Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Little Mister Johnson County

Around when Noah was 3 I started asking him if he wanted to be in the Little Mister Johnson County pageant. He started out saying "No way", then "maybe" then when I got him to understand he would get a trophy and possibly money he was all about it! He used to be really shy, believe it or not, so I wasn't sure he would ever want to do it. But, he has really come out of his shell in the past few years. He knows no strangers and talks all the time. Nathan did the Little Mister pageant when he was little and I did the Princess Elberta so I really thought it would be cool if Noah did it also.

I finally decided he was going to do it and we were ready to sign him up! I let him answer all the questions on the form. I should have read the form better because I thought it was just information for the judges to use during his interview, but it was also what they would read when he was on stage. I could have made it more interesting. But, it included dinosaurs, power rangers, and green beans so it hit the more important things Noah cares about :)

I immediately started looking for outfits for him to wear. You would think that wouldn't be too hard - but since it was after Easter and not Christmas, the 5T suits were hard to come by. Thankfully I found him some clearance outfits online that were so cute! I got 2 since I couldn't decide and because they were so cheap - that way we would have a back-up. I let Noah have the final decision on which one to wear. He chose the vest :)

Noah had rehearsal one night. He was nervous I could tell - he said his belly felt funny :) I never got around to practicing with Noah, so he really didn't know what to do on stage except for what I told him in the car on he way there. He picked up on it really fast! The second round of practice he came out and winked at each spot and waved perfectly - he was a natural. That wink was killing me - I am not sure where that came from! Noah was mad after rehearsal that he had to wait a whole day before he could get back on stage!

The next morning was his interview. I seriously never know what he is going to say. Ever. So, I was not sure how this would go. I was just hoping he wouldn't all of a sudden get shy on me. Of course I wasn't in there for the interview but I was told some of the details and I think it went well. He said they asked him how old I was and he told them he wasn't sure. He said they asked him about dinosaurs and that he told them that his favorite was the T-Rex and that means Tyrant Lizard. The judges were impressed with him using words like "prey" when he was talking about them :) When he was leaving he said T-Rex wants to say "bye" and he waved at them with 2 fingers :)

They told him to do any pose he wanted. He wanted to do a Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle shell spin smile emoticon

All the boys and the reining Little Mister Johnson County ready to interview

That night it was finally pageant time! I was thankful for a boy at this point because I picked him up an hour early from daycare, fed him, sprayed his hair, dressed him and he was ready! I am sure it is easier than getting a girl pageant ready! I had to check Noah in and let him go back stage alone and just trust he wouldn't spill anything on himself or mess his clothes up - they had really great ladies taking care of them and entertaining them.

Ready to go!

 The pageant started at 6:00, unfortunately Noah's part didn't start until 8:00 and we didn't know that, so we had quite a long wait, especially with a two year old. Some of our family that had little kids ended up having to leave before the end - it was just too long for them. Noah had to walk on stage 3 times. The first time was when he introduced himself. The second time was when they read information about him and the third was his on stage question. He did great! He smiled, waved, and of course winked every time!  His on stage question was "what is your favorite dinosaur?" and he, of course, said a "T-rex" and the audience laughed and clapped - he was so  proud :)  He did great and I really hoped he would place. Well, he ended up getting Audience Favorite (which was voted on in the lobby during the pageant) and 1st Runner-up! We were so proud! They gave him 2 trophies and you could tell he was thrilled. He just kept looking at them and showing them to the other kids beside him.
"Noah, what is your favorite dinosaur"
"Um, a T-wex"

When he was announced as Audience Favorite

Getting one of his trophies

Noah and his "challenges"

When I got back stage to get him the first thing he did was hold the trophies up to me and say "MOM! Are you proud?! I won 2 challenges!" (He has called trophies challenges for years now, because you get one if you win the challenge) :) He immediately asked when he gets to do another pageant! We may have created a monster! He can do Little Mister again next year since he is only 5 years old this year. He also gets to be in the Peach Festival Parade on the Little Mister float this weekend - and he is VERY excited about that!

I am so glad we signed Noah up for this experience. He gained so much confidence on that stage and looked so handsome in his suit. One of the best parts to me was having some of the pageant workers tell me how well-behaved or what a good kid Noah is. That means more than winning any "challenge" - knowing we are doing something right with this whole raising a kid thing.

Monday, July 20, 2015

Branson Weekend Getaway

We try to take a family trip to Branson once every summer (at least) but this year only one of my brothers could make it with us. Maybe they can all come next time! On Friday, we started our vacation with lunch at Shorty Smalls (my favorite) and the Dinosaur Museum. We saw it on our last trip and knew it would be a must for when we went back! Noah loved it! His dinosaur knowledge amazes us! He knew what all the dinosaurs were before we could even get to them and read their names and facts. He and Ryan both got to color dinosaur pictures and hang them on the wall in the lobby of the museum :)

Shorty Smalls!

Family picture in the dinosaur theater :)

Such great art work!

We then checked in our hotel and followed by some shopping and then we had dinner at Pasghettis - a new restaurant on the Branson strip. The restaurant was decorated so cute! It was like a little city. Then upstairs they had a little arcade and a mini ferris wheel. Then we went back to the hotel for a late night swim before bed :)

They LOVED the quarter rides! We spent a ton on them!

Branson Landing

Our view from the ferris wheel in Pasghettis!
Late night hotel swim :)

Ryan cracks me up :)

We got up Saturday and hit up the outlet malls before they got too busy and it got too hot. We found some great deals on work clothes for Nathan and school clothes for Noah. Getting to buy school clothes is something I have looked forward to for a long time :) We then had lunch at Joes Crab Shack (Nathan's favorite).

We then met up with my brother's family at the Dixie Stampede. We had never been to it before - it was a lot of fun! I liked the show a lot. Now the food - the food was good, but probably not anything I would order. I am not much on chicken with bones anyway, but you don't get silverware there so that made it extra difficult, especially with kids climbing all over trying to see the show. I had food all over! But the kids both liked the "white ham" (pork loin) but they wouldn't eat anything else that was served.

Once the sun went down we decided to get in some outdoor activities we were wanting to do while it was cooler. We rode go-carts, bumper boats, Nathan rode extreme go-carts, and we did Dinosaur putt-putt golf. The kids did SO good - especially considering we got back to the hotel after midnight from doing all this!

Extreme go-carts! He got 1st place!

Ryan was a good cheerleader for Momma :)

On Sunday we slept in until 9:00 (that is late for me and Noah), had a late breakfast and headed to meet my brothers family at Silver Dollar City. It was hot, but not unbearable and the shade was nice. we let the kids ride all the kid rides and play in the ball room and then we went to eat at Lone Star before heading home.

I absolutely LOVE going on vacations with my family. It is seriously one of my favorite things to spend money on. I have the best memories of traveling with my family as a kid and wish I had more! Each night I would ask the kids their favorite part of the day and listening to them tell me with a big smile on their face makes it all worth every penny. Some of their favorite parts were not even what I would have guessed.

Now it is back to reality and summer is almost over! We have lots more packed in what little time we have left though!

Monday, July 13, 2015

Fun Summer Week!!

Noah and I have looked forward to this week for a while now - it's SHARK WEEK! I don't know why I love watching shark attack shows, but I just do. There is just something fascinating about people going out to where sharks live and then being so surprised and shocked when they are attacked! Noah will just sit and stare at the tv when it is on Shark Week :)

When I saw this shirt, I knew Noah would HAVE to have it :)
It was time for Noah to get his kindergarten physical and the dreaded shots :( I don't lie to Noah about much so I told him the shots will hurt, but not for long. He was pretty worried about them. He wouldn't let me get too far from him the whole time we were at the doctor's office. The doctor said he looked great but wanted to keep an eye on his gastritis to make sure it wasn't turning into a long term issue. He gave him the go ahead for kindergarten - then the nurse came in with the needles! Noah insisted he wanted to see the needles so she showed them to him. Then he wanted to watch her give him each shot! Little weirdo! I didn't even want to watch that! He didn't make a sound for the first one, started crying for the second one and by the third shot he was screaming "You are killing me. I am dying! Don't even do that again!" It wasn't pretty! I wanted to cry for a second, but then realized that would just make him worse so I got him calmed down after only a few minutes and we were out of there! I can't believe he is about to be off to kindergarten - this is going to change all our lives!

The next day Ryan had a check-up on her tubes and after that I surprised the kids and took them to the Little Rock Zoo instead of to daycare :) The day before my mom had mentioned it would be a good day for us to all take off and go to the zoo. I am so blessed to work where if I need to want to take off  - even last minute I can. I have been able to take off for sick kids, swim lessons, doctors appointments and vacations this summer. These are things lots of working moms cannot do but I am so glad I can be there for these things with my kids. I cannot and do not want to be a stay at home mom, but having flexibility to be there for them for special things makes life easier for us all.  The kids were SO excited to get to go to the zoo for the day with some of their cousins and Granny. We parked right by the entrance, no wait to get in, no wait to eat, no sun - nice overcast and not too hot. It was perfect!

Our theater shows new releases a day early so I decided to take the kids to see the new Minions movie on Thursday night. My dad met me there with my niece Eliza and nephew Greyson. The movie was cute - I haven't really watched any of the minion movies so I was a little lost, but Noah laughed very loudly the whole time. They have both asked when we can go back to watch it again several times :)

Friday I had to meet Nathan down town at the bank. I was on the phone with the bank as we left and Nathan kept beeping in on the call. Well, once I hung up I started calling him back with no answer. So, I started pulling out of the bank and as I looked left to see if there was anything coming my heart sank - there was Nathan's truck in a head-on collision! Apparently he was calling me to tell me he has just been in an accident. A girl says she took the corner too wide and lost control and just hit him head on pretty much! Her passenger side hit his passenger side - that is how far over she was in his lane! She was acting very strange, but passed the officers sobriety test. I am just really glad no one was hurt. I am also glad it was Nathan's truck and not my car - it would have done a lot more damage. Nathan was able to drive his truck away but it did hurt the grill, bumper, brush guard, fender, door, and marker light - that we know of so far.

Nathan has decided he wants to play some softball again so he played with a team in a tournament in Rusellville on Saturday. The kids have never been to a game (since Noah was newborn) so I decided to take them to the first one hoping it wouldn't be too hot. Well, it was only in the 80's while we were there, but it was HOT! The shade was ok, but the kids just really were not into it. So, once the game was over we went to Cracker Barrel (or the barrel eating place with the toys as Noah calls it). Then we went home and soaked up some air conditioning until time for Livi and Kams swimming party! They rented out the local indoor pool - it was SO nice!

She wasn't a fan of swimming alone :)

On Sunday we needed to go get Nathan some softball stuff so we went on a little day trip of shopping and out to eat before taking Noah to VBS at Woodland church with his cousin Alex. The kids were wound up the whole day - I kept telling Nathan we would miss them being all silly some day :)

Such a busy week - which I love! Now, to finish up VBS then mini vacation to Branson and Noah starts Leap Start for Kindergarten next week and his Little Mister pageant!