Sunday, August 23, 2009

Fallen Leaf Lake Camping

We had a great weekend camping with neighbor friends. We camped at Fallen Leaf Lake in South Lake Tahoe. The VandenAkker family had a rough start with some problems pulling the trailer, so we ended up driving up early Saturday and meeting everyone there. We had a great shaded campsite with lots of room for the kids to run and play. The kids had a blast together and played most the day Saturday on their own with little problems. It is always good to be in the outdoors and just let them explore. They can stay busy for hours. We hiked down to the lake and the kids played in the water. It was beautiful and the water was warm, so the kids ended up in the water in their clothes. We enjoyed the afternoon at the campsite letting the little ones nap and the older kids played and colored. In the late afternoon we drove to a nearby beach on Lake Tahoe. It was at Mike & Christina's timeshare, we were able to swim in the pool and spa and enjoy the private beach. We had a BBQ dinner on the beach and then used the timeshare showers to get the kids ready for bed. It was a great way to get the kids cleana nd not have to use the campground bathrooms. After getting back to camp we made s'mores and Mark played his guitar around the campfire. The kids loved singing and dancing and sitting in lawn chairs with oneanother. The adults hung out at the fire after all the kiddos were sleeping and were able to chata nd laugh with eachother. Nights in the tent are always a little long with Allie. She had a crying spell in the middle of the night so she ended up sleeping in daddy's sleeping bag with him. When we woke up this morning it was raining....we made breakfast in the misty rain, but then it started raining pretty hard, so we quickly packed up and ended the trip with lots of wet and muddy camping gear and wet kiddos. It actually ended up being a great day. We were home early and everyone hung out in the front yard cleaning our gear ans then it was time to head in for much needed naps. It was a wonderful trip with friends...despite the little sleep we got. We are so blessed with wonderful neigbors and friends, that we enjoy being with and our kids have such a good time together.

Allie was filthy after being at the campsite for 10 minutes....she loves chasing the older kids around and just wants to be one of them

The Kelly kids....I thought this was so cute of the three of them

Allie & Alyssa having a conversation
Allie helping daddy set up the tent

Best Buddies....just walking and talking

Luke's wooden surfboard
the guys wading out in the water

pretty girl on the beach

the Kindergartners...they made it through week 1
The 3 year old boys and Abigail

Andy & Mark being silly
again....being silly


The whole gang

Allie was loving the guitar music and insisted on sitting right next to Mark. She would clap and dance to every song.

Daddy & his boys ready for bed
Jacob dancing away

Allie joining in on the dancing

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Andrew's First Day of Kindergarten

Monday, August 17th was the day we entered the true world of school. No more preschool a couple days a week, with relaxing days in between. Andrew started kindergarten at Ruhkala Elementary. His teacher is Mrs Ayala. I kind of had the feelings I do when I have a new baby. I was nesting the whole week before, making sure the house was clean, drawers were organized, and we were ready to go. Sunday evening went well.....outfits layed out, some quiet time with Andrew, kids in bed early, breakfast prepared, and a late night prayer/hang out time with 6 other neighborhood moms who were also entering the world of kindergarten. Andrew was restless teh whole night and I didn't sleep great, but Monday morning came and we were ready. Andrew was excited, but a little nervous. The silly behavior came out, which is a clear sign to us that he is a little unsure. At 7:25 we met some neighbors outside, visited with Aunt TT, took some pictures, and then headed to school by scooter. It is about a half mile walk to school, so we are really trying hard to walk or ride bikes there most of the time. When we arrived at school we met the teacher out on the playground. We headed in the classroom and checked things out. I took Andrew on a scavenger hunt around his classroom and daddy played with Luke and tried to keep Allie out of cupboards and from eating crayons. Andrew is very excited to be in a class with his friends Spencer, Lauren, Amarena, Andrew D., and Andrew L. Knowing these kids made it pretty comforatble for him. Andrew was excited about the computers in his classroom the most. At 8:50 we said our goodbyes. The kids were ready for us to go. I kept it together pretty good, but as soon as Lauren's mom Chrsitina and I made eye contact, I lost it a little. I was used to leaving Andrew in his little Christian preschool class at our church, that seemed so safe and secure. His kindergarten classroom is very nice, but he's a big boy now and at the big kid school. He's not a baby, a toddler, or even a pre-schooler anymore, our little Andrew is a big school kid. As we walked outside the classroom Christina reminded me that we had worked so hard the last five years to prepare our kiddos for this day. After we got ourselves together we were able to meet the new principal, and then we walked home. When we got home I had that anxious feeling of "now what do I do" (I still have Luke & Allie at home with me, so I'm by no means bored), it felt so weird, and as the week goes on it feels strange to keep saying tonight is a school night. Andrew has been doing very well the first couple days. He doesn't say a lot about his day when I pick him up, but things slowly trickle out as the afternoon goes on. We are so proud of the boy Andrew is....he follows directions, is kind, and plays great with his friends. We know he will do well in Kindergarten and in the school years to come. It may take mommy a couple weeks to completely grasp the fact that my boy is in school, and just when I grasp it I'll be taking Luke off to pre-school!!

Our breakfast table all set for the morning
so cute sleeping in his bed with his backpack all ready to go...we picked out one of his favorite little stuffed animals (his bear) that I helped him tuck in his backpack. I told him that if he was feeling sad or missing home to take a peek at his little bear friend in his bag.
breakfast sandwiches

All ready to go
TT visits and gives good luck kisses

Best Buddies...Andrew & Spencer
on our way

Allie eating a crayon...Andrew picked out the dress he wanted her to wear

The 6 Magnolia & Escallonia kids

the moms after saying goodbye

the little brothers.....ready to ride their scooters all over campus