Monday, August 15, 2016

Tessa Kate's 1st Day of Preschool!

Today was Tessa Kate's very first day of school!

She has been SO excited to go to school, just like Bubba. She could hardly wait to use her Ariel/Flounder "pack pack" and make new friends.

Last night was orientation at Anchored Adventures, her sweet little preschool at the First Baptist Church. I was surprised by how clingy she was. She enjoyed meeting her teacher, Ms. Magen, but wouldn't let me take a picture of them together. Ms. Magen had snacks (apples and cookies, which Tess is still talking about for some reason) and a cute frog stuffed animal as a surprise for her class of all girls. :-)

We obviously couldn't leave the house this morning without a photo shoot. As excited as she was, I think she was also a little tired...I had to wake her up so we could make it there on time.

We actually got to the church a little early, so we took some more pictures. They had a cute little First Day of Preschool area all set up for us, which you know I loved!

Tessa Kate was all about starting school, so I was a little taken aback when she started crying as I put her down. And pried her off of me. Poor thing. But by the time I got to the end of the hallway, she had calmed down. And while I grocery shopped all by myself (woot woot!), Ms. Magen sent this picture of the girls playing together:

After I was done skipping through the aisles at Publix, I did some chores at home. It's amazing how much I can get done without my little shadow hanging around. Still, the time flew by and before I knew it, it was time to pick my preschooler up. She ran right to me and answered all of my questions about her day on the way home. She informed me that they sang and danced, played a lot, ate popcorn for snack, did circle time...she even mentioned that she pooped while she was there. So, I guess she's comfortable in her classroom! She needed to get right in her nap once we got home before picking Cooper up, but I did let her have a cookie to celebrate her first day of school.

And to commemorate this exciting new chapter in our baby girl's life, we received her first piece of artwork. Priceless.

We are so proud of our big girl and can't wait to see what this year brings. We are so thankful for Anchored Adventures and Ms. Magen!

Saturday, August 13, 2016

Catching up -- July

Just before our company came on the 4th, Cooper taught himself how to dive. Although Tess usually does things quicker (and with much less hesitation or fear) than Cooper, both of my kids have been consistent about setting their minds to learning new tasks and working hard to accomplish their goals.  Currently, I'm hoping that potty training takes high priority for Tess as far as goal-accomplishing goes. Fingers crossed that that's a post I will write in the not too distant future. 

TK had to "dive" just like her brother.

My birthday fell on a Sunday this year, so I got the royal treatment all weekend. We didn't really have any plans, but we did go to eat with the Holmeses on Friday night at a seafood buffet I had heard great things about and had been wanting to try. It didn't disappoint. On Saturday, we went to watch one of Evan's baseball games as his all-star team competed for the state championships. Then we headed to the Unclaimed Baggage Store on the way home...another place I had been wanting to visit. On Sunday, we just laid around and rested. I was even able to take a little nap on our new comfy couch. For dinner, we went to Toke, one of my favorites in our new town. It was a very nice and relaxing way to ring in #33!

First ring pop...she's hooked!

After Connecticut, I got really serious about running again. We have a great neighborhood to run in, plus I had gotten a new fitness watch for my birthday that I wanted to put to good use. I made sure I picked a waterproof one, as I also started swimming laps almost daily. But then my right knee started hurting. Really bad. I ran for two extra days after it started bothering me, but on that second try, I knew I had to stop. It started swelling and was sometimes hot and painful to the touch. Turns out, it was an arthritic flare-up. Hellllooo, mid thirties! I have posted before about my weirdo autoimmune arthritis diagnosis, but that has always presented in my hands, wrists and shoulder. A very painful knee was new. My rheumatologist is still in Birmingham, but they called in a steroid pack for me to take care of the inflammation. Within hours of the first dose, I started feeling better. It was amazing! And a few doses in, I was feeling better physically than I had in ages. I know it sounds so stupid, but I could actually shampoo my hair without my fingers hurting or feeling weak! I could not believe how great I felt...or how much pain and irritation I had been feeling daily. The day after I finished my prescription, all my pain was back. I dealt with a couple days of that, and then it has gradually tapered off, thank goodness. It's still not back to 100%, but it's tolerable. I started running again last week, but now I try to just run every other day to give my knee a break. It doesn't feel great, but it's not terrible either, so that's a win in my book!

The rest of July was a lot like the rest of June; lots of swimming, laying low, running errands and getting to know G'ville.

Tess took this picture of her bro. Impressive, right?

Her new swimming baby. Cooper named her Summer. Tess calls her "Baby Summa." 

Annnddd look who's playing with Baby Summa...

We finally got the tv hooked up in our bedroom, so Tess now likes to cuddle in our bed and watch movies. With a lollipop, of course.

And sometimes she chooses our bed as the stage for one of her (many) dramatic tantrums.

Or...acts a fool while I'm trying to find a dress for a wedding.

Tessa Kate really took to the water in June and got super comfortable in our pool. In July, however, she decided she didn't want to wear her puddle jumper anymore. She told us she wanted to swim in only her "swim soup." So, I gave her a little refresher course from her swim lessons and she was off. She's a true swimmer now, which makes me both extremely proud and extremely nervous. She's fearless! I really need to take more photos and video of her doing her thing, but when she is in the pool now, an adult has to be in there with her. And more often than not, I am that adult. She is doing so well, though. She might still have a paci and she's definitely not potty trained, but the girl can swim!

This is how she started swimming to me. Now, though, I'm much further away from the stairs. When she gets to me, she'll say, "go back." And then she swims right back to the stairs!

I love this picture of TK's arm wrapped around Cooper's neck. :-)

Jay brought me home flowers one day for no reason...those are the best kind!!

These two little buddies...! 

One Saturday, we randomly drove to Point Mallard in Decatur. It was not a pleasant experience. We won't be going back.

We had to wait out the rain in Jay's truck. Cooper is obsessed his muscles. 

To make sure we ended our crappy day off on a good note, we went to Tessa's favorite Japanese restaurant. 

Sometimes it's a time-out kind of day...

Cooper made a new friend! George came to stay with us one night...

...and then they went to basketball camp!

Totally forgot to include this in my post about Jamie's wedding: After it was over, some of us hung out downstairs for a bit and we saw Nyle DiMarco, the deaf guy who won America's Next Top Model and Dancing with the Stars!

These aren't the best pics, but trust me, he was right there near us. 

Tessa Kate has a new friend, too. Grace Ann lives down the street from us and will be in her class at school this year. :-)

That was July in a nutshell. I think I might be just about caught up!