Exotic Bathrooms, Birthday Cowboys, and Road Trips-A Look At How We Spent the Month of June

Today is the LAST day of June!  Eek! That has me a tad freaked out.  Time has been slipping by and it took the plethora of fireworks stands set up around my neighborhood to make me realize that June was on it’s way out, and July was ready to barge in.  That means I only have six weeks of summer vacation left, and that doesn’t even take into consideration the days I’ll need to put into my classroom before our one and only staff day before the kids start.  Blah!  It kind of makes me want to vomit.  Summer is going by WAY too quickly for my liking.

I know I have about six months worth of memories and pictures to share, but because that overwhelms me, I’m going to start with just this month.  Perhaps, I’ll make a habit of that…I hope!  (How do people who blog all the time do it?  I thought for sure once I was home for the summer, it would be easier, but nope!  I’ve posted a whopping three times in June: a random free write here, a post about summer here, and a very over due birthday post on my daughter here.  And, I can tell you, it’s not because I’ve been spending my time watching SYTYCD, because I’m about three episodes behind in that as well!)

So, what has been taking up my time this June?

This girl:

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We’ve had some big events this month, but if I’m being honest, much of our time between those events has been spent at home.  We are currently in the war zone that is potty training.   When Grace was only one I read this article that said typically girls are easier to potty train than boys.  Ha!  Not THIS girl!  This girl is stubborn and headstrong and completely O.K. staying in diapers until she’s a teenager.  (Well, hopefully not.)  Needless to say, it hasn’t been easy. There has been a lot of tears on both ends and a lot of accidents, and we are nowhere near being potty trained.  No amount of praise or bribing is winning Grace over; however, we will keep at it and hopefully get there eventually…before all of my hair turns gray:) Oddly enough, Grace does enjoy going potty in exotic places.  The zoo?  No problem!  Hotel room?  Simple!  The dirty gas station?  Easy peasy.  Our bathroom on the other hand? No way!  I’m really hoping that I can update this in a month and say that we are a tad bit closer.

We spent a big chunk of time this June visiting family in Nebraska and Colorado, where Ken is from.  We managed to muscle through a 15 hour drive with Grace to get to Nebraska.  She was actually very good!  It would have maybe taken us less time if it weren’t for the many times we stopped between Grace and our dog Ginger.  For the most part though, Grace just played with the few toys she brought and when she got fussy around the 12th hour, we broke out the portable DVD player and watched Brave, followed by some Mickey Mouse.

Ken’s dad lives in Nebraska, along with his two brothers and his sister, so we spent a lot of time hanging out at his dad’s house, which gave Grace plenty of time to play outside and track down frogs with her cousin Bella.  Bella and Grace are only a few months a part, and this was their first time meeting.  It was a blast to watch them play.  Grace was crushed when she had to say goodbye.

We also spent some time with Ken’s grandparents.  We haven’t made it out to Nebraska in a long time, so it’s been a while since the kids have seen their great-grandparents.

After spending time in Nebraska we headed to Colorado for a couple of days to spend time with Ken’s mom, step-dad, and sister.  We had a blast going to the zoo and Casa Bonita with them, and just enjoyed having the time to chat and see them.

June also meant swimming lessons for Grace.  She’s in a two-week session, so we go every day, and she loves it!  She’s had so much fun.  I signed her up to go at the same time as her daycare, so she also gets to see all of her little friends. She always runs over to them to tell them that she misses them “so much”!  Her instructor is great.  I honestly could not do it: squirmy little 3-5 years olds, a pool, and trying to get all six of them to listen.  Not the best combination, yet he does great, and they pay attention (for the most part).  I had to laugh because at one point he asked them all to show him their best move.  Each child did a swim move of some sort, dunking their head in the water, etc. Grace?  Grace did a dance move. She shimmied in place, wiggling her hips back and forth.  That’s my girl!:)

 

This last Friday they had Princess/Pirate Safety Day where they learned boat safety and what to do if someone falls, etc.  They each wore a life jacket and got to ride on a raft across the pool.  Then they “walked the plank” (diving board) and jumped into the deep end.  They each floated their way to the middle of the pool, while they waited for everyone else to jump.  Grace was a rock star!  I was so impressed.  There were a lot of tears in her age group, but she was completely fine.  She was one of the first to walk the plank, which meant she had to float in the water for about 15 minutes, and even then she wasn’t afraid, she just floated her way around the pool, holding hands with another little floater.  It was fun to watch!

June also marked Fenix’s 12th birthday!  One more year, and we’ll have a teenager on our hands!  Fenix was with his mom this year on his birthday, and so we picked him up the following day and treated him to dinner at Joe’s Crab Shack.  I’m not much of a fish person, but Fenix is, and I think Ken would like to be.  My nephew joined us and we ate on the patio and then let the staff embarrass the birthday boy.  (They had him wear a cowboy hat and ride on a stick pony.  Grace keeps saying “Happy Birthday Cowboy!” as a result.)

Afterwards we went for a walk along the green belt and then out for snow cones.  It was a good day.  This weekend Fenix had some friends over to swim and sleep over in honor of his birthday.  They slept out on the trampoline (remember how I said it was right outside our window a few posts back?) Well, that was a great idea, until it’s  one in the morning and all you can hear as you’re trying to sleep is middle school boy gossip.  And, yes, they gossip!:)  It was worth it though.  We ended up having family over the next day to wrap up the birthday celebrations.

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Oh, and I can’t forget!  My nephew turned 17 at the beginning of this month.  We did the usual and had him over for dinner, but in addition to that, my husband and his friend took him on an overnight hiking trip.  They had a blast hiking and doing man stuff:)  Grace and I stayed home and watched princess movies and had a very unsuccessful garage sale:)  Their pictures beat ours-hands down.

That pretty much sums up the month of June. Grace is napping right now, and when she’s done, I’m hoping to spend a little time outside playing in the water and maybe walking the green belt and feeding the geese once Ken gets off.  We’re hoping that July will bring with it a few camping trips and some more time at the pool.  (Oh yeah, and more time for me to read!).  July, we are ready for you! (Just don’t go by too quickly.  I don’t want to be back in school quite yet!)

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