What Were the Dog Days of Summer
The Lingering Remembrances of October

Welcome, Fall

It's now a race for me to post pictures from September before I forget when and where they were taken. 

Just bear with me as I make this confession that will need to cover my blog posts from here on out until otherwise noted: my time to creatively write blog posts other than the general month's synopsis of pictures is nil. Nil. And I'm mostly ok with that. But just know I have no other creative way of starting these monthly picture posts other than by simply naming the respective month. Too many other things on my plate at the moment.

September. Ah, September. I was so excited about that month. It meant the end of the summer and the start of a fresh routine. It meant the beginning of the football season, of pumpkin everything, and of the hope of cooler weather. 

Here's my girl on the first Sunday of September after church. Brennan wasn't feeling well so Matt stayed home with him. We girls enjoyed a spontaneous get together with our special friend, Melissa, after the service. Kensie is aflutter with excitement when she is a part of girl time.

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It might not truly feel like fall around these parts until November, but the decor gives us visible reminders that indeed, it is such the season. My momma kindly gave us the sweet scarecrow girl and she also made the gorgeous wreath that brightens our doorstep. I only inherited 10% of that woman's crafty genes. She amazes me with what she pulls together!

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The night before school started our home was bustling in anticipation! Brennan started his last pre-k year at the precious school he's attended the last two years. He goes every Tuesday and Thursday mornings, eager to learn and work on fun projects. Kensie is still with me, but the teachers and administration at Brennan's school feel strongly that she belongs in school because they want her so badly. For her birthday, Brennan gave her the backpack and lunch box so she could be like her "Bubba". 


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Tuesday, September 3rd: the first day of school!

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I love her so much! After we dropped off Brennan one morning at school, she led me all around the church grounds with that smile. 

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From September-November, I'm spending one day a month auditing a class about Tim Keller's book, "Center Church". It has been an incredibly long time since I've been in the classroom setting, and it shows. Having notes like this in my lunch from my sweet husband helps get me through the day. And we are blessed beyond measure to have a Mees and Popsie who come on those days to lovingly spoil the kiddos!

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We had a spontaneous lunch date at our usual, Chick fil A, after story time at the library one Friday. Brennan was particularly excited about a book entitled, "Who Would Win: a Lion or a Tiger?" he checked out. I will confess I even participated in some wrestling with the boy as the lion and was defeated. I will also confess that I was more sore than I should have been the next day.

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GIG 'EM! It's Aggie football season and we are ready! Mac, Julie, Wynn and Maysie were all decked out in their season's best and so were we, so I merged our two pictures. We're not Aggie alum, but that school has our hearts because Uncle Mac has our hearts. Speaking of my niece and nephew, remember last month when I shared their Chick fil A 'Cow Appreciation Day' picture? Well, they WON the contest! They actually won in the calves category! Out of thousands of pictures, they were chosen! They won gift cards to CFA and a trip to Atlanta to tour the CFA headquarters. They got back a couple of weeks ago and CFA made it quite the celebration for them. I'm still amazed (and a very proud aunt) that they won! 

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Our scrunchy-nosed smiler dressed in her fall jammies.

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For the month of September, Matt and I served in the children's ministry at church with the 2-5 year olds. We're going through the Gospel Project for kids, and it's fabulous! We love being with these precious kiddos. We also had some crazy mornings trying to get there to do this! On our last Sunday of September, 20 minutes before we were supposed to leave, I realized I'd completely forgotten to bake the communion bread for that morning. Talk about heart-pounding, sweaty-palmed nerves! Thankfully, it didn't take that long to make and they didn't need any for the early service, so we could bring it a bit late. And then we spent 25 minutes at church trying to get the video started and it wouldn't work. And then the computer wouldn't work as a backup either. Craziness! But man, we will not stop praying for each of these kiddos to hear how much Jesus loves them, how He's rescued them, and what great plans He has for them!

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My family seeing me off as I left for a meeting. I am so thankful for these three. In my comings and goings, there is no place like home, like the family that welcomes and loves me, and that the Lord has allowed to be an extension of His refuge to me.

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My handsome, dear boy who soaks up his snuggles. One of my favorite times of the day is when he comes down from his room in the morning, and he lets me hold and rock him, whispering sweet truths to him.

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His favorite animal at the moment: cheetahs. If you see a boy on all fours racing across our lawn, you'll know what he's supposed to be. We've checked out lots of cheetah books from the library.

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I know I'm biased. I know that full well. But I think she's pretty cute...

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in any form or fashion!

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My Kensie Jane loves to help in the kitchen. And she's particularly fond of taste-testing.

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She is a nurturer through and through. Younger kids, animals, her own baby doll...they are lovingly cared for. One of her favorite things to do in the morning is help feed Molly.

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Slowly but surely, Kensie is saying more words. We're not worried about her delay in speech, but we are monitoring it. One of her favorite questions to answer is, "Who loves you?" And since starting our parent-tot gymnastics class on Tuesday mornings while Brennan is at school, she has practiced and practiced and practiced jumping. After several weeks, she's finally gotten air! And she feels most accomplished.

Who loves you, Kensie Jane? from Meg @ Spicy Magnolia on Vimeo.


A special breakfast outing before school.

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He's so silly. In case you're wondering why there might be more pictures of Kensie Jane than Brennan, it's because he's moving too much to sit still for a photo and isn't the least bit interested in letting me capture a moment. 

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"Where is the pinata, Momma?" as we walked into Brennan's school noticing the gigantic pinatas they got to swing at for Fiesta Day.

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The amazing swim instructor the kids have had lessons with in the summer suggested we check out a swim team she helps coach that Brennan might like to join. So in August, with some trepidation of adding something to our schedule and not sure how Brennan would take to the environment, we tried it out. It's really hard as a mom to know how much to encourage and push trying something out when your child is in tears. It's agonizing. Keeping in mind that the boy is only four years old, we said we'd give it the month of September.

Two months into this now, you should see this boy swim, y'all. It is beautiful to see him in the water. It's hard work (an hour of straight swimming two times a week), and that's the part that 'scares' him the most, he says. "My body likes swimming, but my tummy doesn't." He still gets butterflies in his tummy, and we're holding this all loosely. But for now, it allows us to expend some of that boy's energy, he's learning that it's a good thing to stick to something that's hard sometimes, and also has the joy of feeling very accomplished at the end of the sessions. There are several things that astound me as I watch him: his determination; how observant he is of those around him to help him learn and pick things up about the swim culture that haven't necessarily been verbally explained; how even though he gets nervous at first, he gives it his all, his very best for the whole hour. I'm really proud of him. 

Freestyle and butterfly are his two strongest strokes, and he does the dolphin kick really well, too. Here's a clip of him doing freestyle two weeks into the team.

My Free Boy from Meg @ Spicy Magnolia on Vimeo.

And this is why she will be a cheerleader for Halloween this year. "Go, Bubba, go!"

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At dinner one Friday night, excited for the weekend.

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Our church vestry has the wonderful privilege of having fun social events from time to time. In September, we met at Zilker Park for a picnic, a great game of "two truths and a lie", and kite flying. We needed some help with the kite flying, but it gave us a good laugh.

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 Our team. A group of people with whom I love serving. 


  Tasty boy he was after his bath! I got to snag some pictures with him; it helped that I was willing to be goofy.

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This is what we look like on Sunday evenings: a dinner picnic by the TV watching some football. Go BRONCOS!

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This post made my Saturday morning. Love, love, love.

Beautiful! I love all of you very much.

you are inspiring me to do catch up's by the month. I love Kensie's pic in the purple dress. truly so many good pics. I can't believe I didn't know about this class. I am so out of the loop. And can't believe we were featured. hahaha Famous!

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