Wednesday, July 26, 2017

Last Day of School!

And then it was over. Good-bye to 2nd grade for Ayden and Kindergarten for Gavin. 
How this school year flew. Granted we had a few things going on, but still....

Shown in these picture is the last 'race-the-bus' event for the year. This time Jeremy joined in the fun (and I think pulled something in the process ;)). For many months now, a varying group of kids stands a block down and waits for the bus to come up the hill, then races her to our corner. 
Somehow they always tie ;)


These adorable girls are not only neighbors but will be in the same Pre-k class next year. 
And get this....her name is Quinn!

They play SO nicely together and have begun what I hope becomes a wonderful life-long friendship.

Parent Volunteering!

I had the 'pleasure' of chaperoning Gavin's end of year field trip to the zoo. Lets just say it was an experience!! It certainly didn't help that both J and my mom were out of town that week, I was coming down with a sinus infection (i know you're shocked), and it was warm. I say Warm, because honestly it's was nothing like AZ but mid to high 80s for me is now 'hot' :)

I don't have any pictures as my hands were filled with water bottles and tissues! But in the end I got to hang out with some great moms and Gavin was thrilled to have me there...which hands down makes it all worth it!!

No joke though I literally made an apt while on the bus to hit ZoomCare as soon as the field trip was over -- I actually left Gavin at school to take the bus home so I could go.  Mom of the year here - but seriously needed some relief.

Earlier that week I volunteered at field day for the boys. That was quite fun!! I did get stuck working with a 'no-fun' dad, but I just did my thing. It was great to see all their friends and our neighbors - I didn't realize until that day how many kids I actually knew despite my lack of involvement until that week. A little mom guilt lifted ;)

It also solidified just how grateful I am we landed where we did for these kiddos.
This school is awesome. Hands down awesome. And better yet, the kids LOVE IT.

Can you spot the red-head?!?

Cousins and Olivia Beach!

After Ayden's end of year performance we loaded the Burban and headed to the Oregon Coast - one of our favorite places - Olivia Beach! We met up with my cousin Scott, his wife Kristen and their two adorable children, Amelia and Andrew. Kristen's sister, Jenny, also came in with her daughter -- it was a packed house to say the least, but man was it good to spend some time with them. We certainly miss them dearly and appreciated the 48hrs together :)

Quinny shared her walker with Andrew and then proceeded to show him around the place =)

The halls and streets were filled with smiles and giggles!

In true Riley fashion, we were up before the crack of dawn (and the rest of the household), so we went for a walk in our PJs!

I could walk these adorable beach town streets for hours. I just love the ambiance.

Cousins, Cousins and more Cousins!

On the way home we stopped by the Tillamook Cheese Factory. Another AWESOME place to visit. Last time we were there the kids sat and watched the cheese factory line for an hour. Unfortunately, this time, the whole place was closed for renovations so we had to make do with a small display of the process and some delicious Tillamook ice cream (rough i know!) before we hit the road again. Can't wait to see it when they are done!!!

Riley road trip #1 for summer 2017 was in the books!

Sunday, July 23, 2017

Ayden and Clooney the Clown

Ayden's end of year celebration was a performance by each child of a Shel Silverstein poem.

His teacher suggested/assigned/worked with the kids to select their poem. She asked Ayden to do "Clooney the Clown". For those unfamiliar with this particular poem, it is quite lengthy to say the least (and by 75%, longer than any of the other chosen poems). Two full pages to be specific.

Ms. Pestes shared with Ayden that in all the years she's done this, the most anyone has been able to perform was one page.

In typical Ayden style, he had the 1st page memorized in full before he made it home that day. And the second page lodged in memory by the time he came home the next.

Weeks later it was time for the performance; his teacher provided the wig, Mimi provided the red nose (at Ayden's insistence), and Ayden provided the performance.

He had articulation, cadence and stage presence. 
He was the last act of the show and wow...

I apologize for the video quality, we were in the back and there were restless children by this point!

What we later learned is Ayden didn't only know his poem, but ~ 90% of his classmates' as well. 
This kid --- I'm on the edge of my seat to see what God has in store for him

June 2017 - First Half

June started with a bang at Camas First Fridays.

Followed by yet another Camas festival over the weekend....I honestly cannot remember what it was for there are so many. This one took place at Crown Park and the kids did archery, got their faces painted, mingled with friends, played the necessary random carnival games and rode a bull!

And the next week we finally made it out to the weekly downtown farmers market.

 A few days later I had the pleasure of heading to NYC to celebrate my sister-in-law, Jenna, as the bride-to-be!!

Not the best pic of the city, but the best I could do while driving myself in crazy NY traffic 
(not a recommended maneuver!).

I have no other pictures, and this certainly does not not do her justice, but we had a great time celebrating and showering this beautiful bride-to-be!!!

After the shower festivities I drove to Brooklyn/North Jersey to see two of my dearest dearest friends, Kat and Sara (and their little munchkins).

It's crazy to think I've known Kat now for 21yrs and Sara for......25!!!!!!!

This is Kat and Adam's little girl Mackenzie.

And Sara and Vera bathing the newest member, William.

Vera being a trooper in our 'extended' drive from Brooklyn to North Jersey.

It is always too short and a little hectic, but seeing these girls overflows my cup. 
I am grateful to walk through life with women such as them.

Again, not the best picture, but one of my favorite views; 
crossing the Columbia River on my way home from PDX airport. 
Seeing the crisp Columbia river with green banks backed by a snow-capped Mt. Hood has the effect of a long full-lunged sigh - you know, one of the ones where you breath out all the worry, concern and baggage we carry around everyday.

While I was gone I received many updates from the crew back home.
Gavin won the most goals award for his soccer team (above).

And below is a shot before they headed off to church.

This month Q learned the freedom that comes with being mobile. But not just any mode will do, Quinn wants to walk, just like her siblings. 

It was a packed first 15 days...but we were just getting started!