Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Bike Riding :)

About a month ago we were blessed to be given a wonderful bike and helmet that was in perfect condition from one of Mark's cousins. The girls were so excited and have both had a blast riding it!

By now you all know of Karis' undying love for the color pink. Her Nina and Papa thought that she needed a pink bell, basket, streamers, horn, etc to make this bike a little more girly. Pun intended, Karis was tickled pink! (Yes, I am corny like that!)

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Birthday and zoo conversations

(Finally at the zoo and trying to find a tram to take us to the other end, which is Africa)
Karis, hearing that we are going to Africa: "So are we going to see Jason White now?!? (Jason is a friend who went to Africa for missions)

Upon seeing the sign for the white alligator, Karis said, "I hope that he doesn't decide to eat us!"

(background: we live out in the country and there is a hot air balloon company nearby. We see hot air balloons all the time and they often land in our neighborhood.)
Karis: When I turn 5, I will ride in a hot air balloon for my birthday!
Daddy: Maybe in about 40 years
Karis: That'll work!

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Fun trip to the zoo!

We recently decided that instead of buying lots of presents for our girls for their birthdays (they get plenty from the rest of our family :), we wanted to make memories by doing something special with them. Nina and Papa have been wanting to take the girls to the NC Ashboro zoo for a while now, so we thought Karis' 4th birthday was the perfect excuse to make the trip!

We had beautiful weather for our adventure, but it was unbelievably hot! This picture of Karlie was taken when we first got to the zoo, as we rode the zebra bus to "Africa." We were hot and sweaty before we even started, but no one seemed to mind :)
Karis is the one who usually wants to come inside when it gets hot, but at the zoo she didn't even seem to notice. She was so excited that she just danced around the entire day, never even accepting a ride in the stroller!
Abbi Grace was a trooper as well. This was the first time she had ever been in the stroller and she seemed to really like it. Not a single fuss from her all day!
The first animals we saw were the giraffes and ostriches and the girls were simply amazed...

Abbi still all smiles...
The girls were super excited to see baby monkeys!
And Karlie enjoyed climbing on the monkey statue...

We brought a water spray bottle to cool ourselves off with, and once Karlie figured out how to use it, she had a lot of fun! (Of course, minutes later she threw the spray bottle to the rhino and then wanted us to go get it :)
Abbi got out of the stroller to see the elephants
She didn't sleep much and was pretty tired
But just as sweet as always :)

The puffin birds were amazing -- they pretty much few under the water! And we were very appreciative that we could view them in a dark, air conditioned room :)
The polar bear was super playful and entertaining
And the girls enjoyed the playground

What a fun, exciting, and exhausting day!!

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Abbi's birth announcement

I'm finally getting around to ordering Abbi's birth announcement and I love them!

Stationery card
View the entire collection of cards.

4 Years Old!

We had a very special birthday at our house this weekend -- Karis turned 4 years old! I seriously cannot believe that I am now the mother of a preschooler! I taught preschool when I was pregnant with Karis and really never thought that I'd have one of those crazy people... but this 4-year old brings such joy to my life that I can hardly believe I'm lucky enough to be her Mama! (Ok, enough sentimentality; I'll post about how wonderful she is another day :) On to the party...

Karis was determined to have a carrot castle cake. Where she got that idea, I'll never know, because she has never watched any princess movies or anything like that. But a castle it had to be! So we gave it our best shot. And in case you were wondering, I used my grandmother's special carrot cake recipe but replaced the sugar with sucanat and the vegetable oil with butter.
Karis was pretty excited about it when she woke up from her nap and saw it on the table! She had helped me make it, but when she went to sleep, it was just one square cake and a bread pan cake. My Mom and I put it together while she was napping :)
Mark had acquired an extra chocolate cake at work, and he brought it home for the party because we were expecting several families to join us for a birthday cookout! Karis had picked out some special sprinkles for her cake, so she and Karlie decorated them both.
So excited and waiting for her cousins to come!
Loving on her baby sister...
Apparently big 4-year olds can still fit in the Bumbo!
And 2-year olds as well...
Cademon kept wanting to attack Abbi while Karis opened presents
Karis was was excited about some pink accessories for her bike!
Showing off the special crown she made with Grandma...
Papa brought all the kids airplanes and Mark was helping Karlie fly hers
All the cousins were so excited about Karis' new pool! (And me,too!) And yes, we got the exact same one from Walmart that we got last year. It is perfect! (Our old one blew out of our fence and into the nearby duck pond during a big windstorm)

Karlie kept stealing Benjamin's mac and cheese at the cook-out :)
Several families from our church came to celebrate with Karis and she was soooo excited to have all the big kids to play with :)

Oh, how I love my big girl!
I wish Abbi had not been taking a nap and could have joined the family picture :)
Such a special girl!

Karlie was determined to eat the cone tower :)
Karis just smiled all afternoon long!
Yummy cake!
Karlie washed her hands in the pool :)
Exhausted Karlie got snuggles from Daddy