Blog Archives for category Firsts

Our little hip hopper!

Katie and Sophia are taking Hip Hop and are super excited about it.

Warming up!

Owen loved watching Katie!

Freestyling at the end of class!

Katie is pawsome!


And this was in the class’ weekly newsletter.


Owen is trying archery!

We let him choose what class he wanted to take at the community center and he decided on archery!

I think he loves his ATV.

Remember me saying we wanted to try to give the kids experiences instead of stuff? Yeah, well, we also agreed that bigger things instead of lots of little junky stuff would be good, too…so we let Owen decide if he wanted to spend his birthday money to pay half of an ATV. (We had wanted to get them the power wheels but Owen is too big. A neighbor has an electric ATV that Owen loved so that’s how we got the idea.) He immediately agreed so he gave us all of his remaining birthday gift cards and still owes us about $100. 



Unfortunately, it arrived like this so Tom had some work to do.


The besties are home again!

Just as with Owen I have to physically get Katie off the bus. The bus driver called their names over the radio/intercom and then they have to tell her their name and I have to give her my name and she checks the list. I’m assuming this will get slightly less involved as time goes on and the bus driver learns who we are.

As soon as they got off the bus they crossed the street together (holding hands).

I didn’t get much info out of her about her first day before she was asking if she could go play at Sophia’s house (yes, after she got play clothes on) so I sent over this craft project:

She did say it was fun. I told her she would have to tell us more about it later.

Katie’s first day of Kindergarten!

This is an idea I saw somewhere and decided to do for Katie…she will wear this shirt on the first day of school until she’s a senior in high school!


There are only three kids at the bus stop!

Katie is in the seat right above SCHOOL.

Katie’s kindergarten open house


Mrs. Valentine

The huge playground (one of three!).

Getting to check out a bus!

She went straight to the very back seat!

That’s a “bike path” on the right. The raised circular structure on the left is for a specific game (Owen’s school has a smaller one).

Back inside to check out the cafeteria (no pics) and the gym! She made a beeline to the rock wall!


Owen’s first day of 3rd grade!

I had to go in and wake him up at 7:30!! This year he gets on the bus at 8:25—that’s a half hour earlier than what we were used to in Virginia!

Katie holding Owen’s hand as he was waking up.

Owen and his bestie, Nate (2nd grade):

They are the only two at their bus stop!

Blue Man Group in Chicago!

I’ve always wanted to see Blue Man Group and when I mentioned it to Grannie she said they’d like to go, too…so it was off to Chicago!

Photos weren’t allowed during the show so this is all I got beforehand.

The kids absolutely loved it and they immediately asked if they could see it again. :)

Edited to add some googled pics of what we saw: 


We met Owen’s principal and teacher today!

This morning was a “meet the new principal” playground playdate—that I completely forgot about until it was almost over. It’s a good thing we live three minutes away so we were there in a hot second. We met the principal (he seemed very nice) and the kids played and had icee pops. 

This is one of two playgrounds at the school (this is the one for Owen’s side). It’s nice but seemed a little small for as big as the school is (comparing it to his last school). They do have a huge grassy area and a huge blacktop area as well, though. 

As things were wrapping up, I asked the principal if there was any way we could take a quick walk through the school or schedule something and he offered to take us through right then! So we walked the halls and even met Owen’s teacher!! She’s really nice and I have a good feeling about her. Yay!!

A few minutes at the mall playground. 

The kids had to run an errand with me and the mall playground happened to be right outside the store I was at…so I let Katie play for a few minutes. (If it looks somewhat familiar, it’s because it’s the same parent company as the mall by us in Virginia.)


Owen’s first time shooting!

Owen was so excited to go shooting! He’s doing pretty well with remembering the three rules (generally speaking he knows them but had trouble repeating them) so we’ll keep working on that. (If he can remember 632 things about Pokémon, he can remember the three rules about gun safety.)


His shots were all in the black!


Last trip to Burke Lake

Probably our last trip to Burke Lake with friends…we visited our usual playground and we finally rode the train!

They did this all on their own… (That said, Katie says Jackson is her boyfriend. Jackson says AJ is his girlfriend.)


The kids loved it. LOVED IT. 

Owen’s first big league baseball game!!

Lisa and Lori are huge baseball fans and Tom has wanted to take Owen to a professional baseball game since we’ve been here, so it seemed fitting that they all go together while Katie and I stayed home. I wouldn’t have minded going, but I know Katie would have gotten bored (she’s used to being able to run around and play with her friends during Owen’s SHORT games, so I couldn’t imagine her sitting for a three-hour game) so I kept her home and took her to the Friday Night Swim instead.

Owen even had the right cap to wear as one of his previous baseball teams was the Nationals! (He thought her had a shirt, too, except we determined that was the season they only got plain red shirts with logo caps.)

They got home about 11:30 (there was an hour metro ride home after the game) and Owen was STILL excited when he walked in the door. I’m so glad they got to go and he got to see everything!

Our last bingo night—and we won two baskets!

Headed off to our last PTO Bingo Night! :(

We actually donated a big snack basket this year (I’ve been wanting to donate one for awhile now) and I debated buying raffle tickets because we don’t need anything… But it was to benefit the school so why not?! I bought 20 and gave each of the kids five tickets to put in whatever they wanted. Katie put all hers in the Emoji Basket and Owen put his in an Art Basket. I spread the rest out between some Chocolate Baskets and the Art Basket.

Owen wanted to sit with his friends…

So the first bingo game starts and Katie literally had every single number called and we were sure she was going to win…but she didn’t. But imagine our surprise when they brought up the first basket—one of the chocolate baskets—and we won!! Woohoo!!

Soon the Emoji Basket came up and I happened to record it just in case…

All night Katie kept saying “I can’t believe we won TWO baskets!” :) This makes up for three years of winning nothing!

This was the kindergarten chocolate basket. We really really lucked out—everything from M&Ms to s’more fixins to brownie mix to sandwich cookies to truffles to camel milk chocolates!!!

And enough emoji stuff to choke a horse!!

What little girl wouldn’t want unicorn lips?!

Let me just tell you how excited Katie was when I told her she could wear mommy’s lip stuff and that I had unicorn gloss for her! (It’s LipSense Opal gloss.)


Ice cream truck!

The kids have been bugging us and bugging us and bugging us about getting ice cream from the ice cream man ever since he started coming around this spring. We promised them we’d do it once before we moved—but the timing would have to be right since he usually comes to the playground after school and that is right before dinner. So today we were at Julie’s and she was going to get something for Kayleigh and offered to get something for Katie… Well I couldn’t very well have Katie telling Owen she got something so I texted Tom and had him send Owen out. They were thrilled. 


She finally went across after two months!

We have been trying to coach her over the top for two months now… She will get to the top and just stay there, then claim she’s too scared. Today she finally did it!! And then did it again and again like it was nothing!

She figured this out on her own. 

Our friends bring this little car to the playground and mostly it goes unused. But today Katie realized they could do this. :)

Garden stone Christmas present

I finally decided to do this project today.