Monday, October 16, 2017

Seabrook Vacation - Day !

Quite a few months ago I started planning another trip to Seabrook. I loved it so much when we went a couple years ago for my 35th birthday that I wanted to return. This time the around there weren't quite as many people with us. Uncle Ry, Aunt Stephie and the Kuch family couldn't make it. With there being less people our housing options were greater. I ended up choosing this house because it fit us perfectly, but I also loved the name. We had walked past it when we were there two years ago and I thought the sign was SO cute. It was a giant wooden cassette tape and the name of the house was Hooked On A Feeling! A week or so before our stay Aunt Stephie wanted to see the house and to our surprise they had changed the name to Capeside Cottage. They remodeled a bit and felt that name went with the house better. :P 



Here's the house. It's was small, but perfect for a vacation house. It was right in the middle of everything really. Just a short walk from the pool, playground and shops, but thankfully not on the main street. 





Here's the view of the living room from the staircase. 




The kitchen and dining room! 



Ga-Ga & Pa had the king size master bedroom on the first floor! 






On the second floor was this great loft area...this was the kids domain! It was perfect!!! Right behind Michael was the kids room. 




I fell in love with the built in bunks! The other wall had the other 2 bunks. I loved that they were all together and really they did well. In fact there weren't even fights about who got what bunk! 




Our bedroom was on the 2nd floor as well. 




Here's the bathroom we shared with the kids.



The first place the kids wanted to go to was the park. The weather was really nice when we got there, but the forecast was showing rain for a couple days of our vacation. We knew we needed to get out and enjoy it while we could. 




These monkey bars were new. Jack is all about the monkey bars. 





I think they had the basketball court last time, but the kids were all about the playground. 





I love that they had this basket lowered for the kids. 




Michael and I were playing HORSE on one of the normal height hoops and we were AWFUL!!! 




Love this action shot of Pa & Zeke. 




The area past the basketball court was all new. It was a new neighborhood called The Farm District. Jack, Zeke and I walked back to check things out and the horses came over to the fence so they got to pet one. 




Later on we walked into the little town area. Michael got shuffleboard poles and disks. 



We LOVE shuffleboard. In fact I might have actually thought about putting in a shuffleboard in our backyard. Too bad our yard isn't long enough! 




And look at this....photographic proof of Ga-Ga & Pa playing a game! 




It was so much fun! I did have to laugh though because the next day my arms were a little sore from shooting hoops and playing shuffleboard. Sheesh I'm outta shape!!! 

Sunday, October 15, 2017

Pregnancy & Infant Loss Remembrance!

So working and having a computer that doesn't allow you to actually get on the Internet makes blogging a little tough. Thankfully my hubby is awesome and we've got the computer stuff fixed. The working thing is still going to get in the way, but I am going to try to blog more...promise!!! I know at least my Mom and Dad are thrilled about that. :) 

I couldn't let this day go by without remembering my babies. My two boys that are waiting for me in heaven. 

Here's what I know...

- They are in a better place....the best place to be exact! 
- They are missed and not just by me! 
- They are remembered and thought of often! 
- Their presence and absence thereof doesn't go unnoticed!
- Even though we have other children they did not replace the two we've lost! 
- The hurt never truly goes away! 
- Tears can come at anytime! 

Something else I know is that through my loss I have helped others. I would never have asked to miscarry twice, but I love that God can work things for good and through my pain I can in turn be a support for others going through the same situation. 

Brayden Anthony Martin would have been 11 years old yesterday and Kyan William Martin would have been 6 years old on the 28th of this month. I think it's so appropriate that both of them were due during the month we celebrate pregnancy and infant loss. 

I am 1 out of the 1 in 4 women that have lost a baby. It's not some group I wanted to join, but it is part of my story. 

Saturday, September 23, 2017

Zeke's First Day & My First Day....AKA I Got A Job!!!!

September 11th was Zeke's first day of Kindergarten!!!! 



Class of 2030



I'm this big!!!! 




 Class of 2025, 2026, 2029 & 2030!!!





Ga-Ga bought Zeke is his first day of school shirt. The T-shirt underneath has an arcade game on it and it says Game Over! Ga-Ga also bought his new shoes! 



 \

Dinosaur bone backpack!!!  






That's a big sign for a big boy!!! 






 He's such a handsome boy!!! 






Let's go Mom!!!! 






 I drove the kids to school for Zeke's 1st day and then I walked Zeke to his door. 






I accidentally clicked the HDR button on my phone so the two pictures of him and I together are darker than they should be! Oops! 






Standing in line! We got there right when Ms. Davidson opened the door. Yay for not having to wait! 





He looks terrified in this picture, but he really wasn't. I think it's so funny how he was not wanting to stand close to the person in front of him! 





The super shy finger has come up!




At his desk!





We found his coat and backpack hook!!! 

After this I took him back to his desk and helped him open his Play-Doh. I didn't want to linger long so I kissed him goodbye and then I left. 

When I got to the van it really hit me. I didn't sob or even have tears fall down my face, but I did get teary eyed. For the last 10 1/2 years I have had kids at home with me. There have been a few distinct times in my life where I have honestly felt the page turn and the chapter end on that part of my life's story per se. I remember the last week of being at high school and knowing that everything was going to change. I was truly going to be an adult and my childhood was officially over. That's how I feel about this shift in my life except on a whole new level. It's not just a page turned and the chapter is over...it's the book has finished and it's time to pick up the next installment in the series! 

I think I feel that way not just because all my kids are in school, but also because....I got a job!!! 

I remember quite a few years ago Michael had mentioned that I would be going back to work once the kids were all in school and I thought he was straight up nuts! I had no desire to do that. I wanted to be a career homemaker. I wanted to be able to have my house in tip top shape. I was going to volunteer and be able to help friends out when they needed it. I had plans! Hahahaha! Fast forward a few years and I had a couple kids in school and I started to have the tiniest flicker inside me that thought it might actually be fun to work outside my home one day. Not long after that I started telling everyone that I was going to work at my kids school once Zeke was in Kindergarten. I was going to apply to be a Sub Para so I could get a feel for the job and see if that was what I really wanted to do. At the end of May I worked really hard and got my resume all updated and I submitted that to the school district. All my Para friends were so confident that I'd hear something. Months went by and nothing....not one email...not one phone call...nothing. I in no way think that the school district not contacting me has anything to do with me or my experience. I'm completely qualified. The simple fact is...that's not where God wanted me to be!!! 




Last Easter after church I was walking out to the van and my Pastor stopped me and asked if I'd be interested in being the Administrative Assistance at the church. I told him that I would actually be interested, but that I wouldn't be available until September because I wasn't going to put Zeke in daycare. That was that! Weeks and months went by and even as I was applying for the job at the school I felt my heart pulled more and more towards the job at the church. I did feel like I should follow through on my original intentions of applying at the school, but I was feeling apprehensive about actually taking the job if it was offered to me. First off I'm used to volunteering at my kids school. Being a Para and volunteering are two completely different things. I was afraid that I would really dislike not being able to help out the teachers. My heart has always been to lighten their load so they can work with the kids and not be stuck in the staff room making copies. I was honestly 100% sure that the church would hire someone for the job LONG before September! That's months and months and they would surely need the help. 

In July when I was volunteering at church office, Pastor Andy stopped and asked me if I'd still be interested in the job. I told him that I had actually been wanting to talk with him about it. About a week later we had a really great meeting and he offered me the job. It was super funny because he offered me the job and then after that asked for my resume! :) I was so happy that I had gone through all the trouble to get it updated when applying for the job at the school!!! Of course it was July and I wasn't going to start work in the summer time. My official start date was 09/11! I had already come in to the office for two days after we got home from Wyoming....just to get a feel for things. I knew right away I was going to love working at the church. First off I LOVE my church....I love the people....I love being there! The night that I came home from my first day I was SO excited to tell Michael all about MY day!!

In regards to my schedule I work Monday - Thursday 9-3. It's so perfect for me and the kids. We all get ready in the morning, I take them to the bus and then I drive straight to work. When I get off in the afternoon I get home with just enough time to put all my stuff away and then walk down to the bus stop to pick them up. Since I have Friday's off I'm still going to be able to volunteer at the school. I'm going to be there the first and third Friday's of the month. On the second Friday I have an outstanding date set up to hang out with my best friend Kim and then I'll use the 4th Friday of the month as my monthly shopping day.

In regards to their days off, of course working for the school would have been ideal, but we are going to make it work. First off Michael gets banker holidays because he works for the county. He actually gets holiday's off that the kids don't....hello Columbus Day! Secondly I have awesome parents that were used to watching Zeke for me every single Thursday all throughout the school year. Now they aren't having to do that so they are going to help us out when we need them too. Of course during the summer months will be the hardest, but we'll cross that bridge when we get there. I already have plans in my head for how to make it work so I'm most definitely not worried about it! 




Zeke Man got to ride the bus home with the big kids on his first day. 





He had a great day! He didn't eat much of his lunch at all and he had a hard time getting down from one of the toys at recess, but he seemed to do just fine! 

As for me I enjoyed my first official day as well!!! I feel a bit overwhelmed just because I don't know all of my responsibilities yet....or even the ones I know I don't know exactly how to fulfill them yet, but I do know that in just few short months I'll feel so much more confident. I'm so excited for the new book in my life's story to unfold. I most definitely love it when God writes my story!!

Friday, September 22, 2017

The End Of An Era!!!

On Friday September 8th I thought it would be fun to go on a little outing with Zeke. We've gone to the new IKEA before, but it was a super rushed trip and we didn't even get to eat there. 



We walked around the store and picked up some kids cups....for some reason ours have almost all disappeared . After we got those we went over to the restaurant. They had just started serving lunch so it was perfect timing. 



Zeke got a kids chicken and fries meal and I got a kids Swedish meatball meal and a bowl of soup. 




Later that day he walked with me to the bus stop for the very last time before becoming a student.

Thursday, September 21, 2017

First Day Of School 2017!!!

This year our school's start time changed. Last year they had a lot of trouble with the buses being late so they moved the bell schedule around to accommodate that. Hopefully it won't be an issue this year. The best part about the school's time change is the kids gets to sleep another 40 minutes in the morning!!! They used to have to get up at 6:35am and now they get to sleep until 7:15! It's so nice for them! Since they start later that means they are out later, but it's not really all that bad. They used to get off the bus at 3:05pm, but now they are getting off at 3:30pm.




Ella Grace is a 1st Grader!!!!! 





She's so cute! I liked the outfit I bought for her in Cody so much I thought it would make a great first day at school outfit. She is as an old neighbor said "a little ray of sunshine!" 




Ella's backpack she used last year is still just fine, but I found this one at Value Village for $5 and it was 50% off day...and it's Jansport!!! Score!!!! The funny thing is the polka dots match her polka dot jacket that she has perfectly! 




Time for graduation shirts! 




Getting so big!!! 




This year instead of the big frame I decided it would be fun to do a chalkboard instead. I bought this chalkboard contact paper on Amazon and just stuck it on the glass that goes to this frame. I spray painted the frame itself a fun color to jazz it up. I also bought these colorful chalkboard markers on Amazon as well. It was really fun figuring out how I wanted the sign to look. I think it turned out super cute! 




My big 5th grader! His last year of Elementary school! That's nuts!!!! 




Ga-Ga bought Owen his Minecraft shirt in Cody when we went shopping! It's totally him!!!




Same backpack as last year...hopefully it will last another couple years! 






This used to look so huge on him! 






 Being so cool!!!! 






In just a few more years that shirt will fit him! 






I love that he still humors me with all these pictures! 






My handsome Jackson!!





A 4th grader!!! 






Jackson needed a new backpack SO badly....in fact on the last day of school he came home, we emptied his backpack and threw it away...it was awful! This year Ga-Ga bought him this one from Target. 






I love how on the part that is up against his back it says, "In case of an emergency I brought my supersuit"! And his first day of school shirt from Ga-Ga was a Spiderman shirt so that was pretty perfect!!!! 





I love how I made Jack's graduation shirt differently from the other kids. It's so him! 






It's not as big on him as it once was!!! 





I love that he wanted his faux hawk for the first day. He looks so cool!!!





All together now!!! 





Zeke's turn to get in on the pictures. He was feeling a bit left out, but he didn't start kindergarten until the following Monday....post coming up! 





 
I'm absolutely in love with this picture...it's the wallpaper on my phone!!! 






I think Ella is going to have so much fun with Zeke at school. She's going to get to show him all sorts of things since she already knows so much!!! 


When I was making the chalkboard frame I also put the contact paper on these little frames I had. The kids asked if they could each have one and I said yes. I had them write their names on them for fun! 
 



Ella so girly with hearts! 




This is totally Owen....he likes simple and didn't want to spend much time on it....very matter of fact that boy! 





So Jackson...lots of colors and lightning bolts! 





Zeke thought he should be a ninja in his picture! 





I love how his Z is backwards!!!! 





We did the same thing as we did the day before...parked in the neighborhood and walked to school.






Owen's classroom is in the portable on the left that's the closest. I was thinking they'd have the kids line up right out from the door, but they actually have wooden signs and then the kids line up behind the sign. I love how the kid in front of Owen smiled for the picture too! 





Jackson in line and ready to go! Sadly Jack's best friend Kimberly isn't in his class this year, but at least they get to see each other at recess! 





Ella had quite a few of her classmates from last year in her class. 






Ms. Sawyer came out and said, "Are you ready for 1st grade?!?!" 






After seeing the big kids off Zeke and I went to visit his teacher. He found his desk...it's so cute it's super low and his chair is actually a pillow. Some of the desk are high some have chairs without backs like the the table behind Zeke. I think it's great that they are trying out new things instead of just the standard seating. Zeke loves to be on the floor so I really think this is going to be good for him. 






I am SO over the moon excited that he got Ms. Davidson!!! All of my kids have gotten to be in her class and it just brings me so much joy! She's such an amazing teacher and Zeke is going to have so much fun in her classroom! Exciting stuff for sure!!! 

 



Even though I take them to school on their first day I always have them ride the bus home. This year the bus was a bit of a mess. They changed everything up due to the time changes at school so now the kids are riding route 2. They've been on route 1 for as long as they've gone to Woodmont so that's new. The biggest mess though was the discrepancies with paperwork and online information. The online info said route 2, but the paperwork said route 1. Online it said the bus was coming at 8:13am and then dropping off at 3:30pm, but on paper it said the bus was coming at 8:00am and dropping off at 3:12pm. A different paper said that the buses were arriving at school at 8:10! But how can that be if online it said the kids weren't even getting picked up until 8:13am???? A mess I tell you! Thankfully it's gotten all straightened out now!!! 





Jackson had a great first day even though he didn't get to see any of his friends from the other classrooms. The smoke from the forest fires was so bad the school kept all the kids inside for recess.  







Owen had an amazing first day! He loves his teacher....they have so many things in common like, "She's always wanted a cat since she was a kid and she doesn't like dogs!" 






Ella Bean loved her new teacher as well and she's made a new friend....she just can't remember her name!