Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Memorial Day Weekend

This was our fourth or fifth Memorial Day weekend in Big Canoe with the YaYas and may have been the best yet!

Hot tubbing while we wait for the Pritchetts and Pumpellys to arrive.

We met them for dinner at Fuego's.  They had a bounce house set up and a local band playing.  Olivia and her buddy had a blast.

McIver and Andrew may have turned a corner in their somewhat bumpy relationship.  McIver was happy to show Andrew all about his Pokemon cards ... and Andrew was excited to hear about them.  I have photographic evidence that they were having fun together!

Helen Randall and James were the life of the dance party.

Fun with expiration dates!

Saturday, May 28, 2011

3rd Grade South Carolina Day

The 3rd grade studies South Carolina during the second half of the school year.  They learned about native animals, history, the state bird/drink/dog/flower, etc. and created a South Carolina ABC book.  South Carolina Day is their chance to showcase their work.  Parents are invited to the classrooms where we also saw a quick play about the respiratory and circulatory systems.  Olivia really was more into it than she looks in this picture.  

Olivia thought it was hilarious that she's as tall as her teacher.

Since it was SC Day, the students were allowed to wear non-uniform shirts IF they related to South Carolina.  Olivia was thrilled to be able to wear her "Clemson Girls love their Tigers" short.  Her buddy's shirt says "Carolina Girls love their Gamecocks."  They thought they were something else!

After a lunch featuring foods from South Carolina (our contribution was boiled peanuts!), the students sang several songs about South Carolina.  

One last picture on the last day of school with Mrs. Clarke, the associate teacher.

Friday, May 27, 2011

Last Day of School

Thought it would be fun to compare first day of school pictures with last day of school.  It WAS fun ... and sad, too.  My babies are growing up!

Olivia - August 2010

Olivia - May 2011

McIver - August 2010

McIver - May 2011

Olivia & McIver - August 2010

Olivia & McIver - May 2011

Thursday, May 26, 2011

End of Year for the Marvelous Mallards

It was so much fun to be the Room Mom for McIver's Marvelous Mallard class this year.  His teachers were just so much fun to work with and such a great fit for McIver.  I found this great idea for a group teacher gift ...  Each student decorated a paper flower envelope for each teacher and sent in a gift card for a store/restaurant.  I stuck the flowers into a mosquito plant (which smells SO good - or maybe it's just the thought that they'll actually keep those pesky mosquitos away!) and we gave one to each teacher.  They were completely overwhelmed by the gift and loved seeing how each flower was decorated.

The Marvelous Mallards!

The last day of school ... one last picture with Mrs. SuSu and Mrs. Hancock

Look how happy he is!  He loves those ladies so much ... and loves that he 'won' the Most Tech Savvy Award this year.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Marvelous Mallard Progress Party

McIver has had a WONDERFUL experience in the Marvelous Mallard class at school this year.  His teachers are phenomenal and love him as much as we do.  Each year, the teachers host a Progress Party for the students to showcase their hard work throughout the year.

Each student has his own display space with writing samples from the beginning and end of the year.  McIver also chose to include his ABC pond book (dedicated to Mrs. SuSu), his pond project poster, book report poster, ME poster, his Special Assignment binder and his RIBBIT club membership.

Close-up of his pond poster on Ladybugs

Showing off his RIBBIT club membership.
Olivia and her buddies came by to check out McIver's work.

McIver with his display.

Mac & Mrs. Hancock (seriously, is she not the cutest!?)

Quick picture of this proud mama with her boy

After all of the grandparents, parents and several other classes made their way through the Progress Party, we had a beautiful picnic by the pond.  Mrs. SuSu felt like a rockstar because all of the parents were like paparazzi getting pictures of her with their Marvelous Mallard.  She has been such a great influence on McIver this year.  He's confident about his school work, knows how to and wants to challenge himself.

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Round Robin

I have LOVED playing tennis over the last year.  I've met so many fun ladies and had so much fun playing in league matches, taking lessons and clinics and just hitting around with new friends.  Sadly, one of our teammates is moving back to Greenville this summer.  It's good news for her and her family, but we will miss having her on our team.  Rather than just going to lunch to send her off, we decided to have a round robin out at Forest Lake and then lunch in the new tennis hut.  We had a great time playing together one last time and it was a perfect way to say goodbye.

Might have been better to get a picture BEFORE we played but at least we got one!


First Citizens won their game on Thursday night (after the field trip to Swan Lake and before Olivia's chorus concert).  McIver had a great game in that he really stayed engaged and focused.  He got on base and listened well to his base coaches.  There was one play where he really, REALLY wanted to run from 2nd to third, but he held his spot and ended up scoring a run during the next play.

They won again Saturday morning beating the other team 13-8.  Typically, McIver is pretty listless when he's playing catcher.  He doesn't normally get up and go after foul balls or pitches that don't actually land in his glove.  Today, though, he popped up and went after a foul ball.  It was out of his reach, but I was proud that he went for it.  He also managed to stop quite a few pitches and had fun behind the plate because he was really engaged in the game.  He also got two good hits when he batted, but wasn't able to outrun the throw to first.

First Citizens aka The Gators after the win on Thursday

Serious concentration!

We're still in the tournament and have another game on Monday.  If we (they!) win on Monday, then they'll play in the final playoff game on Saturday morning.  They'll be playing the team that beat them twice before.  Both times, we could easily have won, but the infield got carried away trying to stare down runners and ended up throwing the ball away and allowing runs to be scored.  If they can stay focused and keep their heads in the game, they really could win the championship.

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Mothers Day 2011 (continued)

I LOVE my Total Pillow!  Olivia bought it for me using her own money (received from the Easter Bunny) on a recent trip to Target.  I don't think Will appreciates it yet, but he will be begging for it on our next road trip when he's trying to nap in the car!

Lots of love from McIver on Mothers Day...

A portrait.  His teacher told me that he started out with just the portrait of me, but then decided to add the family portrait behind it because he knows how much I love to have pictures of our family.

"My mom is special because she buys me pokemon.  I love it when my mom cook her fabyles (fabulous) pizza.  She makes me laugh when she tickles me.  My favorite thing about my mom is her reiding Harry Potter. My mom rocks a lot!"

This is also quite special because I can tell how much effort he put into using his very best handwriting.  Not sure about all of the things he wrote - I haven't actually bought him pokemon in a long time (I have taken him to Target and let him spend his own money!) and I can't remember ever making pizza,  much less 'fabyles' pizza.  Still, it makes me happy to know that reading Harry Potter is special to him because I am loving the 5th book right now!!

Monday, May 9, 2011

Mothers Day 2011

Mothers Day 2011 after church with Mamoo

We met Mamoo at her church for the 11:00 service.  She was so happy and proud to be able to show off her grandson and two of her great grandchildren to all of her friends.  Afterwards, we took her to brunch at Forest Lake where she also saw some friends.

I didn't get any pictures of me with my family, but I love this picture so much.  It was a Mothers Day to remember.  Even though I ended up with a hoarse voice, I had a great day.  I was showered with gift from the children ... a Total Pillow from Olivia (bought with her own money), a portrait and sweet paragraph from McIver, and a Nook from the whole family (or maybe it's just from Will).  I spent part of the afternoon playing with my new toy, then took the kids over to a friend's house to swim and visit for an hour or so.

Still no voice today, but my heart is definitely full!


Sometime around mid-week last week, Will asked McIver if he'd be interested in going to Darlington to see his first NASCAR race.  McIver jumped at the chance.  Will had tried to get some other dads/sons to go with them, but it was just too last minute.  So, they pressed on, bought their tickets and loaded up on Saturday after the baseball game.  (McIver's team won so they're still in the play-offs.)  I sent Will with the camera and am so proud of him for getting so many great shots.

In front of a 'real' race car on the way to the track.

Look!  Will even asked someone to take their picture because he knew I'd want one of the two of them.  That's pit road behind them... and McIver already has a new t-shirt on (Hendrick Motor Sports, if you must know).

Another shot of them together in the stands.  They were about 4 rows from the bottom.  Will sent a text telling me how loud it was and that Mac was on Sensory Overload.  I was worried that it was too loud for him, but Will wrote back and told me it was "sensory overload in a good way."

No worries ... he had his headphones and radio scanner so he could keep up with the action.

Playing Angry Birds and waiting for the race to begin.

Will's teaching our boy right ... #3 for Dale Earnhardt.

Will managed to get a shot with a car in the background.

Even though they didn't stay until the end of the race, they both had a great time.  McIver tried to tell us about it this morning, but finally threw his hands up and said 'there's just so much to tell.'  We've gotten bits and pieces out of him all day long.  They're already making plans to go back next year!

Sunday, May 8, 2011

"Reading is a Treat"

I helped with the school book fair last week.  The money raised supports the library and the visiting authors that come to school each semester.  Our school librarians are the bomb and really take the time to help the children find books that interest them.  Our theme this year was "Reading is a Treat."

The 3rd grade art club made the sign for us. They drew candy wrappers all over the sign and even glued some (clean) wrappers to it, too.

How cute are those lollipops!?

I borrowed the cupcake idea from my college friend Hillary.  Her mom made them for her as Christmas decorations a few years ago and I remembered seeing the pictures on Facebook.  After several trips to Lowe's, we were quite pleased with the final product.  Too bad some of the students thought the gumballs (that were HOTglued to the insulation on the top of the cupcakes) were for them.  We ended up with lots of little white marks where the paint peeled off.  The 'candies' on the doors are frisbees wrapped in cellophane and tied with curling ribbon.

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Johnston Family Reunion

The descendants of Mamoo's grandfather held their annual reunion (I think it was the 44th reunion!) last Sunday in St. George, South Carolina.  Will was on call, but I knew having us be there would mean so much to Mamoo so the children and I rode down with her Sunday morning.  When we arrived, we signed in under Mamoo's father's name along with many of Mamoo's nieces and nephews, Ginny, Jimmy and Jimmy's brother, Bobby and his wife, Faye. 

Mamoo found a seat by the fountain and 'held court.'  She loved being back in the town where she grew up and surrounded by her family.

McIver had a ball playing basketball, running around the yard and introducing the little boys (distant cousins) to Pokemon.  Olivia stuck pretty close to me, but everyone enjoyed the fried chicken and picnic lunch.
Mamoo with Ginny (Will's mom), a cousin whose name I can't recall, Mamoo's nephew Tommy, and Will's Uncle Bobby

Monday, May 2, 2011

Another Day at the Lake

We had a busy, busy morning on Saturday ... final baseball game of the regular season at 9am and Olivia's soccer game at noon.  On our way off the soccer field, Olivia invited a friend to come to the lake with us for the afternoon.  The Isemans also joined us.  Will put the pontoon boat back in the water and we headed for the Rusty Anchor for a late afternoon snack.

These precious baby ducks paddled over to the Rusty Anchor docks.  Some nice people on a boat near us shared their bread with the kids so they could feed the ducks.

Cool dude.

What a shot of Tex!!

The Isemans stopped on their way to the lake to pick up some crickets.  They were a huge hit with the fish and I think every child caught something.

One last jet ski ride before taking them out of the water.  So glad that Will is confident enough to wear my pink life vest!