Here, There and Everywhere

It's hard to believe one week has come and gone since the big first day of preschool!  We are now officially "in the groove" and I'm starting to get the whole "my life is in my minivan" thing.  Good grief!  Maybe it's the half day component of preschool, but I swear I've spent more time driving in the last week than I have in the last month.  On Wednesday alone, I found myself at our Church 4 times throughout the day.  FOUR!  That's too many :) For anyone who cares to know, I figured out that I buckled and un-buckled kids from their car seats 12 times that day.  Yes, 12.  This Mom will be singing the Hallelujah Chorus on the day that my children learn to get in and out of the car on their own...
In addition to school starting, we had three soccer games last week and registration night for Awana.  A sweet Dad snapped this pic of the kids and I on a particularly windy night that left us all a little chilled.  We are having such a fun time on the sidelines, cheering for the soccer boys and having lots of adventures.  The weather has been perfect, but just this week it turned quite chilly and suddenly I'm having to throw extra blankets, sweatshirts and coats in the van so I'm prepared for all sorts of game day conditions!  
Last week I managed to just get us all where we needed to be, all the while figuring out what I need to do to maintain our new routine.  As I've gotten older, I've come to realize some personality driven preferences of mine that sometimes make me feel like the oddball that I must be.  I love people and I love to spend time with friends, but truly I am a homebody, an introvert even who loves quiet days at home with my people, in our cozy home.  I like slow mornings with coffee and jammies and lots of opportunity for playing.  When I was a nanny, I was an on-the-go gal, always looking for activities to do and places to go.  But now that I've become a Mom, I look for more activities to get out of and more reasons to be home!  Ha! I actually think that has to do with our life becoming more public and therefore a greater need for home to be our safe place.  Anyway, all that to say, three days of morning preschool has been a big shock to MY system.  A shock I know I need to get used to, seeing as how my children insist on growing up, but a shock nonetheless.  I'm adjusting but don't think I'm not mourning those quiet days gone by just a little bit....
Ava on the other hand, has really not missed a beat.  She is LOVING "sunshine preschool" and has taken all of this change in stride.  She is definitely more tired than normal, which has translated into some naps on school days, a welcome addition to our afternoons.  Soccer and preschool have been exciting activities on her social calendar and each day she wakes up to ask me, "What is it today and what do we do next??"  

With all the hustle and bustle of last week, Travis suggested we head out to our favorite little campground on Friday night for a little bonfire and park play.  We went to a pasta dinner with his team and then surprised the kids with a drive into the country.  They are growing to LOVE this little family activity and as we got closer to the campground, Ava told us "I'm so esscited!!! I love when we do this!"  If we had a backyard we would likely be doing this kind of thing at home, but since we share a yard with our condo friends, this 10 minute escape from home has become a little haven for all of us.  It's a quiet campground and we always seem to find an empty campsite near their favorite playground.  
It was one of those picture perfect Fall nights.  Warm, but chilly enough for a sweatshirt and a fire to keep us cozy.  Carter was all about helping his Daddy with the fire...
 ... as was his sister.  Just so no one panics over this picture, Travis was literally right beside Carter and I was only a few feet away too.  Safety first people, safety first!  
 Once we got our fire ready the kids did some playing with some other kids at the playground, and Carter did some golfing...
... and I made sure the smores were good enough to eat.  It was a burden, but someone had to test them out!
Ava approved.
As did Carter!
I managed to get a little knitting in as the sun went down.  Do you like my purple finger nail that matches my purple knitting needle??  I didn't pick up on that until I uploaded that photo :) 
 This was right after we played hide and seek tag, in the dark, with our giggling and screaming kiddos! They totally LOVED it and we were all doing some serious laughing by the time we were done.  It made me thankful that they will grow up with a youth Pastor Daddy and an arsenal of night games to enjoy.  I imagine we will host lots of late night parties at our house with their friends.  Ava and I will probably be in the house watching Carter and his friends do all sorts of dangerous things, worrying that someone will get hurt while Travis tells us that everything is fine :) 
I'm pretty certain that is exactly how that will go down!  
Such a terrible quailty pic, but a sweet moment to remember. 
 Love my babies and love these fun nights together.
 On Saturday we had another soccer game and then a surprise dinner date with my sister and brother in law!  They were in town to do a little shopping so we were able to meet up with them and enjoy some time together.  The kids were wild, especially Carter, which made for an entertaining/exhausting night.  The upside was being able to catch up a little with Dave and Jennie while also using a gift card we'd recently won.   My sister is expecting her first baby in February so we have lots of fun in store this year and next!  And Ava and Carter have the addition of a new cousin to look forward to!  
 Yesterday it was back to the grind of another week and this time I drove these two friends in our newly formed carpool.  I swear they skipped and giggled and held hands the whole way in to school!  
 Carter and I spent a morning out together running errands and enjoying a little Starbucks treat.  We made it through drop off and pick-up with no tears this week, just a repeated refrain of "NOW can we go get Ava, Mom??"  He definitely missed her but he's getting used to our new routine.  When we're out, it's honestly over so quickly!  There isn't a ton of time to get much done, but just enough for an errand or two with a quick stop at the park.  On Tuesdays I get to stay home and I can already tell I will love that so much!  Jammies and coffee here I come...

So there you go, one week down and a million more to go.  You can find us here, there and everywhere these days, but as often as I can help it, nowhere is the place I want to be.  I hope you are enjoying this amazing September weather in your neck of the woods.  It's a beautiful time of the year to behold the glory of God all around us... Enjoy your week!

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