Family Recap: June 2020 {Part 1}

Family Recap: June 2020 {Part 1}

Often during summertime I’ll do weekly recaps rather than monthly but since our lives aren’t NEARLY as busy as usual I thought I’d just stick with monthly recaps through summer but split them into two parts πŸ™‚

Family Fun

We were SO thankful when our church reopened this month! I’m really proud of our leadership and congregation and how they have handled everything.

They started back with JUST morning worship. We have one time to come to the building to be part of the worship service and it’s also live streamed for those who aren’t comfortable being in the building.

Our church building is super old and is multiple super old buildings connected together so it’s tricky to be able to utilize a lot of the recommended safety measures regarding having class and such but we have several large seating areas perfect for socially distanced worship.

The service is live streamed on the internet for those at home as well as in multiple locations throughout the building for anyone who would like to be present but also have more distance.

Zach is a deacon and was as hands on in the process as he could be to help! He and Kye went on the first Sunday back (and several after as well) to be at the doors greeted people and handing out the Lord’s Supper.

I drove separate with the other kids and DIED LAUGHING when I was greeted by a masked and gloved Kye haha He and I both started just cracking up.

Our church also has set up collection boxes for our contribution and the kids had SO MUCH to give after so many weeks of saving up their chore earnings.

It felt AMAZING to be back together with our church family. I felt very overcome with emotion during the first song…and then I remembered I have a wild toddler to keep up with during services haha! He def took some time to get back in that groove!

We are members of the church of Christ…you can learn more about it here!

Carter turned 6 this month and we celebrated at Casey’s house! The kids had a blast and it was so cute watching Spear and Cam play together. It was obvious they are both “speech therapy kids” because they labeled EVERY TOY as they were playing! Tessie was also super excited to be matching with Ella πŸ™‚

We LOVE the Hall Family! All of our kids adore each other and I value the natural bond Tiffany and I share so much!

We had several swim days and late nights hanging out and time with their family will be among our favorite summer memories this year for sure!

Whew being at home SO MUCH def created messier rooms than this mama can handle for too long!

Growing up my mom implemented “the pillow monster.” We’d clean our rooms and then the Pillow Monster” would come and put anything that was NOT cleaned up in a pillowcase. I honestly can’t remember what happened after that…I’m pretty sure we probably earned it back or maybe she got rid of it?

I had to bust out the Pillow Monster for the first time with my crew and Britt was the only casualty. She did earn everything back within a few days and has done much better at truly cleaning her room since!

We had our family pictures taken with Lindsay out at Katie’s house and it was gorgeous! I love anytime I get to spend with two of my favs!

I also love that the big kids are old enough now where I can bribe them with a big treat at home rather than having to feed them little treats throughout the session in order to get the smiles!

We had a girls night out with a few friends (Katie, Rachel, Lindsay and I – the MNSSHP crew!) and it was so good for me to get OUT a bit!

Zach and I have a running joke that he claims I leave my car on empty when he’s driving it so he’ll have to fill it with gas…I took his truck to dinner and guess what? He left it on empty πŸ˜‰

We celebrated our favorite Dad on Father’s Day and also pigged out on our favorite cookies in his honor. As a reminder Fresh Beginnings have THE BEST cookies and I have a discount code that never expires! Use code EMILY20 for 20% off your entire order πŸ™‚

Zach’s hobby during the lack of sports has been to work with the kids on a tree house in the woods area behind our house. The kids are SO excited!

They watch a lot of “treehouse shows” with Daddy and have grand plans for their future hang out spot!

When I went out of town on my girl’s weekend G-Mama took the kids and met up with the cousins for some snow cones! Cute babies πŸ™‚

I’ve always loved that summer gives so much time to spend with my babies! This summer is THE longest EVER and it’ll be tough for my mama heart when (if?) they go back to school this fall.

We love our morning walks exploring together and this time has been a time where I’ve reminded myself that quality time doesn’t have to be going and doing and having epic adventures – just sitting and talking is so valuable too!

Kye

Kye does so well entertaining himself but also showing patience with his younger siblings and including them in the things he enjoys.

I often feel bad for Kye as the girls buddy up and always have a BFF to play with and he is frequently left out and struggles to often convince them to do more “boyish” type stuff with him.

I try to encourage the girls to do things with him that HE enjoys from time to time too!

Kye really loves games and finding ones he can enjoy solo or enjoy one on one too.

G-Mama taught him how to play Solitaire this month and he’s LOVING it. I also pulled down Mastermind and enjoyed playing it with him. Scrabble is also a favorite – although Mommy doesn’t quite have the patience for it πŸ˜‰

The kids also love building tall towers and I shared this idea in a post recently and Ky end Britt both loved it!

Kye is the least interested in our pet ownership of our sweet Mortimer turtle and I think this month was the first time he actually held him πŸ˜‰

A couple of Kye’s friends in the neighborhood started riding bikes and inviting Kye and it’s been so good for him to go and hang with friends a bit. Their parents have the rule that they can spend time together as long as they stay on their bikes to encourage social distancing.

Kye had many bike ride days with his friends and loved spending that time together.

We had a family movie night watching the new Sonic movie and it was funny because Kye watched it with the Hall boys when we went camping and said he couldn’t wait for Daddy to see it because “there is this guy in it who is JUST like Daddy”…aka Jim Carrey haha!

Spear is getting to an age where he can play with Kye and it’s enjoyable for Kye too. Kye started ASKING this month to have Spear come play in his room alone to have some brother play time. SO SWEET.

Britt

Lately I have been non-stop complimenting Britt. I know when Kye turned 9 we hit an emotional stage and some attitude and such but I feel like with Britt she’s getting LESS attitude and LESS emotional as she reaches age nine. Crossing fingers it’s a trend that continues.

But Britt has really been SO great with her overall outlook. I think the pandemic has taught us all a lot in many ways and I think it’s helped Britt realize that the world is big and that tough things happen and she’s not been sweating the small stuff as well.

I’m very proud of her!

She is still working on being okay to do things on her own. She often gets very upset when others don’t want to do what SHE wants to do and then will become emotional and say she’s being left out. When she COULD be included IF she wanted to play with the others are playing.

I’m trying to help her learn that she can choose not to play but that is a different thing than actually being left out. I’ve been encouraging her to use these moments to explore things she enjoys!

She’s loved using these blocks of time to play with kinetic sand, put together puzzles and even build a tall lego tower πŸ™‚

She is also doing great with her bike riding for walks and I think we’re about ready to remove those training wheels. Some mornings on our walks she opts to walk rather than ride the bike and those are my favorite mornings.

I’m learning how to best connect with each of my kids. Kye really opens up best at bedtime and it’s why I’m hardcore about spending quality time together at bedtime, but Britt seems to open up more when being active. While going on our walks she will really talk about deeper topics than I can get her to open up about at bedtime! We chatted about her future husband and wondered what he’s doing right now.

I have been watching The Amazing Race with the big three some and Britt cracks me up when we watch it. She’s ALWAYS saying “Wait! Mommy needs to take a picture” and asking questions like “They are underwater…how will Mommy take a picture?” Which ironically are the SAME thoughts I’ve had while watching that show – are they allowed to take pics? It’d be a MUST for me to be on it!

The BIG NEWS this month is BRITT was FINALLY able to start back at gymnastics!!! She is so, so, SO happy to have found a new gym (hers decided to close after the shut-down). She said to me “there are some good things about corona – like me getting to have this new gym!” And she’s right. The owner is SO SWEET and I LOVE that the focus at this new gym is on learning through having FUN too.

She is so thankful to have her passion back!

Britt also went through a quarantine growth spurt. Like major. She’s now wearing a size 10/12 due to length (waist still a size 8) and with her growth spurt we hit the stage where one piece bathing suits just don’t work.

They are either too low in the chest or super saggy in the rear. I really am not a fan of bikinis and never even wanted to explore tankinis because I feel like they are the “gateway drug” to bikinis haha. I did a TON of hunting and ordered a ton of different ones and finally settled on Land’s End as I really like how theirs are more athletic looking and still very youthful!

She wears a size 10/12 in these tops and a size 8 in these bottoms. So far I’m super impressed with the quality and she loves how easy it is to use the bathroom and calls them her “boo-kinis” ha!

Tess

Tess has never shown interest whatsoever in any sort of activity or sport. We are big on not pressuring our kids when it comes to sports. We let them lead and always offer but don’t push and always tell them we’ll support anything they want to try!

When Tess was very little she was SO DANG STRONG. Like crazy strong and so tiny! I really thought SHE would be the gymnast. We even had her try it a bit when Britt first started because they had a class at close to the same time and since we were already taking Britt why not? But Britt found her PASSION while Tess was just kinda like “eh whatever” so we ended up having Tess stop in order to allow us to afford to pay for Britt to continue advancing in her levels of classes.

Tess hasn’t asked to go back since nor has she asked to do anything else.

But the day we took Britt to her new gym Tess got in the car and said “I want to do gymnastics too!” It’s SUCH a testament to the owner of the new gym because she creates such a welcoming and fun environment where even my non-sports, non-super social kid is begging to go!

It’s also such a blessing as the cost of their classes is MUCH more affordable than we were paying – both girls can go and it’s still less than the cost of JUST Britt’s old class.

Tess was SO excited for her first day and LOVES going! Both girls are so, so happy and are excited to be in the same class together in August too!

Love our little gymnasts!

Tess cracks me up when we go on our morning walks in 90 degree weather and she insists on wearing hats, long sleeves, pants and fleece jackets πŸ˜‰

I am very proud at the way Tess loves to HELP! She takes initiative and will jump in and help without even asking or waiting to be asked.

One morning I came out and she was making breakfast for all of the kids completely on her own – and she was setting a good example for her older siblings as Britt quickly jumped into help as well.

Tess is for sure a words of affirmation love language and I try to make sure I really build her up in that way. She loves doing things for others, and just GLOWS when she is appreciated for those efforts.

Tess has gone through a bit of a growth spurt as well and I thought we had probably reached the day where it was time to turn her forward in her car seat…but nope! She’s still about 2 inches below the height limit for rear facing.

Tessie loves playing games and quality one on one time. She loves playing in her room with Britt and with me too! It’s a struggle for me because I’m not a natural “play parent” but I try!

Daddy has been working hard on Tess’s new room and the kids LOVE using it as a hangout for now before it’s totally ready for her to move in πŸ™‚

I love that Tess is still very much in the stage of dressing up. I adore this stage and I will be so sad when both my girls pass the age where dressing up is FUN!

She is my first kid though to really LOVE having her picture taken. Yall know I never turn down that opportunity – even when I’m using the bathroom haha!

Not only does Tess love being in front of the camera, but she loves being behind it too and will ask to take pictures and is getting pretty good at it! She may be my future Instagram sidekick πŸ˜‰

Spear

I am very, very hardcore about survival swim for all of my kids and I’m so thankful Spear was able to have his water safety lessons with Tiny Bubbles prior to Ms Margie moving!

I have had all of my kids take survival swim for so many years now that I’m quite the pro myself.

I started to work with Spear when we started swimming and I realized right away that there was just no way I’d be able to get him where he needed to be in order to be safe in the water and for us to ENJOY the pool with him this summer.

I called around and was SO LUCKY to get ahold of someone local who had JUST started their swim lessons and I was able to get him in for a refresher.

All it took was literally TWO lessons in the pool with his instructor and he was floating like a pro again! Whoop whoop!

I truly think some kids just need an outside authority figure beyond Mommy and Daddy to really respond well and this was def the case with Spear and swim. He needed that instructor to get him where he needed to be.

He LOVED swim. He smiled the whole time and the kids enjoyed cheering him on.

We went for 8 or 9 mornings (10 minutes each lesson) and he now jumps in on his own and floats beautifully!

He even fell in and did exactly what he needed to do. PROUD MOM πŸ˜‰ His ability to swim and float has allowed us ALL to have more fun in the pool this summer together!

Spear hit some big milestones this month. We FINALLY transitioned him out of the high chair. I know, I know. He’s 2.5 haha. But he’s my wild man and I just really didn’t want to deal with the transition and I have NO regret waiting.

He LOVES the freedom of sitting at the bar and at the table but whew it’s def more messy and takes a lot more patience to keep getting onto him to remind him to stay seated.

We also transitioned him out of his toddler seat for movie time. He loves sitting on the couch with the big kids and snuggling with them. It was also fun watching a family movie together and getting to snuggle with him too πŸ™‚

AND he is done with any sort of little potty or potty seat and likes to just sit on the big toilet now. He will also often go in and use the bathroom on his own too! YAY for that!

He is still wearing a diaper for naps and nighttime sleep and he poops during those times which is annoying but also just part of this stage.

He is getting old enough now where all the kids are starting to enjoy playing with him more and more. The kids will ASK to have time with Spear which makes my heart so happy.

They all play so well together and everyone is so patient with Spear and good about gearing things towards his age.

Spear is SO TOUGH. It amazes me. I shared this photo of his ant bites to show just how tough he is. I didn’t even KNOW he’d been bit by ant bites until I went to put him to bed and saw his foot covered in the bites. He never cried. Never complained. Never even drew attention to it. SO CRAZY!

A video should auto play at the start of this post showcasing all of our family fun so far this month!

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Emily Parker

Hey Y’all, I’m Emily! I’m a stay at home mom and consider parenting to be my passion. Disney is my happiest place and I love making memories as a family together. I’m a big believer in transparency and share all of my real-life moments as a mother of four.

My work has been featured on Love What Matters, Today Parenting and Babywise.Life. I’m also honored to be a member of the Babywise Friendly Blog Network.

You can read more about our family on my About Me page. Also be sure to follow along with me on Instagram, FacebookΒ and Pinterest!

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