Page week


We are so proud of Hayley being selected as a NC State House Page. She managed the entire application process herself. Turned out Wake County’s selections were already made since there is no set deadline to apply but occasionally there are extra spots that they saved to give to students who have a good application. They told me they especially liked her application because it was clear she did it, not a parent, so they’d try to get her a spot. Well turned out the Speaker of the NC House Thom Tillis had a spot and so he was her sponsor.

She had a fantastic week. It was long and tiring but she got to witness a great week – the centerpiece being house budget with the Governor including education proposal but a lot of other interesting debates on drone usage and charter school discrimination, which got weird. Even a huge Moral Monday protest was going on. Since they were there until 9pm that Monday night, the pages got an interesting view of that too. They went to the Governor’s press conference as well. They ran all sort of errands, met lots of legislators and interacted with other kids from across the state – this week had about 20 House Pages.

cary page note

She only took a couple of photos but not many as she was focusing on working. But boy did they get a pile of nice certificates, press releases and all sort of stuff from the State House. They do a great job with things and we are thrilled she got to experience government in action up close.

photo 2



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Drag Bingo


We posted in February of last year about Hayley and I having an awesome time at Drag Bingo. If you don’t know what I’m talking about, it is Drag Queens and Bingo, joined together as a fantastic fundraiser for the Alliance of AIDS Services. They alternate drag performances with a round of bingo.

We had so much fun we started going regularly, bringing our friends and making new ones there. It’s a great event, we sit with friends with kids too. We’ve run into others we know, friends, teachers, all sorts of families and people. It isn’t for everyone and maybe some people find it shocking that we take our friends but it’s never too young to teach tolerance and it’s a damn good fun time.

More photos from these sets:

>>April (slideshow view) (detailed view)

>>June (slideshow view) (detailed view)

>>Aug (slideshow view) (detailed view)

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Hayley getting award at school (updated)


Hayley got the Teacher’s Choice award today in Science at the Honors Assembly this morning! (update – I added photos from the event and going out that afternoon with her friends)

Click through to see what the award say:

Her teacher gave a speech about her that was just adorable. For those of you who have known either me or Jeff for a long time, you’ll find the part about ‘quirky being good because it is creative, different and unique’ very funny and so appropriate for our kid. Hayley is one of a kind and she’s so lucky to find teachers who aren’t annoyed but find that praiseworthy. For what it’s worth, she had such a solid A in science she didn’t even use any of her extra credit.

(turn your volume up loud to hear)

Then her teachers did some ‘entertainment’ to end the assembly. This is her science, social studies, math and language arts teachers singing Justin Bieber’s Baby Baby. Hayley and a friend got to stand up on the tables and help by holding up signs with some of the lyrics. Hayley is really lucky to go to such a great school with dynamic teachers.

(turn the volume down a bit now, lol)

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The GOOD kind of email from school


Dear Parents,

I’ve got a bit of good news for you: Your child has been chosen to receive one of our Teacher’s Choice Awards at the Honors Assembly! That’s a pretty big deal, considering how hard the transition from elementary to middle school can be. Your sons and daughters have really impressed us—either by being kind and courteous to their teachers and their peers, by doing remarkable work in all of our classes, or by showing determination and persistence to do better. Whatever the reason, we’re proud of your kids!

(edited version)t

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Our fun night at Drag Bingo


We had a great time on Friday night going to Drag Bingo at the Raleigh Convention Center downtown. Yes that’s right Drag Queens and bingo, joined together as a fantastic fundraiser for the Alliance of AIDS Services. They’d alternate drag performances with a round of bingo. Hayley almost won one of the big games, she was sure she was going home with a bag of cash. Hysterical hosts, amazing performances and a fun crowd. Taking photos was remarkable – the motion of the outfits, the over the top vibrant makeup… I was in photo heaven. We can’t wait to go to the next one!

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Jump Rope for Heart fundraising


Hi to my friends and family. I am doing a Jump Rope for Heart fundraiser for The American Heart Association. I am doing this b/c our principal Ms Willard had a heart attack and I want to help raise money in honor. She means a lot to us. I have other family members too who have had heart problems and this is for them too.

Can you please help me raise donations to help out? You can donate online here: My Jump Rope for Heart donation page or you can send my Mom a check.

Thanks for your help!

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Photo Gallery: Hayley at the SPCA


As many of you know, Hayley had her friends give her donations for the SPCA instead of gifts for her 10th birthday party. They all had great fun getting gifts and we didn’t feel guilty about throwing a huge party again.

We got in touch with the volunteer education coordinator at our local SPCA in Raleigh and she gave us a personal tour of the facility when we dropped off our donations.

Lots of photos and notes from things she learned and wanted to share:

The new lovely SPCA center in Raleigh:

Hayley loved that the cats live in an open room with other cats and their own little cubbies:

A staff member’s husband made PVC pipe additions for the cats to have places to perch and roam:

Our SPCA doesn’t allow people to adopt animals they don’t intend of keeping outside all the time. They have an indoor/outdoor room to show the pets enjoying both:


The SPCA also has bunnies:

Microchip investigation:

Happy dogs with space to play:


We have lots of donations:

Oooo a certificate for Hayley!:

Other neat things she learned and remembered:

-Our SPCA loves to have people to come visit the animals because it helps them get ready to move to new homes.

-Our SPCA is a no-kill shelter, so the animals aren’t put to sleep.

-Our SPCA has a neat volunteer program for kids and parents.

-Our SPCA tries to keep most animals in group rooms because most people adopting from the SPCA have more than one pet.

-Our SPCA keeps kittens and puppies in more open cages because they are often young and new arrivals.

I’m so proud of her!

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Photo Gallery: Hayley as ‘celebrity judge’ at Webkinz Party



OH MY GOSH, Hayley and I had so much fun at the Webkinz Party at Swagger Gifts today. We got to judge contests, buy webkinz at 50% off, face/arm painting with the Webkinz W, snacks, coloring and all sorts of stuff.

Hayley, myself and Mandy, the wonderful store owner, were the judges of the contests – best room, best name, most webkinz and best drawing/coloring. That is Hayley and Mandy going over rooms of drawings – those were the final group, there were over 100 rooms entered! Hayley got a Black Bear for helping and since they were 50% off ($6 for lil’kinz and $7 for kinz!) we got four of those that we’ll enter later (well except one, the lil’kinz googles which we entered already!

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  • Best Room Design: #1 Julia’s room, #2 Olivia’s room, #3 (tie) Anna & Patrick’s rooms.
  • Best Names: #1 Polar Bear named Coca-Cola, #2 Panda named Ling-Ling, #3 Dalmation named Black Pepper. Honorable Mention: Golden Retriever named Butterscotch, Cocker Spaniel named Goldilocks, Koala named Kung Fu and a Polar Bear named Icee.
  • Best Coloring of Webkinz page: Overall winner, Colton with Chef Gazpacho, #1 in 5-6 year olds: Connor’s Tabitha Von Meow page, #1 in 7-8 year olds: Abri’s Ms Birdy page and #1 in 9-10 year olds: Katherine’s Dr. Quack page.
  • Most Webkinz: Shelby with 47 (you had to prove this so people might have had more but they didn’t have the documentation)

This was so much fun, Mandy is so wonderful to have done this – and she even promoted the blog to people!

-Michelle & Hayley

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Photo Gallery: Babysitting Landon



Hayley got to help me babysit Landon who is our friends Sara and Mike’s son. It was so fun to have a sweet baby around. Some of you might remember the photos of him in the NICU months ago. He’s happy and doing awesome now!

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Hayley’s Jump Rope for Heart donation link


Hi! I’m joining in the American Heart Association Jump Rope for Heart event at my school. I will be jumping rope to help the American Heart Association raise money to fight heart disease and stroke. Can you help me by making a donation? Thanks!

The American Heart Association’s online fundraising website has a minimum donation amount of $25.00. If you want to donate less, that’s ok. You can just send the check right to me and I’ll make sure the American Heart Association gets it.

Follow This Link to visit my personal web page and help me in my efforts to support American Heart Association – Mid-Atlantic Affiliate

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