Friday, August 27, 2010


I'm not going to has been a rough couple weeks. Our car was broken into the weekend after I went back to work and my camera and purse were stolen. Yes, I know, it was completely stupid of me to have left them in the car. So we have been dealing with that. Also, the back-to-work transition has been difficult, to say the least. Our mornings are filled with mayhem as we get ourselves and the kids dressed, fed and out of the house. I have been taking Harding to work with me at 6:30 and then driving him over to his daycare when it opens at 7:20. I am teaching a new subject and grade level, so I feel like a brand new teacher all over again, especially after having been away for a whole year. To add to all of this stress, both kids have been sick (but not at the same time, of course) and Shelby is cutting multiple teeth.

But we are muddling through and trying to take one day at a time, and every day things get a little better. We have had a lot of help. My mom and mother-in-law have brought meals and watched the kids when they were sick. Trip has enjoyed spending the extra time with Shelby at her therapy sessions. The kids quickly settled in to full-time daycare and seem to be happy at their schools. Shelby has learned to say "bye bye" and Harding has made some new friends. Trip has started reading bits of the Hobbit to him at night and it looks like we will have another Tolkein fan in the family. I get my first paycheck next week, so we have that to look forward to.

Things are definitely hectic around here, so forgive my infrequent blog updates. I'll try to do better. Pictures will be coming as soon as we get a new camera. I sure did hate not being able to photograph Harding running around in nothing but his underwear and a superhero cape the other day....

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

A New Year

I was raised by two school teachers (and so was Trip). Because of this, it is ingrained in us that August is the beginning of a new year, not January. I go back to my full-time teaching job tomorrow. There is something about starting fresh with the coming of each new school year that I always loved as a student and still look forward to as a teacher. New students with their brand new school much promise for the year of learning ahead. Yep, I have always been a nerd! The beginning of this particular school year is a bittersweet one for me and a major time of transition for our little family.

Harding, who has become quite attached to his mommy this past year, will be going back to daycare full-time. Shelby will be at an excellent preschool in a classroom that is very suited for special needs kids. In fact, there is one other visually impaired child in her class. Trip, who already is present at many of Shelby's appointments, will be taking Shelby to school and then heading back over there during some of his lunch breaks for PT, OT, or ST, as my schedule is not as flexible. I will be leaving school, picking Harding up, then Shelby, then often meeting one of her therapists at our house for a session. It will be a busy year.

I had not intended to take such a long maternity leave, but I feel blessed that I was able to do so as we quickly realized that Shelby Frances would have different needs from most babies. For the last 14 months, it has been an honor to be with Shelby constantly at home and at all of her doctor's appointments and therapy sessions. She and Harding have both grown and developed in incredible ways. This time has been a journey for Trip and me as well, and I know that we have grown and changed too, individually and as a family.

The journey continues. I start work tomorrow thankful that I have had the gift of a wonderful (if sometimes challenging) year at home with my babes. I am hopeful about this new year ahead and what it might bring for all of us. I am certain that our family will be able to handle this transition, but I am praying for it to go as smoothly as possible. Finally, I am so glad that with my chosen profession there are beginnings as well as endings. This is going to be a good year and come next June, I will have another summer at home with my children.

Sunday, August 8, 2010

Mattice Beach Week 2010

I grew up seeing my dad's side of the family about twice a year. We did Thanksgiving together, then in the summer, Nana and Grandpa rented a beach house on Edisto Island for two whole weeks. Because of this, I am friends with all of my cousins today and I will never go to the beach without thinking of my grandparents and the memories that we made over those two wonderful weeks.

Now that I have Harding and Shelby and Chris has baby Riley, my parents are aiming at recreating this experience for their grandchildren. They rented all of us a beach house last week week. Nana came along too, and we had ourselves 7 days of memory making. We cooked delicious seafood every single night, swam in the ocean, relaxed on the beach, caught fish in the surf, took care of the children together and made the most of every second. Nana even made her famous beach peach pie, which my brother tasted and announced that the first bite took him back to his childhood.

Holden Beach morning rainbow (the picture does not do it justice):

Trip trying to get H to float on his back:

The ocean air was good to Shelby's curls:
Aunt Chris and Harding:

Bebe and sweet baby Riley:
Stephen and Dad caught enough fish for taco night:
Chris and I are being paid back for never cooperating when Nana made us take cousins pictures at Edisto:
Papa convinced Shelby that she did like the beach:
Riley being her adorable self:
Quality time with my boy.
Harding and Nana on a walk. Check out his tanline:

Monday, August 2, 2010

35 Years

Here are my parents on their wedding day, 35 years ago. I am honored to be a product of this marriage and to have my parents as role models. And I am so happy to be with mom and dad and the rest of our family at the beach today to help them celebrate this big anniversary.