Lunch Date

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On Monday, one of my girlfriends came over with her two kids, one of which I taught two years ago. They brought a surprise with them, another kiddo from our class who I have not seen since the last day of school (two years ago!). It was so nice to see Olivia after all this time. She is still the same sweet girl that I taught. I love the fact that I have kept in touch with some of my families over the years and feel fortunate to be able to watch the kids grow up to be the wonderful, compassionate “big kids” that they have become. I really feel when you can connect with your students on a more personal note….inviting them to your house, taking them to McDonald’s….anything that is outside of school….it brings you closer to them and it quickly reflects in their academics. I loved being able to spend one-on-one time with my kids…whether it be having lunch in the classroom with them, morning donut dates, or reading time with Tivo. I love being at home with my two girls, but really miss teaching (especially teaching reading). I have been contemplating putting my resume back into the county to see if there is a part time position that is a good fit. It has to be the perfect fit that would allow me to do what I love to do, but not take away from my family. So we will see:) What ever happens is meant to be. Below are some pictures from my lunch date with Angie and the girls (and Dylan).

Me, Angie, and Campbell

Dylan and Tivo hanging out. Isn’t Tivo just the best dog!?

Addisan ran over to make sure she was in the picture with the big girls. She wore her underwear proud in this picture in the midst of her potty training.

Angie and the Big C.

Christmas Craziness

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As you know, we do nothing easy in the Taylor family. For instance, in 2006, within three months we moved not only to a new house, but to a new town; started new jobs; picked up a dog on the side of the road who ended up being a part of our permanent family; AND had a baby. This Christmas was no exception to the traditional Taylor craziness. Having a baby around the holidays was such a wonderful Christmas gift for us, but wore us out too:) Between the wrapping, getting the Christmas newsletter out, decorating, visiting with family and friends, and recovering from the c-section and Addisan’s RSV…we are now catching up on some overdue sleep. I am hoping next year to get more holiday decorations out and do some baking. Below are some holiday pictures of our festivities….very low key festivities I might add. They are in no particular order.

I try to get Addisan an ornament each year that represents her. I purchased this mini-tree last year after Christmas for the girls to put their yearly ornaments on as well as those that are given to them.

Here I am at 4:30 in the morning getting ready to head to the hospital for a 7:30 meeting with Campbell.

Daddy and Addisan decorating our Christmas tree.

Addisan practicing opening an early Christmas gift from her friend Gavin in NoVA.

Aunt Lora went with Tommy and Addisan to visit Santa at the Children’s Museum. Being 9 months pregnant and waiting in line for two hours…I opted to stay at home. Thanks Lora for going with Addisan!

This was taken while waiting in line to see Santa. This will probably be the only snowman Addisan will see in Richmond.

I just love this picture of Addisan and her expression. She looks so in awe of the jolly man in the red suit. When he asked her what she wanted for Christmas, she replied, “A puppy!”

These are two of Addisan’s friends, Molly and Lily, who live two doors down from us. This was taken after eating breakfast with Santa at their church.

We exchanged Christmas gifts with Tommy’s side of the family on Christmas Eve. Here Addisan is opening one of her many presents. She just loved ripping open the paper!

As a child, we saw the “real” Santa at Merrifield Gardens. He was the one everyone lined up anxiously to see each year. Santa told me to set my slippers outside my door and he would put jewelry inside of them. Every year he has not let me down! I still put the Moccasin slippers that my dad brought me back from one of his many trips from Alaska outside my bedroom door. The ones next to mine are ones that my friend Clare gave to Campbell that were handmade by her friend and Addisan’s were knitted by my friend Ronya’s mom. My hope is that the the children will not only be excited to find a surprise inside of their slippers as they grow up, but remember that someone was thinking of them when they made their slippers–and remember giving is the true sense of the holiday.

Christmas morning before Addisan entered the room.

Tommy taking Addisan downstairs to open gifts.

Pop-Pop, Baby (this is what Addisan calls Grandma Miller), and Campbell sharing the couch with Tivo.

Addisan sporting her new hair clips while opening gifts.

Campbell slept through Christmas. Here is a framed picture of a water color painting that Addisan made for Campbell for Christmas. Campbell gave Addisan a plush photo album with pictures of the two of them.

Addisan and Campbell gave daddy a workbench for Christmas. To Tommy’s dismay, it was one that was their size and not his. I hope this is something that they can all do together. Poor Tommy, he is the only male in the house…hopefully this will help balance all the pink in the house.

Addisan’s big gift from us was a roller coaster. This thing is so awesome that I wish that they made it in an adult size! She enjoys going down in the cart, but more than anything, she likes using it as a really long slide for herself and her dolls. We had to open gifts in two sessions Christmas morning because she wanted to play with it so much.

Tommy knows how much I love having board game nights. I can’t wait to play the new one that he got me.

Some of our family friends gave Addisan and Campbell matching Christmas outfits! So cute! I can see myself buying a lot of matching outfits in the near future for the girls. Don’t you just love Campbell’s little feet??:)

Tommy taking a self photo of us. You gotta love the 1993 softball champion t-shirt and the no make-up look…plus the post pregger belly:)

Here is the best gift that we received for Christmas!