This is not my favorite picture at all (definitely won't be our Christmas card ;)), but this was how we did it. Collins in the carrier on me and John Burke on Heath's back. We are such hikers!
The "big boys" - H has a little brother, J that is just 2 weeks younger than Collins. I don't know how I didn't get any pictures of him?! He hiked on his daddy's back as well!
Resting after playing hard at a park in Franklin, North Carolina
On our longer hike - we climbed to the top of a huge rock and saw some waterfalls! We are definitely beach people, but this made me think we could be mountain people too. SK - the other mom and trip planner extraordinaire - had the meals set up and we made grocery lists and shopped before we went. We put the kids down each night and then had great dinners and played cards on the back porch. So relaxing and enjoyed by all! I am sold on the mountains for sure!
Anyway, a week or so after we got back school started back at Covenant. This year Turner is in the 3s - so he goes three days a week now. Here he is with his sweet teachers, Catherine and Carrie.
Not sure what that face is, but the last 3 times I have picked him up he has said "I was having very fun!" Hmm, close enough. He walked right into his new class and hasn't looked back. He had about 6 other kids from his old class (including his best buddy H from our mountain adventure), so he hasn't had to really adjust at all. Phew.
This cat is a different story. Wow - I am feeling every bit of him being 2 years old! He has officially moved upstairs to "big school" and out of Mother's Day Out. He goes on Wednesdays and Fridays. He was fortunate to get Turner's teachers from last year, who I LOVE - but he wasn't quite as excited about the first day as his brother. Can you tell by his face here?
For a few weeks I have been trying to get him excited about Big School (the Day School). He is quite comfortable downstairs in Mother's Day Out with his favorite ladies - Dee, Kina, Shaneka, Tinecia, Wanda...the list goes on. They spoil him rotten. Side story - there was a Kentucky Fried Chicken a few miles from the bottom of the mountain by us in North Carolina. We pulled in the shopping center one day to grab something from a local Dollar Tree and John Burke started going nuts! He started screaming "Kicken! kicken!!" (I am constantly guessing what he is saying in this phase of life...chicken). He started jumping up and down with excitement and pointing to the KFC sign. "MAMA!!! Kicken!! Can we get some?? Now!! Der! Daddy!!!" Heath and I started laughing because we have never taken him to KFC, I don't even know where there are any in Birmingham. You know where he gets it?? His ladies mentioned earlier - they spoil him and bring him fried chicken, mashed potatoes and gravy, vegetables etc. when they bring in their own meals. Ridiculous.
Anyway, all that to say - he was not ready to leave his safe place down in MDO. I kept asking him each day who his new teachers were (Meg and Abby) - one time he said Meg, but every time he would smile and say "Tina" (Kina). Every time I would say NO that is Collins' teacher this year...Kina teaches the babies..you are a big boy. But every time he would insist he was staying with Kina.
In the Chick-fil-A drive-thru line on the first morning of school I was trying to get him excited one last time. I leaned back, looked at him and said "Are Meg and Abby your teachers this year? Yay!" He looked at me, dead in the eye and said "Kina my teacher. Dammit." Wow. He said it in context. No words.
Anyway, I couldn't get a cute picture of him with his 2 sweet teachers because he was screaming and crying and clawing my shirt. But I did capture this action shot with his teacher Meg, it will have to do.
A good luck hug from Turner. He ended up having a ball, though. When I asked who he played with he shouted "ABBY!" And randomly he leaned up in the car on our way home from school and said "God. Made. Me." I asked him what he said and he repeated it. He was listening at school! Don't worry that I couldn't get Turner to repeat a bible verse or song or anything the entire last year and John Burke said it on his first day!! So different!
This was my easiest child to drop off. She is with Kina, Na'Shira and Cynthia in the Bunnies, and it is my third time to be in the Bunny room! I think we can handle it, and I take for granted that I am right down the hall and can check on her all the time!
Her first ride on the Bye Bye Buggy - she loved it
My little monkeys on the first day!
John Burke - seen here with his red "pockle pockle" - his word for popsicle. He asked to eat it in the tub because he is so messy, and it actually was quite easy to clean up!
Evidently Frederick (as I have randomly been calling him lately) didn't think that the first day was exciting enough. That afternoon he refused to nap, which is very rare for him. Turner and Collins were asleep and I was letting him wander around, in and out of my room. The first time I found him he was drawing with markers on the bottom of some chairs in the kitchen. Then it got quiet. He yelled, "Mommy!" I said "Yeah?" Then I said "What are you doing?" He responded, "Nothing." I went back to my Words game on my phone. Then something went off in my head. Silence is never good, especially with a 2 year old!! I walked out of my room and saw this:
That is the view of my staircase and balcony over the front door as you walk out of my room. Please notice the green bear on the balcony.
Here is the view from the den. Look under the top window on the balcony again at the green bear. I have placed it there because THAT IS WHERE JOHN BURKE WAS WHEN I WALKED OUT OF MY ROOM!!!!
He scared me to death. I gasped, but didn't want him to panic and let go. He had climbed across the ledge at the top of the stairs, almost all the way to the playroom. He was so proud, and he had done it pretty quickly!! I don't get too shaken up very often, but this really rattled me. I didn't know what to do first - and for a fleeting second thought about grabbing my phone camera but then thought better of it. I sprinted up the stairs and told him to hang on very tightly. I didn't want him to realize I was freaking out, but i just kept thinking that his little body was at least 12 feet up, with hardwood floors underneath. I ran across to the playroom, picked him up and carried him back over. I started kissing his little head, probably too much, but I just couldn't get the image and the distance out of my mind. Then we got downstairs, I calmed down some and gave him some pretty hard spankings with our wooden spank spoon - I had to let him see immediately that that was something we could NEVER do again!!! That child...thank you Lord for your constant grace and protection!!
Okay - enough excitement for today. Leaving you with some pictures at the Splash Pad last week as we live up these last few summer-like days, and then each child at 7 months. I have these because 3 times out of 3 I forgot to book a 6 month appointment and they all got checked at 7 months. I think they are related!
Turner at 7 months, sitting up for the first time
John Burke - can't find his doctor pic - I am so together
And Collins, who just started sitting up. You think she has Heath's rect-oval head?? :)