Tell me what it is you want to do with your one wild and precious life? -mary oliver

Friday, July 23, 2010

Swimming Celebrations

Swimming lessons are now a thing of the past for this year.  The kids finished last night, but it was questionable as Powell had torrential downpours an hour before and a 20 minute thunder delay before the lessons.  The weather held out and we finished with a bang!

Addyson is now advanced.  She mastered most of the strokes, but her favorite of all is the backstroke.  She is such a FISH!!  She fell in love jumping off the diving board, trying new tricks.  As with everything new she learns, she does it over and over.  She'd jump off the board, climb out, and get in line to jump again.  This continued before and after lessons until it was time to go home.  Austin wasn't comfortable with it yet, so he watched her.  She's working on the diving part, but the skill is something for her to challenge herself.  I am so proud of her!!

Austin knew if he wanted to keep up with Addy and have a friend at the pool to swim with, he must conquer his fear.  (We've yet to see any of his school friends at the pool, so he swims with Addy and her friends.  They love him!)  On the last night, he bit the bullet and began jumping off the board without his teacher, before and after lessons.  Now, he's like Addy:  jump off the board, climb out, and get in line to jump again, over and over.  Yeah, Austin!  He will be in beginner again next year, but he's improved so much.  He will need to work on floating on his back, other strokes, and diving, but I am proud of him as well.

Both of my children love the pool, one more than the other, but they look forward to going.  The mother of Addy's friend asked me at lessons if we are at the pool a lot when I realized we are.  It's our summer "thing"  and because of going multiple times a week, our children are comfortable in the water, and practice (playing) what they have learned.  We can't expect them to become proficient at something if they aren't given the opportunity to practice on their own.  And so we go!  They are growing up so fast!

Friday, July 16, 2010

Busy, But Blessed!

By far, this has been our busiest week of the summer.  VBS in the mornings, and swim lessons in the evenings, along with another get-together mid-week.  Tired,but worth it.  I always teach with my good friend, Debbie.  In all the years we've taught together, this was the smoothest group we've had.  Our leaders decided to give us a break this year by assigning us mild-mannered kids !!!

It's been a week of celebrations, especially since the theme of VBS was
Jeremiah 29:11:  God has many plans for you!  Isn't that the truth!

1.  Austin was moved up to beginner in swim lessons because he has made so much improvement since last year and he is swimming pretty good.

2.  Addy is jumping of the diving board on her own, without a lifeguard catching her!  Her next challenge is the HIGH DIVE! Oh my!

3.  Austin jumped off the diving board twice(with help), but still isn't sure of it.   At least he's trying!

4.  Monday, as parents were picking up the children from VBS, a young man walked by and said "Hi."   I heard him ask his sister if that was Mrs. Archer?   He was in my very first class in Dublin 10 years ago.  It wasn't my best year, he and his brother were challenges, yet he was sharing his celebrations with me.  He is going to college, running track, and made Nationals this year.  His brother is playing football for another college.  Amazing the impact we have on individuals, even when we are not sure we are doing a great job!  What a moment for me!

5.  My friend, Debbie has been praying for a teaching job in her old district.  She took many years off to be with her children, but has been trying to get back in this year.  It's not a good atmosphere for teachers who have taught.  Administrations want brand-new teachers, instead of experienced ones.  Anyway, her old principal called her on Monday to inform her that she would only get 5 years, if she were hired.  She was disappointed, yet hopeful for a job.  Tuesday afternoon, her principal called her to tell her she had a position for her.  How thrilling!  She was so excited on Wednesday to tell me.  Guess what our Bible Story verse for the day was:  Jeremiah 29:11:  My God has many plans for you!  She and I were both joyful that day as we sang the songs about God's plans.

6.  I've enjoyed watching Addyson and Austin do the motions to all the songs in VBS.  It's something to watch your own children learn.

7.  I learned how to make a photo montage on the website, and then embed it into my blog.

8.  I learned how to embed youtube videos into blogs.  I've been wanting to learn that for a long time.

What a week!  I'm looking forward to sleeping in tomorrow, and spending the afternoon at the pool.

Monday, July 12, 2010

Austin's Corner

My first swimming lesson was tonight and...I am moving up to Beginner.  Before I was a tadpole, but I heard my teacher tell her assistant that I need to move up because I'm floating and swimming.  Yeah, Me!  Tomorrow night, I get to be in the same class as Addy.  I can't wait!
 P.S.  On the way home, Austin said,"Mama, we need to put this on the blog.  Can I move the picture around?"  He's a techie all right! Celebrations are all abound in the Archer household.

Saturday, July 10, 2010

Beach Vacation 2010

What a amazing time to cherish one another. P.S. I am AMAZED at myself for learning how to do this. The only thing Andy did was get all the pictures in one folder. Yeah, Me!!! Keep Smiling

Friday, July 9, 2010


After months of wiggling this tooth, Addyson's front tooth came out.  Tuesday evening, it began bleeding profusely and she was wigging out, crying and screaming.  She's never seen so much blood before, but wouldn't let Andy or I pull on it.  The past two days, it was hanging on by a thread.

We went to the pool this evening and ran through Wendy's for sandwiches.  She was playing with it, when Austin grabbed her arm to get her attention.  The tooth flew across the seat and she had trouble finding it.  Now, they are both singing, "All I want for Christmas is my two front teeth..."  Much relief in the Archer household!!   She has an astute theory that the Tooth Fairy takes the teeth that fall out and puts them in little babies when they grow new teeth.  Sort of recycling teeth for the good...I guess that's one way to make a difference:)

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Swimming: Then and Now

Last year, the kids began swimming lessons through the Olentangy Swim Association.  They are not involved in too many activities, but Andy and I want our children to become better swimmers than we are.  They have more opportunities to swim than we did as children, and swimming is a life skill.  As you can see from the clips, Austin wasn't much for swimming.  He preferred to swim in the baby pool, without getting his face wet.  Addyson began teaching  herself to swim underwater.  That girl would swim laps in the medium pool, back and forth, challenging herself farther and farther.  She even was brave enough to jump off the diving board. Once school began, swimming took a back burner, except for when we stayed in hotels.
Here we are in 2010, and what a difference!! Austin is jumping in and out of the pool, practicing swimming, and wearing his goggles.   It may be not the most graceful stroke, but he's trying.  Addy is now swimming laps above the water.  She has a decent butterfly stroke going, and is now swimming in the deep end. (A vacation celebration!!!)   We begin swimming lessons next week and can't wait to see their accomplishments.

It's not necessarily the amount of time you spend at practice that counts; it's what you put into the practice.

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Myrtle Beach/Oak Island: Archer Vacation 2010

Our first day was HOT (as would be the next 3 days)!! The heat index was pushing 100 and on reached triple digits.  I always love aquariums!  There's just something about seeing all the water creatures that God has created, each one unique.  We ventured to Ripley's Aquarium our first day.  It had a movable walkway(similar to those in airports) where the tanks were on all three sides.  There were sharks, stingrays, eels, and more.  Addyson and Austin liked it, but were more inclined to go towards the play area.  That afternoon we headed to our next hotel, where we would spend 2 1/2 days before heading to Oak Island.

Sunsets on the pier

Saturday, we headed  Oak Island.  When we share with our friends and family where we stayed, they always remark, "Never heard of it."  Andy's response is always, " That's why we go there!!"
I had some struggles adapting to little technology.  We did not have internet and my blackberry worked very little, so tv was our only information tool.  I needed to chat with my online class, so Andy scouted out the local coffee shop that had free wi-fi!

Our daily routine was:  get up, eat breakfast, go to the beach, come home, shower, eat lunch, take a nap, head to the pool around 3, come home, shower, fix dinner or go out, and so on.  We went into Southport, hoping to visit the huge NC Fourth of July festival, but it didn't begin until late Friday evening.  We opted for ice cream cones, which neither child has perfected the art of eating before they melt.  Afterwards, Austin's yellow shirt was stained with chocolate!! He told us he doesn't even like the cone!!
On a bridge in Southport

Austin loves digging in sand.  It must be a favorite past time of all kids.

In the airport, waiting to go through security.  Home Sweet Home!

July 1st, Oak Island does it's annual fireworks, so we were standing on the boardwalk waiting.  A family of four walked past us, wearing the glow-in-the dark necklaces that are so popular at festivals.  Austin said, "Look Mama, they're tie-dye necklaces."  A few minutes later, one of their boys walked back up on the boardwalk and gave Addy and Austin a necklace.  Andy and I immediately spoke on how this family "filled Addy and Austin's buckets" and did a random act of kindness.  We want our children to recognize when good things happen and people do good when not asked.  It was a great time, minus the bug bites and a good firework show.

“Kindness is more than deeds. It is an attitude, an expression, a look, a touch. It is anything that lifts another person.”