My birthday girl

I know I’ve missed some other birthdays and events because I haven’t blogged in a while, but I couldn’t miss Feb 2nd because it’s my puppy’s birthday – and there’s a special bond between a boy and his dog, right? GiGi turns 1 today and OMG has she grown the past year. She’s grown into a 58 lb lap dog, but she’s still all puppy – always wanting to play. I think she’s a bit stubborn too, but my parents say she is nothing compared to how stubborn I am – we’ve agreed to disagree on that one. The one thing that is clear – she’s my dog because she is always wanting to be right near me even if it means being a beanbag hog.

 

#thankful

My school had our Thanksgiving feast the other day and boy do I have a lot to be thankful for…..I have a cool dog, I have rooms full of toys, I eat lots of candy, I run the show at my house….it’s good to be king. And I know school cafeterias have a bad reputation for food quality, but my school makes the best pumpkin pudding EVER!!! I look forward to this feast every year just for that alone. My folks weren’t wild about trying it so I ate theirs – yummo! I thought my folks skipped the pudding because they wanted to save room for the turkey, potatoes, dressing, green beans, and rolls, but they didn’t really eat much of that either so not sure what they know that they’re not telling me. I was fine in my ignorance-is-bliss-world eating the turkey, potatoes, and rolls.

After all the pudding was gone, I hung out with some friends before heading back to class. I think I ate too much tryptophan in the turkey because I could’ve used a nap….or more pudding.

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Opa!

I’ve been meaning to get better about posting, but my schedule has been full and keeping me busy — 3rd grade is for real!

Anyway, some highlights from the last few weeks…I passed my Green Belt test in Taekwondo so I’m one step closer to being a lethal weapon.The test was harder because there was a lot more material to know, but Confucius says “the man who chases two rabbits catches none.” In other words, focus is key so that is what I did. I centered myself and calmed my nerves and performed like a high-kicking, board-breaking rock star!

Step behind side kick

Step behind side kick

Over the past couple of weeks I also got in touch with another side of my roots by going to the Greek Food Festival with daddy and grannie. This is the side my last name comes from, but we know very little about so we figured we could get caught up at a festival — yeah, not so much. But we did have some fun playing with sand. Opa!

And then here’s a couple of pics from when grannie came to have lunch with me for grandparent’s day and then GiGi and I tying to get some rest. The pic with grannie was sneaky on my part because she told me she wanted to take a selfie in my cafeteria and didn’t want me in it, but I photobombed with a big smile and showed her….hmmmm….I may have been played, nah! I’m sure she really came to have lunch with me hoping to get a selfie without me in the picture.

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This is my Kung Fu and it is strong

So I’ve been taking Taekwondo for the past 6 months and earned my orange belt in July. This means I’m no longer considered a beginner belt, but rather an intermediate belt which means we do more push-ups and sit-ups…oh, and that I got skills. Here’s a video from my belt test.

Real life Minecraft

This past weekend, I got the chance to experience something totally new and totally cool. I got to basically be in my own personal Minecraft game because I went digging for diamonds! Grannie and I packed our gear and headed out on a road trip to the Crater of Diamonds State Park in Murfreesboro, AR to get us some bling. My plan was to get enough diamonds to make mommy some new earrings, a necklace, and maybe a bracelet. Of course, that was after I cashed out a few diamonds to buy Toys-R-Us and, yes dad, pay for my college.

Well, Toys-R-Us is safe, mommy will have to make due with CZ’s, and don’t cash out the savings account just yet dad because we came up completely diamond free. We did, however, have a great time. It was HOT!! Grannie made me drink so much water I thought I was going to pop, but that was the right thing to do, I know. There was a water park right next to the dig site so we dug until we couldn’t dig anymore and then cooled off by playing in the water.

After leaving the diamond park, we went to another place in Arkansas where we could dig for crystals. This may have actually been cooler than the diamond place because we actually found stuff we were looking for. We found so many I could barely lift the bucket we carried them in so Grannie had to carry it the whole way – she sure is strong for a “mature” lady. We found quartz, smoke quartz, jasper, and lots of red dirt that we have all over the house now. In fact, we found so much quarts we could make mommy earrings and a necklace! I hope she likes the quartz jewelry and doesn’t take it for GRANITE — bazinga — see what I did there — Geology humor

Even though we didn’t find diamonds, we found a lot of riches in the new experiences and quality time with my Grannie. I will remember it for the rest of my life and hope she does too!

School’s Out

“School is out and it’s a sort of a buzz
And back then I didn’t really know what it was
But now I see what have of this
The way that people respond to summer madness…..
….Summer, summer, summertime
Time to sit back and unwind”

The Fresh Prince and Jazzy Jeff said it best – school is out and summertime begins! Second grade is a thing of the past (queue Boyz II Men) and now, I’m a 3rd grader, baby!.

We ended the year with bounce houses, free play, technology day, games, etc. I just assume this is how it has always been, but evidently there was a time when the last day of school was spent cleaning out your locker and returning your books, and nothing much more — man, the 80’s don’t sound like much fun.

Over the past year, I continued to grow  and push myself to do new things that were difficult for me to do in the past — I increased the number of friends I speak to, spoke in class, competed in the spelling bee, and was even silly in class from time to time enough to where every kid in my class knows I love pigs. Part of the reason I was able to grow was because of my wonderful teacher. Mrs. Blazek allowed me to explore myself more and made sure I had opportunities to grow in my own way. Oh, and she also helped me with my writing, math, and science, too. I’m going to miss her, but I know she’ll always be looking out for me as long as I’m at school.

Now, I get to wait and see who my teacher is next year and figure out what more I will accomplish. Whatever the goals, I will push to achieve them.

Now this is where I would normally say, “here’s a look back at my first days in school. Stay tuned for my 3rd grade pic.” Unfortunately, my parents say they can’t find my pic from the first day of 2nd grade. I wonder if they even took one. What? Is it a “if you’ve seen one first day, you’ve seen them all” approach??? Come on people, I’m only going to each grade once (hopefully). Show somebody you love me – geez!

And here are some crazy pics of me and some friends I took on my iPad on the last day of school.

It’s a girl….

Yep, after years of having emotional discussions about whether or not we were ready for another mouth to feed…..it would complete our family……the sleepless nights……the joy it would bring……the potty training……and how it would mean I would have to share my parent’s attention……my parents finally concluded the positives outweighed the challenges we could face and decided we could get a puppy!

So then, we had to decide what kind of puppy we wanted. It had to be something we all agreed on. I wanted a little puppy so I could play and cuddle with it and also have it sleep with me — we’ll get to that later. So my dad didn’t want a little dog like a Chihuahua — he wanted a Labrador Retriever like Old Yeller (of course, I think he was hoping for a better ending). Mommy didn’t want a big dog — she wanted a little dog that would have little poops. So here is where I came in and said we should get a medium-sized dog — it’s not rocket science people. So we researched which breeds were good with kids, personable, and easy to train, then we went to the SPCA (Russell H. Perry Animal Care Center) and just picked the prettiest one we saw — research out the window.

We did luck out though because we got a Boxer mix. Mixed with what? Who knows – papa was a rollin’ stone. They think she is most likely mixed with an Australian Shepherd or Australian Cattle Dog because she has a blue eye. The Boxer side of her means she will be very smart, personable, playful, and puppy-like for longer than most dogs. The Aussie side means she will be even smarter, but needs to be challenged mentally or she will create her own little tasks that we may or may not like. Oh, and the Aussie in her means she likes to herd so she has a tendency to nip at our feet when we don’t do what she is wanting.

Remember all of the cute little expectations I had for a puppy — cuddling, playing, sleeping, yadda, yadda, yadda — well, she certainly loves to play, but there is no chance I would let her sleep with me because she uses the bathroom too much. AND it has been raining ever since we got her so she always smells like a wet dog. She also likes to chew a lot even if it’s on me which is natural, but she doesn’t know how sharp her little teeth are so I have to be careful about that. Overall, she’s been a good girl and lots of fun.

Oh and as for how big she will get, we are telling mommy she will be smaller than an average Boxer, but her poop is definitely bigger than a Chihuahua’s.

And now, here’s GiGi — stands for Good Girl, but daddy calls her DD sometimes for Darn Dog (PG version)….

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