Wednesday, September 22, 2010


On Tuesday Ava headed off to her first day of preschool. The day started nice and early when around 2 in the morning Kate woke mommy up with the flu. After a long rest of the night, she finally settled down just in time to get Ava off. Ahh, the life of a mom.

Ava's been very excited - some of her best buddies are at preschool with her and we've been talking about it for a while. So we went out front to take pictures and she was adamant at first that her backpack should be beside her. I'll spare you the entire photo shoot but here's a few of my favorites.

Her beloved butterfly backpack

Hamming it up

So off we headed to school. I told Ryan the closer we got to preschool the quieter she became. Ava LOVES anything like this but dreads new experiences. It's so hard as a mom when you wish you knew how to ease the transitions for her but know it just takes her time to absorb, relax and engage. I'm learning to let her set the pace more and connect on her own time table.

I obviously wasn't going to walk my newly sick babies into the classroom so we said goodbye outside. I was proud of my little girl though, because while it was hard for her to go, she didn't cry hardly at all and went (sober-faced) into the class. Just when I thought I'd at least get a picture of her and her teacher, she turned on me. And for the sake of her and her teacher, I headed on home.

As a little girl growing up, my dad brought us home flowers on the first day of school. The tradition continued at our house - it was so sweet to see Ava's face when she realized the flowers were for her only. She has since showed everyone who comes to our house and still thanks Ryan for them often. It's been pretty special. It's going to be a sad day when I say they finally have to go.

Daddy and his girls (yes that's Olivia hidden behind her hair)

Later that week, I snapped a quick photo of Ava walking in with her big kid buddy. She loves it, talked lots to me about what they do, can't wait to go back . . .and probably still hasn't said more than a few words at a time while AT school. I'm not worried at all - I know my little girl and she'll be at home in no time there.

I'm proud of you Ava Cherise!

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

First day of sunday school

Last sunday began a long week of "first's." All our girls started their first day of sunday school. Well, Ava started sunday school. Kate and Olivia got to have their first day in the toddler nursery. Mommy breathed a small (Big) sigh of relief that a very hard stretch of church days has eased a little bit. And Daddy? Daddy was just happy because . . .well, all 4 ladies in his house were happy. : ) Although I guess technically it was Daddy's first day back teaching sunday school again too. Missed that photo . . .

We never seem to get picture of the girls in their church clothes. We even missed an Easter dress photo shoot this year (as I hear gasps from all mothers of little girls). But trying to get all of us out the door just doesn't always leave time for that. So I put my expectations of posed photo shoots aside and we tried to quickly capture our girls.

Ava all excited for sunday school

Olivia knew she should be excited about something. Kate was thinking, "it's too early for this."

Kate's still thinking it's too early for this. : )

Monday, September 20, 2010


Over Labor Day weekend we went camping up in Michigan with Ryan's family. I was a little apprehensive how it would go with 3 little munchkins running around but truth be told, my girls are probably better campers than me! They loved it and we had lots of great help. The weather turned cold on us but we bundled up and had fun despite the cooler temperatures. The downside? I think I was too busy trying to stay warm to pull my camera out often. So here's a couple glimpses into the times I did.

Uncle David's glad we only have 3 children right now : )
The campground had a jumping "pillow" - a big inflatable trampoline in the ground. The twins loved it and Ava gradually warmed to it (a familiar scenario is our house)

Ava and Daddy

Daddy and Kate

Jumping on her own

Olivia tried out face painting for the first time - she was trying to figure out what the world was going on

We tried to get a picture of the 3 girls afterwards. Just one of those warm fuzzy moments throughout my days. : )

Ava loved her butterfly

Kate playing on the slide

Something is wrong with this picture? . . .

Busy coloring

A camping must? eating lots of snacks

I tried to make Ava take a quiet time the first day we were there and put her in Mom and Dad's pop-up so she wouldn't disturb the twins. After a few minutes, we saw someone spying on us. : )
On a side note - as of this past thursday, Ava's paci is no more. We had some sad moments but overall she's done really well.

We spent hours worth of our days walking/biking up and down the campground roads. I thought Kate and Olivia were going to walk their legs off. No idea how I didn't get a shot of them on one of their walks but Ava loved riding her bike so much.

Sunday morning we had "sunday school" with a live re-enactment of "The Good Samaritan." Ava was excited and ready to go with her church candy.

Grandpa (the good Samaritan) helping poor Uncle David out.

Kate and Olivia were intrigued.

Olivia snuggling Grandpa (candy and all)

We had one afternoon warm up enough to get to the beach. It was still breezy and cool but the girls didn't mind in the least. At the twins' age, Ava HATED the sand. Kate and Olivia couldn't get enough. It was so fun to see all the girls having so much fun.
Kate thought the tubes looked fun until she felt the water. COLD.
Ava had a ball playing in the sand and water. At point she thought she wanted to join Grandpa, Aunt Callie, Uncle David and Aunt Tara in the water. She got about waist deep and turned back. Smart like her mommy. : )

Olivia loved splashing.

Kate decided she preferred the sand.

This picture just makes me laugh a little

Building with Daddy in the sand

I was glad they were having fun. I was happier that someone "had" to stay out by the girls. : )

Snack time!

Taking a break from the wind

Ava trying to get warm again - I think it's fair to say she probably gets this more from her mom than her dad. : )

The finished projects (with a little help from Grandpa and Daddy)

Putting on the finishing details

Friday, September 17, 2010

come back Papa!

Olivia and Kate have a new pile of books waiting for you to read to them.

Thursday, September 16, 2010

oh, the life of a domesticated woman

Kate's just modeling what she sees people.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

waiting for daddy

My girls LOVE to wait for daddy at the end of a day. We file outside, play on the steps and a party ensues when Ryan pulls in the drive. Some day for memory's sake, I need to capture it on film.

But the other day I had a moment of panic that these days won't last. So I ran inside quick to try and snap a picture of Daddy's three girls waiting for him to come home.
Ava, Kate and Olivia say "cheese"
Mom, my girls have their eyes closed in as many pictures as you. : )
I tried again.

and again.

It's all about the memory - right?!

how I love these girls.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Olivia isn't too worried about the economy

Monday, September 13, 2010

her royal highness Ava

thank goodness at 3 I still have some say of what she wears outside our house.

Sunday, September 12, 2010

fun at the pool

On what I am convinced was the most beautiful saturday in august, we met my sister and her kids at a pool here in town.

Addy and Olivia
Auburn and Kate

Brynne and Ava
(would you believe they don't allow water wings for safety reasons? Ava was a trooper having to wear this bulky life jacket!)

And with that we were having too much fun to take more pictures.
After a long day, we finished the evening out at our place. And here we found Brecken, Braden and Ryan for much of the night. Uncle Ryan isn't going to be able to beat these guys for too much longer I think!