Spending our last month before school starts trying to stay cool and finding ways to entertain the kids is always a challenge ;) But we've managed to stay busy, & I've been pleasantly surprised at this Georgia weather! Much cooler than our Kansas temps for this time of year (although a bit more humid) with plenty of afternoon thunderstorms to green up the grass and refill our pool just a bit :)
Some of the things we have been up to lately:
Playing ABC Mouse on the computer
(Please excuse the blurry picture of Jacob above!)
If you haven't already discovered ABC Mouse, you should check it out! We had to pay a yearly fee to use the site, but it is SO worth it (I think it was somewhere around $100)! I love that the kids each have their own account within the program, and there's even a timer that parents can set so the program automatically shuts off when time is up. The programs and games are very well done and my kids love them (even some of the big kids!).
We've also been busy with legos around here lately. We have a gigantic tub of them that we keep up in the playroom, and the kids have literally spent hours up there building all sorts of things.....so engrossed that there is rarely any fighting :)
We've been jumping on the trampoline (when it's not too hot), and The Hulk has even been spotted out there several times!
The boys recently all got haircuts, and Noah decided to go super short for the first time in years!
We think he looks very handsome :)
Caleb will keep his long blond locks for a little while longer....
I'm not ready for him to look like a big boy just yet, even though he talks and acts more like a 4yr-old than a just-turned 2yr-old!
The boys enjoy building anything they can think of, and we've had out hammers and nails more times than I can count to keep them busy.
An old stack of pallets from when we landscaped the backyard has provided a constant source of wood! Emily has plans to build a really cool rustic rabbit hutch for Ruby using the pallets, but first she has to take them all apart :)
We've spent many hours in the pool of course....
Still so thankful to have it and enjoying every minute we spend in it!
The girls have kept the boys busy with some fun projects. Allie and the little kids made this fun candle out of a ball jar one day while I was at the doctor with Emily.
And speaking of Emily, I can always count on her (& Sophie) to keep the cookie jar full of yummy goodies!
In addition to prepping for school, running back and forth to doctor appointments and taking all the kids to the dentist, I've been busy preparing for our upcoming trip to Florida!
We are heading to the gorgeous Gulf Coast for a week of camping and fun in the sun! Destin is one of our all-time favorite places in the country to vacation, and despite limited funds this year, we are still going to make it happen. I found a wonderful campground that is right on the beach, and for under $200, we will be able to vacation with a family of 10 for 6 nights :) Where there's a will, there's a way ;) And I LOVE the beach!!!
We haven't been down to Florida since Jacob was a baby (4yrs ago) because it's just been too far to drive. But we've done it several times from Texas and Kansas, despite the 2-day trip to get there. One of the best things about moving to Georgia has been that we are just a short 6-hour drive from our favorite place, and it's also one of the reasons I hope we don't have to move.
And speaking of moving.....
Notice anything different?
NO REAL ESTATE SIGN
Well, for now at least.
We actually had to pull the house off the market after we kept getting really low offers and finally ordered an appraisal. The appraisal came back much lower than we were comfortable with, to the point that there is no way we can afford to sell without losing all of our equity and everything we put into the house after we moved in. Soooooooo, the new plan is to try to stay in the area and not lose everything we have. Of course, we're not sure that's entirely possible at this point, but it's our hope. And if the time comes that we have to re-list the house and sell, then we'll do it without question. But for now, we're not going to worry about that and we're simply trying to live for today.
It's been so nice not to have a showing every single day!
And since we are hoping to stay, the girls are getting back into the job search. Not only that, but they are all volunteering at church for permanent positions as small group leaders starting this fall. Zack & I will be joining them, but we'll be in the nursery with the 2yr-olds (in Caleb's room)! Sunday mornings are about to get a lot more busy around here with church at 9am followed by the second service at 11 when we will be serving! And Josh & Noah will both be baptized by immersion early this fall as well- lots to look forward to!
After 6 months of being here, it's nice to finally be putting down some roots in our new community, and I hope that this will be a permanent home.
But I try not to question the guy who's really in charge ;)