Saturday, September 6, 2014

School Picture Day

School picture day was last week.  I took a few pictures of my kids before they went off to school.  I think you can tell by the amount of pictures below who was more happy to model for me, and who was just humoring their mother.

That's all!

Thursday, September 4, 2014

Hunter's First Day of School

Oh man, Hunter's first day of school was a hard one for me.  We did all our usual first-day traditions.  I gave him his special book with an inscription from me.  It was the same book I gave Tralee on her very first day of school; The Kissing Hand.  Hunter and I read it together before he left for school.  I also read the inscription to him.  I told him how proud I was of him, how big he's gotten, and all the hopes I have for his first year of school.  Then we kissed each other's hands, and readied ourselves for this next big adventure.

While I was helping Hunter get ready for school, I started picturing him through the years; my baby in all the stages of his life up to this point.  I did my best to hold it together for my little guy.  After feeding Hunter lunch, we walked outside and took some pictures.  

His idea was to pretend to ring the doorbell.  Whatever.  We just rolled with it.

I had to get the huge backpack shot.

After pictures at our house, we drove to Hunter's new school, and took a few more.  I could tell by Hunter's quiet demeanor that he was a little nervous, although he told me he was mostly excited.  When we were close to the school I heard a little voice from the backseat whisper, "I have bubbles in my tummy."  I swallowed hard and answered back, "Me too Bud!"

Once in the classroom Hunter found his name, hung up his backpack, found a seat, and got to work.  He sat next to another little boy, who has since become one of his good friends at school.  I took a few pictures of my little guy in the classroom, and tried my best to hold back the flood gates.  I think I went up to Hunter three or four times to pat his back, tell him goodbye, and whisper encouragements into his ear.  I probably would have stayed all day, but knew I had to leave sooner or later, so I gave Hunter one last goodbye, and forced myself out of the classroom.

I took this one last picture of Hunter hard at work through the doorway, and then finally turned and walked away.  It was then that the tears started rolling.  Another mom walking in the school with her kindergardener took one look at me and said, "Oh man!  Don't get me started, I'm going to be a hot mess!"  I'm pretty sure I looked like a hot mess on the drive home.  I called Jim and said something like, "I just dropped Hunter off!"  But Jim couldn't understand me.  He was all, "WHAT?!?!"  So I repeated myself and he said, "Ohhhh!  Hunter's first day."  I tried my best to describe the experience to Jim who was away on a business trip.  I told him, "My baby isn't a baby anymore!"  Jim was sweet, kind, and understanding, but I'm pretty sure he thought I was a little crazy also.  I just can't believe we're here already.  My baby is growing up, and that stings a bit.

 I was beyond excited to pick up the kids at the end of the school day, and find out how everything went.  Hunter said he loved his teacher, class, and school.  He drew this adorable picture on his first day, and it is now proudly hanging on the fridge.  I can't wait to see what else awaits us this year as both of my kids navigate their way through a new school year at a new school, and I figure out what to do with myself now that I have a few hours every weekday to myself.

I'm proud to say, I haven't cried since that day.  It's awesome that both of my kids love their new school.  It makes sending them off everyday pretty easy, but my favorite part of the day is when I get them back home.

Tralee's First Day of School

Tralee was mostly excited and a little nervous on her first day of school.  She told me, "I have one butterfly in my tummy."  One is not too bad, especially when you're the new girl.  Here are some pictures of her first day:

When I picked her up at the end of the day and asked her how it went her reply was, "I LOVED IT!!"  I'm so glad she did.  In fact, almost every day is filled with happy stories, excitement, and love for her new school.  Her old school was great, but she was NEVER excited to go.  In fact, she would ask me, "Can I be sick so I don't have to go today."  Nothing was wrong, she had lots of friends, loved her teacher, but the day was just too long for her.  She spent most of the day in one chair, with the exception of the one hour every day she got to go to either music, computers, library, or gym class and then the other breaks for recess and/or lunch.  At her new school, Tralee goes to a new classroom for every topic which breaks up the day for her and keeps her mind active.  She also has either art, music, dance, and/or gym everyday.  I was surprised that the only recess Tralee has is at lunch, but she's never once complained about it because she's so busy and active during the school day.  We're really loving her new school.

Here's a picture of her on day two:

She's happy and ready to go. . . also KNEE SOCKS!  I love them!

Hunter's first day of school post coming soon.

iPhone Photo Plop - Start of August

Here are some random photos from my iphone from the beginning of August; just after our move.

Tralee, Lexi, Brynli, and Hunter at Back-to-School night

Brynli and Hunter at Back-to-School night

One night at Adrienne's house we saw a baby lizard inside her house.  We caught it, and the kids had fun playing with it the rest of the night.

Tralee caught a little cold a few days after we moved here.  She spent the day napping while I unpacked.

Is there anything better than a kid in goggles?  I think not.

Tralee dared Hunter to wear her skirt out in public.  He gladly accepted the challenge.  We got some looks.  We giggled.

Hunter and I shopping together before school began for him.

I love that Hunter HAD to wear his pirate gear before watching a pirate movie.  Silly kid!

That's all for now.

The Move

Tralee riding in the moving truck with Jim

When Jim and I were married for about a year, we took our first real vacation together; a vacation that wasn't a honeymoon, and a vacation that wasn't to visit family.  We were poor college students, so our options had to fit within our dollar-menu budget.  We decided to take a road trip to St. George, Las Vegas, and San Diego.  We ended up staying with family in St. George and Las Vegas, but splurged and used Jim's birthday money for a hotel in San Diego.  This trip was fantastic.  We spent our time in St. George exploring Snow Canyon and making a video of ourselves acting like Steve and Terri Irwin hunting for the St. Georgian Sand Moccasin (The Crocodile Hunter was VERY big at this time and we were hard-core fans).  In Vegas we walked the strip and watched the water show.  Our two days in San Diego were spent at the beach, and my birthday present to Jim as a whale watching tour I found a good deal on.  On the drive back home we stopped in St. George again.  While there Jim and I decided it would be an ideal place to live someday.  From that time on we decided to make living in or near St. George our goal.

For various reasons, once we finished school, instead of looking for employment opportunities in St. George we found ourselves in Boise, Idaho.  I'm glad we did.  I accepted my first post-college career at the Boise Art Museum, Jim started his own business, we welcomed our two munchkins into the world, and through the years we made some life-long friends in The City of Trees.  Boise was good to us for a long long time.

Then came January 2014 and a new opportunity for Jim.  He accepted a new position with Traeger Grills.  This path would allow more time for Jim to be with us at home, but also gave us the opportunity to live wherever we wanted.  As soon as Jim accepted the offer we looked at each other and pretty much at the same moment said, "We can move to St. George!"  That got the ball rolling.

We decided to let the kids finish up their school year, play for one more summer in Boise, and then make the move in August.  We spent our last days in Boise saying goodbye to friends, family, and packing up our lives.  There were many tearful goodbyes in August 2014.  When I pulled out of our driveway, and followed the moving truck I broke down and cried for a solid 30 minutes.  Eight years is a long time, and we grew some serious roots in B-town.  It was painful to sever them.  However, I knew what awaited us in St. George and all the reasons we wanted to live there, so my sadness soon turned to anticipation.

Our last night with our Jacobs cousins in Boise (a difficult tearful goodbye was said this night).

More saying goodbye to cousins at our old place in Boise

This was right after we left Boise.  I was crying pretty hard, but also knew this was a significant moment in our family's lives.

Sometimes Tralee wanted to ride with me and Corky instead of the moving van.

At one point on the drive, we saw a double rainbow.  We took it as a good omen.

We've arrived in St. George, moved into our new place, and have settled for about a month.  The house we're in is just temporary until we can find something long-term.  I'm not sure how much I want to decorate since we might only be here for part of the year.  It's a nice house though, so I'm sure I can be happy here for a little while.  

Our new house, don't mind all the moving boxes

Kitchen/dining room.  This is on moving day, so please excuse the boxes/mess.

Our backyard.  We have lots of lizards and humming birds visiting us back here.

The kids LOVE having a jetted tub

Hunter modeling in front of some red rock mountains

Another tub picture

The kids started a new school, and LOVE it!  It's a charter school based on the arts and technology.  They take dance, art, music, piano, strings, among all the regular topics.  When they get to the older grades, they'll also learn computer skills in a state-of-the-art Apple computer lab.  One parent told me his kids began their own graphic design business in eighth grade, after learning the skills needed at school.  Pretty cool stuff!  Also, instead of sitting in one desk all day, the kids rotate through classes in different rooms, which helps split up their day.  Tralee is SO excited to go to school every day, which is quite different to how she felt about her other school.  She also likes having her cousin Brody in all of her classes, and loves that every Friday is a half-day.

Since moving, we've spent a lot of quality time with our family here.  The kids play with their cousins a lot, we've had family dinners, outings, and get-togethers where fun memories have been made.  Also, we hardly ever had any visitors in Boise.  Since moving, we've already had family come visit, and plans for more to come over the next few months.  I LOVE living in a place where people come to visit.

Hanging out with cousins for family night

Adrienne, Tandra, and myself doing our best duck-lips

So, that pretty much sums up our move to St. George.  So far, we're loving it.  We love the red rocks, we love having family close by, we love all the outdoor things we have to do here, we love that we have so much more to explore and discover in our new city.  Jim and I feel like we're on a permanent vacation.  We keep wondering when it will be time to go home and get back to reality.  We feel blessed that this is our new norm.