August 2016, Latest & Greatest News

BirthDAY Fun at the Jacksonville Zoo!

While we celebrated with Liam’s 5th birthday party the weekend before the BIG day, we still wanted to make his actual birthDAY special. So, we packed the boys up & headed to my dad & stepmom’s in Jacksonville for the weekend. We spent his 5th birthday at the Jacksonville Zoo & Gardens, and we all enjoyed it so much! I have to say that we’ve been to the zoos in our immediate area fairly recently, but this one takes the cake {total pun intended}.

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The whole park was absolutely beautiful — the grounds & all the scenery, as well as the animals, of course. I loved that the animals had enormous free areas to be in, and yet, we could still see them so up close. Also, given the extreme Florida temps, there was an abundance of shade to keep us cool, plus fabulous “cool spots” throughout. These were actually air conditioned viewing areas….can we say awesome?!?! There is also a super cute splash pad for the kiddos. We didn’t get a chance to do that on this trip, but we’ll definitely be back!

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They have a train that runs all along the perimeter of the park with a stop at the entrance of the park and another at the back. Once you buy your ticket, you can literally ride around all day. So fun! This was one of Liam’s favorite parts of the day. We rode it 3 times 🙂

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Sitting on the train with his Papa ❤

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Checking out the birds & duckies…

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There was bamboo all over the zoo & the guide on the train told us that it was used for both shade and a sound barrier to the animals from the main road that the zoo sits on. I thought that was pretty neat!

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Peek-a-Boo!

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There were so many interesting sights all throughout the zoo. This was the Tiger Skywalk.  The tigers can actually walk across those bridges from their enclosures. So cool!

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This waterfall in the tigers area was so majestic to walk into & see, and they were awesome to sit & watch! They are such big cats & so beautiful.

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On our way out, we caught one of them dropping down from the skywalk & grabbing a snack. It was crazy to be so close to him & he totally didn’t care we were there 😉

A snapshot of some of the gardens area. It’s hard to see, but some of the trees in the distance are blue!

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Flamingos!

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More of the bamboo, and I loved this bridge…another example of how beautiful this zoo is!

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Hanging out in one of the aviaries & feeding these lovelies some sweet nectar ❤

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Squirrel Monkey….

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Chimpanzees ….the one over by the wall was totally lounging while snacking. There was a sweet baby in the mix, too, but it’s hard to see in this pic.

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Giraffes!! — These are my favorite ❤ …Liam giggled because he saw one of them pee & while we watched them eat, he couldn’t believe how big their tongues were 🙂

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The one on the far right of this pic below is one of the two babes they have there right now ❤

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Just hanging around! 🙂

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Lions! …they were napping.

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I spy a gator…..

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These two otters were hilarious! They wouldn’t stop rolling around & playing. So hard to grab a pic of them.

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Warthogs…

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For those of you who also watch ‘Jessie‘ on the Disney Channel, you will appreciate our excitement over seeing ‘Mrs. Kipling‘. hahaha!

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Family group pic …

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And, of course, what birthday would be complete without cake? He requested an ice cream cake…

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We had the best day with our little man at the Jacksonville Zoo & Gardens to ring in his 5th birthday! Definitely made some great memories! ❤ ….and, I still cannot believe our little baby boy is FIVE!! Facebook keeps showing me flashback memories from 5 years ago of all of these pics from his 1st weeks home & it’s totally tugging at my heartstrings. Don’t ya love it?!?!

Until next time, friends,

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July 2016, Latest & Greatest News

Happy 5th Birthday, Liam!

Today, we celebrate our kiddo’s 5th birthday! It is definitely a magical time for all of us, as the excitement on his behalf can barely be contained. Stephen & I have just been watching him grow in astonishment…..1st, we seriously can’t believe we made such an amazing little man. 2nd, he is growing way too fast!

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Here is the latest teddy bear pic ❤

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If you follow our adventures, you know this teddy bear pic is a fun regular measure of growth for us. Check out all our past pics & updates HERE


We continued our tradition of a BIRTHDAY INTERVIEW. The free printable of this can be found HERE.

As with last year’s interview, some of his answers were both quite surprising & hilarious!

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More from the previous year’s questionnaire that we used:

What is your name?: Liam

How old are you?: holds up 5 fingers

What is your favorite food?: (taps cheek as he’s thinking) pizza

What makes you laugh?: When Daddy makes funny faces

What are you afraid of?: bears

What is the best time of the day?: summer

Where do you like to go?: the beach

What do you like to do with your family?: the zoo


Other notable things these days …

He still refers to both me & Stephen as ‘guys’ , or as ‘hey guys’ …I pointed this out in last year’s update & that has not changed. It’s hilarious!

He is still a whiz with the iPad.

Dancing and Music are his passions. At any moment, he will break out with his latest moves or sing his heart out.

We have seen a tremendous amount of growth in the last 6 months. Both physically {as in we had to move him into size XS/S clothes after spending this last year in 4T/5T and we’re about to go shoe shoppi g again} and also emotionally/mentally. I know I have always said how easy going his personality is, and yes, that still holds true. However, in recent months, he has also began to assert himself more and test his boundaries. I think part of it is being in summer camp and being around older kids. He sees more now and is trying his limits at times.

He officially gave up naps in June.

We are officially not in daycare anymore as of last month. This summer, he has been enrolled in a Junior Summer Camp with kiddos Kindergarten age through 2nd grade.

He will start Kindergarten next month!!!

He has been taking a soccer class with camp this summer & really likes it.

He has also recently taken an interest in basketball.

He definitely has his own sense of style & is excellent at matching his outfits each day. Gone are the days when I can buy just about any cute clothes that I like. He is VERY picky about his shirts/tops & most days, they have to be character shirts {superheroes, star wars, disney, etc}.


Here is a look back at the last 5 year’s of birthday pics….

1st Birthday

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2nd Birthday

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Happy 5th Birthday, our sweet little man, Liam Michael!!

Words cannot express how much love fills our hearts for this kiddo. He is a blessing to us each & every day ❤

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July 2016, Latest & Greatest News

Splashing Good Birthday Fun!

Last weekend, we had a splashing good time celebrating Liam’s 5th birthday with family & friends. While his actual birthDAY is not until this weekend, we opted to hold his party a week early due to venue scheduling. We had such a great time at the Oviedo Splash Zone last year for his party, that we held it it there again this year. It definitely did NOT disappoint!

Little Man selected STAR WARS for his theme this year. I found these clever invitations on Etsy:

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The quiet before the storm of kiddos. The weather was already hot at 9:00 am, but we were thankful for gorgeous FL sunshine! Wee-man was ready to get his 5th birthday par-tay on 😉

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 This place is seriously amazing. It wasn’t even a question to not come here again this year. It’s literally a playground in the water ❤

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Since we are surrounded by water and everyone is playing, we keep the decorations simple. We decided to go with cake pops this year in lieu of cupcakes, and they were THE BEST. Ms. Lauren from Little Boy Blue Bakery in Oviedo completely outdid herself with these fantastic Star Wars themed pops. Be sure to follow her on Facebook and Instagram (@littleboybluebakery) and see all of her amazing creations!

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What kiddos doesn’t love a good party favor? Keeping with the simple, yet fun, theme, I found THIS idea online and was thrilled with the result! The TAGS were another find from Etsy 🙂

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One of my fav shots of the R2-D2 cake pop! // photo credit: Little Boy Blue Bakery

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I really have to brag about these pops because all I told Lauren was the theme and she completely delivered. We had Darth Vader, the Death Star, Chewbacca, R2-D2, and Stormtroopers. And, of course they ALL were SO delish!!

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Here’s a snap of 4 of the 5 masterpieces ….all of the Death Star pops were eaten by the time I thought to take this…lol!

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Jase & Liam 🙂

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Liam & James….

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Trying to get these boys to stop playing for 5 seconds and say cheese was IMPOSSIBLE…hahaha! // Brandon, Bryce, Liam & Jase

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Love these girls! They always have my back ❤

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And this lady has had my back since birth 😛 …my momma! So happy she’s back in the sunshine state with us!

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Sillies….

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Liam & Matthias…

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double trouble 🙂 ….Liam & Kenadie

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My heartstrings….my boys ❤

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We had ordered a Darth Vader cupcake from Sweet! here in town so we could put a candle in it & sing to him. As cute as they made this for him…..he loved Ms. Lauren’s pops so much that he never ate this 😛 …he later declared that he “loves loves loves cake pops” ….so, I believe we have a new fav around here!

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Love this family of mine….

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Munchin’ on a Darth Vader cake pop!

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….and, back in the water to play some more! All the kiddos had a great time & played ’till the facility literally turned the water off on the playground equipment to signal the party was done. Then, all of us parents had to pry them out of the pool 🙂

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One VERY happy & blessed boy!

{who shockingly did not fall asleep even on the drive home from the splash park}

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Thanks to everyone who came out to splash around with us! It really was such a great day & a super fun time to celebrate this sweet boy turning 5.

Hugs!

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July 2016, Latest & Greatest News

Milestones & Memories to FIVE

Our sweet boy is celebrating a milestone birthday in just about a week from now.

FIVE!!

I have said it every birthday, I know, but I really cannot believe how fast time goes by and how quickly these babes grow. We began the festivities this past weekend with his party, and it was the best day (more to come about that soon)! He had friends in Pre-K throughout the year turning five before him, so he has been anxious for his turn to come. I, on the other hand, would love to slow time down…hahaha! 😉

Since I love to reminisce, here are some memories and milestones of our pride & joy! Literally starting from the VERY beginning ❤


4D ultrasound pic

4D Ultrasound ~ 6.4.11 ~ 29 wks – this was our favorite image! Looks like he’s smiling at us.

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7.31.11 ~ BIRTHDAY!! One of his very 1st pictures! …While mr. man was expected to arrive on 8/20, he was bound & determined to make his appearance before July closed out. God blessed us with a healthy baby….he just needed some extra oxygen to get things going. I remember looking at him in this pic & he was so small. I couldn’t believe he was outside my belly & I was so afraid I would break him. ❤

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8.1.11 ~ 1st morning …we were already in total love!!

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12.26.11 ~ 1st time tasting rice cereal ….wasn’t the biggest fan. We soon changed over to oatmeal.

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3.8.12 ~ 1st ride in a shopping cart like a big boy.

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3.08.12 ~ tasting his 1st meat …Turkey & Rice. Look at the excitement on that sweet face! 🙂

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3.11.12 ~ Beginning to sit up on his own! Seriously, he has the BEST smile ever.

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3.25.12 ~ 1st time riding like a big boy in his stroller without the infant carrier….1st time with shades, too.

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4.5.12 ~ Passed out while playing in his pack-n-play ….this was hilarious to look down & see!

We said BYE BYE to paci on 12.11.13. More about that milestone HERE

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6.30.12 ~ 1st pair of shoes {still have those cuties tucked away, too!}

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6.30.12 ~ Crawling machine. When he 1st started to try to crawl, he went backwards 🙂

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8.18.12 ~ 1st haircut!! ….bye-bye curls

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9.29.12 ~ Pulling himself up to stand ….one of the 1st times!

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10.21.12 ~ Walking with his lion …P.S. he <3’d this toy SO much!

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1.13.13 ~ 1st bath in the big tub!

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1.13.13 ~ 1st time on a horse….Kira {at Mimi’s stables}!

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3.30.13 ~ Dressed up all spiffy for a family beach wedding …such a little man!

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6.9.13 ~ 1st night in his toddler bed. He also used to always sleep in that position ❤

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10.29.13 ~ Halloween costume after his fav bedtime buddy…Dalmatian puppy. This pic was also featured on the Babycenter’s IG & FB!

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11.26.13 ~ New raincoat & Lightening McQueen Shoes. Cuteness Overload.

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2.23.14 ~ Potty Training began!

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5.19.14 ~ 1st swim lessons with Ms. Katie!

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5.23.14 ~ Haircut fun ….he ALWAYS makes this face on the left when Miss Desiree cuts his hair ❤

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9.03.14 ~ Being silly with Mommy

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9.10.14 ~ Gymnastics class

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10.28.14 ~ Hanging with his best buddy

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5.3.15 ~ Healthy Kids Running Series

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3.27.15 ~ Wasn’t it just yesterday that this little hand fit around my finger?

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5.16.15 ~ myGym class

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5.24.15 ~ Magic Kingdom …always a magical family fun day at Disney

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7.08.15 ~ 1st visit to the dentist

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10.22.15 ~ Pre-Kindergarten picture day ….so grown up!

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12.18.15 ~ The boys & Christmas pj’s …a family tradition

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1.19.16 ~ 43 degrees in the sunshine state!

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5.15.16 ~ Dedication service at Church

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6.11.16 ~ Pre-K Graduation!


So many wonderful memories!! It was hard to just select these few to share. I could have just kept posting & posting. Thankful & blessed for each & every moment we have had with this amazing kiddo these last five years. He truly is a gift to us. We know time is going to keep flying by, so we just want to focus on staying present in the moments and building upon these wonderful memories.

Parenting is the hardest job, but it is, by far, the most rewarding & THE BEST job.

Hugs,

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June 2016, Latest & Greatest News

Preparing for Pre-K Graduation — A Look Back at Daycare

How is this day already here?!?! ~ Liam’s Pre-Kindergarten graduation is TOMORROW! I can hardly believe it. We are on the heals of ‘big boy school‘. Watching him evolve & grow throughout this year, I’ve been thinking a lot about this day & what it means for him and for our family. It really is such a huge milestone.

He has spent the last 4 years at the same daycare, and as I wrote in THIS post not that long ago, we really have entrusted his care & learning to the hands of the teachers & staff at his school. You have to advocate for your kiddos at this young age and trust your parental gut & heart. Also, I think it’s vital that you communicate with whomever is caring for them. That was vital for our family. Stephen & I couldn’t be there since we had to work. That’s why we chose daycare, but we still wanted to know what he was doing and learning. We didn’t just drop off & pick up. We stopped and greeted  his teachers and said hello. It makes a HUGE difference. They love your child like their own ❤

That said, I went through our memories over the last 4 years at Kids R Kids & pulled out some highlights 🙂


1st EVER day at school! …and, 1st time in a high chair & using a crayon & doing a craft project. All at a mere 4 months old. (I remember that my heart just about exploded when I saw this picture…so many firsts all at once!) ~ 12.16.11

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Another fun project while in the infant room ~ 3.13.12

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Class picture from the Infant Room ~ Suite 100 ….Look at the chunker in the middle front row!

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This pic was taken in June 2013, but this was of Liam reading a VERY special book — “Time For A Hug“. Our favorite teacher from the infant room, Ms. Kathy, gave it to him when he graduated from that room with her. We still have it ❤ …torn pages & all…lol!

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1st Water Day ~ Toddler Room, Suite 200 6.27.13

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Holiday’s have always been super fun at school. Valentine’s Day Party in Suite 150 ~ 2.14.13

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Class Picture from Suite 200 ~ 4.9.13

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When he moved to the other side of the building where all the Preschool Rooms were, we graduated to our 1st backpack. It will forever be called ‘giraffe backpack‘ around here, and while we stopped using it on a daily basis in Pre-K for space issues, I don’t think I can ever part with it…..Cuteness overload ❤ ❤ ~ 7.29.13 (1st day in Suite 250)

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Happiness is …Pajama Day, Suite 250 ~ 10.23.13

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Saying good-bye to one of the BEST teachers EVER. Ms Kathy!! ❤ ~ 11.23.13

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MLK art project excitement, Suite 250 ~ 1.22.14

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Celebrating another Valentine’s  with more of our fav teachers — Ms. Jenn & Ms. Tamie!! Cannot say enough about how much he loved his time with these ladies.  ~ 2.14.14

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Mardi Gra fun in Ms. Candice’s room, Suite 300 😉 …Ms. Candice is a saint & so kind for working with this mama bear through the trials of potty training! ~ 3.04.14

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So proud of his bird feeder project he made with Ms. Laura in Suite 350!  ~ 6.18.14

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He was only in Ms. Laura’s class for a few months but he still talks about her from time to time. She was a great teacher. She taught him to count to twenty in Spanish & he still remembers, today! ~ 8.14.14

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Liam’s 1st drawing that wasn’t ‘scribble scrabble’. I remember that I almost fell over when I saw this hanging up in his room. SO proud 🙂  ~ 1.29.15

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Last day with Ms. Dignora, Suite 400 for Preschool. She taught him to LOVE circle time & the days of the week song!  ~ 6.05.15

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Last June, Liam was excited to move back to the ‘big kids‘ building from the main center. We started early VPK for the summer in prep for VPK/Pre-K all year. It honestly was a harder transition on me than him (or Daddy…lol.) He flourished under the care & instruction of Ms. Samar! I like to peak at him from time-to-time on the camera access to see how his day is going, and sometimes, I really catch some hilarious tid bits. Here is one a snapped a screen shot of — he was ‘talking on the phone’ ….Love it!!, Early VPK, Suite 400EC ~ 6.18.15

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and then….VPK officially started! ~ 8.24.15

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A favorite art project from Pre-K — Family Tree Drawing ~ 9.15.15

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Circle time was seriously a fav for little dude. If we happened to go into school later on a given day than normal, he was adamant that he did not want to miss circle time. Love our little learner ❤ ~ 10.22.15

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All in blue in honor of World Diabetes Day // LOVES this playground …also Ms. Kaylee!  ~ 11.13.15

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Throughout his time here, we are thankful for the many opportunities for the parents to visit & be involved. We are also fortunate that are work schedules allow us to do this, too. While we Stephen & I normally swap events, this past Thanksgiving family lunch, we surprised little dude & both came ❤  ~ 11.25.15

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This was one of THE cutest productions ever. Liam performed his heart out & ate up the attention. All the kids & teachers did a wonderful job. It was adorable! — Pre-K Holiday Program ~ 12.17.15

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In-House field trip & the resulting painting was the coolest. Liam had a ball! — Yes, You CANvas ~ 12.23.15

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VPK brought on homework (or, extra activities) for the 1st time, but this little man tackled them each week like such a big boy. They always were family activities & they really helped reinforce what he was learning in the classroom. We also confirmed this year that he is a lefty, like his mama 🙂 ~ 1.16.16

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 VPK Garden — planting sunflower seeds with Ms. Samar– This activity was what sparked his interest in gardening and honestly, it lit a fire of interest that we love. We’ve now planted our own garden at home due to his request! ~ 3.11.16
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VPK — Another screen shot I grabbed because of cuteness overload. — Liam ‘reading’ to his class. I later asked him & he was turning the pages while they were listening the CD read the story…still impressive! ~ 4.11.16
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VPK Graduation Picture!!! ~ June 2016

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From December 2011 to June 2016 — oh, how far our sweet, sweet boy has come! ❤

Kindergarten bound now…..we can hardly believe it! Thank you to everyone who has loved him, hugged him, and taught him along the way. You have made a profound impact on our family, and we cannot thank you enough.

Script Signature

June 2016, Latest & Greatest News

Liam’s Dedication

On Sunday, May 15th, we proudly dedicated Liam at our church ~ Discovery Church.

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Parent dedication is a public commitment you make before God, your church, and your family. You express your desire, as parents, to lead & spiritually nurture your son in cooperation with the Holy Spirit, so he will develop a desire to love God and love others.

While it took us a long time to get in gear & get back into church, we are so thrilled with the church we now call home. There is nothing better than watching your child grow to love learning about the Lord & about all the bible stories that you have known since you were a child. While both Stephen & I feel knowledgeable in our faith, we definitely knew we needed to give Liam the opportunity to explore & learn on his own. Plus, he was beginning to ask questions & seek answers that I honestly didn’t feel adequate to answer on my own. We felt the best thing we could give him was this solid foundation to grown upon, but we also needed to lead by example. It has definitely been great for us as a family ❤

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Standing before the congregation with Pastor Mike….introducing our family & all praying together.

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“For this boy I prayed, and the Lord has given me my petition which I asked of Him. So I have also dedicated him to the Lord; as long as he lives he is dedicated to the Lord.”

1 Samuel 1: 27-28

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It was a very special & meaningful morning for our family ❤

Until next time,

Script Signature

February 2016, Latest & Greatest News

Our Happy Valentine’s {Recap}

Last weekend was such a fun-filled weekend for us. We hope you all had a lovely (total pun intended) Valentine’s Day, as well! ❤

Hop on over HERE for a look back on last year’s festivities, as well as previous year’s photos of this sweet day.

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Our fun began on Friday, as little man had his Valentine’s party at school. He was super excited for this. Party days always mean fun treats for all friends, and we were bringing special plates & napkins to share this time 🙂

I tried to get him to wear his Valentine’s shirt from the previous 2 years but he was NOT having it. When I showed him the shirt with the heart & the truck (see last year’s pics) and told him he would still fit into it….he said ‘No’ 😦 …this mama was sad. Not gonna lie. He basically said the shirt was for babies and his friends weren’t going to have shirts like that. Sooo, while I can still get him to humor me with the holiday shirts, I got him an updated, more ‘big boy’ shirt to wear this year 🙂

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We are big into coloring right now & all things crayon, so we made these super cool heart-shaped crayons to give out to his classmates for Valentines. I wrote about it over on Orlando Moms Blog 🙂 …Liam even did extra work this year and signed all his cards!

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Party time at school!

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My boys surprised me with flowers ❤ …Liam picked them out all by himself!

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Checking out his valentines from his friends. We made a box for the 1st time this year that he had brought to school so he could have a place to put all the cards in. It was a lot of fun decorating it together….although, he did get distracted a bit in the process. HA!

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An awesome surprise arrived in the mail from his Pepe Murphy….a personalized Valentine’s book. LOVE IT! I always had wanted to make one of these for him. Such a cool idea.

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While Daddy worked on Saturday, we made cupcakes. Someone couldn’t wait to get his hands on them.

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Always being silly 🙂 ….even when I was trying to get a nice, smiling photo of the two of us to show off our finished products. I have to tell you that he chose to eat a cupcake with NO frosting. What?!?! …complete nonsense.

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This cutie was waiting for me Valentine’s morning. I love that Daddy helped him to work so hard to write everything out himself. Liam hand-picked the card, too. ❤

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We let him choose where he wanted to go for a family Valentine’s Day brunch after church….he chose Golden Corral because of the chocolate fountain (i’m totally not kidding….his words). Hahahaha!!! Gotta luv it! ❤

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Our weekend was filled with many smiles and a whole lotta love. Wouldn’t have it any other way. Hope yours was, too!

Until next time, friends!

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February 2016, Latest & Greatest News

4.5 Years — Oh My!!

Wasn’t it just yesterday that I was posting about how much fun we had at little man’s 4th birthday party? How are we already half way to 5?!?! Ya know that saying….”The Days Are Long, but the Years Are Short“? …well, it’s SO true! Don’t.Blink.

Keeping up with our photo tradition, here’s the latest of Liam with his teddy bear. You can catch up on all our previous monthly/yearly updates HERE.

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AGE: 4.5 years // 54 months

WEIGHT: approx. 42.6 lbs. (he was 41 lbs. at his 4 year check up)

HEIGHT: 42 1/4 inches – or – 3 ft. 5 1/4 inches (he’s grown an inch 1/4 since his 4 year check up at the end of August….WOW!!)

CLOTHES: We stayed pretty steady all of last year in 4T but I would say we are pretty strong into a growth spurt now & are quickly growing out of that size. I am now buying all  “big boy” size 5 or size XS. No more toddler clothes! He also just moved up a size in shoes and is now in size 11.5.

FAV FOODS: if we could buy stock in Publix popcorn chicken, we would. That’s a definite ‘go-to’ on days when we are short on time and he is a HUGE fan. He tends to be more of a snacker or likes smaller meals. He likes cereal, mandarin oranges, bananas, cheeze-its, cheese, and peanut butter sandwiches.

FAV WORDS/PHRASES: I should log a journal for all the hilarious things this little man says to Stephen and me. Seriously, some of comments that come out of his mouth are unbelievable. He really has the best sense of humor! If he sees we’re upset about something, he’ll say, “you get what you get and you don’t get upset“. Yes, admittedly it’s a sassy response & one that he most likely heard from a friend at school, but the 1st time he said it, I laughed so hard. It was SO unexpected. When he gets mad at us, he says “I’m not your friend anymore“, and likewise when he really wants you to do something for him, he says “Please, I’ll be your friend“. Ah, such persuasion.

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FAV ACTIVITIES: We recently re-modeled the office/playroom, so he loves to play in there with all of his Imaginext toys, superheros and cars. Watching & listening to his imaginary play is something I could do for hours, and of course, it’s super fun to join in & play with him. He also LOVES to listen to music and sing and dance. I still say he’s going to grow up and do something in the arts. His teachers at school say he was Latin rhythm and ask us where he gets it…HILARIOUS!!

DISLIKES: There’s not too much this little dude doesn’t enjoy. Since Pre-K started, I guess you could say he has not been the biggest fan of doing the structured writing activities and learning to write, in general. In a way, I don’t blame him, as I was kinda on the fence for how much is expected of our little 4 year olds, but I didn’t want him to fall behind. We encouraged him and have been careful to not push him…and, I’m really happy to say that he’s made remarkable grown since August. He has learned so much and it’s crazy to see how much his handwriting is improving. Very proud of this boy! /// On another dislike note, I have to say that this boy is JUST like his mama and completely dislikes waking up in the mornings unless he wakes up on his own. Poor Stephen! haha!! 🙂

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As I began writing this post last week, FB showed me these gems in the memories feed that we’ve been graced with lately. I don’t know about you, but I am so enjoying these blasts from the past. Such sweet, sweet memories ❤

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This photo captures the heart of our sweet boy. His pure joy. He asked to pose like this after we did the regular teddy bear pic, and how could I say no?

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Happy Half Birthday, Little Man!! — Mommy & Daddy love you so VERY much!

Until next time friends,

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January 2016, Latest & Greatest News

Winter Break

Over the last few weeks, not only did we enjoy the Christmas & New Year holidays, but Liam & I also enjoyed some time off of school & work. I am fortunate to work for an amazing university that closes at the holidays so I pull little man out of daycare to hang out with me, too. We wish Daddy could pal around with us, but he’s got an important job to do …and at least, we had the weekends & after work to play 🙂

Liam had really enjoyed riding his new bike and getting used to this “big boy ride”. He was zooming around the sidewalk in no time.

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We hit up Sea World on Christmas weekend to check out their holiday decorations.  The park really looked festive! We spent a lot of time this season checking out Christmas decorations and lights at various venues, and just driving through local neighborhoods. So fun!! I think we found a new tradition that we’ll continue in years to come. All of us thoroughly enjoyed it.

At the time, we thought this was going to be our last visit before our annual passes expired, as well as Liam’s Preschool Pass….BUT, the park JUST announced this week that the Preschool Pass is returning for 2016 so we may be going back again. It’s such a great deal 🙂

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One of things we were most excited to see this visit was the holiday update to the Wild Artic ride — for Christmas, it becomes The Polar Express Experience! This is one of Liam’s most favorite Christmas movies, and he was over the moon to see this 🙂 …it was such a cool ride! You really felt like you were on the train & in the movie.

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Watching  a clip of the movie before we “boarded”….

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All smiles & ready to do it again….

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New Year’s week, my Orlando Mom’s Blog team gave us the awesome opportunity to hang out at the Science Center for the afternoon. We had let our annual passes lapse over the summer, so it had been almost 6 months since we last visited. It was so fun to see my team members from OMB, and we also hung out with Aunt Heather & cousin Sierra. Such a fun afternoon. I literally had to drag Liam out of there after FIVE hours! 🙂 …this mama was wore out!

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We were thrilled to see the new additions to the Nature Works exhibit. The fish tanks are beautiful, and the kiddos loved picking up the different star fish and examining them. What a great experience for sensory learning!

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New Year’s Day, we took little dude to the local carnival. He had been asking & asking to go, so we caved. This same one comes around at the holidays each year, and honestly, it was surprising that Stephen & I had never been to it, ourselves, in the past. It was super fun!

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Can you tell that Liam is used to me taking pictures? 🙂 …cheese!!

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quick selfie while little man was driving a tractor in the background…ha!

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these two….driving bumper cars!

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We met up with Aunt Heather & cousin, Sierra again…these kiddos love hanging out together. I can only imagine what this pic will look like in about 12 years from now…when they REALLY want to take the car for a drive together . Lord help us! 🙂

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baby teacups!

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Seriously, this Ferris Wheel was GINORMOUS!! …My people rode it. I did NOT. I was freaking out while they rode it. Too big & too high for me. Liam loved it (of course!).

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It was a fun & restful break from work & school. I was able to get some things done around the house that I needed to, and Liam enjoyed playing with his new Christmas presents. I do think he missed his friends from school, though, and the structure/routine that he’s used to. I know after a while we did 🙂 …haha!

Until next time, friends

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December 2015, Latest & Greatest News

Our Merry Christmas

Our Christmas was filled with so much love & laughter. We could not have asked for a sweeter holiday. This little family of mine is blessed to have one another and those we love — both family & friends.

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On Christmas Eve, we kept things low key & hung out at home. Liam was hilarious because he took the iPad into his playhouse & watched Christmas cartoons while we were getting things ready for the day. You can’t see it in the picture, but he even had his crocs by the fireplace in there….so cute!

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We continued our tradition of baking cookies for Santa. For anyone who knows me, while I CAN cook & bake, I’m just not a huge fan & I’m all about shortcuts & time savers. So, yes, we did ready made cookies (aka, break & bake) again & I don’t feel bad about it. We have loads of fun decorating them after they bake 🙂 …Liam’s a big fan of sprinkles!

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Being silly while making food for the Santa’s reindeers

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Cheese! ….this is how we do winter in Florida….shorts & flip flops!

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It’s Santa Boo 🙂

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We went over to Mimi’s house for Christmas Eve dinner. Liam always enjoys running around (literally) with his cousin, Sierra. This was about a 2 second snap where they they both sat down together.

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When we got home, it was time to go out front & put the food on the lawn for the reindeer. This year, we did a mix of oatmeal, powdered sugar, and sprinkles 🙂

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At bedtime, of course, we put out cookies & milk for Santa. This year, we started a new tradition of leaving a magic key for Santa. Mr Elf had brought it one day for Liam, as he had been asking this year how Santa got in our house since we didn’t have a chimney (such a smart one, he is, right?!?!)

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As you can imagine, Liam was more excited than ever this for Christmas. He definitely did not want to go to sleep, but we reminded him that Santa wouldn’t come until he was asleep, so that helped. I think it was close to 10pm, when he finally drifted off. It was hilarious, though, because Daddy was up before the rest of us in the morning out of excitement to open presents and/or see little man’s excitement. Liam, though, is like his mama and loves his sleep. Thus, he slept in until about his normal wake up time & came out of his room at about 6am. When he did come out, he was wide-eyed to see the tree filled up! He came running into our room & said, “Hey guys, I made it onto the nice list!!” ….THAT was hilarious!

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Here’s a few pics of the morning. The one gift he had asked Santa for was a Bumble Bee Transformer, so he was excited to open that one up.

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Daniel Tiger!

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His face in this picture was hilarious. At some point in the month leading up to Christmas, he started to ask for the Star Wars Imaginext, and the Millennium Falcon….and mind you, he hasn’t really seen any of the movies. Daddy (being the Star Wars super fan he is) has been over joyed of little man’s interest in Star Wars. I’m not sure who was more excited when he opened the Millennium Falcon up…Daddy or Liam 🙂

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Liam had an awesome Christmas from all of his grandparents, too. He was so excited to get the Hot Wheels Ultimate Garage, Legos, a super-hero play set and a big boy bike!! I’m sure we’ll have tons more pics of him playing with all these in the weeks to come 🙂

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Happy Holiday wishes to you & yours, as well!

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