Traveling home to Virginia for our summer visit/reunion was exhausting and crazy! We hadn't been home to Virginia since November 2012 and we were excited to visit again! We had 3 different flights (the first one was a red-eye) but due to some random severe thunderstorms our last flight got cancelled. We tried unsuccessfully to get on a different flight but finally had to spend the night in Detroit and catch a flight out the next morning. But they didn't have any space on flights to DC so we had to fly to Harrisburg, PA and Kevin very kindly volunteered to drive 2 hours away (one way) to pick us up.
Smiles at the beginning of the first flight. We kept getting 3 seats together and one across the aisle. I figured we would take turns trading off sitting with the baby and with the other two but because they only have extra oxygen masks on one side of the aisle, the person on the side with the three seats had to hold the baby, and that had to be me because I needed to be able to nurse Betty during take off and landing and during the flight as well.
Our big girl on her first day of Bright Beginnings preschool! We had tried to get her into a session earlier but they were all full for fall and winter, so we were very glad to hear that Cora could do a short summer session with them to get a little bit of preschool in before starting all day kindergarten. I wasn't too worried about her struggling academically in kindergarten but knew she could use the social practice as well as just getting used to having a school routine. She was super excited and felt like a very big girl. She wore the dress I had made for her a few months back and her new owl backpack. She was enrolled in a three week session, but wound up being sick for the entire middle week so only got two in. It was only morning for about 3.5 hours but still it did help prepare her for school.
The kids love playing at the elementary school playground sometimes as a break from the TVA ones. Lately Elijah's been loving watching Spiderman and his Amazing Friends, the old cartoon from the 80s, so he loves playing on the big spiderweb at the school and pretending to be Spiderman. This time Cora was pretending to be Firestar, Elijah was Spiderman, Ryan was Iceman and Betty was Aunt May. ;)
On Mother's Day May 11th I was so happy to hear Ryan bless our little baby Betty in his YSA ward where he served in the bishopric. She wore the beautiful blessing gown that Grandma Madelyn made when Cora was born. Thanks to Grandpa Doug, Uncle Alvin, Uncle John, Bishop Kehoe and Kent for participating in this blessing with Ryan. It made Mother's day so special.
We tried to take pics at the temple after church but our kids were less than helpful.
We named our baby Elizabeth Tam Nielson, planning on using Betty as the nickname for Elizabeth. Elizabeth is my middle name, and Betty and Tam are my grandma's names. She was born with some very distinctive birthmarks on her face, just like her big sister Cora. Like Cora's, these are expected to fade after a year or so. The nurse informed us that these types of birthmarks are known as angel kisses, and indeed, the one on her forehead looks like a lipstick mark. I love having this little reminder of where she comes from and treasure the thought of one of our many family members in heaven giving her a parting kiss before sending her down to us.