Sunday, July 29, 2012

A Special Meet Up on a Summer Night

When you are young you have lots of friends and you make plans like going to college together and dreaming what it will be like one day when you are adults. For most of us, those plans never work out the way we thought they would. God has a different path for our lives. Yet, those special friendships we have been blessed with have a way of spanning time and distance.

I was so lucky last night to meet up with one of my very best friends from Middle School on ... the girl who stood beside me almost 22 years ago when I said "I Do" to the love of my life. My beautiful friend who has fought a hard battle against breast cancer this year.

After not seeing each other for ten years we were able to make plans to meet up last night at Stone Mountain Park to have dinner on the VIP Terrace and watch the laser light show. You know a true friend when you can sit down after not seeing each other in ten years and pick up a conversation as if it had only been a few days since you had seen each other last. {Of course, some of that is thanks to Facebook and being able to keep up with each others lives.}

Loved watching our kids play together ... thankfully, they have girls who love dance and, like my girls, the world is their stage so having a dance competition before the show started was just par for the course.

It was such a fun evening ... and even Ava Mae {who for some reason only remembered that the laser show had a bunch of commercials and wondered why we would invite out of town friends to such a boring show} had a good time. It seemed like the night ended way too soon and we were saying our good-byes once again. This time though, we promised each other it would not be another 10 years!

Saturday, July 28, 2012

Baseball : End of Season Party

Hard to believe in two weeks Devin has tryouts for fall baseball. It truly has become a year round sport for him. On Thursday night we wrapped up the summer all-star team season with a party. The boys had requested a home run derby - so we decided a cookout next to one of the smaller baseball fields in our park would be perfect {smaller field to up the chances of "home runs"}.

My husband did a good job with handing out trophies by talking about each boy and why they were selected to be on the team and about their season.

Devin moves up to the Bronco league this fall so we will leave some of these boys behind for at least a year but, others we will enjoy seeing on the fields again in just a few short weeks.

Saturday, July 21, 2012

Day Trip'in ... Summer Fun

After a June that had us staying put due to ballet and baseball - the past two weekends we have enjoyed day trips in the North Georgia mountains.  Last weekend we went tubing with our Sunday School class in Helen. It was, for the most part, quite relaxing and enjoyable! Even our dog, Maggie, got in on the fun. Everyone slept well that night ... two hours on an icy cold river can wear you out. Only two pictures on the river {thanks to my friend Amanda Craig for purchasing them for us!} taken by the tubing company. Ava Mae said next time we need to bring along a waterproof camera.

This weekend we took the Blue Ridge Scenic Railway up to Tennessee.

We rolled along the Toccoa River - through beautiful scenery.

When we weren't looking at the beautiful views - the kids enjoyed exploring the train. The train was really large - lots of cars to explore, even a snack bar car.

We even ran into some interesting characters on the train - including, Santa Claus - apparently he is on vacation.  The train conductor was so nice and chatted with the kids before punching our tickets with his star punch. He heard it was almost Devin's birthday and got our whole train car to sing "Happy Birthday" to him.

When we arrived at our destination it was pouring down rain but, we waited it out for about 15 minutes and then we were off to explore the quaint little towns on both the Georgia and Tennessee side of the state line.

Ava Mae and Devin enjoyed being in two states at once.

After lunch and a little shopping it was time to reboard for the one hour trip back to Blue Ridge.

Hoping to do this trip again some day ... during the peak Fall foliage would be beautiful!

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

It's That Time of Year ...

... time to finish packing away all remnants of last year's schooling and begin reorganizing our shelves with new school books, supplies, and lesson plans.

This year I had a little more planning to do as I was recently asked to take over leadership of our homeschool support group at our church, along with my friend Rena. {So glad to have her along for the ride on this journey!} We have been frantically planning out meetings, speakers, filling out our leadership committee, and planning the retreat in January. Whew ... who knew how much work and thought went into our group. I did not appreciate our previous leader's enough!! Really looking forward to our first meeting in August and getting our school year off to a great start!

Yesterday, I was lucky to have 3 uninterrupted hours of planning time for our school year ... my daughter was back at her summer dance intensive studio for a 3 hour ballet class. So while my other two children took advantage of an indoor play area at McDonald's and with my iPad, laptop, and teacher's planning book - I worked on planning out the first half of our school year. Our first official day back is August 27th! Two days after we return from a week long beach vacation. Hopefully, I will have everything in place to make it a smooth transition back. Hard to believe but, even with the late start back we will be just a few days shy of 1/2 our year done before Christmas. {Love homeschooling calendars!} Lots to do in the coming weeks but, two of my children are in an all day camp next week and Lexi will dance for a few days - so more quiet time.

Have you started the planning process yet or are you still enjoying the lazy days of summer?

Thursday, July 12, 2012

Camp Crafty Girls {2012} ~ Day 3

Last day of Camp Crafty Girls 2012 ... what another super fun day! Our theme for today was "Team Spirit".  As we prepare for the Olympics to begin in a few weeks I thought it would be fun to make a few crafts to show our support for team USA. Little did I know how the girls would take this theme and run with it. :)

After finishing our scrapbooks, we then began work on our Red, White, and Blue Skirts for our American Girl Dolls {and a few stuffed animals}.

With the leftover scraps the girls crafted headbands, bracelets, and belts for their dolls. So creative!

Next, we were on to our "Crafting in the Kitchen" portion of camp. Today it was White Trash Candy - pretzels, m&m's, marshmallows, and melted white chocolate.

Our last craft ... Patriotic Bracelets.

{Pictured above is the youngest camper this year, at 4 1/2 years old, she kept up with the big girls. Abby is one talented little crafter!}

We wrapped camp up today with some singing ... courtesy of Ava Mae on her guitar. Then the girls had a fun gab session about their American Girl dolls and craft camp. I asked for everyone to share their favorite craft but, it seemed like it was hard to choose as most of the girls said "everything".

I am always exhausted at the end of Camp Crafty Girls but, it is so rewarding. Love hanging out with these girls for a few days and sharing with them my love of crafting. They are all so creative and so sweet!!

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Camp Crafty Girls {2012} ~ Day 2

Another great day at Camp Crafty Girls!! Just love all these girls ... such sweet hearts and they all get along so well. I am having just as much fun as they are! {Pictured above: One of the creative Camp Crafty Girl tshirts we made yesterday with bleach pens. Pictured below: A quick group shot at the end of camp today.}

Our craftiness today ...

{Canvases with Paper Piecing Flowers}

{Glass Pendant Necklaces}

{Frosting Roses on Cupcakes}

The girls continued to work on their Mini Books.

When we weren't crafting ... there was always some sort of ballet dancing going on probably because almost all of the girls in camp are also in ballet.

At lunch break the campers watch a fun 20 minute program called "Cake TV" it is about three girls who have their own craft television show. They love it!