first day of school

i truly had intent to post this well over a week ago but liiiiiiiiife. we were so busy leading up to our trip {i could name the 100 millions things we had to do and had going on but i’ll spare you} and i even brought my computer, with intent – again, to finish this post and publish while i was on vacation but that didn’t happen either {i’m a weirdo when it comes to unsecured wifi streams and won’t log into anything, so therefor, i didn’t log into my web account to finish this post! i should have known…}.

anyhoo, long intro to olive’s very short first day of school. i executed all the necessary preparations. i had pre-picked out her outfit, packed her backpack with the required essentials, filled out all her forms needed, and gathered all her school supplies the night before, amongst other things! olive was very excited for her first day of class this year! she loves going to school, she loves meeting new friends, and she loves to learn.

we got ready and we were all extra early. hc took ellie over to my parent’s house and no one was up and ready to go there! whaaaaaaa? we wanted to get to school early because one: the parking lot gets sooooo full and two: it’s her first day! we didn’t want to rush around and wanted it to be more relaxing and fun. my dad finally came out and hc ran out of the house like flash to come back and pick us up! we screeched the wheels on our way to school, of course the parking lot was fullllllll, and we were late – running our way into the building! ugh! what a start!

to top it off, i couldn’t remember what the classroom number was!! so there we were, walking back and forth, trying to figure it out. i ran upstairs to the office and they told me which room number it was and we slowly snuck into the room! we got called out and the teacher told me to come sit up front with the other parents, with olive and i obliged.

after the introductions and details of the how their day would look, the kids were given the green light to explore and of course, olive beelined for the doll house and barbies! after some time of playing, we circled back together for some final details and then everyone was dismissed!

we then took olive out to breakfast to celebrate her first official day of class. it’s the little things like this, that make me happy and i hope it makes olive happy too! i love making certain occasions and moments in life special. i really hope that actions like this will positively resonates with olive.

it was a great start to the school year and a wonderful start to our morning! we loved having hc there to make events like these whole. although, i had a #momfail moment later on in the day when i completely forgot to take them to their gymnastics class! heyyyy, you win some, you lose some. hahahaha!!

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[my girl]

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[she was being so silly…she kept dancing all over the place!]

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[mean mugging]

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[i love her]

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[always so somber and cautious]

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[going for the doll house and dollies]

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[she loves this doll!]

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[drawing at breakfast, getting ready to eat her rainbow pancakes!]

xoxo

kim’s 29th birthday!

we celebrated kim’s birthday this past weekend at pacific standard time, a restaurant of her choice.

so, funny story…i had text hc about our reservation time and confusion ensued. here’s our conversation {modified for your enjoyment}.

me: dinner is at 5 at pacific standard time

hc: 5? downtown? well, if you really think about it, 5pm is really 7pm cst but it’s still cutting it close to get to the restaurant.

me: hun, pacific standard time is the name of the restaurant. thuy wasn’t confused when she said the dinner reservations were at 5 at pacific standard time.

bahahahahahaha!

we all, almost, arrived on time {thuy was a bit behind}. our time was well spent drinking tasty libations and lively conversations between us before we placed our order. our server was detailed and encouraging during our time there. i loved how passionate she was about the menu, the food, and her astounding memory! she absorbed our appetizer {and we ordered a lot} and entree order with no glitches. everything came as specified and i was impressed!

we ohhh’d and ahhhh’d over our meals, we shared plates, and became giddy as our tastebuds were delighted! everyone throughly enjoyed kim’s cod…yes, that was written out comically, but we really loved her fish! it was my, and most, favorite dish!

the food kept on coming and we merrily passed along each plate to consume everything in sight. as our belly’s filled up, our evening out together dwindled. our server then brought out a surprise dessert for kim’s birthday – we awkwardly sang happy birthday and kim angrily blew out her candle {you would have to have seen my instagram story to understand}, and we cheered!

after dinner, we took a few pics outside and enjoyed the gorgeous warm temps. warm summer nights are an absolute favorite of mine! it was a wonderful time out celebrating my sister kim! happy birthday kimberdo!

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[pacific standard time]

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[ma seours]

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[lan. agata, and dan]

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[kim’s amazing cod, like, seriously…it was sooooooo good]

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[the half eaten delicious pappardelle]

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[this dessert was decadent and delicious]

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[happy birthday kim!]

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xoxo

new bed frame

it’s almost time for ellie to transition into a ‘big’ girl bed…we are hemming and hawing over when it’s the right time. for olive, we had no choice with ellie on her way but honestly, it was the perfect time for her. it really was. she was absolutely ready at 2.5 years old! now ellie has 4 more months until she hits that mark but i have a feeling it will be another couple months after that for her.

we were so excited to receive this amazing, new bed from delta children. it’s their lindsey model and it’s absolutely perfect, aesthetically, for our current decor. we weren’t sure which girl’s room we were going to put it in. like i said previously, ellie wasn’t ready…so, we felt it would be perfect in olive’s room. plus, she was adamant that we put it in her room! she saw the new bed frame being delivered and asked us if it was her new bed.

only on one condition…coming from hc. to be transparent, olive has been sleeping in our bed for over a year. yes. i said it. over a year. i really loved it. i did. previously, i have always thought…noooooo, no kids in the bed! absolutely not. nope. not gonna happen. and then it did. one night olive asked to sleep in our bed. ok…then the next night, then the next night, then…one year later and i loved every minute of it. i stared at her. i hugged her. i loved waking up next to her. it was so blissful to me. i missed sharing a bed with hc but i was a bit obsessed with olive being right next to me. but i knew it needed to end at some point. i just didn’t know when…every time we asked olive to sleep in her bedroom, she firmly said no. until the new bed frame arrived…

so, hc assembled it and voilá! a pretty bed frame that transformed olive’s room into a ‘princess’ room. her choice of word. we really love it! it looks perfect in her room, it’s well made, and olive is ecstatic over her new sleeping arrangement! we kept her old sheets and decor…i am too obsessed with her pillows to replace them, but the height and design of the frame gives her room a fun refresh!

the night her new bed was set up in her room, she was so excited to sleep in it. hc and i weren’t sure if it was really going to happen and then it did. to be honest, i cried. i did. that night, i read her a bedtime story and cried. i was super sad, like really sad. i felt like we were breaking up and i was being abandoned. i was sad to not see her sweet face first thing in the morning and get the hugs and good mornings and snuggles. it hit me hard that she is growing up and this was just another milestone that was harder on mama than on her.

anyhoo, i am super happy to have my lovely hubby right next to me. don’t get me wrong…that’s exactly how it should be but that little journey that i had next to olive every morning, i wouldn’t trade that for anything. i am so happy we were able to have that sweet moment in our lives, even if it was short {but long according to hc} lived time.

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[such a perfect bed!]

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[she loooooooooooves her new bed!]

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[love the little details]

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[always posing]

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[it’s in the details]

xoxo

hb bennett!

my sister kim and her husband, terry, coordinated a birthday dinner for bennett’s ninth birthday. bennett really wanted to do hibachi, so benihana’s it was!

we all met at the restaurant {we were running behind due to our – mine and kim’s – haircut appointment in the city…i barely made it home to get ready, finished decorating bennett’s present, and ran out the door, with the family, to the restaurant}, we were a little late. they wouldn’t seat everyone until we got there! phew…we were 15 minutes behind…so not too bad but not good.

once we were seated…the usual routine ensued. i ordered a lychee cocktail and decided on the seafood entrée. when the chefs came and started their entertainment…olive was mesmerized!!! she giggled and squealed and looooooooved every second of it! she was sooo darn cute! i couldn’t take my eyes off of her! it was so cute to watch!

we then sang happy birthday to bennett, the kids were running around, and we all just relaxed and mingled. it was super nice we had side by side tables in the corner of the restaurant. it’s secluded and perfect when you have a large crowd and rowdy kids!

dinner was delicious and we were having such a great time! once everything wrapped up, we all decided to head on over to everyday’s a sundae for some ice cream. it was a perfect night for that. the temp was perfect and everyone really enjoyed themselves. we hung out, the kids played, and we ate yummy ice cream!

it was such a perfect evening together. we had a wonderful time celebrating bennett’s birthday and created beautiful summer memories together!

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[waiting to get my hair done…it was a mess that day!]

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[waiting nook]

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[got my hair did and checking out]

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[dad and mom]

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[the birthday boy with his brother]

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[adoringly looking at bennett]

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[cheers! lychee cocktail]

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[where’ ellie?]

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[kim, ellie, and terry]

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[barbara and lynne]

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[birthday boy, make a wish]

via tandeminlove.comvia tandeminlove.com[be prepared for a series of this]

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[peeking at mama]

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[she’s so sweet]

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[goofballs]

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[yum yum! ellie loved the ice cream]

xoxo

day date

hc and i needed to find counter stools and we decided to make a day date out of it. my dear sister, thuy, kindly decided to watch the girls for us! we were so excited to have an afternoon with just the two of us.

we headed out to wrigleyville to a favorite brunch spot, southport grocery. we walked in and the hostess said, “it’s a 30 minute wait.” okaaaayyyyyy. we looked around and there were 4 tables open. yes, there could have been other people on the waiting list in front of us but there was a table in front of the window that was open, that we noticed, and when they text us that our table was ready {20 minutes later}, they seated us in that same table that was open. huhhhhh? ok, and maybe some people in front of us on the waiting list didn’t come back but highly unlikely!

anyhoo, we sat down and ordered drinks right away. some sort of old-fashioned drink for hc and a mimosa for moi! i was a bit bummed that they changed some of the ingredients in the omelette that i usually ordered {but i love that they keep it seasonal}, so i went rogue. i ended up ordering the avo toast and i think i have a new favorite! it was so yummy and the perfect amount of food!

after brunch, hc and i headed over to wrightwood furniture to shop for some counter stools. we knew what we wanted but you never know if you’ll like it until you see it! initially, we liked it but we wanted to walk around and peruse the shop, just in case we might like something else more! well, we came back to the original stool and closed the deal. we walked away with the stools we needed and once we got them home and put them in place, we looooooved them! they are a perfect addition to our kitchen!

after being out and about all day, we all stayed in for the evening. hc concocted a yummy app plate of hummus and other delicious dips right before he cooked a wonderful dinner for us!

what a day! it was lovely, perfect, and fun; our evening in together was just what we needed to end the night!

via tandeminlove.com[avo toast…so good!!!]

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[puppy dog eyes]

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[mimosa]

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[hc trying to take a pic of me but focusing on the flatware instead]

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[hc put together this yummy app plate before he started cooking dinner!]

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xoxo

grace’s birthday

we celebrated grace’s birthday with a dinner night out with family.

as i wrote in the previous post…we had a really long day out and ended up going from my sister’s family work party and visiting my brother’s place to dinner afterwards. we were hoping to head home, give ellie a nap, and change our clothes for this birthday celebration for grace, but none of that happened!

c’est la vie! we left dan and agata’s place to head to the restaurant and arrived a little bit early but everyone was already there! we ran into grace and family in the parking lot and saw dick, jane, and wendy at the bar.

we were seated right away and socialized with one another as the server did her job taking drink orders, apps, etc. i ordered a delicious but very strong rosé drink. olive and anabel got along so well. ellie just clung to me or hc and we chitchatted amongst each other until the food came. i ordered the scallops and risotto and it was very good! i was pleasantly surprised. i have never eaten at this chain restaurant, season’s 52, {i’m not a fan of chain restaurants} but it was surprisingly good!

we celebrated grace, sang happy birthday to her, showered her with gifts and love, and we all had a wonderful evening together. it was such a great time with everyone, we never really get to go out, sit down, and really spend time with one another. i mean, we all see different parts of this group separately but it was nice to have us all together…not just shuffling kids back and forth or going from point a to point b!

happy birthday beautiful grace! you are growing into a strong, sweet, smart women! we love you!

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[rich and grace]

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[papa, gramma, and aunt wendy]

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[grace and edwin]

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[anabel and olive]

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[pilar and jay]

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[rosé lemonade]

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[grace and moi]

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[make a wish!]

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xoxo

family day at northrop

 my sister, thuy, had invited us to join her for her work’s family event!

we all agreed to go and then my brother, dan and his girlfriend agata, had invited us over to their place after the family event!

the original plan for that day was this – hc was going to go to the cubs game and i was going to the event with just the girls and then to dan and agata’s place afterwards. well, hc ended up not going to the cubs game and then made plans to go out that evening for grace’s birthday. i thought, ok, we can do this. we probably won’t stay that long at thuy’s work event and we were going over to dan’s for a late lunch.

of course i rationalized that all in my head without really asking anyone what our real time frame was going to be. so, on this day…we had definitely underestimated our time and over scheduled ourselves. i didn’t expect to stay as long as we did at the family event, i didn’t expect to get to dan’s so late, i didn’t want to rush out {we were seeing their beautiful town home for the first time}, and hc and i didn’t plan on not going home to give ellie a nap and change our clothes for dinner that evening! it also meant a lot of driving around for us. we were in a pickle. so we decided that we were going to stay at dan’s and go to dinner from there…casual clothes, grumpy ellie, and all.

well, it all turned out wonderfully. thuy’s work event was fun! pictures were not allowed inside, so when we went outside to the ice cream trucks, i snapped a gazillion pics! the family event was great – they had bozo buckets, fun activities for the kiddos, food, balloon animals, face painting, free hats, and many other goodies! we perused the gift shop and i bought the coolest bomber jackets for olive and ellie! ellie wore hers and received so many compliments!

after the family event, we cruised on over to dan and agata’s place. their town home is so nice! i loved how fresh and modern it looked inside. they were cooking burgers and had delicious sides for us to eat. it was all so very good! agata’s mom made an app and a decadent dessert for all of us as well! it was all very relaxing and fun.

we could have stayed for another couple hours but alas, we needed to head out to get to our dinner plans. it was such a fun and eventful day seeing where thuy worked and where dan lived! i will have more on our dinner gathering in my next post!

[we bought this bomber jacket in the gift store. so many people complimented her on it!]

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[best face paint artist i ever did see]

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[rocking her cool bomber jacket]

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[they had ice cream trucks

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[i love that smile]

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[ice cream time]

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[my girls]

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[hats required]

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[playing with play doh]

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[mom and agata]

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[twinning bromance]

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[mom and ellie]

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[thuy and mom]

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[ba with his boys]

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[kim, ellie, and moi]

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[my sister kim throwing ellie up in the air]

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[agata and dan]

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[fresh fruit dessert made by agata’s mom]

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[having fun with agata]

xoxo

brunch with friends

we don’t get to see these two guys very often…but when we do, it’s always so fun and feels like we did just see each other!

we’ve eaten at band of bohemia before and we liked it so much that we needed to go there again! matt made reservations for us and shockingly, hc and famille actually arrived early! it’s a hit or miss for us…usually it’s a miss but once in a blue moon, we will actually have our act together and get out the door on time!

we arrived early and snapped some fun pics and sashayed our way inside. they seated us right away but within minutes, johann and matt showed up! we ordered copious amounts of libations, perused the menu, and settled on our choices. we chitchatted and took care of ellie, cause she’s high maintenance. she’s such a wiggle worm. she doesn’t like unfamiliar enviromments and will only want us to hold her but she can’t sit still so it’s like a flippin’ wrestling match with this little chunker.

after we ate, olive asked us if she could play over by the waiting area. it has a record player, music blasting, games, comfy couches and chairs, and it’s a perfect play area for these babes. i was a bit hesitant because i didn’t want her to go by herself {we could still see her if she went} but i didn’t want to sit over there with her because we were still visiting with matt and johann. we asked her to wait a bit longer and she complied. after 10 minutes {it probably feels like an eternity to a kid} she asked again and i let her go.

our brunch turned into a 2.5 hour long event, as usual. is it me? is it us? is it hc’s doing {ha probably not!}? it seems like whenever i meet up with my friends, we can gaaaaaaaab for hours and hours. hmmmm, i think it’s me. hahahaha!

anyhoozle, it was definitely a fab time together. the drinks were tasty, the bites were good but the company was even better. until next time my dear friends!

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[ellie always giving the side eye]

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[cheers!]

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[ellie always needing to be in one of our arms]

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[the prettiest, cutest bagel and lox i ever did see]

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[johann, hc, and ellie]

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[she’s the silliest girl]

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xoxo

another pool day

pool time has become our summer day staple. i am so happy we joined a neighborhood pool. it’s the greatest solve for too hot summer days!

on this day, i got the girls ready, not as early as i was hoping for because we love to sleep in! we had a very, very late and slow morning. these summer nights and mornings have been so late, late, late! late nights and very late mornings! i am definitely enjoying it though!

i rounded them up, my little sassy gals, and headed to the pool. not many folks hit up the kids pool so it’s nice and not crowded for us when we are there. it’s only when they have adult swim, do all the older kids come barreling into the pool. yikes!

when we first got there, ellie was in complete observe mode. it was hilarious to watch her. she just strutted around and stared at everyone through her pineapple shades. what a little diva! her chunky thighs and cheeks and the sunglasses that didn’t fit the nose bridge she doesn’t have, was so glorious to see. hahaha!

we decided to bring a bag of toys with us, this time, but that was a big mistake. each time adult swim happened, it resulted in a large group of kids raging into the baby pool, then quickly dissipating, but slowly, each time, the girl’s toys would disappear. so with each adult swim, by the time we left the pool, olive and ellie had two fishes left out of their whole spread of toys. olive lost her fishing net, her tinker bell doll, her nemo toys, and so forth. wah wahhhh.

after lunch and some more swimming, we headed back home. after giving the girls a bath, my sister called me and asked if olive could go to the pool with her cousins. oy vey. well of course! so i dressed her in another swim suit and out the door she went for another early evening of fun!

happy summer days!

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[dancing fools]

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[i love these babes]

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[she was cracking me up! she looked like this the whole ride to the pool]

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[but seriously. i can’t even with her]

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[not impressed]

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[dem cheeks]

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[lunch time]

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[beotch, don’t even]

xoxo

swim class

we enrolled olive into swim class, again {she started over a month ago, in early june}. she took classes when she was two? i think she was two, maybe a little older than that but not by much. we, unfortunately, stopped after that. i highly recommend any parent to always continue with lessons once you start and start early. your kids will most likely be more confident, not so afraid of the water, and more advanced in their skills.

olive’s first lesson was tough. she was afraid, didn’t understand some of the trainer’s concepts, and was super timid with trying anything that caused water to touch her face. um, that’s a problem.

her coach was great, though. she was super patient, kind, and really supported olive in the way she needed it. i was happy with her style and happy to see olive attempt a few things she wasn’t feeling confident about.

we wanted ellie to try out swim lessons too but that was a complete debacle. she didn’t want to be in the water and clung to hc and cried. oh well, there’s always next year for this little girl! we all attended olive’s first lesson…ya know those firsts! it’s always special in our books! of course i watched from the sidelines while olive practiced and hc carried ellie around in the pool. after olive’s first lesson, we needed to head back to get after the plans we had for the day.

overall, it was a good first day of lessons. i am hoping that she gets her aha moment and progresses quickly! it’s so important to me that she becomes a strong swimmer! for my sanity and for her safety! so, here’s to a good run for the rest of the summer!

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[she’s about to start!]

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[kicking the legs]

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[ellie wasn’t not into swim lessons at alllll]

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[her attempts at jumping into the pool!]

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[we got a smile!]

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[me and my clingy babe]

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[we were all twinning the RWB!]

xoxo