Sunday, July 13, 2014

Saddest Play Date Ever

I met up with friends at the Children's Museum for a farewell play date.  All three of our families have lived in Winston-Salem for many years and all left at the same time.  Our kids have grown up together and loved each other.  While I am only moving two hours away and can come back to Winston-Salem to see the rest of my friends often, these friends are moving to places I have to travel to by plane.   It was the saddest play date I ever had.  I will miss Janine and Ashley and appreciate their friendship.

39 Intentional Acts of Kindness

This is the third year that I have participated in the Birthday Project.  I was inspired by a post on this blog.  The plan was to do one act of kindness for each year of my life.  Some were for my family, some for strangers, some were for friends.  None were expensive or life changing.  Just small little purposeful acts of kindness. My parents came down and the 7 of us went around Charlotte and Indian Land in an attempt to bless our new community with 39 intentional acts of kindness.  I did not get to take pictures of each act of kindness, but kept a list here.  In the past I have chosen not to really blog about what we are doing, because I did not want to appear that we were bragging, and I really dislike pictures of myself.  However, I decided this year, that I wanted to record it, so that when my children turn 39, they could remember how their mother chose to spend her birthday in gratitude for the beautiful life that Heavenly Father has given her.  Here is our list and pics.   :) 

************ Make sure you check out what happened to us after #36.  It was awesome! 

1-Made cookies for my children, so they would not feel sad about all the ones we gave away. 

2-We left bubbles at our apartment's playground.

3-The boys vacuumed my van.

4-We left a new inflatable toy at our apartment's pool in hopes some little kid would find it.

5-We bought school supplies for the fill the bus campaign at Chad's work.

6-We brought cookies to the main office of our apartment. 

7-We saw a man moving in to our apartments and gave him cookies and offered to carry boxes.

8-I was born in Charlotte and wanted to do something at the place where I was born. We brought flowers to the nurses at Presbyterian Hospital. 

9- I also brought board books to a new mom at the hospital.

10-We left a boy coloring book and crayons in a waiting area.

11-We left a girl coloring book and crayons in a different waiting area.

12-We left a word search book and pen in a third waiting room. 

13- We paid parking for the person behind us at the hospital. 

14-We left a Book of Mormon at the restaurant where we ate lunch.  (In honor of my little missionary sister who could not be here to celebrate with us). 

15-I left a copy of my very favorite book, The Hiding Place by Corrie Ten Boom, at a new neighbor's house who has been very friendly to me. 

16-We left bubbles at our new home's playground

17-A second bottle of bubbles to new playground

18- A hula hoop to new playground at our new home

19-We left popcorn on a Redbox at Walgreens.

20-We left popcorn at a Redbox at Harris Teeter.

21-We took carts back for shoppers at Harris Teeter.

22-We took cookies to the Indian Land EMS department.

23-We left popcorn at Redbox at a Publix.

24-26-We added quarters to 3 shopping carts at Aldi.  

27-28- We left popcorn at two Redbox machines in Walmart.

29-Left quarters at a drink machine

30-32-Left quarters for games at 3 video games.

33-The children put coins in a children's hospital donation jar.

34-We circled the parking lot at Target until we saw a pregnant woman and gave her flowers.  

35-We took a cart back at Target for someone. 

36-We gave stickers to a little girl at dinner. *************************

37-Left a very large tip to our waitress after dinner.

38-Gave cookies to our upstairs neighbors who are our first new friends we have made here.  

39-I took my kiddos to the pool, even though it was way past their bedtime and had a great time playing ball with all of us.  Started and ended the day serving my most precious treasures.

****At dinner, we gave a little girl stickers to play with while she waited for her food.  The little girl colored a picture and brought it to me as she and her mom left the restaurant.  When our meal was finished, the waitress told us that the mom of the little girl we gave stickers to, had paid for dinner for our entire large group.  It was a very touching and sweet act of kindness.  

Thank you to my parents who joined us on our adventures!  I love you! 

And thank you to my super sweet children and amazing hubby who spoiled me rotten this weekend!  I am grateful for all of you!

Fun Around Our New Town

We have had a fun time exploring our new area.  Here are just a few random pics from the last few weeks.  

We got a pass to Discovery Place, so anyone who wants to go with us, let us know! 

Don't you love Ryan's new sense of style.  He picked out this hat and wears it whenever he wants to be cool.

Molly was super brave on the rope bridge, but was not quite so sure about taking her picture with Iron Man.

The boys really wanted to go to a space themed game show activity at the Discovery Place museum.  There were about 50 kiddos in the audience.  The game show host.  Chose Andrew out of the audience first.  Then a little girl.  Ryan wanted to be picked so badly, but I knew there was no way the guy was going to pick Ryan out of the audience, when he had just picked Andrew.  But HE DID!  Ryan was so excited.  Andrew and Ryan answered all of the questions without needing any life lines or on most cases any of the multiple choice options.  The host was pretty impressed with Ryan when he knew the name of the constellation Leo. There was a three way tie for first place, and the announcer told the kids he had never had a group where all of the kids answered all of the questions correctly.  The boys were very excited!  At the end the host pulled out a bucket of sticker tattoos as prizes.  Ryan reached in and grabbed one for himself and his sister.  Andrew politely and seriously replied that he would not like one because he did not believe in tattoos.  Love these sweet kiddos and their individual personalities.

We have spent a lot of time at the libraries here.  I have to say, that the library system here ROCKS!  I thought I wanted a little library with a window seat in my dream house.  I have decided now that what I would really like is a house made out of books.  I wanted to climb in there with Molly so badly, but I was way too big!

My adventurous big boy who has outgrown playgrounds.  I remember when my friends and I all had little toddlers and we would take them to the park.  Oh how upset I would get at those irresponsible parents who let their big kids do dangerous things and run up and down the slides and through the tunnels with toddlers around.  What perspective time and experience give us.

We dressed like cows and went to Chick-fil-a for free food.  I jokingly dared Chad to go on his lunch break without me and the kiddos.  He accepted the dare.  I love this man!

We have 7-Elevens on every corner here, so of course we went to free slurpee day! Our kiddos had never had this sweet experience before.

We spend almost every night at the pool these days.  Molly has turned into quite the little fishy.  She is a way more advanced swimmer than either of her big brothers were at 5.

Saturday, July 5, 2014

5th Annual Fourth of July Parade and Picnic

We came back to Winston-Salem for our annual neighborhood Fourth of July Parade and Picnic.  This year, we did not host the parade and water games, our wonderful friends, the Thorntons took over those festivities.  The Campbells still hosted the picnic portion at their home.  We had a great time with family and friends, but to be honest, it was a little bittersweet to not be a host family any more.   It just made it seem even more real that we don't live there anymore.  However, the weather was so perfect and we were surrounded by so many people we love and cherish, that it was hard to stay melancholy for long.  Our children were in heaven being around their friends and cousins.  They have missed playing together so much. After resting up after the party, we headed out to Lewisville, my favorite place to watch the fireworks.