The End of Tball

The end of Connor's tball season was last week. It was something he really enjoyed and wants to do again. And he got better as the season went on. Though, I had to laugh when at the team party, his coach described him as "the most aggressive outfielder who went for every ball and had to be held back so others could get the ball too." Connor seriously went for every single last ball no matter where he was on the outfield. And the funny part was, many times he would get it. And, a few times it ended in him and other team mates tackling each other for the ball.  

Every week the coach gave out a pack of baseball cards to the player of the day. It killed Connor every week that he didn't get the cards. Obviously I realized they were eventually going to give one to each player, but Connor didn't get that. When he finally got his cards, he was so dang proud and excited. Also, at the last game, every kid got a pack of cards for being a team player. Connor has been playing with those baseball cards so much and sleeping with them on his bed. 

 ^^ Throwing to first…Connor would actually count the number of times he got the ball in outfield during a game and tell me at the end. I was impressed that he could remember. 

^^ This is one of those melt my mama heart pictures…giving dad a high five after making it to first base.  A lady from another team actually made fun of our team for the fact that all the dads would go out on the field during the games. But I thought it was so cool that so many dads wanted to help out. 

^^ It was kind of my favorite watching Connor crouch in this position while playing outfield. 

^^ The day Connor got the pack of baseball cards for being player of the day. 

I have to admit, I wasn't too keen on having Connor play tball because it is such a commitment. But seeing how much he loved it and how much pride he had in it made me glad he got to play. And really, it wasn't ever him that was the problem at games, really just his dramatic sister. But we all survived and I am a believer and will be letting him play again next year if he wants. 

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Preschool Graduation - times two

Okay, so Isla didn't really graduate, she was promoted. But she had a little party, got a certificate and walked the stage, so I am going to call it a graduation. Isla's graduation started with a pizza party right after the last day of school. Then there was a slideshow of pictures throughout the year. It was really cute because all the kids were really excited and would yell the name of whoever's picture was on the screen. They were also singing along to the songs in the sideshow. After that, the teachers called up the kids to get their certificates, then they all stood on stage together. After Isla was standing up on stage, she called to me in the crowd "Mom! Take my picture!". So I obliged. And that was followed up with a "Let me see it!" I like that she is getting into the whole picture taking thing, but it is certainly on her terms and generally when I want to take a picture, she doesn't!

 ^^ Isla getting a hug from her favorite teacher, Janet…or as Isla calls her "Princess Janet". She has even played "teacher Janet" at home, so I know Janet must be really special to her. 

^^ The whole class. Isla is in the top row, third from the left.  

^^ And this would be an instance when Isla thought it was funny not to cooperate with a picture. She refused to look at the camera, hence her teacher holding her face. I love these ladies and have enjoyed the past two years with them. I am going to miss not seeing them. 

Connor had his graduation on Thursday night. It was more of an affair. All four Pre-K classes graduated together. It was in the church sanctuary. All the teachers were all dressed up. It was fun to see them like that. In fact, when we walked in, Connor just stopped and stared at one of his teachers. She said, "I know you are used to seeing me in yoga pants, but it really is me." Hahaha!

Connor's graduation started out with a slideshow of pictures from the year. Then, they had the kids graduate by class. When it was their turn, the kids individually walked across the stage, hugging each of their teachers and getting something from each - their diploma, a personalized book of pictures from the year and a cd of the slideshow. Afterward, there was a dessert reception and my kids spent tons of time running around with their friends from school.

 ^^ I know this picture is blurry and not in focus, but I still totally love it. I love how much these ladies loved on my boy over the past year. 

I so love the preschool that the kids go to…or Connor went to. It is just such a loving and nurturing environment. The teachers really do care and are so invested in the kids. I look forward to Isla being there next year and am excited that she is going to have the same set of teachers that Connor had this year. Not only do they rock, but Isla already knows them from being with me when we dropped off and picked Connor up.

And after me posting more than you ever wanted to read about preschool over the past week, just like that, it is over…until next year, that is! And if you didn't keep up, I wrote about my feelings on Connor's last week of school, I posted their last day of school photos and I posted pictures of them with their diplomas. Okay, I'm done.

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Connor: And just like that, Connor is done with preschool. It has been such a great experience for him. But, he is also super excited for kindergarden to start in the fall. 

Isla: She has her first year of preschool under her belt. She made some friends, loves her teachers and actually managed to go to school the last couple weeks without any drama…she normally hated being dropped off, but was fine as soon as I left (I always listened outside until she calmed down, which usually took about a minute). 

"A portrait of my children, once a week, every week, in 2015."

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A Peter Rabbit Garden Party

One day this past week, my friend's mom hosted a Peter Rabbit garden party for her three kids and Connor and Isla. This party is the stuff dreams (and pinterest) are made of. She seriously covered every detail. It started a couple weeks prior with the handmade invitation that arrived in our mailbox. Though the kids were between 1.5 and 5, they got to use real china! The older ones even did a great job handling the teapot (full of apple juice) for themselves and the younger ones.

After the kids had time to eat and mingle with each other, it was time for the reading of Peter Rabbit. Then there was the little hunt around the garden. Next up? Pin the tail on Peter Rabbit, of course! Complete with a watercolor of Peter Rabbit, painted by the host herself.

^^ The kids seemed a little unsure of having their eyes covered, but Connor somehow managed to get the tail right where it needed to be without cheating. I was pretty impressed…with his luck.

After the game, the kids each got to plant a flower to take home. And there was croquet set up on the lawn…which the boys had a grand ole time using the mallets to pop all the balloons that had been up as decoration. Then, the party ended with the kids having plenty of time playing with the real chickens and rabbits in the backyard.

It was such a great time. It was fun seeing the kids all dressed up and enjoying themselves as well. And cheers to Trina for being so interest-worthy, when I myself am nothing of the sort.

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The Last Day of School

It's so weird that it's already the end of the school year. I swear this year flew by. It seems like just a couple weeks ago that the kids were starting school. Yet, I look at those pictures from then and can't believe how much they have grown.

Connor finally realized on Tuesday night that preschool was over and I could tell he was bummed. He thought that they were just taking a little break, then that he would go back again before kindergarden starts in the fall. He loves his teachers so much (and so do I). I'm so glad I didn't do something crazy like stand in the middle of his classroom sobbing and clinging on to one of the teachers. But, he certainly talked the ear off of his favorite teacher and I could tell really didn't want to leave. He told me on Tuesday about that teacher, "I just love her so much." He still gets to see all of his teachers again tonight for his graduation, so that's good. Plus, kindergarden gets out before preschool, so he will always be with me when I pick Isla up from school next year.

Just like at the beginning of the year, Connor wants to be a police officer. He actually specifically said a "swamp police officer". Though I know sometimes he talks about being a "country" police officer. And he always says he wants to be a night time police officer.

Unlike Connor, Isla didn't care much that it was her last day of school. Though, she was really excited to give her teachers their gifts and unwrapped them for each of them! And, well, Isla has high hopes of being Elsa when she grows up. That actually cracks me up because we literally haven't watched Frozen in a couple months, but Isla is still pretty dang obsessed with Elsa. Isla had her little graduation ceremony and pizza party right after school yesterday. She had fun playing and running around with her friends. But I will talk more about that later, as I think I am going to post about both kids "graduations" together.

Now that the last day of school is behind us, we can work on getting our summer on! I am imagining some pretty blissful mornings in our pjs over the next few days…if only the kids would sleep in so I could too! Wishful thinking.

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Connor's Last Week of Preschool

It's weird to me that Connor's time at preschool has already come to an end. Sure, it was just for two years. But it has been a significant time of growth for us. I remember how nervous I was two years ago about leaving Connor with total and complete strangers for two mornings a week. How would he do? What if something happened? Would his teachers be able to get a hold of me? Would he make friends? Would he get in trouble? Would he enjoy himself?

Low and behold, preschool was Connor's jam. He is such a social guy and loves being around other kids. His teachers his first year were the most loving and kind teachers ever. They are three ladies that have been teaching together for more than a decade. They are true friends of each other and it is so fun to watch them walk into the school together, chatting away. I digress. These teachers made me feel so comfortable and eased all my fears. It was even one of those teachers that convinced me to start Isla a year earlier than I started Connor.

Then this year, Connor has learned and grown so much. His teachers are equally as amazing this year, but different than last. They are fun. They are encouraging. They never seem to bat an eye and Connor's ball of energy self. They taught him how to write. They laugh with me at his quirks. They truly seem to love and enjoy him.

The idea of leaving such a nurturing and loving environment is hard for me. It's sad and scary because it is all we have known. And, though Connor is super excited about kindergarden, he also has a lot of questions. Will there be snack time? We have discussed this one a lot lately and I told him he will have to learn to eat a really big breakfast and that I will let him eat as soon as he gets home. What about show and tell? I don't know. And he doesn't like that answer because "how can there not be show and tell?!"

The last two years have been so incredibly awesome, both for Connor and for me. I know next year will be great. But I think of what preschool is like and think that will certainly be hard to beat.

P.S. Isla will be in the class Connor is currently in next year, so I don't have to say goodbye to those teachers yet. But I have joked (but kind of seriously) that I am signing myself up for the younger class so I don't have to leave those teachers behind quite yet. 

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And Blueberry Picking Season Has Begun!

I seriously love taking the kids out and going fruit picking. We've been blueberry, strawberry and apple picking numerous times. I just find it so fun. And so do the kids. Sure, Isla is still at the age that she wants to eat all that she picks. But it's clean (organic) and fresh. And the kids love being out in the sun and playing in the dirt. And I love coming home with a bunch of fresh, not to mention cheap, fruit.

When I saw that our favorite blueberry farm was opening for the season this past weekend, I knew we had to go. Connor remembers it from last year and was completely on board. I mean, there is a small putt putt golf thing there, a bounce house, a play structure and a boat in the middle of blue sand. It's a bit like a kids paradise. Of course, we make them wait to play until after the blueberries are all picked. Otherwise it would never happen!

 ^^ Connor took his blueberry picking responsibility very serious. He picked only the blue ones and did such a good job of not eating too many. 

 ^^ Isla, on the other hand, ate everything she picked, then tried coming after our buckets, but we kept her away. 

We managed to come home with almost five pounds of blueberries. Ian joked that would last us a day. But seriously, we go through blueberries and really any fruit at an insane rate in our house. And Connor is already planning on going back next weekend. I always say we are going to freeze some of the blueberries we pick, but they really don't ever last long around our house, so that never ends up happening. But maybe this is the year, now that Connor is fully on board with picking blueberries and not just eating them!

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Connor: This little boy just loves life. Even playing tball, he makes sure to have fun…skipping between bases, playing with the chalk lines on the field and talking to the other kids while in out field. 

Isla: She is such a fair weather girl. She complains if it is too cold and she complains if it is too hot. She really would be happy if it was in the 70's year round. Maybe we should move to Hawaii, you know, just to help her out ;)

"A portrait of my children, once a week, every week, in 2015."

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Summer Bucket List

I've never made a summer bucket list before. And really, even without one, we always get out and do things. But I like the idea of having this hanging on our frig and making each one a special thing for the kids and letting them cross them off as we get them done. Most of these are already activities we do, but I did throw in a couple things we wouldn't normally do, just to make it special. And hopefully our from seed watermelon plants don't disappoint us because they made the list and no matter how big or small, we want to eat a home grown watermelon this year! Touring the cheese factory is a random one, but it is only 30 minutes from our house and Connor asked how cheese is made, so I thought it would be a fun little excursion. Though I can't believe next week is the kids last week of school, I am excited for all the fun, leisure and friend time that summer brings.

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