Friday, May 31, 2013

Summer Fun, Week One

Dear Ian,

Now that school is out, you and I have a lot of time on our hands.  Daddy too, since he is at home with us for a bit this summer as well.  So in order to keep us from losing our minds with all this togetherness and to stave off cabin fever, your Momma has come up with our Summer Fun Chain.  I sorta borrowed the paper chain idea from a friend, but since we make paper chains for EVERYTHING, it figured it would work out ok.  You even helped me cut out and decorate the chain links.  Anyhoo.  On each link of the chain is an activity that we fulfill.  There's one per day, and for every one link that has something that we have to pay for, there are four links of free fun.  I'm trying to be economical and entertaining.  It was fun to come up with each idea.

Here's our awesome paper chain.  It looks awfully short, but keep in mind that the links are for weekdays only, so we are missing a few days worth due to weekends.

Anyhoo, the events this week kicked off with going to the beach on Monday for Memorial Day.  We packed up and headed off to Carabelle beach with Issa and her mom and dad.  You are at an awesome age for the beach.  You entertained yourself quite a bit, played with Issa, and I actually got to sit and watch.  It was kind of nice.  And you had so much fun. 
 Floating in your floatie
 Braving the waves
Haha! This wave knocked you over shortly after I got this picture!

Day two of our first week of fun was actually helpful to Mommy and Daddy; you and I washed my car, and I must say, we did a pretty awesome job.  I worked hard to teach you our routine of "wash a panel, rinse a panel," and for the most part, it worked pretty well.  We only got slightly soaked, but that happened toward the end of the washing when you decided it would be fun to spray Mommy.  And of course I had to fire back.  After Imola (our car) was all clean and dry, we had to wait for ourselves to dry before we went inside.  So Momma taught you a fun oldie-but-goodie game: hopscotch!  You really got into it, too.
 Hosing off the front of the car
 Scrubbing away!
 Here you are playing hopscotch.  You had a lot more fun with this than I expected!
Our Wednesday activity, I'm sad to say, I dont have any photos from.  I had to go to work for my last day of school for meetings and such, so you spent the morning with Grandma Brooks, and she took you to fulfill the chain activity for the day.  The two of you went to the library to check out new books!  And you are super excited about your selection, which includes Grandma B.'s very favorite, The Cat in the Hat.  Please know I'm being sarcastic there.  Grandma hid her copy somewhere in her house, and then you go off and check it out at the library.  I personally think that hilarious! 
Thursday we tried something totally new for you, but it's one of my very favorite things.  We went bowling!  I found this cool website that lets us sign up for two free games of bowling every day during the summer for kids 12 and under.  It is super cool!  Every week I get our coupons, so I have at least one bowling day a week planned for us this summer.  And you had a complete blast today.  Ever since we left the bowling alley, you've been telling Daddy and me how much fun you had. 
 An action shot of you rolling your bowling ball.  After a few attempts like this, you figured out your own style of running up and hurling the ball down the lane.  It worked out pretty well for you.  And we also had the bumpers put up, so you had a pretty good pin count for the day.
You with your arm raised in victory as the pins started to fall. 
Here are your bowler stats for today's games.  Your average isn't bad for a first timer!  First game was a 56, and the second was a 75.  What makes this Momma proud is the split conversion you had.  It was a little 8-10 split, but you got it!  It was really quite impressive!  Maybe the PBA is for you!
And this brings us to Friday morning.  You and I visited Firefly Pottery where you got to select a piece of pottery and paint it.  You chose a mug, and you picked purple, blue and yellow paint for your decorating.  You were very serious about your work; and you did it all on your own.  Momma didn't help do one little thing.  You also selected a neat piece to decorate for Papa for a Father's Day gift, but we didn't take pictures of it so we wouldn't ruin the surprise. 
 A very serious little artist, hard at work

Concentrating hard and making a masterpiece.
 We will get to pick up your pieces pretty soon, and when we do, I will make sure to get a  shot of your final products.  Except for Papa's, of course, unless it's after Father's Day. 
So that was week one of our Summer Fun chain.  And I think we have gotten off to a great start.  Next week looks like it's going to be as much fun, and I cant wait! 
Love you lots!

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Final Glimpses

Dear Ian,

It has taken me about five blog posts to wrap up this school year, and yes, I know it's because I have been running around like a chicken with my head cut off.  One post probably would have done it, but there's been so much.

I can personally attest to the fact that this is the ABSOLUTE last post for this school year.  This one is all about your very last day. 

We got up, took the final paper chain piece off our little countdown to summer, and got dressed and ready to go like any other day.  But it wasn't just like any other day.  It was the LAST day of this year!  And because your Mommy is nuts, we did this little project again: 

On the first day of school, I took your picture in the yard.  You dressed yourself that day, and you matched from your tractor shirt, to your tractor shorts and even your undies even had tractors on them.  (One day your wife will read that and giggle.  Get used to Mommy embarrassing you, Bud.)

Here's the picture from your first day of school:
So cute!  It is a little better than last year's first day picture where you looked like you were off to be tortured. 

And here is this year's picture of you on the last day of school holding the picture from your first day this year. 
It's hard to see, but the difference in you is amazing!  It always blows my mind to see how much you change in just a short period of time. 

Here's first day and last day side by side.  See what I mean?!  You've grown up so much!  Stop it!!

Sigh.  I know I cant stop time, and deep down in my heart I don't really want it to stop, but I would like it to slow down just a little so we can enjoy it a bit more.  Soon you'll be a big kid, and these pictures will have more of an "Awww Mom, stop!" sort of air about them. Oh well for you.  We're going to do this for a while, Little Dude. 

And I cant wait.

With all my love,

Works of Art #41 - School Year End Edition

Yes, yes.  I know.  I am behind again.  But at least they are getting up on this blog!  I will admit, I had quite a stack.  So better get to it:

 This is a book you made from the song "Five Green and Speckled Frogs."  I love frogs, so this unit was a favorite of Mommy's.
 On each page, counting down, you stamped the appropriate number of frogs. Cute!
 Name writing practice. 
 An adorable frog on a lily pad complete with water lily. 
Here's some Ms. Lynn awesomeness.  We read "A Busy Year" by Leo Lionni, and then the classes made their own version of the books.  A different page for each season made up the final product.  The above picture is your cover.
 Ms. Lynn's explanation page and your spring page.  It's neat to see your art progress through the book.  You really started to get the concept of composition.
 Fall page
 Winter page
 and your rainy spring page.
Here's a neat picture you made in class.  It's a beach.  The bottom is beige paint with sand in it, then your mosaic ocean and the top is the sky. pretty! 
 I actually had this picture hanging in my little area of my classroom.  Sunflowers, like Van Gogh.
 Some chalk and pastel art.
 Here's the lifecycle of a frog.  So cool!  You can explain the whole process.
 A stained glass cross that you actually made back around Easter.  Oops
 Ms. Lynn's description on this says, "Seascape influenced by the impressionist artists Mary Cassatt and Vincent Van Gogh.  You colored the boats and water color painted the background
 Not sure here, but it is really pretty
 Same with this mosaic
 A GREAT caterpillar you made during an Eric Carle unit
 This is probably my favorite.  Working on getting it a frame.  Also created during an Eric Carle unit
 And finally, another sunflower made in the style of Vincent Van Gogh.
You made some fantastic art this year, Bear.  It is really neat to see your artistic skills growing as you grow. 
Love you much,

Thursday, May 23, 2013

Grand Finale 2013

Dear Ian,

Here it is: last-day-of-school-eve.  And I know I have said it a zillion and a half times, but I cannot get over how fast time is zipping by. 

But, no matter how much I lament the speed of time, we're still at this point.  Tomorrow will close another chapter in your little world, and Saturday you will wake up as a kid on summer vacation.  I still have a few days of post planning, but I can honestly say I am looking forward to not having to fight/bribe/cajole you into getting ready to go so we can get to work/school on time. 

I am going to miss this year, though.  You had a great little group of friends and two fantastic teachers, yet again.  You're a pretty lucky little kid as it pertains to your classmates and teachers. 

I was cleaning the other day and came across your class photo from this year.  I put it away, but then figured just in case it got misplaced in the future, I'd better document it here.  Mommy, although usually pretty organized, can occasionally lose her mind and put things places where I think they will be safe and lose them forever.  It's a gift, what can I say? 

Here's your Three Year Old class photo.  From front to back, left to right:
You, Carter, Addie, Lauren, Ellasyn,
Bryce Avery, Miley Rose, Ms. Katie, Natalie, Avery, Connor, Ms. Mallory and Ben
It will be neat to see who in this group is in your class next year; you've made some really good friends in this group, and it will be fun to watch you all grow up together.  And then maybe some of you will all go off to kindergarten together, and there I go getting all sappy again.  Time to stop while I'm ahead. 
Congratulations on another great year, Buddy Boy.  Daddy and I are so proud of you!
Love forever and always,

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

We Need A Time Machine!

Dear Ian,

Do you realize what week we're on?  We have exactly two days of school remaining this week.  Yup, it's that time again.  School is almost out for the summer, and Mommy is left sitting in the dust wondering how we got to the end of yet another school term.

What a year you've had!  This year you had two amazing teachers in Ms. Katie and Ms. Mallory.  They have been so great with you, and I am extraordinarily thankful that you have spent all this time in their care and tutelage.  You have learned a ton, made some new friends and grown up so very much in just a short span of time. 

I spent a few minutes looking back at the post I wrote about this time last year, and I don't want to be redundant, so I am going to let pictures speak more than my writing.  Once again, Ms. Jan helped all the classes put on a great end-of-the-year show, and your teachers and Ms. Lynn, the art teacher, had art displays set up.  And as usual, Mommy got all teary during the last song.  Man, than Ms. Jan knows how to make all us sappy mommies cry. 

This last week of school has also been a lot of fun for you.  Monday of this week was Pajama Day, so you got to wear your jammies to school.  Well, technically, Mommy had to make a Wal-Mart run at 9pm on Sunday night to get you short sleeved jammies as all of yours had long sleeves and pants.  But we got 'em and you wore 'em.  It took some convincing, but you made it the whole day wearing something that "wasn't normal."  Tuesday was bike day, where you and all of your friends got to bring your bikes and trikes to school to ride around in the parking lot.  I got to sneak out and take a few pictures of that event.  And that brings us to today, which was Wacky Wednesday.  Straight-laced little you was not really into the wackiness, and that was ok.  Your teachers really got into the spirit of it. 

And here I am again, wondering how in the world this week got here so quickly!  You just started this school year last week, it seems!  Well, maybe not to your teachers, but I digress...  Doing some quick math brings me to the realization that you only have two more years left at Advent until you're off to Kindergarten, and I start to hyperventilate a little.  I am not ready for all this!  Slow down time!
But anyhoo.  I am going to cut all that out right now.  It's time to enjoy the present.  So now, without any more of my sappiness, here's the pictures from your 2013 End Of The Year program and a few from your last week at Advent for this year. 

 Here you come!  Playing Lummi Sticks 
 Playing your Lummi Sticks on stage.  Left to right is Carter, you, Addie and Ben
 Doing a little routine with hoops. Behind you is Bryce Avery
 Doing a great job!
 Here's your whole class.  Your teachers are awesome
 Wearing guitars and getting ready to do the "Body Boogie"
 Boogie-ing with your friends Lauren, Bryce Avery, Carter and Addie
 Ribbon Routine!
 Getting into the ribbon routine.  And thanks so much for being up front so I could get pictures :)
 Here you are with your art display
 Close up of you and your art.  You helped your teachers make the cool shirt you're wearing.
 Your class outside on bike day
 So much fun!
 It's a little bike traffic jam!
There's my boy!
So, two days left...  sigh.  I will do my best to finish up your works of art posts on which I am behind, and I will wrap up this school year.  Begrudgingly, I might add, because it means that you are growing up so quickly.  But we have a blast of a summer coming up, and I am going to have a ton to write about, I am sure.  I cant wait to spend the summer playing with you!
Love always,