Saturday, June 15, 2013

Memorial Day 2013

For the last 6 years, Memorial Day and any other "free" time often meant Daddy was working on his dissertation.  This year it was glorious!  The weather was beautiful - blue skies, sunny, and not at all hot or humid.  We had such a great weekend relaxing as a WHOLE family.

First up, strawberry picking

 Later that day we hung out on The Lawn at UVA.

The next day we had a picnic at King Family Vineyards with some friends.  There was supposed to be a polo match but they canceled because of all the rain.  With such beautiful weather, there were still tons of people enjoying the day. 

On Monday we went for a little walk on the Monticello Trail

It was a perfect weekend of playing outside as a family and with friends.  
We look forward to many more.

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Something to blog about!

  I have neglected the blog for quite some time.  And really, even when I do blog, it's just pictures with captions.  I figured I had to get caught up though because Steve finally completed his PhD! 
  He was taking courses part-time when we met in 2004.  After one year of marriage, he left work to do full-time course work.  After completing his courses, he got his first assistant principal position and took a year off from the program because we also had Eliza.  (plenty to deal with in one year)
Since 2009, he has worked part-time on his dissertation, while working full-time, and being a Dad and husband.  That meant lots of late nights and Sundays at the coffee shop.  It was always hanging over our heads whenever there was "free" time.  I am so proud of him for pushing through!
 We had our families join us on Saturday for brunch.
 Nana Sue and Eliza made chocolate covered strawberries.
 Then, we headed over to UVA for the Curry School Doctoral Hooding Ceremony.
This was an hour-long ceremony where each Doctoral student was "hooded" by their advisor as a short personal statement was read.  Both kids went with us and were fantastic.  Owen was with Mina almost the entire time.

Once he joined Mommy, the iphone came out. 

How cute are these shoes?

The night before, when I was telling Eliza about graduation and said that we were celebrating Daddy be all done with his dissertation (both kids use that word frequently).  She said, "And then he can start all over again!" Not quite, my dear.  

Steve and his sister, Brooke

Proud Saunders parents

Proud Zierden parents

Owen (not on purpose) punched Steve at this point!

Brooke, both sets of parents, and I got Steve a present.

It's framed photographs of things around UVA, spelling out Virginia.  Our friend's wife started the company that makes these great personal gifts for tons of schools in VA and the South. 

On Sunday, Steve did not walk The Lawn, as you do at UVA.  He has done it before and the logistics with kids and parking were just too much to think about.  Our parents came back to town and Mom stayed with Owen, while Eliza went with us to the Curry Diploma ceremony.

Steve and my Dad are kindred spirits.  I never felt like I was specifically looking for a husband like my Dad, but I certainly found one.   Not only are they both school administrators, but they are loving, kind, and extroverted to the max!

I can't wait to pull this out in about 14 years.  

I'm so proud of my Dr!