Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Happy 6th Birthday, Lily Kate

Lily Kate turned six yesterday, she is officially a big kid now, in my mind.  I got to go up to her school and eat lunch with her.  We brought Krispy Kreme for her class.  The kids were thrilled and Lily Kate loved passing them out.  My wonderful friend, Stephanie, Kate's Yaya, picked her up from the bus and took her on a birthday date.  We opened presents when she got home then went out for family dinner.  
 This is her new (Target version of an) American Girl doll.  She has had her heart set on this doll for some time now.  The doll has freckles and Lily Kate has wanted freckles for a while now because I have them.  Isn't that great?!  She wants to be just like her mommy, how long will that last?

 We were focused on the presents and the picture taking and Hadley was at the other end of the table unwrapping gifts.  We caught this one before it was opened, but she already had one unwrapped. 

Out to dinner

 That's right girl, Happy Birthday!
We love you Lily Kate.  You are vibrant, full of energy and enthusiasm, and smart as a whip, you are thoughtful and detailed.  We love the way you were made!

Our Friends, Walker & Banner

We LOVE having our friends, the Nelsons, here in Wilmington.  We have gotten to watch Banner and her new baby brother, Walker, a few times now.  My girls love it.  Lily Kate "puts Banner to bed", she "reads" her a book, and they fall asleep together in our bed.  It's great.  Hadley is a fan of Walker too, she kept trying to pick him up.  She would bend down and hold his hips and try to lift him.  He obviously didn't budge.  She settled for hugging him and lying with him.  

Silly face shot, at least my girls thought so....

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Dunes Waterpark Weekend

We're making a Dunes weekend an annual thing.  This year we went the weekend before Lily Kate's birthday.  We celebrated her after dinner Friday night.  In honor of her favorite food (sour cream - seriously) we made a sour cream pound cake.  

We spent most of our time hanging out at the water slides, floating the lazy river,  and sitting in the hot tubs.  
Hadley snacking on a cucumber
Caroline in her favorite secluded corner of the lazy river
Charlie floating

We had balloon hats and creatures made and got our faces painted.
Charlotte's crown
Maddie and Lily Kate's heart wands
Charlotte's cupcake face.  
...and more playing in the water...we were pretty pruney when we left on Sunday
Hudson and Samuel in the showers

Parks and Hadley in the hot tub (this is my only picture I have of an adult).  When the kids were asleep I traded my camera for one of Parks' rum concoctions and relaxed with the ladies.

Lily Kate swimming with Hadley

Thursday, January 10, 2013

Happy Birthday Charlotte

We have made it a family tradition to go out to dinner on each of the kid's birthdays.  Not cooking here seems to simplify the evening and let us focus on each other more.  Plus, at their age, it still feels like a big deal.  We opened presents before we left. 

Kate went shopping with me and chose this cupcake necklace for Charlotte.  Look at her eyes, can you tell she thought it was "amazing'?

In a quick moment of brilliance I decided to bring one of the new presents to dinner and the girls played with Charlotte's reusable sticker book for a good 30 minutes while we waited and talked.  Steph, Charlotte wore her new dress that night and already again today!  She loves it.

Hadley giving an enthusiastic YAY after the dessert arrived. 


Me and my Kate

And one more pic of Charlotte modeling one of her favorite gifts, thanks Grace!
Happy birthday to a very special 4 year old.  We love you Charlotte, you bring our family so much life!

Celebrating Charlotte

Last Saturday we had a birthday party for Charlotte with a few of her friends at Power of Play.  The joint party with she and Lily Kate has finally gotten too hard with the girls' friends being pretty different this year (now that Kate is in school) and the age between the girls feeling a little more pronounced.  It was really nice to celebrate Charlotte on her own, something that doesn't always happen for our "middlest".  Side note* I tried really hard to take pictures of Charlotte while were there but that kid never stops moving.  Almost all of them were blurry.  I promise she was there.

Caroline peering out of the princess castle

 Banner, all dressed up.

(Blurry) LilyKate in her princess gown.

The birthday girl with her Hadley.

There is a mini roller coaster ride (emphasis on mini) that Hadley loved.  Just enough thrill for a 1 yr old. 

June, a ballerina on the go

 Finally, a picture of Charlotte sitting.  She was so happy and didn't quite know what to do with herself when we sang to her.

 Ford and Samuel cheesing it up

Kate & Maddie, the big girls

Chattanooga Christmas

We celebrated Christmas here this year and the day after we headed to Chattanooga to be with the Carpenters.  
Here is Patrick with Hadley and Conner.  Neither of them were too keen on their parents holding a different baby. So, Patrick juggled them both.  They are only 3 months apart. 
Baby bath time. 

We went to the Discovery Museum and all the kids lingered in the water exhibit for a long time.  The littles were just too cute in their long smocks.

I'm telling you, this kid's faces are priceless.

Conner can make some faces too.  Somehow 80% of the pics I have of him are like this,  enthusiastic!

Granmar & Parks

We also rode a local train.  It was really fun and different.  Here are Henry and Lily Kate.

Lane & Hadley

My favorite moment of our visit was this one.  A week or so before Christmas break Lily Kate came home from the school bus telling me that some of her friends told her that if you put a spoon under your pillow and wear your pajamas inside out that it will snow the next day.  She was really excited, convinced even that we could all have a snow day if we just let her do the experiment.  I changed the subject often and said we'd try later, hoping to avoid a disappointing next morning.  If you know LK, you know she didn't forget, you know she just asked me every single day until - while we were in Chattanooga - I said sure.  So, the next morning the kids all slept in and I walked down the quiet hallway by myself...  You know what's coming.  I looked out the window and it was snowing.  I felt like the adult in a movie who sees Santa and has a little secret moment of believing.  I ran to Kate's room and jumped on her in bed.  She was thrilled!  She woke up Charlotte, got all dressed in some of Lane's snow gear, and went to collect some.  Such a treat for that precious girl.  No one ever tell her that she wasn't solely responsible for that snow!