Wednesday, December 30, 2015

IPhone Pics of the Season

Christmas prep began with three little helpers.....
 Maddox had a painting party to attend.....she is quite the artist!
 St Nicklaus Day....goodies are left in each shoe overnight....Matthew the elf was keeping watch on their goodies!
 MK was feeling better on this day following her surgery.  She asked to play her favorite game ever, Monopoly Pet Shop.  I love the light in this pic....very symbolic of her gradual healing.
 Our dear friends surprised us one evening with Starbucks for everyone!  So sweet!  Pretty sure Maryn wore most of hers:/
 A Christmas Carol = one of our traditions.  We LOVE going to see this show each Christmas season!
 Shopping with Maryn....never a dull moment.
 Santa and his reindeer?
 Our day at the mall, which technically happens once each year, turned into an amusement park day.  The girls road on these animal cars, then they caught a train, we ate all kinds of foods at the food court and then we had pictures taken with Santa.
 So fun watching these kiddos thoroughly enjoy themselves!
 All five kiddos....and all five still go willingly for this pic.  So thankful!  
 Of course, this may be my favorite pic of the 2015 season!
 Pryce escorting his Social partner into the Christmas formal....and then there is that Spencer in the middle!  Thankfully, we love him!
 One week post-op and MK was up and ready to paint the night away with her cousin Emma at Smocks.  Such a great job!
 A house full of middle and high school kiddos celebrating the Christmas season together....
 Maryn and her ballet teacher....she loves ballet and all of the twirling she has learned!
 MK was on homebound instruction following her surgery for the month of December.  We are so thankful for her teacher, Ms. Fortino, and her willingness to teach MK in our home each week.  She is fabulous and it made MK feel so special!
 Matthew the Elf is one of my favorite little things to find each morning during the month of December.  He is always up to something!
 An evening at the zoo....
 joined by friends and cousins!
 Lights of the South....MK and Chloe....
 Our crew....the Mohrs, the Popes and us!
 Maddox and Brooklyn, these two are awesome together!
 So sweet and such good friends!
 The littles met Elsa at Ryan's Christmas party....
 Ho, Ho, Ho!  Maryn jumped right into his lap.  Amazing, considering she wanted nothing to do with him at any other time of the season!
 Christmas Eve Pedicures for all.....
 The girls love their mini chairs with tablets while the boys relax in the large massaging chairs....
 this little one observed the entire process....she was not having anything to do with sitting in a chair and getting her nails done!
 Christmas Eve service at our church....such peace.  
 And two Shenzhen thankful for these two!  

Sunday, December 27, 2015

A Whole Lotta Dancin Going On

December was full of dancing and singing with our kiddos.  Pryce was first up with his Social Christmas dance. 
 Pryce and his partner, Kaylee, have been friends since they were 5 years old and in Kindergarten together.  We have always loved their friendship and we are thankful that they get to experience Social together this year.  
 Our littlest ballerina....
 She really is the cutest little ballerina.....
 those cheeks, and those lips, and those perfect!
 Oh, and her lively personality....she is full of fun!
 And our little Maddox Ren....
 this girl loves all things performing.....
she is our girl who believes in all things make-up and dress-up..... 
 and dancing....
 Maryn is in preschool this year and she had her first-ever little Christmas program....she did so well!  She sang a little, waved a little, smiled a little, and just stood there a little....really sweet!
 And Maddox was just made for the stage....she knew every word of every song and every movement to go along with it!  She is the go-to girl in her class!
 We were so thankful to have Gran and Pop here to watch our girls!  

Sunday, December 13, 2015

And Update on our FIVE

2015 has proven to be a year of change in our family.  Good change.  Needed change. 
A breath of fresh air.
He began school as a sophomore in a "real" school setting.  Having been homeschooled since 4th grade, he was a bit hesitant yet excited to see what school had to offer.  One semester in, he would likely tell you that school is school.  Not horrible yet not that exciting either.  Academically, he is thriving.  Socially, he went from our home to one of the largest schools in the state with thousands of kiddos of all sizes and personalities - hard stuff.  We are so proud of him for rising to the occasion.  He was honored for making all A's for the year, he was invited to swim on the swim team - he fought this a bit but has thoroughly enjoyed being on a winning team, he has joined a club or two, and he has only slept through his alarm once!  (And he has only gotten to school without his shoes once!:))  Colin was also chosen to be a part of our Cotillion Dance Club.  He loves his time on the dance floor.  Ryan and I both have two left feet so we are quite thankful he did not acquire our genes in this department!
Seventh grade is treating him well.  He is officially the only homeschooled child in our home this year and he is loving it!  He even loves having the freedom to make whatever he wants for lunch each day and have some quiet time in our home.  I worried that he would be a bit bored without having Colin around but he has risen to the occasion and taken on more responsibilities like a champ! He embraces his time with the two littles after their school day ends and even puts Maryn down for her nap!  (He has it down to a tee so we let him run with it.)  He is our baseball player through and through.  He is a bike riding, video making, friend loving fool.  He recently traveled to China with me for a mission trip and loved every moment of his time spent in the country that is so dear to our hearts.  He is also participating in his first year of Social Dance Club and though he had hesitations before it began, now he is LOVING his time dancing the night away with his friends! 
This girl.  Where to begin....she is amazing!  After homeschooling her for two years, we chose to give school a try....and she is LOVING it!  Socially, it is a great fit for this beautiful girl!  She loves the responsibilities and the opportunities for the busy work that school has to offer.  Her teachers are fabulous and each cater to a different part of her personality, which we love!  We were thrilled to learn that she will participate in the gifted program beginning in January - the challenges she will love!  She does ballet two evenings each week and she is the epitome of grace.  She recently endured her third surgery to repair her cleft....we are so thankful this is behind us and we are even more thankful that she is recovering beautifully!
Maddox Ren
Our kindergarten, school-loving, reading like a wiz girl.  She is my girl - the girl that always fits best just snuggled up next to me!  She has announced several times recently that she will not be going to college unless she can live with me!  Bless.  I hope she always wants to be so close to me!  Maddox is all about learning....whether she is at school or at the doctor with a sibling, she is asking questions and ready to learn!  While visiting the ENT, she took it upon herself to take a look at Maryn's ears through the otoscope and diagnose her ear infection - incredible!  She even described what the inside of Maryn's ear looked like to the doctor!  She grasps on to life with excitement and often doesn't look back.  She is full speed ahead in what she encounters and she always has something kind to say to others.  
Maryn Gentry
This sweet face is a bundle of personality.  When she is happy, she is soooo happy.  When she is sad, there is little that can be done to make her not sad aside from giving her whatever it is that she is wanting.  She is diplomatic - most always saying that she loves her mommy AND her daddy.  She loves candy, gum, applesauce and yogurt - in that order!  And she dislikes anything that remotely looks scary from bugs to Santa Clause.  She is taking ballet and is the most precious ballerina in her class.  She always comes out of her class shouting, "MOMMMY!!!" and it makes my heart smile to know she has me to run to!  She is going to preschool three days a week.....she has a love/hate relationship with this.  She goes in screaming most days but comes out smiling always!  She is a treasure to all of us!
My Fabulous FIVE
My life, my joy and my heart!