John David Pate-3years old

James Daniel Pate-3years old

Saturday, December 14, 2013

Miracle Babies....FIVE years old!!

I am not sure how you blink and your "babies" are FIVE years old....I am sure mommas across America would identify with this same bitter sweetness of raising babies into children, and children into teens, and teens into adults. . When I remember this week of their "birth-day", December 11, 2008...I have a combination of emotions that is quite exhausting if I bare the honest truth. I remember sights and sounds from that day that make my stomach twine a knot. There are so many faces of people who showered us with so much love and prayer for these lil guys. I see all of their faces. I can easily visualize the nights of solitary silence I would sit in my living room, gazing at the beautiful Christmas tree lights, and cry out to Jesus, "Help me Lord, Help me have the strength to handle it all.."

I am so thankful, so very humbled and beyond honored to have these two FIVE year olds to celebrate with today. Watching them develop into their own rich, beautiful souls is nothing shy of a MIRACLE, and definitely a "GOD GIFT" for our family. 

James Daniel--
Such a loving child. Very sensitive and aware of his surroundings. Loves to create and invent. Wants to be independent. Loves to drink Ensure milkshakes, chocolate Devil's food cake doughnuts, hot dogs, carrots and ranch dressing and "spaghetti meat"....Always has a hat, gloves, glasses or belt tied around his waist. Loves Camo. Loves Auburn. and LOVES his school, CASA.  Sings and plays guitar. 

John David--
Funny always saying something to make us all laugh. He is happy to be playing with 'nothing'...will spend time chopping trees with a stick if that is all he can find. ACTIVE boy...rides his bikes, scooters, whatever can "go" fast on...Loves to watch TV and play Ipad. Wants to be first, and tends to over talk others. Loves SUGAR...always asking when the next treat will be. Wants to know dessert before dinner. Wants to watch crazy scary stuff, like Mario with the bad guy, or Smurfs with the mean guy, but then is scared to death to sleep at night. Loves pirates. Loves ninjas. and LOVES football. Talks about playing football all the time. 

Thank you Heavenly Father for the blessing of these two little boys. I pray you will empower me to raise them first to know you, and second to be amazing men of honor and integrity like their Dad. I thank you for the family you have designed for us. I thank you for my husband that leads us in your direction. I thank you for a love that is nurtured through your Holy Spirit. I ask that your protective love and spirit would manifest itself through all the members of our family. Thank you for this day to "celebrate your miracles"...

Saturday, December 7, 2013

Interviews with each kid..

Claire McKinley Pate:

Who is your bestfriend - Leah Nielsen
What is your favorite breakfast food- Chick Fil A
What is your first choice restaurant for dinner- Bone Fish
Favorite soda-Dr. Pepper
Favorite candy- Jolly Rancher Chews
What do you wish for right now-I wish I could go Black Friday shopping with you, Momma.
If you could change something about your school, what would it be- I would hope for kids to be nicer, and the bathrooms to be cleaner.

Favorite fashion- riding boots, skinny jeans, cute shirt
Favorite color- coral and yellow
Highlights in your life this year- Auburn Georgia game, getting Gus, WhiteWater

Jenna Kathryn Pate:

Who is your best friend- Savannah Holder and Elizabeth Oswald
What is your favorite breakfast food- Waffles with whip cream and strawberries
What is your first choice restaurant for dinner- Olive Garden (because I love their desserts)
Favorite soda- Root beer
What do you wish for right now- I wish it was my birthday right now.
If you could change something about your school, what would it be- We could swim at school for recess.

Favorite fashion- Purple/Blue/Indigo dress with rhinestones
Favorite color- hot pink
Highlights in your life this year- Won my last soccer game and got my back bend kick over by myself, riding my bike without training wheels, and we got Gus.

Ellie Brooklyn Pate

Who is your best friend- Jillian Edwards
What is your favorite breakfast food- Pancakes, waffles, biscuits,
What is your first choice restaurant for dinner- Mt Fuji
Favorite soda- Diet Coke
What do you wish for right now- I can go to Flip Fest.I could get 1st all around on my state meet.
If you could change something about your school, what would it be- Recess could be 2 hours.

Favorite fashion- High/low shirt with rhinestones with sparkling jeans and diamond black high heeled boots.
Favorite color- hot pink and lavender
Highlights in your life this year- I made the gymnastics team, we got Gus, Becky and Rosey moved to Alabama.

John David

Who is your best friend-- Ben
What is your favorite breakfast food--Waffles
What your first choice restaurant for dinner--Winn Dixie
Favorite soda--Sprite
What do you wish for--A new stocking for Gus

What do you love to play with--batman cars
Favorite superhero-Hulk
Favorite movie--Home Alone

James Daniel

Who is your best friend--Colt
What is your favorite breakfast food--Pancakes
What is your first choice restaurant for dinner--Nana's house (tomato soup with meat loaf)
Favorite soda--root beer
What do you wish for--Christmas

What do you love to play with--toy soldiers
Favorite superhero-- batman
Favorite movie--Ralphie with the big gun

The best part of interviewing the kids every few months, is the different responses I get from each kid. I love to just listen to each of them individually. We spend a lot of time together as a family talking, but spending a few minutes individually with them is priceless....

Sunday, October 13, 2013

Fall is in the Air...Recap from September

August brings about the chaos and rush of "back to school"....It only takes a few weeks to "get back in the swing of things" and before we know it, we are on the brink of Fall! Leaves changing colors, cooler temps, less humidity. Gorgeous fall mornings on the weekends to run and spend playtime outside. Claire decided to run cross country this season. She did well for her first season, until she fell unexpectedly off of a rip stick and suffered a concussion. Several weeks of rest, healed her concussion but forced her to miss the last half of her season. :-(

Ellie is in the beginning midst of her competitive gymnastics season. She is competing a level 3 this year. We are very proud of her hard work and determination. She practices over 13 hours a week to prepare for these meets. Lots of sacrifice and concentration to excel are required. Her first practice meet she did very well. Learned a lot about herself as an athlete and became aware of the "competitive edge/drive" than many athlete have. 

Watching Football with Daddy!

Practice Gymnastics Meet

who is entertaining who here???

Claire and her friends, with James Daniel, cheering on Ellie at her gymnastics meets!

Oh geez...starting waaaaay to young!

I love this lady! Bri Mitchell is one of Ellie's gymnastics coaches. She own Legacy Gymnastics, where Ellie is on their competitive gymnastics team. This coach does more than just coach gymnastics skills, she spends quality time helping develop the character and charisma of each of her gymnast. I am proud to be a part of such a special organization. 

Ellie Bug and Jenna Boo hanging out after Ellie's meet. 

Ice-cream  treat for working so flipping hard for 13+ hours a week in the gym!

Claire's first cross country race, running for the Berry Jags!

she is barely awake....but Momma is WIDE AWAKE!

Hot, DONE, and out of the SUN!

Too tired to even open eyes for the pic...Lol!

Friday, August 23, 2013

Family BEACH Trip...

Our annual family Beach trip to Destin was absolutely wonderful. This year we were fortunate enough to have Rob's mom and dad join us, so the kids got double dosed with all the goodies of a vacation! We had beautiful weather and enjoyed our days of sun and sand to the fullest. The kids loved having "Vera's Kitchen" (aka Mamaw's cooking) for breakfast each morning. The boys rode race cars with Papa and Daddy. The girls and I had a day of a "walking road trip" when we walked to the gas station from the beach and purchased a bunch of "junk food" and had just Mommy and girls beach time. We jumped waves in an inflatable boat for at least an hour and then vegged out on the sand, eating Jolly Rancher chews, diet coke and Air Heads. Boys went to the fishing pier with their daddy and Mamaw and Papa. Nothing tops the memory of "Captain Daves"...the WORST seafood restaurant experience we have ever had. Beautiful memories like that just flood my mind as I sit her and reflect over our week at Destin. I can't stop smiling and laughing in my heart just remembering it all. Very grateful heart.
Nothing like waking up and heading STRAIGHT to the BEACH!

In Mamaw and Papa's van...literally woke up 20 min before heading out on the road....sleepy but SO excited!



Not even checked into our condo yet, and kids are already in the pool! This is a traditional spot for them each year. 

I love my Claire Bear, and I am crazy over the fact that she is completely growing up so fast!!!

I took this picture right after the words "REMEMBER YOU HAVE A CHOICE, BE KIND AND PLAY TOGETHER OR BE UNKIND AND DON'T PLAY!!!" They chose to hold hands...LOL!

Patio time with Papa

Handstanding on the sand! Really the girl handstands everywhere though...I probably have a hundred pics like this one all over the earth!

My girls are growing up...I started taking this kind of pic when Claire was Jenna's age and Jenna was in a baby seat!


Playing in the sand with Daddy....and this is a perfect example of a loving, selfless father (doesn't like to play in sand at all but loves to play with his sons) so therefor he "plays in the sand" ...LOL 

Handstanding on the beach....or trying too! LOL

Momma Bear still got it! Whoo hoo baby...

"Mommy caught me a hermit crab!"

Dinner time....who needs fancy overpriced salads at the Whale's Tail....Momma Bear can make a fabulous bowl of greens and goods!

Jenna saying good night to her "sweet lil crusty, crab"
She named her "Crystal" from Crystal Beach...

CANDY CRUSH  with Dad!

now that is some GOOOOOD sleepin!

LOVE this lil grin



Laughed so hard watching and listening to the kids swim with Mamaw. Such fun!


My LOVE....

The handsome Men in my life:-)

Jenna Kat

I love early Mornings with my Claire Bear....she is NOT a morning girl!


Rob and I also celebrated our Anniversary while at the beach. 14 years of a beautiful marriage, that only our Creator is responsible for. Rob and I couldn't take the credit for our success in our marriage, because we are too selfish and broken as humans. We have to credit to the One who SUSTAINS us, through all the facets of life. I can honestly say I love him more now than I ever have, and I pray daily that the love we have is protected and preserved through our Lord Jesus as "life" continues on.

 Thanking God on this beautiful morning for so many gifts in my husband being my first!
14 years ago we took a picture like this in Cancun Mexico on our honeymoon. We were so young and dumb...but SO in love and still are today!

THE BEST MEAL....EVER! So yummy. We will definitely return to the Marina Cafe!

And so the end of our week, as Momma Bear always wants to do, we took family pictures. Here are a few of the best ones...No way would we have these fantastic pics without our fantastic photographers...Papa and Mamaw!!

Our family prayer we say each morning before school and work:
"Thank you Lord for this day. Help us God obey your ways. In all we say and all we do, help us serve and honor You. Help us learn from our mistakes, please Bless our Family. We love you, The Pates"

1, 2, 3....TEAM PATE
 (This family is totally a team effort...)

Wind was out of control...we were laughing so hard, trying to get everyone looking at the camera in the split second the wind was not gusting around us...And John David couldn't stop loving on was funny!

NO CAPTION...Think she is ALL DONE with the family pics...HHAHA!

Learned how to chicken fight in the pool so they wanted to try in on the sand. Goofy lil guys.
 They keep us laughing!

That's my girl Jenna, side planks on the sand like Momma! LOL!

Natural smiles are the best!

In no way, will I ever feel that I deserve these precious souls. I thank God daily for allowing me the journey of "Motherhood"...I thank Him for each of these kids. They are all so uniquely different and have a perfect place etched into our family. I mention our family as a "team" so often, but it truly is what defines us. Our ship only sails when all the sailors are aboard. And definitely having a "Captain" that guides us and directs us along life's journey. Some day, Momma Bear feels like the ship might sink, and other days it is sailing on serene, calm seas. Whatever comes our way, we honor Him with our lives, and humble ourselves in His grace and mercy.

Heavenly Father, I thank you for family and relationship in life. I thank you for the memorable times you allow us as a family to build with one another on vacations. I thank you for the  protection of your hands on our family. I thank you for the lessons you teach me daily in how to submit my ways unto your will. I pray blessing and favor over each of my children and especially over my husband, Rob. In your Son's name, I honor You and ask these things.