Friday, June 16, 2017

The Princess Turns Two!

  We’re in birthday season at our house!  And because of that, Kyleigh has caught on to this whole deal pretty quickly.  Of course we always celebrate their birthdays, but I hadn’t planned on a party.  Meme and Pops and our family planned to sing happy birthday with some cupcakes….but Kyleigh had other plans.  We started talking to her about her fast approaching day….and she talked back.

  “Kyleigh, happy, me?....Meme come?  Pops come?  Daddy come?  Mommy come?  Caleb come?  Levi come?”  Yes of course Kyleigh, we will all be there, we love you….I truly couldn’t believe she understood enough to ask!  But she wasn’t done…..”Jordan come?  Alex come?.....”  Umm….yeah!  Sure!  I hope....!

   So our little family celebration turned into a mini family/neighborhood party J  It was so sweet.  She is just so precious…..and I have to say it…..I really can’t believe she’s already two!  As was expected, it’s felt even faster with number four.  There are so many differences with her than the others…..and with all of these older siblings, she has wanted to grow up so fast!  She does all she can to keep up with them.

   This little girl is so full of ready to experience and enjoy everything.  She loves to laugh and be play and climb.....she loves animals, especially dogs.....she loves to sing, usually requesting Old MacDonald or The Wheels on the Bus......she loves Paw Patrol and demands that all of the little toys sleep with her which always sends us on a wild goose chase fun adventure each night......she is strongly opinionated and lets you know it.....she adores her siblings.....she is such a daddy's girl, asking where he is each morning as soon as she wakes up.....she has an amazing imagination.....she brings so much joy to all of our lives and she is LOVED so very much.  She is such a gift.   

   I knew this years photo shoot would be a challenge.  It's pretty rare for this little one to stop moving, and even more so for me to catch her looking and smiling.  But we had so much fun running around the park with her (and even had friends join us this time which made it even more fun!) and capturing her adorable little personality.  

I started taking pictures on the opposite side, thinking she wouldn't see the horses across the way until we had made our way around for a while.  She saw the horses immediately and made a bee line for sweet to see how fascinated she was with them. 

Our little impromptu party later in the day......

Sweet Meme and Pops always making their days special.  So excited to have her own bike!

Me!  My cake!  I loved watching her excitement....I also was incredibly amused by how many times she thanked me.  "Happy, me....thank you mama."  (picking up container of plastic spoons) "spoons..thank you mama."  "birthday, me, thank you mama."  Over and over and over....

She loved her cupcakes....or maybe just the frosting...or maybe just the fact that the had paw patrol on them?  I'm fairly certain she took one or two bites out of about eight different cupcakes throughout the course of the night...

She hasn't quite mastered the concept of things being's actually an ongoing challenge....every time we go to the grocery store she somehow manages to chew through the package of at least one thing in the cart.....

Thank goodness....her Jordan came!  She was SO excited!  

And then again when Bailey showed up....she squealed and yelled his name.....

It was a beautiful night....and a really fun day altogether.....I think our little princess felt pretty loved and special!  
We did most of our celebrating yesterday because we're off on a fun trip for the weekend....but before we left we had to have a little more fun on the actual day :) 

This girl loves her donuts!! She was thrilled with the surprise :) 

She kept insisting these gifts were from Meme and Pops.....hey, all good things come from grandparents, right? Too funny. 

SO excited about some more paw Levi may actually get a chance to play with his!

Look! (her favorite word these days)

Finally, we went for her first Build a Bear experience.....she was mesmerized....and knew just what she wanted...and didn't want!  

She didn't understand why she had to take the frumpy looking Skye. "No, that one!"  She wanted the one already kid!

She was a bit reserved with all the jumping with the heart, rubbing the heart etc....I'm fairly certain she thought the lady was crazy.

She did NOT want anything to do with Skye's clothes.....woohoo, she's learning how to save money already! :)  

Oh how we love this precious little girl.  She is such a blessing!
Happy 2nd Birthday Kyleigh!

Saturday, June 10, 2017

Our School Star!

About 7 weeks ago, Levi transitioned to a new bus, new teachers, new classmates.  While he seemed unfazed, I really struggled with the decision of whether to make the move now or wait until next school year.  In the end, it seemed best to have him settle in to his new classroom sooner rather than later.  My heart broke for him, as transitions like this usually come with several weeks (sometimes months) of difficulty as he tests everyone and everything all over again.  I felt like I was setting him up to struggle.  

I waited for the feedback.....the notes or calls about the extreme behaviors.  Instead, Levi came home with smiley faces next to most categories of the day.  Maybe an intermittent sad face, but overall.....a LOT of happy faces.  And he'd come off of the bus telling me "happy!"  

My heart explodes each time his teacher sends a message about how sweet Levi has been, or how hard he is much he fits right in, and how SMART he is!  He's made soooo much progress they'll say....and I am blown away by what he has accomplished in seven weeks, all while adjusting to so much newness!  We had the sweetest moment a week or so ago.....he came home and I asked him about his day....he doesn't usually tell me much.  It's hard.  I often don't understand.  It was his first field day....he SO wanted to share with me.  His teacher had sent pictures and even some videos via a classroom app, so I knew all about it.  And as he tried to share with me, I new exactly what he was talking about!  I could tell he was excited....and at one point he stopped and asked "you?!"  He wondered if I was there....because how on earth did I understand everything he had done?!  It wasn't just the pictures....those helped to clarify and helped me to ask more purposeful questions....but he was really able to express to me all that he had done.  It seems so small....but I doubt I'll forget it.  It was priceless.  

Each week, a student is chosen in each grade to be the school star.  I received a message from his teacher letting me know that she chose Levi, and it would be in the newspaper the following day.  She went on to explain why she had chose him.  It's not that his behavior is perfect....he needs his time outs here and there as a little re-set....but despite all of that, he has shown "perseverance and a willingness to do his best."  She talked about how most kids don't face school changes so late in the year and how he has handled it so well.  I love that she really sees Levi....she gets him....she enjoys working with him and celebrating his achievements.   I could not be more thankful for this that seemed to scary, and possibly wrong.  God knew what this sweet boy needed...and He could not have put him in a better place.  

We are SO proud of our little star!!