Last Day at Marvelously Made

This past Wednesday marked our last day at Marvelously Made! Quite a few tears were shed by this Mama as we said our goodbyes. We are so excited about our upcoming move & this next chapter for our family, but I am truly brokenhearted to be leaving such a precious school. I know we'll find our groove in Vegas and that we'll be able to find great schools for the girls, but there will never be another Marvelously Made. It'll be great of course, but it just won't be the same...and I'm still mourning the loss of that. ;)  Blah, blah, blah...enough whining from me! On to the pictures!

After we got Shelby dropped off at school & distributed artwork to totes for the last time, my mom & I took Hadley to Chick-fil-a. Shelby doesn't like Chick-fil-a's breakfast menu, but Hadley loves it. So Mommy/Hadley breakfast dates at CFA have been a special thing for us to do together while Shelby is at school. We've done this once every month or so throughout the school year, and it seemed like the perfect way to spend Hadley's last morning on her own with me...next year when Shelby is at school, we'll have Baby Brother in tow! Crazy to think about!!

When we came to pick Shelby up from school, the tears started to flow for me! Shelby couldn't get enough hugs from all of her teachers!

Ms. Chelsea

Ms. Elizabeth

Ms. Kim & Ms. Elizabeth
Ms. Jennifer

Once we got back to our car after school, we surprised Shelby with the new Elephant & Piggie book by Mo Willems. It was a big hit!

It's so hard to believe that the preschool years are over Miss Shelby...next stop, Kindergarten!


End of the Year Celebration at MM

As I mentioned in my last post, I am waaaaay behind in blogging b/c SO much has been going on lately!! I'm going to try to update the blog in chronological order if I can, so we'll start off with Shelby's End of the Year Celebration at Marvelously Made which was last Monday.

Marvelously Made is a multi-age preschool program for 3-5 year old kiddos. At the End of the Year Celebration, the older kiddos get to introduce themselves one at a time on the microphone & then listen to his or her small group teacher read his/her poem aloud. The poems were written by the teachers about the students. It's so fun to see the kiddos' faces light up as the teachers read their poems!

Shelby introducing herself on the microphone

Shelby listening to Ms. Jennifer read her poem

Here is a video of Shelby's introduction & her poem:

Here's a video of one of the songs the kiddos sang during the program. Shelby was standing in the back of the group b/c she's one of the tallest kids, so it's kind of hard to see her. She was so animated during every single song--we were so proud of her! She enjoyed every second of the celebration!

The program was a little long, but this girl was a perfect angel throughout the entire thing!!!
We were so glad Grammy got to be here for Shelby's celebration!

Enjoying cookies after the celebration :)
Sweet friends!
Left to right: Hadley (3), Shelby (5.5), Carrie (3), & Josie (4.5)


Life Lately

Life lately has been FLYING BY! We just said our goodbyes to my mom this morning (boohoo!), and usually once visitors leave things tend to calm down & we get back to our normal routine. But since this is our last week in this house before the movers arrive, I don't think anything is going to feel "normal" for quite some time! ;) 

Soooo much has been happening around here lately--Shelby's last day of school, our first visit from the toothfairy!!!!, Derek was promoted to Major, my friend Lindsey visiting from Georgia, a baby shower..I could seriously go on & on! But first, I just wanted to say THANK YOU again to my mom & dad. Thank you to my Dad for sharing Grammy with us, and thank you to my Mom for putting her life on hold to be with us! She kept the girls while we were house-hunting & then extended her stay so she could spend more time with us & be here for Shelby's end of the year celebrations. It was such a treat having her here, and we're already counting down to when she comes to visit us at the new house in Vegas!! We are blessed beyond measure to have her in our lives!

Lunch at The Tower of the Americas with Grammy!


15 Days & Counting...

I have no idea how it's almost here, but we are a mere fifteen days out from when we hit the road for Vegas! Craziness!!!! Last week was our house-hunting trip, and I'm so incredibly glad to have that trip behind us and have a house secured. Just like our house-hunting trip to San Antonio, this one was mentally, physically, & emotionally exhausting! There's just something about making a huge decision based on so many unknowns that is just utterly taxing, but I'm not really good at making insignificant day-to-day decisions...so I guess it's not really that surprising that a big decision like this would be hard on me. ;)  Our Vegas house-hunting trip was definitely harder on me being 35 weeks pregnant, but it was also hard in the sense that we were completely on our own. When we went house-hunting in SA, we already knew where the Goins & Gallimores would be living (they took their house-hunting trips before us) so it made it easier for us to zero in on certain parts of the city when we were searching. And we're so, so thankful that my mom was able to keep the girls while we were away! The realtor we used in Vegas was wonderful, but we were literally with him for 12 hours on our first day. There's no way we could have managed that with kids in tow, even Derek & I were dragging by the end!!

Anywho, to make a long story short, it was a hard couple of days but I'm proud to say I only ended up in tears twice! ;) And we're feeling really good about where we'll be for the next 4 years. Don't get me wrong, we're still nervous about starting all over in a new community with a new baby in tow, but we're also getting excited! We're definitely ready for our next adventure!

Derek & I on the Las Vegas strip on our last night of our house-hunting trip...these are the faces
of two very relieved people!!!

And just so I don't ever forget our very first impressions of our new city, I wanted to record the things that stuck out to me the most on this trip. When we first stepped off our plane & into the Vegas airport, Derek was blown away by all of the slot machines. We definitely weren't expecting that! And I stopped dead in my tracks at a breath-taking view of a mountain out the airport window...little did I know, those views would literally be at every turn on our trip! Las Vegas has the most gorgeous backdrop, and we saw some pretty amazing sunsets while we were there! And last but not least, I kept a water bottle filled with ice water with me all week. Derek simply couldn't get over the fact that not once did the water bottle sweat or have condensation on it despite the high temps. The lack of humidity there is legit, and it's just plain delightful!

We were beyond thrilled to get back to these two crazies after our trip!


Our Picks: Children's Books on Moving

Sorry things have been a bit quiet on the blog lately! We just got back from our whirlwind house-hunting trip to Las Vegas. I meant to schedule a couple posts to publish while we were away, but that never happened. ;)  Anyhow, since we just got back from house-hunting, moving is at the forefront of my mind right now. So this post seemed pretty timely! :)

It is no secret that children's books hold a special place in my heart, and I'm a firm believer that one thing you can never have too much of is books. ;)  So we have quite the collection of children's books in our house, not to mention between the girls we hit the maximum number of book check-outs each week at the library. All of that to say, we're no experts but we know a good book when we see one!

I love the idea of using children's books to help facilitate conversations about difficult concepts for little ones, so in the weeks leading up to our last move we were on the hunt for some good books on moving! Our top two favorites from our last move were The Berenstain Bears Moving Day and Henry & Mudge and Annie's Good Move. We ordered them both off of Amazon, but you should be able to find them at your local library as well.

I've already set those two books aside to read to the girls again as our move gets closer, but I was on the hunt for a few new titles as well. See, I told you--there's no such thing as too many books! ;)  I found {THIS LIST} of books & thought it was a really good one! And it surprised me b/c two books we own & love were on there, but I totally didn't even think about them being "moving" books..even though they definitely are!

We first read this book only b/c it's by the same author that writes the Scaredy Squirrel series, which Shelby really enjoys. But this book is wondering in its own right!

If you're familiar with The Kissing Hand, this is part of that series.

I was disappointed b/c a lot of the books on {THIS LIST} that I was eager to try weren't available at our local library, but here are a couple new titles we were able to try that we enjoyed!

This is a great one if your kiddos enjoy the other Alexander books, I can't believe I never knew this particular book existed until we were on the hunt for more moving books!

The girls & I both loved this sweet story!

If you have any other moving books you'd recommend, I'd love to hear them!!


Top Five Friday

5. Bath & Body Works Wallflower in Honeysuckle
In the past few months, we've recently started using Bath & Body Works' wallflowers. Other brands we tried before were always way too strong, but the wallflowers seem to emit the just right amount of fragrance & last a decent length of time! We just tried out the Honeysuckle scent, and we're loving it!!

4. New pool towels from Pottery Barn Kids

Up until we purchased these new towels from PBK, the girls just always used one of our regular sized pool towels. But they always wanted to be wrapped up in the towels, which would lead to them tripping on the towels or the towels dragging on the ground b/c they were obviously way too long for them. After the umpteenth time of being annoyed by this situation, I finally decided to do something about it & order new towels for the girls! Of course, the PBK towels are pricey...but we're still using our PBK bath towels that were gifted to us before Shelby was born by my friend Erin from Bennett (thanks, Erin!!!). Almost 6 years later, those bath towels are still going strong! So I figured if the pool towels from PBK were half as good as the quality of their bath towels, we'd more than get our money's worth out of them!!

3. OPI Drip Dry

These really work!!! I've gotten back into painting my nails on a regular basis (I always, always, always have my toenails painted no matter what...but I go through seasons where I always paint my finger nails & then seasons where I never paint them), but I get frustrated b/c I always get slight "sheet marks" on my nails no matter what I do. I thought I'd give these a try, and they totally do the trick!!!

2. Mud Day!
Today marked the annual Mud Day at Marvelously Made!!! The kids are allowed to play in the mud as long as they want to on this day or completely avoid the mud if that's not their idea of fun. And the kids will totally surprise you--the ones who you think might be all about the mud avoid it all costs, and then ones who you think might not be into getting dirty are literally rolling around in the mud! It's such a fun day!! Shelby was one of the last three kiddos in the mud today at Mud Day! She had an absolute blast!!!!

1. Weekends!
It wasn't all that long ago that we didn't regularly get weekends due to Derek's residency schedule, but I try to remind myself of that fact from time to time. I'm so immensely grateful that our weekends are always family weekends now! Such a huge blessing! Looking forward to another delightful weekend with my favorite people! Fingers crossed the rain holds off tomorrow, so we can make another trip to Aquatica!

Happy Friday, Everyone!! :)  Hope you have the BEST weekend!


Life Lately

This past weekend we made what we will most likely be our final trip to Kiddie Park! It's an old-timey amusement park geared towards ages 6 & under located downtown. It was fun b/c this was the first time Hadley would get on more than just two rides! ;)  This girl can never be accused of being a thrill-seeker, that's for sure!



This is how Hadley spends a lot of her time at Kiddie Park...just watching Big Sister from the sidelines ;)

Shelby has had my Mother's Day surprise planned for weeks! As we were leaving school on Friday afternoon before Mother's Day, she exclaimed: "I can't wait for Sunday!!" My friend overheard & asked her what was so exciting that we had planned on Sunday. ;)  To which I replied: "She's just excited about Mother's Day!" Ha! ;)  Usually on weekend mornings, I get up with Shelby while Derek & Hadley sleep in. But Shelby insisted that I sleep in on Mother's Day, so she & Derek could go on a "secret mission." This is what I woke up to when they returned:

Shelby was too excited/distracted by all of the surprises to be able to focus on smiling for the camera ;)
And they had a cute little photo backdrop set up at church for Mother's Day!

And since Shelby was so excited about Mother's Day & woke up early that morning, here's how she felt by the time naptime rolled around! ;)  I could just die with how sweet she looks sleeping with her baby doll tucked in next to her!!

And a few other random peeks into our life from the past week or so...

The first trip to the pool where we were able to convince Hadley it was okay to wear her puddle jumper...hallelujah! This made things about a million times less stressful since we didn't have to worry about one kid drowning ;)

This is the girls' happy place :)

First time playing with the water table for the year!

This was last week at the library. Notice the girls' cardigans--we'd had a random chilly & windy day in the midst of summer temps!

This was a candid shot I somehow accidentally snapped of Shelby after I'd taken a video of her doing a "trick" at the playground. I'm so glad I accidentally got this picture b/c it's a rare image of her genuine smile! Usually all the pictures I have are of her forced smile when she's asked to pose for the camera, so this shot is a true gem to me!

Reading non-fiction with Daddy :)

And last but not least, here's a peek at the girls today! We usually go to the playground with the Goins on Thursdays, but since Will was under the weather we took advantage of our free day & got the girls hair cuts followed by a lunch date at Chick-fil-a! I take Hadley to CFA about once a month or so for a breakfast date while Shelby is in school {because Shelby doesn't like their breakfast menu}, but I can't remember the last time Shelby has actually set foot inside a CFA. She'd been asking to go so she could play on the playplace, so she was thrilled we were able to grant that wish today after their hair appointment!

This girl is all business when it comes to her ice cream!

And OMG, I think I have mentioned this on the blog once before, but I have to vent about it again. What on earth is the point of children's hair salons with the little personal TV screens for each kid if the stylist can't cut the child's hair with him/her looking at the screen?!?! The stylist asks the kid at the beginning of the appointment what he/he wants to watch, but then the kid can barely watch it b/c they have to look down/left/right the whole time...how frustrating is that for a small child?! I don't say this to brag, but our kids are VERY well behaved in public (often a very different story at home, ha!) & incredibly obedient with adults other than their parents...so if these stylists have trouble getting our girls to turn their heads "just so" every 30 seconds, I can only imagine what it's like with a kid who is actually fidgety or not cooperative!! I was frustrated with this kids' salon after our last visit for this reason, but it's just so darn close to our house & it was the girls' last cuts before the move...so I didn't feel like it was worth it to find a new salon for just one visit. But all of that to say, I will never take them to a kids' salon again. I always took Shelby to my stylist in Mississippi, and she was amazing with Shelby!!!!! But my stylist in San Antonio unfortunately just didn't have that same vibe with small children. Hopefully we'll have better luck finding a stylist for the girls when we move!

Happy almost Friday, everyone!!