Saturday, July 6, 2013

Our Swimming Sensation

Our swimming sensation was a bit apprehensive going into her big finale.  At the beginning of the summer swim season, MK had her mind set on one thing - "I want to go to that meet that I went to last year that my boys didn't go to."  AKA Allstars. 
 So all season, she worked HARD.  She swam HARD.  And she was very proud to tell others that she swam with the big kids during practice, the only six year old to do so.  She meant business.  And not once did she complain.  
And her hard work paid off.  Out of 190 Freestyle female swimmers, age 6 and under, MK placed number 5!  AND, drum roll, out of 154 Backstroke female swimmers, age 6 and under, MK placed FIRST!  
(It is also good to note that MK placed first in both backstroke and freestyle in our divisional meet that includes four teams.  The Allstar meet includes all area teams, a total of 21 teams, and takes the top 20 swimmers for a final competition.)
I must got me last year and it got me this year, the emotion.  
I look at her, her competitive spirit, her determination to succeed, her goal-oriented mindset, and I can't help but tear up thinking of what her life would have been like had she not been deemed adoptable.  She would have never been given the opportunity to shine or even try to show off her capabilities.  Ever.  
Yet, today, at the age of 6, she is already defying the odds.  

Jeremiah 29:11
For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans for welfare and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope.

NC Mountains

 The best of both parents have a mountain cabin and Ryan's parents have a beach house.
 And each year, we spend a long weekend in the mountains, soaking up time on the ATVs, playing in the streams, tubing, strolling through the cute little town, eating at our favorite pancake house.....
 but this year was a bit different.  RAIN set in and our plans as we knew them were shot. Instead of doing the usual, we did the unusual and just relaxed.  
 Prior to the rain, our girls decided to give their seashells a bath....
 and Maddox cooked a bit with Pop's rocks and grass....her concoction was known to us as Rock Soup and she was more than proud of her invention.
 Sisters through and through....they are truly becoming the best of friends.
 And these four....our boys spent five days in the mountains with Gran and Pop prior to our arrival.  Oh how I missed them!  I have an admission to boys are 13 and 11and in all of their years, I have never put them into a car for more than a thirty minute ride with someone other than me or Ryan.  Ever.  Maybe I am a bit protective.  Maybe.
The memories.  Yes, we are fortunate to have two homes to retreat to throughout the year.  But even more so, our children have two vacation homes to build a lifetime of memories in as they grow.  I am pretty sure their days of Mexican Train and Solitaire and just everyday fun are going to sit with them forever!

Monday, July 1, 2013

Beauty Rest

Being the baby of four is hard work.  With Colin, Pryce and Mason-Kate, I was religious about making sure they had a nap each day no matter what.  As a result, I was never really able to see what life with a child who was experiencing a lack of sleep was like.  And then came Maddox.  Unfortunately, Maddox's naptime is not able to be the number one concern in our family.....between practices and youth outings and games or just good ole' family time, her nap can sometimes be overlooked.  And when it is, we see what life is like with a child who has not had her beauty rest.  Last week was just one of those occasions.  We had been to the pool.  We came home and Maddox was so tired yet in complete denial of her need for a nap.  She cried big tears as I told her to go to her room and wait for me to come read to her.  Literally, in one minute, our home went from wails to total silence.  I was putting a load of laundry in to dry and when I finished, I walked around to go upstairs to read to miss Maddox, and this is what I found on our stairs....Maddox Ren, fast asleep with all of her favorite snuggly things and two hairbows.  Total sweetness.