great first day in New York!

We got up pretty early and went to buy some hop-on, hop-off bus passes from City Sights so that we could see the city & really get a feel for it.  My friend who lives in NY recommended this to me & it really was great!  We bought the all city pass so that we could see all of NY & go though all different parts of it, & that really was great.

We started off by hopping on the Downtown tour.  It was fun to just ride around on a double decker bus with ear phones & look at everything while the tour guide told you neat kinds of history.  It really helped us learn our way around the city.  It's a neat tour because anytime you wanted to see something you could just get off and see what you wanted to see and then catch the next bus running (normally like 10- 15 minutes apart).  Here are some pictures from our bus.... I was such a tourist!!  No shame!

We eventually got off at Ground Zero to see the 9/11 memorial.  Having taught a 9/11 unit when I was in the classroom it was very surreal to be there.  It was a very touching memorial and a reminder of that awful day and how blessed we are to have the freedom we have.  The memorial consists of two large water fountains in the "footprints" of where the buildings stood.  All around the sides of the fountains are the names of those that lost their lives that day.

It was also neat to hear about the new World Trade Center complex that they are currently working on and also the museum that will be under the ground in between the two fountains.  It was also cool to see the Freedom Tower or the One World Trade Center.  It's currently the tallest building in the Western Hemisphere.

And of course the fire station beside the World Trade Center:

After experiencing the 9/11 memorial we ate at a little cafe beside the fire station, Esseux Cafe.  We split a chicken parmesan  panini and berry smoothie.  We then headed to check out Trinity Church & the financial district on Wall Street. We saw Federal Hall where George Washington was inaugurated as the first President.

We then walked down to Battery Park & caught a little tour boat that went with our City Sights bus tour.  It was great!  We were able to see the Manhattan skyline, Ellis Island, the Statue of Liberty, the Brooklyn Bridge and the Manhattan bridge.

We then decided to hop on the bus tour of Brooklyn which was really cool!  I don't think either of us had it on our radar to tour Brooklyn, but it was really cool to see the city.  After the Brooklyn tour we actually hopped back on the Downtown tour and finished it up.  {I may or may not have fallen asleep on the end of that tour..... I was worn out!}  By this point we were pretty hungry and so we went to Carnegie Deli and split the Woody Allen sandwich (pastrami & corned beef).  It was really yummy & the portion size was out of control!  Lantz & I both were stuffed!

We then headed over to Rockefeller Center to buy tickets for the Top of the Rock.  We were planning on going up that night, but it started raining so we got tickets for the 4th of July at sunset.  We were pumped that the tickets were not more money since it was the 4th.  Almost everywhere cost a fortune to go up during the fireworks.  It was neat that Top of the Rock didn't raise their prices just for the fireworks!

We walked around a bit more and then decided that we wanted to go back to Carnegie Deli to tackle that delicious cheesecake that was calling our name while we were there.  So we split the strawberry cheesecake & it did not disappoint!  So yummy!

We ended the night by walking around Times Square a little more & people watching.

All in all it was a jam-packed, super-fun second day in New York!