Friday, January 22, 2016

Better Late than Never!!

2015 was my worst year of blogging.  I just did not blog regularly. I did blog for the girls' birthdays and just a few other things. I planned to do a 2015 year in review about two days before the end of the year. Well, almost a month's that 2015 year in review.  I hope I have redeemed myself just a little bit.

January 2015
We rang in the new year by unpacking more boxes and finally getting settled in to our new home. We had a family get-together with the Thomas side of the family on MLK weekend.  The girls started selling GS cookies and we got used to a new normal.

February 2015
David and I went to see Kacey Musgraves in Durham for an early Valentine's treat.  I turned 42. David and Madeline went to West Virginia with the church youth group for the annual ski trip.     David was the (not-so)lucky bus driver.  They had LOTS of snow, even got stuck, but had a good time skiing.  We even got some snow in Smithfield which of course meant snow days and snow cream!
Off to ski

Stuck in the snow!

                                                                    Snow Cream!

March 2015
Lydia had her 11th camping themed birthday party at our house. It rained, but everyone still had a great time.    Madeline turned 13 and got a phone.  We spent that weekend in Myrtle Beach for a dance competition.  Lydia and David had fun at the Grand Spring Ball for Cotillion.

Blowing out the candles!


David and Lydia

She's a teenager!

                                                              They did great clogging!

Cousins waiting for church directory pics

April 2015
We welcomed and celebrated Easter and Spring Break.  We spent a nice day at Pullen Park with our friends and cousins.   I think there was another dance competition this month too.

Arranging flowers at church for the Flower Ministry.

Easter Sunday

                                                                      Fun at Pullen Park

More dance and dance recitals!  Margo had her 1st Grade field trip at Lazy-O Farms.   Madeline and Lydia completed Confirmation Class at church and were confirmed on Mother's Day. Lydia participated in the Piano Guild and got a Superior rating (small video clip of her warming up before going before the judges).   David and I spent a Saturday painting the shutters on our house.

                                           Finishing touches before going on stage

                                                                                   Wild Child!

                                                                              Dancing Sissies

                                                                             Margo & Addison


Grandma and Grandpa proud of their dancers!

                                                   Madeline clogging at Ham N Yam

                                                    My adult clogging class at the recital.

Piano Guild

                                                           Confirmands on Mother's Day

Loving on Grier


Crazy kids from Mrs. C's class

Top is the new paint job with front door painted--bottom what is was like when we moved in.

June 2015
Lydia had her 5th grade graduation.  The girls were excited about the last day of school which meant summer vacation and days spent at the pool.  David turned 41.  We spent a weekend in Charlotte/ Rock Hill for Madeline's national dance competition.  We celebrated Margo's birthday at American Girl and at the pool! Margo started gymnastics classes.

Family photo at Lydia's 5th grade graduation


                                                                     The graduate!

The dogs love to ride!

Sweet Annie girl

                                                                         Pool time!

I posted this on Facebook on Lydia's last day of elementary school!

                                                         Madeline at her end of year awards program.

                                                                             Birthday boy!

                                                                     Madeline's clogging team

Celebrating at AG!

                                                                          Happy Father's Day!


Just a weeeee bit excited!

Pool Party!




We clebrated the 4th of July with our annual neighborhood parade in South Smithfield.  We enjoyed our beach week at Pine Knoll Shores. We loved meeting up with friends and eating at our favorite restaurants.  As soon as we got home from the beach, it was back to school for Margo!


       Lots of Ladies!!! This was our first time using a selfie stick.  Fun times!

                                                                              Beach Babes

                                                                  With our friends the Westbrooks
                                                                        First day of 2nd Grade!

Margo started piano lessons.  Lydia went to Camp Don Lee with our neighbor Carrie.  David and Madeline went to CDL for family camp a few weeks later.  Madeline and Lydia went back to school. It was Lydia's first day of middle school.

                                                            Lydia with her camp counselor
                                                              Sailing with Carrie and friends
Lydia had fun but was very tired when we picked her up.  She said she actually got a little homesick and missed us.

Madeline sailing a sunfish solo.

                                                                             With Mr. Buddy :-)

                                         My middle schoolers on the first day of 8th and 6th grade

David and I took a trip to Nashville, Tennessee for a few days.  We enjoyed all things touristy and hearing lots of good music. We would love to go back!  Lydia bridged from a Junior to Cadette Girl Scout.
                                    In front of the much history in that building!

                                                                Country Music Hall of Fame

                                                                  My Cadette Girl Scout

We celebrated our18th wedding anniversary on Sunday, October 11th.  We went to church and when we came home, we were very shocked to see that the huge oak tree in our back yard had FALLEN!!! Luckily no one was hurt and there was no damage to our property, house, etc.  It was really a blessing because the tree was rotting and we knew it needed to go.  We hated to see it go because it was a beautiful tree and provided lots of shade and character (it was at leas a couple hundred years old). God took care of it for us.  I don't think we will forget that anniversary.  The girls and all the neighborhood kids had a blast playing on it for a few weeks until we got it cleaned up.   Later in the month we took a weekend trip to the mountains with our friends the Stanfords.  We rented a cabin and just enjoyed spending time together.  It really was a fun and relaxing weekend.  We ended the month with the Fall Festival at church and Halloween.
                                  18 years of marriage....quite the anniversary gift we got!

           This was a great cabin and we had a beautiful weekend in the NC mountains.
                                               Our family with Walter, Valerie and Merin

                 Trunk or Treat!  I made these Peanuts cutouts to decorate our van for Trunk of Treat.

                                                    Harley-Quinn, Minnie, and a flight attendant.

                                       Lydia with cousins Brayden and Connor.... Joker and Batman

                                                         Jack makes the perfect Hot Dog!
                  These tweens and teens had fun handing out candy and going to a haunted house!

My daddy celebrated his 75th birthday.  He had a rough year with a knee replacement that didn't want to heal....melanoma diagnosis and more surgeries.  Thankfully, his melanoma didn't spread and he doesn't have to have any further treatments.  We are hoping 2016 will be better for him.   Lydia fractured her wrist doing front handsprings at gymnastics and was in a cast for 6 weeks.  We finally got a garbage disposal installed and gas logs for the back den.  We continued with other home improvements and hosted Thanksgiving at our house.

                                                              The girls with PaPa

                                                        A very long night in the ER
                                     A purple cast and a milkshake......She was happy!

                                                       Pinterest inspired centerpiece

                                                                          Dining Room


                                                                  The Thanksgiving Spread!
                                                                   Turkey fruit tray

I guess we were all too busy engaging in conversation.  I failed to get any pictures of the family....maybe next year!

December was very busy with Christmas celebrations.  There were lots of church and school events. I broke my pinky toe three days before Christmas by opening the back door to let the dogs out....oooww-eee. The weather was unseasonably warm at Christmas, but Santa still found us. It was a good year and we are extremely blessed.

Margo's first Sunday as acolyte.  This was also the first Sunday of Advent.  I think this was actually the last Sunday in November.
                She did great!  She will have lots of opportunity to acolyte over the next several years.  I'm glad that all of our girls have been able to serve our church as acolytes.
                                                               Breakfast with Santa at church
                                                   I wonder what these two are giggling about.
                                               My dancers ready for the Smithfield Christmas parade.
                                                            Lydia did great at her first band concert.
The girls participated in Journey to Bethlehem at our church.  Everyone did a great job.  It was a great production!
Jack and Annie in their Christmas attire for carpool on the last day of pickup before Christmas break.

                                                  Annual Night Before Christmas pic on the stairs.

                                                         Christmas morning!  Santa showed up!

                                                         The girls had Caroline over for a sleepover.

                   We had our little friend Merin visit us for several days after Christmas.  She's a mess!

We spent New Year's Eve at the Miuras.  Chris made egg rolls and lots of other good Japanese cuisine.  It was fun to get together with old friends and ring in the new year.

January 2016
So far January has been off to a great start.  We are knee deep in Girl Scout Cookies.  Today we are having our first "Snow Day".  Right now we just have wet, icky weather but the girls are happy to have the day off.  We are sitting by the fire trying not to eat all the GS cookies, LOL!