A quick summary of our Summer through mostly pictures and a small bit of dialogue from me...
The Very First day of summer vacation, we loaded up the car, picked E up from school and headed to Virginia.  4 hours and one speeding ticket later, we arrived in Chesapeake Bay at First Landing Campground, greeted friends, and set up camp.  The campsite was on the Bay, but we were just a short drive away from VA Beach.  The beach was crowded.  The water, take your breath away cold.  The weather, HOT.  The sunsets, Take Your Breath Away Gorgeous. We had a great weekend visiting friends and making new ones.  The kids (and adults) had a blast!  E got to sleep in a separate tent with his bud for the first time, he LOVED it!  The campground sat under tons of large live oak trees, it was awesome and made the perfect spot for hanging the hammock and relaxing the day away.  This trip marked the beginning of summer.  Fun and Perfect.
A friend in the hall is starting Kindergarten this year.  Her parents threw a nice party in their back yard.  All the kids from our hall were there (all 30 of them) then there were friends from surrounding congregations.  Everything was so organized with the help of the friends and their large family.  They had tons of fun crafts for the kids to do.  Everything was Mickey and Minnie Mouse themed, with mouse ears and everything.  They had face painting by Jamie of Jamie's Paint Boxes.  A Professional Photographer (my sis-in-law) Sarah, of Sarah Michelle Photography.  Cotton candy (somehow the hubby and I got put on cotton candy duty...it was yummy).  And freshly popped pop corn for the outdoor Disney movies that were played after dark.  It was really nice.  And a lot of fun spending time with the friends.
The kids got to meet their Great Grandmother for the FIRST time!!  My Grandmother, is 82 years old.  She is the most independent woman I've ever known.  This woman can literally do anything.  From being an amazing cook to making & sewing leather seats for her husbands newly restored hot rod.  She also has a wickedly green thumb.  She can grow anything.  Seriously, she's awesome.  She's lived in almost every single state in the US.  And when she was young, she was the spitting image of Ingrid Bergman.  My Grandfather passed away 8 years ago this August.  He was the best story teller around.  We called him Papa Bear.  She lives in a state that's a 12 hour drive from us and 500 miles away from her closest child.  She's a Regular Pioneer.  She fell and broke her hip in January and she is still pioneering.  My role model.  She flew in for a week to stay with her oldest son, my dad, and go with him to the convention.  My dad had us over to his place after the meeting so we went over for the day and went to his meeting and had dinner with the family.  The kids fell instantly in love with their great grandma!  I see a road trip in the near future!!!  I wish we lived closer to them.  When I was 7 they moved out of state and have moved farther and farther away from us over the years.  It really stunk not having them close by to get to know better and be apart of each other's lives.  When I was 5, my grandmother taught me how to cook.  She taught my sister how to sew.  We would always joke that put together, we'd make a pretty awesome house wife!  To this day, my sister doesn't cook, and I can't sew.  My sister sells her own clothing line and I...don't own my own restaurant.  But I still enjoy cooking.  My Grandmother is a pretty amazing woman and I'm thankful that my kids finally got to meet her.  I hope that they will get to enjoy many more visits with her and get to know her a lot better.  Oh and did I mention, my Grandmother owns an Iphone...and I don't.  Love you Grandma!
Story-Time and the Park with Friends.  Seriously, I KNOW I've taken more pictures than this.  I know I'll find them eventually.  But for now, this is all I've got.  deal.
A short trip to Myrtle Beach with the 2 kids and friends and almost cousins.  Short and sweet.  The water was perfect.  We went to dinner at an all you can eat crab leg bar.  I ate all I could.  The baby in my belly did not thank me.  I probably ate near 20 ibs of crab legs.  Yeah, I regretted it.  Can you believe that I've been to the beach twice this year and I didn't get burned?!  Thank you spf 80!  
And last but not least, there was a kid party thrown by some friends for all the kids in the area that were interested.  They had an awesome large water slide that I'm pretty sure X-rays would confirm whiplash for anyone who rode it.  I was bummed that I couldn't give it a go.  Perhaps next summer when there isn't a little bundle of sweet life growing in my belly!
So this sums up our summer.  (Not really) but I'm out of pictures.  It's funny how at some events I remember to pull out my camera, and other times I forget completely.  Oh well.  All in all, for only 5 1/2 weeks of summer vacation, we packed in a lot of fun events.  There's more to tell, but I have mommy brain and I'm sure you're completely burned out by this long, over stimulating post.  Tah tah for now!
As of a few days ago, summer became officially over for this household as my little man went off to Second Grade.  I'll admit that him starting second grade has been a lot harder for me to handle than him going into first.  I'm sure it has a lot to do with my being pregnant and all those hormones, but I was very emotional about it all.  Not to the point of tears, but just an overwhelmed sense of lost time and him growing up before my eyes.  And maybe the fact that I officially am down to the last year with my girl before she starts school next year.  I have a very vivid memory of second grade.  I did a lot in second grade.  I got chicken pox in second grade, missed 2 weeks of school, missed learning about the continents and cheated on my first and last test as I hadn't learned anything about them.  I had my first school crush in second grade.  I  like to think about all the things my son will learn and remember this year, every day I wonder, will he remember this? or that?  The good moments or the bad?

A few days before school started, we went shopping for school supplies.  It helped us to get excited about school.  Ok, it helped ME get excited for school.  The boy needed new sneakers, this I knew, but I was not prepared with how much his foot has grown since I took him shoe shopping in the spring.  He went from a 2 to a 4 1/2!  In 3 months!!  That is entirely too much growing!  As his school supplies their own school supplies, I don't get to do all that fun paper sniffing and office supply shopping, so we stuck with the basics...a new backpack, lunchbox, thermos, and food containers.  Guess what his theme was this year?  Sonic.  I know, biiiig surprise there!  Target didn't have what we were looking for, so we were off to Toys R Us.  I'm glad we went there, because they have better deals on school supplies.  Buy a backpack and get a free lunch box, buy a food container and get the 2nd half off, buy a crayola item and get 2 free.  So we racked up.  I also picked up some school supplies...for home :)  KennaKat got a new thermos too and a new backpack that was discounted to $7, it's tinkerbell, and glittery, she loves it, and was cheered up about having to wait one more year before she gets to start school.

So here we are, on our first day, becoming a second grader!

The "I'M GOING TO SECOND GRADE!!!" First morning car ride!
The "why do we have to do this every year?" look
The "Yep, I've hung up my stuff, my name's first, I'm a second grader" sonic pose
And look at that adorable proud sister of a second grader :)
It's official, I have a second grader.  I hope this year is great for him.  I plan on being in his class a lot, I am NOT a class parent this year for obvious reasons, and I'm not entirely sure what I'm going to do when I have a new born... I guess get a really awesome wrap and carry that baby with me everywhere! 
During our summer vacation, the kids and I read through a lot of books.  I stumbled across a blog the other day by a mom that suggests children's books and I had to add a few (ok 20) to our checkout list at the library.

One book in particular that we all fell in love with was The Odious Ogre by Norton Juster, pictures by Jules Feiffer.  It is hilariously witty and clever, even teaches you a moral- to treat everyone with kindness, even an odious ogre.  The words used are large and brilliant.  And we found ourselves laughing at it's silliness the whole time.
I had to write it down on my must buy list and of course, share it with all of you.  If you go to our library and try to check it out, well I'm sorry to disappoint, but we haven't returned it yet!  You'll just have to wait.  If you read this, let me know what you think!  Happy Monday everyone!!
So I didn't last as long as I would have hoped in the blogging boycot, but I did last over 6 weeks, so I'm pretty darn impressed with that!  I have some pretty sweet news that I just couldn't wait to share.  The picture says it all.  More updates to come later, but for now, a picture says a thousand words :-)