Dayla Turns 10

Dayla, you turned 10 this year. This feels so big; double digits. You are now more than halfway through your years and life at home with us. The years of your dad and I giving training and guidance are shorter now…and we need to open our hands more and more as you start to stretch your wings..and you sure do love stretching your wings!

However those are not the only reasons it feels so big. When you turned 10, something big happened with you, in you, too. This summer, right before your 10th birthday, your eyes opened in new way. You have always been very introspective, kind,and thoughtful beyond your years….but this summer you became even more so. You started to see things in people…your eyes opened to their needs and their hearts. You started to see that your parents are not always fighting against you; you started to see our point of view for what feels like the first time. You started to laugh at yourself; we laugh together at ourselves so much more and it feels so good to laugh.

This new set of glasses are amazing. It is like your already big heart grew 10x bigger. It is a gift to witness. It is a gift to be around. I can’t wait to see the woman that God continues to grow you to be.

For your 10th birthday I wracked my brain for a way to make it special. You were already going to have a big birthday party with 12 of your friends, but I wanted to think of special beyond that…something to make this birthday feel special beyond the other years. I mean, double digits is big! Then it dawned on me, something I can give that IS special: a photo shoot! So we put on our makeup and our matching white dresses and headed out to Iron Mountain to take photos together. Your first photo shoot. I was given the gift of capturing how beautiful you are on the outside (I wish I could capture how beautiful you are on the inside too..but that is a gift that remains yours to give to those who know you well)

It was such fun. And when we were done, we headed to a Starbucks to spend that gift card your Aunt Kristy gave you. We had treats, relaxed in the sun, chatted about all things, and laughed a lot.

When we came home I let you paint your finger nails for the first time. You opened your gifts: the most amazing set of pens from Nana and Grandpa, a mermaid tale from us, and beanie boos from Grandma and Papa. Then Daddy took you to Poway Lake. You read and relaxed with him too (being quiet and mellow has always been more your thing) and then headed to a special sushi dinner. It was pretty much the perfect day for me and Daddy (and I think you too!)

Daddy and I both love you so much Dayla. We are so proud of you and the woman God continues to grow you to be. Happy 10th Birthday!

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Northern California Cousins Visit

We don’t get much time with the Northern Californian cousins and it always makes me a little sad, but I know that is life.

BUT…Suzanne’s family came to visit Southern California and we got to spend and few hours with them!! Seeing all the cousins get along…that makes me so so so happy! It was a short but SWEET time.

(I didn’t get pictures of the girls because they were off booggie boarding in the waves!)

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Work Trip

Every year Daniel has to take a work trip for about 10 days in August.  Every year it makes me:

1. Glad he doesn’t have to travel all the time for work

2. Glad to be married

 

This year I did something I have never done before.  I decided to take Grandma and Daddy’s approach they take when I am gone which is this: “Be so busy and have so much fun we barely notice you are missing”

I am not someone who likes to be busy…but I think this was by far the best year yet. The strategy totally worked.  The kids had a blast (which means less meltdowns which means less time-outs which means a less tired mom!) and since I scheduled in 3 overnights for them…I got some adult time and even some alone time (win-win!).  It was amazing.   Here are the highlights from our time…

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Dorothy

Dorothy is an amazing neighbor friend to have around and I love summers when she is off work and we get to hang out!!

A couple days ago she taught the boys what burpees were and how to do a cartwheel. Today she taught August to catch a baseball….I love it!

This post is for you Dorothy! Thanks for teaching my boys all the cool stuff!

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Children’s Art Exhibit in Balboa Park

Two years ago Dayla had the extreme honor of being submitted (chosen by her teacher to be the one entry for her grade level) and then CHOSEN (by a panel of judges who work for the San Diego Museum of Art) to have her art exhibited in an real art museum in Balboa Park. So you can imagine our surprise when it happened AGAIN this year!

This year Dayla’s art teacher submitted a collaborative project this year to represent the 3rd grade class submission. Of all the 6 grades from Garden Road that were submitted this year, the 3rd grade submission was the only one that won! We were all so excited!

Daniel and Dayla took a date night to go the the “Artist’s Reception”. The theme for the Children’s Art Exhibition this year is “Beyond the Ordinary”. Dayla’s contribution is the cupcake on the bottom right with the purple background. All the cupcakes were made using a tearing technique and magazine photos.

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What an amazing honor to have your art in a museum! We are so proud of our artist!

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Boys Camp-out

A few years ago Daniel and his guy friends were challenged by the idea of making sure their kids are influenced by other Godly men besides their own dads. They came up with the idea of having a Father-Son camp-out once a year.

This year was the first year that the boys were all old enough to make it happen and we are excited to report that it was a huge success! There was bike riding, fishing, hiking, a dance party at night, and lots of boy time. 🙂

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August

This little guy is a monster on the scooter.  He is all courage and no fear.  Yet, what I love about him is that he is also all smiles and all snuggles and all sweet.  Sometimes when I put him down for nap he will reach up his arms, give me the biggest hug around my neck and say, “I want to keep you forever.”

I can’t imagine life without our littlest man and thank God for him every day.