Monday, May 23, 2016

Ainsley - 7!!

Our baby is 7!! Crazy!! This past 6 months can be summed up in two words - gymnastics and homeschool. :)

Ainsley decided to try her 1st grade year doing homeschool. It's actually been a better transition than I could imagine having both kids home. We are able to have lots of flexibility in going places and hands on learning. The kids have developed a great bond. Ainsley has really grown this year in her schooling - she is doing a great job with her reading. I love to listen to her. :) She is also doing well at co-op - taking math, art, animal studies, and nature studies - and enjoying her time with other kids.

Gymnastics is the other word the sums up Ainsley's year. She started gymnastics in late August, and hasn't stopped!! She is doing so well, quickly progressing and most importantly, smiling through most practices. :) Our basement has been transformed into a gym. There isn't a day that goes by that she isn't flipping, cartwheeling, or doing a back walk over. Ainsley has definitely found her "thing" and I can't wait to see where it takes her!

Ainlsey continues to be independent. She has a dry wit, and it's interesting to her what she'll say next. She continues to make the best, craziest faces in reaction to whatever is going on.

Ainsley loves her cousins so much. She has really enjoyed Abigail as she grows - I think she enjoys taking on the "big sister" role.

Ainsley's 7th birthday party was a gymnastics party. We had her friends over to do gymnastics in the basement, followed by a family party. Unfortunately, Ainsley wasn't feeling so well and fell asleep during her party. We appreciated all the family and friends coming over. We celebrated on her actual birthday at Cheesecake Factory - her new favorite.

Ainsley and Evan continue to be friends - mostly playing great together. I love the bond that the two of them are forming!

When Ainsley's not doing gymnastics, she likes to bake, hang out with her friends, be an honorary cub scout,  and go to Kings Island (48" this year!!).

Ainsley is the perfect mix of sweetness and wit. She is a joy to watch grow up. I can definitely see her growing up - I'd love to slow it down, but I know I can't. Right now, we are trying to enjoy every moment we can!

Evan - 10-1/2

Summer has arrived at the Ross household!! We are all looking forward to a great summer following a great school year!

Evan is 10-1/2 and just finished up 4th grade. We has another great year filled with lots of learning at home and out in the world. Our big change this year came around Christmas, when we switched from online school to true homeschool. I think we are all enjoying the new way. Evan is doing great as usual - he is flying through Pre-Algebra and science, and his writing is really seeing awesome improvement. I have been blessed to have Poppy help me out teaching. At co-op, he really enjoyed his classes - Sea Creatures, gym, art, and Classic Lit book club. (I enjoyed teaching Algebra I and II.)

For sports, Evan has been rocking soccer his fall and spring seasons! We love to watch him play, and he has a pretty great coach (Dad)! He decided not to play basketball, and instead is taking a boys athletic tumbling/ninja warrior class. He loves it and is learning to flip and jump all over the basement. He has a great front and back tuck on the trampoline!

He has gotten really strong - learned to mow the grass, is helpful carrying things. I think he's stronger then me. :) The COSI strength test may have proved it. 

He has also continued on with Scouts - with only 1/2 a year left until he moves to Boy Scouts. :( We love all the activities including Pinewood Derby and campouts. We have really grown to love all the boys and families in the group. 

Evan still has his two best buddies, and has added Kelly to his friends to skype and play online with. He is either very active - running around like crazy - or happy to be playing on his computer. And, if we are ever near water, Evan is instantly wet!

Evan continues to be an awesome big brother. We have loved having both kids home this year - it's been great seeing the bond with each other grow. 

Evan is continuing to grow into an awesome young man! He is a great thinker, and can be so sweet. We are blessed to have him as our son!!

Saturday, November 7, 2015

Ainsley at 6-1/2

Here are a few things Ainsley has been up to in the last 6 months:

Ainsley had her dance recital in May. She loves performing, especially with her cousin Mya!

Ainsley had a blast at the lake this year, and had fun doing anything with water. 

She lost her first two teeth!

 Had lots of fun at KI!

Went to several summer camps with friends:

In August, Ainsley started gymnastics and we think she's found her passion! We can't keep her right side up. :) 

Evan is 10!!!

I saw it every post, but 10! Evan is 10! I really, really don't know how that happened. I do know that it has come too quickly.

If you ask Evan what he loves at 10, it's pretty simple - playing with his friends and Minecraft. (The ultimate fun is playing Minecraft with his friends.) He loves running around and playing any type of game - frisbee, basketball, football, wiffleball, dodgeball -  with friends, Dad, Poppy or Grandpa.

Evan played soccer in the spring and the fall, and had another two great seasons.

This fall, Evan tried out ultimate frisbee and really enjoyed it. I think he'll be playing again in the spring. 

A few months ago, we upgraded Evan's room. He really needed a desk, and had been asking about a loft bed for a long time. We surprised him one day with a new loft bed! He loved his new space and can often be found at his desk. Here is the before and after: 

Evan finally has a boy cousin!!! Hudson was born in June. I am sure they will be buddies as they grow up. 

Evan continues to do Cub Scouts. We all love how family friendly the group is! We have fun hiking, camping out, learning new things, and even selling popcorn. Here are some pictures from the Heritage Day parade:

We had another AMAZING summer together filled with:

  • Seattle!!! We were so lucky to spend a week and a half with our great friends in Seattle. The city is gorgeous, but the memories and fun that we had were priceless!
  • Lots of summer camps
  • A fun trip to the lake where Evan learned to knee board. It was to great to see him work hard, not give up, and finally accomplish it! It helped that he caught on before Dad. :) 

  • Tons of trips to KI 
  • Enjoying the food plan at KI

  • After KI, stopping at Speedway. (Both kids prefer Icees over ice cream - crazy kids!)

 For Evan's actual birthday, he wanted a sleepover with his best friend. I think it was a great success!

We are having so much fun with Evan at this stage. It's amazing to see him starting to really figure out who he is, what he likes, and how to handle situations and emotions. It's not always easy, as we all navigate between childhood and becoming a teenager. When we see Evan making the right choice, using self control, or making a good tough decision, it's nice to know he is on the right path. We know it's part of him growing up.

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Evan - 9-1/2

Happy Spring!! It's been awhile since our last update and Evan is now 9-1/2.

We have had so much fun these last 8 months! Here are some of the highlights:

School - Evan is doing homeschool again this year. We both enjoy the time we get to spend together and the flexibility that homeschooling provides. (**Bragging here - Evan is 2 full grade levels ahead in math and he it doing so great.) He is also excelling in reading and science. I love to see him learn, even if a few days are difficult.  We are still attending Learning Tree, and this year Evan is taking Lego, Art, Gym, and Little House. (I'm teaching Pre-Algebra, Algebra I, and Algebra II and really love it.)

Sports - Evan is still playing SAY soccer and enjoys that pace. He played in the fall and now in the spring and Doug assistant coached both his teams. He also played Upward basketball in the winter and also did archery for awhile in the fall.

Scouts - Evan is also still participating in Cub Scouts. We all had a great time at the fall campout in John Bryan State park. He did really well in at the Pinewood Derby in winter - placing 3rd place out of all the scouts. He even went to collect maple syrup this year. He has some great friends and it's been a wonderful group to be part of.

Friends - His two best buddies are still Tyler and Zachary. We are so lucky to have these great boys in his life. They all play so well together. Zachary lives right down the street, and as and added bonus Ainsley and Zachary's little sister are great friends as well. Tyler moved to Seattle in the fall, but the boys have kept the friendship going with weekly Skype dates and a fun Christmas visit.

Interests - This year, Evan joined a First Lego League team and is having fun learning and working with the group. His favorite item by far is his iPad - preferring that to even a movie or TV show. He also loved to connect online and play Minecraft with his friends. Thankfully, when he is unplugged, he still just likes to play - he loves riding bikes, shooting hoops, running around outside and making up games with his sister.

Fun Activities - We have done so many fun things this year. For his birthday, Evan had an archery tag birthday party, where the boys and their dads faced off!. We also attended 3 plays at the Cincinnati Children's Theater. Through our homeschooling group, Evan got to visit the Post Office Tour and National Underground Freedom center. We've spend several Friday afternoons rollerskating. In the winter, we were able to go snow tubing as will as skiing for the first time!

We are really enjoying watching Evan grow and the young man his is becoming. He has a wonderful heart and is an amazing brother to Ainsley. We love you Evan!!