Wednesday, September 30, 2015

8... 8... 8 is great.

We celebrated small this year... after a week away, and driving 9+ hours the day before, we decided to have a super laid back family party to celebrate Charlotte. She doesn't ask for much... but chocolate on chocolate is a MUST on "her" day... everything else is just an added bonus.

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Tuesday, September 29, 2015

Dear Charlotte Wray { 8 years old }

Dear Charlotte Wray,

8... 8 is great.... can't believe you're 8 already! Slow down a little... won't you?

Every birthday that passes, you turn more and more into a young lady. We knew it was inevitable... but seriously, it's happened way faster than we'd like. This year was filled with tons of laughter and giggles, as well as LOTS of growing (for all of us) in the patience department.

You changed your favorite color about as often as you changed your underwear... but right now, the current favorite, is HOT PINK. Your favorite meal is still spaghetti and meat sauce. You LOVE chocolate (still)... but are beginning to order cookie dough ice cream when we go out, instead of chocolate. Each time that happens, we are a little shocked because of how much of a chocolate lover you are. You love to work out... gymnastics is still your thing. You love to watch Crossfit videos with Daddy, and hangout in his gym with him whenever you can. You also love to bake with Mommy... chocolate chip banana muffins are still your specialty. You don't even need a recipe in order to bake them.

You're in second grade now... and reading a lot. You're in the middle of "The Magic Treehouse" series... and get excited to start each new book. You like to learn interesting/weird facts... and love sharing all that new information with whomever will listen. You love to get done with school as soon as you can, so you can get right to playing. Your imagination is still such a huge part of who you are. The places you explore in your mind... limitless.

You, Charlie... still sing... a lot. You don't need a reason to sing, and can do it all day long. Along with singing, comes dancing... and you don't a reason to dance either. You'll break out in dance even if there's a long line at the grocery store... it's your way of entertaining everyone while they wait. You have a way of doing that... entertaining others. It's your gift, and your joy.

You are such a vital part of our family. We are so thankful to "the sweet Ukrainian lady" (what you call your biological mother)... who carried you and brought you into this world. For life without you, would be so boring... you are such a colorful little spirit. God is SO good in bringing you to us.

We love you sweet Charlotte,

Daddy, Mommy, Marley and Finn

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Saturday, September 12, 2015

For "R"... Love, Charlotte

Charlotte has had the sweetest of pen pals for quite some time now... and she wanted to send her little pal something "handmade". Of course, I obliged and pulled out all things crafty. Really, the kids have free reign in my office/craft area. They just don't like to venture away from paper and markers. We had a couple wooden letters left over from a different project. It was perfect, because it was the letter of her pen pal's first name, "R". She chimed in that she wanted to draw on it, and Marley chimed in that it should be painted. I reached up on my shelf for my ginormous jar filled with washi tape, and as I pulled it down, the kids were just in "awe" that I was allowing them to craft with my beloved tape. I told them to pick out 4 different ones that they wanted to use. The kept pulling one out, and another, and another, and then replacing another with one that had already been pulled out. I think this occupied them for 15 minutes... could have been longer if I didn't hurry them up.

The girls then got started tearing off pieces of tape, and immediately stuck it on the wooden letter. I had them overlap some of the tape, to add a different look. The worked on the front and the back, not leaving one millimeter of wood uncovered.

Once the tape was exactly where they wanted it, we used some Mod Podge (picked up a tiny bottle from the Dollar Spot at Target awhile ago) and they took turns painting on the clear protective, sealing paint.

Once it dried, we hung some yarn around it...

Super simple and totally one-of-a-kind. It's just the right "handmade" item to send off to her dear penpal to hang on a doorknob, from a dresser, a hook on a wall, or even on her door to her room.
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Tuesday, September 01, 2015

A Beautiful Routine

We kicked off our school year yesterday... and although I wasn't totally prepared for our first day (the homeschool area is in shambles)... we made it work, and there was so much excitement in today. As much as I'm not a planner, there's this sort of beautiful routine that comes with a new school year.

I can't believe it... but here we are... 2nd grade. Let the fun begin...

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Monday, August 31, 2015

Heart is There

We can't really say "no" to visiting a farmer's market. They are BY FAR one of our favorite things to do as a family. They are all so different here in the city. They're all on the smaller side (when you compare them to European markets or even Pennsylvania Farmer's Markets) but the heart is still there. It's filled with folks who are all about keeping it local (buying, growing, selling, etc.) We ventured to the Uptown Farmer's market (only once a month on Sundays) this past Sunday after church. Although the food was scrumptious, the most fun was seeing the sweet animals with Agvocates. I think I squealed just as much as the girls at the ducklings and chicks.

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