Catching Up

Aggghh!  It’s been FOREVER since I’ve blogged and I could give a ton of excuses like the end of the school year was really crazy or I’ve been really busy with my family, blah blah blah.  In reality, I’ve been terribly undisciplined in most areas of my life and blogging has been one of them.  I’ve just let it fall to the wayside.  However, now that summer is here, (FINALLY!) I can settle down and make blogging part of my routine again.  Which hopefully will be helpful since the summer is always a den of laziness and undiscipliness (is that a word?).

To begin, Bennett is WALKING!  WHAT?!?!  He took a few steps last Wednesday for the first time.  He is just shy of 14 months, and everyone kept asking me when he was going to start walking.  This can be really trying as a parent.  I knew Bennett would walk when he was ready, but it’s hard sometimes when other parents tell you their kids started walking at 8 months or right at their first birthday.  It is so wrong to compare, and I know this, but it’s just inevitable when you’re a first time parent and have no idea when kids are supposed to reach these milestones.  I just had to keep telling myself that he’ll do it when he’s ready.  He’s just like his daddy–he has to figure it out in his head before he tries it.  And apparently the day he figured it out in his head was a Wednesday.  There you have it!  (I would post a video, but that costs money.  Hint hint, wordpress, people want to see Bennett walking.)

Let’s see…what else has happened?  Oh!  My 8th graders were promoted and we had a fun week planned for them including a field trip to the park and a promotion ceremony.  I’m really going to miss this year’s 8th graders.  They were so fantastic–a group I know will go on and do some really cool things with their lives.  It makes me proud to be able to say that I was their 8th grade teacher way back when at Dunbar.  I hope they look back on their years in middle school fondly.  Goodness knows I sure don’t!  Middle school was rough…  Sometimes I can’t believe I willingly reenter that world on a daily basis.  How narcissistic of me…

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This past weekend, we spent some time with my dad’s side of the family at our Thompson Family Reunion at Lake DeGray.  It was great to see family I only get to see once a year.  It’s nice to get caught up with everyone and hear what’s going on in their lives.  I love how different family is from each other, but we’re all connected in this weird concoction.  It’s kind of interesting to see what conversations take place and which relatives have changed the most throughout the year.  Some years, there will have been a death and we’ll be missing someone and some years, a new baby is born or someone gets married and there’s someone new to get to know.  It’s the endless cycle of life.  And now I’m getting way too deep about family reunions.  Here’s some pictures of Bennett riding the tube for the first time.  I think he liked it!

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Now, I think we’re all caught up to the present.  Today we took Bennett to Wild River Country.  The water park is literally 5 minutes from our house, so we figured it would be worth it if we got season passes.  At least we hoped so.  They have a little kiddie area with some toys and water buckets that dump water on your head when they fill up.  (I guess that’s fun?)  I wasn’t sure how Bennett would fare after his reaction to the splash pad at Keagan’s birthday party (oh yeah, my niece Keagan, turned 2–yay!).  Let’s just say he was more than annoyed by the water in his face and screaming children everywhere.  But, he LOVED Wild River Country!  (thank goodness)  He played around in the kiddie area, floated the lazy river with us, and slapped at the waves in the wave pool.  We had a really good day today.  I think it completely wore him out because he slept for 3 hours this afternoon!  Woo-hoo!  We will definitely revisit.

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1st Birthday

Bennett turned 1 on Friday!  It was a bittersweet day for me.  Bitter that he’s not a baby anymore, but officially a toddler and sweet that he is growing up healthy and happy.  You certainly take the good with the bad as a parent.

His actual birthday was spent at daycare.  Mama and Daddy had to give the Benchmark Exam to our students.  Bleh.  But, I took cupcakes for his class, so he could celebrate with his friends at school.  Yay!

On Saturday morning, we threw a Star Wars party for him in the backyard.  Friends and family were out in full force!  It was beautiful weather, the food was delicious, and the company was even better.

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I made Princess Leia buns and Yoda ears for the party guests.  I think the adults liked them more than the kids.

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As party favors, I made light sabers from coloring books.  So fun and super easy.

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Bennett got a red wagon from his grandparents!  The kids played in it the whole party and Bennett opened his gifts from the wagon.  Everyone was so generous and brought Bennett some really wonderful gifts for his birthday.  I know he felt special and celebrated.  Thank you to everyone!

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Then, we had cake.  Well, we murdered cake.  Bennett takes no prisoners.

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The party was such a success.  Not because the food was good or the decorations were adorable, but because it was all about Bennett.  It was a celebration of my son’s first year of life.  From getting up in the middle of the night and changing 12 diapers a day to crawling and feeding himself.  It’s been a really good year.