Monthly Family Recap: February 2021

All of our moments from February 2021!

The kids got new scooters this month just in time for the weather to start warming up a bit! Spear was SO pumped to get a scooter too and it’s really the perfect scooter for toddlers because it has this little pull down seat where they can sit when they get tired (or carry it like my little muscle man does).

Spear and Tess both got this scooter...the wheels even light up! Tess is easily frustrated with hers though because she can’t really utilize the seat since she’s so tall for it. Def better for the younger ones and I should have gotten her the same scooter as Britt and Kye. They LOVE theirs because there is an easy to use wheel break!

Kye and I had a mother-son mini date night this month and met up with Tiffany and her boys and all went to a local Suicide Prevention presentation called Unnoticed with Kevin Hines who jumped from the Golden State Bridge and lived. His story yall is INCREDIBLE.

I really regret not taking the girls with me and truly not having Zach come along too. It was a very, very powerful event. It is SO crucial that we TALK to our kids about suicide. I updated this post I have about how to talk to kids about suicide to include some of the helpful tips I learned that night.

Here is what I posted on Instagram as well:

“My thoughts don’t have to become my actions.” 👏🏻

This was the big takeaway for us from the powerful event last night hosted by our incredible local community. We heard from doctors, counselors, educators and from @kevinhinesstory who shared his truly miraculous story of survival from his jump off the Golden Gate Bridge. 🌁

In the 4 seconds it took for him to fall the over 200 feet guess what his thoughts were? Instant regret and prayers to LIVE. 🙏🏻

God has a plan and a purpose for us all. We matter. I matter. YOU matter. 👏🏻

Hearing the statistics of suicide and how the numbers have skyrocketed across the board left me breathless. One in every TEN high school students in America attempts suicide every year, one in every five contemplate it 😳

And those stats? They don’t even include data taken since the world turned upside down in 2020. Sadly we ALL know we are facing a true mental health crisis. It’s impacting us all – kids included 💔

Kye and I had a great talk on the way home. We especially loved Kevin’s quote that pain is ineviable but suffering is a choice. 

We gotta commit to being there for each other, finding people who we can open up to when things get tough, and stop being afraid to ask the direct question “are you thinking of killing yourself?” Get outside our comfort zones because it just might save a life ❤️

My only regret is that I didn’t take Tess and Britt with us. I had no idea but suicide is on the climb for kids ages 5-11 🤯 it’s now the 10th leading cause of death in that age group and only continuing to rise. 

Something HAS to change. End the stigma of mental health and let’s start providing LOVE and HOPE to each other 💕

Kye and I also went to the dermatologist this month to have some warts on his hand removed. He did great with getting them frozen off and didn’t even flinch. He had to bandage them for a bit and they were tender so he wore a glove to school which cracked me up. Gotta have some confidence to rock a glove to school like that!!!

We also had a HUGE milestone moment this month…Kye is officially tall enough to SAY GOODBYE TO THE BOOSTER SEAT. He’s reached 4’9″ tall and that is the recommended height to be able to stop using one. He’s def on the older age range and has been mortified and embarrassed by it for a long time now. Wearing a glove to school? No embarrassment. But using a booster seat in the car to be safe? Mortifying haha.

Speaking of middle school life I LOVE that one of his teachers did this…they had each student write their name on a piece of paper and then passed it around the class and people wrote nice things about them. I told him to keep this beside his bed. I think it’s SO important to review from time to time to remember just how much his peers think of him!

I was with some friends who were talking about the sweet things their kids text them and I had this text from Kye. THIS is what boys send their mamas hahah Dressed up in some random attire and wanted to show me πŸ˜‰

Feb was a big month for archery as it was the first tournament as an official member of the Archery Team! He got his jersey and we had many tournaments watching him do his thing.

300 is a perfect score in archery and is very, very rare. It’s been so awesome to see Kye build his skills! His goal was 240 and then 260 and he scored a 266!!!

It has been so special to see Kye enjoying a sport like this and especially for it to be something that no one else in the family has ever done. Everyone has enjoyed coming to watch him and Aunt Karen even came to see him and it was adorable how he was coaching her up about how to play πŸ˜‰

Kye is my weak stomach kid. I think some people are more likely to catch certain bugs more than others and Kye is the one who will get a stomach bug anytime it’s going around. He had a day of rest after a night of an upset stomach and then he was FINE!

It was so precious to me though that during his rest day he asked to binge watch VeggieTales πŸ™‚

Kye beat Zach in chess this month which is a HUGE deal for him and, not such a big deal, he also beat me in checkers…as he always does.

Awhile back Kye wrote a blog post reviewing all of his favorite reads and I had an author reach out to me via Instagram regarding Kye’s post and asked if he could send Kye his new book to read as he felt it would align with our values as well as the types of books Kye enjoys. Kye felt SO proud and I mean how cool is that?! Not only did Kye read the book but he also LOVED it and added it to his blog post. You can check out The Wendals here and Kye’s book recommendations for middle school boys here.

My little baker is ALWAYS wanting to help in the kitchen and it’s so awesome that we’ve reached this stage where I can truly be hands off. I help with some measuring and that’s about it!!! She’s a pro!

Speaking of being a pro…Britt is totally killing it with Instagram stuff with me too. I had to take some pics for a campaign and Zach wasn’t going to be home so she said she’d help. She planned the entire set up of everything and took all the photos. She was awesome and so talented πŸ™‚

Britt loves accessories and trying out new looks with her hair. I love her confidence and the way she just feels secure in who she is. We get compliments a lot from others about her confidence and that makes me very proud because I want to raise all my kids to be proud to be who God made them to be!

Kye had an archery tournament at the same time as Elizabeth’s birthday so the girls went to the party while the rest of us watched Kye. Britt loved getting to paint an alligator!

She is my sweet girl. She loves playing with hair and duh I love it too! She also loves creative writing and making up stories which speaks to my heart as a person who enjoys writing too. She is also an excellent student and got Star Student this month!!!

I love my girls as individuals and also as a pair! They have the sweetest sister bond and love being together. We had our first back porch picnic of the year as the weather warmed up and then even the ice cream truck came around! We also missed out on the Valentine’s Day class parties due to being in Key West but the girls had sweet friends who collected their goodies for them πŸ™‚

I don’t always share the pictures we take for Instagram campaigns in our update posts but I looooove how these turned out. I will forever have the sweetest memories of baking with my girls!

And I snapped these at dinner…I always want to remember these kinds of moments. Our table is loud and full of life and laughter!

When the weather warmed up we started spending more time outside and I had a lot of flashbacks to last year during the shut down. It really unnerved me! I am so thankful we are a year out and only hope our world continues to look more and more normal πŸ™‚

We had Cole, Gabi and baby Bryce over and the kids all adored Bryce but especially Tess! She LOVES some babies!

Tess is really taking an interest in golf and Zach is so patient with teaching her and she’s really got some skill!

She is my snuggle girl and the one who asks for the most frequent afternoon hugs and cuddles. She is also totally my mini-me in so many ways. I about DIED when I found her box of boxes in her bedroom…I totally have the same thing in the attic hahaha

Her precious smile only stayed gap-toothed for this month as her second top tooth fell out at the beginning of March! It’s INSANE how fast her teeth have all fallen out like at the sometime and how quickly they’ve grown back in.

Tess has a style all of her own and I try really hard to just let her do her thing with what she wants to wear. As long as it’s appropriate of course! She came down one morning wearing her jersey from our family photos when we announced our adoption plan. I cannot BELIEVE it still fits after 4 years!!!

Spear is EVERYONE’S little sidekick bff. He loves ALL three of his big siblings so much and he’s always taking turns being someones shadow. They are all usually so great about being patient with him and enjoy their rolls as his big siblings. They love to read to him and play games together and I love that having such a younger sibling helps to keep the older ones young too.

We have reached the stage, finally, where the older ones do sometimes seek SPEAR out to play too! Tess is the main one who chooses to play with Spear on her own and will ask him to come play with her. He LOVES it. I’m so interested to see how their bonds change and evolve as they all get older too.

Spear had a double ear infection during his 3 year well check visit so we had to go back for a re-check after his antibiotics and he still failed the hearing test at Britt’s 9 year well check so we were referred to the ENT. I was really glad to get into the ENT actually because I’ve always had this hunch that fluid in his ears is causing issues with his speech.

It was good to get a dr to look him over and he said that the second round of antibiotics worked great and his fluid was dried up and that he does NOT think there is any reason that Spear’s drainage would be causing any issues. Which is great news and so good to have that ruled out and not a concern.

He did say that since Spear doesn’t complain about ear pain EVER (like I didn’t know he had the ear infections) to keep an eye out for change in behavior etc and to take him in so we can have it on record and start to establish a timeline of ear infections. Most kids at his age begin to outgrow them but if he continues to have them overtime it may be wise to do tubes. We haven’t had an issue sense though!

Whew this boy. He LOVES his crib and will NOT sleep with a pillow or blanket but also LOVES to dismantle it! His game this month was take off all the sheets from his crib every single nap. Little stinker!

Spear is my little buddy on Monday and Friday and we make a lot of pit stops for errands. It’s a GREAT time for me to practice obedience with him. I can give him my full attention and work on things like standing still and waiting, holding my hand, not touching things, etc. It’s also just FUN with him! I soak up these sweet moments as I know soon he’ll be in school every day and I won’t get this time with him!

He does SO well at Kye’s archery tournaments too. It’s a lot for a little guy to have to sit quietly so often for the tournaments and archery is a SILENT sport. Even the smallest sound can mess the archers up with their shots but Spear does so well and always asks “we go watch Kye archery?”

With Spear he requires a LOT of attention. Positive. Negative. He doesn’t care. He just wants it and wants it allllll. I’m really, really trying to focus on positive attention as much as possible. Praise like CRAZY when he obeys and makes good choices, like cleaning up ALL the chalk. I mean look at that proud smile πŸ™‚

Spear said “Mommy Mickey!” with his donuts and, duh, proudest moment ever πŸ˜‰ He also either has big feet or Tess has tiny ones because he wears her shoes all the time in the backyard (a toddler 10). I’m thinking she has small ones but who knows!

Typically Spear does SO WELL at school and he went this far into the school year without ever getting ANYTHING written in his folder. He had stickers every single day and then BAM! Was acting a FOOL. Threw a chair. Ran away from the teacher outside. Ended up having to go sit with the preschool director. So crazy and so out of character for him but just proof that we all go through rough stages in parenting!

He is my little explorer. My little farmer man. My precious baby boy! He’s wild and crazy and keeps me on my toes but I love him to pieces!

Zach had to travel for work this month and it was another dejavu kinda moment as it’s been a legit YEAR since he’s traveled for work!!! While the kids and I watched The Amazing Race Zach was walking down River Street in Savannah and getting to walk across a movie set! How awesome is this!?!?!?

Leading up to our Key West trip Zach had a great idea to try to give the kids as much of the “all inclusive” experience as possible since we had originally planned to go to Mexico for their Christmas trip to an all inclusive resort.

So we gave each big kid $30 to spend on snacks and treats for the trip! It turned out to be an awesome money management lesson too. Kye learned that it was cheaper to buy to regular packs of cosmic brownies rather than the “value pack.” The kids checked and compared prices and really worked to get the most for their money. I was so proud! They even opted to save some money to have to spend on the trip for ice cream and treats once we arrived.

During this month we really started to ramp up visiting local congregations on our hunt for a new church home. There have been a lot of tough things about not having a church home but the WONDERFUL thing about this journey has been all of the connections we’ve made with fellow Christians and the opportunities we’ve had to connect and build on those relationships. We’ve loved it!!!

I’ve always tried to post pictures throughout the pandemic on the blog so when the kids have their blog books someday they can remember these crazy times. Now that a covid-19 vaccine is available tents have been set up outside of the local hospital for people to get their vaccines.

All winter we have been curious to see if Mortimer is still alive because his little container thing he’s in has seemed empty but then we’d look and he’d be buried down in the dirt. SO WEIRD. Apparently little turtles will hibernate I guess in winter?!?! Sure enough he’s still kicking and loving the spring weather we had this month!!!

Zach and I are all about sending the kids outside as much as possible when the weather is nice and just letting them be bored and figuring out stuff to do. They even played old school marbles!

Katie and I were working our way through the Oscar movies and were SO PUMPED to be BACK in the movie theater!!!! Yay for movie popcorn and the comfortable seats and the BIG SCREEN! Another full circle moment as it’d been a solid year for our movie time too!

Zach tested out the “trendy” middle part and Tiffany celebrated her birthday! Her sweet friend, Bianca, invited me to be part of the birthday fun and I was honored to get to celebrate Tiffany’s special day with her.

A video recap should be on this post sharing more moments from our February!

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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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