Tuesday, July 31, 2012

A Visitor From Australia!!

At the beginning of July, we had a very exciting visitor come stay with us for several days!  We had been looking forward to Alyssa's visit for quite a while.  Alyssa and Kris go way back!  She was about 4 years old when he first stayed with her and her family in Australia while he was on 6 week campaigns there with Harding.  She is 23 now.  He went back several times on campaigns there and then upon graduating from Harding went to Brisbane to live and work for 2 years.  So, Australia is just part of Kris' heart and so having Alyssa come to visit us while she was touring the U.S. for the first time, was very special for Kris--and our whole family!  I hadn't seen her since 2004 when Kris and I visited Australia.  It had been 5 or so years I think since Kris had seen her.  Anyway, we had a lot of fun showing her Little Rock and spending some fun times with her!

Now Alyssa, if you are reading this, don't kill me for this picture!  Ha!  On Friday after the kids last day of swimming lessons, we decided to go bowling.  None of us are the greatest bowlers but we are kind of competitive.  I think we had fun!  :)

After bowling we took her to Genghis Grill.  Then, she and Kris went to the movies while the kids and I met up with the Smiths and the Tappes for some yogurt/playtime.  The Smiths were in town for a few days and it was good to see them and catch up!  I joked with them that Kris was on a date with another girl!  Ha!

On Saturday we decided to go to Magic Springs!  We were excited about this!  We road a few kiddie rides first.  This one just about made me sick.  It was Layton's first ride and he wasn't too sure what to think at first.  I think once he saw us smiling and laughing and having fun with it, he realized it wasn't too bad and actually seemed to like it!

Layton and Kris on the little ferris wheel.

We spent quite a bit of time waiting in line for the Log Ride, but everyone seemed to like it!  I stayed back with Layton.

After that we ate and then the kids were dying to go to the water park.  Oh how I wish I couldn't have had my camera in there.  They absolutely had a blast.  They have some fun kid-sized slides and plenty of other things to do in the water.  They just loved it.  Layton went down slide after slide after slide.  The kids just love the water!!  We played for several hours and then headed home around supper time.

When we got home, Kris made his famous Macho Nachos.  Apparently he used to make these for his youth group a lot in Australia.

Sunday we went to church and then came home and I fixed a pork tenderloin, mashed potatoes and green bean bundles (I think if I remember right).  The funniest thing happened while I was cooking the potatoes.  I put them on to boil and Alyssa just thought I had cooked them to death and couldn't get over it.  Come to find out, they don't really make mashed potatoes like we do in the states.  So, she got to experience some real mashed potatoes.  It was so funny because she thought that I was ruining them!  Hehe!!

Sunday afternoon I met my parents in Arkadelphia for them to take the kids for several days.  I decided I would send Layton too this time.  I just really needed a break.  I was going to head to Texarkana Wednesday afternoon, so I thought he could handle it.  He did great and had no problems!  Anyway, that night Kris and I took Alyssa to Larry's Pizza.  It was something totally new for her.  She must have liked it okay because she recently put on facebook that she had some pizza for the first time in a while and all she could think about was how disappointed she was that it wasn't a baked potato pizza from Larry's!

Monday morning we said our goodbyes and I took Alyssa to the airport.  We thoroughly enjoyed spending time with her!!  She was SUPER with the kids and they loved her!  She was so sweet and  brought them all Build-A-Bears dressed in Aussie attire!  They love them!  Thanks so much, Alyssa, for coming and staying with us!  We can't wait for your next visit!!!

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Swimming Lessons!

A couple of weeks ago Hannah and Lincoln took swimming lessons for the first time.  We joined a pool this summer and they had lessons there for a really good price.  They were 5 days for 45 minutes each day and the kids really learned a lot.  They learned how to bob, blow bubbles out their noses, floating on their back, gliding, different kicks and arms, the breast stroke, the free style, and the back stroke.  It really was everything I was wanting them to learn.

Hannah working on her back stroke.

Lincoln doing the free style.

The last day they got to go in the deep end and jump off the diving board.  The kids were so excited about doing this.  Molly, the teacher, started out by having them jump to her, but it wasn't long before she moved out of the way and they were doing it completely on their own.  Yay!!  So, now when we go to the pool, they get to jump off the diving board all they want.  They love it!

Mr. Lincoln was so excited during the first lesson that he had a hard time staying on the steps while Molly was teaching the other kids one-on-one.  She had to keep telling him to sit down on the steps.  So, I came up with a solution.  I had gotten him this Star Wars Lego book at Sams a while back and had been waiting on the perfect time to give it to him.  He knew about it and was really wanting it.  So, I told him if he would obey and stay on the steps like he was supposed to, that he could have it on Friday.  Each day he and Hannah would get a little treat too just to keep him motivated.  It worked beautifully and I was really proud of him.  Showed me he CAN do it if he really wants to.  Stinker.  Anyway, I told him he should be really proud of himself as well because he did it!  I know it was hard for him.  When he gets excited, he has a hard time controlling himself sometimes.

I couldn't leave Hannah out, so she got this little needlepoint set that I got at Hobby Lobby for her to do this summer.

So, we have some little swimmers on our hands now which is really great!

Thursday, July 19, 2012

T-ball Wrap Up!

I am really late in sharing this, but I wanted to wrap up Lincoln's t-ball year.  He had a great time playing t-ball for the first time.  He was on the Razorbacks team and had a super coach in Coach Tommy.  We could see so much improvement in his playing by the end of the season and he really did have a lot of fun.

The way they play is that each player bats twice and they go through the line up for each inning.  So, they play 2 innings.  Some teams wanted to play with outs and others didn't.  It depended on the coach and how serious they were.  Lincoln was #1 so he usually batted first the first inning and last the last inning.  This meant that he always got to run the whole set of bases on his last at bat.  

This was the last game of the season.  Look at how much more serious he was compared to the first game.  He has his hands on his knees and he is paying attention.  At the beginning, he was more into kicking up dust.  Ha!  

I love how this guy runs.  He has such a long stride and he gets those arms a-going.  Ha!


I had to share this video of his best hit.  He hit it practically to the fence!!!

His coach gave him the game ball that day!  So cool!  He was so proud!

After one of their games, one of the moms brought water balloons and they had a very quick water balloon fight!

We had an end of the year party at our sponsor's house one Saturday.  They had an above the ground pool, a couple of bounce houses/slides, and a water slide.  The kids all had so much fun.

Layton jumping into the pool!

We had an awesome cupcake cake in honor of our team, the Razorbacks.

Coach Tommy got Matt, our sponsor (Alcoa Chiropractic), a plaque to go on his wall at his office.  Matt and his wife were super nice and great sponsors!

Then Coach Tommy presented each kid a trophy.  It was a baseball mitt and he put one of the balls they used to practice with in each one and signed each one telling them what a great year they had.  Awesome idea.

Lincoln could not wait to get his trophy.

We all got Coach Tommy a really cool plate.  Each kid put their finger print on it and then they turned each finger print into a baseball.  So so cute!

One last "Gooooo Hogs!!!!"  What a great time!!  I hope Lincoln wants to play t-ball again!!!