Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Goodbye Houston

On August 6th we pulled out of our driveway in Houston for the last time. We'd spent the previous two days watching the movers pack and load all of our stuff into their huge truck. There were WAY too many boxes!

The night before we left, we camped out in the living room of our empty house. It was a fun way to spend our last night together there.

The week before we left, we did our best to spend as much time with our friends and family as possible before we left. We had an after-work gathering on Thursday evening for kids and adults. I wish I'd brought my camera and taken some pics, but one of our friends did get some pics of Jackson and Audrey with one of their friends. You can also see all of the signatures Audrey got on her pillow...makes her feel so loved!

Our final gathering was at the park after church on Sunday. We hung out by the splash pad at Clear Lake Park for several hours while friends came and went. We LOVED spending a little more time with some of our favorite people!

There was lots of fun had by everyone!

Some of our favorite sibling pairs were able to make it. These kids (and their families) have been friends since they were babies!

There are more pics from the park in the album!

We spent over ten years in Houston. We accumulated a lot of "stuff" while we were there, but it wasn't all stuff that could fit in a box. We bought our first house there, both of our kids were born there, we began our careers there, and we built so many wonderful relationships there. We will treasure every moment...the good and bad because they made us who we are today. We look forward to the next stage of our journey and hope to continue growing the relationships we already have, as well as the new ones to come. We already miss everyone!

Monday, August 25, 2014

Goodbye JSC Daycare

The JSC Daycare has been part of our lives since just before Jackson turned 1. Many of the teachers have become part of our family and have been truly instrumental in helping Jackson and Audrey become the amazing kids they are today. They have been there to teach them how to walk, drink from a cup, potty train, learn all kinds of info from letters and numbers to science and math and computers, and most importantly, how to interact with other kids and adults. They have loved on them through thick and thin. They were there to help with a broken leg and broken hearts. We are forever grateful to have them in all of our lives!

The other families at the daycare have also been a huge part of our lives. They have walked along side us in this journey of parenting. They have provided guidance and support along the way. We have found some amazing friends here!

Audrey's last day was filled with fun. Her teacher, Ms. Monica, let Audrey decide how she wanted to celebrate her last day with her friends. She, of course, requested donuts, but not just any donuts. She requested very specific donuts. All of her friends were excited to share them with her. After the donuts, they each shared what they will miss about her, and then they each took turns giving her a hug and taking a picture with her. It was really sweet! Most of the pictures are in the album, but here are a few of them.

In the afternoon, there was a school carnival where Audrey and Jackson both got their faces painted and spent a little more time with their friends. It was a great way to say goodbye.

Thursday, August 21, 2014

See You Later Bushi Ban

Before leaving Houston, we did our best to spend a little extra time celebrating all of our friendships. Jackson brought donuts to Bushi Ban (where he takes karate) on his last day. He had a lot of fun hanging out with everyone that day, and Bushi Ban did an incredible job of making it a special day for all of us!

When we arrived, Jackson was greeted with a huge card made by one of his best friends, Sophia. She had everyone at Bushi Ban write a note to him in it, which he absolutely loves! It's hanging in his room in CA, and he looks at it often!

We also got special pillows for Jackson and Audrey to have all of their friends sign. The pillows went with us just about everywhere we went the last week in Houston, and Bushi Ban was no exception!

During the day Jackson and his friends from Bushi Ban went to Mr. Gatti's to eat, play, and celebrate. One of his instructors and friends joined them despite being off work at the time!

When I picked Jackson up in the afternoon, they had everything ready for a special photo shoot, which you know I loved and appreciated! A few of Jackson's instructors weren't able to be there, but they will never be forgotten! Master Kazi, Master Jamie (pictured below), Master Chaw, Ms. Cheryl, and Ms. Liz have been absolutely incredible for Jackson and our family this year! If I haven't said it before, I whole-heartedly believe Bushi Ban was the best place for Jackson to spend his time after school last year and throughout this summer!

I'm pretty sure Jackson got a picture with everyone at Bushi Ban that day. They are each so special to him. Here are a few of the pics, but there are a LOT more in the album.

Also, did you notice the new belt color in the pics? Jackson got another double promotion to a purple striped belt! Since he wasn't going to be in town for the upcoming graduation, they gave it to him early!

Master Kazi reminded Jackson that this is not "goodbye," but "see you later" since he truly hopes our paths will cross again some day. We certainly hope so!

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Circus Field Trip

Audrey's last field trip in Houston was to the circus. My dad (AKA Pop) was in town and got to join us for the fun.

The circus was impressive, but I think Audrey enjoyed the pre-show most. In addition to getting a full bag of cotton candy to herself, she also got to dance with one of the circus performers!

After the show we joined the class for pizza. The whole experience was great, but it was a little bittersweet. There aren't a lot of preschools that take kiddos on field trips, and knowing it was the last with our JSC family was sad. We enjoyed every moment though! There are a few more pics from "The Greatest Show on Earth" in the album.