Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Follow me on Bloglovin!

Follow my blog with Bloglovin

Happiness is... New Beginnings in a New Year

imagesX5S35M37

Happiness is…. New Beginnings in a New Year

Let me just say that I am sooooo happy to say goodbye to 2013.  It has been one of the craziest, hardest, not great years EVER!  There were definitely highlights (and I will go over those in a bit) but man am I glad that it is finally over.

2013 Regrets or Lowlights (in Chronological Order)

~Leaving my childcare job at my church after 4 years.

~Leaving my pediatric dental assistant job that I LOVED!

~Leaving my friends that I loved and would not have survived living in Utah without.

~Working for an awful human being in the form of a dentist when I moved back to SC.  I’m still healing from the scars that man left after all this time.

~Realizing my marriage was over and asking for a divorce. (Number 1 suckiest thing this year!)

~ My husband realizing (months after we agreed to divorce) that I was really serious and it dawning on him how hurt I was from the things that happened in our marriage.

~My pappy dying. (Definitely ties for Number 1 suckiest thing!)

~Finding out the day after burying my pappy that Ian had already filed for divorce and I was being served the following week. (Due to court errors, I have yet to be served.)

2013 Highlights

~Moving back to South Carolina!

~Seeing and living near my family for the first time in 8 years.

~Spending quality time with my best friend in the world!  Getting to know her babies!

~Living less than 500 feet from my sister and watching our boys pick up right where they left off!

~Finding a new church home.

~Getting the job at the school.  Oh how I love this job and these kids.

~Becoming real friends with Ian after all we’ve been through.

~Receiving the TEACH grant and making plans to go back to school.

~Really standing up for myself and not settling for less.

~Watching both of my boys blossom and grow up.

Things I am Looking Forward to in 2014

~Starting over!

~Going back to school!

~My son becoming a teenager (maybe I am not really looking forward to this but I am so proud of him!)

~This blog!  I already love it.  I used to blog all the time and got away from it.  I am really happy to be back at it.

~Reading the Bible in a year.  I know I NEED God's word like I need breath.  It's one in the same!

~Expanding my baking.  Trying new recipes.  I have a HUGE passion for baking and it fills me with joy to share it.

~Spending quality time with my family.

~Seeing where God leads.  I'm making the resolution to seek God and be ready to say YES to whatever or wherever He leads.

 

So no I'm not sad to see 2013 go.  I am taking 2013 as learning life experience and I'm moving forward.  2014 Here I come!

What are your Lowlights and Highlights?

Are you making Resolutions?  Working toward a goal?  Focusing on a single word?

 

XOXO~Denise

Friday, December 27, 2013

High Five for Friday (Christmas Edition)

I seriously had a great week!  We had a light week with many of the kids being on vacation from school.  There were no major scouting events.  I did miss my Tigers though.  I finished shopping and everything was ready for Christmas morning!  Linking up with Lauren Elizabeth for H54F.

1. I did some baking this week.  I tried my hand at making homemade cinnamon rolls using The Pioneer Woman's recipe.  I will be posting a little more on that adventure this week.  It was a huge hit.

2.  This year was the first Christmas I'd been back in SC to spend with my family in 8 years!  It was so much fun getting to spend time with them.  On Christmas Eve we went to my Aunts and ate and visited.  The kids played minute to win it and it was pretty hysterical.  Even  my cousin (around my age) got in on the action.  Fun was had by all!  017

3. We started a new tradition of Christmas jammies this year.  The boys all got Duck Dynasty and I got the cutest pink owl jammie set ever!

054

055

4. Seeing the genuine excitement on my boys faces on Christmas morning made me feel all warm and gooey inside.  I mean honestly who wouldn't with these two cuties??

066

082

5. I received the Urban Decay Naked palette I'd been wanting for a while.  I absolutely love it! I've tried a couple combinations of the colors and can't wait to try more out!

077

Christmas was amazing!  It was the first one in a long time I was at peace with.

So how was your week?

XOXO, Denise

Friday, December 20, 2013

High Five for Friday

This week has been a little crazy with trying to finish Christmas shopping, my boss being on a cruise all week so I was in charge of the school and working long hours.  However there were several highlights that made it so much better!

1. My secret santa at work dropped this little guy off for me at the beginning of the week.  I named him Owen and he makes me happy! :)

[caption id="attachment_278" align="aligncenter" width="300"]Owen the Owl Owen the Owl[/caption]

2. One of my parents brought me a gift for Christmas yesterday.  It is a bottle of perfume.  I thought it was so sweet for her to think of me.  :)

002

 

3. One of my favorite Christmas traditions in Charleston is the Festival of Lights.  I haven't been in 8 years since we lived in Utah but now I'm home and of course I wanted to go!  So we loaded up yesterday and headed to the island to see the lights.  We rode the carousel too.  :) I bribed Brennan to ride it with pie.  That boy loves some pie.

029

028

4. We drove through the lights, walked Santa's village and rode the carousel.  We ended the night by roasting marshmallows and drinking hot chocolate.  It was Jaxon's first time to go and Brennan hasn't been since he was 4.  I loved spending the time with my boys.

015

5. Tonight is my office Christmas party.  I'm so excited for tonight.  It should be a blast.  Definitely going to round out my week nicely.

What traditions do you look forward to every year?

Hugs, Denise

Thursday, December 19, 2013

It's Crazy How Much Everything Changes

The tradition has been to either snap a photo or get pictures taken at Christmas to use as our Christmas card.  I love this tradition because we have ended up with some really cute pictures and cards!  So this year, with everything that's gone on with the divorce, the kids schedules, and our school/work schedules, I just wasn't thinking family pictures this year.  Besides, I pondered if taking a family picture (all 4 of us) would be a huge lie any way since we are in fact in the process of divorce.  Don't get me wrong, Ian and I are getting along fantastically and spending time with the kids together for the first time really ever.  So maybe it's not that much of a stretch.  I wonder though if people will think it's weird that we are sending out a card together.  Ian wants and is trying to convince me to work it out.  I'm just not sure.  I'm praying about it.  That's all I can say.

Anyway, at B's boy scout Christmas party we snapped a quick family photo and I thought "Hey, I'll just use that one!"  So yesterday I open up Walmart's photo center and logged in. There was my pictures from the last two years right there.  I started looking at the differences in our appearances from 2011 to 2012.  Then I uploaded this years picture and thought "WOW!  Look at how much my kids have grown!" I mean last year my son was shorter than me!  No seriously! Look at this picture!CF 2012-0114Look at the differences from 2011 and 2012.

[caption id="attachment_269" align="aligncenter" width="72"]Our 2011 Christmas picture Our 2011 Christmas picture[/caption]

[caption id="attachment_270" align="aligncenter" width="300"]Our 2012 Christmas Picture Our 2012 Christmas Picture[/caption]

 

Just the differences there are incredible to me!  I thought they looked so much more grown up in the 2012 picture than 2011.  But wait till you see 2013!

[caption id="attachment_271" align="aligncenter" width="300"]2013 Christmas Picture 2013 Christmas Picture[/caption]

Brennan is TALLER than me!  Like not just a little bit! A whole LOT!  And look where Jaxon stands compared to how tall he was in 2012!

So I thought how cool would it be to use all the pictures in ONE card and show the changes.  If it blew me away, maybe everyone else will think it's cool too.  So here is how our card turned out!  I absolutely LOVE it!

011

 

But seriously my kids can stop growing.  I mean Brennan is ONLY twelve and he is already so much taller than me.  By the time he hits high school, he is going to be taller than Ian!

What do you think?  What does your Christmas card look like?  Do you have a "tradition" as far as that goes?  I'd love to hear it!

Love, Denise

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Wordless Wednesday

Wordless Wednesday

My almost teenager! I cherish these moments!

Monday, December 16, 2013

December Birchbox

002003So a few months ago I came across a blog post by Kate at The Small Things Blog about her Birchbox subscription.  I had never heard of them before and when I saw it, I thought "You mean it's like getting a surprise present every month? Sign me up!"  So I put in my request for a subscription.  I've really enjoyed getting these every month and love trying the new products that I get in them.

This month my box has:

~ Harvey Prince Hello Perfume

~Sheer Glo Pearly Lotion from Manna Cosmetics

~Number 4 Non-aerosol  Hairspray

~Organic Healing Balm from The Honest Company

~ Printed Hair Tie from Twistband

The perfume has a light fruity/citrusy scent.  I really like that.  I prefer aerosol hairspray but I can leave this little bottle at work so that if I ever need a quick spritz, it will be right there.  The healing balm and hair tie are already in my purse. :) I am not sure about the sheer glo lotion but maybe I'll give it a try when I need a little color.

Friday, December 13, 2013

High Five for Friday

So this week went by in a BLUR!  I can't believe everything that happened this week!  So excited to look back and see that it was a great week!  Linking up with Lauren Elizabeth and Jenny for High Five for Friday!

[caption id="attachment_252" align="aligncenter" width="224"]So excited for his gifts! So excited for his gifts![/caption]

1.  On Saturday we attended Jaxon's first cub scout Christmas party!  He is so excited to be part of scouts after waiting so patiently while we attended all the fun things for Brennan while he was a cub scout!

[caption id="attachment_253" align="aligncenter" width="300"]Christmas Parade Christmas Parade[/caption]

2. We were part of the town Christmas Parade with the pack on Sunday!  It was cold and rainy but our float was so cute with all those cutie scouts!  I adore these kids like none other!  I am so proud to be a scout mom and Tiger den leader!

[caption id="attachment_254" align="aligncenter" width="300"]So proud of his gingerbread house! So proud of his gingerbread house![/caption]

3. On Wednesday, the kiddies had a half day so J's teacher had parents come in and make gingerbread houses with them!  I thoroughly enjoyed hanging out and giggling and building, getting messy with my boy!  I just love him soooo much!!!

[caption id="attachment_255" align="aligncenter" width="225"]Me and Santa Me and Santa[/caption]

4. Yesterday Santa came to the preschool where I worked and took pictures with the kiddos.  Ian made a great Santa didn't he?!  So thankful for him volunteering for my littles at school!

[caption id="attachment_256" align="aligncenter" width="225"]Merry Christmas Ian! Merry Christmas Ian![/caption]

5.  And last but certainly not least, Ian got his Christmas present early!  His all time favorite comedian, Gabriel Iglesias, came to the Performing Arts Center here in SC last night!  I bought Ian tickets and we made a night of it!  It was a great show and I laughed harder than I have in a long time!  Merry Christmas Ian!

So tell me what was your week like???

XOXO, Denise

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Wordless Wednesday~ Making Gingerbread Houses

034The first grade made gingerbread houses this morning and I was able to go help J with his! I love this kiddo!

Friday, December 6, 2013

High Five for Friday

This is my first High Five for Friday post!  I read through hundreds of these every Friday so I thought I'd participate this week!


Linking up with Lauren Elizabeth!



1.  We put up our Christmas Tree this past Sunday.  I love how pretty it turned out!


022


2. At Scouts on Tuesday night, we made the most adorable snowmen ornaments with nuts and washers.  This is J with his snowman!


scholarship


3.   I received notification on Wednesday that I had been awarded the TEACH scholarship to go back to college!


028


4. Yesterday I received these beauties at work with a sweet note from Ian~ Just Because!


030


5.  I spent several hours at work helping put up and decorate this massive 12 foot Christmas Tree in the foyer of our school.  I think it turned out beautifully.  I love my job!


So tell me what were the highlights from your week??

Happiness is.... Going Back to College! Again!

That's right folks.  A few months ago I applied for a scholarship that SC has for Early Childhood Education.  I received a letter Wednesday night saying that I had been awarded the scholarship that pays 80% of tuition for an Associates Degree.  Part of the perks is that, in order for me to qualify for the scholarship, my employer has to agree to pay 10% tuition costs also.  Well, thankfully, I have an amazing employer and she is doing just that.  So that leaves just 10% of the tuition for me to pay.  Totally doable! So I went in to the college yesterday and submitted my re-admittance application (I attended there back in 1999-2000.)  Today, I did my orientation and met with the financial aid people.  I have to say that it's crazy how fast this is all going.  I have to go back in next week and meet with my advisor and register for classes.  I am hoping and praying that most of my classes can be taken online so that I am not away from the kids too much more than I have to be.  I already miss them a ton while I am at work all day.  It's only 2 years and it's such an amazing opportunity.  Another piece of my fresh start falling right into place!  I'm finally starting to feel a little more like myself instead of Denise Downer all the time.  One day at a time!  Happiness is being a college student again! 

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Can I be real honest for a minute?

I am truly the type of person that tries to look for the good in all situations.  I try to see the bright side.  I find happiness in the small things like a good cup of coffee, a text from someone saying they were thinking of me, a hug, my boys laughter.  I've never asked for much out of life.  I simply want to show the love of Christ to everyone I meet and be the best person I can be.  But let's face it, I fall short every single day.  Some days I fall short moment by moment.  There are some days that the pain in my heart feels like it's going to rip right out of my chest.  Lately, I've been feeling that a lot lately.  With the impending divorce, losing my grandfather and so much other stuff going on, my heart aches.  I never know how much to share.  I know that I will continue to find the little things that bring joy to my life even in the midst of the storm and pain.  I am praying for direction and clarity.  I want God to rain down HIS will for me and make the path so clear that I know exactly what I am supposed to be doing.  I know He will bring peace if I seek Him in obedience.  Will you please be in prayer with me for wisdom and discernment like never before?  I know He goes before and behind me.  I know He works ALL things (the good and the bad, the happy and the pain) for the good of all who love Him. 

Father, please hear my prayer.  Please make my path straight and as bright as can be so that I know exactly where I am supposed to go and do.  You are the everything I need.  You are the prince of peace and my comfort at all times.  Thank you for the work you are doing in me and around me.  Thank you for preparing me for your Will.  Thank you for providing counsel when I need it the most.  Thank you for those who are showing me YOUR love.  Thank you for just EVERYTHING.  I need you every single moment for every single breath.  Keep my eyes on you and a spirit of grace in my heart.  Thank you for letting me know over and over again I can trust You.  Father, I just thank you.  I love you.  Amen

Thanks for letting me share my heart today.  There is pain but there is always something to be thankful for and happy about. 

That's what Happiness is!

 

Friday, November 29, 2013

Happiness is... Sometimes Not Being Happy

After such a rough week last week and a horrible start to this week, I really need the reminder of things I'm thankful for and things that bring me happiness.  Last week, Wednesday, November 20th my pappy Paul passed away at 4:30 in the afternoon.  He had lung cancer and had been in remission for years.  A few months ago, it came back.  Week before last, unbeknownst to me, the doctors had told him there was nothing else they could do for him.  Anymore treatment would kill him.  So they sent him home with my granny to make arrangements and live out the rest of his days.  Hospice came in Wednesday morning for the first time.  By that afternoon he was gone.  After work on Wednesday, We took B to his friends playoff football game.  We were cold, and enjoying some hot chocolate and watching my friends son's team kick some butt, when my phone rang.  It was my dad.  He never calls so immediately I thought something was wrong.  I left the bleachers and called him back.  That was when I heard the words that changed and rocked my world.  How can the world still turn and go on while one of the greatest men I ever knew in my life was not in it any longer? Anyway, Thursday I went to work and did my job just to keep busy.  Friday, I stayed home and rested.  That night was the visitation at the funeral home.  Two hours of standing at his casket and not being able to say goodbye.  Watching his friends and comrades from the VFW come to attention and salute him.  Holding my granny's hand as people gave their condolences.  Hugging family members that I hadn't seen in years due to being in Utah for so long.  Reuniting with my cousins and meeting their wives and children. 

Saturday was the funeral.  We arrived just in time for my family processional to arrive and walk in to the church together.  We left the boys with friends and family while we went.  I knew it was going to be hard on me and I didn't want to put them through it.  My cousin, Jason, did the eulogy in his formal Navy Dress.  He spoke of honor and valor since my pappy served in two wars, Korea and Vietnam.  Before he finished, he called muster, which is a roll call that the military does after a battle to find out who survived and who had fallen.  He did this while standing at attention and facing the American flag.  It seriously made me come undone.  Then we got in the procession to the grave side where they did the full military rite.  Air Force Honor Guard carried my pappy from the hearse to the grave site.  The preacher said a few words and the Honor Guard folded the flag, played Taps and fired the shots and presented the flag to my granny.  Then my granny, daddy and his brother and sisters placed red roses on his coffin.  I just stood there in the chilly air and cried.  Thankfully Ian was by my side and held me up so I didn't fall in the dirt.  I hugged my granny harder than I ever had in my life. 

We went back to the church for a meal after the funeral.  Wonderful Southern women cooked and prepared a feast.  We ate and then several of us went back to granny's house.  I was the last to leave minus my aunt and her husband, my cousin, his wife and daughter who were staying with her. We had a good visit filled with stories of the old days, silly things pappy did, laughs and some tears. I was able to bring a peace lily home from granny's house.  I am determined to keep it alive.  Thank goodness it's a forgiving plant. 

So to sum up... sometimes your just not happy.  Sometimes you have to be sad and grieve.  That is what I am doing - grieving.  Because I can't imagine life without this amazing man who I had the privilege of being his granddaughter. 

RIP Pappy Paul West I pray you are healthy and happy in the arms of the Father now. 

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Happiness is Having an Amazing Best Friend

Happiness is Having an Amazing Best Friend

This girl is my soul mate. She has been my best friend since the day I met her standing outside our lecture hall for our SC Tort Law class. 14 years, several boyfriends, 2 marriages (hers and mine), 9 kids (between the 2 of us), 2500 miles between us and back. Yep, that's what this friendship is made of and endured. She is standing right by my side as I go through the divorce. I'm so thankful for her love and support and friendship. We are sisters and our bond is deep. I love you girlie. You help me see the good in my life and see through the pain. I thank God for you every single day! Happiness is having you for my friend.

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Happiness is Finally Knowing What You Want

I have been married for 13 years this month.  It has been a learning adventure for sure.  Ian was everything I wanted for so long but so many outside factors came in to play in our marriage.  Married in 2000 and our first son was born in 2001.  For all intents and purposes, I "lost" my husband in 2001.  Not even a year married and the military takes him away and the man who came back was really never my husband again.  He came back disconnected, uninterested, and aloof.  As the years went by, he hardened, almost to the point of pure hate.  Please know, I am no angel.  I am hot headed, and stubborn, and if I think I'm right about something, well...  I have many flaws.  I am perfectly imperfect if you will. 

In 2005, we packed up and moved our little family across the country to Utah.  It was quite the shock.  It took everything I had to adjust and I really didn't do it very well.  You see up until then, we had lived in my hometown, amidst everything I had ever known and loved.  So this southern girl, transplanted into the west was a HARD transition.  In 2006, our second son was born.  That was when I saw a crack of the man I married.  A slight glimpse into who he used to be.  Our son was born 6 weeks premature and we came so very close to losing him several times.  During that time, I saw the hope of the man who I married.  But just as quickly, he was gone. 

In 2008, I started to have symptoms that no one, not one single doctor could explain.  I also went to school at that time.  Thinking that my marriage just wasn't going to make it and I needed a way to support myself and my children.  I also reconnected with God in a way that I had never before experienced.  I finished school including my externship with a 4.0 GPA.  I started working for a pediatric dentistry and over the months the symptoms I was experiencing got worse and new ones emerged.  I stopped working after 6 short months and the downhill came for my health.  Spinal tap after spinal tap, several diagnoses, and multiple specialist all came down to one thing.  I was broken and no one knew how to fix me other than trying to keep draining cerebral spinal fluid off my brain and spine. 

This was rough on my marriage.  I needed someone to take care of me since I could barely walk by myself but since no one could tell us EXACTLY what was going on, my husband was convinced that it was all in my head.  Funny thing though, they don't randomly stick needles in your spine and drain several cc's of fluid off each time if it's all in your head.  Eventually, I started to feel better but it still took until 2011 for the doctors to finally give me a definitive diagnosis.  Meniers disease. 

During that time my husband began to experience health issues of his own that threatened his military career.  After a med board and such a long drawn out process, the Air Force opted to deny reenlistment after a 15 year military career.  Heartbreaking it sure was.  So on September 11, 2012, Ian separated from the Air Force and struggled with how to move on from here. 

It has been one of the HARDEST times in our life.  In December 2012, I felt like I just needed to finally be out of Utah.  After much debate and decisions, Ian and I decided that it was time to go home.  He fought it tooth and nail.  In March, we packed up our family and everything we owned and headed back to South Carolina.  It was another hard transition.  Immediately, I felt relief.  I knew I was home.  Surrounded by those who loved us.  Things didn't get easier for me and Ian though.  I felt like the more I tried to piece our marriage back together after so much heartache and disappointment, the harder he resisted.  Finally over the summer, I decided that I just couldn't do it anymore.  I made the decision but just didn't know how to tell him.  There was so much hurt and anger, but there was real fear.  Fear for the unknown and what would happen.  Fear if I didn't tell him I would lose myself since all I did was walk on eggshells.

One night while watching tv with him, he said something and looked over at me and I just said "I don't want to do this anymore." We talked for a long time.  I thought we both agreed that neither of us wanted to continue hurting one another and by the end of the conversation I felt relief.  Little did I know that he took that conversation and filed it away under the never happened or he just didn't believe me. 

This is the way most of our marriage went.  I would say something and it would get disregarded.  Regardless if I was pouring my heart out and breaking.  About 3 1/2 weeks ago, he started to come around.  He started to realize that I was serious.  Our financial situation doesn't allow us to go our separate ways just yet, and with our kids being the absolute focus for both of us, we are just working around it.  He is starting to realize what he did for all these years and sadly, and wonderfully, I'm starting to see the man that I fell in love with and married for the first time in forever.  However, I'm just too far past the point to want to work it out.  He understands this.  We have decided that we are going to become friends.  We are working toward making the best decisions for our kids given what we have.   I am thankful.  He is not only changing to be a better dad but he is my friend. 

That is where I am now.  I am finally in a place where I know what I want.  I know that I can't settle for less.  I'm finding who I am for the first time in so long.  I know I am going to be okay.  That is what Happiness is...

 

Happiness is Seeing the Joy on His Face

Happiness is Seeing the Joy on His Face

Last night was our second pack meeting with our new cub scout pack. This time the Tigers actually got to participate.  They had the opening ceremony of the pack meeting.  They did such a GREAT job.

I am the Tigers den leader. I have 4 boys in the den, including my son, Jaxon. They are all so excited about the journey through scouting. I am such a proud mom/den leader. Three of my boys got their bobcat rank last night. Only one didn't and that's because that was his second time with us.  But next pack meeting, he will be receiving his as well.  They all looked so sharp in their uniforms and behaved impeccably.

I am learning so much through this journey. Who knew Cub Scouts and Boy Scouts could teach a woman and mother so much?! Teaching my kids the value of scouting was never something I thought that would be my thing to teach my kids. But as a mom of boys, you learn that NOTHING is off limits or isn't your thing to teach. I have such pride when I see my boys striving to "do their best" or do a good turn daily. When I see them get something that they didn't get before, it's like magic. I am so thankful for this incredible opportunity to teach my sons values through scouting, like duty to God and country, being proud to be an American (which lately has been hard for any American to feel with the downturn in the government and the economy) but that is where faith comes in. Trusting God is also something that I have always tried to teach my children, but scouting allows me to do that as well.

I am one lucky mom. I have 2 amazing boys, who are growing up to be strong and confident. I am blessed to be part of so many other children's lives through this scouting adventure and I know that even when I don't know what I am doing, they are learning to think things through and figure it out. What an incredible opportunity this is. Getting to see the joy in their learning, growing and love of life is truly Happiness!

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

First Days of School

So I'm the mom that runs out of the house on the first day of school (after obsessing over their clothes, hair, and whether their socks matched their outfits) only to jump in the car and totally forget those "first day of school" pictures!  Yep that's me!  No "mom's got it together" award coming my way! I am also the person who gets on facebook to see all of my friends pictures and louds myself out that I haven't taken the aforementioned photos.  Clearly I never learn about telling tales on myself.  It's a problem I've had since I was a young girl, but I digress!  I received suggestions like take it afterschool or take them tomorrow.   Well, I got off work and hurried home thinking to myself, "I'm going to take those pictures as soon as I walk in the door!"  But LIFE happened!  You know what I'm talking about right?  I come home and find my pajama loving first grader in. his. pajamas. at 3 in the afternoon.  Well so much for that one!  I'll get the preteen 7th grader when he comes home off the bus!  I'll get one of those pictures TODAY!  Yep, then an hour passes and this mama is trying not to panic thinking, "Why did I let my first born child ride a bus for the first time in his life today? Where is my child?  Who am I going to have a "come to Jesus" meeting with, because my son is NOT home still an hour after school has let out!"  Then he walks in and the boy that was so blasé when I dropped him off at school this morning is animated and can't stop his excitement and talks nonstop.  (I'm writing a thank you card to one of his new teachers because she apparently made 7th grade so much more exciting and bearable and cool.  I may even bring her dinner, or a bottle of wine, or maybe just I'll just shoot her an email because I can't even remember to take first day of school pictures of my kid let alone a thank you card, dinner, and or wine! So the night went on and no pictures were taken.

The next morning, making sure teeth were brushed, hair combed, and homework was in their folders, we were out the door again.  Still no pictures were taken.  By the time we all got home yesterday evening, I had a migraine that made my eye feel like it was going to pop right out of my head.  So no pictures were taken.

This morning I was determined to get those pictures!  So we got ready and headed out the door and this is what I got!

photo (2)

My Mister" I love First Grade!"  (He dressed himself! :)

photo

My "MOOOM (exasperated sigh inserted here) you really have to take pictures???"

photo (1)

And the classic of them together!  Can you tell who is excited and who is not? :)

So these are my "first day of school on the third day of school" pictures! This is what Happiness is!!!