Downtown Atlanta

IMG_0350

This Georgia girl sure does love her Carolina man and her Carolina babies, but there will also be something about going back to Atlanta that feels like “home,” even though I haven’t lived there in 14 years. Whenever we make a trip back to the Peach state I like to incorporate a little bit of some of my childhood and growing up favorites for Jeffrey and the kids to experience. So when we went down to celebrate Annalee’s birthday this past weekend, we decided to take a trip downtown on our way home and visit the new World of Coca-Cola and Centennial Olympic park. The World of Coke was awesome! The kids had a great time meeting the polar bear, seeing how they make and bottle coke, learning a bit of the history, getting to hold one of the Atlanta Olympic torches, experiencing the 4D movie, and of course, trying lots of coke and different drinks from around the world! It was such a fun trip, and boy was I happy to try some coke again! After the World of Coke, we walked across the street through Centennial Park. The kids played on the playground, checked out the monuments and statues, and then got soaked in the Olympic ring fountain. It was really neat to visit again, and it brought back so many fun memories of when the Olympics were in Atlanta twenty years ago! The kids can’t wait to go back again and do the Sky Wheel, while this Momma really wants to visit the College Football Hall of Fame! Carolina, you are surely home now, but Atlanta, we sure do love your visits!

IMG_0642

Lovin’ on Annalee!

Last week Annalee came to spend a few days in Columbia! The kids were so very excited, and they couldn’t wait to give her lots of love! Sunday night they just had to show her all of their toys, and Monday we had a fabulously fun day at the zoo! We got to see lots of animals, ride the carousel, enjoy a picnic lunch, and Annalee loved splashing around at Waterfall Junction! Monday night all the cousins had a sleepover at Nanny and Pops’ house, and they got to go swimming, eat spaghetti for dinner, play and stay up past bedtime! And I’m sure there will be many more sleepovers in the future!

IMG_0506

IMG_0534

IMG_0647

And this weekend we took a trip to Atlanta to celebrate Annalee’s first birthday! She had a super adorable pool party with friends and family on Saturday evening! She wasn’t too sure of her smash cake, but she definitely loved all the presents! It was such a fun weekend celebrating the big one year old! Happy birthday, Annalee! We love you!

IMG_0600

FullSizeRender

IMG_0611

Daddy’s Boys

Last Friday, August 12, was National Middle Child day! And these two middles sure are just alike in so many ways! Jeffrey and Reece like karate, music, playing the guitar, watching movies, being in the air conditioning, blooming onions from outback, chips and salsa, food on the grill, and root beer. They don’t prefer chocolate or waking up early, and they are always the first to get bitten by mosquitoes when they are outside. They are two peas in a pod! On fighting nights at karate class, Jeffrey usually brings his gi and his gear to fight with them, and Reece loves any chance to beat up on his Daddy a bit!

FullSizeRender

And while Jeffrey and Reece act just like, it’s definitely Jeffrey and Carson that look just alike! So many of their faces and mannerisms are the exact same! And when we told Carson last week that Daddy was going to be his soccer coach, he was over the moon excited! Yesterday on the way to practice Carson said, “I actually really know who my soccer coach is. It’s my Daddy!” He had the best time at practice yesterday, and we are looking for another fun soccer season!

FullSizeRender_1

Sweet Summer Snippets, Part 4

We’ve been settling slowly into our new school year routine, and we’ll be adding our evening activities over the next few weeks, but here’s one more peek into our summer…

When I look back on summer 2016, I am so very grateful. It was a summer of family, friends, flexibility, freedom, and preparing for new adventures in the future. Oh, summer 2016, you sure were sweet!

 

Grace and Giggles

IMG_0481

Tonight while Jeffrey was making us some yummy stir fry for dinner and I was emptying the dishwasher, the kids asked if they could dress up in some of our clothes. They were full of giggles as they came out and modeled their new fashions for us. They tried on shirts, dresses, pants and shoes too! And while I snapped a picture of them in one of their ensembles, the Lord so gently reminded me once again of just how big this calling to love, teach, encourage, and instruct my babies really is. They are watching our every move and following in our footsteps. And on the hard days and long days, like this particular day was, it’s our opportunity to give lots of grace to each other and to ourselves. Grace for new moments,  for fresh starts, and for lots of silly giggles while dressing up in Mommy and Daddy’s clothes. These are the days and moments that I don’t ever want to forget.

sweet summer snippets, part 3

we’ve finished up three days of school so far, but here’s a little peak into a little more of our summer fun! the days were full and fabulous… and filled with lots of fun with family and friends! most of our time outside was spent in the pool, since we had record hot summer days, but we also made the most of our time inside staying cool too! oh, summer, you were so very much fun!

Broadwell Academy is Back!

Broadwell Academy is officially back in session! Today was our first day of school for the 2016-2017 school year, and we had such a great day!

We started our day at Riverbanks Zoo and Waterfall Junction with some friends from co-op. The kids had a blast splashing, playing in the fairy garden, playing gigantic checkers, climbing the rock wall, riding the train and carousel, and of course, visiting the animals. They all took their cameras with them today, and they really liked taking pictures of the animals, especially the new sea lions and seal!

IMG_0400

After some quiet, rest time, we finished up our first school day with some spelling, handwriting, and reading. The kids were excited to get started back, especially with all of their new curriculum and notebooks! Carson is also going to be doing a Letter of the Week curriculum, and he was happy to be working right alongside the big kids today!

IMG_0409

We are excited and looking forward to a new year of growing, learning, traveling, and exploring! We are so grateful for all of the flexibility and great opportunities we get to experience because of homeschooling. The days are not always easy or glamorous, but they are always so very worth it!

Saturdays Well Spent

Last Saturday we spent the day out on Lake Murray with Jeffrey’s family. Aunt Jane, Uncle Terry, and their granddaughter MacKenzie (our crew’s second cousin) were visiting Grandpa and Ning for the weekend. The kids had the best time paddle boarding, tubing, swimming, riding on the boat, riding the jet skis, playing pool, eating hamburgers and hot dogs, and riding the golf cart! It was such a sweet day visiting with family that we don’t get to see near enough!

IMG_0217

And today we spent the day in one of our most favorite places, the Low Country, with our dear friends, the Hensons. It was an absolutely beautiful sunny day, and we all enjoyed our time on the beach and in the ocean. The kids dug in the sand and built a home for a crab, rode the boogie board and jumped waves, and Carson made us a lot of sand pies! After our time at the beach we went downtown and had a delicious dinner, strolled through the market, and picked up some treats for the way home!

IMG_0354

Summer Reading, Lego Club and Summer School

This summer we participated in our local library’s summer reading program again and also went to the weekly activities! The kids (and Mommy) worked hard getting all of our minutes read, and the kids were of course so excited each time they completed a level, and especially when they received their “gold” medals once they had completed the entire program! We read lots of great books this summer, and we also got to see some really great magic shows, puppet shows, plays, and even visits from the South Carolina Aquarium and Riverbanks Zoo! We also went to the library weekly for Lego Club. Sarah Ann and Carson participated a couple of times, but Reece absolutely loved it! He enjoyed all of the challenges and loved having his Lego creations on display at the library. When SA and Carson didn’t join in on the Lego fun, they had their own fun on the computers or coloring and doing puzzles. We are so very grateful for the Lexington County Library system!

Also this summer we did a bit of “summer school” a couple of days a week. Each day we journaled, read together and alone, reviewed our summer Bible verses, reviewed our states and capitals, and did math! Reece continued on his math curriculum and is doing awesome! Sarah Ann completed her Saxon 2 book just last week, praise the Lord, and Carson spent the summer counting and doing number recognition. Carson also learned his shapes and how to spell his name! It was nice to stay in a bit of our groove and keep up with our math and reading, and we usually did school in the afternoon when it was a million degrees outside anyway!