Monday, September 15, 2008

Fun Fall Memories

We live across the road from a County Park with mowed trails, so we put the kids in the wagon one evening and went over there for a "nic nic" (translation . . . picnic). As you can tell, Delaney loves riding in the wagon!

Alan, Laney, and Mommy on our "nic nic" blanket. We spread it out by the river.

Daddy and Alan enjoying their food.

Delaney gets super excited when she sees her Daddy and loves spending time with him. Usually when he gets home, she will hear him come in and start arching her neck and head to try to find him. Then, when he comes in the room, she starts smiling and clapping. She just glows when he holds her and talks to her, and she loves to tell him all about her day!

In late August, Delaney and Alan began going to Fran's house in the afternoons for day care. I miss my Laney and Al, but man are they having fun at Fran's. I think Delaney's favorite part might be their puppy, Halley. Fran says that Laney can't get enough of Halley and strains to touch her soft fur if Halley is running by. (Unfortunately, Halley is probably Alan's LEAST favorite part of day care. We are hoping he will come around!) Alan prefers all the boys - there are TONS of brothers for him at Fran's. Logan (7th grade), Tanner (4th grade), and Riley (5 yrs) are Al's older bros. They are Fran's sons. Younger than Alan are Isaac (2) and Nolan (9 months, only 4 days older than Delaney . . . born on Delaney's due date!!!). So Alan has a lot of playmates. And Delaney will be a tough girl, because at day care she is the only girl!!

I have the privilege of job sharing with Nolan's mommy, Diana Smith, this year. We are splitting a third grade classroom morning and afternoon. It is truly a dream job for me right now. It is the perfect amount of working in the adult world (as much as 3rd grade can be considered the adult world!) and spending time with my kids. And I am amazed, but with every boy in my class, as I look at them each day, I see Alan's face. Maybe that's why God gave me quite a number of "difficult" boys this year . . . because somehow compassion for them is just oozing out of me. I love those boys, and having a boy of my own gives me a small glimpse into how those boys in my classroom are viewed by their moms. And somehow, that helps.

Laney has been able to put puffs into her mouth quite successfully for a few days now. She is also more dexterous when playing with toys. Today she was able to take the rings off of her ring post. She was quite proud of herself. She doesn't have teeth yet, so not eating anything that requires chewing! But I love that toothless grin, and I will enjoy it as long as it lasts. Fran probably will too . . . because if I remember correctly, my last child's teething experiences drove her to need a glass of wine after a full day with him. :) Hope Laney's a little calmer!

Well, it's getting late. Over and out.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Goodbye, Dave

On August 5th, we lost Delaney's future step-grandpa, Dave. He passed away at his home from a heart attack. He meant so much to Grandma Gloria and to all of us, and we are all grappling with this loss. I have posted a couple of pictures from our recent trip to the Water Park in Alexandria. As you can see, Dave loved Alan and Delaney as though they were his grandchildren. That day at the Water Park, he held Delaney the entire time while Alan and Grandma Gloria and I went swimming. He didn't mind . . . in fact, he even claimed she was a "chick magnet" since all the ladies would smile at him and make conversation with him while he held her.

Dave and Delaney

I am sad to think that my kids will not have the chance to know Dave. He loved Grandma Gloria so very much, and Alan and Delaney too. I look forward to telling them about him when they are older. He made a difference in many kids' lives as a teacher and a coach at Proctor High School. His daughter, Ashley, meant everything to him. What he meant to us was a kind step-grandpa who always had time to play with cars, help Alan build with his "gears", help Grandma Gloria babysit for the weekend, or hold our little baby girl. Dave, you are and always will be dearly missed.