Wednesday, August 23, 2017

Party Time for Ella and Megan

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Since it was Ella's golden birthday this year I had been brainstorming big surprise party ideas but it got tricky. School started way earlier than normal (only 3 days after her birthday!) and we were out of town until the day of her birthday, not to mention half of Katy leaves for the summer to escape the heat. None of my ideas seemed to be working out so I decided to ask Ella her opinion and it was a good thing because she had some ideas of her own. Her best friend Megan's birthday was only a few days after hers and they wanted to invite almost all the same people (from their swim team) so we decide to do a joint party. It ended up being such a fun party and so easy for us moms to put together so it was a win-win :-)! The kids swam, ate, hung out and had a blast...perfect!
I took some nicer photos of the girls before all their guests arrived :-).
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Monday, August 21, 2017

Ella at 13

This year was a very special birthday for Ella...she turned 13 on the 13th and is officially a teenager!!!
What a year Ella Bella has had! At school as a 7th grader she did awesome in her pre-AP classes, learned a lot while helping create the school yearbook, joined the National Junior Honor Society, and participated on the school track team as a distance runner. She also got a good start on her personal progress at church and blew us away with her swimming accomplishments.
Ella is such a hard worker and so dedicated to the things she loves. She is organized and independent and easy to get along with. I feel like each year we see her confidence grow and her ability to step out of her comfort zone to do the right thing increase, which as a parent is the most important growth to see! She is beautiful, smart, funny, calm and crazy.
She loves eating delicious food...California rolls, shrimp alfredo, sausage and onion pizza, wontons, tacos, cookies n cream ice cream, sour cream and onion chips, apples, zucchini and Potbelly ham sandwiches to name a few favorites). She also enjoys watching movies, listening to music, reading, and, of course, swimming :-). She has not been looking forward to the big adventure we have coming up but is embracing it and starting to show signs of excitement :-). I think it will be amazing to see how this trip changes her outlook on life and the world around her!
Ella is often our rock in a sea of chaos at home. I love to hang out with her! I love when she suddenly gets in a talkative mood and fills me in on everything going on in her life. I love to see her funny and crazy side come out. I am proud of her when I see her reach out to others and be kind and compassionate. I love to watch her work so hard to accomplish her goals and then succeed. She brings a lot of joy into our lives and we are excited to see what she does this year! I can't believe that her time in middle school is almost over...time with her is flying by too quickly!
Happy Birthday to our sweet girl!
(we got eaten alive by mosquitoes when we took these pictures so we worked fast!)
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Sunday, August 20, 2017

Back to Texas to Celebrate

Friday morning (the 11th) we were up and on the road early and we drove and drove and drove. After some rough stretches of driving on this trip, especially for the littles, I was nervous but despite it being our longest driving day (16 HOURS!!!) all the kids were actually amazing! We stopped overnight in Abilene, TX. It was a relief to be back in Texas and to know we had less than 4 more hours to go in the morning! We had one last stop in San Antonio for Chloe and Connor's wedding, with the added bonus of fitting in one last In n Out meal! It was fun to visit with the Freemans and see Chloe looking so pretty for her special day. We are glad we were able to work it out with our trip so perfectly. We headed right home from the wedding, getting home pretty late Saturday night, but man was it nice to be back in our own beds again!
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Another reason we came straight home after the wedding was so Ella could wake up in her own house on her birthday morning! We officially have a 13 year old (much more to come on this ;-). She got some early birthday presents the day before from Mike's side of the family and we had my side of the family over Sunday evening for dessert to celebrate the birthday girl!

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