Friday, June 15, 2012

Palm Island Getaway

For our first official summer beach trip, we were invited to make a trip to Palm Island with our friends, the Buffkin family. It ended up being an amazing trip. I LOVE traveling with this family. It always makes for a wonderful time.

Trish and I did some pre vacation planning, and decided we would do a treasure hunt for the kids. We bought and painted a large wooden treasure box, and filled it with all kinds of jewels and goodies for the kids. The dads job was to bury the treasure. So early in the morning while everyone was still sleeping, Larry snuck down to the beach and did the deed. Trish designed a treasure map, burnt edges and all. We rolled it up into an old wine bottle, and tossed it out into the ocean near where the kids were swimming. It didn't take long for them to notice it. Steven recovered it, and they all rushed to the shore to take the message out of the bottle. How exciting to unroll a treasure map! The older boys were suspect right away, but they went along with the fun for the benefit of the younger ones. They all worked together to read the map and figure out where the treasure could be hidden. It lead them to a spot that had a beautiful sea shell. I suggested they start digging, and they each took a turn until they hit something. The girls squealed with delight. The older boys turned it into a "who dunit" mystery, and made it their mission to figure out the who, how, and when we adults were able to pull it all off. F-U-N memories.

What's that in the distance?

Steven recovering the message in a bottle.

What's this? The message in a bottle is a map. The kids see the landmarks and......

Off to find the spot.

Dig Dig Dig

Dad power helps get to the treasure chest.



Taking the loot back to the house.

One gold coin for Grace.

Josh's favorite find was the "toilet bowl candy" You dip the "plunger" into the bowl and lick the candy off.

Here are more photos of the fun we all had.

George and the boys on the paddle boat.

George manning the grill on steak night.

Boys digging holes.

George introducing the kids to sand fleas.

The girls were treated to a close encounter with a tortoise when we took a ride around the island on the golf cart.

Surfs up!

Steven and George collecting shark teeth.

Grace and Amanda Lily flying a kite on our last evening.

Monday, June 11, 2012

Last Day of School 2012

Woo Hoo!!! Last day of school!!! Summertime!!!
Here are the pics I snapped of the kids as they were dismissed.
Steven was awarded "Most likely to become an astronaut"
Amanda Lily was given the highest award possible "Terrific Kid"
I am one proud Mama!

We are so glad to put this year in the history books, and look forward to a summer full of adventures, late nights, and sleep in days. Yea!!!!

Steven and classmates doing the party train on the last day.

Amanda Lily and friends at the last day of school bowling fun morning.

Steven and Mrs Roberts. He told me she was in a tie as his all time favorite, and of course he got teary in the car when we left because he will miss her.

Amanda Lily and Ms Bierlein. She learned soooooo much from her, and as much as she loved her 2nd grade experience, she on the other hand was super happy to get the summer started pronto! 

Church Softball League

In an effort to steer Steven in a different athletic direction, hubby decided to play softball on our churches team. He and Steven can really get at each other at times, but they are also so very close. Steven looks up to everything George does, and wants to be just like him. George and I are both huge football fans, and our kids are too. However, the parent in us doesn't want our kid out there being tackled hard and possibly hurt. We thought if he saw his Dad playing softball, it might peak an interest in Steven to play baseball instead. 

George had a great time with the guys from church. He has never played baseball or softball in his life, so it was a challenge to learn all the rules on the fly. I literally found myself coaching him from the stands. He did AWESOME! He ended up becoming the catcher for the team, and they were 3rd in the league at seasons end. At play offs, they were eliminated in the second round. 

The kids and I had fun cheering him on from the stands, but in the end, Steven still has his heart set on playing football in the fall....not baseball or soccer or basketball. Sigh. I guess I'll just have to keep praying he doesn't get hurt.

Oh, as for George, he says he'll definitely be playing on the church team again next year.

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Cooling off at the Springs

Summer is heating up here, and we were so excited to spend a day boating with friends at the Springs. The Spring itself is a constant degree.....COLD! The kids enjoy swimming around exploring with their little boat and snorkels. I much prefer doing a whole lot of nothing in the warmth of the sun from the boat or a float.

Our friends Heather and Mia accompanied us on this trip, and I got a lot of pictures of the kids. We look forward to spending many of our summer days lazing around on our boat, and chilling out at the Springs. Summer is finally here!!!!!

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Ballet Birthday Party

Along with all the other stuff our family has going on in the month of May, we also have both Steven and Amanda Lily's birthdays. Not to mention that they are only a week apart. Steven has decided to use his birthday party money to go to Space Camp this year. Amanda Lily wanted a party with friends.

While deciding on what this years theme should be, she was in the midst of preparing for this year's dance recital. She couldn't believe we hadn't done a ballet themed party in years past, so it was decided. After researching ideas, here is the party we created. It was a fun one to put together. Parties are easy to create on a budget with a little creative inspiration, a good eye when shopping, and time. Happy Birthday to my ballerina girl!

The buffet had all kinds of sweet confections. 

Balloons hung loosely above the party table.

Grapes and cheese cubes for a snack. I bought this black and white wrapping paper on clearance at Target after Christmas. Doesn't it make a nice runner?

I got the inspiration for this ruffle cake from one of Amanda Lily's skirts, pictured below.

Sparkling pink lemonade in pink sugar rimmed cups was a huge hit with the girls. 

Nana sewed this cute tutu for the dress form as a decoration.

Party goers received a pink and black ribbon dance wand, and ballet pink gumballs and marshmallows for favors.

I made use of Amanda Lily's dance recital costumes as decor.

Simple party goods, and roses gifted to Amanda Lily after her recital were small details. I kept the flowers from her recital in the garage fridge, and they held up beautifully.

Cotton candy!!!!

Flowers (another gift after her recital) cut down, alongside a photo album of her years dancing, dressed the coffee table. 

Amanda Lily's friend Hannah came and lead the girls in a few ballet steps.

They all really loved dancing with Hannah.

They had so much fun with the ribbon wands.

Hannah and her mom hung out after the party was over, and she and Amanda Lily got down to business. They had the best time choreographing and executing a dance. The two of them danced for hours. Just look at those feet.

My niece Sophie strikes a ballet pose.

Parents with the BIG eight year old.

Cake inspiration skirt.

Pretty party ladies.

Eight candles, with a smudge of frosting via her loving brother! It's a Greek tradition. (: