Since our vacation, Todd, Isabella and I have been back to the grind. Mercer went back to camp. He was in the paper again for a field trip that camp was preparing for -- field day at another Police Athletic League camp (yes - this is a small town paper!) There are things that he complains about from every camp he goes to... but... he seemed to mostly enjoy this one -- which focused on sports and some lessons mixed in (@ the Police Athletic League - PAL).
Todd and I liked the fact that he got to do some "extras" with this camp: they took the kids to a Braves game, they took the kids to a performing arts hall to see a production of Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat. On the last day of camp, they gave the kids a backpack with some school supplies in it as well. It was well worth it and I would recommend PAL camp. It seems that there was a limited amount of interaction with the police, but there was some.
Mercer's last week of summer camp was, again, the LEGO camp. This time, however, he WON his week there. (Which made Todd and me happy b/c we didn't have to shell out $200+ to send him!) We went to a local Chick-fil-a in May. They had this contest where kids build cars and then people vote on it. His won more votes than the other kids. I actually really like the contest photos -- he looks sort of angelic in them. Maybe others thought so too?
He had a good time at his week of camp & they constantly sent out photos so you could see how the kids were doing throughout the week.
I'm glad he had a good "last week" because the week before that was really rough for him. Mercer had an accident. He came downstairs from bed to go to the bathroom. He sprayed air freshener, but the nozzle was not pointed "out." It sprayed directly into his eyes. He was screaming in agonizing pain. Todd flushed his eyes under running water in the sink, while I comforted Isabella who was startled awake from the screams. All the while we're calling the on-call pediatrician. They recommended that we call poison control - which we did. They gave us instructions for what to look for to see if we needed to take him to the ER. They were so calm and informative. So level-headed. We followed their instructions, and determined that he did not need to go. Todd took him to the pediatrician the next day for a doctor's visit on another matter + an eye test -- which he passed with no problem. (whew!) how scary!! The "other matter" mentioned above.... Mercer had croup! He hasn't had it in 3 or 4 years. It's not as bad as you get older. I don't believe it's life-threatening like it is for a baby or toddler, but it did hurt his throat pretty bad. <poor guy!>
The weekend before that, Isabella got sick! One of the things we were supposed to do was to have a high school friend & her daughter over for an art lesson. We pushed it back to the following weekend and caught up. It has been more than 4 years since getting together because our friend + another mutual friend we called to meet up with us afterwards have never met Isabella. OK - doing a one-on-one art lesson with our friend's 6 year old was fun! This picture is at pizza on the square after the lesson & the little girl in the middle is the budding artist~
On a side note. The 7 year old girl on the left - her name is Olivia. Isabella's *FAVORITE* name is Olivia. She names all of her dolls, worms, rollie-pollies, birds flying in the sky "Olivia." :)
Speaking of the square.... it is CRAZY how much activity there is now that Pokemon GO game has been going on. Todd loaded the app on our phones so that Mercer (and he?) can play. There is a giant group of virtual "animals" that people can catch on their phones near the courthouse. We noticed 40-50 people just hanging out around the plaza at the courthouse since it started. One day, there were well over 100 people.... these people just sitting around on their phones! crazy.
The good news is that this game is getting people outside.... and - instead of having virtual meet-ups, people are sort of interacting with each other -- still on their phones -- but at least they're seeing live people now instead of hiding out behind a game console at home! Such an odd time that we live in~
I LOVE this photo of Isabella's nose pressed against the window at the ballet studio on the square. She starts taking classes there next month and I think the ADORABLE factor will be high. Stay tuned~
We did lot of other little random things this summer. Our main go-to outing was the pool that's not too far from our house. We went to an outdoor movie with a friend. Hosted / Mercer went to some sleep-overs.
Had a "picnic" at Todd's office because a concert in the park right next to his office was rained out. (and - you'll notice her new fav hairstyle.... pigtails!) We went to a bonfire at a friend's house 'til past midnight. We visited a new pool / min-water park. We went to some events at our local library. We had some game nights / played a bit of UNO. We had some movie nights. We went on lots of walks around the n'hood (chasing Pokemon!) and working in the community garden.
I would say, overall, our summer was sort of low-key, but they both had a good summer. We'll still go to the pool for another 1 1/2 months because it's open into September. We'll try to do outdoor stuff still, but, with school activities and sports starting up, we'll get back into that groove.
Isabella graduated from the 3 year old room this week. They had a cute celebration with some performances and songs. They were presented with a serious award and a silly award. Hers was "most-improved" and "future scientist" for her love of bugs, worms, and being so inquisitive.
At our school, we have a 1 week teacher planning session while the students are off. (Staff kids come to the school, though and someone watches them while we work.) THEN, we start back the following week.
Isabella will start in the 4 year old room. She does seem to enjoy our school now and hardly ever mentions the old one. We still love the old school, but, I am glad that she's finally accepting this one as "hers" now too and not just my school. She already knows the teacher in the 4 year old room because she goes there every day for after school. It will not be a big adjustment for her, but we're making a big deal about her moving to a big kid room.
She says that she's going to be bigger than her friend "next week." This girl, pictured, is clearly 4"-5" taller than she is. She is constantly saying that she's older. She's a big girl. "I can do ______ (fill in the blank with any activity) ______ because I'm older now." She also claims to be a teenager. She does like to hang out with the older kids and - yes - act like one of them. They think it's cute (for now), but whew, sometimes we really do think she is 3 going on 13. yikes!
I had to change rooms (twice in 3 weeks) but it will now be set for the school year. And the room I was in for the 3 week July session had a bad roof leak, so I'm glad that I am not in there anymore. During the July break, the kids had to come with me to move & set up my room. These pics are of that temporary room. Isabella had to self-entertain while I unpacked!
My new room is exactly the same minus the green wall. I've got to figure out how to get my new room set up again while juggling teacher training next week. This job has been nothing but a JUGGLE. Seriously.
But - I'm hoping that it will be a better year!! I have another science teacher that I'll be teaching with on occasion, but will be doing a lot of planning with. I also have fewer subjects that I'll have to prep for. Fingers crossed with will go smoother than the first 6 months I've been there!
Here's a last day of school picture with the middle and high schoolers that I'm working with. (We had a 1/2 day of cleaning rooms and taking down stuff from the 2015-2016 year (in my case it was moving rooms).... followed by cookout in the plaza between the buildings and some silly string craziness.
Todd and Mercer have a fun "last day of summer" planned after he meets his new teacher. We'll post first day of school pics soon.
Here we go again: back to the real grind.
Summer did go by a little too fast........