Sunday, June 21, 2015

spring in full swing

Our Spring was full of fun activities! A big part of April was consumed by dance competitions. We had two competitions, two weekends in a row. The first weekend we were lucky enough to get to stay in town. This not only cuts down on the cost of it all but also keeps us from having to be away from home for two consecutive weekends. Not only did I have kids competing that weekend, but Olivia had two dances as well...tap and jazz.

The girls did a great job! This is only Olivia's second time competing so it is all still very new to her. I was incredibly impressed with how they performed. They placed well and their jazz group even received the "neat & clean" award. This award probably meant more than anything else they received that weekend. Olivia and her little friend accepted the award on stage and they were beyond excited!

The following weekend we traveled to Detroit for another competition. Olivia only had one dance to compete that weekend but she had to tag along with me while my kids competed too. It was a full on girls weekend. She stayed with me and two other dance teachers in the hotel and ran around with her friends all weekend. The night we arrived she had to get her beauty rest to prepare for her performance the next morning.

We were up and at it early for the girls to compete their tap routine. They did a nice job and of course had a good time. As soon as awards were done Olivia wanted to rush back to the hotel to swim with her friend Maggie. It was another long week full of dance but Olivia was a trooper and stuck it out.

While I was in Detroit with Olivia, Todd and Cece were off doing their own thing. They took a church trip to a water park in Ohio for the weekend. After a rough start, with their bus showing up hours late, they finally arrived in the condo they would be staying in for the weekend.

Cece had a blast with their day of water slides and wave pool fun. She ran around with other kids and enjoyed her one on one time with her daddy. I was glad they were able to do something fun while Olivia and I were out of town.

Each year we all anticipate the opening of the Fort Wayne Children's Zoo. For many years now my Aunt Sue has given us a zoo pass for Christmas. We love it so much and get so much use out of it each year. Our first visit was great, as there were a few new animals to see.

A trip to the zoo is never complete without a ride on the carousel. The girls love picking out which animal they are going to ride on. We like to take our time when we are there, and the nice thing about the zoo pass is that we do not feel like we have to do the whole zoo on each visit. We see new and exciting things each time we go.

The month of May brought lots of exciting things. One of the highlights was the Mother's Day luncheon at Cece's school. The Primary teachers put on a lovely lunch for the kids and their moms. Cece was beyond excited to have me there.

She was so sweet that day and so happy to be at her school with her friends enjoying this special occasion. She was so excited that it was hard for her to focus on eating. All she wanted to do was hug me...sweet girl!

That weekend we officially celebrated Mother's Day. I didn't need any fancy gifts to help celebrate this day, just my girls. Every Mother's Day I stop and think about just how lucky I am to have these two amazing girls in my life. They make me proud each and every day, and as a Mom I could not ask for anything more.

A few days later I celebrated my birthday. How did I celebrate, you ask? Well I spent the day in my garage selling my old stuff to other people. Yep, it was time for my annual garage sale and the first day of it fell on my birthday. It may not have been a very glamorous day, but we wrapped it up with dinner, cake and presents. That's enough for me!

In May we were in the middle of Olivia's Spring soccer season. Lots of practices and games on the weekends. One of the weekends the girls participated in the "Shoot for a Cure" tournament for breast cancer. The gorgeous Spring weather made for perfect soccer playing conditions. For the first time I took my good camera and zoom lens to catch some action shots of Olivia and her team.

They did not win or make it very far, but they played well and had fun. It's a fun tournament for a great cause!

For me I just enjoy watching as these girls improve with each game they play together. The Spring soccer season was a good one for Olivia. She got the opportunity to "play up" a few times. This means she was asked to fill in on the team that is the next age group up. The girls are a little older and also a little stronger. It was a great opportunity for her to grow as a player. Sure made me proud as her Mom too!

After one of our busy soccer weekends Olivia got to hang out with her BFF Aleah and have a sleepover. These girls have the best time together, regardless of what they are doing. This particular sleepover was, according to Olivia, "the best ever!!!".

Of course it's the best ever when you kick off the night with a trip to the mall. A ride on the carousel, shopping and cruising on a giant panda down the halls of the mall...sounds like a blast to me! Whenever Olivia stays with Aleah her Mom, Lesley sends me tons of text updates of the fun things they do. On this particular night I was actually a little jealous of the fun I was missing.

The best update of the night was when she shared a picture of the girls wearing their new shirts. Lesley was so kind to buy these for the girls and they were thrilled! Olivia and Aleah will be going to sleepover camp together soon and their shirts will be going with them. So cute!

The fun continued once they got back to Aleah's house. They live in the country and one of their neighbor's has a horse. They paid the horse a visit and brought him a little treat...some carrots! Wrapping the night up with a bonfire and smores...I don't think it was possible to squeeze any more fun into one night. These two have the best time together and will be making many more memories together as the summer continues.

Later this month Cecilia will turn 4. Not sure how that happened so quickly, but it's has and she's excited. Because her birthday falls in the summer she never gets the chance to celebrate it with her friends at school. Each kid in the class gets to have an "all about me" week. They usually have it fall around their birthday. We just picked a week close to the end of the school year to celebrate Cece and her upcoming birthday. The week consists of things that celebrate you. We made an "all about me" poster for Cece, highlighting many of the important people in her life. She brought in a few of her favorite books and she brought in a "birthday" snack to share with the class.

Part of "all about me" week is the walk around the sun. This is a special ceremony that recognizes their birthday. They light a candle and walk around the months of the year that are laid out in a circle. They walk around the circle one time for each year of their life and then everyone sings "Happy Birthday". She could hardly contain her excitement as she waited to make her laps around the circle. I think it's pretty obvious she does not mind having all of the attention on her. It was fun to share this special occasion with her and I am looking forward to celebrating her actual birthday even more at the end of the month.

As the school year started to come to an end the girls were busy wrapping up their work for the year and having fun with friends. It is hard to believe that another school year has passed by. Olivia will be entering 3rd grade next year and in one more year Cece will be entering Kindergarten. Each year seems to fly by faster than the last.

We have a super fun summer planned for the recitals, camps, get togethers with friends, and of course lounging by the pool! Summertime is the best time!