Thursday, September 19, 2013

Maternity Portraits #3

Our sweet family awaiting Talia Sage Kirkland, our last and final addition to the Kirkland Crew.

Mommy and her little girl

I kept the pink under-highlights in my hair just to pave the way for our little girly princess. 

Joaquin wanted to show off his belly too.

The boys are very excited to meet their little sister.

I'm blessed with such handsome little men. I can't wait to see what this little girl looks like!

The boys love kissing mommy's belly and talking to Talia and trying to get her to kick.

Joaquin calls it the "baby button"

I think the bun in the oven is done! :) We have 8 weeks left till her due date and I am already measuring 2 weeks ahead of schedule, so we will see when she decides to make her appearance.

And here is the color version of our little family picture. The household has been full of boys for so long, we are looking forward to a little balance. :) Daddy is super excited to have a little girl and I can't wait to hold her little hand! We love and cherish you already, Talia! Thank you for blessing us with your little spirit!

Monique and Josh's Visit

Every year since we have lived here in Texas, Monique Loy, a previous student of mine, has come to visit during her summer vacation. It is always a time that we all look forward to and we use it as a fun excuse to do all the fun Austin things that we don't always take advantage of when we live here.

This year, Monique and her fiancé, Josh, came to visit. One of our stops on a hot summer Saturday was Barton Springs natural aquifer pool. The boys love swimming in the shallow end and the 68 degree water that pools up from the underground cave is a refreshing blast against our 100 degree Texas summer heat.

The boys also enjoyed taking Monique and Josh to our local library. It has become a favorite of the boys throughout this summer to visit the library and each get to select 5 new books and 3 new DVD's from the shelves. This image is of Ian helping them with a cool "How to make Paper Airplanes" book that Elijah picked out.

Josh and Monique spent some extra afternoon time with Joaquin since he only goes to school till 1pm. Here they are reading one of the library books Joaquin selected.  The boys have really gotten to be little readers. 

Not only do we love to go to our local library for fun times reading, but our other local hot spot is the Austin book shop called The Book People. The boys love their story times because it is on risers and there is a secret tunnel the kids can crawl through underneath it. :) Plus there are all sorts of things to play dress up with, like Viking hats. 

One morning, we braved the line and took Monique and Josh to the "best barbecue in the nation" at Franklin's. And even though we had a crazy wait, I was happy to hear that they thought it was worth it in the end! :)

This was a picture I had to throw in there. Monique had a strange time being able to make it to the airport. The day she was scheduled to leave the plane had all sorts of mechanical issues and I was called back to pick her up from the airport to spend one more day with us. So, in the end, we all got an extra day with Monique. The boys were super excited but on Saturday after she left and all the excitement died down the boys crashed and burned and began to throw fits about 'Monique and Josh leaving before they got to do everything they wanted with them.' So, this was our Saturday family activity to keep them happy and occupied. :) The boys made patterns on their Dia De Los Muertos masks and we had fun playing "boo" around the house all day.  

We love you guys, Josh and Monique, and can't wait to be a part of your big wedding next year!

Joaquin starts back to Montessori

Since my last blog entry was about Elijah starting Kindergarten, I thought it only fair to follow up with an entry about Joaquin's school year.  Although he is a year younger than Elijah and won't be joining the 'full time academic crowd' till next year, he did, however, start at a new Montessori school this year.  

Ian and I decided to put him in Monday- Thursday half day classes at the Wee Wisdom Montessori School through our church, Unity Church of the Hills. He has been loving it! We were a little nervous at first because this is his first time being in a class without Elijah. The previous two years he was in Montessori with his brother and we weren't sure how he would take to being in a new school and not having his big brother by his side. 

We never should have worried. Joaquin is like a duck in water when it comes to social activities! By day three of class he already had a girlfriend and was hugging his teachers goodbye and telling them (and I quote) "thank you for loving on me", when we left each day.  Needless to say, he is having fun and very well adjusted.

Even though Joaquin loves school and always comes home saying he had "100 times fun" in his class, he is a stinker to get up in the morning. This is the best picture daddy got of him getting up for his first day of school! He will sulk and hide under the covers and pout and do just about everything he can to stay under those covers in the morning!

But, when he was finally up, he had a good attitude about going to meet all his new classmates and teacher. This picture was taken in our driveway before we headed to school on his first day.

And I just wanted to throw this picture in because it was a cute one. He is such a little ray of sunshine!  Ian and I were setting up the backdrop to take some maternity pictures when Joaquin ran in all dressed up in an outfit he picked out, complete with skull and crossbones tie and a fedora. I propped him up in front of the backdrop and asked him to pose for some lighting tests before we started to take the maternity portraits and this picture was just so adorable I had to include it.  :)

We love you, Joaquin! You are such an angel of blessing to us and we love watching you spread your wings in life!

Elijah starts Kindergarten

I can't believe we have a Kindergartener now! 

Elijah was so excited to start Kindergarten at our local Brentwood Elementary School. Montessori the past few years had definitely prepared him and he was looking forward to starting at a big boy school.  His teacher, Mrs. Stevens, has been teaching for 18 years and is the perfect teacher for Elijah. She seems patient and enjoys listening to his stories. :)

Here is a picture of Elijah and Amy Stevens from meet the teacher night. I have enjoyed getting to know his teacher and I think Ian and I hold a special place in our hearts for teachers, because we know what they are going through and all the district pressures they are under, having been teachers ourselves.  

Well, if you didn't know it, Elijah is a morning person! He is full of fun and laughter and is always ready to get up and go when the day begins! This is what he had to say when daddy woke him up to get dressed for his 'first day of Kindergarten'.

All smiles from the top bunk bed!

Funny faces while daddy was trying to capture the moment...

And, yet, when mommy made a sign and had his hair all done and he was dressed and ready for school, he wouldn't give me a smile.

This was as good as I could get.

So, we all pilled in the car and took Elijah to our neighborhood school. We walked up the sidewalk and Elijah was greeted by all the teachers and staff and directed to sit in his classroom line in the cafeteria.

He walked in like a pro; very confident and ready to start the day.  Overall, public Kindergarten has been a huge blessing and Ian and I have really been impressed with the school. We will keep you posted as the year continues.

But for now, we leave with a hip' hip hooray' for our little Kindergartener! We are so proud of you, Elijah! You continue to amaze us every day with who you choose to be and how you impact your world! May you continue to spread the Love in all you do!