Thursday, July 19, 2012


It has been SO HOT here!  The heat has pretty much kept us inside, which especially with boys... it gets a little crazy.  So, since we were supposed to leave for CA on Tuesday and our trip had to get pushed back a few days, we had no plans yesterday ... and we decided to taken an impromptu trip to Kangaroo Jac's again - this time with Mimi and Papa Dee.  
An afternoon filled with jumping on bouncy houses and then Ray's Italian Ice (new place we found in Richmond - definitely recommend) made for an outstanding day yesterday!  
I need to invest in about 5 bouncy houses for our basement.  The boys LOVE it ... and they just run and bounce and slide non-stop!
It is so fun watching them play together and truly enjoy each other.  Cole wants to do everything Jake is doing - and Jake does pretty well letting Cole do everything he is doing.  Even though they know how to push each other's buttons ... I love that they have each other. 

Going too fast down the slide for the picture to even come out.  There were BIG smiles on these faces, though!

Chase enjoyed himself, too.  The noise of all the kids in that place kept him sleeping soundly (pretty sure Chase finds comfort in noise, since that's all he's used to) :-)

Italian Ices afterwards.  YUM!


Now, for a day of running some last minute errands and finishing filling up the van :-)   Then, another chapter begins ....

Finishing VA Strong...

We leave tomorrow to make our LONG (and FUN) journey back to California.  I'll mention it again, because it's quite impressive, but this will be Jake's 6th time driving across country.  He's 4.  It will be Cole's 3rd time.  He's 2.  It'll be Chase's 1st ... he's 7 weeks.  He is about a week and a half YOUNGER than Jake was when he took his first trip across country.  The pressure is on, Chase :-)
I'm looking forward to getting out to CA - and being a family of 5.  I mean, as of today, we have seen Chris for about 2 1/2 weeks over the past 6+ months, so I'm ready.  SAD to leave family and friends in VA, though.  I know I'll get out there and adjust and get into our routine, but thinking about making that "break" now is hard.  It has just been so great being around family over the past 6 months.  
We have been finishing strong here in VA.... and having LOTS of fun on our way out.  I could never thank my family or my in-laws (to include sisters-in-law) enough for EVERYTHING over the past 6 months - but mainly all the attention and love and support given to Jake and Cole (and Chase here at the end, too).  It will be a definite adjustment for them not having grandparents and aunts and uncle close by .... BUT we definitely already look forward to all the memories that will be made with visits out to California.  
Here are a few random pictures from the past couple of weeks:

The boys :-)  Chase is getting more and more alert.  Such a FUN stage!!  He's getting so big as well!!  
He's practically about to leave for college (okay, a little dramatic ... but he is getting big fast) :-) 

Still hoping he keeps those baby blue eyes, just like his Daddy.

I don't even think about leaving this girl :-(  How great it has been to have 6 months living close to my sister and best friend.  And now she's about to have her first baby, and I'm going to be 3000 miles away.  Booo on that (the being 3000 miles away, not the baby - super pumped about that)!!!

You are so loved Chase!!

About 5 years ago, we started annual BLT nights with the Joneses.  Thankfully, we were able to have our annual BLT night last week :-)  SO FUN!! 

"Aunt" Jean feeding Chase

"Uncle" Ray needed his "turn", too :-)

I got a hair cut.  These days, just a hair cut makes me feel like a new person.  It's a BIG deal.  

Our friends the Kilians just moved to Charlottesville for a year and the Everetts moved to Quantico for 10 months.  Unfortunately, they get here while we are on our way out ... BUT we all met up in Richmond last week at Kangaroo Jac's for an afternoon of running around and then dinner at Moe's.  
I love picking up where we left off with friends.  One of my favorites things about this crazy life we live :-)  

Trying for a "group picture" with Aunt Jul ... 

Another close friend just got to Quantico this week - 3 days before I leave :-(  It was so good to see Danika the other day - and I'm so happy she got to meet Chase.  I think a pedicure is in our future today, too, so I'm glad we had a little time together before I head West.  

I'm pretty sure this is the first picture of Chase smiling WITH someone.  No better person for that to happen with than Aunt Becky :-)  Love this picture!  

Daddy back in the field ... and back on tanks!  Loving life!!  We can't wait to get out there to the desert and SEE YOU!!!!

Sunday, July 15, 2012

My Boys

Before leaving VA, I wanted to get some pictures of the boys.  I decided back in South Carolina that every place we lived, I wanted to try and get pictures with the family at a location that represents the uniqueness and character of the place/state we lived.  So, even though VA is where we are "from," so we will be back ... I still wanted to get some pictures of the boys before we left.  
April took these pictures for us in Downtown Fredericksburg at Kenmore Plantation.  
She got some great shots, I think ... especially when you're trying to get pictures of a 4, 2, and 6 week old.  Jake and Cole were a riot during this.  We definitely had some good laughs while trying to get them to both look and smile at the same time :-) 
Honestly, though.... sometimes candid shots are some of the best.  
Here are some of the awesome pictures April got of the boys.  Thanks, April!!!

I love this.  It says so much about their personalities.  


A definite favorite!!!

Muscle pictures (and silliness)!!!


Pointing out the American (aka "Daddy's flag) and Virginia Flags

First Smiles ...

Catching his first real smiles on camera.  It doesn't get much sweeter or more precious than this.  

Serious cuteness.