Monday, November 30, 2009

Thanksgiving at the Beach

Disclaimer: There are a ton of pictures on this post. Chuck took so many and I had too many favorites. Enjoy.

We had a wonderful relaxing Thanksgiving at Holden Beach in NC with my dad and his family. Thanksgiving day was beautiful outside and the girls enjoyed playing in the ocean and the sand. I love going to the beach during the off season, you feel like you have the whole beach to yourselves.

Me and my Daddy.

I love each of these pictures of the girls.

The beach is a great place to see nature in progress. If you notice the walkway from a beach house ends down in the sand dune that has developed. Also, the "No Anchoring" buoy in the middle of the sand dune.

Charly's first dip in the ocean. She did NOT like it at all.

Friday was really windy, a great day for flying kites at the beach.

We then took a walk down a pier. Notice my hair. It was really windy.

There were quite a few people fishing off the pier. One man caught a tiny shark. Layni was first in line to pet the shark. Leland followed suit, but Lucy never would touch it.

That evening, we watched the sunset on the beach.

Leland and Layni had so much fun together.

Being at the beach with family was a perfect way to spend Thanksgiving.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Fun with Cousins

My sister Christine came to visit for a few days with her 4 kids. We had so much fun with them. On Monday night, we went to Lunar Putt-Putt in the mall. Leland chose that as a reward for an obedience chart she has (we fill a cup with coins to earn a reward of her choice. She gets a certain # of coins for each good choice she makes). The kids had a lot of fun, but it was a bit pricey. Good thing Afton and Leah made the prize winning putt and won us 2 free rounds so we could go back.

Leland and Nick watching videos of them dancing together a few years ago.

We took them to Maymont Nature Center and Children's Farm. I love this picture of all the fish's eyes lit up.

This goat tried to eat Leah's skirt!

I love this little girl! What a doll!

The kids got a long great. It is always so much fun to watch cousins play together. Chuck even took care of all 7 kids so that my sister and I could go see "New Moon" together. Thanks from coming to visit.

Monday, November 23, 2009

Building Snowmen

To catch up on all the fun we have had over the last 2 weeks, there will be lots of pictures and maybe a few captions. Our camera started over exposing every picture we took, so we had to send it out for service. Luckily, my sister let me borrow her camera. Good thing - we (mostly Chuck) took 830 pictures over the last 2 weeks! If we didn't have a camera, we would have been so sad.

When my mom came up to pick up Sarah and Emily, we took them to Lowe's Build and Grow to "build snowmen". Emily had a great time along with our girls. Sarah wasn't that fond of all the banging when she wanted to nap in the stroller.

Sunday, November 22, 2009

My week with 5

This is for my sister Suzanne. I watched her two daughters aged 3 yrs and 1 yrs old last week while her and her husband went on a cruise. So I had 5 little girls aged 4, 3, 2, 1, and 4 months for 5 days, 4 nights.

We had so much fun with Emily and Sarah. Leland had been counting down the days. Her and Lucy were so excited the time finally came for their cousins to play at our house without their mom and dad. Sorry Suz, Emily only looked for you once and it was only a fleeting moment. Sarah latched right on to me as her caretaker and became weary of anyone else, ie. Chuck or Aunt Zebra.

We taught Emily how to set her own place at the table with her plate and silverware. She also learned it was her job to clean up her plate after a meal. She did great with both. Both girls slept all night, every night and never woke up in the middle of the night.

Emily was very possessive of "her" baby. Whenever Leland would play with Sarah, Emily would get territorial and try to wiggle herself between Leland and Sarah. I told Emily it was okay for Leland to play with Sarah and they could both play with her. She responded, "This (Sarah) is my baby. Charly is her baby. She go play with Charly."

I had forgotten what a fun age that 1 years old is. Sarah was so cuddly and loved to be tickled and play peek-a-boo. Those big brown eyes just melt my heart. She sure loves that blankie. We used the blankie to help her warm up to Chuck and Zebra. Zebra would hold on to the blanket and she would have to go to her in order to have the blanket. It worked great.

Aunt Zebra came to help on Thursday and Friday. We had fun playing with bubbles and jumping in leaves. Emily is just so dainty and feminine. The way she carries herself, eats, and plays. She just takes her time with everything. My girls are fast - the wolf down food and run basically everywhere. Sweet little Emily takes her time, a true Southern girl. She gets in her own little world at times, singing and talking. It's pretty hilarious to watch.

I took the 3 older girls to the play area at the mall one afternoon while Zebra stayed with the 2 little ones. {warning this is gross - read at your own risk} I tell you this because I could only laugh at the craziness that I was consumed with. We were playing for about 15 mins and Leland says she needs to go potty. We get all the shoes back on and walk to the potty, which is not close at all. Come back and played for about another 15 mins when Leland comes to me with wide eyes saying, all in one breath, "Mom, I need to go poop. I need to go poop, right now! I need to sit on a potty right now or I'm going to poop my pants...oops...I pooped my pants." I could see the embarrassment and horror in her eyes. It was hard to get mad at her. I was extremely lucky that it was all "contained." Needless to say we left. Cleaned up in the bathroom and went home. All I could do was laugh. My one outing and someone ended up with poop in their pants.

Another funny story, but again, be warned, it's gross. I was reading the girls stories all cuddled on the couch. Emily was, well, picking her nose. I could tell she was really digging for something. I asked her if she needed a tissue and she said, "No." A few seconds later, I see her pull out a big booger and is headed for her mouth. I say, "Wait, let me get you a tissue." Emily replies, "No, I just put it back." Stuffs her booger covered finger back in her nose and it comes out clean. Nice work.

Other fun that we had together:
  • Bubbles

  • jumping in leaves
  • Fun Fruit night - The girls discovered pomegranate and kiwi

Other fun for another post:
  • Lowe's Build and Grow
  • dancing with Nana
I had so much fun with those 5 little girls. Now having just my 3 will seem so easy. I was exhausted by the end of every day. I was surprised by how worn out I was and we didn't even go anywhere most days. I was napping within minutes of mom leaving with them on Saturday. I had to tear Lucy away from Nana's car while she was crying, "No go to Nana's house!"

I am so grateful for Chuck who helped out so much and loves those little girls so much. I appreciate my friend Sarah who picked up Leland from preschool for me and cleaned my whole kitchen that first full day I had them. I am so glad that my aunt came to help on Thursday and Friday. She made it so much fun for all of them.

Thank you Suz for trusting me to take care of your children. I loved having them in my home and getting to know their personalities more. Chuck and I are planning our next getaway and will be cashing in our reciprocation soon. I hope you had a blast on your cruise.