Thursday, October 27, 2011

First Day of School 2011

September 6th was the older boys' first day of school. They were excited to be starting a new year. Connor is in 5th grade this year and Colin is in 8th grade. They are definitely young men now. 

They were gracious enough to pose for pictures and even to allow their pajama-clad littles to join them. And boy, were the littles tired- the middle school bus comes early!

Monday, October 24, 2011

First Slumber Party

The week before school started Sybella finally had the opportunity to have her very first slumber party. It was particularly important for Sybella to have her friend Kylee over for one last extended play date before Kylee started kindergarten. The girls have been best friends for as long as they can remember (literally)! They have been in church, play groups, Bible Studies, Small Groups, and even 2 years of preschool together, not to mention numerous shopping trips, play dates, and lunches. But, with birthdays 3 months apart, Kylee meets the cutoff for starting school this year and Sybella didn't. Fortunately, the pain  sadness, drama, and absolute realization of this sunk in for Sybella in the spring so, now it's just about harnessing the last moments of summer. 

The girls dressed in their PJs from the American Girl Store trip in June and proceeded to giggle, play, giggle, play, giggle, play and not sleep very much. They had a blast! 

Who could've known then that Sybella would have Kylee's Ollie the Otter over for the night and just a a month later our family would get a rescue dog named Ollie. 

What beautiful friends! They don't get to see each other as often now with school in full swing, but they are still managing to find some quality time to hang out.  :)

11th Birthday!

On Aug 21st, Connor turned 11 years old. I can't believe how fast time flies! He is an amazing young man. 
In early August, we had a party for Connor at our pool including: swimming, table tennis, tetherball, pizza, cupcakes, and more.

Not only did Connor have many friends attend but his cousins were able to attend as well. 
Cooper and Andrew (cousin)

The AMAZING Birthday Boy

Sybella and Hannah (cousin)

Although he is now one year older, Connor is a joyful soul and I hope he always stays a kid at heart!

Happy Birthday Son!

Family Vacation

This year for our family summer vacation we again went back to Myrtle Beach, SC. The kids love this vacation spot and asked to return this year. 

This year Sybella and Cooper were both able to really enjoy the waves and sand...

We always boogie board while we are at the beach but this year, the boys also used the skin (skimmer) boards to glide across the top of the water in the shallow areas. And yes, our most adventurous child, Cooper, spent lots of time trying to figure it out. He discovered it's harder than skateboarding.  :)

We had 7 days just swimming, running in the sand, building castles, and enjoying the sun. It was amazing! David took a special day with each of the kids to do something one-on-one that they wanted to do. He took Colin golfing. Connor chose a 3D movie, Sybella took him shopping. And Cooper took him outside for a walk and to throw the ball (every day---apparently, the youngest gets more dates!)

Sunday, October 23, 2011

The Big Doll House

I have a friend who calls The American Girl Store the Big Doll House...and that it is! I had a chance to visit the store when David and I were in New York last year. In June, a brand new store opened in Tyson's Corner. I knew that the first time I took Sybella I wanted her to bring her Bitty Baby (Sophie) and have lunch at the cafe. 
So, the week it opened, we had a girls' day. Sybella and I, along with my mom went for lunch and our friends Shauna and Kylee joined us. We made reservations for opening week over 2 months in advance--- who could've known this was the toughest reservation in DC to get? 
The girls LOVED it and now Sybella is asking for both her first of the American Girl Dolls and wants to have her birthday party there....we'll have to see about that. 

Getting ready to eat. 

The girls loved the high chairs for their babies.

Taking home their wares

Father-Daughter Dance

On June 18th, David got a special Father's Day gift. He and Sybella attended a Father-Daughter Dance. It was a special date night. There was dancing, games, activities, and lots of fun had by them both!

Daddy even picked out and bought Sybella a special new dress for the event.

How adorable!

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Virginia's Gold Cup

In early May, David and I had the opportunity to attend Virginia's Gold Cup in The Plains, Virginia. For those who don't know, this is a horse race on a grass track. It is great fun. There is food, hats, horses, more hats, seersucker suits, the races, and lots of socializing. Thanks to our friends Jamil and Lambeth for inviting us!

Cooper's Second Birthday

For Cooper's Second Birthday, April 25th, we decided to have a family party. Here are some great shots of the Birthday Boy. He enjoyed everything about the day-- singing, clapping, cupcakes, candles, presents, and of course, ALL of the attention on him!


Over Spring Break (April 2011), David and the older boys went on their first camping Trip. They spent three days in the Shenandoah National Park. We aren't campers (anymore...we did enough of that when we were in the Army). But, David wanted to create a special Father-Son Memory and he felt like the best way to do that was to take all of them a bit out of their comfort zones, away from their electronics (His and the Kids') and just have some fun! They enjoyed hiking, climbing, and Smores-making.