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Monday, June 30, 2014

Warriors in training

     What happens when your older sister is cutting up old t-shirts and gives you the sleeves? You can easily be converted into mini warriors!
Lindsay cut off a few sleeves on her shirts and let JT and Mason wear them as hats.

 Mason and JT immediately went into ninja mode and started posing, chopping, and kicking.

 It was hilarious and adorable at the same time.

Mason protecting his Angry Bird.

 Fine form my young student.

Nice balancing pose!

Friday, June 27, 2014

Birthday Party in Atlanta

    Day two of our weekend trip to Atlanta was the party day! It was Henry's 5th birthday and we were invited to celebrate!

It was a party that involved sprinklers, so JT was ready to go very early. As soon as he got his swim trunks on, he would ask every few moments, "Is it time to go to Henry's party yet?"

When we arrived, there was a kiddie pool set up and JT couldn't wait to jump in with Kayla and Henry.

Soon after, Giovanni joined the crew.

These two boys were buddies all weekend long. They have similar personalities with their sweetness, and silliness.

Sprinkler time!!!

After some fun in the water, it was time to do some treasure hunting in the sand box.

JT found beautiful rocks, shells, and coins.

Time to wash off the sand!

After a while, it was time to clean up and head inside for food and cake. We all sang Happy Birthday to Henry and were amazed at the awesome flower candle that popped open and moved in a circular motion while it had the Happy Birthday tune playing.

. The kids had all of the fixings for their own sundaes. I LOVE JT's face in this photo and he stares at the waffle bowl. This was his first time using one, so I'm sure he was excited.


Lizzy, another June bug who lives in the Atlanta area, also came to the party. I was amazed at how well all of the kids got along.

JT's creation- ice cream topped with chocolate and butterscotch chips, star sprinkles, and some sour gummy worms.

After eating the yummy food, the kids headed back outside to play some more.

JT hanging out with the young ladies of the group.

All of the boys (sans the birthday boy). L-R: Giovanni, JT, Hugh(another local June bug), and Xander.

Our attempt at getting all of the kids to pose for some photos together. Imagine 9 Mom's yelling various instructions- "Look here sweetie! Can you scooch over so your friend can have more room? Smile!"

I wasn't able to capture all of the sweet faces in the group photo and a good portion of them were hanging out here with Xander.

One of the party favors was construction hats. It was precious to watch our little workers make bridges, fix the roads, and work very hard together to finish their jobs.
We ended the party by getting all of the June Moms together for a nice photo. L-R: Me, Kelly, Jen, Cindy, Nicole, Deb, Krista, Shannon, and Ravi. A big thanks to Jen's husband who took these photos, along with several others from the other cameras we each brought. It was so nice to meet a few of the ladies that I talk to on a regular basis and have done so for more than 5 years. It's been a joy sharing our lives and the hardest/most rewarding job of parenthood with you.


Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Meeting new friends & the big hike

     This past weekend, JT and I hit the road and headed to Atlanta. The rest of the Apedaile6 crew was either at camp or working, so it was our first big Mommy and son trip. We headed there to meet some June Momma's and their children to celebrate one of the "June bugs" 5th birthday. This was JT's first time meeting any of the children from the group, so I explained to JT how all of the kids he was about to meet were all 5 or about to be five. That excited him very much and he was ready for his fun weekend.

 All of the families met at Sweetwater State Park on the outskirts of Atlanta for a fun day of exploring and hiking. First stop- the playground!
 John was the only Daddy brave enough to join our crew for the first day. His little boy is Giovanni, he the one with a hat on. John loves to have fun and be silly and he was a fantastic guide for our hike.
 Day one we had 7 June Bugs. This was the sad effect of holding silly faces for the 7 Mom's snapping photos and taking turns looking at each person.
L-R: Koraline,Rain, JT, Kayla, Giovanni, Henry, and Xander.
 John was also kind enough to take several photos of our entire group together. Each Mom is standing behind their June bug.  This was my first time meeting everybody except Ravi(pink shirt & wearing a baby), whom John and I met during a trip to Florida 2 years ago.
 We started out on the trail.
 JT pointing out all of the cool things he was finding.
 I was ready for the hike with my camera, camelback, and the most colorful shoes.
 We started at the beginning of the White Trailhead, but it merged with the Red Trail that we were going to hike.
 The kids investigating a  large hole in the tree trunk.
 Krista explaining to the kids that we need to follow the trees with the red markings to stay on our path.
 Most of the trail followed along the edge of the large lake and it was so beautiful.
 Many small creeks to be discovered.
 JT enjoyed stopping at all of the signs to have me read what information was there describing the history of the site or what type of nature things we could be finding in the area.

 The kids loved this large rock outlook. Of course most wanted to explore and go towards the edge.
We were all a hot, sweaty mess but JT kept his happy face on.

Several opportunities on the trail to demonstrate his excellent balancing skills.

Absolutely beautiful scenery.

The area that most of the kids took off their shoes and played in the creek. JT was ready to join the fun, but the moment his bare feet hit the squishy creek mud, he immediately demanded that his shoes be put back on. He wanted nothing to do with it. I'm sure this is a quality that JT picked up from me.

JT was able to discover a new little creature on our hike.

It was an inch worm. I've never seen one in person, so I was pretty mesmerized myself.

Look how cool this little guy is! All of the kids loved looking at this for several minutes and took turns holing it.

 I'd love to come back here when the fall colors are in full bloom.

JT and I are having so much fun!

The sound of the water rolling down these rocks and mini waterfalls was so peaceful and relaxing.

We all took a little break on a walkway that had benches. JT, Rain, and Henry all enjoyed some homemade cookies.

JT standing in front of the remains of an old mill that stood by the riverfront.

The information board about the mill.

Heading back to our starting point to enjoy some snacks.
Our last stop was a brief look through the visitors center. JT has a pretty good impression of the bear. Afterward, we all sat under a covered picnic area and enjoyed some lunch. The kids played tag and hide & go seek while the adults visited. Then, a pretty massive storm moved in and dumped a ton of rain on the area. We took that as our sign to head back to the hotel and get cleaned up. We had a wonderful day of hiking and meeting our friends.