Archive for the ‘Ava’ Category

First days (several months later)

Well, this is a bit awkward, but I might as well start somewhere…

The kids had three separate first days of school (which meant pancakes on three separate weekdays and therefore not nearly enough sleep).

Owen started kindergarten, which is still going remarkably well, thankfully. He was so happy to have his sweet preschool friend Reese in his class. (“We’re going to be married,” he said. “How do you know?” I asked. “Because she says so.”)

Our long suffering middle child had her fourth grade photos interrupted by a photobomber. This will go down in our permanent records.

Ava Kate ever so cooly headed off to seventh grade. She still lives at home, though we really only see her at dinner (and at the 7:20 am carpool departure).

If there’s a benefit to reporting this event several weeks late, it’s that I can tell you everyone is doing well!

Summer sessions 

Ava took part in the KU regional band camp a couple of weeks ago. She and her best friend stayed overnight in the KU dorms all week, participating in practices and classes during the day. She played first trumpet in the concert held in the Lied Center on Thursday afternoon. (All of this makes her mother so proud!)

Ava started summer with four days in Washington DC, and then spent a week in Nebraska for fashion camp. So, three weeks in a row away from home… she’s just beginning to reacclimate to parenting. (Just kidding. She’s fighting us tooth and nail and probably planning a semester abroad.)

Last day! 

Sixth grade and third grade came to a close last week, and summer set forth with a trip to Gramma’s house. 

Ava Kate 

Ava: “When was the last time you posted on the blog?”

Me: “Seven years ago. Let me take your picture with your dad–I’ll post that.”

12 and a number of other things 

It’s been A While. Apologies!! Hard to know where to start, but I’ll begin by noting that Ava Kate turned 12 last month. We celebrated in Nebraska (a couple of times!) with grandparents and some pretty sweet cousins. 

At 12, Ava finds us (her parents) to be a bit too intrusive and curious, what with our constant questions (“How was your day?” “What have you been doing in your room for the past five hours?” “Are you hungry?” AWFUL I KNOW.). 

When she does communicate with us, it’s primarily via Snapchat, a social media platform that creates picture and video messages that expire seconds after they land in the receiver’s inbox. Inexplicably, she’s usually photographed staring into space just to the left of her camera lens. (Eye contact is so 2016.) I think, though, in the hierarchy of preteen communication, Snapchat is perhaps a titch above texting, so I’m pretty sure that means she loves us. 

Fortunately, we do know (through an online reporting system, not through conversation) that she’s doing exceptionally well in her classes. She’s also playing the trumpet – the fourth of four generations. She spends as much time as possible with her friends – especially her best friend Sophia. Also, there may or may not have been a boy in the equation this spring. I don’t know. In any event, it’s probably not something I should report on the blog – especially if it involved flowers on Valentine’s Day.

Ava is biding her time, even humoring us every now and then, until she can make her escape to NYC (at 17, she’ll tell you). She keeps busy by rearranging the furniture in her room at least once a week and building a better wardrobe than I will ever own. She’s creative and smart, and enviably funny. She is exceptionally mature and independent, and we enjoy knowing we can trust her with just about anything. We adore her. 


Sometimes when the girls fight, I make them write letters to each other and then hug. I’m pretty sure it’s working. No one is mad about it at all. Especially not Ava. 

Christmas 2016

We were joined my mom and Dave and Gramma and Grandpa Great for Christmas Eve at our house in Kansas again this year. Santa found the kids, despite a year of rather questionable antics… 

Then, on Christmas morning, we headed north to spend a few days with Bryan’s family.

Hope everyone had a very Merry Christmas! 

Santa knows. 

We ran into Santa in Elmwood a couple of weeks ago. Requests included a new phone, a puppy and a motorized dirt bike. (I’ve sent a letter in follow up.)

Texas love 

The girls and I spent a few days in San Antonio earlier this month. It was my first time in the city, and their first time in Texas. They were great travel companions (even if they did insist on visiting a wax museum…). 

Happy Halloween!

Gramma’s fall 2016 collection includes Cruella DeVille, Owen the fire chief, and the Queen of Hearts–another triple in the books!

Ava’s black dress is absolutely gorgeous – this will definitely be a staple for this girl in the coming months.  She was afraid her wig made her look a little bit crazy – but I reminded her that her muse was indeed insane.

When Olivia opened her costume, she proclaimed it the best yet. I might have to  agree.

And sweet Owen. When I asked him to smile, he told me “firemens don’t smile.” (Later, when I told him that firemen don’t cry, he said “they do when they are children.”)

This kid LOVES his costume.

Thanks so much, Mom! Happy Halloween, everyone.