This summer has been so amazing. It's the first time I have been sad about school being back in session and fall around the corner. I love fall and all the adventures it brings, but this year Summer was the highlight. It was a Summer of firsts for all of us.
Renaissance Festival – We got dressed up to visit the Renaissance Festival with my Mom and Sister. This is a family tradition that we've done since I was a kid, but this is the first time everyone in our family dressed up! I even won second place in the costume contest!
Kayaking – This year I bought a kayak and my husband and I took the kids out on the water with us. We got to paddle around on Lake Blue Ridge and explore more because of it. I got to spend some time with my mom and sister more when we visited as well.
White Water Rafting – I got to see one of my best friends and take my husband and some friends white water rafting down the Ocoee River. We ran the same course that the Olympians took in the 1996 summer Olympics. It was fantastic, and I forsee us making it a yearly trip. While I have white water rafted a few times before, everyone with me was a first timer. We had a blast.
Baseball camp – JaMonkey got to try a new sport that she has been very interested in, baseball. She got to attend Braves Baseball Camp and meet pitcher Matt Wisler as well as special VIP tour of Turner Field.
Braves game – Squishy (previously referred to as Peanut, but requested we call her Squish or Squish) attended her very first Atlanta Braves game and had an absolute blast. She has been to one other game so far, and I think she may be a bigger fan than JaMonkey at this point.
Camping – We went camping as a family for the first time. Daddy and JaMonkey go to Girl Scout camp, and I've camped with my husband before, but this was the first time all together with Squish. We stayed right on Lake Blue Ridge at Morganton Point. They had newly refurbished bathrooms that were fantastic to have. While my husband wanted to “rough it” more, it was nice having a bathroom and shower for the girls. Some of the campsites were amazing. One even has this natural arbor along the path!
Jumping into the pool – Squish got brave this summer and jumped into the pool by herself (into our arms). She also got more confident with swimming around the pool with only her floaty and not needing someone to hang onto.
Preschool – Squish started preschool this year, and now the house is so quiet because both of the girls are at school all day. She loves it and doesn't look back when I drop her off. When she comes home from school, I get overloaded with information about her day. It typically goes….”We got to play outside; we ate a snack; I had XX for lunch, and I wrote my name.” Then she sings me the song they sang that day and anything else that stands out. A friends birthday or a special center she got to play in that day. I love this age. Little sponges and full of excitement all the time.
Ballet/ Tap – While we tried to do dance for Squish when she was 18 months old, it didn't really work out so we waited and she decided that this was the year she wanted to take the class and perform with the rest of the little girls. So she is taking ballet and tap (in the same class) and of course she loves it. She does quite well, and they are adorable to watch.
Gymnastics – This year I gave JaMonkey choice of playing softball or taking dance or trying gymnastics. She gave it some thought because she really enjoyed the Braves Baseball Camp, and decided that she would try gymnastics because that was the one thing she hadn't done yet. She can do a cartwheel now. She shows me all the time.
Full-Time College Student – Now that the girls are both in school I have to ability to take on my classes at school and try to graduate sooner. Up until this point, I've been taking two classes a semester including during summer break. This summer I decided to take the summer off and enjoy the kids as much as possible before they both went back to school. I think this helped with a summer of firsts! I'm a sophomore still but after this school year, I should be a junior. I'm excited to be starting my major courses now so it is far more interesting.