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Clara's Closet I

Tuesday, August 8, 2017
Some of the best parts of having a little girl are the bows, dresses, and ruffles. It has been an absolute joy to fill Clara's closet with tiny and precious garbs and dress her each day. It might be a little (or not so little) obsession. :)

Thankfully if you do it right, you can sell boutique clothes when you are finished wearing them for what you paid (plus some if you are lucky) to fund the next season. So it is kind of a revolving closet. I put that caveat in there for when Clara reads this years from now and thinks I am crazy (or for anyone else who might think that)...and I will own that perhaps I am a little bit.

Regardless I am going to periodically do some posts collecting some of her recent OOTDs (outfits of the day) for posterity sake. Feel free to keep on scrolling if baby girl clothes are not your thing.

Bubble: Well Dressed Wolf (Josie)

Bow: Livieloos

Dress: Nelly Madison (Birthday Cupcake Hannah)
Bow: Livieloos

Dress: Omi Jo (Vintage Floral Market)
Bow: Livieloos

Bubble: Kelly's Kids

Dress: Anavini Baby

Dress: Well Dressed Wolf (Creamsicle Maddie)

Tunic Set: Well Dressed Wolf (Lucy Tunic)

Dress: Nelly Madison (Country Rose Blooms Hannah)

Dress: Omi Jo (Periwinkle Dancer)

First Day of Pre-K

Monday, August 7, 2017

And just like that summer is done and school is officially back in session. And we have a big pre-kindergartener. Pre-K sounds so big! I can't believe we just have one more year before Perry is in elementary school.

Perry is in Ms. Carter's class this year at Mayfair and he is loving it. He has lots of friends in his class, but misses his friends that ended up in other classes (Alex in particular). At least all the kids get to play together on the playground and see each other at lunch. This year they will be working on reading, writing and math. I can't wait to see what all Perry learns and accomplishes in pre-k. 

Daddy went to work a little late so that we could all go to Mayfair together, but not before we took our traditional front porch first day of school pictures...and hit up Dunkin Doughnuts for a little breakfast.

Baby sister is staying home this year with sweet family and friends, but she had to get in on the apple wearing action too. This precious little romper arrived last week from some sweet genetic counseling colleagues in Australia. So cute!

June Round-up

Monday, July 3, 2017
Beyond of the big and exciting things that warrant their own post on the blog, there are lots of little moments that fill up the rest of our little family's life. And they need a home here too...because those everyday memories are some of the sweetest. So here is a look back through the month of June.

1. Perry worked on his writing and word skills. After asking how to spell the word "England" he proudly presented this piece of paper where he had written a complete sentence all by himself. And much to his dismay...Alex is still in England but will be back soon.

2. Perry had his end of the t-ball season party where he finally got his much anticipated participation trophy. Here he is with his coach Brandi. He had a great time with his fellow Ninjalinos this season. He says he wants to play again next year, but after he plays soccer this fall.

3. We have resurrected our summer tradition of Sunday night pizza and pool nights with sweet friends.

4. Miss Clara had her two month check up and she is doing awesome! This was right after her traumatic first set of shots. She took them like a champ.

5. We met up with Papaw (and Aunt T and Aunt Kay) for lunch at Mellow Mushroom after preschool one day.

6. Perry and I had a mommy/son date to Big Spring Park to feed the ducks, and geese, and fish.

7. Perry got a subscription to the Clubhouse Jr magazine from Granna, and it makes for good reading on the commute to preschool in the mornings. Talk about looking like a big kid...

8. If you read Perry's half birthday interview in the previous post you know that his favorite outside pastime is playing on his playground. We have done plenty of that this summer.

9. We had a fun cookout over at the Garretts house and Perry is getting better and better at holding his baby sister. Largely because baby sister is getting better and better at holding her own head up. 

10. While the Eckleys were out of town we went to go check on and play with Sam the cat a couple of times. 

11. We went to the EarlyWorks childrens museum one morning and got to meet Chase from Paw Patrol.

12. And we did a little crafting with footprints and paint to make a tribute to some of our favorite super heros for daddy. This picture is missing the finishing touches I did with a Sharpie, but you get the idea. From left to right Clara's feet are Superman and Iron Man, and Perry's feet are Batman and Spiderman.

Interview with a 4.5 year old

Happy half birthday sweet boy! Today Perry turns 4.5 years old and is officially closer to 5 than he is 4. I don't know where my baby and toddler have gone but he looks and talks so much like a big kid these days....and it is so fun. I love driving in the car playing games like "I am thinking of a disney character" and "naming the letter that all the things we see start with." And discussing the words and meanings behind all the signs we pass. He loves telling jokes (and thanks to the Easter bunny he has some books with real jokes in them now rather than the totally ridiculous ones he was making up), solving math problems, writing words...he is learning so much every day. And most of the time is an absolute joy to be around. The rest of the time? Yes he sometimes likes to prove that he is most definitely still a kid that doesn't like to not get his way.

Every year since he has been old enough to talk we have done the same little interview with him on his half birthday. It has been fun to see how his answers have changed over the years. Take a look back at his 3.5 year old interview and 2.5 year old interviews.

Without further adieu here is our interview with 4.5 year old Perry...

What is your name: Perry

How old are you: four

What color is your hair: Red

Who are your friends: Hunter, Alex, Greg, Ms. Laura, Adeline, and God

Who is your best friend: Alex

What is your favorite food: Pancakes

What is your favorite drink: Gatorade

What is your favorite color: Green

What is your favorite animal: Chameleon

What is your favorite thing to watch on TV: PJ Masks

What is your favorite song: the PJ Masks song...well I like all kinds of songs

What is your favorite book: my dinotrucks books

What is your favorite thing to do inside: play a game

What is your favorite thing to do outside: play on my playground equipment (yes he said equipment lol)

What does your mom say: listen and obey

What does your dad say: the same thing as mom

What do you want to be when you grow up: an astronaut and a zoo keeper

Yep we have gained some new friends, lots of new favorites, and a new future occupation from last year. I personally love that God made his friends list. And that he apparently he wants to be a zoo keeper in space. :)


Tennessee and It's Aquarium

Tuesday, June 20, 2017

This past weekend for Fathers Day we went up the road to Chattanooga for a night to see the sights, eat some good food, and spend time together as a family (see previous post for our Sunday fun there). We loaded up Saturday morning (including all the stuff you need to travel with a 7 week old) and headed north. We of course had to stop at the Tennessee state line to document Clara's entry into a second new state (Florida was the first...more on that later). She is doing good on her travel bucket list in her short little life so far. 

Perry really loves fish, whales, and other critters of the water so we knew he would love the aquarium. And of course he did. We have been before but not in quite a while. We all had fun playing together, looking at all the animals and enjoying an attraction that was indoors and in air conditioning away from the summer heat. For a moment we had flirted with the idea of going to a zoo instead for the weekend but quickly came to our (climate controlled loving) senses.

Perry's favorite animals of the day were the penguins (what he said he was most looking forward to on our way there), sharks, lion fish, and sea dragons. Walking around the aquarium we were impressed by his knowledge of all things sea creatures. Thank you Disney for Octonauts. 

We successfully caught a butterfly on our hands and Perry got to touch a live snake. He has a relatively new interest in all things creepy crawly (spiders, snakes, etc) but has a healthy dose of fear too. We were shocked when he walked right up to that snake and touched it. Only after he clarified that it was not poisonous with the handler of course. He is turning into such a big kid.

Clara did a lot of hanging out in her stroller snoozing, but did enjoy getting out and looking at the fish some. And I can't forget to give a shout out (or a head shake) to the man in the aquarium elevator that looked at her (dressed as seen below) and called her a boy. Seriously...bow...fluffy bubble smocked outfit? Oy.

Between the aquarium, the creative discovery children's museum and all the amazing food we ate it was an awesome Fathers Day weekend away. We often forget how close we are to Chattanooga when we are thinking of places to go for a weekend and we need to get up there more often than we do.

Chattanooga Creative Discovery Museum

Monday, June 19, 2017

This past Sunday we spent the day playing at the Creative Discovery Museum in Chattanooga, TN. It was awesome. We thought that Perry might be at the perfect age for this kind of thing...and boy were we right. He seriously loved every single minute of it...running from exhibit to exhibit and interacting with all the different activities.

We got there right at 10 am when they opened. We were literally the first people they let in and it afforded us a chance to stay one step ahead of the crowds that descended as the day went on which was really nice. 

There was a really neat indoor playground right as we went in that had drawn Perry's eye from the street...but our cautious little boy much preferred the interactive educational exhibits to climbing to heights and and sliding down which was a-ok by me. 

The first stop was a water play area that was a lot more than just fun...Perry got to play with water flow making different patterns with movable channel walls and a lock/gate system. Pretty sure he could have stayed here all day.

Next stop was the dinosaur room where there was a big sand pit with buried dinosaur bones to find. They even had cute little vests and tools for kids to use to make them really feel the part of a paleontologist. Our dinosaur loving boy was in heaven. Pretty sure he could have stayed in here all day too.

But we encouraged him along. There was a pretend doctor room, an art room, a music room, and makers room where Perry worked on his engineering skills putting little cubes together that have different actions to make a system. One color gave power, another gave a sensor, and another did an action. And so on and so on. He loved manipulating it and making it do different things...adding a cube to go slower, faster, reverse. His engineer granddaddy and my mom would be so proud. :)

There was also a big Eric Carle exhibit upstairs where he played in grass like a caterpillar, made a spider web, and decorated a butterflies wing. 

In the music area there was a cool room that you could move around in that created visuals of you moving up on a big screen. It was fun to be crazy and see what the screen would do. Pictures don't exactly do it justice...but you get the picture. It was fun.

If you find yourself in or near Chattanooga with kiddos I highly recommend you check out the Creative Discovery Museum. It is awesome!

Meanwhile Clara was a trooper and enjoyed the sights and sounds. And worked on her smile. :)

Wordless Wednesday

Wednesday, June 7, 2017

Memorial Day Weekend

Sunday, June 4, 2017

A look back at our busy but fun memorial day weekend. The weekend kicked off with a fun and impromptu dinner with friends at Buena Vista. Nothing says Memorial Day like Mexican food right?!? Our friends Brittany and Erik were there with their little girl Kinsey who is just about 6 weeks older than Clara. They had a riveting play date as you can see from the picture below. lol. Sharing in their favorite activity together...napping.

Sunday we had a family cookout complete with burgers, hot dogs, and time at the pool. The big kids splashed and played and enjoyed the Eckley kids' new pool floats. Perry had no idea he was the youngest kid out there...he can hold his own with the big kids. The littlest one was wearing her bathing suit...but didn't go in the pool. She preferred a lazy nap in the shade.

Then Monday we went over to Aunt T's porch to have a patriotic gathering with her, Aunt Kay and my Daddy (aka Papaw). We ate tons of food and visited a while. It was great to catch up with all of them. Perry and Clara were looking sharp in their red, white and blue. 

On the way home back over the mountain we were able to stop by Mommyteen and PawPaws for a few minutes to visit with them and let them meet their newest great grand. Embarrassingly it took us this long to make that happen...sorry about that Mommyteen!

It was a good weekend! Thankful not just for a day off of work for Daddy and extra reasons to have parties and eat hot dogs. Thankful for the men and women who paid the ultimate price so that we can do all those things and more...and live in a place where we are free!

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