Tuesday, September 26, 2017

summer fun

As soon as the girls were out of school for the summer we were off to the races! Just because it's summer time doesn't mean things slow down around here! Mid-June means it's recital time and one of the busiest weekends of the year in our house. With two girls that dance and a Mom who teaches it's non-stop craziness for two days.

On the first night of recital only Olivia had dances, but Cece came to support her sister. She had a total of 8 dances this year, which is more than ever before. I am so impressed with her ability to remember so many different routines and perform them so well. Not to mention how cute her costumes were this year!

The second night was twice as fun as both girls were dancing. Olivia had the rest of her dances as well as some that she performed on both nights. My favorite part of watching Olivia dance is seeing how much fun she has when she is on stage. She loves is and it shows!

This was the first year that Cecilia performed two dances at recital. She added ballet in addition to tap, which she has been taking for 4 years. She shares her sister's love of the stage and was super excited to get out there and show off her moves!

The theme for her tap dance this year was, "When I Grow Up". They each got to pick what they wanted to be when they grow up and Cecilia choose a veterinarian. It was an adorable little dance and Cece remembered all of her steps!

Her ballet dance was just as cute. They danced to a song from the Tinkerbell movie, dressed as fairies. I think this was her favorite dance, and she performed it with grace. I have seen a big change in Cecilia's stage presence and ability this past year. She has really started to come out of her shell with her dancing.

It was a crazy, but fun two days of recital. The girls are blessed to be learning dance from some pretty amazing teachers, and to be surrounded by some great role models in the older dancers. They look up to these girls and use them as inspiration. I am proud of the little dancers my girls have become. They make me so proud!

The day after recital was Father's Day. We didn't have a great deal planned other than relaxing by the pool while the girls spent time with their Daddy! Daddy deserved some relaxation as well after spending the past two days sitting through hours of dancing!

With dance done for the summer there was finally time to enjoy some of the other fun summer activities the girls look forward to. Each year Olivia attends the Beasley soccer camp with her buddy Aleah. It is a week full of soccer training and fun, and this year was no exception. Well the only exception was that she and Aleah won a few of the big giveaways of the week. Olivia walked away with a soccer ball signed by Beasley himself! She was pretty excited! The week always wraps up with the big water balloon fight, which is the best part!

Summertime means Cecilia's favorite day is approaching...her birthday! Hard to believe that my baby was turning six, but if you know my girl you know she was looking forward to this day for weeks! Things kicked off at her babysitters with a day full of her favorite things. She requested donuts for breakfast so Holly made them from scratch! Next she opened presents from her little buddies and finished things off with cupcakes and a birthday wish!

The celebration continued at home with a few presents before getting fancied up for her birthday dinner! Every year on Olivia's birthday her grandmother takes us all out for dinner at her favorite Japanese restaurant. Cecilia has been asking non-stop for the past year when she can start that tradition, and this was the year!

The girls love Takaoka so much, not just for the food, but for the experience. Problem is that Cecilia does not have the most developed pallet, so the thing she looks forward to eating the most is white rice. She obviously likes this restaurant primarily for the show, not so much for the amazing food.

She wasted no time tearing into her presents after dinner. She was anticipating her big gift from her grandmother...a ukulele! After dinner we headed back to Nana's house for a few final presents and cake of course! Olivia surprised her sister with a rice crispy cake that she made almost entirely on her own. We all had a great time celebrating our girl's birthday and the smile on her face told me that she had a pretty great day too!

So the following weekend we had Cecilia's first official birthday party. We made plans to have it at a local park with a wonderful playground and splash pad. The plan was to have pizza, presents, cake and let the kids run around the park. Well things don't always go as planned. Cecilia woke up with a slight fever. Even though she wasn't feeling very well she still wanted to have her party!

Come party time she wasn't feeling well at all, but was happy to see her friends. She managed to perk up a bit to open some gifts, but immediately after wards got sick. She blew out the candle on her cake, but did not feel up to having a piece. From that point on she was a spectator at her own party. She sat and watched as her friends ran around and played. She simply did not feel well enough to partake in the fun.

I did manage to grab a few pictures of her with her friends early on before she really started feeling terrible. Cecilia's wonderful babysitter did her cake and came to celebrate with us. Holly's lap was where Cecilia wanted to be for the remainder of her party. It was a huge bummer that my sweet girl was unable to enjoy her 6th birthday party, but we will give it another shot next year. The good news is that she woke up the next morning feeling 100%! Aside from the 24 hour illness Cecilia had a fabulous 6th birthday and is already anticipating turning 7!

The following weekend we celebrated the 4th of July! Things are pretty tame around our house on this holiday. The girls and I are not big fans of loud fireworks so we keep things simple with sparklers and other things that do not make any noise. We spent the day at the pool and had a quiet celebration at home before going inside and avoiding the loud booms for the rest of the night!

In mid-July Olivia was off to soccer camp at Notre Dame! She was looking forward to going to this camp with all of her soccer friends for months! She was excited to learn some great soccer skills, but more than that she was excited to sleep in the dorms like a real college student!

She enjoyed her week at camp exploring the campus, hanging out with her friends and even winning the little tournament they held at the end. She won a Notre Dame scarf and t-shirt which made the whole week worth it for her! The first thing she said to me when she came home was, "I can't wait to go back next year!" It was a great camp and a great experience for Olivia!

When we weren't busy with birthdays, soccer and other summer activities you could find us at the pool! Lounging by the pool trumped anything else we really should be doing. The girls have some great friends there and they swim for hours! Cecilia and her little friend Avery found themselves a life guard they were smitten with too, and they followed him around most of the summer! Our days at the pool are some of our best each summer. Thank goodness the summer is only half over!