About Me

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I am 36 years old and a mother of two beautiful little girls. Kevin and I have been married for 11 years. He is a stay-at-home dad who runs his own business from our home. I am a part-time 3rd grade teacher and have been teaching for 15 years. I live no more than 10 minutes away from my parents, in-laws, sisters, nieces, newest nephew, grandparents, aunts, and uncles... I wouldn't want it any other way!

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Look Who Lost Her Front Tooth

Katelyn lost her first top tooth this week. She has two missing teeth at the moment, but has lost four teeth in all. She was very worried about losing this top tooth. She was afraid that it would make her look silly. Now that the tooth is actually out, she loves it! She shines that gorgeous smile to everyone who wants to see!

Check out how cute she looks with her newest missing tooth...

I tell you, I think all of the spring rain is making my girls grow like weeds. Both of the girls have really shot up over the last few weeks. As a matter of fact, a pair of capris that I had bought Katelyn for our spring break trip to Folly Beach just one month ago...too small already!
And...she is really starting to look like a 1st grader (ahh, only 5 more weeks of kindergarten)!

Note the jeans...Katelyn has not been a fan of jeans. She complained and insisted on only soft pants all through preschool and most of kindergarten. However, she has recently discovered that jeans aren't so bad. I can't believe how much older she looks in jeans...I love how she looks in them!

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Katelyn - the Artist

Katelyn writes and illustrates stories all day long.It is probably what she spends the majority of her free time doing in the winter. Katelyn wants to be an illustrator when she grows up. As much as she loves to write, I am surprised that she doesn't want to be an author and illustrator, but she said she would let someone else do the writing. She really does have an artistic way of looking at the world...something she most definitely did not get from her mama.

The other night, we were snuggled up in her bed reading a bedtime story. Katelyn stopped my reading mid-way through the book and said, "Look at this mama...it used to be a plain white page, and look at what the illustrated created!" She had such passion in her voice and was completely in awe. She has always been such a deep thinker. Not only does she think in such deep and philosophical ways, but she is quite a little artist for a kindergarten student.

She has wanted to be an illustrator for some time now. She recently asked me when she will be old enough to take an art class. I would love to sign her up for a summer art class, but we'll have to see how it fits into our schedule of already committed activities for the summer.

This is a simple example of her writing and supporting illustration. I love the details of the pizza oven with the fire below it.

Deathly Afraid of Ants

Kennedy has this very unusual fear of ants. I know, the tiniest little bug there is, and that is what she fears the most. She even had a nightmare one night that ants were in her bed. She woke up crying and insisting that there were ants in her bed. I showed her that there weren't any ants, but she wasn't buying it. Needless to say, she spent the rest of the night in our bed.

On another instance, Kennedy was out riding her tricycle in front of the house. She saw an anthill in one of the cracks in the sidewalk. She immediately ditched the bike and took off for the house yelling, crying, and screaming the entire way! I thought she had cracked her head open or broken a bone the way she was carrying on. She even fell and scraped her elbow and knee in her attempt to get away as fast as she could. She was still hysterical when she got into the house because now that she was safe, she wanted one of us to rescue her bike from the ants.

Here she is happily riding her bicycle right before the whole ant incident...

There was even a short period of time when Kennedy would make me carry her from the house to the car whenever she was wearing sandals so that ants couldn't get on her toes. Oh Kennedy, you are an interesting one for sure:)

Saturday, April 18, 2009

Katelyn's 1st Gymnastics Meet

Katelyn had her very first gymnastics meet today. It was an exhibition meet in order to prepare the girls for the fall when they will be competing against other teams. You cannot tell from the pictures, but we had sparkle hairspray on her hair...as did a lot of the girls!

Katelyn performed her routine on each of the four pieces of equipment...bars, beam,, floor, and vault. She did awesome! I was so proud and excited of how well she performed. I was worried that she might get terribly nervous performing all by herself in front of such a large crowd. She did have a little trouble remembering the routines with everyone watching, but boy oh boy, she really did well under pressure with her skills! Her concentration was very apparent as she paused and took her time to execute each move, especially before doing her pull-over on bars...which she made without any help! She nailed her bar routine and had the best vault of the day!

Here she is warming up...

...listening to the coach's pre-meet pep talk...

Unfortunately, I don't have any still pictures of her during the actual meet because flash photography is prohibited...and the lighting was terrible. I have plenty of video of her performing each routine! Here is a short video clip of Katelyn on each piece of equipment. I only included one move from each of her floor and beam routines since they are rather lengthy routines.

And now for the awards...way to go baby!

Since Katelyn is progressing through gymnastics so quickly, I thought I had better chronicle how far she has come so far...before I forget. Katelyn was in an "Advanced Preschool" class when she was 4 years old (fall of 2007). It was a 1-hour class once a week. Then, in December of 2007, while still 4 years old, she was moved up to the Level 1 preteam. While on Level 1 , she practiced once a week for 90 minutes. At the beginning of the summer of 2008, she moved to Pre-2, which meant she practiced once a week for two hours. In the fall of kindergarten (2008), she moved up again to Level 2 preteam. For Level 2, she practiced twice a week, for 2 hours each day... for a total of 4 hours per week. Katelyn remained at Level 2 throughout her kindergarten year.

Katelyn will begin Level 3 team in June of this year! Level 3 is when the girls start competing against other gyms! She will be adding some new skills to her current routines and adding music to her floor routine now that she is a Level 3. She will be practicing twice a week for a total of 6-7 hours per week and will participate in 10 meets starting in the fall and winter of
1'st grade (2009).

Needless to say, I am soooo very excited about Katelyn's interest and skills in gymnastics! I think that gymnastics is such an awesome sport that really helps children develop strength, coordination, and skills that can be applied in various other sports...it just makes you a great all-around athlete!

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Easter 2009

a special day to remember all that Jesus' love for each one of us and to celebrate that
He is risen...He is risen indeed...hallelujah!

We celebrated Easter by attending Good Friday service. It is always one of my favorite services of the year. I know that sounds strange considering that it is such a dark, solemn, and sad service. I love the deep emotion the service evokes and the compassion and love I feel for what Jesus endured for me.

On Saturday, we had an Easter egg hunt at church...it is an annual tradition. On Sunday morning, the girls were very excited that the Easter Bunny had visited our house. They had an Easter egg hunt throughout the house. Then, Kevin took the girls to Emmanuel's pancake breakfast while I showered and got myself ready. We met up at church and all attended Easter morning service together... along with Kevin's parents, my parents, Mindy, Tom, Ethan, Emily, Tiffany, Bobby, Caleigh, Reagan, and "Uncle Joe...Tom's brother. After church, we had a wonderful Easter brunch with the entire Nels clan. To finish this glorious day, the entire Jack family (all the Jack's that were at church along with my brother, Kevin) met at Mindy and Tom's house for Easter dinner and one more egg hunt.

Well, we have done it again. My mom managed to find matching Easter dresses for all of the girls. Check out these cutie-pies!

Attention spans are going...going...


Hey, Emily decided to join in the fun for this picture.

Saturday, April 11, 2009

Spring Soccer

Katelyn and Kennedy are playing soccer this spring. Coincidentally, both of the girls' team colors are red. My girls really like to choose their jersey number based on their current age, so Katelyn is number 6 and Kennedy is number 3. Katelyn has always chosen her number this way...and of course, if Katelyn does it, Kennedy wants to do it too!

Comparing battle wounds...

feeling pretty good about today's game...

Kennedy and her best friend/cousin, Reagan, are on the same team. Kennedy and Reagan love being together, but they do much more dancing, hand holding, and playing Ring-Around the Rosie than any actual soccer playing... what do you expect, they are only three years old!

Taking a much needed water break. I am sure all of that playing around and laughing works up quite a thirst!

Friday, April 10, 2009

We've Got Another Deep Thinker On Our Hands

Katelyn has always been a deep thinker...to the point of being quite philosophical. Well, it looks like we indeed have another deep thinking child on our hands...little miss Kennedy. One example of Kennedy's inquisitive side would be what happened during and after this year's Good Friday service. Little miss Kennedy had so many questions throughout the entire service. Although she had just turned three a few weeks earlier, she really listened and internalized the pastor's message as well as the songs. She had really good questions that terribly hard to explain to a 3 year-old. She was also moved by Peter's dramatic performance. It was mostly a monologue, but Peter collapsed at the end as he cried about defying Jesus. Kennedy was so in awe with the entire reenactment. She kept asking if she could be Peter when she is old enough. During prayers at dinner over the next several weeks, Kennedy insisted on saying her prayers in Peter's voice...very loud, deep, and staccato. This was just the beginning of what we have have determined to be Kennedy's interest for drama and performing.

Here is our deep thinking, dressing-up, drama queen of a princess...

Saturday, April 4, 2009

Folly Beach with the Cousins

We spent a mini-spring break at Folly Beach with Uncle Mike, Aunt Tiffany, Jacob (4), Tommy (2), Aunt Tiffany's parents, Tom and Judy, and Gre and Papoo of course! Tiffany's parents graciously invited all of us to stay with them at their beach house in South Carolina.

It was so much fun spending time with everyone. We definitely do not get to see Mike, Tiffany, Jacob, and Tommy enough! Tom are Judy are awesome! They are so welcoming and make everyone feel just like family!

Hi-ho, hi-ho, it's off to the beach I go. Kennedy was just skipping and jumping around like a little jester here. She was truly giddy.

Kevin...being the attentive daddy that he is

Oh my goodness, I love that little face!

Everyone just hanging out at the beach

Here is the "baby" of the group...Tommy

Kennedy would just giggle and giggle watching this boat float away with the tide.

A little grandfatherly advice for Jacob

Tom was always scouting out just the right shells for each of the kiddos

Look at those little wet panties...I love these next few pictures!

Katelyn looks way to grown-up in these next pictures. Where is my little girl? She is a definitely a beach LOVER!

A little girl time with Uncle Mike

The Nels cousins...Jacob, Tommy, Katelyn, & Kennedy

Kennedy and Jacob could be twins!

Jacob is so stinkin' cute!

Thanks for the fun guys, we miss you all already!