Monday, September 26, 2011

And baby makes 5

Five. That will be the number of members in our family come the end of May. That's right. I'm expecting. It doesn't feel real to me yet, but I'm sure if I start feeling sick and as I get more and more gigantic it will become REAL! I am only 5 weeks along and far from out of the miscarriage danger zone (I won't be in my second trimester until mid November), but am trusting in God and having faith that whatever happens He will take care of me. I am determined that I am such a driven person that I will be able to be a great mother to three, just as I am to two. I know the first year will be very hard...but I also know it gets better! We are taking a leap of faith!

Arkansas Trip


































































































































































































We had a wonderful weekend visiting all of Brandon's family in Hot Springs, Arkansas and attending his Grandpa's funeral. It was a very bittersweet time. We turned Cora's carseat around for the trip, so that I could sit in the front and not be squished entertaining the kids. It was wonderful! Sixteen total hours of driving and NO crying or whining from either kid. They read books, played with toys, ate snacks, and watched a few videos. What an incredibly beautiful drive through the Ouachita Mountains! We enjoyed every second of it! The kids loved seeing the family and playing with their cousin. Brandon's Grandma and Aunt Carol live on Hamilton Lake, so we enjoyed spending time outside. On our walk, we saw a tarantula and Eli came home sporting a few nasty fire ant bites (if you've never seen one they get pustules on them...disgusting). Eli's favorite part of the trip was playing in Mimi's house in the "secret door". He is still talking about it! He loved a laundry shoot door that he could go through from a bathroom into the laundry room. When Brandon was a kid he would spend time with his brother doing the exact thing! I wasn't sure how Eli would handle Paw Paw being gone. Before we left, we were sure to explain to him why we were going to Arkansas and that Paw Paw was in heaven now. Eli would say, "Paw Paw's in Heaven because he was old and sick. He's not sick anymore in Heaven!" While we were there he said, "When Paw Paw comes back to Arkansas are we going to come back and visit?" So I had to explain that he wasn't coming back, but that we were going to see him someday in Heaven. We can't wait to see all of our family again someday!

Monday, September 19, 2011

Miss you Paw Paw































Brandon's wonderful Grandpa passed away this weekend. It was a shock, to say the least. His health had been declining in the past month, but we never thought we would be forced to say goodbye so quickly. I feel fortunate that we were able to spend time with him in both May and June and Brandon was able to spend even more time with him in July. We already miss him terribly. This has been a very rough Summer for our families. We have lost three grandparents and it is almost too much to comprehend. Even though we know we will see them all again someday in Heaven, it still is so hard to be without them here on earth. I loved Paw Paw as if he was my own Grandfather. I feel fortunate to have known and loved him for ten years!

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

First Flight




























































Marrying Brandon I knew there would be a struggle between us dealing with him taking our kids up flying. Of course, me being the careful NON-risk taker I am totally against it. Brandon, on the other hand, started flying gliders with his Grandpa when he was 10 (without his mother's knowledge might I add). These experiences sparked a love for flying that ended up with him getting his pilot's license straight out of high school and going to Purdue to pursue aeronatical engineering and mechanics. His goal was to build airplanes, work on airplanes, and support airplanes. Within Cessna, he has been able to do all three, and he loves his job. Every time we have flown airliners Eli has had a blast. He loves every second of it. Brandon finally reapproached the subject with me on taking Eli up in a Cessna a few weeks ago. Even though I am still wary, I had a lapse of sanity and told him he could take him up once, hoping it would get it out of his system. They went last night for Brandon's birthday. Eli had the time of his life, and I think sharing this experience with Eli was probably one of the best moments of Brandon's life. Brandon and his friend/coworker Tom took Eli up in a Cessna 120 and taught him about flying. They even taught Eli how to steer and Eli was able to take over and fly the plane and did great! He loved turning the plane. He told me all about it when he got home and informed me this morning that, "I am a pilot now...not Eli anymore!"


video

Monday, September 12, 2011

State Fair













We celebrated my niece Precious' birthday on Saturday, then headed off to play a show. We had a great show this weekend at the Kansas State Fair. Eli was excited ALL day long because he remembered what a great time he had last year with my mom. During our show, my Dad and "Uncle" Kurt took the kids through the animal barns. Eli was so happy to get to see the sheep and other animals. Both kids loved petting everything. It is so nice to have family near to help us when we need it! They are the best! Afterwards, we let Eli do the big giant slide a few times before heading home. He was so upset to have to leave the fair. He literally cried for a long time because he had to go. He actually loves the fair that much! We will definitely have to take him to our county fair next year. Our band's next show is October 1st. I am really looking forward to playing at our church and creating a fun coffee shop type of night for everyone!

Friday, September 9, 2011

Swimming fun!





















Eli did great in swimming lessons this summer, and we wanted him to continue getting better at swimming, so we renewed our Cessna gym membership. For the past few months we have taken the kids swimming once a week. They love it! Cessna's pool has fountains, a mushroom fountain, a water side, a basketball hoop, and is zero entry; meaning our kids can play in the shallows as much as they want. Brandon is usually able to slip in a few laps for exercise while we're there, as well. Both kids are really improving. Cora will jump from the side of the pool to Brandon, put her face under water, and kick her legs in the deep end. Eli swims on his own with his little arm floaties and will put his face under to retrieve water toys we bring. I am contemplating doing Eli's birthday party there next Winter!

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

First day of school!









































































Eli has his first day of preschool today! I have been so nervous waiting to see how he would do and whether he would like it. We had speech this morning then rushed back across town for school! I've talked a lot to him about it over the past few months explaining what he would do, that he needed to listen to his teacher, etc. He definitely looked a little unsure as we went in, but his teacher Miss Ladonna immediately guided him to his cubby and bookbag hook and got him involved in a coloring activity at the table. I snapped a few pictures, gave him a kiss, and headed for the door! There were a couple of kids crying, but Eli didn't shed a tear! I came to get him a little early and saw the kids out playing on the playground. Eli looked like he was having fun and when the teacher told them it was time to go inside, he was one of the first to go get in line (whereas I saw a couple of boys run and try to hide and escape the teacher because they didn't want to stop playing). I was really proud of him! When I picked him up he came out the door saying, "Mom, I did REALLY GOOD! I listened to my teacher!" Miss Ladonna told me he did great! I am one proud Mommy! He told me his teacher was nice and when I asked him if he wanted to go again he answered in the positive! He had fun! I am planning on attending a bible study at my church while he's at preschool, so I am looking forward to that and spending some alone time with my beautiful daughter!

Monday, September 5, 2011

RAIN!

























































This summer has been SO dry and hot. We haven't had a good rain in months and all the trees, bushes, flowers, and grasses around town are dead and brown unless they have been watered daily. Some of my flowers have withstood the heat wonderfully, others haven't, even with daily watering. It has been disheartening to be walking and see piles of dead leaves on the ground so early in summer. We have had the hottest summer that has ever been recorded (because my kids get up so early we were still able to be outside every day)! Needless to say, when it started to rain the other day, everyone in Wichita took to the streets to play in the puddles and enjoy the beautiful cold front it brought with it! Eli kept saying, "Thank you Jesus for the rain!"
We were able to move Carrot to his outside hutch that Brandon and Eli rebuilt and have plans to be outside ALL week long!


video

Friday, September 2, 2011

Meet the Teacher Night











































Last night was Eli's "Meet the Teacher Night" at Asbury Preschool. I was so excited for him to actually get to go in the school (we drive by a lot) and see his classroom. I was so glad to see that he was placed in the brand new room they built that is very large and spacious. There are a lot of different areas for play and learning. We met his teacher Miss Ladonna, who seems very nice and is the same teacher I observed last year when checking out the school. He was a little shy towards her at first, but by the end went up to her to tell her goodbye and that he'd see her Tuesday! He had fun playing cars with the other boys. They had popsicles available for everyone and both kids really enjoyed them! Eli was very happy to get to try out the playground to make sure it was fun! He had a great time! We have some "getting to know you" type sheets he gets to fill out this weekend about himself. A new season is beginning!