Walk This Way

This year was the first year that both kids were of age to attend Vacation Bible School, so we made it a family affair. We signed both kids up and Eric and I volunteered to be small group leaders.

In our awesome shirts with this year's theme
VBS is for kids ages preschool through 5th grade. The driving message this year was to walk God's way. This was a 5 day production that involved a dance team, a drama team, crafts, snacks, games and lessons.

I had the privilege to lead a group of five kindergarteners. They were engaged and inquisitive. They worshiped with song and dance. They asked a ton of questions. And as exhausting as the week was, I found myself sentimental about it coming to an end. The sweet, innocent hearts of my five kids were filled to capacity with love for Jesus, and I am so honored to be a part of the journey to grow in their faith.

Meanwhile, my own children were involved in the preschool curriculum. They came home everyday with an awesome craft, singing new songs and showing off their new knowledge about God.
Shirts they made during VBS
This week was unlike anything I've ever been a part of. I am so humbled by the entire experience and it is my hope that this becomes an annual event for our family.


Biker Chick

My first born is officially riding a bicycle. I cannot even tell you what kind of emotions this has me feeling. I cannot believe she is big enough to be doing this. But above all else, I am so so incredibly proud of her.

Bought this bike with her own money
When Riley was just a little over a year old, we got her a push tricycle. It has no pedals and converts to a balance bike. We had spoken to a lot of seasoned parents about it and they suggested this learning method with high praises. And after our experience with it and Riley, I completely share those praises.

Riley transitioned to a Schwinn balance bike last year and by the end of the summer, she was riding pretty confidently.

When sunshine finally approached this year, she hopped on and we knew she was about ready for a pedal bike. 

I flashed back to when I learned how to ride a bike. I vividly remembered my dad pushing me off to a start and holding on to my seat and running along side me as I pedaled. I was fully prepared to do the same for Riley, but to our surprise, her transition to a pedal bike was completely independent. She hopped on and figured it out right away. 

Here is a video of what is probably her third or fourth ride on a bicycle:

I wish I could described in words how much determination was exuding from my little girl. We could tell that the day would not come to an end until she was comfortably riding a bicycle-- and that she was. She's been on a bike every day since, always with the biggest smile on her face. 

That joy in its purest form is the ultimate reward for any parent. 


You Are My Sunshine

This year, Connor man had his first End-Of-Year program. We knew he was excited about it because he was practicing on his own every day. He was singing songs I had no idea he knew (in places people probably shouldn't sing) and I could tell this was going to mean a lot to him.

We took him to Riley's most recent program so he could get a glimpse of what is involved and shake any nerves he might have. But our guy had no nerves to shake. He was excited, confident, and sang loud and clear, just as we would expect our extroverted child to.

So proud of my son!

Here he is, singing "the Phonics song" with his classmates:

Here are some videos of him practicing at home:

I am so proud of our little dude. He truly is our sunshine.


Say Cheese!

To say I dislike going to the dentist is an understatement. I attribute it to the traumatic experiences I had as a child. With that in mind, it was a goal of mine to make my children's dental experiences as comfortable as possible. And with the help of amazing pediatric dentists in our area, it appears that goal has been achieved.

We went in for the kid's biannual visits this week. Connor took his first x-rays and Riley took her first molar x-rays. I was so impressed with how calm and comfortable the kids were in every scenario.
getting ready for cleanings

making the dentist look cool

looking cute for xrays
On the topic of cheese, the kiddies also experienced their first visit to Chuck E. Cheese. Riley was invited to a birthday party and Connor came with us. The visit was perfect-- there were so many things for kids their ages to enjoy. They loved it and have been begging me to return ever since. It makes for a good bribe when behavior issues arise. 

Mommy rules this game, son.

cheesing for Chuck


Strait to Vegas

Here's a very important milestone in our children's lives-- for the very first time, they were away from both their parents. My lovely mother-in-law flew out to take care of the kiddies so that Eric and I could get away and have some grown-up fun for a few days. Our destination-- Las Vegas!
Eric soaking in Fremont Street

The world's largest golden nugget!

The most important meal of the day,
courtesy of Todd English

King of Country-- George Strait
We met our good friends the Pfeiffers out here, spent a little time gambling, a little more time drinking, but a lot of the time laughing. It was a fun-filled and relaxing trip-- much needed for Eric and myself. We haven't vacationed together just the two of us since the summer before Riley was born.

My MIL was amazing-- she had an event every day for the kids. She had them engaged and interested in something every day. That made it that much easier for us to relax while away from them.

With how well this trip went, I am surely looking forward to many more getaways like this.


Breckenridge Staycation 2016

We just got home from what was one of my favorite family vacations. It is so interesting to experience things we've done before so differently now that the kids are getting older and are able to do so much more.

We left for Breckenridge on Friday morning and arrived at Frisco Adventure Park shortly after lunch. We took the kids tubing and they loved every single second of it. I can't even tell you how many times we went up and down these slopes.

At Frisco Adventure Park

Eric and Riley tubing together

Connor man and me tubing together
Here's a little video I managed to capture of the 4 of us tubing together. The happiness on the kids' faces make my heart swell:

The next day, we checked the kids into ski school. I got a ski lesson myself and Eric brushed up on his skills solo. It was unique for each of us to have our own thing to do, but it proved to be really fun. In true Connor fashion, he spent his day flirting with his instructors and making them laugh. Riley was our superstar ski student. She even got on a lift and went down a long slope. I managed to get some footage of her skiing at the end of the day, and I could tell she was very tired but she was so determined to learn and I love her for it.
Looking handsome. No skiing involved.
Here's the clip of Riley skiing:

The bedtime routine that night was so easy-- everyone was exhausted from our long day. We rested up and headed home the next morning, and the kids were so disappointed to leave. And I was a little, too. It was just such an enjoyable vacation, we made so many sweet memories, and I can't wait to do it again next season.


Easter 2016

This year, we stayed home for Easter but that did not make it any less special. In fact, this might've been my favorite Easter to date. 

In crazy Colorado weather fashion, we were greeted with the biggest Spring snow storm since 2006. But when life hands you snow, you get festive and make snow bunnies.

We also decided to attend Easter church service on Saturday, to help with the crowds expected on Easter Sunday. I can't say enough great things about our church and their children's ministry. Riley and Connor each had a craft involving Jesus and we tried our best to explain to them what we were celebrating this funfilled weekend.
Dressed up for Easter service
The kids went to bed and I immediately started playing Easter bunny. They had baskets filled with goodies waiting for them, and of course eggs hidden throughout the house (thanks to the snowstorm). The Easter bunny left eggs outside each of the kid's bedroom doors, and the excitement of finding those eggs is what Eric and I got woken up to. Riley ran into our room early the next morning, Connor shortly at her tail, and was out of breath from excitement, explaining to us that the Easter bunny had arrived and even went into her and her brother's rooms. It was still dark out, so we had to turn on the lights for them to see the rest of the chaos the Easter bunny had left. After the found all the eggs, sweetfest 2016 began with breakfast:

We spent the day doing more Easter crafts, took a nice sugar crashed nap and had Easter lunch/dinner with the Dunns, where more Easter egg hunts were to be found. 

That night, I tucked Riley in and she was still grinning and told me that today was the best day ever and Easter was officially her favorite holiday. It really was a sweet day for our family, and I also fell asleep smiling about it.