Wednesday, August 22, 2018

July 2018 Family Update

This is the month mommy went back to work FULL-TIME, outside the home ;).  I have been considering going back full-time for a year now, off and on.  I began graduate school a few years ago with the intention of going into administration (and I may one day) but during my schooling my vision for making change in the school system shifted to wanting to work more directly with teachers.  Teachers are the saints of our public school system!  One way for me to directly impact student learning is through teachers, so I decided my next step should be in some type of coaching position.  Well, an amazing opportunity came up that I couldn't let pass by.  I applied and by the grace of God, was hired!  I'm one of three Early Learning Partners in the school system.  The position is in a the newly designed Office of Early Learning where we will be working to support teachers in the early grades whether that's classroom support, professional development, and other areas.  This school year I'll be working with the kindergarten teachers at 8 different school with the intention of adding other early grades on each year.  Cool, right??  So far the work has just been incredible and my teammates have been the best kind of support at work.

The transition, however, has been hard.  July is the hardest month at the hospital for Jimmy because it's essentially the mark of a "new year" with new students, residents, etc.  Finding a quality full-time daycare that had spots for BOTH of my little ones was quite the journey.  Let's just say there were lots of tours, phone calls, tears, and the whole spectrum of emotions.  I was so grateful to find out Wesley and Anna Ruth were placed in the best place we could have hope for...they are so loved and we LOVE getting the daily updates.  Wesley has had a more difficult time with it than Anna Ruth, but he's making friends and loving his teachers.  Grace is still on summer break so it hasn't fully hit her, yet.

THANK YOU to everyone who has prayed for us through this journey.  Thank you Rachel for going out of your way to literally make a meal in our kitchen and have it waiting on us when we arrived!  Thank you to so many other friends that have welcomed Grace into their home since we had no other place for her to go.  Thank you to Wesley's teacher that called me at work to check on me when I had a hard time at drop off on day 2ish...let's just say he was crying and clinging to me while another teacher pulled him off of me...while I ran out the door crying.  God has placed us in a beautiful community and we do not take it for granted.

Jimmy and I are working to communicate better as we were struggling with the transition as well.  It's difficult getting home so late, having to make dinner, be patient with the kids, get them in bed, and then to have anything left for each other.  We are learning to be very clear with expectations and to support each other even when we don't feel like giving anything else.  We are learning that Jimmy is quite the chef ;)  Sharing cooking responsibilities, among others, has been nice.  Jimmy, thank you for supporting my passions of helping others even when it inconveniences our family, at times.

Ice cream stop 

Those eyes

Why didn't I think of this before?  I asked them if they wanted to ice skate on Clorox wipes in the kitchen.  

Anna Ruth saw her brother pee on a rock at the park and proceeded to copy.  Now she thinks she pees like a boy.  :)

4th of July Parade

4th of July picnic with team Kittner


Mary Ross's baby shower!  Too bad we didn't take a picture...or if we did, I just don't have it!

Happy birthday to Memere and Uncle Linton!

Skyping with Uncle Jordan

These two have quite the special connection...Anna Ruth and her Pepere are 2 peas in a pod.

I let the kids choose a baking activity the week before I went back to work.  Wesley chose ninja turtle whoopie pies, lol.

Grace chose owl cookies

Wesley at Children's museum camp with his buddy, Lorelei

We were at the park and Wesley had to pee.  I told him to go pee BEHIND the van so no one could see him.  He did, he stood behind my van and peed ON it.  I was so shocked I couldn't even get mad.  I guess I need to be more explicit with my instructions.

GSO science center, a favorite of ours

First day of mommy's job!

Our first day took place at the new BB&T Leadership Institute in GSO.  It was gorgeous!

Our little tree house

So, I do have an office cubicle but I won't be spending much time in it during the school year since I'll be traveling to 8 different schools.  BUT, I still wanted it to be cozy.  So, I gave it a makeover.

After: Thanks mom for helping me find coordinating parts from afar.  We were able to shop one weekend for pieces that all fit together.

My mom found this cute bulletin board that I was able to hang on one of my walls.

Can't remember where I found this idea but I LOVE having pictures in my office!

The first day of daycare required me preparing the night before...look at all this!

First week of work celebration!

Pool time

A girls weekend away with these 3 lovely ladies.  We have been best friends since college and here we are 10 years post-graduation!  It has become more difficult to get together but is still very important to us!

Almost all the Erskine girls together again!  Thank you everyone for making it happen.

Katie and I may have teamed up on Blair here in the middle a time or two, freshman year.  I may or may not have sprayed cinnamon scented air freshener in Blair's shower.  Katie may or may not have  helped us decorate Blair's car when it wasn't really her birthday to try and convince her, along with the help of many other willing participants, that it really was her birthday.  We love you, Blair!

My wonder woman and super girl.

Grace at her friend's tea party.  Thank you, Kim!!

Thursday, July 26, 2018

Family Beach Trip 2018

We took a family beach trip to Holden Beach, NC this year and the best part?  EVERYONE was able to come for most of the time.  We got to meet Miss Kelsey (my brother's girlfriend) for the first time which was lovely.  Everyone got nice doses of each other, we spent lots of time on the beach, we had great weather, we ate a lot of ice cream and yummy seafood, and we had great quality time together.  It was a great vacation!
We're here!

Uncle Jordan and Miss Kelsey brought Legos for the older kids.

Uncle Linton, helping out Grace

Uncle Jordan helping Grace boogie board

Miss Kelsey!

A yummy AND nasty game all at the same time.  It was fun, though :)

Lots of reading

The cute beach house

Jimmy and Anna Ruth

A great playground to explore with Memere and Pepere

That spicy little cute!

Our seafood night


Music time

Jimmy won the bocce ball tournament this year, again ;)

Lots of naps

A new splash pad that was next to the playground 

Family ice cream trip (Jordan and Kelsey had left for CA at this point)

Aunt Cindy reading with Anna Ruth

View from top balcony


Grace's's pretty epic!

Wesley boogie boarding