Saturday, May 21, 2016


The girls celebrated their last week of school this week. Their school also hosted their field day, known as Our Own Version of the Olympics (OOVOTO).   The day starts with a parade of nations that students have an associations with.  Since AJ is at the middle school this year, they girls got to carry the Ethiopian flag, one of about 30 flags in the parade.

Essie in the Buddy Walk competition

Chloe in the Cup Stack competition

Essie pinched hit for Chloe in the running events since she was battling a stomach bug for much of this week. 

Chloe's basketball shooting

Essie basketball shooting

Essie ended up coming in 3rd in the Girl's 4th grade competition. 
Chloe came in 4th.

The Tug-o-War competition is always exciting because the different classes within the same grade level compete against each other.  The girls class, Mrs. Baker's class, was not expected to move on past the 1st round. 

You all know the girls love to jump rope.  Watch the clock and see how long they go!

I was shocked at how long Essie lasted in the hula hoop competition.

The day ended up being too much for Chloe who didn't feel up to playing in her soccer team's 1st tournament game that night.  Essie, however, ended up having a very big night. 

The girls' team scored the tying goal in (literally) the last play of the game.  Because it was a tournament game, the teams each had to choose 5 players to kick penalty shots.  The teams took alternating shot and were tied 3-3 when the final player (Esther Ruth) came to the goal.  If she makes it, her team moves on in the tournament.  If she misses, the teams go into sudden death penalty kicks.

Wesley Waddle 5k

A few weeks ago AJ ran in the Wesley Waddle, a 5k race in our little town put on by Asbury Theological Seminary.  AJ came in 4th overall (1st in his age group) with a personal best time of 20:14.

Tuesday, May 3, 2016

Happy 14th Birthday!

Someone is turning 14 today!  We celebrated a few days early since it's another busy week of soccer and track for this boy (oh and open gym for the basketball team).  

Of course AJ wanted a soccer ball cake

Matt did the decoration honors as usual.

I realized today that I didn't take any photos of AJ opening his presents but he mainly got gift cards to his favorite sporting goods store so he can go buy himself overpriced shoes. =)

And here's a pic of the 1st birthday AJ celebrated because I just couldn't resist posting it!

Wednesday, April 20, 2016

AJ's First Track Invitational

AJ's first big track invitational was last week. His relay team came in 1st in the 4x800m relay with a new school record. AJ's only solo race is the 400m.  He came in 2nd (to the defending state champ and set a new school record for West Jessamine Middle School.  He had an even lower time on his leg of the 4x400m relay. This is the last race of every track meet and with this invitational hosting 21 school, the race was run at 10:30pm (craziness!)  I cannot imagine running any where at 10:30pm but of course it didn't slow our boy down.

400m dash

The girls had their 1st soccer game last night and they won with Essie scoring 2 goals and having 1 assist.  Chloe played defense the entire game and had some awesome stops.

Thursday, April 7, 2016

Spring Break 2016

We have developed a bit of a family tradition of getting out into nature for a couple of days over our kids' Spring Break (free entertainment!), but this year work schedules were going to make it a challenge.  So the question was - where can we get away where it feels like we're really away, even though it's only for a day and a couple of nights?  We settled on staying in Chattanooga, Tennessee, about 4 and a half hours from us, then spending a day hiking in Alabama and Georgia, since AJ had never been to Georgia, and only Matt had ever been to Alabama.  So we could cross some states off our list!  On Monday afternoon, after Matt had wrapped up some things at work, we headed down I-75.

DeSoto State Park (Alabama):

Our first stop of our hiking day was DeSoto Falls in Alabama.

The falls (and the park) were named after the Spanish conquistador, Hernando DeSoto.

Everyone agreed it would be awesome to own that cabin directly across from the falls.

Heading off to explore some trails in the DeSoto State Park

Azalea Cascade



Lost Falls

Ah, the relaxing sounds of a waterfall

The girls desperately wanted to get their hands under the falls.


Mom & Dad



Laurel Falls





Essie - very excited to get behind the waterfall

Chloe found a nice place to perch.

Chloe's dream come true - a climbing tree on top of a climbing rock

Essie striking her new favorite pose, apparently

Mom & Dad

Chloe's stone sofa

Indian Falls - located about 20 feet from the sewage treatment plant.  Not especially pleasant.
Lodge Falls

Two happy girls 

Hiking works up an appetite for Essie - lunch at the DeSoto Park Lodge

Little River Canyon (Alabama):

Little River Falls

We hiked on down the canyon a bit to spend some time climbing over river rocks:

Mom decided to relax a bit in the sun.

AJ shows off his jumping prowess.

Dad & Essie selfie

Chloe got a bit tangled up on this rock climb.


We were driving along the rim of the canyon when WHAM! suddenly this was in the way.

Also, there were a bunch of other cool roadside rocks to explore.






Mom & Dad are fine posing here on the ground, thanks.

Little River Canyon from an overlook

Grace's High Falls - Chloe Grace says, "Named after me!"

View of the canyon from Eberhart Overlook

Mom & Dad

Cloudland Canyon State Park (Georgia):

We were pretty worn out from all our hiking in Alabama, but we decided to stop off at Cloudland Canyon in Georgia and at least walk around the rim of the canyon for the views.

Family selfie that would've been better with Mom's selfie stick...which was in Kentucky.

After a full day of outdoor activity, we found this awesome little BBQ at the foot of the mountain.  That day we ate breakfast in Tennessee, lunch in Alabama, and supper in Georgia!

Chloe was pumped for her hot dog - wrapped in bacon and deep-fried.

Lookout Mountain (Tennessee):

Before heading back to Kentucky, we drove up to the top of Lookout Mountain.

We spent some time walking around Point Park and learning about the Battles for Chickamauga and Chattanooga in the Civil War.

Overlooking Chattanooga

Essie is firing down on Chattanooga.

Chloe had to get in on the action.

And now we're in tandem.

AJ was glad to participate if he could fire on his sister.

Military monument

Cannons over Chattanooga

Panoramic of Moccasin Bend

Climbing rocks on the west side of the mountain

Mural of the "Battle Above the Clouds" for Lookout Mountain

Now, time to point our wagons north and get back to the grind.  :-(