Laps For Learning

 At the beginning of the month the kids' school held a fundraiser to help fund their specials education.  With the continued cuts to education, the schools are forced to try to raise money to preserve special programs and the PTO pays for 6 aide positions at the school.
This year they had a fun run where the kids got sponsors for laps that they ran.  I was there all day to mark the kids' shirt for each lap they completed and encourage them.
 The kids were motivate by the prizes they could earn for sponsorships.
 The teachers volunteered to dress up as cactus, get pies in their faces, wear tuxedos to school, and just about any other way they could motivate the kids to reach more sponsorships.
 It was a really fun and family orientated fundraiser that helped the school and encouraged the kids to be fit.  The kids had a blast running for learning.
 Each of our kids ran 2 miles and helped raise almost $700!
 I told them I would buy them a shaved ice cone if they completed the 2 miles. 
 Nothing like bribery!
 Parents, teachers and kids all enjoyed the day.
 Hank's teacher dressed up as a superhero.

 Kaitlin's teacher rooted her on.
 That night they had a BBQ and silent auction to celebrate and try to earn a little more.  While it was a successful fundraiser and will help them keep some programs, the school is still forced to cut PE, art and music in half next year.  If we want to continue to be the leaders of the world, we are going to have to start investing in our kids and their education.

Happy Easter!

Happy Easter!
 We rejoice that He is Risen! 
May hope, joy, and the spirit of God's renewing love fill you!

Happy 6th Brithday Hank!

Happy 6th Birthday Hank!
I always get emotional on your birthday.  I think back to how scared we were about losing you then and how much I loved you.  But with each birthday I love you more and am so grateful you are here and a part of our lives.  You have a kind heart, are fun loving, a bit rowdy, full of energy, and love all sports.  If there is a ball you are throwing it or bouncing it.  You give the best bear hugs and love to be Daddy's little helper.  You have a way of making people laugh and everybody wants to be around you.  So much so that we tease you are a frat boy in the making. :)  When I think of you, joy comes to my mind.  You fill me with joy and my heart overflows with happiness that you are the final letter of MKHKKH!  I love you Hank!

Zoo Trip

At the beginning of the month Hank's class took a field trip to the Phoenix Zoo.  This is the classic Kindergarten field trip and each of the kids have gotten to go on with their class.  However, I have only been able to chaperone Kaitlin and Hank's.
 This was going to be the last one.  Sniff, sniff.
 The animals were the most active we have seen thus far and almost seemed to be performing, as though to say goodbye.  The tiger roared at us!
 The zebras came for a close inspection.
 The monkeys playfully jumped over us.
 And the orangutan must have decided to put on his best show for the Kindergarten class because as soon as we showed up, he started picking his nose and eating it.  You should have heard the class erupt with laughter and "Eeewwwww,  Gross!!!"
So many parents were able to chaperon that only 4 kids in his entire class didn't have a parent.  So we had only one boy with us.   We had a wild time running all over the zoo with my monkey and his buddy.  I want Hank to stay this age forever.  Five year old boys love their mamas just about as much as their mamas love them! :)

Kaitlin's Colorful Rainbow Birthday Party

For her 8th birthday party, Kaitlin wanted to have a rainbow theme.  We decided it would be fun to tie dye shirts.
Rainbows were everywhere.
 Hank even sported the rainbow Mohawk he won at school.
 Kaitlin's rainbow cake has to be one of my favorite cakes of all time.  It was so easy and looked so pretty!
Decorating for it was pretty fun too.
 The rainbow party table was full of rainbow treats.
 We made eggless rainbow cupcakes for Hank and for anyone that prefers chocolate over vanilla cake.  They turned out so great and were also so easy!
 Rainbow lollipops and rainbow Gatorade.
 Rainbow cookies to snack on.
 Rainbow goldfish too.
 A rainbow of fruit treats.  These were a big hit with the kids.
Our first game was find the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow.  The kids ran all over the back yard until they found the black pot full of rainbows and gold.
 We filled it with these little bags of rainbow Twizzlers and chocolate gold coins.  The person that found the pot of gold also got a real golden dollar!
Then we split the kids into two groups.  One group got their face painted by Hailey and her buddy Jess.

 Then they moved to the rainbow bracelet making station.
 The other group was making the mess tie dye shirts!
 It was quite the challenge to keep permanent dye off of a bunch of kids all squirting the bottles of dye everywhere.
After each group rotated through the stations, it was time for the famous Piñata!
 The kids all love this part of the party.  We stuffed the piñata with rainbow candies like skittles, starburst, jolly ranchers, and ring pops.  Even after the candy was out, the kids wanted to keep swinging at the Piñata.
 The final game was pin the cloud on the rainbow.  They are getting a little big for this game and were able to feel their way to the right spot, which made it impossible to determine a winner.  But Kaitlin still wanted to play this one. :)
 Time for rainbow cake!
 She is like a beautiful rainbow!
 This is what drives me to make their birthday as magical as possible.
Princess for a day. :)
Did I mention how much I love this cake!?
 It is prettier in pieces than whole.  I can't say that for any of my other cakes.
We had a pretty colorful and happy day.
 The kids went home with colored pencils, rainbow bracelets, bubble wands, and their rainbow candies.
 After washing and drying the shirts the next day, Kaitlin packaged their thank you cards with them.
We had a color filled, fun party for our girl that is like the gold at the end of the rainbow in our hearts!
Happy Birthday sweet Kaitlin!