December 6, 2014

never say never

 This is Luke's first year of preschool. Although he turned three late summer, we decided it would be most developmentally appropriate for Luke to attend the two & a half-year-old class at his preschool. And that was the perfect decision. Luke's speech, social skills and maturity are a great match for the other two/three-year-olds in his room. We've seen a tremendous improvement in Luke's speech since the summer and I attribute most of that to his time in the preschool classroom. Nothing can replicate the environment of a classroom of peers!

Luke has also learned so many great things in preschool. He can now say the blessing by himself (God is great, God is good, Let us thank Him for our food. AMEN!), colors for longer periods of time, can sit still and listen much better than before and his language has just boomed! It's so sweet to finally have a two-way conversation and feel like he "gets it." So all in all I'm very pleased with the growth Luke has shown since starting school in September.


however...

Preschool hasn't been all dandelions and butterflies. Luke has learned various negative behaviors (namely snatching, yelling, and physical aggression) from his time with 10 other two & three-year-olds. I thought maybe Luke was just going through a phase? But then we went to a birthday party for one of his classmates and I saw the negative behaviors in action. I saw the "spirited" kids snatching toys and yelling at my son, while he just stood there, without the language to respond appropriately. Sure, kids will be kids and they will snatch, yell and sometimes even hit when they don't get their way, but I expect firm and swift consequences for those actions so they can be stopped. and stopped quickly.

The educator in me has also struggled a great deal with the content of the classroom curriculum. Since day one I've tried to put my teacher arsenal on the back burner and remind myself that the content isn't important at this age. But you know what? IT IS. It's really important. Sure, I wasn't expecting Luke to learn his letter sounds and start reading sight words this year, but I did have high hopes that he would accomplish more than just unstructured free play everyday. 

Then there's Luke's separation anxiety. The past 4-6 weeks he has cried and run after me nearly everyday at drop off. I understand that all children go through these phases, but there's nothing more heart crushing than seeing two teachers try to restrain your child from chasing you down the hall. On top of that, Luke has been telling me he doesn't want to go to school and doesn't like it. 

So I'm doing something I never thought I'd do - 
I'm pulling my precious son out of preschool & 
I am going to (attempt to) homeschool.

Me. The public school teacher. The one who has harped on and on about the benefits of the classroom setting, daily peer interactions and the value of learning from others. Me, the one who thought homeschoolers were too protective, too conservative and too much afraid of the world around them. Me. I am now a homeschool Mom. And I'm excited. :)

December 4, 2014

I am SUCH a mom

This week I got a minivan. 
A MINIVAN Y'ALL! 
And I am sooo excited!

It's no secret that I loved my Tahoe, but with just under 200,000 miles, the Tahoe was an old girl. We have had more than our fair share of repairs on her and each time we stroked another check to our mechanic I would bring up the idea of new wheels.

I used to say that I would NEVER be a minivan Mom. Never, never, EVER. But that was long before I became a mom and discovered how much crap kids have. The toys, the books, the diaper bags, the strollers, the carriers, the car seat covers-- the car fills up fast, long before people are in her seats! 

Having a toddler has also taught me the value of sliding doors. On more than one occasion Luke has hit the car adjacent to ours in a parking lot by swinging open his door too far. (and yes, I've waited to talk to the other car owners and offered to fix said scratches!) Sliding doors are just, well, amazing.


So this week my sweet husband put his minivan hatred aside for both my desires & our family's needs. We bought a 2006 Honda Odyssey that has just under 100,000 miles. It's like new, inside and out, and I still can't believe that it's mine. Seriously, this is the nicest car I've ever driven! And it's mine!!! I'm so smitten I'm even pinning minivan ideas on Pinterest y'all!
I am officially a minivan mom and I am pumped!


November 25, 2014

Georgia Kate's first birthday party!

We celebrated Georgia Kate's first birthday this past Saturday. Surrounded by family and friends, it was exactly what I had hoped it would be. The house was decorated in pink, the food was plentiful and I think that everyone really enjoyed the party.

I decided to run with the theme of a "love muffin," aka my nickname for Georgia Kate. The party was a brunch celebration, with all sorts of little finger foods. We served assorted donut holes, pumpkin mini muffins, banana bread mini muffins, a breakfast casserole, mini quiches, sausage balls, fruit salad and pink pop-tarts, for the kids. :) I had a Keurig with various coffees and teas along with an assortment of juice in the kitchen. I'll share the pics of the party "stuff" today, and come back tomorrow with pictures of the guests and the birthday girl.

 (After looking at the terrible quality of my party photos I told John, 
"I really need to learn how to use our camera!")
 Georgia Kate's homemade smash cake.
Baker, I can do. Cake decorator, I am not!

Come back tomorrow for some more (fuzzy and blurry and sometimes dark)
photos of Georgia Kate's first birthday brunch! :)

November 24, 2014

Happy Birthday Georgia Kate!


Today our darling girl turns ONE! I can't believe we've been lucky enough to have her for a whole year already. It has, without a doubt, been the fastest year of my life. And the most memorable. And the most sleep-deprived. And the sweetest, by far.

 Georgia Kate is silly, sweet and spunky. When Luke snatches a toy, she can scream just as loud (or louder!) than his worst fit. When we make a silly face, she scrunches her nose and closes her eyes with her own silly reply. And in the dark of our bedroom, every night after nursing but before I lay her in the crib, Georgia Kate leans in to rest her head on my shoulder and melts into my chest. She is everything I imagined my daughter would be and more.
 

 Showing off her greatest skill, hand clapping!
Sister LOVES to clap hands and gives us a round of applause after we say grace every night at dinner. :)
Oh sweet Georgia Kate, I have so many big dreams for your life. I hope that you get to be a mama one day. I hope you can have a sweet baby girl and experience this precious, unbreakable bond that you and I share. But above all of my dreams, I pray that you'll never know a day without Jesus. I pray that He will protect you with health and safety, that He will guide your Daddy and I to parent you with grace and mercy, and that He will lead you to know the precious name of Jesus. You are such a gift and you've filled a hole in my heart that nobody else could fill. I love you Georgia Kate, my darling love muffin!

November 20, 2014

Christmas wishing

We all know I'm slightly narcissistic when it comes to wish lists. I have no problem making personal wish lists and sharing them with the world via my blog. (Now please don't think I'm walking around dropping hints to my family members every time we're together. That is NOT my style.)

But the blog IS a fun way to pretend that we will find a handful of cash in our winter coats and John will decide to spend it all on my Christmas wish list. :) And this year? There's no vaccums. Nothing that benefits the house or the cleaning closet or the rest of the family. Nope, this years wish list is straight up for M -  E - ME.



ONE: New kicks  This stay-at-home mama works best in sneakers. Flats are cute and all, but they don't cut it when you're chasing a wild toddler and simultaneously feeding a screaming baby in the Target parking lot. in the rain. with a cart with a crazy wheel. These New Balance 574 sneakers are cute without looking like a running shoe.

TWO: Lisa Leonard Stacking Rings  I just love Lisa Leonard's jewelry. Pretty much anything on her website in pewter or sterling silver is a winner in my book. These stacking rings with my babies names would be a sweet addition to my jewelry box.

THREE: The Barrington St. Anne Tote  Roomy, a classic design and four season friendly. The ultimate mom bag in my opinion. You can personalize these in any colors and designs that you want (the black and brown herribone? LOVE IT!) AND they have a monogram option. WINNER.

FOUR: Target's ovesized Zara-copycat scarf  Because everyone else is wearing this print this season, so why shouldn't I? No but really, I love that this scarf is oversized (aka WARM) and the colors make it really versatile. Yes please!

FIVE: A monogrammed pullover  In pink, to match those new kicks above. :) Along with jeans and comfy sneaks, this is my ideal mom outfit.

Now it's time to dream along with me!
What's on your ultimate wish list?