Friday, June 9, 2017

Action's (aka...) School Year in Review

Action finished his last day of 7th grade. Let me tell you, this school year wasn't without some struggles and frustrations both for him and Hubby and I.  Don't get me wrong, it was full of good, fun, laughs and happiness as well! 

Let's begin as I did with Hannah yesterday ~ Nicknames.  

Action.... Action got his nickname not only on this blog, but in real life as well.  We don't really use it anymore, but we use to.  Jackson is his actual name.  Action wasn't his only nickname either, Sodbuster was his other one.  Just as the busyness the name Action implies,  Sodbuster does as well.  Technically it means a farmer or worker who plows the land.  Jackson was busy and full of life.  Some of that constant moving and busyness has faded away, but he is still full of life.

Lets begin with September 2016

School started ~ 7th Grade

Football was in full swing.  Jackson had fun working hard and learning new positions.  It is definitely a proud parenting moment when you see your child work so hard.

Football Season ran right into hunting season.  Jackson took the hunter safety course required to get a  hunting license, meaning instead of just walking along, he was able to shoot.  This was an exciting first time for him and he couldn't wait to get out in the fields.

Of course right after that came Halloween.  I'm not sure Jackson has many more years of dressing up (and trick-or-treating anyway) ahead of him but this year he decided to dress up as Robin Hood (much to his dismay, his little sister dressed up as Robin Hood's Sister ~ as we called her anyway! Pics of that in my next post) This costume seemed to carryon the hunting theme ~ bow hunting instead

January was a busy month!

First, Jackson was able to travel with Smiley and I to meet his new cousin.  We thought we were heading on a 4 hour journey to attend a baby shower.  Baby shower turned into a birthday party when this little guy decided to arrive 3 weeks early!  A surprise for sure, but wonderful as we were all there to celebrate anyway!

The next weekend, he was able to head out of town with Dad, a buddy, and a few other guys for a fun  boys weekend.  They had a lot of fun hanging out and ice fishing.

Finally, we had a big day to celebrate.  Jackson's 13th Birthday!!! We didn't just have one celebration either.  (all the details are in this post)

One with just us as a family (with his favorite chocolate cake with chocolate frosting)

Another celebration with Grandpa and Grandma when they were able to come up for a visit.  This time he picked cheesecake as his celebration dessert.

Finally, he had a small party with a couple of friends.  First things first they went and worked up an appetite at a paint ball facility. They had a blast ~ literally and each of them had a few paint ball bruises to show for it!  Afterwards, they had a cupcake (or maybe a couple) to celebrate. Again ~ chocolate cake with chocolate frosting, just in cupcake form.

Once we got through January, things slowed down a bit.  The holidays were over, his birthday was celebrated. Time to focus on school and family.  Soon enough though, spring was creeping up on us.
Easter took us to Grandpa and Grandma's house where church, good food and lots of family were just what we needed.  Of course there was time to do a little four wheeler riding'

Baseball tryouts happened, and the team is practicing and gearing up for some fun baseball.  Jackson is playing with some buddies from previous years and is excited to play.

And just like that, 7th grade is over.
Jackson isn't very organized and finds himself playing catch up a lot of times when it comes to homework which hubby and I find completely frustrating.  However he had a good 7th grade year.  He made some fun memories and ended up with good grades.  We are definitely ready for summer though (and a haircut! Sheesh!)


Thursday, June 8, 2017

Sassy's (aka....) school year in review

Today is Sassy's last day of 10th grade.  As of tomorrow, I am the mother of a Junior in high school.  As I reflect on this school year with her, I have to acknowledge that the nickname I gave her years ago when I started this blog no longer fits.  She is not a sassy girl.  She does have a little sass from time to time of course, but don't we all?  Therefore, from this point on, I am going to talk about her with her actual name, Hannah.

This year for her was filled with laughter, family, friends, God, school, sports and so much more!  The memories she made this school year will be with her forever.
Lets start at the beginning (and the end):

Here she is:
excited for her first day of 10th grade (on the left) and really excited for her last day (on the right)

She was able to play volleyball for her high school ~ she was on the JV team,  but sat for the Varsity team 
and was able to play in a handful of games:

Once the high school volleyball season ended, it was time to play club volleyball.  Between that, offseason softball training and school there was little free time left.  She definitely worked hard at all three!

However, she was a "superman" for a friend who played on the high school basketball team and seemed to find time to make him fun treats on home game days as well as go to a few games when her schedule would allow

She also was able to go to a SnoDaze dance at a different high school that many of her friends attend

She attended her own high school SnoDaze dance and asked a friend (click the link to see how she asked) to go with her

March brought with it a big milestone.  Hannah celebrated her 16th birthday.

The day after her birthday, she easily passed her driving exam and got her license.

Once spring hit, high school softball was in full swing.  This is the first year in many years we didn't go anywhere for spring break.  Kind of a bummer to be home but Hannah was able to go to softball practice everyday!
This softball season brought challenges right along with it.  You see, Hannah usually plays shortstop or is a pitcher.  Those are the positions she has played in high school and club softball.  Those are the 2 positions she worked on all off season a minimum of a couple times per week. So, when her coach told  her to go to right field the practice right before their first game, her jaw hit the floor.  I'm not going to lie, it took a few days for her to wrap her head around this decision, but ultimately she decided her coach must have enough confidence in her to do well in that spot and to want her on the varsity team in general.  She worked hard all season long and for that I am very proud of her!

She also worked hard at church and this May was Confirmed

Also in May she went to prom with her"friend" and a group of others.  
She had a great time except for the fact that she had an 8am volleyball game the following morning!

This has been a great school year for Hannah and I am looking forward to cheering her on in softball this summer 
and enjoying our time together!

Thats a wrap!

Wednesday, June 7, 2017

In the beginning....

At the beginning of this year I set my mind on getting back to blogging.  I mean, besides the fact that I enjoy writing and have met many people via my blog, I really just wanted to get back to why I started all of this in the first place.  In the beginning, I wanted this space to be an avenue for our family members and friends who live in different states (or simply just a few hours away) to always be able to connect with whats going on in our lives.  I wanted to inspire people to love the life they live and seek the beautiful in the ordinary.

Nothing has changed, I still want that.

However, since I haven't kept up, you all are going to get blasted with a school year review for each kiddo.  This will be similar to how you got blasted with a summer review.  If you don't remember, here you go: Sassy ~ Action ~ Smiley

I'll start tomorrow with Sassy.

Tuesday, February 21, 2017

A Dance: Then and Now

Sassy and I went shopping with our mind set on one thing:
finding just the right dress.
She tried on a few and we decided on one together.
The day of the dance arrived and I helped her fix her hair, get ready and attend to some last minute touch ups.
I pulled out the camera and started snapping away.

A Daddy - Daughter dance. 

She even issued an official invitation (check it out here)

She was so excited.

She loved fixing her hair, getting dressed up and applying a little lip gloss.

I loved watching her anticipation - joy - enthusiasm and touch of nervousness.

She had a blast  -  She danced with her Dad and her friends.

It was a great night!

Fast forward a few years

I had ordered a dress Sassy liked online because they did not carry it in the store. She received it in the mail, but wanted to go shopping to make sure she had the perfect dress for the occasion.  Sassy tried on many dresses, we took pictures of her in all of them.  She thought she had decided on a red one instead of the one we ordered, but wasn't quite ready to bite the bullet. 
Later that evening she tried on the ordered dress one more time. Her decision was made, it was definitely "the one", the red one was out!
Once that was decided it was time to shop for shoes and earrings.

Sassy knew she wanted her hair up, and thought I would be just the person to create the up-do she was imagining (I'm so glad she had the confidence in me that I was lacking!).  Thanks to online tutorials, I was able to create what she was hoping for.
She looked liked a fancied up version of her already beautiful self.
 She looked older and mature and I couldn't believe my little girl who just years ago was going through these similar motions for a dance with her Daddy, was going to this dance.
She's gone to other semi-formals with friends but this time was a bit different.
She was going with a young man for the first time.

She asked, and he said, "Yes"

(this was the girls ask guys dance)

Again, she was filled with that mix of feelings:

anticipation - joy - enthusiasm and a touch of nervousness

(I didn't want to post his picture without permission, so just imagine a handsome, polite young man)

She had a great time and created another evening to remember!


Tuesday, February 14, 2017

Another Teenager in the House!

Action has been talking about this day for 2 1/2 years.

I don't know why, but when Sassy turned 13, back in 2014, I thought it would be fun to get her 13 presents ~ a couple bigger items and a bunch of little items: lotions, nail polish, fun socks, you know 13 year old girly stuff.  

What I didn't realize was, I was creating a new tradition.  One that Action couldn't wait for.  Thirteen presents on your 13th birthday! Oh, the anticipation!

Fast forward to Sunday January 22nd.  Oooh the air was abuzz with excitement.  Action came down from his bedroom in the morning after a good nights sleep to see that there were indeed 13 presents lined up in front of the fireplace just waiting for him.  However, upon further counting, he was bummed to see there were actually only 12.  I had to explain to him that the headphones he "needed" a few days earlier because his older ones had broken were actually part of the 13 (*wink *wink ~ more to come later!) gifts.

No worries, he was still excited!

Now he just had to wait until his Dad and Sassy got home from softball practice........

When they finally got home, present opening began:

He received:
A Book Light
Nerf Gun Darts
Body Spray
Body Wash
Twix Candy
A Duvet
A Duvet Cover (time to redo his room ~ an update the decor he'd had since he was 2)
A Book
New Wall Art
Sneakly I wrapped presents 12 and 13 together in a one, so it looked like he was only getting 12 presents!  #12 was his first cell phone and #13 was a case for his phone.

Needless to say he was excited!

We went to Buffalo Wild Wings for lunch and when we got home it was time for CAKE!

True to form, he requested his favorite chocolate cake with chocolate frosting (RECIPE HERE ~ with update pictures!).

A week later Grandpa and Grandma were able to make the 4 1/2 hour drive to visit.  Sassy had a volleyball tournament, but we still found time to celebrate our newest 13 year old.  This time the requested dessert was cheesecake ~ yummy!

(I think 13yr old stayed up too late the night before ~ he looks a bit sleepy in this picture!)

But that wasn't all!  Just last weekend, Action had a couple of buddies over to celebrate as well!  They went to an indoor paintball facility for a few hours, came back to our house to have  ~ you guessed it ~ CAKE, chocolate cake (although in cupcake form), and spent the night.

I think this kid of mine had a good time celebrating his 13th birthday!

Tuesday, November 8, 2016


The years go by so fast.....

I look at Sassy and I am sometimes taken aback at what I see.  

The little girl who use to cry as we were trying to get out the door in the mornings because her socks didn't feel right, 
has become this beautiful young woman.  
(teaching her sister how to pitch)

Hard to believe she is in 10th grade, working hard at school and sports, preparing for confirmation and 
getting ready to get her drivers license (she earned her drivers permit this past July).
 (Passed the written test ~ on the first try ~ and received her permit)

 (Drove part of the way to a softball tournament ~ 14 hours round trip)

(yep, she drove into and through the city ~ gotta learn sometime)

She helped to fill our summer calendar with her softball practices, games and tournaments 
(a week long one in Colorado created lots of memories!).  
It is fun to cheer her and her team on.  Win or lose they played hard and are a great group of girls!

Sassy works hard at everything she does.

This season for high school volleyball, she made the JV team and was a "swinger" for the Varsity team.  Meaning, she attended varsity events, practices and games and played when called upon.  Her JV team ended the season 22-4, with one first place tournament finish and her Varsity team ended 24-2 with two first place tournament finishes.  She received a high school letter for her hard work.  
She had a fun season and made new friendships along the way.

She thrives on being busy.  I am always amazed at how well she does balancing school, softball, and volleyball, 
yet finds time to sneak in some fun!

Her sports never seem to end ~ she had softball tryouts for next summer's club team in August.  
They played a few tournaments together this fall and have winter training starting up soon.  
Winter club volleyball tryouts are next weekend.
(everyone needs to eat a giant donut at least once in their life!)

Her smile is contagious and her caring personality melts my heart.