Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Bella's dance recital

Saturday was the big day!

Look who's all glammed up.  
Here is Miss Bella in her tap costume. 

They danced to 'Strange Things' from Toy Story.  
It was really cute. 

Then we got her changed into her ballet costume. 

I wanted to get some nice photos of her in this one too.  The dressing room (aka. . . high school classroom) didn't give the best backdrops, but she came up with these poses all by herself. 

And there they go again!

A little over four hours after it started, the recital was complete.  It ended with a trophy presentation.  After the trophy was awarded, one parent for each child was allowed to go up and give their little one some flowers.  Andy was our representative.  He gave Bella some beautiful pink roses.

A friendly mom took a photo of all three of us outside of the high school.  (Graydon and Curtis were at home with a friend of ours).

Here is our little dancer - so excited to have another trophy to add to her collection. 

Andy was in charge of the video camera this afternoon. Here is Bella's ballet dance.

Bella's ballet dance from Karen Kilps on Vimeo.

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Our baby boy is ONE!

As each moment goes by, I find myself thinking back to one year ago. I remember each detail from my water breaking to heading out to the hospital. From changing into my hospital gown to getting wheeled to the OR. From getting my spinal to hearing my baby boy's first cry.  I loved those first couple of days in the hospital when I really got to bond with Curtis.  Those are precious memories that I will always treasure.

This past year has been filled with much joy.  Curtis is a sweet little boy. He smiles when you smile. Laughs when you laugh. He loves to be outside or playing with toys (especially Graydon's toys - which Graydon is not too fond of). Carseats are not his favorite thing. Never have been. He says "ma ma" which either means "Mom" or "more". He also says "boo ba". A lot. I'm afraid that might mean "bootie butts", something that big sister and brother think is hilarious to say. He protests when I break his food into little pieces for him and yet doesn't have the teeth to eat many un-cut foods yet. This leads to frustration for both of us. But our snuggle times together more than make up for any of that.

We love this little guy so much and are very thankful for the gift of his life. 

Happy 1st Birthday Curtis Michael!

Curtis's first year from Karen Kilps on Vimeo.

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Father's Day

It was Andy's day. Father's Day! After church, the day was open to do whatever he wanted. And what did he choose to do?

Paint the house.

We are in the process of upping the curb appeal on our house. It currently looks like a boring ol' white box. But with a fresh coat of paint, black shudders, and a red door, it's going to get some personality.

Andy was pretty motivated to get going and I wasn't going to stand in his way.

The kids and I did try to do a few 
little things to make the day special.

They made him a crown that said "#1 Daddy".

We went out to dinner at Chili's that evening and Andy proudly wore his crown.

And our house is now power washed and painted. Shudders are ordered. And we're pretty close to choosing our red paint for the door.

Giving up a day of rest and relaxation for paint and sweat. . .

I guess Andy probably deserves a back rub.

Saturday, June 18, 2011

Family fun in full effect

Family Fun Activity #11: Make Popsicles


On Tuesday night, we planned to accomplish FFA#2: Go to the Carnival. Unfortunately, at the last minute the weather decided not to cooperate.  Still in the mood for some quality family time, we improvised and went with FFA#34:  Have a Family Movie Night.

Andy dropped Bella and I at the grocery store.  We picked out a Red Box movie (Tangled) and bought a bunch of snacks. 

We technically accomplished three family activities with this one: Family Movie Night, Camping in the Living Room (which is what this turned in to), and Eating Ice Cream Cones (one of the treats we bought). But I decided that each family fun time only counts for one activity, no matter what the overlap is. So this just counted as Family Movie Night.

We tried the carnival again the following night. This time the weather was perfect!

Bella made this slide one of her first stops. She loved it from last year and was eager to do it again.

Graydon went on a few rides this time.

The bumper boats were his favorite.

He went on them twice.

We met up with some friends and took turns 
accompanying the kids on rides.

I carried this little guy around most of the night.

I carried him last year too - just in my belly instead of my arms. I saw many very pregnant women at this carnival and it reminded me of myself last year at this time. I was about 37 weeks pregnant and definitely looking it. This year was easier.

The night ended with a ride on the carousel.

A couple more from the night. . .  

The carnival is done.

But we still have lots of summer fun to come!

Monday, June 13, 2011

Our Summer Fun Guide

This is a view of our pantry door.  It is loaded with lots of fun activities for us to do this summer.  Before preschool was even out, I knew that I wanted to make the most of this summer.  At the end of it, I'm going to send Bella off to kindergarten.  When that time comes, I want to know that we really had fun together and enjoyed summer to its fullest.  That's where this idea was born.  Most things are very simple but are a way for us to really be intentional with our time.  It really works for us for three great reasons:
  1. I am very motivated by to-do lists.  I am one of those people who will write down something that I've already done just so I can check it off.  Knowing that I will be seeing this whenever I'm in the kitchen assures me that I will stay accountable to doing each of those activities. 
  2. On those afternoons when the kids are bored, I can easily look here for ideas.
  3. When the summer ends and I wonder where all the time went, I will be able to look at the "DONE" side and get a quick recap of all the fun that we had.   
It's already gotten great use.  Just today, Bella asked me what "door activity" we were going to do.

This was one of them:  "Plant something"

A few weeks ago, we started with two apple seeds.  We got them straight from one of the apples we ate. 

Over the next few weeks, we let them germinate in a sealed plastic bag.

And they are now planted!  One for the boys and one for the girls.

Apparently, it can take apple trees several years to ever bear fruit.

Not a task for the impatient, I guess.

Family photos did not make our Family Fun Guide, but it's definitely something that I've wanted to do.  And now I can put a big ol' check on that one. 

More photos to come. . .

Monday, June 06, 2011

The Graduate

Saturday evening was the big event!


The program was so adorable. It was complete with Bible verses, songs, and of course receiving their graduation certificate. I videotaped a lot of the ceremony and included below is one of the songs followed by Bella receiving her certificate and gift bag.

(I apologize ahead of time for the shakiness. I was zoomed in pretty far and Graydon was squirmy in my lap, continually bumping my arm. I did the best I could).

Bella's Preschool Graduation from Karen Kilps on Vimeo.

There she is. Our preschool graduate!

And we made time for some post graduation cake.

Bella's teachers did above and beyond. Included in Bella's bag was the graduation certificate, a children's Bible, photo album filled with photos from the school year, and a slide show on DVD. Wonderful keepsakes.

I'm feeling emotional about Bella being done with school. I'm going to miss her teachers and chatting with the other parents before and after school. This was a great experience for Bella and I'm just feeling a little sad that it's over.

Bella's excited though. She's moving up to kindergarten!

Friday, June 03, 2011

Her last day of preschool

Andy asked me if I wanted him to pick up Bella from school yesterday.  "No way!"  I said.  This was her last day and I was feeling kind of sentimental about it.

I snapped this photo just as Mrs. Stouff called out Bella K.!  This was the last time that I would pick her up from preschool.  

After the kids get outside, they like to run around and play tag for a little while.  Many of us parents lingered extra long this time.  Our last time.  

Bella was so excited that she got to take her name tag home.  She also got to keep her crayon box and various pictures of herself that were used around the classroom.

Finishing up with preschool is kind of a big deal so she got to eat her dinner off the "You Are Special Today" plate last night.

And the celebration continued after dinner with a special treat:  Rita's water ice!  Bella's favorite.

Tomorrow, she will be an official preschool graduate.