Thursday, August 28, 2014

Mums the word.

First sign of fall at my house....my favorite mums are starting to bloom.  Vacation is over, the luau is over, the kids are back in school.....let's just get on with fall already, shall we??

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

First Day of First Grade!

It's hard to believe that a whole year has passed since I put my first baby on that big bus and tearfully waved goodbye.  I can't say this year was without tears (his or mine) but there were less than last year, so we are making progress.

image source: http://classes.slis.lsu.edu
 But he's ready....he may not think he is, but he's grown and learned so much over the past year that I know he's going to tackle this year head on.  


love this shot, he's like yeah....I got this!

showing off his new ninja turtle backpack


He was so excited to get a Skylanders lunchbox, even though we don't own the game...wishful thinking for Christmas, I guess!

This picture is just so....them.  Love it.

Liam was saying, "Jake, do you need a hug??"


Nana was visiting so she got to come to the bus stop!






Go move some mountains, kid.

Monday, August 25, 2014

Outer Banks Recap #2: Go Karts and FroYo!

We really try our best to be frugal once we're at the beach: we cook all of our meals, pack lunches everyday, and generally try to stay away from any money traps.  But what's a trip to the beach without some traditional vacation fun??  This year we decided to give Go Karts a try for the first time....and (no surprise) the kids LOVED it!!

But first, let me take a selfie while waiting in line for our turn on the karts.





And we're off!!




Liam is strutting his stuff after stepping out of the car.  I, on the other hand, look like I really did just exit a Nascar race, I'm not sure why I look so disheveled! 





Next up, refueling with some delicious FroYo!!


Yummy in our tummies!!




Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Happy birthday, Brian!

Brian spent his actual birthday competing in the Tough Mudder competition (because apparently, some people enjoy tormenting themselves on holidays), and when he finished that, we spent the rest of the evening at a friend's house at their end-of-summer party.  So his celebration got pushed back to Sunday, which worked out well because Nana and PopPop were arriving that day...you know what that means....kid-free night out!! :) 

Brian likes surprises, but with the careful planning around kids and work schedules, it's hard to really pull off surprises very much.  This one wasn't a huge surprise, but he was excited that he had something to look forward to.  So first, I made him pose in the driveway for the obligatory "this guy doesn't have any idea what's going on" pictures:



The first part of the date wasn't really a surprise...or much of a date, I suppose....but we stopped at Home Depot to purchase some items for our master bath makeover (SQUEEE!!  Posts to come about that soon!) 

Nothing says live it up on your birthday weekend like buying a new medicine cabinet and a quart of paint!  That's how you roll when you turn 33.

Look at him-he can hardly contain his excitement!!
Now it was time for the real date...we were off to Narcisi Winery! We had no idea such a great little gem was so close to our house, we definitely want to head back some time.  The food was delicious and the wine was fun to sample, too (and I'm not a huge wine fan, but I LOVED the Catawba...white, sweet, and fruity-perfection!)



Happy birthday, Brian!!  We love you!

Monday, August 18, 2014

Outer Banks 2014 Recap #1: Fun in the sand and water!

We've been back just a bit over a week and of course, we are still doing laundry, finding sand in random places, and crying that we want to go back to the beach (well, the last one is basically being done by the two shortest people in the house, you can guess who I'm sure)  But I guess that's the sign of a great vacation!!  I think I'll let the pictures do most of the talking about how much fun these kiddos had. 

There was lots and lots and lots of boogie boarding:


Jake and Ben

We did a lot of sandcastle building/sand digging/seashell finding:

Alexa, Jake, Ben
Liam and Nathan
Liam and Parker

There was some kite flying:



The boys enjoyed some baseball on the beach:


And we were VERY thankful that our house had a pool (and hot tub!) this year, the kids were obsessed.  It was nice to relax by the water, watch the kids, and enjoy some cocktails!

Brian and Melissa
Cheers to a great vacation!
love this gal.

Stay tuned for more beach posts soon....
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