Friday, August 29, 2014

Oak Island | Beach Trip 2014

Earlier this month we packed our bags and beach chairs and headed down to the coast for a week of vacation. We rented a house with my parents, and my sister and brother in law for a full week and did a whole lot of nothing. It was nothing short of perfect. It was one of those weeks that left me aching for just a few more days of that salt air and ocean breeze, and I certainly wasn't ready to leave to come home.

The house we stayed in had this amazing porch on the ocean side with adirondack rocking chairs and a gorgeous view. Our days typically started and ended on the porch, and when we weren't on the porch, we were on the beach. Morning coffee, afternoon snacks, and late night ice cream were all enjoyed on the porch. In fact, I'm pretty sure we went the whole week and we probably watched less than 30 minutes of television. It was so nice to be outside and unplugged. I took three books with me, and started all three but didn't finish a single one. I was just content watching the world go by. There is something to be said for lazy days, and truly being where you are. Not worrying about what is at home waiting or what is happening in the coming weeks but living right then and there in the midst of it all. The coast does that to me- it has the power to make me forget it all and just breathe a little easier. It was one last sweet week of summer at the coast, and it was exactly what my soul needed.

Monday, August 25, 2014

Landon's 1st Day of Preschool

If there's anything I have learned since becoming a parent of a preschooler, its that the excitement of the first day never goes away. I never really anticipated feeling anxious or excited for Landon to go to school, but its almost like de ja vu all over again the night before. Just like I did as a kid, I toss and turn just the same. I go over my mental check list in my head making sure I haven't forgotten anything in his backpack or lunch box. I worry about oversleeping or allowing enough time for traffic and drop off. That excitement never goes away apparently, it just changes a little as you are the parent now instead of the student.

Last night was no different, and the morning of course didn't go as planned. Landon is a complete grinch in the morning and its always a struggle to get him up, feed him breakfast, and get him out the door without tears being shed by one or both of us. He simply doesn't do mornings well, and as much as I hate to admit it, he gets it from me. I already dread the day he is 15 and has a teenage attitude to back up his morning grouchy-ness. After battling over which shoes he wanted to wear, what he wanted for breakfast and the fact that it took forever for him to wake up, we made it out the door an to the preschool.

He actually agreed to let me take his picture on the steps out front, after fiercely refusing to take one in our front yard a mere 10 minutes prior. I have no idea what made him agreeable for those five minutes, but I took what I could get and actually got a couple decent pictures out of him before we headed in to his classroom. As soon as we hung up his backpack he realized what was going on and started tearing up and clinging to me for dear life. I would like to hope that one day he will confidently walk into the room and never turn back to look at me, but I'm just not sure that day will happen for him....not until he is a teenager and way too cool for mom. Never the less, we made the drop off/hand off and I rushed out the door to get to work on time.

This year Landon is in the same classroom he was in from January to May. Since he is still 2.5, he stays in the 2/3 year old class. We did switch him from Tuesday/Thursday to MWF classes, but he still has the same teacher, which I am so thankful for. I think the consistency is great for him for one more year and I think 3 days a week will hopefully get him more used to the schedule and environment.

I called later that morning to check on him, and of course he was doing great. And when I went to pick him up from the sitter's house she said all he could talk about was playing on the playground, coloring a picture, and lining up in the hallway to go outside. He had the best day and was all smiles all afternoon.

It may have been a rough start, but day one of preschool is in the books and I will declare it a success.

Saturday, August 23, 2014

a little update and house progress

How in the world is it already time for kids to go back to school? This summer has absolutely flown by and I am by no means ready for it to be over. It baffles me that college football starts in just over a week's time. While I love some college football, I'm so sad to see our summer go.

Last week we got back from a week at the beach. It was a perfect week, weather wise, and we loved our time there. It's always hard coming home from vacation and getting back into the swing of things- so this week has been pretty crazy. We spent the week at Oak Island, North Carolina with my side of the family. We've done several long weekend trips with them, but this was the first full week. It was great- lots of fishing, and digging in the sand, and sitting on the porch watching the world go by. I have tons more on our week at the beach, and of course tons of pictures to share. Once I work my way through them all I'll post about it a little more.

While we were at the beach, we officially started construction on our new house. We are SO excited to finally be building and I am counting down the days to when I can cook our first meal in the kitchen, or spend an evening sitting on our back porch. We have spent almost a year and a half planning and preparing for this, and have poured so much of ourselves into it- so its especially special to see it all come together. Our foundation is currently underway, and we hope to start framing in the next week or so with estimated move in in early December. Should make for an interesting but memorable holiday season :)

I have gone back and forth over how to share and document this process. I think in the world we live in on the internet, there is such a thing as oversharing- and so I want to document the process while trying to maintain a sense of privacy as well. If that is even possible. I'm not sure exactly what that looks like, and it may change as we get further into this process. However, I've said it again and I will say it now, this little space of mine is just that, mine. It is my memory keeper for my family- so it wouldn't be complete if I didn't share this journey of ours as we build our first home.

The week before we left for the beach we made a split second decision to move the house backwards on the lot about 30 feet. John spent several evenings out there scraping and clearing the new area so the work crew could start while we were at the beach digging the footings for the foundation. Do I sound like I know what I'm talking about? Because I don't. John has taught me all the language and terms and explained everything every. single. step. of the way. I am clueless when it comes to the construction of a home! Here's a few pictures of the progress so far.

Whoohoo! Our plan is to have it ready to be framed in a week- which I am so excited for. Our little house is coming along! :)

Sunday, August 3, 2014

the sweet spot of summer

It happens every. single. year. August rolls around, rumblings of football games are being heard and there is already less humidity in the air. We start thinking about fall wardrobes and preschool schedules and nearing the last day the pool is open. Every year, it seems like right about the time August gets here and fall is creeping in, we are just hitting the sweet spot of summer. We've fallen into our routines of warm summer evenings at the pool, and trips to the farmers market, and beach trips. We are soaking in the goodness of summer one sweet drop at a time. It always, always makes me a little sad. I love fall, I love all the goodness it brings, but I just want to hold on to dear life to summer and all it offers. Our summer has been beautiful, and full, and fun. We've lived it, and breathed it, and loved it.

This Saturday, we head to the beach for our week long vacation. I cannot wait for a few days to relax, and soak in the last days of summer in one of my favorite places ever. When we come back, we have just one short week until Landon starts preschool again and we get ready for fall. It's so hard to believe its already this late in the year! Fall may be just around the corner, but for now I think I'll soak in this sweet spot for just a little while longer. 

Saturday, August 2, 2014

Stone Mountain, NC

Last weekend my dad and I ventured up to Stone Mountain in North Carolina to do a little hiking and some photography. My dad is an avid outdoor photographer and its definitely not my strong suit, so I asked to tag along and learn some tricks from the pro himself.  Here's a couple of the shots I got of some waterfall areas.

It's not often that Dad and I get to spend time together without a crazy two year old running around or a lot of other people, so I enjoyed getting to hang out with him and share our love of photography. I'm thankful for a dad that I share common interests with!

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