Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Hellos and Goodbyes...

Ever have a memory triggered by scent? In the years to come I am quite certain that the smell of roses and freesias will transport them back to the first day of school. James hasn't missed a year yet - his girls all get fresh bouquets on the first day of the school year. They start things off on the right tone. We're always thrilled to have the heavenly smell of flowers in the house!

Maddie always gets roses!

Josie prefers mixed bouquets like her Mom

Josie and James with Casey & Carson - walking Josie to her 2nd day of Kindergarten

Just the beginning...

I don't have any photos of Maddie's first day because she was running late and James takes her to school on his way to work. Lesson #1 for the new school year: Don't keep Dad waiting!
I'll try to catch her this week - if she allows enough time for me to grab my camera!

While we were on the East Coast we received the disappointing news that Josie's dear friend, LoLo is moving to Colorado. LoLo is one of the two really close friends Josie made this year at pre-school. (The fact that I really like their Moms is incidental!) We are both really sad to have to say goodbye to our 'new' friends, but we know that Leah, LoLo and Ross are on to a new adventure. We wish them much joy in their new home and environment. We will miss them a lot!

Leah and I finally managed to get Josie and LoLo together for a day at our community water park. We met there last week and actually found two chairs for me and Leah to recline on. (no small feat - the water park is very popular and free of charge!) Josie is not a water-loving child. She doesn't like to get her face wet, doesn't like to get splashed, doesn't want to wear a vest or floaties... very frustrating. I thought once she saw all her friends playing and swimming in the water she would want to join in. I was wrong. Josie is her own person so for now, I will just have to keep trying to get her interested. God, I am praying this is just a 'phase' and that she comes out of it soon!!

As you can see, LoLo loves the water!

Leah and Josie: Leah has shown Josie a lot of love and kindness.

The dynamic duo: Josie and LoLo

Finally, I've been putting off writing about our last few days on the East Coast because our vacation did not end on a terrific note. Yes, I did win the big $71.00 Jackpot while playing BINGO with my Mom. However, on our bus trip the next day to Harrington Casino, my wallet was stolen. I actually knew the moment it happened... I thought to myself, "This guy is not observing my personal space, he's too close." At that moment, I saw my Mom and was distracted for a few seconds. I went to get some money out of my wallet not two minutes later and it was gone! First thought was: OMG my drivers license is in there - how will I get on the plane home tomorrow? Second thought was: OMG I had a hundred dollar bill in my wallet! Third thought was: get the security team to stop the guy who 'bumped' into me.

The security team at the Casino was not really what one would call 'professional'. Apparently, the guy who grabbed my wallet took out the cash and dropped it on to a slot machine. A 'regular' player at the casino turned it in to the Security Desk within 5 minutes of my notifying the nearest guard. I lodged my theft report with the supervisor and he turned over my wallet. All the cash was gone, but my credit cards and drivers license were intact. I did notify my credit card companies within 15 minutes, just in case the guy had written down the numbers. It was a relief to know that only cash had been taken, but the security team could have caught the guy if they had responded quicker.

My Mom's BINGO posse: the ladies are a great (and lucky!) crowd to hang with!

One really nice thing about being at my parents house is seeing the all the wildlife that we don't have here in California. There is a Blue Heron that has made it's home in the pond behind my parents house for the past few years. I just love herons, they are incredible. I managed to grab a few shots of the heron one morning...

Look at the wingspan on that guy!

So, I think I'm finally caught up with reporting the news from the West Coast. Our summer was very nice and we are expecting a terrific school year with both the girls. Maddie will be a 'leader' for the Freshman retreat at her school, so she has to keep her grades up to be able to participate. Josie will start back up with her dance lessons and piano lessons in the coming week. Like most Moms I know, I will be in my car for a good amount of time in the coming months. I hope everyone has a great academic year and a colorful Fall.


  1. Michelle,
    That was the sweetest story!! Your such a great Mom!!

  2. We miss seeing you all....maybe now that our schedules are more set for the school year we can plan a lunch date. I'd love to see you and catch up.

  3. I love that James send y'all flowers on the 1st day of school What a beautiful tradition:)