Thursday, July 30, 2009

Before and After

A few weeks ago my wonderful sister-in-law, Gabby, was visiting for a few days and gave the kids back to school haircuts. I have been debating cutting Madison's hair drastically for almost a year because almost all her curls are gone :( I decided it was time. I am so glad I did because it looks so healthy now. The curls didn't come back like I thought they would but maybe in time they will. Thanks Aunt Gabby!



Monday, July 27, 2009

Swim Class Fun!

A few weeks ago the kids ended their 2 weeks of swim classes. They had such a good time and learned a lot during those 2 weeks. Madison is still taking private lessons with Anna who taught both Taylor and Caleb's class.

Taylor's last day was spent learning some safety lessons after working on her strokes. They learned how to save someone who was drowning with numerous different tools including a pool noodle, a towel and a lifeguards floatation device.

Perfecting her stroke

Taylor saving her teacher from drowning (can you spot what Taylor is doing wrong?)

Yep, you don't lean over the water while saving someone b/c you can end up in the water yourself :)

Anna showing them how to do a back flip off the diving board...they were so impressed!

Caleb working on his dive.

Taylor and Anna

Caleb and Noah with Anna

And Madison had to have her picture made with Anna too :)

Friday, July 17, 2009

Madison's 4th Birthday

A few weeks ago Madison turned 4. We celebrated low key with a birthday cake at lunch with the a few of the cousins, Nana, Peepaw, and Rachel at the Glade. Then once we got home to Knoxville we had dinner at El Mezcal with Pops and Nana. And then if was off to their house to open a their present. We are planning on celebrating in style with a Chuck E Cheese party in a few weeks once everything has calmed down and everyone that she wants to invite is going to be able to come.

My big birthday girl....I can't believe she is 4

Every little girl needs a tutu :)

Getting ready to "open" her birthday present from Nana and Pops

She was so excited!

Look at that smile :)

All she wanted was a "tiny bike". She was so happy to get it!

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Madison's Swim Lessons

Madison is also taking swim lessons at UT though hers are private. Taylor and Caleb's teacher is also teaching Madison. Madison swims like a fish if she has floaties on, she will even run and jump in but you take those floaties off and it is a whole nother story :) Her teacher won't let her wear floaties (in fact they aren't allowed at UT's pools). Madison had her first lesson last Friday and will have another this Friday. She did really good....took her a minute to get used to being in the water with no floaties but she is getting the hang of it. The fact that she loves her teacher is a huge plus! We haven't been letting her wear them as much but when she wants to jump in the deep end we have her wear them. Here are a few pictures from her first lesson :)

Her teacher tied a noodle around her to help her keep afloat without compromising her ability to "scoop" her arms. Madison loved it!

Saturday, July 11, 2009

Swim Lessons for Taylor and Caleb

Taylor and Caleb have been taking swim lessons last week and this week down at UT (thanks for Cindy for telling us about them) and loving it. The first day Caleb and Taylor were both in level 5/6. This turned out to be a little too much for Caleb as he was having to swim laps on a huge pool with kids ages 9-11. He just couldn't keep up so his teacher moved him to her other class. He is a little more advanced than the other kids in that class but his teacher says it is because he has access to a pool and swims everyday.

At the end of their first lesson they were given the option do jump off the diving board. They have a low dive (a few feet above the water) and a high dive (15 ft above the water). We asked the kids if they wanted to do the high dive and they did. Taylor went up first and hesitated a few minutes before jumping right off. Then it was Caleb's turn, he didn't hesitate at all....walked to the end of the board and jumped right off! I was so proud of him. He came out of the water smiling and saying how much he fun that was. His teacher was so impressed since the other kids in level 5/6 were older than him. She said she had never had a kid who was 6 to go off the high dive on the first day :)

Taylor jumping off the high dive

Caleb going off the high dive!

Caleb working on floating

Taylor right after going off the high dive

Caleb working on diving off the low dive..gotta work on his form :)

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Dollywood again!

We love our Dollywood Season passes. They provide hours of fun for all of us. We went a few weeks ago and my parents joined us for the day. We had a wonderful time, it wasn't too hot and the lines weren't too long.

Our 1st stop was Journey to the Center of the Earth in 4D. It was a fun way to start the day.

I LOVE this picture of Caleb in his 3D glasses:)

Taylor sporting her glasses


This year Madison had grown enough that she was able to ride a few more rides. Madison was especially excited about the 2 water rides--River Battle and River Rampage!

Madison riding The River Rampage

Nana and Pops chilling while watching Caleb and Madison playing and Taylor and I were riding Thunderhead.

My dad rode Mystery Mine with Taylor and I but there wasn't any way to get a picture of that :) Sure wish I could have!

Sweet sisters at the end of the day :)

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Fun times at VBS

All 3 of the kids were able to enjoy 2 wonderful VBS's this year, one that was huge and the other a little smaller. The kids love everything about VBS from the songs, crafts, making new friends, and of course the snacks :)

Madison sitting with her class

Caleb and his friend Will singing with their class

Caleb with Jungle Jim and King Jake

Madison going down the giant slide!

Caleb going down the slide!

Caleb enjoying some yummy desserts at the closing ceremony :)

Madison enjoying some yummy cotton candy..this was a first!

Caleb, Will and Sam waiting to jump in the bouncy thing (notice the display of brotherly love between Sam and Will)

Sunday, July 5, 2009

Father's Day 2009

I seem to be so behind on blog posts from June that I will be blogging June's happenings in July :)

Father's Day was low key. We don't go out to eat on holidays b/c it is normally so crowded and the wait to get a table for our family since we have both sets of parents here is forever that we celebrate by eating out the day before or just eating at home together.

We ate at Sam's with the Tomlinson's on Father's Day this year :) Matt got a new camera bag for Father's Day.

I am so blessed to be married to a wonderful man who is a fabulous father. He is so patient and kind and loving. He is always willing to play with the kids and strives so hard to provide for all their needs. I love watching him interact with the kids.

Friday, July 3, 2009

Very awesome bumper sticker

I am not normally the kind of person who decorates my car with bumper stickers however I just recently saw one that I would be honored to place on my read

Only 2 defining forces have ever offered to die for you....Jesus Christ and the American Soldier. One died for your soul, the other for your freedom.

I plan on purchasing one of these for my van as soon as I can find out where to get it. Such a powerful message.

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Whirlpool tub + kids shampoo = LOTS of bubbles :)