Friday, June 27, 2014

Swim Class and VBS - All Signs point to summer!

This summer we put both big kids in swim class for a good refresher course.  Although Jackson whined and moaned at the mere thought of going back to swim class, he had a really great time.  Imagine that--mom and dad just might know what they're talking about!
He was in the most advanced class and they got to do all kinds of stuff.  He learned that he could easily tread water for over four minutes...

he worked on his freestyle, underwater "turtle arms," and even learned the backstroke.
And after two days, the kid who NEVER went in the water without goggles was literally diving in.  He got so good at it that his coach even taught him how to run and then dive off of the diving board.  Way to go, J!

After all that hard work, the kids got rewarded and were allowed to do fun stuff off the board.  Jackson would holler, "Cannon ball!!" and then make a big splash.  Such a cool class!

This week it was Lila's turn and she had the cutest little class.  There were only four kids and her Coach always had a helper--this day it was her son Brody (in orange).  The kids got lots of attention and Lila did amazing on day one.

It had been almost a whole year since she was a little fish in the pool.  All it took was a refresher course to get this little girl's confidence back.
And then Vacation Bible School was this week, too!  These kids were loving it every day.  Lila has waited a long time, too, and was so happy that she was finally old enough this summer.  They learned a lot and played plenty each day.

Today we got to go watch them sing all their cute little songs.  Lila had lots of friends in her class, including Sawyer, Cowen, Brooklynn, Lexie and Kate.

She did so good, too! She sang all the words that she could remember and did the motions. 
Love my little performer.  She makes my heart smile.  I even had two of her teachers come find me today just to tell me how sweet she had been all week.   Makes a mama proud!

All the kiddos

Lila watched her teacher most of the time, but kept an eye on me, too!

One of my favorite parts of VBS was that they took a daily offering from the kids.  They encouraged the kids to give generously because the money was going to buy goats for families in Malawi.  These goats are going to help out the families by providing them with milk, which they can use for themselves or sell for profit.  The kids really got into it, too.  Lila got the only bill she had in her piggy bank - $20 - and told me that she wanted to use it to buy a goat.  It was such a sweet and totally unselfish idea!  Then we all decided that we should donate money, and between her, Jackson, me and daddy, we came up with the $50 needed for one goat.  By the end of the performance today, the church and kids had raised enough money to buy 33 goats for families in need.  I'm happy and proud to be a part of something so wonderful.

Jackson's buddy, Cole, came home with us today.  These two had so much fun being in class together all week.

I'm so glad these three learned a lot in the Workshop of Wonders. 

No time to chit chat, though, we had to grab lunch and zip over to swim class!  Lila had lots to show us, too.  She dove in on one side...

and didn't come up for air until she got to the other side!

Then she got a little more advanced and got ready to dive!

Her coach made sure she was in the right position and then let her go for it.

For her finale, she dove off of the board!  Go Lila!!  This little lady had a FANTASTIC week.  She was the "Navy Seal" of the class and held her breath the longest--16 seconds!  She learned to tread water, too, and after she was done, she could flip onto her back and float.  She dove down to the bottom to retrieve toys and rings...swam on her back...and did great turtle swimming, too.  I am so proud of her and her big brother.  With all these super swimmers, I think we just might have convinced their daddy to put in a pool:)

Sunday, June 22, 2014

The three mouseketeers!

We leave for Disney World in 15 days!
These three are pretty excited--heaven help me and their daddy!

We've been to the Disney Store and Cami is ready with her Minnie Mouse outfit and headband.  The mouse ears are too cute for words.

Lila picked out this Minnie Mouse swimsuit and she is all about some fun in the sun in Orlando.  Jackson got some Mickey Mouse shirts, so he's ready, too.  I'm just praying for a miraculously cool July in Florida!  And for a smooth plane ride. And for Cameron to sleep well in the pack-n-play.  And for the big kids to get along.  Can ya tell I'm a little anxious about this trip to the "happiest place on earth?"  I am hopeful that it'll be this magical vacation--for all of us!

Saturday, June 21, 2014

Love you, Pa Hays!

We lost a special member of the family this past Sunday.  Pa Hays, Jared's grandpa, was diagnosed last week with pancreatic cancer.  The doctor thought he had between 3 and 6 months left to live.  He was in pain, but was still all with it and even kept up with TCU playing in the college world series in Omaha.  Sadly, he passed away just a few days later, on Father's Day. The funeral was on Thursday and we all felt it was the perfect way to remember Joseph Warren Hays.  He was a hardworking man, full of life and had a love for his family and all things TCU.
I first met Pa the summer before Jared and I got engaged.  I knew things were serious between us when Jared made a point for us to drive over to Fort Worth  so that I could meet Ma and Pa Hays.  I immediately loved them both.  They made me feel so welcome from that very first day.  A year later, Pa asked me to dance at our wedding...

and then he and Ma boogied down on the dance floor.  I love remembering them this way.
We didn't see him too often, usually during the holidays and on other special occasions, but treasured the time we did have with him.

He came to meet his first great-grandson when Jackson was only one day old.  Jackson carried on the JWH tradition, just like his daddy.  Then, when J was two years old, Pa met us at the Fort Worth Zoo.  He was in such good shape as an 85 year old and trekked around the zoo all morning with us.  This was a special day because he told us that he planned to propose to Roxie and showed us the ring he had bought.  We were thrilled for him and so glad that he had found happiness since Ma had passed away the year before.

A few months later, Lila was born and Pa came to meet her at the Sip & See hosted by Shelley and Warren at their home.  I'm pretty sure she stole his heart that day.

Fast forward a few more years and his family had grown even more, adding Lyndsie and Maria!

And then his third great grandchild was born!  We took the kids to Pa's house about six weeks ago and got to introduce him to sweet Cami.  He loved holding her and seeing her smile at him.

Lila got to show him that she is learning to read and he was so proud of her.

Then before we went to lunch with Pa and Roxie, Jackson got out his ball and glove and showed Pa his baseball skills.  Pa used to coach little league and baseball was always his favorite sport.  He adored watching his namesake play some ball.  I am so thankful we had this good day with him.

We love you, Pa!  And we'll see you again one day.  Like Lila said, "he's already in heaven, just waiting for us."

Friday, June 20, 2014

A Man of Many Sports

School may be over, but this cat is not sitting around watching TV all day long. 
Golf Camp started last Monday morning and this kid was ready to try out his new clubs!
He was so glad that three of his friends, Aiden, Cole and Ian were able to do the camp with him.  Shout out to the random kid photobombing them!  They had four days of instruction and were ready to show off all they had learned on the last day.

The dads were invited to caddy for their kids, so Jared put on his best caddy attire and took J to camp. 
A little while later, Memaw and I brought the two sisters to watch their brother.
My little golfer was so focused.

He did pretty good with his driver and then chipped it onto the green.

The fearsome foursome were so cute!
The day ended with some awards and these two nuts got the Co-MVPs!!
Every serious golfer puts their MVP pin on his hat.
He even asked for more practice time after camp was over!  Love this kid's work ethic:)

The next day we switched back to baseball for the All-Star game.  It was a little steamy, but Maddie, Lila, Gigi, Boom, Cami and I were all there for #32!

Batting third, from the Cubs, #32 Jackson Hays!!!

He took a big swing and the ball sailed into left field for a triple!


His buddy Tyler hit him in right after that and the boys were off to a good start.

Did I mention it was a little warm?  At least the boys had shade.

The fans did not.  The humidity even fogged up my camera-ughh!

J's team got beat, but they still got their medals:)

And Jackson loved getting to represent his team with Caden and Tyler.  These kids made the Cubs proud.

Another fantastic season in the books!

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