Archive for the ‘Family’ Category

The weather was cold, dreary, and damp, but the love of family coming together to mark this special occasion in Ben’s childhood was perfect. Owen was an Altar Server for the mass, PeePaw Thomas did the reading, and the rest of the family was there to support Ben for all the hard work and preparation he did leading up to this day. Ben thought it was neat he was able to wear the same exact suit, shirt, tie, and shoes that Owen also wore for his First Communion.

When Owen had his First Communion, I let him pick he colors of the decorations for his party – Blue and Green. I thought Ben would so something similar. Nope… he gave me a challenge – Red and Orange. But I pulled it off, he picked out his cake all by himself too. It was a really really nice day for our boy. So happy and proud for him.

Disney World Day 6

November 23, 2016

Day 6 was our last full day at Disney and the day one of the events Jillian was most looking forward to… Breakfast at Cinderella’s Castle. It did not disappoint. This is the best character meal by far because the food is excellent and it’s not a buffet. Jillian LOVED meeting the princesses and was over the moon ecstatic to meet her favorite princess in pink, Aurora (Sleep Beauty). We also got to meet Merida before leaving Magic Kingdom. Mommy and Jilly were both big fans. Merida and Jilly talked about how their brothers pestered them. Ha!

We finished our last day back at Hollywood Studios. Owen got to make a light saber and the kids got fun light up drinks at the 50’s Prime Time. Great restaurant.

Oh – and as you can see in the one picture, Jilly is crying. She was sad it was her last full day at Disney. She said she wanted to stay for 100 days. Bless her heart!

Disney World Day 5

November 22, 2016

Day 5 was a hot one in Florida. We spent the day at Magic Kingdom, took a break and went swimming in the pool at our resort, then went back at night. This was quite an experience because we were able to see Magic Kingdom turn from Halloween to CHRISTMAS!  I’m not a huge Christmas person, but there is just something about being there at that time of the year that totally gets you in the spirit.  And this is going to sound silly, but when we went back at night, we were able to see them light up Cinderella’s castle for Christmas and it was breathtaking. Like, it gave me goosebumps and and my jaw dropped. Nothing much “wows” me in my adult like, but that certainly did.

Oh – and we had a small brush with a famous football star.  I was having Mike take a picture of Jilly and I in about the same place as our last visit when she was a baby. We noticed there was some production event going on behind me and it was Charles Woodson with Mickey and Goofy filming a segment of some sort.  Pretty neat!

 

Disney World Day 4

November 21, 2016

Day for at Disney was a full day at Epcot. We must have had too much fun riding rides, meeting characters, exploring the World Showcase, and eating yummy food at the Wine and Food Fest because I hardly took any pictures. Wine and Food Fest is amazing. I want to go back and do it again some day!

Disney World Day 3

November 20, 2016

Day 3 at Disney was a full day at Hollywood Studios followed by a nightcap at Epcot. Our first Fast Pass that morning was Star Tours. Jilly was very apprehensive, but her brothers, Dad, and I assured her she would love it. Once the ride started her face lite up like the sun. She was hooked. I think we rode it 7 more times that day. We got to see all kinds of Star Wars stuff and meet Chewy and Kilo Ren. Jillian was very excited to meet all the Disney Jr characters and all the kids (and PeePaw) thought Pluto was pretty cool.

It’s no secret that one of Jilly’s top favorite Disney movies is Frozen. The Frozen Sing along was great and very very funny. Elsa even sprinkled us with snow, in Florida! Jilly and I also got to meet Olaf. What a pal.

Owen participated in a side show with the green army men. They liked his red hair and called him “Copper Top”. He was a very good cadate and showed he does indeed know how to follow directions so he has no more excuse not to listen at home! Ha!

The kids enjoyed our Halloween themed dinner at Hollywood and Vine and really soaked up getting to meet Minnie and her pals in their Halloween costumes. The dinner even came with special seating for Fantasmic!

The best part of the evening was riding the newer version of Soarin’. IT.WAS.WONDERFUL! I was totally amazed. It’s beautiful, fun, and relaxing. And the aromatics during the ride are the best. I kept saying they should turn them into candles. I wish I could ride it weekly!

Disney World Day 2

November 19, 2016

Day two, which was Halloween, started out at Animal Kingdom and ended past midnight at Magic Kingdom at Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween Party. I mean, what better way to spend Halloween night than at the happiest place on earth at the funnest Halloween party ever dressed as a family of super heroes! The party was so great. Very very crowded at first, and a little dicey, but after the fireworks it started to clear out and it felt like we had the park to ourselves. We walked right on rides, got TONS of candy, and had a special character meet with Belle at Gaston’s Tavern. It was the very end of the night and we saw the line was short to get pictures so we hopped in line. We were told we were the last for the night. Whoo… well Jilly was afraid to go up to Belle b/c Gaston was there too and he’s a villain. Jilly doesn’t like villains. Well, Belle walked over to her, knelt down to her sitting in the stroller, and coaxed Jilly over. She took her hand and it was so sweet. Belle took her time and they had a nice, special moment. Definitely a memory I won’t forget.

My baby girl graduated from preschool on Thursday. I can’t believe it. I was pregnant with her at Owen’s graduation and that seemed like yesterday. My head and my heart are having a hard time dealing with the fact she’s almost done with her time at PHEAA. The years have gone sooooooo fast. She’s such a special little girl and her teachers love her. She’s so well behaved and she’s such a joy to have in class. They tell me all the time at pick up. I did shed some tears during the ceremony. But, I put the big smile on my face because my girl was so excited for her graduation and on Thursday, the night was about celebrating her. A bittersweet time for this mommy, but a “super happy” (in Jillian speak) time for her. Gosh I love this little girl.


All dressed and ready to go!

She was so excited, but a little nervous…normal for our shy girl.

Her graduation head shot. LOVE. So so pretty.

The Class of 2016

Her favorite thing in class “…doing art.”

When she grows up, she want to be “…my Dad. He cooks and drives.”

The graduation had a Lego theme because it’s a popular toy in class. Jilly’s pink Lego and picture of her with her Lego creation.

The stage is set.

Here they come.

She was showing her nerves and shy facial expression.

Then she saw mom and dad and smiled.

This is her saying “Hi, Mom.”

She was happy to see us.

Big sigh of relief.

Singing songs.

Taking their seats.

Getting her Friendship Award.

They asked the kids in class what makes a good friend and said their response during the friendship awards. Most kids had abstract answers like “I play Legos with my friends.” Jillian’s answer was perfect and so her. She said “Being kind to others makes me a good friend.” Ahhhhh. And her teacher commented on how kind she really was.

Proud of her medal.

Getting her diploma.

Proudly showing off her certificate.

Don’t know what this look is for, but it’s hysterical.

Yellow carnations for a special surprise.

What will it be?

The kids sang “You are my Sunshine” then gave all their moms the flowers.

Jilly gave me the biggest hug when she gave me my flower. It was perfect, and made me cry.

All the graduates.

Our graduate and her family.

Mom and Dad are so proud of our girl.

Mimi and Pop Pop.

Grammy and PeePaw Thomas

Grammy and PeePaw Park.

Proud Big Brothers

This pic was Jilly’s request. She wanted a pic with her flowers (gift from Dad and Brothers) and Bear (gift from the daycare with a TRU gift card).

She’s official.

A little party for her at home.

She picked out this cake.

Kindergarten Here I Come.

Opening a few gifts. Her brothers helped read the cards.

Easter 2016

April 1, 2016

Sunday, March 27th was a double duty holiday for us this year. It was Easter and Mike’s birthday. The kids got goodies from the Easter Bunny and a few special things from Mom and Dad. Mike bought/downloaded a fighter pack to the Wii U for Super Smash Bros. We told the boys they had one more gift to find. They looked for something hidden and gave up. When they finally decided to play the game, they noticed the upgrade and were VERY happy boys. Jillian was thrilled to finally get a PINK booster seat for the van.

My Dad and Deb came over for dinner, then my mom, Steve, and my sister and her family came over for an egg hunt. The kids love this. Each kid has their own color so we can make it harder for the big kids and not so tough for the littles. Owen got the golden egg and was over the moon happy.

We got to sing Happy Birthday to Mike and we had to light the candles several times for Sal & Jillian. They wanted to take turns blowing them out. Finally the big guy got his turn.

All in all it was a nice day. Wish we had more of an Easter Break, but any holiday with all 6 of my favorite kids is a good one.


January Recap

February 3, 2016

Here is what we were up to in January….

Basketball was in full swing for both boys. Saturday mornings were game day for Benny.

Jilly did not find basketball exciting.

Sunday’s were game day for Owen and the 4th grade travel team.

Cheering on the EP Panthers in our Spirit Wear at the Dickinson College Tournament.

Family dinner at my favorite local Greek place.

The girls cuddling in Jilly’s bed.

We finally got her closet system in and everything organized. Now for the rest of the house.

Benny started teaching Jilly how to play video games. Bless his heart. He’d even lose on purpose to let her win.

Benny brought home a writing assignment from Christmas time about why he would make a good elf for Santa. His response in a nut shell… he wouldn’t. He wouldn’t want to leave home and his family. Sweet family loving boy.

We went to NJ to a retirement party for my Father-In-Law

We took out try at the 800+ million Powerball. We were the big winners of $4.

After well over a decade, I had to have my bridge replaced (post accident tooth repairs). Still amazes me when I see all the metal and what not in my face. Missing from this shot is the metal plate in my chin.

Jilly won the drawing for the Cavity Free Kid of the Month Prize from the dentist.

I had a nice holiday afternoon with some of my college girlfriends.

We relaxed and watched Steeler Football.

After work snuggles with my girl.

Skyzone Birthday Party for Owen’t best buddy on the basketball team, Joe.

How many 4th grade basketball players can you fit in the Hurricane Simulator?

Owen was thrilled the cat cuddled with him.

Benny got cuddle time in with Maxie too.

We celebrated our furry girl’s 12th birthday.

We celebrated Benny’s birthday a day early. He spent the weekend at Mimi’s and when he came home, he got his surprise of a new bed and room decorations. Good bye Star Wars, Hello Mario.

December Wrap Up

January 2, 2016

December was a month full of getting ready for Christmas and the start of basketball for both boys. We also celebrated my brother Dan’s 30th Birthday and of course the annual Park Family Christmas.


Benny had 4 baskets in his first game. He did great!

Dan’s 30th and the Park Family Christmas

Hard to believe they were playing baseball in the backyard w/o coats in December.

Family Feud.

This fun game you play with your phone. You can’t see the word, but those around you have to try to get you to guess it w/o saying it. The kids were good!

Owen’s first basketball game for the 4th Grade Travel Team.

NYE @ Phil & Lora’s