Amy Scott's Thoughts

Sharing the thoughts that bounce around in my brain!

A Feeling that Fall is Around the Bend… July 21, 2019

Filed under: Simply Me — Amy Scott @ 3:10 pm

So many things this last week have reminded me that fall is right around the bend. After our big summer vacation, my mind shifted to back to school shopping for Owen. I was curious how long I could hold out before buying his school supplies. Turns out I made it to the middle of July. I view this as acceptable since I’ve had the list since June 3rd and I didn’t act on my desire to go school shopping the very day we got it (which was before summer vacation even started).

Monday was a wet and rainy day here around the PNW and it brought all the fall feelings to me. I wanted to bake pumpkin bread, put up a fall wreath and read a book while listening to the rain outside my window. In reality, I previewed MOPS training videos to show for my leadership retreat. Watching those training videos also reminded me that another new MOPS year is right around the corner and we are in the process of preparing for it to the best one yet.

Owen’s new school opens the library once a week for students to come in and check out books. We met up with friends and explored the library and then played on the playground. I enjoyed being inside the school and seeing more of the building. I also got the date of the back to school BBQ. I’m probably more excited than Owen to see his classroom and meet this teacher. I have so much nervous anticipation about this transition to all day school. Preschool was a good bridge for both Owen and I. He is for sure ready for school and I have adapted to a schedule where he was gone part of the day.  And since he still naps in the afternoons at this point, I’m going to guess that all day school feels just like preschool in the morning and nap time in the afternoon. The only hour I’m really missing the one where he once came home for lunch before nap time.

We recently found out that there is a spot for Graham in the preschool program at our church. My emotions of Owen going off to elementary school are coupled with the fact that my Graham buddy is going to be gone now three mornings a week. I’m so used to sending Owen off for age appropriate adventures while Graham tags along with me. My little tag-along is now about to have his own adventures. I’m hoping and praying it’s a good one for him since he tends to be more of a homebody like me.

And to continue the fall vibes, my steering team got together this weekend to plan our MOPS & MOMSnext year ahead. This weekend is always  important because the new team members are getting on the same page with the last year’s team members. There is planning, there is praying and there is team bonding and unity built through shared vision and fun. Getting a full team this year took some effort so I am beyond grateful for the ladies that said yes to leading. We gathered and you could feel that this team was coming together well. After vacation, I had a hard time pulling myself back into MOPS mode, but now that the retreat has come and gone, I can feel the momentum. The excitement of the team also fuels my fire to keep moving forward. The moms in this community deserve the best. I am looking forward to serving alongside an awesome group of ladies this year.

While the signs point to fall being right around the bend, we aren’t kicking summer to the curb just yet. There are many play dates still to be had. There are swimming lessons upcoming in the next few weeks. Jeremy took the boys camping while I worked on MOPS & MOMSnext this weekend. They loved all things camping. And my boys have found a passion for hiking. Show them a trail and they are ready for an adventure. The boys explored Mt. Rainier and Mt. St. Helens and came home with many stories to share.

With change and transition right around the corner, I am doing my best to savor these days. I am loving the play dates because time with our people is always sweet. I am thankful for the sound of laughter in backyard. We’ve hit the library for many books and even went to see The Reptile Man show there last week. This is what summer time is all about. I’m also looking forward to Jeremy having more time off in August. We’re daydreaming about day trips. And I even get to have a couple nights away with a sweet friend for a girls only trip. I am beyond thrilled!

I might be dreaming of pumpkin bread, fall leaves and sweaters, but there is so much goodness right here and right now, I’m not ready to skip ahead quite yet.

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Checking trail cameras with the cousins – and Uncle Nathan, Papa and Jeremy (not pictured).

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They had to put on their Tillamook Creamery gear because they were pretending to work at the factory. 

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Dinner date with friends – playing silly train with the red wagon. 

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Visiting his new school 

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Watching The Reptile Man at the library

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A full table of ladies who are eating, laughing and sharing makes my heart happy! 

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The Chehalis MOPS & MOMSnext Steering Team! So excited to serve alongside them this year! 

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Scott Boys Camping Trip 2019

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Scott Boys Camping Trip 2019

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Scott Boys Camping Trip 2019

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Scott Boys Camping Trip 2019

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Scott Boys Camping Trip 2019

 

 

California Redwoods & Oregon Coast Vacation July 13, 2019

Filed under: Simply Me — Amy Scott @ 5:17 pm

We just got back from a fantastic vacation to the California Redwoods and the Oregon Coast! On a whim, we decided to leave a day sooner than planned. After church on Sunday, we drove south to Cottage Grove, OR. Monday was supposed to be a long travel day to Crescent City, CA. By leaving a day early, we broke up our longest drive into two parts. And it started the fun of vacation sooner! It was a total win!

On our way down to Cottage Grove, we stopped at playground in Albany to make dinner. It was our goal to bring our own food on this trip to save money and eat less fast food. We succeeded in that goal since we didn’t get fast food once on our adventure. And by eating our own food, we found many playgrounds to stop at so the boys could stretch their legs as well eat. However, I will admit that by the end of the trip our family had no enthusiasm left for PB&J sandwiches.

We got into our hotel in Cottage Grove and we were ready to swim. They boys got plenty of pool time over the course of  the trip and they loved every second of it. To make me happy, Jeremy took us on an adventure to find all the covered bridges that surrounded Cottage Grove. I found some information about them before we left for our trip and I had shared how cool I thought it would be to see them. Jeremy totally made it happen! It was a very picturesque way to spend the evening before heading to bed.

Monday, we had lunch in Grants Pass, OR at a playground before making our way into California on the Redwoods Highway. Jeremy’s goal for Monday was to find the Grove of the Titans which features some of the biggest trees in the Redwoods. Jeremy & I visited the Redwoods seven years ago and after that trip Jeremy started to research the tress in the area. It’s been on his bucket list to find certain trees and we did our best to make those dreams come true. These big trees are off trail and Jeremy did careful research to find where we needed to divert from the well marked trails. I’m not a big nature girl and I was terrified of poison oak the whole time. I was pleased to find that the hiking on and off the trails wasn’t too hard and we certain did find some giant trees. I am so happy that we were able to accomplish Jeremy’s dream. I did joke with him though that if we continue to hike as a family, I’m going to need to invest in hiking apparel! The boys love hiking and the redwood trees captured their hearts just like their father. The boys were totally in their element. While I was paranoid about poison oak, they adventured onward without a care in the world.  After the Grove of the Titans, we checked into our super cute cabin and went into Crescent City for dinner and to put our toes in the ocean. Oh, I should also mention that Monday was Jeremy and I’s 13th wedding anniversary. It was a bit overshadowed by the trip, but that is okay. If you would have told me 13 years ago that I would hiking off trail with my 3 boys on July 8th, I would have laughed! I’m grateful for the life I have with Jeremy and the ways that stretches me. There has never been a dull moment with him in my life.

Tuesday was more redwood trees and beaches. We went through Lady Bird Johnson Grove where Owen wanted me to take his picture inside every hollowed out tree we passed. Over the course of the entire trip, I took about 1,000 pictures. I’m sure 400 of them are of that grove and those trees… We also did a drive thru tree because, why not? We made it back to Crescent City in time to buy a Papa Murpy’s pizza (Owen’s current fav) and bake it at our cabin. After dinner and doughnuts for dessert, we went back near the Grove of the Titans to find more trees. It was a full a day of tree sightings and beach combing. I can’t even count how many rocks and shells Owen collected on this trip!

Wednesday was a our transition day from California to Oregon. We were all sad to say good-bye to the cabin. It had been a good home base for us. It felt secluded but close to the main road. It had no television or wi-fi so we felt disconnected and rustic without being too far off the grid. I’m not sure if we’ll get a chance to stay there again, but if the opportunity came up, I would for sure do it again. On Wednesday travels included stopping at the Cape Blanco Lighthouse where we learned that Graham is too short to go to the top of most lighthouses. Bummer. We stopped at the park in Bandon, OR for a playground lunch before heading off to the Sea Lion Caves. The boys loved the caves and it was fun to visit them again. Jeremy and I spent our first anniversary in the Lincoln City area and had visited the caves on that trip. When we made it into Newport that evening, we had dinner at the original Mo’s which was a highlight for me. The boys’ drinks came with a toy shark on the straws and they were the perfect “free” souvenirs! We checked into our hotel that night and let me say… it was scary. I was worried about bed bugs. Jeremy was concerned that our floor sank down in the middle of the room. We did have a view of the ocean which the boys loved. We swam in the pool that evening and I prayed for no rashes. Then we took a walk on the beach. And that concluded our day.

We checked our of our hotel as quickly as possible on Thursday morning. We had breakfast at Pig’n’Pancake which is an Oregon Coast favorite of mine. We visited the Yaquina Head Lighthouse and walked a rock beach at that park where we saw seals lazing around on rocks off shore. Then we  visited the Oregon Coast Aquarium. The highlights of that stop were Owen getting a hug from a sea urchin, seeing sharks, sea otters,  jelly fish and sea horses. We had lunch outside of  the Yaquina Bay Lighthouse before taking a self guided tour. Then we hit the road for the outlet mall in Lincoln City. This was definitely a stop for me, but every member of our family got something while shopping. And they had a fantastic playground. Are you noticing a theme? We made it into our final destination of Tillamook, OR in time to have dinner at the Tillamook Creamery. We came back to the hotel to swim and then returned to the creamery right before it closed for an ice cream dessert.

Friday was our final day of traveling. We went to the Tillamook Creamery for a third time because we love it so much. It was fun to be there with so few people since the crowds hadn’t arrived yet. We took of for Cannon Beach where the boys were finally allowed to get wet in the ocean water. Graham didn’t want to so we walked back to the parking lot and played at a playground.  Owen stayed with Jeremy and played in the water like a happy little fish. As a special treat, we had lunch at Mo’s (yes, again) instead of making our own lunches. We went back down to the beach afterward to fly kites that Grandma had gifted the boys for the trip. The boys loved flying the kites. After the kites were put away we took off to the local bakery for dessert before hitting the road once more. Our final stop on our adventure was to do the Astoria Column. We walked all 164 steps to the top of the column to throw balsa wood airplanes. The column is something we’ve often wondered if we should do with the boys and since Graham would climb to the top of any lighthouses, we figured this would be the next best thing. Owen did have to point out that there was no light at top. Oh well. Flying the planes turned out to be quite the adventure as our planes caught the wind and flew long and far away from the tower. When the boys realized that they would never be able to retrieve their planes they went looking for discard planes around the park and found two to take home.

We arrive home with tons of laundry, sand, dirt and rocks. We had a great time making memories and blazing new trails. I’m grateful that we are at an age with our boys that we can take trips like this. They held their own hiking and kept up with the pace of our sightseeing. They loved every playground and pool we stopped at. Now we’re back to reality, but the good times we just had won’t quickly leave our minds. Owen is now super into redwoods and I have a feeling it won’t be hard for him to twist Jeremy’s arm into going back again some day – especially when the boys are older and able to hike more difficult trails. I might want our next California vacation to be Disneyland, but I have a feeling I might have to battle for that since state parks and big trees seem to hold the hearts of my men.

It’s hard to narrow down which pictures to share in this space. I’m sure I would use up all my media storage if I did the full 1,000. So here is a sampling of 20+!

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Pool in Cottage Grove

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Making my cover bridge adventure happen. This bridge was a train bridge so the boys were quite fond of it. 

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 I love this picture except for my crazy eyes!

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Grove of the Titans

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Our cabin for two nights

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California coast at Crescent City

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Owen’s favorite kind of tree

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We couldn’t pass up the opportunity to do a drive thru tree!

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Cape Blanco Lighthouse

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Sea Lion Caves

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Sea Lion Caves

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Swimming Pool # 2 in Newport

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Yaquina Head Lighthouse

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Yaquina Head State Park

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Yaquina Head Lighthouse

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Oregon Coast Aquarium

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Oregon Coast Aquarium

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Yaquina Bay Lighthouse

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Outlet shopping

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First stop at Tillamook Creamery

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By pool #3 Graham was starting to get comfortable with the water.

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Stop #2 at the creamery for dessert

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A beautiful day in Cannon Beach

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Let’s go fly a kite! 

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Let’s go fly a kite! 

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Astoria Column

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Ready to send his plane soaring! 

 

Hello July! July 6, 2019

Filed under: Simply Me — Amy Scott @ 11:51 am

And just like that we are in July. Turns out my cold was a sinus infection, so I’m wrapping up two weeks of being sick. Being sick in the summer just isn’t right, let me tell you. Our month of June finished up with VBA, the big wedding and then we welcomed July with a play date, Independence Day, a family adventure to NW Trek and celebrating my Dad’s birthday!

Okay, so there is the big update on the wedding since I hyped it up in my last post. Owen and Graham did great for the dress rehearsal. The bride had them sit on the steps at the bottom of the stage (which was smart). They didn’t have to hold still up front or be in the spotlight. Their spot also meant we could sit close to them and keep them in check. The morning on the wedding was good for Owen, not so much for Graham. My youngest child seemed to think it was okay to be a pill for pictures. He didn’t want to take pictures, so Owen participated and represented the ring bears well. When it came time for the actual ceremony, they made it down the aisle uneventfully and then Graham came to sit with Jeremy and I – where he fell asleep. I would much rather having a sleeping ring bearer than a dramatic one. The reception was fun and the kids held out through the whole thing. This is the first time we’ve stayed for the bride & groom send off since having kiddos. The wedding was lovely and it was so special to be near my friend on her wedding day. I’m so glad she let the boys be a part of her wedding so I could tag along for the festivities.

The summer fun continues with celebrations and play dates and outings. We are thankful for friends and family that bring so much joy to our life. We are blessed to have such wonderful people to do life with. Now our next big adventure is our family road trip. We are in planning and prepping mode right now. I’m hopeful that with enough snacks and entertainment, the boys will have a fantastic ride and that we’ll be happy campers to our many destinations. I love having my parents as neighbors. They plan on taking care of the chickens while we are away. The hens are about to start laying eggs soon so we are on the lookout daily. We still have two roosters, but the next time we are home on a Friday we will take another rooster to the chicken auction. Time will tell if we end up keeping any roosters. Right now Foster is the kindest rooster ever. He snuggles with Jeremy daily. I’m not sure if that is normal… but… I know very little about chickens.

Here are some pictures of our recent adventures!

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Wrapping up VBA

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Ring Security

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Notice Graham is MIA

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The beautiful bride! 

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Singing a VBA song for the church

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Smiley boys post nap time

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Ready for summer travels

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Fireworks with my boys!

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NW Trek with family

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Celebrating Grandpa’s birthday

 

It was the best of times, it was the… June 26, 2019

Filed under: Simply Me — Amy Scott @ 11:41 am

To quote Charles Dickens (which I don’t do often) – it was the best of times, it was the worst of times… I feel like that accurately sums up the last week and a half. Honestly, I could gloss over the hard moments and simply share stories of all the adventures we’ve had, the places we’ve been, the people we’ve seen. You’d assume we’ve been living the dream. And yes, there have been so many good moments. We are thankful for them. I guess for every up in life, there is a potential down too.

Let’s get the “downs” over with. The first week of summer has been a harder adjustment period than I expected. The boys haven’t been behaving very well with each other or with me. Now that Owen is home from preschool, we’re adapting to full days together again. It was a rocky start to say the least. I’m trying to balance play, outside time and rest with some light school work, chores and play dates. Last week got over scheduled which is my bad, but the stress was also deepened by having the flooring installers come out yet again, the van in the shop for a day, busy preparations for VBA and then our family developed summer colds. That’s the hard stuff…

The good stuff is we hung out with lot of people we love and enjoy! We went to lots of parks. We live in a beautiful area. It was great to get outside with friends. We ate lots of a good food. We fell into bed tired each night after full days. We really made the most of the moments.

I know that the “good stuff” paragraph was way shorter than the “hard stuff” paragraph. I would love to to give you all the details on our fun adventures, but I’m still struggling with my summer cold. My brain is a bit foggy. Instead of rambling on about the good times we’ve had, I’ll share them in pictures. I hope that my next post will be a more informative.

I’ve learned a lot this last week. The kids have been out of routine and it’s changed their behavior. I often assume that they will just roll with the changes, but I can assume too much of them. We needed more naps/down time this last week than we got. Last summer the boys got along so well that I had hoped those same vibes would transfer over to this summer. Even though we got a rocky start with behavior, I am optimistic that if we slow things down, we’ll work through the issues and we’ll adjust to all being home together again.

It’s VBA week right now. With summer colds (for Jeremy, Graham and I). It’s been a bad combination. Jeremy needed my help so Graham and I joined VBA for two days. They were a rough two days for me. I am sick and the group of kiddos I led were a bit on the wild side. I felt bad that I wasn’t able to give the kids my best self because I was under the weather. I have high standards for myself and I wasn’t able to reach them this week. I also felt bad because I wanted to be the best leader possible as a support to my hubby. Instead he got a leader who was just limping along. This is Graham’s last year to be too young for VBA, so I know I’ll get to make up for my rough two days next year.  Graham enjoyed his two days at VBA with some minor hiccups. Owen is enjoying the full week experience. He is so social. Events like VBA are perfect for him.

After VBA wraps up, our boys will be ring bearers in a wedding this weekend. I’m a little nervous about how they will do as ring bearers… I guess we’ll find out soon enough. If anything, I’m sure I’ll have some cute photo opportunities. I having a feeling this weekend will be a memory we never forget! I am so happy for the bride & groom. It’s sweet that my boys get to be a part of their special day. Stay tuned for the big wedding weekend lowdown!

Okay, that’s all for now. I hope to have a positive report for you next week!

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Tuesday’s Adventures: Flooring guy came to the house while we went to a play date with preschool friends. Then we went to claim our free books from the summer reading program at the library and do a grocery pick at Walmart. Love having pick up in our local area! 

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Wednesday: We went down to Rainier, OR to meet up with Auntie April for the morning. Grandma joined us since our van was in the shop. Then it was home to pick up the van and head to church for our regular Wednesday night classes. 

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No pictures from Thursday: VBA errands, haircuts for the ring bearers.  Friday adventures: A friend from high school and her three kiddos came to visit us for the morning/afternoon. Then we went out to Mossyrock for dinner with growth group friends. I love this shot of the boys out for an evening stroll to look at Mayfield Lake.

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Saturday: Spent the day out at Mayfield Lake hiking and playing with friends. The weather was cool and cloudy, so the park was quiet. I’m not an outdoorsy person, so I’m proud of myself for hiking twice this month. It helps that we live in a beautiful area and our boys are getting big enough to hold their own on a trail! 

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Mayfield Lake adventures!

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Our Sunday evening plans changed due to illness. We had hoped to go out to dinner and the park, but it made no sense for me to go out to eat when I couldn’t taste or enjoy my food with a cold. Jeremy still took the boys to the park for a bit while he ran VBA errands. He is the best dad ever! 

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Monday morning: VBA with my boy! Not pictured – Graham and about 43 other kiddos in my group!

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Monday evening: The first MOPS & MOMSnext Summer Play Date. We had ice cream and popsicles at the church playground. 

 

Kicking Off Summer! June 17, 2019

Filed under: Simply Me — Amy Scott @ 1:34 pm

Okay, summer might not officially start until later this week, but we are 100% in summer mode now. Owen just wrapped up his last week of school. Most of our friends were already out of school, so we kept the school schedule while making time for some fun play dates.  We got introduced to the concept of slip & slide thanks to our friend, Harper. We went to the river to swim with friends. We made personal pizzas and did a movie night with another set of friends. It was a good week and a the perfect way to wrap up the school year and welcome summer.

Friday was Jeremy’s day. To make sure that he got a full day to celebrate Father’s Day, we decided that Friday would be his to plan. He had lots of ideas that he dangled in front of us. He didn’t tell us until Friday morning where we were going. He decided to do drive down to Portland, OR to do the historic waterfall highway. Due to a terrible fire a few summers ago, this highway has been off limits. The boys and I were able to visit Multnomah Falls last summer, but none of the other waterfalls were open. This time we visited all the other waterfalls and not Multnomah Falls. We got to Multnomah Falls around 10am and the parking lot was already full with a huge line up of cars waiting to get in. We decided it wasn’t worth it to fight for a parking place.

I was very impressed with the boys on this trip. We hiked to see many of the waterfalls and the boys were trailblazers. No complaining! Graham only asked to be carried once at the very end and even then he accepted us saying no and finished the hike on his own. It was a great family outing and a reminder that our boys are getting bigger and they are able to do more. We took Jeremy to a late lunch at Cracker Barrel and then did a little shopping. We got Graham a step stool for his bed so he can be like Owen and have his bed frame assembled. The frame makes the bed really high so Graham has been using his mattress on the floor. After 9 months of not falling out of the bed, we decided he could take the next step. We also started by Target to find a slip & slide of our own. Owen is thrilled!

Saturday was a clean around the house and read a book day for me. Perfection! Jeremy took the boys to a work party at a local park where they like to fish. The boys helped pick up trash. Then the boys took off for an adventure to put trail cameras out on hunting trails. They came home little dust balls. Jeremy sent me a video of them kicking up dust as they walked. They reminded me of Pigpen from the Peanuts because they literally had a cloud surrounding them. While the boys were out, I cleaned up and sold Graham’s crib to some friends. It’s been sitting dismantled in our garage for some time and it was the last “baby” item to go. When we saw a friend requesting a crib on Facebook, we jumped at the chance to clear out some garage space. It feels a tiny bit sad to part with the crib, but since we’ve gotten rid of everything else that is baby related, I’m glad to have it all gone now.

Father’s Day was Sunday. We had a fairly regular morning at church and then came home for nap time. Once the boys woke up, we headed over to my parent’s house for ribs. My dad was very kind to make us a tasty meal on his special day. After dessert, we took a walk down the street to say hello to some neighbors from church. We stopped at one house to see a fish pond and swing on a super tall swing set. Then we continued further down the road to see bunnies and horses at another house. It was a fun walk and the kids loved the adventure. Even though we’ve lived here for over an year, we’ve never walked down to see the neighbors. It was the perfect way to wrap up a family evening together.

Today is our first day at home together for summer vacation. It’s had it’s ups and downs. We are going through a Summer Brain Quest book. It’s made for in-between grades so we have one for in-between preschool and kindergarten. The boys were very into it and we had a great time of learning this morning. Then we played… which means the kiddos just can’t keep their hands to themselves… Then we moved on to some chores which they also weren’t too into. I’m struggling with indoor chores these days because my boys are so into being outside right now. We’ve talked about chore attitudes. We’ve had a timeout from brotherly play to give space from one another. Today is the only morning we have at home until Friday. I’m sure getting out of the house and mixing things up will help with the energetic and adventuresome boys. Not mention it’s warming up and the sun is now out. They’ll happily be outside the rest of the day.  Owen wants to show the grandparents how the slip & slide works.

And there you have it – our summer kick off! We are looking forward to bringing our plans to life and giving this summer our best!

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Celebrating Cousin Bennett’s Birthday!

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Wrapping up the MOPS & MOMSnext year!

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Graham got a bike upgrade for summer!

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Slip & Slide

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Grandma’s Birthday! 

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Last Day of Preschool! It’s hard to believe his preschool years are now behind him! 

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September 2018 to June 2019

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Visiting the river

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Making his own pizza

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Waterfall Family Day

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Father’s Day Hiking! 

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2005, 2008, 2011, 2012, 2014, 2019 – Finally got Graham into a picture at one of our favorite spots!

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Picking up trash at the park to help our community

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A dust cloud wherever they go! This is what adventuring with Dad looks like! 

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Graham loves his new big boy bed! 

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Swinging at the neighbor’s house down the street. 

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Getting to hold a rabbit

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Meeting Dandelion

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Summer Time Learning – apparently I am the type of mom that makes my kids do schoolwork over the summer. Gotta stay ready for kindergarten!

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Learning to draw a chicken – his current favorite animal! 

 

Kindergarten Screening & The Great Wolf Lodge June 8, 2019

Filed under: Simply Me — Amy Scott @ 3:23 pm

What a wild week it has been since we last talked!

I wrapped up May with a book party. If someone reaches out to me do a book party then I’m totally game to do one. So I’ve now done two parties in 2019. I’m toying with the idea of actually looking for party bookings in the fall since it’s such a prime selling season. Two parties a month for a few months wouldn’t be too hard to swing. And I should have a bit more free time on my hands once my boys are into a new school routine. We’ll see… I’ve been happily using my Usborne Books & More business to provide gifts for the kiddos in my life. I’ve  had return customers place orders as well. I just cashed in a bunch of personal rewards this last week and I have a big box of books arriving next week that I got for next nothing. Even though I’m not actively pursing my book business, I love that I am still benefiting from it.

Last weekend was very social. We had a birthday party for a friend on Saturday which turned into only half of the family going while the other half stayed home with a bad attitude. I could go into that more…. but it might need to be its own psychology post. Long story short is that Graham is an introvert who didn’t want to go to the party so he threw a fit about getting dressed. A punishment for Owen would be to not let him go to the party, so that is the punishment we gave to Graham. Turns out Graham got his way by staying home and we didn’t realize that was end goal until later in the day. I’ve been pondering the situation all week. It’s going to be interesting to figure out as Graham grows what social endeavors we push him towards and what areas we back off because of his introverted nature. In ministry, we have lots of social situations we show up for, especially as a family. I don’t want him to resent ministry because he needed quiet, down time that his family schedule never allowed for. Like I said, lots of psychology behind that story….

Saturday night, Jeremy and I were able to slip away for a movie date. We got to see Aladdin in theaters. We are enjoying these live action remakes of our favorite Disney movies. We’ve been singing songs from the movie all week. On Sunday, after church and nap time, we had some friends from our growth group over for dinner. It was just the couple and their two boys (who were at the birthday party the day before). Graham was thrilled to have them come over to play. It’s interesting to see how he responded so differently to playing on his home turf with a smaller group of people.

Monday was Owen’s kindergarten screening. I will admit that I was nervous. When we checked in, Owen had some reservation about going off with the teacher by himself. Truthfully, it felt weird to me to send him away with someone I don’t know and off into a part of the school where I wasn’t even sure where he was being taken. His preschool years have all happened at our home church with family members working on site. It’s new to send him off with complete strangers in a building we don’t know. Owen quickly got over his reservation and went willingly with the teacher. When he came back to us, he was skipping and telling us all about the fun he had. As far as I know they had him identify colors and numbers, write his name and cut with scissors along a straight line. They gave us a list of dates for the fall and his school supply list. This will be the first time we’ve gone school supply shopping. I love shopping for school supplies, so I have to temper my excitement. I would run out and buy them all now, but I know that would make me appear weird… So when it is socially acceptable to buy school supplies? Is July too early? Holding out to August might be too hard for my personality!

Since Owen’s screening didn’t run very long, he had plenty of time to head to preschool on Monday morning. This was the first day without his usual friends in attendance. I was so concerned that the change in the classroom dynamic would ruin his last two weeks of preschool. He came home from preschool in a great mood and he has had a fantastic time at preschool all week. This confirms that our decision to let him stay  through the middle of June was the right choice. He’ll go for one more week and then we’ll be officially on summer vacation!

To beat the school’s out rush, we decided to cash in our Great Wolf Lodge gift card that we got from Nana & Papa at Christmas. The boys were so excited to go again after visiting for the first time last September. We got a “wolf den” room where the boys slept in bunk beds with a fun wolf den decor surrounding it. Since our boys are bigger now and they knew what to expect, we spent double the time at the water park this time. Graham was the first to peter out both days, but he went much longer than last time. Graham also tried a water slide for the first time and Owen tried a new water slide as well. There is still one water slide that Owen needs to grow three inches in order to ride. He can’t wait for that day to come. The Great Wolf Lodge is such a fun adventure for our family and we loved every second of it. I love that it feel like we got a mini vacation and all we did was drive 20 minutes down the road!

This next week will be full of celebrations! We have a birthday party for my nephew this weekend. It’s my mom’s birthday is this week and then there is Father’s Day weekend. Quite a few of our friends are already out of school, so we’re scheduling play dates with them around Owen’s school schedule. Monday will also be my last MOPS & MOMSnext meeting of the year. Lots of good stuff coming up, for sure. I’m super tempted to make our third week in June busy as well to keep up the fun pace, but I might need to slow down and pause as we prepare for VBA at the end of the month and then more family gatherings, holidays and vacation in the beginning/middle of July. I have this feeling like our summer is going to go by in a flash. A fun flash, but a flash nonetheless. We are ready for all the fun and sun and adventure that is coming our way! Bring on summer!

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It’s hard to see, but Jeremy built the chickens a tunnel to run through. He is hoping it will help them get more exercise and save some of the grass in their pen. On a side note, we might have three roosters. We for sure have two now. Looks like we’ll have to try again with Buff Orpingtons next year… 

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The best one from Owen’s school pictures! 

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Pizza & orange soda before heading down to swim at The Great Wolf Lodge.

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Wolf ears on and ready to swim!

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Breakfast buffet. First time introducing our kids to all you can eat dining. 

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They were so excited to watch the show in the lobby. Last time they could care less about it… it’s interesting to see what can change in a few months. 

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Ready to swim take two!

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One of the good/odd things about staying at the Great Wolf Lodge is that I leave my cell phone in the room. I don’t have water protection for it, so I am fully present with my family, which isn’t a bad thing at a water park. It just means I have no actual photos of the main event. 

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We came home yesterday to a rainy and cold day. The boys asked for footie pajamas and we all lounged around after spending so much energy playing in the water. 

 

The Biggest BBQ Ever & Owen’s Preschool Graduation May 30, 2019

Filed under: Simply Me — Amy Scott @ 2:12 pm

Lots of big things going on over here in my little corner of the world. I’m going to start with Owen’s preschool graduation because it was the most recent event and it’s currently what’s on my mind.

Yesterday Owen “graduated” from preschool with a little ceremony. The kids said a group prayer, sang some songs, got up in front and told everyone their name and what they want to be when they grow up. The class even walked in to Pomp & Circumstance. It doesn’t get anymore official than that.

Owen showed a great deal of enthusiasm throughout the ceremony. He narrated the entire class slideshow by yelling out the name of each child featured. My introverted self was mentally willing him to be quiet, but I have to realize that just because I want to blend into the crowd, doesn’t mean my son will blend in or even want to blend in.  I am not him. It’s good realize our differences so I don’t get hung up on trying to make my kids representations of me. They are not.

The graduation celebration ended with bounce houses, snow cones and cotton candy in the gym. The preschoolers went wild with excitement. It was fun to see them all running amok together. There were lots of photo opportunities and hugs and congratulations shared.

For part of Owen’s preschool class, today is their last day of school. There is an option to stay in school until June 13th which we decided would be a good fit for Owen since he loves school so much. However, part of the class will be gone now, including his two best buddies. I’m not sure if he’ll want to continue through the 13th with the classroom dynamic changing. I took a “last day of school” picture today, just to be safe. We’ll see how things pan out.

Monday is Owen’s kindergarten screening. I’m unsure of what to expect even though I’ve done some research with friends. Seems like different schools do different things for kindergarten screening. The answers I got varied considerably. I’ll be intrigued to see how things go. This whole kindergarten scene is new to me. I feel like I’m on a wild ride right alongside Owen.

I’ve been so focused on kindergarten readiness that it only recently dawned on me that Owen’s preschool years are finished. I think the graduation mixed with his best buddies moving on to a different school district made me more aware of how this current season is ending. I will admit that I am sad. While I am so excited for my big kid to take on kindergarten, I am sad that things are changing. Our schedule will be different next year. His friends will be different next year. A whole chapter of his childhood is ending and a new blank page is set and ready to unfold.

I saw an article shared on Facebook that said something along the lines of “I don’t want more kids, I just want more time with the kids that I have.” I didn’t read the article, but the statement resonated with me. I wish I could hit pause on this season where I have preschoolers. While I’ve dreamed of the days of having school aged kids so I could reclaim my life, I’ve found great joy through the preschool years. I’ve loved watching Owen learn and grow. I’ve loved nap time and flexible schedules and play dates. It’s been a good season. I feel the need to honor it and bless it for what it was. The next season might be even better than I can imagine (I hope so), but for now I will acknowledge the sadness mixed with gratitude that I feel for this ending.

Okay… on to the biggest BBQ ever. I mentioned in my last post that we were hosting a BBQ for my MOPS & MOMSnext group on Memorial Day. If everyone who RSVP’d showed up, we would of had 90 guests at our house. As it stands, I believe we had 77 people at our home on Monday. The weather was great which meant we were able to put our yard to good use. We had stations set up all over the yard for games and water play. Our long driveway worked well for parking all the vehicles without incident. If I was ever curious how many people we could host at our house, I now know we can host 80 comfortably (outside). I was nervous about preparing for 90 guests and then having no one show up. I figured that we were set with yard play and enough hamburgers/hot dogs to last us the summer. Even if no one showed up, we would have used all the items we bought in preparation of the event.

Now that Memorial Day & Preschool Graduation are behind us, we are looking forward to summer. I’ll be wrapping up my current MOPS & MOMSnext year by the middle of June. I want to finish strong so I’ll be focusing intently on this group while I continue to prepare for the new year ahead. The role of a MOPS coordinator really means I have no summer break from leadership. I’m already getting next year’s team lined up. We’ll have a leadership retreat at my house in July which also needs my attention. We’ll also have summer play dates each month. The first one is at the end of June. We’ll be having ice cream while playing at the church playground. Good times ahead.

It feels like summer is officially here. If my kids are home and awake, they are outside. Owen was given some sidewalk chalk by his teachers and he is excited to put it to good use today. We have bubbles galore on the back deck and plenty of space to run and play. Not to mention, we have chickens to check on and treats to feed them. We are ready for what’s next and excited for the future. Especially the immediate future – hopefully filled with lots of summer fun and family memories to be made!

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Play date and dinner with the cousins over the holiday weekend.

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Good old PNW tree huggers

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Add bubbles and it’s instant summer time vibes!

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Our MOPS & MOMSnext BBQ!

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Flowers from a lovely friend!

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Graduation Day! 

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Owen’s diploma and picture scrapbook

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My sweet preschooler!

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Owen and his buddies! The three amigos! I’m so grateful that Owen had such wonderful friends to spend this school year with. They will be missed! Luckily, we have a summer of play dates to keep the fun going. 

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