A day of new beginnings

I can not believe that summer is over! I’m not saying that I’m sad that summer is over, I just can’t believe that it’s over! The kids have been back in school for a week. It was a big year here in the Hough house. DJ and Coley are officially students at West Shamokin Jr-Sr Highschool! 7th graders!!! I keep telling myself that I am NOT old enough to have kids in highschool, yet here I am….(sigh! to the getting old part, not the highschool part, that’s been really exciting!) There was orientation for the 7th graders at WS the week before school started. Let me just say that orientations are a great idea for the kids, bad idea for the moms. The kids get to see where all of their classes are and do a walk-through of their schedules and see their friends again. Great idea! But the parents have to stand by and watch their kids struggle with the dreaded (duh-duh-duhhhhh!) locks on their lockers. Oh yes, those cursed little pieces of metal that can cause soooo much trouble if not handle just so. I think that I spent most of their first day just praying that they would be able to get them open between classes. I wasn’t worrying about peer pressure or bullies or them getting lost. No, it was those stupid locks that had me on edge all day! Thankfully when they got home that day they had been triumphant (well, mostly!) DJ proudly told me that he had been able to open his locker all but one time. Coley had no problems.Whhheew!

The beautiful Miss Nicole as a seventh grader

DJ on his first day of seventh grade, looking sharp as usual!

Jake is now the big 6th grader at Dayton Elementary. Finally he is the Top Dog, the Big Cheese, the Head Honcho….you get the idea. He was really excited to see his friends again. Not so excited about homework. NO big shock there! I think that his favorite part about this year is that once DJ and Coley leave, he has an hour to mess around on the computer before he has to catch his bus.

The BIG man Jake

Our last scholar to load on to a bus was Isaac. This was his big kindergarten year! He was so excited to go to school that morning that he came out of his room at 7:30 in morning with his shoes and backpack on ready to go. The bad thing is that he is in the afternoon class, which means that his bus doesn’t come until 12:10! He was very disappointed when I explained that he had to eat breakfast and lunch before it would be time to go to school. Needless to say we ate an early lunch that day. At about 11:30 he was pacing back and forth through the dining room. He looked at me and said, “You are going to make me have a heart attack because you won’t let me go and wait for the bus!” I tried unsuccessfully not to laugh at his plight. I got everyone else ready to go and we went out to wait for his bus about 25 minutes early. I couldn’t give him a heart attack on his first day!

Isaac on his first day, my big boy…I can’t believe it!

Bubba and his groupies!
The title of this post is “A day of New Beginnings.” And it really was with the twins starting at the highschool, Jake as the big kid and Isaac starting kindergarten. But that wasn’t the only new beginning. That was the morning that Brian and I found out that we were expecting another little one! Number 8 is officially on his/her way! New Beginnings are always around the corner, sometimes when you least expect it, but they are always good.

Our Trip to Michigan: The Wedding

OK, We finally get to the whole reason of our visit….Molly and Michael’s Wedding!!! The wedding took place at St. Isidore’s Catholic Church on August 9, 2008. First of all, I love weddings! It is such a special time in a couple’s lives. The church was beautiful, the bride was gorgeous, the music was perfect. The couple just beamed at each other and I knew that we were all taking part in something truly amazing. It was obvious that they loved each other and now they had officially made God a part of that love. That is such a blessing and that is why I love to go to weddings.

The beautiful bride, Molly and her dad, Jerry.

Can’t you just feel the love!?

Hannah was very disappointed because the priest never said “You may kiss the bride.” She was waiting for them to kiss so that they would “be married.” Apparently she thinks that you have to kiss on the lips to be married. Ummmm, I saw no reason to explain that isn’t really true. It works for me! But don’t worry we saw lots of kissing at the reception!

It was also really neat to see my daughter, Coley, as a junior bridesmaid. She has truly grown into a beautiful young lady and that was very apparent that day! I just kept thinking back to our wedding when Coley bounced down the aisle as our flowergirl. Her little red curls, and her fancy white ballet slippers have given way to a sophisticated updo and grown up evening sandals. She carried herself with such grace and poise, I couldn’t help but be proud. Where have the last 8 years gone?

Coley and her cousin Sarah

Have you ever seen such beautiful junior bridesmaids?

The Pennsylvania contingent, our family and Joan and Patrick

After the wedding we headed to the reception which took place on Aquinas’ campus. It was really beautiful and kind of reminded me of Grove City’s campus. We took our seats at our very own table. Molly pointed out to me that we were the only family who took up an entire table just by ourselves and that was with Coley sitting at the head table with the bridal party! By this point the kids were getting pretty rowdy. (I know that you are shocked, right?!) There was a candy table that the little girls LOVED. They kept filling their bags with candy and more candy! Just what we needed, more sugar! Brian and the boys were entertained by trying to replicate the fancy folding of the napkins. Once they had mastered the “how” they started to have races. My family is so weird!

Here is Isaac modeling his folded napkin…did I say how weird my family is?

DJ and Jake with their cousin AJ, can we say looks like trouble?

Here is Coley at the head table. Gia kept asking when we were going to get our Sissy back! She didn’t like that she wasn’t sitting with us.

After dinner, the dancing began with the father-daughter dance. Molly and Jerry had gone to dance lessons and it really showed. They did a really great job. It was beautiful. Molly and Michael danced their “first” dance and then there was the bridal dance. This was the first time that Coley had ever danced with a boy who wasn’t her brother. I kept snapping pictures and she kept glaring at me! I think that this is a theme that will continue on for years. I can’t wait for her first dance! Maybe, I’ll chaperone? hmmmm. Anyway, she danced with Jackson, the son of the matron of honor, Sue. He was really cute! Coley was terrified by the thought of dancing with a boy, but she did great! I asked her later what they talked about. She told me that when they first started, he said, “I’m not really good at this. I’ve never done it before.” To which she replied, “Oh, that’s ok, me neither.” That was it, their entire conversation!

This is Coley and her dance partner Jackson. Sooooo cute!

Hannah and Gianna with Dianne, otherwise known as the beloved, Nana Rose

Finally Gia and Hannah had their Sissy back! Once they got her “back” they wouldn’t leave her side for the rest of the night!

The rest of the evening consisted of much dancing and good times! Brian and I got our token “Wedding Slow Dance” that I insist on whenever we go to a wedding. It’s the only time that we ever really get to dance with each other! All of the kids had a blast dancing, which was good for Brian and I. They were so tired at the end of the evening that they basically passed out when we got back to the Roses’ house. It was such a nice wedding and such a fun reception. It is definitely a night that we won’t soon forget!

Hannah and DJ are ready for Dancing with the Stars! Seriously, how cute are my kids!?

This one turned out a little bit blurry, but it was too cute not to post. Jake , his new buddy Jackson, and Bubba with sleeves rolled up leaning back, checking out everyone’s moves on the dance floor!

Bubba is ready to bust a move like a white guy!

The girls doing the ChaCha Slide, Gia’s favorite!

Brian with Noah and his mom, Joan

The next day we rolled out of bed, dressed the kids and went to Mass. When we returned to Jerry and Dianne’s they were getting ready to had brunch with everyone and decided to head out. We had an 8 hour car ride ahead of us and we figured that the sooner we left the better. It worked out pretty well between naps and some movies on the portable DVD player, the kids were pretty good! We even had the pleasure of seeing a rainbow! All in all, we had a very enjoyable vacation! I hope that you enjoyed the blogs. I know that they were long, but it was a very busy time and I like to talk….alot.

Please feel free to check out the rest of the pictures on my facebook page.



Our Trip to Michigan: The Grand Tour of Grand Rapids

The next thing that we did was take a little tour of Grand Rapids. Brian wanted to show the three older kids where they were born and where they lived and a few of their favorite places to play. I enjoyed it too! It was nice to see alot of the places that were in pictures from when the kids were babies. The first place that we went to was a park. It was beautiful and had a trail that went around a huge pond, but the best part was ducks, tons and tons of ducks that flock all around you when they think that you have food. The little ones loved that too, especially Bubba!

The Houghs versus The Mighty Ducks!

We made friends when we broke out the potato chips!


The park also had a totally kick butt playground too! Of course we took advantage of that!

Hannah took on the rock wall like a champ!

Daddy with Noah

Gianna Marie, is she adorable or what?

The next stop on our tour was Tunnel Beach! It is a beautiful beach right on Lake Michigan. We had so much fun! Brian and the kids had gone to Tunnel beach the day before while Coley and I were “tubing.” But we thought that it would be a fun thing to do with the whole family. We were right! We all had a blast! The water was pretty cold when we first got there, but that was actually a good thing. Because it was so cold, the little kids didn’t want to go into the water. That meant that we didn’t have to worry about them drowning. Always a good thing!

Freakshows! They had so much fun jumping the waves.

THE tunnel leading to Tunnel Beach

Bubba running on the beach.

Gia was so happy, she just danced up and down the beach. She makes me smile!

Noah loved “hiding” in the grass. He even tried to eat it…YUCK!

Jake was a digging fool! He wouldn’t play in the water with Dj and Coley and I. He was too cold. He opted to sweat in the sand! His loss! The water was great!

The bathing beauty! Load up on sunscreen! Redhead’s don’t tan!

My beautiful brood!

Hannah was building sandcastles! Noah was destroying them almost as quickly as she could build them, but it made for a fun day!

Me and my boy!

Oh DJ! You are such a goofball!

Our tour was completed the following day when we saw the hospital that the kids were born in, the house that they lived in for their first few years and the church that they attended. It was such a neat thing to see these places that were so important to them.
Keep watching for the final installment of Our trip to Michigan: The Wedding.