"When you called me to be a Mama, You didn't ask for perfection. But that with every breath, I'd point them to You."

Friday, September 4, 2015

happy things // vacation week

Some moments from our last week of summer - a week off and away from emails and phone calls, no set alarm clocks, and absolutely beautiful Fall-like temperatures. The down time was so needed after a stressful July and August. We kept busy but also slowed down. The boys were incredibly well-behaved. And we never got out of bed before 7:30... sometimes even 8:30. We spent a morning in the bookstore, a very rainy Friday with a pile of rented movies and video games after winning a random prize from Family Video and marked more items off our Summer Bucket List. And the kids never once complained of being bored.

Happy things and moments from our week...

//Uncle James's first Friday night UNI soccer game of the season. Jaden ate popcorn and played football with Papa Bob up on the hill. I pushed Ivy around the soccer field in her stroller so that Cassi could focus on the game. The Panthers won in overtime. And Brandon chased the sunset.

//arts and crafts, workbooks, caterpillars, and long sleeves outside. Brandon spent hours painting and drawing, Jaden spent hours with his basketball hoop, and we had the windows open all week long.

//Jaden's first football practices of the season and his last baseball game of the year. Football practice is behind Southdale school, and Brandon spends the entire hour and 20 minutes playing with the other younger siblings on the playground.

//the Minions on the big screen. It was an entirely free movie experience as I had found a gift card still left over from Christmas and then we received free popcorns and pops from the theater employee, as we were the only ones in the place on a Tuesday afternoon.

//the perks of having their own rooms. Brandon discovered that he could play in his room by himself, building houses with Lego's and Lincoln Logs on his hardwood floors without any interruption from Jaden, and Jaden discovered he now has a quieter place to read his books and look at his magazines.

//a trip to Kid's Kingdom on a cool Thursday morning. I grabbed a Starbucks and a book for me and went back and forth between playing with the kids and reading from a picnic table in the crisp air. The kids spent their time making up obstacle courses and playing hide-and-seek. We had nowhere else to be, and it felt great.

Last year's picture from the same spot during this same week...

...and this year's.

//backpack night. We dropped off school supplies, checked out lockers and cubbies, showed Brandon where the lunch room is and got introduced to teachers.

//a Sunday afternoon trip up the river, once again going places we hadn't gone before. We brought snacks and drinks on board, fed Cheez-Its to the ducks floating by our boat and motored along until we almost ran out of gas! It's always an adventure.

//a day to myself. I took my last day of vacation on the boys' first day of school, and it was the best day. I got our home decorated in its Fall best, shopped Bath & Body Works for pumpkin candles, wallflowers and soaps, placed my Fall and Winter Scentsy order, made chocolate chip pumpkin bread for an after-school snack and read my book all afternoon while cinnamon, spice and pumpkin smells filled our home. I picked my very happy boys up from school and heard stories of their first day before heading off to football practice that night. If only we moms could have more days like that!

//a day at the waterpark. More to come on that...
It was a good and memorable week with my people. Another summer in the books and a Fall that awaits...