This has been a month or so like no other. The most important part of it was that Wally's dear PaPa went home to be with Jesus. And, yes, I do fully believe those words. He is home, for the first time in his life and with the one who has walked with him for longer than any other person. We were blessed enough to be able to say goodbye to him before he left, and I was so struck by his calm readiness. He was done with this life and ready for the next. His assurance, his peace, his love was such an amazing thing to see. Visits to York will never be the same. He would constantly find funny remarks to make about the kids or us, and usually we were the slow ones to pick up on it! He was always so kind to me and to our children and would read to them and listen to them and put up with them playing at the dining room table while he ate his meals. I'm thankful we'll see him again one day!
Back at home, we have been experiencing all kinds of new adventures. Alden is thoroughly enjoying his insect kit that he received from Grandmama and Grandaddy. He is constantly catching things and then asking me for information from the book we purchased to go along with their gift. I am excited to see him exploring and learning without realizing it!
One hilarious thing that Alden said after his birthday:
Uncle Christopher asked Alden," What does it feel like being 4?"
Alden said, "Handsome."
"Corwee" (wee b/c he's little), is always aiming to run with the big guys. He's climbing trees now. I hate this stage, actually b/c it's where they can climb higher than I can reach, but then can't get back down.
We took a quick trip to Conway to see Great Grandpa. I wish we could go down more often! It was so good to see him. As you can see, Alden shared his Spiderman toys with him.
A sweet moment.
The fantastic five.
Again, back at home, we began homeschooling. Actually the beginning was amidst trips to York and Waynesville to visit PaPa and for the funeral. So we got off to a rather unpredicted start. Here's how she was welcomed to Kindergarten:
New pencils and some flowers at breakfast.
She made her own alphabet cards to put up on the wall. We did this over a week or so before school started, and then I put them up. They are kind of unnecessary for her, but so completely cute. It just makes the room fun. I have since printed out smaller cursive letters, b/c she does not know those.
Aw. So adorable.
Here is what Corwin did the first day of school. I have since not had to pull this down again b/c he has made a great adjustment. He does however, beg me for this bin of lentils every once in a while. I just am terrible at handling messes though you'd never be able to tell by looking at my house...
At the end of the day, Alden was still happy too. We had special chocolate covered pretzels dipped in sprinkles to end our first day. (Really, mostly b/c I was on a chocolate crave and thought it would be ridiculous to stoop so low as biting a hunk out of some bakers chocolate.)
I managed to shop at the enormous consignment sale here before we left for the beach.
Corwin insisted on dumping all of the felt pieces and wearing Rhi's new shin-guards.
Then we spent a week at Ocean Isle, while the gigantic pile of laundry awaited (cleanly) in our family room.
Running along the edge of sand and sea.
Absolutely thrilled. He soon after ran straight for the waves, threw himself down, spun over onto his back, and had to be rescued by daddy.
Grandaddy was pretty good at getting the kids riled up.
The tidal pools were awesome this year. I loved watching the kids play and help play.
Wally could really get the boogie-board going, would run, with a child on it, then let go to let them slide for feet before sinking or stopping in the pool.
This trip would have been incomplete without little Benjamin. He is an awesome cousin, happy to share, and always ready to play. Corwin misses him badly and loves to find pictures of him in his prayer book and memory book.
The kids love pretending to take the kayak out. We finally convinced Rhianwen to come with us for real, so Wally, Rhi, Alden and I took it out deep into a school of fish that jumped and plopped back down into the waves.
Not to get too far behind on educational pursuits, we took a little morning trip out to the marsh to draw what crabs we could find. We found hermit and fiddler crabs. We did not, however, use the huge net. Consider it a prop.
Wally risking life and limb for us to draw a crab. My hero.
One of my favorite things to do each year at the beach. Ruth taught me most of the shell names a couple of years ago, but she recently gave me a book so we could be more specific and learn names of many more.
Icecream, yeah! We had a great time with the whole fam, but of course, I didn't get pictures of everyone. I'm pretty bad about being intentional.
He wanted to wear his hats! Yes!
Flying Uncle Robeson's kites.
Rhianwen promised to make "Orange Fizeroo" for Grandmama while at the beach. That is what they are saying in this picture "Fizerooooo." hee hee.
Random strangers on the beach accused Wally of working to hard. Here you can see him caught in action. Do you see why I can't fatten him up?!
Don't I look cute? Ha ha!
Making shell impressions with shells and playdoh.
Golf as it was done so long ago in Scotland: beating the golf ball into submission.
Corwin imitating Rhianwen. Hola!
Again back at home, we had color week (learning about light and color). Here is the poster we did. I just like how it looks...fun:
The boys' morning tradition.
Guess who lost her first tooth? Tonight she lost her second. We're on a roll. She is SO totally adorable with those gaps. I'll put that one up next monthish....? Some funny things that she has said:
When asked what instrument (other than the piano) she'd like most to learn to play: "The harmonica."
When discussing cousin Virginia's plan to turn in a rental car at the airport: "Why can't she just tie a string to the airplane and attach it to the car, and the airplane can fly dragging the car behind it?'.
"Aloh. My name is Inigo Montoya..."