The Big Reveal

We did something really fun to announce the gender of our baby this time around.  Let me start off by saying that I thought about not finding out at all.  But since I thought we were done I had given away just about everything baby thing we had, and I am a planner I needed to know.  I have to decorate a nursery before this little one gets here!!  So we found out and planned a gender reveal party to share our news with everyone!

We knew that we would be thrilled with either a boy or a girl.  So James and I went to the ultrasound appointment on July 7th and found out the gender, and most importantly found out that everything looks healthy.  We were both sooo excited, but we had to keep our secret for a couple weeks until we had planned our reveal party!  It was really fun to keep the secret with James :)

On July 22nd we invited family and a couple of our friends over to swim, cookout, and to finally find out about the new little member of our family. First, we had everyone choose a team when they arrived - Team Pink or Team Blue!

Team Pink

 Team Blue - notice that both Sam and Ava are on this team!

 We had a great time visiting with everyone, and the kids had a blast playing with their cousins and their friends!

The kids having a great time!
James, Joey, and Brandon

Sam and his buddy Brooks

And then it was time to make the announcement.  I had made cupcakes earlier in the day filled with frosting to let people know the gender.  So we passed out cupcakes and told everyone to take a bite at the same time....AND


(Excuse my appearance in this picture - it was 110 degrees that day and I had been swimming and I have pregnant face)!!

It was such a fun way to share with the people that we loved and see all of their expressions.  Everyone was so happy.  James and I both feel blessed beyond anything we can have imagined , and we can't wait to meet and hold our son!  

Little Fish

OK - well I promised to update regularly and I have failed!!  I can blame it on a lot of things because we have been beyond busy.  But the truth is I keep this record for the kids and for me to look back on and they deserve better, so I am going to try to be better!! 

We have had so many things going on this summer, but I am just going to start at the beginning.  The first two weeks of June Ava and Sam went to swim lessons.  They had the best teacher, Ms. Lynn, who I refer to as the miracle worker.  Prior to swim lessons Ava would barely put her chin under water and always used floaties.  And Sam was absolutely terrified in the pool - he screamed the entire time.  I don't know what changed for him from last year to this year, but Lynn told me that is pretty normal around the time a child turns 3 and just becomes more aware.

So I had pretty limited expectations for swim lessons, but I thought we would give it a try. Well, Ava now swims without floaties (unless she is in the deep part), swims under water, dives for toys, jumps in the pool without help.  I am seriously amazed.  She has become a little fish, and has even had swimmer's ear twice this year.  Sam still uses his floaties, of course, but he is not afraid at all and will even put his head under with a little coaxing.  I am beyond thrilled at the transformation this year, and I love seeing how much fun they are having in the pool every day!

For some reason, I still can't upload videos here, so you will just have to take my word for it about how great they both are :)