Our Daily (G)races

Training to be the best wife, mom, runner, and person I can be each and every day....

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Aunt Kelsey is way cooler than mom

My sister Kelsey is a very cool mom.  She does very fun things with her kids all year long.  When we are here in the summer, my kids get to experience all the fun.  Two of the things we have done in the past two days would probably not happen at my house.

First, yesterday night the kids slept outside in a tent.  It was the perfect night for tent sleeping.  The projected forecast was 64 degrees and clear.  It actually got down to 57 degrees.   For July, that is crazy awesome weather!  It is just too hot for me to bother with tent sleeping in Texas.

Our cousin Meghan, who is also very adventurous, slept willingly in the tent with the kids.  The two little girls slept inside.  Maybe next year for Leah and Elena.

Then today Kelsey had all the supplies on hand to do human ice cream sundaes.  Now, we did not waste any ice cream during this process, but all the usual sundae toppings were put to good use.  We used caramel, chocolate sauce, sprinkles, and Redi Whip.  Oh, my they were sticky messes, but the giggles were contagious!  They only one a little unsure of the entire process was Elena.  She does not like to be too dirty so we could only put toppings on her arms and legs.  Everyone else was all in for the head.
The supplies

The before...all clean!

Maya and Emma



The cleanest one of the bunch.

After all the fun, we gave the kids a pioneer bath otherwise known as a bath with soap and the hose!

Good old fashioned fun!  Summer time with cousins is the best!

Sunday, July 28, 2013

Doing a little weaving

My mom weaves.  She is quite good at it in my opinion and has probably always wished Kelsey or I would learn.  Since being crafty is not my thing, all her hopes are with my kiddos.  Well, during the past two weeks her wish came true.  All seven kids....Emma, Jonah, Samuel, Elena, Maya, Hanna, and Leah learned how to weave.  It was quite the process of fun for everyone!

Samuel was very enthusiastic about the weaving!

Elena needed help because she could not reach the pedals.

After all seven kids were finished weaving their sections, this was the final product.

After some cutting, washing, and sewing by Mammy the final final product was seven pillows.  I think they look great and all the kids were thrilled to have their own personally made pillow!

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

USS North Carolina tour

Today we drove to Wilmington, NC so we could tour the USS North Carolina.  It is a battleship that served during WWII.  It was one of the first ships to arrive at Pearl Harbor after being attacked.  It was highly decorated by the end of the war.

The kids were super excited to see this ship.  They had no concept of how crazy large the ship would be...actually I don't think any of us did.  We were able to tour three decks below and up to the Captain's bridge.  We did not make it all the way to the front of the boat because of a thunderstorm. We also did not see everything below deck super thoroughly because it was HOT!  At some points some of us felt a little queasy because of the heat and the confined spaces.  How those men lived on this ship or any ship in such tight spaces is just amazing to me.  

This was the smallest gun on the ship and it still had to be manned by four people.

These were the medium sized guns.

These huge guns could shoot accurately 21 miles in the distance!

The kids liked spinning the door handles.

Tight sleeping spaces

Mammy and Pappy way up high waving at us.

Sitting at a dining table...notice the edges.

We dressed the kids in their North Carolina shirts.  The birth order number is on the back of the shirt.

They are just too cute and it made them much easier to keep track of while on the ship!

Just as we were finishing our tour a storm rolled in and it was a huge storm.  We had, of course, finished our below deck tour and we were on the second or third level up.  Most of us crawled into this tiny little space to wait out the crazy winds and rain!
Pouring rain

Taking cover

Kelsey, Scott, Maya, Hanna, and Leah

I would highly recommend touring a battleship if the opportunity arises.  It was a crazy awesome experience.  I would love to go back when it was cooler so the tour could be less rushed.  Just look at how sweaty gross we are.  Nicer weather would also have allowed for more pictures.  Still, it was lots of fun and very educational!

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Fun times at Atlantic Beach

Yesterday was our beach day.  It is tradition to go to Atlantic Beach at least once while in North Carolina.  The beach is generally not very crowded.  It is a big beach so there is plenty of space to relax and play.  The weather could not have been more perfect.  It was sunny and breezy!

Jonah loves, loves, loves to be in the water. He was probably in the water for all but 10 minutes. His favorite activity is to try to body surf.  Elena actually really enjoyed the waves this year.  By the time we left she thought she was big enough to jump without holding hands....maybe next year girlie!  Besides the surf, the kids love to dig in the sand and collect shells.

Jonah in a wave

Samuel in the water

Elena just loving life!

Emma helping Elena

Emma always wants to do a handstand at the beach...taking it is the tricky part!

Leah....just so cute!

Three hours later we forced the kids to leave.  I am pretty sure they would have stayed until dark.  
I think someone was ready to leave....