Monthly Family Recap: January 2022

First monthly recap for 2022!

The BIG news this month was announcing the news to the kids about our land! We hadn’t yet purchased the piece of property but were far enough along in the process to trust it was going to happen and Zach’s parents also presented him with his tractor πŸ™‚

Pretty sure Spear was more excited about the tractor than the land!

You can read the entire post about our big news here!

The land is wooded so the tractor has been perfect to allow Zach to clear the land in preparation for the future build. Mr. Rusty and Mrs. Charlotte met us out at the property to see it and be there when we told the kids and to officially present the tractor (and really to see Spear’s reaction). Mr Rusty thought it was hilarious to see me out there dodging cow patties haha

Our tractor boy has a REAL tractor now! Out of all the kids Britt is the most excited about the land and the new adventure πŸ™‚

Everyone got to explore the woods and take turns helping drive the tractor too.

Such a special moment for Zach and his dad. So much of this decision is about legacy and having something to pass down to our babies and it’s really neat that Zach gets to have his Dad’s tractor to begin this journey!

The land has been a great place for Zach and the kids and such a bonding experience already. I’m more than happy to hang at the house while he takes ’em out to the land to play in the woods while he works on clearing πŸ™‚

We began working on a custom house plan back in July 2021 when we thought the first piece of property was going to happen. We pressed pause on it when things fell through but decided to start fine-tuning it a bit ourselves for a while once we thought it was possibly going to happen again.

With the confidence we had in the land becoming ours we went ahead and met with an architect to turn our sketch into real-life plans. If you’re local and reading this I will be sharing details because I think it’s helpful and important to do so…we gotta look out for each other!

The architect who did our current house plans…and who did literally everyone else I know of…retired and sold his company to the man who he trained. Naturally, we trusted that! We met with Cornerstone Design and Construction in downtown Valdosta.

Right away we were both uneasy about it. The office was a MESS. Trash everywhere. Empty Mtn Dew cans all over the place. The guy who was now in charge was literally dipping tobacco during our meeting and kept pausing to spit.

Looking back I shouldn’t have been surprised what happened, but when someone you trust says they sold their business to someone they trust – you tend to just trust that! Anyway, the guy took our $300 deposit. Met with us for almost 2 hours to go over the plans we’d done on our own. And in return? He send us literally the exact same thing we gave him. The only changes were minor and weren’t even what we’d discussed.

It was ridiculous and SO disappointing. We ended up being out $300 and I’m confident it’s a scam he’s running. Take people’s deposits and then don’t follow through. We ended up then meeting with Jode from Yellow Pillar Designs and he has been FANTASTIC with us! He listens, he gives creative ideas and he has excellent turn around time!

Over the summer last summer Kye and I got to talking about the themed birthday parties I used to put together for the kids. Out of all the kids he misses them the most because he was the oldest when we stopped doing them. He really wanted to help me plan a themed party so we got to brainstorming and thought G-Mama’s 60th would be perfect!

We had a super fun date night together and went to dinner followed by Hobby Lobby for party supplies and even picked up milkshakes for dessert. I love getting to create memories together with my babies and it’s so precious to me that Kye wanted to do this for his G-Mama!

The night before the party Tess had a birthday party to attend so Kye and Britt were my big helpers. We decorated, made food items and were rewarded with pizza for dinner from Daddy. The party theme turned out cute and was a successful event – but I think my personal favorite part was getting everything set up the night before. My bigs loved working together to make it all happen and they were fantastic party planners πŸ˜‰

The kids all had their semi-annual dentist visits for cleanings and it ended up being a full day event. Kye had an important thing at school that morning and our dental office is so great in working with me so I took the littles then swapped and picked up Kye to take him after.

Tess is such a little mama to Spear and Spear did a fantastic job! Britt had a molar that was stuck and they were able to pull it with ease and no pain or concerns! We got Spear dropped at school and the girls had a little treat before getting checked in at their school. Then I did the whole thing with Kye!

Kye’s timing worked out where he didn’t need to be checked back into school and he wasn’t mad about the self care day πŸ˜‰ He loves blueberry muffins and finally got to try the ones from Red Owl and Spear was super pumped at the surprise of Kye picking him up with me and even reading him a story before naptime.

Archery amped up this month and they had a tournament before announcing teams – Kye made both the bullseye and 3d teams again this season!

A big thing the kids love about having the new property are all the sticks and they’ve been doing battles with them all the time. Kye loves teaching Tess some moves.

We went through some of their old toys to start purging a bit and it melted my heart to see my baby playing with the little blocks he’d held in his chubby baby hands.

Kye sometimes gets frustrated with Spear. Spear is pretty immature for his age and Kye just wants so badly to be able to play with him and have fun together with him and Spear just struggles to be able to really meet Kye at that level. Kye and I had a big talk about it and how as a parent I don’t necessarily do things with the kids that I would CHOOSE to do for myself, I have to meet them where THEY are at in order to have that deep bond. And it’s the same with Spear! Kye was much more intentional in meeting Spear where Spear is at for playing together πŸ™‚

Kye had a BIG announcement this month! He WON first place in our entire region for public speaking with FBLA and was chosen to advance to the state level where he’d present his speech live! In honor of the big news Zach took him to town to buy his first suit (which I’m pretty confident Zach’s first suit also came from Belk) and they had a celebration dinner at Masoto’s! SO proud of Kye!!!

Britt had a big personal goal achieved this month when she slept in until 11 am πŸ˜‰ She’s always trying to see how late she can sleep in! She’s been struggling pretty bad with a patch of hair that gets SO tangled! We are trying to wash her hair less often and have her sleep in braids to minimize the tangles.

I remember when Kye was young and would color over any “inappropriate” words in books so other kids wouldn’t read them (like shut up etc). Britt is apparently carrying on the tradition – sweet girl wants to protect her sister!

Britt officially grew out of her special ring that she wears every day and is now wearing a size 5 (which is my size of my ring finger) on her middle finger. I love that my girls love their little rings! Britt is truly growing up so fast, I had a shirt on one morning and she said she liked it so I gave it to her and it fit. It works out so nicely that the trend is baggy bc it allows Britt to shop my closet!

Britt is also our big eater, especially when it comes to breakfast food. She loves breakfast! She will always offer to eat anyone’s leftovers.

For a couple years now Britt has been listening to Harry Potter audio books NON STOP. She carries around a little portable dvd player to listen on bc Zach had some old dvds that someone burned for him with the audio books on them. The dvd player finally quit on her and we struggled to figure out a solution and a sweet friend (shout out to Lindsay) offered us her Audible credits to get ALL the Harry Potter audio books so now Britt can listen from her ipad. SUCH a kind gift!!!!

Britt also started her advance gymnastic class this month and was SO thrilled!

Another big kid milestone…she asked me about shaving her legs. I was in 3rd grade when I needed to shave so I was not surprised this day arrived. She’d asked before and my answer has always been that I’m on board to help her learn how to shave whenever she’s ready but that once you start you have to always do it. She and I decided to start off with just trimming the hair rather than shaving as it made it less noticeable but still kept it soft.

She was so precious during the whole thing. Kept thanking me over and over. It was one of those I’m so lucky to be a mom kinda moments and I soaked it up!

Poor Tessie had a bit of a rough patch this month – when we were in Colorado the other three kids had pink eye crud and Kye had some sickness but Tess’s didn’t hit until we were back in school. She didn’t mind having a couple days home with Mommy though and especially loved getting to do some of Spear’s mothering πŸ˜‰

Tess decided to take a break from gymnastics for a while and instead wanted to do some art classes for drawing. Friends from church love Art with Albright so we used that YouTube channel for her classes. She’s such an artist! And I love that she has her OWN thing that is JUST for her πŸ™‚

Tess started gifted this month and really enjoyed it and even won the student of the month for her gifted class. She also had fun dressing up like an old grandma for the 100th day of school.

I’ve never seen a child love a sibling the way Tess loves Spear. It’s legit motherly. Like she will randomly out of nowhere say “Spear is just SO cute isn’t he? I’m so glad he’s mine” just like a mama would! She truly wants to read to him and wants to get to tuck him in. She’s gonna be such a great mom someday!

She’s also going through a big growth spurt – she had FIVE meals in one day this month!

I’m pretty chill when it comes to school and letting the kids wear what they want, especially with Tess as she has a style that is ALL TESS. One day Zach called me on his way to take the girls to school and said she told him her pants had an extra pocket – yall she was wearing BOYS LONG UNDERWEAR as her pants. I died haha

Britt passed down her favorite Harry Potter pjs to Tessie and Tess got invited to a “sleep under” party which is the cutest idea – the kids get to wear pjs and bring all their sleepover stuff and hang out and do all the sleepover activities but then go home after. The little girl’s mama even messaged me during the party to make sure it was okay for Tess to have lemonade – I love how much I can trust my babies to check in with me about anything they aren’t sure on!

This month Tess and Britt asked if they could start sleeping together at night. We’ve done sibling sleepovers frequently but never on a nightly basis together. I really wasn’t sure how to handle that request! I have a half-sister who is 9 years older than me and we very rarely spent any time together in childhood so I don’t know much about that sister bond.

I asked on Instagram and got SO MANY responses from people who talked about having the best memories sleeping with their sister, how their older sister was their protector, how their older sister made them feel safe, how their younger sister made them feel valued and important. Every single message encouraged me to allow the girls to sleep together – so we did!

Unfortunately both girls only have twin-sized mattresses (something we did alter after a few months of this!). We let the girls lead and they spend just about every night together! They cleaned out Britt’s stuffed animal collection to allow them both to fit in Britt’s bed and they both LOVE the together time and I’m always all about anything to encourage sibling bonding.

The girls also got some quality time with Mema this month when Zach and I went to Savannah. Britt was so excited to bake a crunch cake with Mema…and Tess was excited to taste test the end result πŸ˜‰

I love my girls and the bond they share!

The night we got home from Colorado was LATE and Spear shocked me by sleeping SOLID until 1:30 PM. I literally had to go in and wake him up bc I was worried about him! Once school started back after Christmas break we were back to our Sam’s Jams and Publix runs. Often times the errands take WAY longer with Spear with me due to his deathgrip hugs throughout the store but I wouldn’t trade these moments for anything!

Spear got himself dressed from head to toe and was SO proud πŸ™‚ He loves spending ANY time he can with Cam and spent the month talking non-stop about Colorado and how much he loved ski school (if only he loved it that much while we were actually there ha!)

Love game time with my babies as well as with friends! We had a hang out morning while the kids were at school and had the first Book Club night for 2022! I’ve also been working to get all caught up with blog books and all the books from the blog posts from 2020 arrived.

Can’t have a monthly recap post without some Lily spam. She lives her best life in our room as much as possible. Love this sweet girl and the joy she’s added to our fam!

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