Sweetheart

October 30th, 2014

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We love our baby child so much!!!

Tuesday Night Lights!

October 29th, 2014

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Rose’s Halloween Costume Party Play Date ;)

October 28th, 2014

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Rose had a few little girlfriends over last week for a costume party!  Reese, Rose, Cerly, Katie, Lizzy and Lucy were so adorable all dressed up and ready to play!

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Our theme was pumpkins and kitties!  The night before, it was like Christmas Eve for Rose.  She was so very excited!  The big girls remember all their toddler play dates fondly and were really happy that Rose was getting a turn.  I love my girls!

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Noelle found the “Mummy pig” idea on YouTube for me, and the girls enjoyed them.  We are trying so hard to eat healthy around here, but it’s so hard.  I think we did a pretty good job today, and the girls did get to decorate cupcakes at the end for a little treat.

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Rara came to help with the party and babysit for Mike and me to go out with some friends the next night, and of course, stayed busy helping us the whole weekend.  I don’t know what I’d do without her!  Rose, Katie, and Lizzy were busy at work with their first of lots of crafts that kept them busy: Halloween window gel clings! 

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After we decorated goodie bags and other sticker crafts, the girls had the cutest, giggliest freeze dance session I’ve ever seen.  I don’t have any pictures of them dancing because I was too busy videoing that part.  It was adorable and something the moms will always remember for sure!

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And Rose’s favorite, cupcake decorating time!  Toddlers have to stay busy 100% of the time or you never know what you are gonna get.  We had so much fun, and it was just the sweetest afternoon.

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I asked Rose if her kitty was sad, and she said, “No, my kitty is mad!” as she was laughing like it was the funniest joke ever.  Lizzy had a blast showing off her crazy-eyed ghost too! 

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Rose and Cerly finishing up their cupcakes!

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Rose’s kitty claws!  This is just too funny to me.  She got out of bed the night before, came in our room, and said, “Mom, what are we going to do for my kitty claws?  I have to have claws because kitty cats have claws!”  I thought this one up on a whim, and she loved them!

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I was hesitant to plan a party because for some reason, we are all exhausted right now, like so exhausted.  But… then I thought, “Both of my big girls are in school, and it’s now or never!”  So, we went for it, and oh my goodness, we had the best warm fall afternoon ever with these girlies.  I’m always so overjoyed when I see kids playing together and having fun!  It should always be this simple, carefree and easy.  They are all such little loves!

Zombie Halloween Pep Rally

October 27th, 2014

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The Lions cheerleaders had so much fun performing their version of “Calling All the Monsters” at their Halloween pep rally!

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These girls trip me out!  Unfortunately, Noelle’s bloody knee wasn’t paint.  She fell on the play ground at school that day, but the worst part was some of the kids who saw her fall, laughed at her while she was trying to get up.  It embarrassed and hurt her and broke my heart when she tearfully told me about it after school.  Kid experiences make you stronger, but man, sure are hard to watch your baby go through.  Thankfully, she has awesome friends who really know how to cheer her up!

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Cute little zombie cheerleaders, Hannah, Brianna, and Noelle!

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Emily, Noelle, and Bri may have this down a little too good! 

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Little sisters, Anna Kate and Sydney, aren’t far behind them!

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What a blast!  These moments in life make the falls a little more bearable.  So thankful for the fun!

Aunt Polly’s 90th Birthday

October 26th, 2014

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We had the honor and pleasure of attending my Great Aunt Polly’s 90th birthday party on her exact birth day, October 11, earlier this month!  I wouldn’t have been anywhere else in the whole wide world that day, along with these beauties!

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This 90 year old red-head is super special and totally amazing!  I try to call her each week, and every time we get to talk, I realize how strong and resilient she is and what a legacy I have to live up to.  She truly peps me up and keeps me going!

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Noelle and Harper and Megan, Amber and Anna Kate, all cuddling and enjoying the day!

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Some of Polly’s very favorite people, friends Katherine and Sherly and grandson, Troy.

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Aunt Polly with three of her grandchildren, Troy, Amber and Stacey.  I’m proud of my family!

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Aunt Polly was talking to Noelle about how cute the little dancers were. 

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My cousin, Amber, my sissy, Nancy, and baby Saylor.  Aunt Polly asks me how “Michael J” is doing every single time we talk.  He’s totally flattered because she always brags on him and makes him feel special when they are together.  She truly knows he has a good heart and makes sure he knows she knows. 

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Aunt Polly enjoyed her cards and little presents so much!  The girls couldn’t wait to give her our goodies.

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Noelle made her a beaded lizard key chain that she’d been wanting, and we gave her some cozy cardigans for winter.

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I’ve heard so much about her little bag that she always has with her every where she goes.  It has a pen for writing down food requests, a comb for straightening her hair, and her cell phone.  She is awesome!

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Aunt Polly with the Banks family.

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I love this family so much! 

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I promise I didn’t plan it this way, but today, the day of this post, is October 26, 2014.  Aunt Polly’s oldest sister, my very special Granny (Rara’s mom), would have been 100 years old today.  I honestly miss her every single day, and the tears flow from time to time when I think about her and all the memories we share.  She would be so thrilled her little sister, Aunt Polly, got to know all of these precious great grand babies!  Aunt Polly and Granny were very best friends even though they were 10 years apart.  They were always together and so very funny together at that.  Their personalities were night and day, but that was the beauty of their friendship.  They are both such wonderful caring supportive women in my life, and I wouldn’t be who I am today without their love and care.  Happy 90th birthday, Aunt Polly, and 100th birthday, Granny… we love you both more than words!!!

Sand Coasters, Mexican Food, Cousins = Best Night Ever

October 25th, 2014

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We had a blast visiting the Banks family weekend before last.  Here’s my brother John and me, with our 5 girls combined!

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I can’t get enough of these sweet kisses from Harper Grayce! 

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Fun times!

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She is hilarious!

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Brother Man, Saylor, Fancy Nancy, and Auntie Momo!

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Sand coasters, and Noelle paving the way!

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The terrific 3 year olds!  Winking smile

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Cutie Kate is so stinkin’ cute!

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Saylor Rose is too adorable and growing way too fast! 

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This baby face is just so perfect!

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What a super fun, sweet, special, low-key, down-to-earth, good ole’ time!  Thanks for having us, BanksFam4!

Road Trip

October 24th, 2014

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Have you ever been to BUC-EE’S?  The girls thought it deserved a blog post.  It’s the nicest, cleanest, most interesting gas station/convenient store, and we had a blast checking it out!  We tried their banana pudding and fresh fruit and both were a hit!  It’s a destination of its own, so if you are ever near one, check it out! 

Rose and her Red Boots

October 23rd, 2014

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Seriously Random YOLO

October 22nd, 2014

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We got donuts one day (we maybe get donuts twice a year now), and this was on our bags: “It’s all good!”  If only donuts made me feel as good as they taste!  Cracked me up though… as if they knew you’d have buyer’s remorse, they had to add a little extra encouragement on the bag: “It’s all good!”  Made a Monday a whole lot more fun a few weeks ago!

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My baby is growing up!  Winking smile

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Rose drew her first monster with her shoes on backwards.  Maybe that gave her her inspiration!

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Anna Kate’s awesome class this year!

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Susie always sends me the sweetest pictures of Anna Kate and Malia at lunch!

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My working girl!

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Rose and I have enjoyed some one-on-one time this year.  We’ve never had it before!  She loves story time, and I enjoy watching her listen and learn!

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If we have an errand near the mall, Rose knows she’s going to get to ride her favorite: the “carou-shelf!”  The carousel and my little pony are two of her favorite things right now!

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What a goof!  She was totally joking with me and not sad at all.  She is seriously such a ham/mess/you name it!

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Noelle’s cheerleading squad was lucky enough to get some awesome coaches for the second half of our season.  We are so thankful to them for their service to our girls! 

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This was one of my favorite lunches this fall.  The family met up at Gloria’s, and this young lady was having a birthday.  Noelle begged to give her a dollar for the stack she was wearing on her shirt, and we snapped a picture.  Love when out and about, we can all be a part of each others’ stories and have fun together!  Life is too short.  Try not to stay to yourself in your little bubble in your little family in your little world.  We’re all in this together, and you never know what a quick smile or high five will do to lift someone up!

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Cutie Kate with our family cheerleader, Mrs. Eubanks!  Love you, girlfriend and the way you love our girls!

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www.greatkidssnacks.com We subscribed to Great Kids Snacks last month to try it out because I was struggling to find healthy snacks for our girls for after school snacks.  We loved trying things we would’ve never tried before and can’t wait for our next box.  It is very reasonably priced and healthy.  The things the girls don’t like, I will gladly eat.  I think we hit on something great!

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So be it!  Let’s go face the world and be brave, people!

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Fall teacher gifts just for a little pick-me-up fun!  Occasionally, I will take a few #selfies if I feel like it.  Today, I was like, “BOOO!”

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Rose loves when we have a make-up errand!  All the girls up there love to help her experiment… it’s super cute!

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These two pics are semi-unrelated, but Mike and Jon definitely do their own thing!  Jon has started a tradition of decorating, for lack of a better word, Mike at the office each year for his birthday… that’s what best friends are for, right!?!

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Anna Kate and Malia and Rose with Braxton at school.  And Rose’s shoes are backwards again.  Winking smile

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Anna Kate had a blast at Katy Perry, and this is a throwback picture of Noelle at her first concert, Taylor Swift.

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Mike had an awesome birthday this year and got to hang out with his best friends too! 

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Blackfish is a documentary with mixed reviews.  If I’m following my heart and my gut feeling, I agree SeaWorld is not a good place for Orcas.  I’m sad we ever went there as a family.  Granted, it’s amazing to see killer whales up close and in person, but at what expense?  Watch the documentary and come to your own conclusion.  Some parts may be exaggerated but at least it’s another perspective to consider.  And you can’t deny the science behind a lot of it. 

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Noelle made up this awesome hairstyle!  We named it the dutch braided high cheer pony.  Noelle loves to cook!  She is great in the kitchen, and it’s a fun activity she and Mike do together (I assist too but it’s just not my thing, and I’ve finally gotten to a place where I’m okay with that.  Traditional gender roles make no sense for our family.  We delegate our tasks based on our skills and abilities, not our gender, which makes much more sense to us.)

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I still can’t believe we have two girls in elementary school this year!  Noelle and Anna Kate had a blast at the Fun Run this year!  Here is Anna Kate with her sweet friend, Cori, and Noelle running her little heart out!

Tribute to Oscar de la Renta

October 21st, 2014

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In loving memory of Oscar de la Renta (July 22, 1932-October 20, 2014) by Noelle Pond, Age 8.

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