Thursday, May 31, 2018

Wrapping-up Another School Year

Ty finished second grade with an award for looking out for others all year. He is excited to experience third grade and has his heart set on a specific teacher I am fairly certain he won't have next year. We have been in meetings with the assistant principal and his current teacher throughout the year and know they have a specific person in mind to best suit his anxious personality. I fear the cool teacher isn't who they have preselected for Ty. I trust them even if he is disappointed.
When he got home from his final day of school, he announced he was on summer vacation and would be playing video games all night. We compromised. Instead of going to bed at 8pm, he got to stay up until 9pm. However, our thirty minutes of video game time per day rule remains. Believe it or not, he was so happy celebrating his new bedtime, he failed to note the lack of additional video time.

Kate graduated 6th grade with a ceremony celebrating the end of her elementary school career. She earned the Presidential achievement award for maintaining at least a 90% in course work and passing Istep testing. In addition, she earned acknowledgment for math and language arts excellence as well as perfect attendance for her final nine weeks of school. Obviously, she is grounded for the summer 😉.

Makenna performed an enthusiastic "it's my final school night ever" dance just before 11pm Tuesday night. This weekend holds graduation,  a small party to celebrate and the kick-off to her final theatre commitment. All God's people said, "amen."
Kate and Ty have created summer bucket lists and I deliberately kept my babysitting commitment light for the next two months to embrace this season with my kiddos. Time flies; after all.

Monday, May 28, 2018

Science Center Date

In a very rare moment, Greg and I found ourselves alone with only one kid so we utilized our Science Center membership for the first time. Ty literally bounced from one display to another for two hours.

Somehow, we managed to keep up with him. Barely.

We finished our date with Ty's favorite, Jimmy John's. He was pleased but quickly ditched us for adventure in the field out back with light sabers once we returned home.

Sunday, May 20, 2018

Birthday party, a banquet and a wedding

This Saturday, like all weekends in the month of May had us juggling multiple events at the same time. Choosing to hire an artist to teach a painting class to Kate's friends has to be one of the smartest decisions I have made in 2018. She came to my home, set up the party, lead the entire two hours and cleaned it up. The kids loved it and at the end, I asked if she did graduation parties because I am lacking the required creative energy needed to plan another event already.

Makenna attended her fourth and final Thespian Banquet just after Kate's party wrapped. She was acknowledged for her commitment and leadership within the department. She also earned recognition during her class day awards ceremony Friday.
The day after graduation, she will be back at the school every day preparing to relaunch Newsies for the Kentucky Center of the Arts in preparation for their presentation in Nebraska at festival at the end of June. So whereas we can see the finish line of her high school career, this theatre gig is anything but over.

Kate made the middle school cheer team on her birthday. All God's people said amen because this mom was not ready to face rejection with a fresh teen on her birthday. But she also wants to try out for volleyball and will be getting team information after school Monday. Suddenly my summer is looking rather chaotic, which is the exact opposite of what I ordered.

As that truth resonates, I am finding refuge in one of Kate's birthday gifts.......

I woke at 6am on Saturday, tossed on some pearls and ventured next door for a pajama and pearl royal wedding party. Why not? Kid-free, hot tea and finally mimosas made for a lovely start to a very full day.

Thursday, May 17, 2018

Kate turns 13

I recently saw a mug that read, "I survived life with a teenage daughter" and I thought to myself, "it's too soon to call". Round four appears to be fully charged with emotion, tears and all the insecurity her sisters endured before her. This is season no joke, even with the sweet ones.

She is still snuggly, worried about others, sensitive and creative. She struggles to find an appropriate voice as sarcasm is still not comfortable nor is the sharp tone she attempts when she is annoyed, which is more often that not these days.

She stands as tall as me which happens to be taller than Makenna and this delights her; little sister, but big too.  Her spirit is still seeking and her love of small children is evident. Serving in church, helping with friend's babies and teaching little ones something new always puts her at ease.

Hand the girl paints, markers a sewing machine or slime ingredients and sister is in her happy place. It's the sharp contrast to the constant need to flip around the yard or vacant store aisles.

She still rejects most electronics as she prefers the company of others to any screen and this delights us as she stands against what is considered normal for her age. We happen to prefer her face too.

She loves clothes, shopping, shoes, nail polish and hanging out with her sisters. When they include her, she feels special and a part of an elite tribe. This will be her safety net as all those before her can attest, at times Mom loses her mind and cannot handle one more tear.
My prayer for Kate as she navigates the teen years is to find her voice, be empowered to stand up not only for herself in relationships but also defend those who are unable. She has the spirit of empathy and a reflective spirit. I pray she is guided accordingly.
I pray she also continues to see value in her smile and her kind heart. She deserves the best of close friends and I hope she seeks authentic relationships as her heart is so tender.
As she creates, I pray she knows the One who first created beauty in our world. I hope she understands we were blessed with her for a purpose so much bigger than even we can imagine.
She was born singing and as she grew light freckles appeared on the bridge of her nose. Thirteen years later and I still can't get enough of them. She is a miracle, my rainbow baby.
And that laugh. May it always find its way back into her voice because that in and of itself is pure joy.
Welcome to the teen years, Kate Ryan. Despite all the frozen chocolate chips I will be handing you as I send you to your room for reflection, I do love what this next season holds. As we enjoy deeper conversations and navigate the bigger life themes, I am blessed to already be so close to you, my remarkable girl. Happy birthday, Kate Bug.

Sunday, May 13, 2018

Makenna's Senior Prom

Mother's Day

Ty gave me the cutest little plant he'd started as a seed. When I asked him what kind of plant it was, he looked incredibly disappointed in me. He answered as slowly and as sarcastically as an eight year old can muster, "a mother's day one".

The survey confirmed he really isn't listening when I speak because I say, "stuff". As it turns out, I do. But the card about his love growing and growing was precious.

My parents came to town to celebrate Kate's upcoming birthday and see Makenna off to prom. It was nice to spend the day with my mom this year. She bought me a piece of Cheesecake Factory Godiva Chocolate cheesecake for Mother's Day. My husband thought he was going to eat it for me. He was wrong. Dead wrong. Things got a little scary here for a minute.

And Lauren celebrated her first mother's day with two month old Austin. Her visit in June cannot come soon enough.