Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Let's Start At the Very Beginning, A Very Good Place To Start

So, lots has happened since I left my blog hanging.  I'll be honest - I didn't feel like keeping up with it.  I love my blog and I love that I can go back and read all of the different stories I've written about but I needed a break.  I didn't have the energy or the desire.  In fact, I didn't take a lot of pictures this summer.  But, here is my attempt at catching you up on our summer adventures.  

First things first, we had the end of kindergarten for Hughes from Harbor View Elementary.  Hughes had a great year and learned a lot.  He's on the cusp of reading and is really good in math.  He loved being with his best friends in class and never complained once about going to school.  I'm really happy that the 7:20 start time is done and the new elementary school starts at 9:00 - woo hoo!

 Conley, Hughes and Hudson 

 Mom and Hughes

 Ms. Hunley, Hughes and Miss Rodgers

Next, we have Banks' end-of-the-year karate demonstration.  This kid loves karate and he did wonderful.  By this time we had already packed up our house and were living at Kent and Trina's for the last week of May.

 Mr. Reggie and Banks

 Mid-air kick by Banks!  Oh Yeah!

 Showing his certificate

Banks also had his trike-a-thon.  We had to borrow Lucius' bike because Banks' was already packed up.  He loved Lucius' bike because it made a really cool engine noise when you revved the handlebar grip.  

 Banks' leading the pack.

 Collins hopped on an Island School trike and tried to join the pack.

 Banks' 4K class at The Island School

Then, we had Hughes' baseball party.  Hughes has been with the same boys for three years and the same coach.  Coach Rod always had a tender voice and gentle guidance for Hughes.  Hughes loves Coach Rod .
 Hanging with some of the baseball players - Wyatt and William

 Coach Rod gave a speech about every boy before handing them their trophy.  He actually teared up with Hughes and said he was going to miss him terribly.  Of course, that made me tear up.  This team has been a great experience for all of us.

Then, school ended and the boys and I moved to St. Matthews to live with BecBec for the summer while David stayed with Kent and Trina and worked part-time at MUSC and took a bar review course.  We didn't see a lot of David but hopefully it was all worth it.  He took the bar at the end of July.  We'll find out in October if he passed the bar.  It was a long summer with three little boys, not a lot of their toys, and, oh yeah, BecBec's upstairs air conditioning broke.  

The first week of June, Hughes and I were off to Mom and Me Camp at Camp Greenville.  Banks and Collins stayed with BecBec.  We had a great time and it was nice and cool in the mtns.  We again went with Ashley and Grayson and met up with a lot of other Charleston/Clemson friends.  It was great to get away with just Hughes.  

 He's growing up so fast and has all of these ideas and questions in his head.  It was nice to talk to him uninterrupted for three days.  He has a very gentle soul and he makes me proud.

 Playing cards in the cabin.

 Ashley and I before we zip-lined.

 Before canoeing - Hughes had me paddling all over the lake.

 A little rock climbing

 Hiking - that water was like ice

 Hughes' favorite activity - archery.  He loved it and would have done it more if possible.

 Another favorite activity - horseback riding.  

 Mom & Me Campers 2012

Hughes with the counselors

 His award at the end of the camp - Sharp Shooter for Archery!  He did really well with his aim.
We loved the camp and next year Hughes will go for the week by himself and Banks and I will go to Mom & Me Camp. 

We came back from camp and had Vacation Bible School at St. Paul UMC.  The boys loved it and then we were off to Pawley's Island for the week with G-Daddy and Dawa.  David was able to join us for a few days.   

 Collins loved the beach and got very brave towards the end of running into the water and letting the waves crash at his feet.  Unfortunately, this continued the rest of the summer and his bravery had no end.  He would walk to his watery death if it weren't for me grabbing him up at the last possible second before a giant wave took him out.

 The brothers

 Trying again - well, actually, I tried another 7 times but this was the best I got.

 Watching his brothers boogie board.

 The boys ruled the waves this summer.  

 Collins(1), Kate(5), Hughes(6), Banks(4), and Charlotte(2)

 The one picture with me in it.  Unfortunately, David got in zero but he was there for a few days.

After our beach week, Mom and I headed to the DC area to find us a house.  We looked for three days and then decided that the 2nd house we saw was the right fit for us.  We stayed in a hotel that I never want to stay in again, ate a lot of greek food, listened to a lot of talk radio, and found the outlets on the way back.  It was fun to just get away with Mom without the kids - sorry about the accomodations, Mom!  Next time, I promise to do better with my research!

The boys did have a few days at Camp Dawa.  I think they were spoiled rotten and came back with lots of new toys, backpacks, dinosaur flip flops, etc.  They loved it and I loved the break!  Thanks Dawa!

After the bar, we got to enjoy the creekhouse for a few days as a family.  He took the big boys swimming in the creek about 30 seconds before it started raining.  I, of course, was not about to get in that water.  I prefer chlorine water or at the very least water I can see in.

Then, it started thundering too and everybody ran for the house.  

We had a nice summer in St. Matthews.  Mom and I got to clean out several rooms and the garage to get her ready for the church yardsale.  Banks learned to ride his bike without training wheels.  He came downstairs one morning and told me he wanted me to take his training wheels off so I did.  He did great on his first run but then got scared and asked me to put them back on so I did.  After lunch he asked me again to take them off and I explained to him that once I took them off then I was not going to put them back on again.  He understood and has never looked back since.  He took to it like a fish to water.  It then lit the fire under Hughes to practice more and before the end of the day, they were both riding up and down Mom's driveway, and around Clancee and Mrs. Ann's driveways.

I also need to mention my favorite St. Matthews' babysitters - Anna Banks and Emma.  They were great!  They helped me tremendously on adventures to the movies, lunch dates, and just playing around the house.  The boys loved "the girls" as they refer to them.

So, there is our summer in a nutshell.  We swam, we watched movies, we hung with family and friends and we chilled.  That was me and the boys.  David studied, worked, stressed, and studied some more.  We missed him terribly but I knew he was doing it for the family and for our future.  I have a great husband whose dedication and focus know no end.  But, man, am I glad the bar is done :)

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