Kauai 2016

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Thirteen days of sun, beach, pool and warm weather.  We may have gotten sick and fought fevers and snot- but we still had a great time.  What a wonderful way to start the new year off!

Henry braved the ocean waves and became a constant beach companion with Chris and the next body surfing champ.  When he wasn’t being tossed by waves, he was a fish in the pool with his snorkel.   His new tricks of somersaults and handstands were also a part of our pool days.

Bennett loved the pool and showed off with his crawlstroke with side breathing!  He loved the beach, but wasn’t much into body surfing- he was more a tip toe into the waves and then hippity hop back up to the sand.

Rory was a big fan of the huge holes that his brother and father dug on the beach.  Especially when they filled up with waves- made a great hot tub.  He loved the pool, especially when he kicked around in his inner tube- he became quite brave, much to his parents dismay.

Chris and I celebrated our wedding anniversary with intentions of dinner out- but with illness and beach playing we never got around to it.  We will plan on something before June!

We had a great time with Grandma and Bapa.  Grandma was always up to crafts and Bapa saved the morning Mama was sick when he took Rory out for a donut run (Chris was very appreciative!).  Aunt Courtney entertained with football Sundays and Aunt Teresa and Uncle Scott pampered us with a beach/poolside cabana (a great way to spend a Sunday morning I must say) and a boogie board.  What a lucky bunch we are!

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{this moment} SIX

Our first week back (I promise vacation photos soon!) to reality: co-op, school, a birthday and new classes.  Mama, for one, is wiped and ready for a weekend recharge (after a birthday party, of course).

Our Benny turned six this week.  Apparently when you turn six, you are incredibly happy and skippy for your entire birthday.  Then, you start wondering why more people haven’t sent you money in cards… Oh Bennett- gratitude and happiness with what we have is a tough one for you- we dealt with this on your last birthday too.  Luckily Mama and Dada got you a new game that you really enjoy (even if you didn’t get stacks of money and piles of Lego sets).

This year has been a big one and I can’t wait to see what six brings.  We started a new tradition of taking the birthday boy out for dinner with just Mama and Dada (Bennett thought this was very cool) and we talked about all the things that we had done while he was five and all the things that he could look forward to while being six.  We are starting piano lessons and we are trying out new classes (usually fails, but we are trying).

Bennett, you are stubborn, smart and so wonderful.  You do not like change AT ALL.  You enjoy school, but do not like NOT understanding something.  I can usually talk you through it and you figure it out and then you are all smiles, but the initial thought that something is too hard can be very hard for you to overcome (hence the failing at trying new classes).

Your laugh is wonderful- you throw your head back and laughter takes over your whole body.  I love watching you so happy.  Your crying also has the same vigor and we have had to have discussions about what is appropriate reactions to situations (i.e., sand in your eye should not warrant the same reaction as if your had lost a finger, etc.).  You are an emotional guy- which makes you amazing and baffling at the same time.

You love being outside- riding your bike or creating a mess with Henry are some of your favorite things.  You love games- card games especially right now.  You love to read, to color and to eat pancakes.  For your birthday dinner you requested hamburgers with mashed potatoes plus a chocolate cake with chocolate frosting and a strawberry smiley face that you decorated.  For a kid that has a hard time making decisions- the cake was an easy one.  It was delicious.

Bennett- you have grown up so much over these past few years and it makes me sad and happy at the same time.  I remember your second birthday and you told me that “I be two” all day long.   You are now six and are thriving in ways that I couldn’t imagine.  This year we figured out your dairy intolerance and that has made a world of difference for you- you no longer are in pain and that makes me happy.  You are thriving in school and you are one major reason why we decided to homeschool- you would not fair well in a traditional school setting- but it has been a blast watching you blow through math problems like they are nothing and starting to read.   I have said it before, but you are blowing me away with what you do on a daily basis.  You are keeping me on my toes and we have had to reach for some first grade curriculum to keep up with you.  So cool.

You love hanging out with your friends, especially if they come to our house.  You get overwhelmed when we are at other peoples houses that you are not familiar with.  You usually warm up by the time we are going home- but even this is a far cry from where we started (which was usually a lot of crying).  You are your own person- you do things on your own time- this has taught me more then you could ever know.  However, I am still confused by your love of swimming, your swimming skills (which were very impressive in Hawaii- hello side breathing!) and then your hatred for swim lessons.  We cry, we protest and Mama talks and talks and tries her hardest to remind you that you love the water.  When you do get in- you can not stop smiling.  This is by far my most frustrating aspect of parenting you- I just do not understand.  Once your body hits water you are so happy- it is just the getting in that really shuts down your body and brain.  One of these days you are just going to jump right in and I am going to fall over, until then it is exhausting.

Benny- we love you so much.  You bring so much joy to our lives.  You make us more patient, you make us more emotional and you make us more grounded.  You are so happy being at home with your family (especially if we let you watch a show…).

Happy Birthday Benny-Boo!

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{this moment}

Our first week back into the swing of things- co-op, school work, a trip to the library  and a museum visit.  We are even more ready for our vacation next week then we were before- toddlers and art museums are not such a good mix (Mama really could have guessed that one)!

I was reminded this week of Henry’s love of history and have big plans for February.  He currently knows the same amount of history involving the Civil and Revolutionary wars as his parents- which is equally frightening and amazing.  I can’t wait to learn more with him!

And my Benny- I can not get over his enthusiasm for school work.  I so wish it worked for his brother, but we will work on that.  This kid is happy with math worksheets, a puzzle and a hike- if we never left the house he would not complain.  I can not believe he will be six in just a few short weeks.

With Mama back in the kitchen, everyone has had requests.  My eldest boy picked out a recipe from his Spanish cookbook (he loves Spain and will be starting Spanish when we return from vacation) and was set to be my sous chef.  I honestly have not had more fun making dinner- he was a delight (we had chicken with green mayonnaise if you are wondering).

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happy new year

We had a low key New Years- both Mama and Dada worked on the 31st and it was a normal bedtime evening at our house.  Dada even had the added enjoyment of trying to keep a nervous dog calm (our prescription drugs don’t work as well as they once did).   We all had sniffles and it seemed smart to stay put- sort of our style anyway.

This weekend is being spent catching up with friends, building Rory’s new bed and hanging out.  Our normal schedule resumes Monday.  I am glad we only have a short time of that before our vacation- then I will be ready for the new year (mine just happens to start in February!).  Once February hits it is back to swim lessons, soccer (not until spring but, honestly, that will be here before we know it) and other classes the boys are interested in.   We will be finishing up projects and  trying to get a few weekend get-aways before June and our family grows.  We are excited, still in a fog about what is happening and looking forward to what this new one will bring to our family.

We wish everyone well for the new year- may you have all the happiness you can muster, all the joy you can take and that you can be as relaxed as possible.   We are not big on resolutions, but I do think it is a good time to sit back to make sure our priorities are in check.  With a new one on the way, it has made us slow down, enjoy each other and relax a whole bunch- which I think is a really, really good thing.

Happy New Year!

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merry moments & lazy moments

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What a Christmas!  A bit of a whirlwind and a lack of photo documentation to boot!  The boys were spoiled, loved and gifted more than they could have ever imagined.  We over indulged in good food and cookies and have created an artic base camp in the boys bedroom.  Rory has been vrooming his new fire truck and excavator around the kitchen and has actually been occupied enough to not go and destroy the previously mentioned base camp.  The older boys declared this Christmas, “Lego Christmas” due to the amount of lego sets they received, all of which were promptly put together on Christmas day.  We even had present opening breaks to facilitate the Lego building- they just couldn’t wait (or eat for that matter).

And now the recovery portion of the holiday- full of fevers, movie days and sore throats.  And one adult has thrown out his back- just to make this interesting!  (My couch buddy- the fevered, sore throated one…)

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Lazy moments is a bit of an understatement of how we have trucking through the last few days- and honestly, how we have been making it through the last few months.  Amazon was this Mama’s best friend to prepare for the season.  It turns out that being in your first trimester of pregnancy, raising a few boys and also schooling makes things hard, really hard.  But now, once we get through this virus of course, we are going to take the new year by storm.  We are going to get our energy back and get healthy and get back to our old selves!

And lest I forget a few other lazy moments- a morning spent in a stick fort will result in a few days of near blindness and pain.  Sticks = 1, Bennett =0  Luckily his cornea recovered in time for our Lego Christmas.

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AND… drum roll please… our first eggs!  What a surprise, what a treat!  We were all a bit excited!

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{this moment}

A little late due to a sick Mama…

We had a great week- finished up co-op for the year, second to last ice-skating lesson and went to the Nutcracker.  The show was great, the boys were well behaved and then Mama got sick.  Ugh.  She missed work on Friday and a friends race on Saturday.  Yuck!  Saturday was spent relaxing- watching The Polar Express, a little fudge making (I just watched Grandma do this, but if she needed something, I got it- team work I tell ya!) and some online shopping.  It has been blustery and nice to stay indoors,  but the boys are getting a bit antsy.

We had Henry’s piano recital Sunday and he was calm and collected.  He went straight up to the piano, played Jingle Bells and then headed straight back to his seat.  In and out- thank you very much.

This week is finishing up some more school things, working on holiday crafting (although not everyone is on board with that) and enjoying the calmness of not having so many activities!

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Telling me something very important, of course…

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{this moment}

We had a wonderful Thanksgiving, although no pictures were taken of the actual event.  Something I really need to work on!

This last week was spent getting back into the swing of things before everything ends after next week for the winter holiday.  We are ready.  We are ready for Christmas crafting, baking cookies and playing.   Honestly, we are ready for some snow.  That would be awesome.

A few snippets of the past few weeks:

Dada and I were invited to a performance.  It included running around, falling on the ground and this sweet little kitten.  He sometimes came out of his cage (which was behind the viewing chairs) and showed us his biscuits (pencils).  The other two performers were a little nuts.

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Dada tried to get a cute picture of the boys, but one was grumpy so they all faced the wall instead- nice try Dada.

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We got our tree and had some help decorating.  We re-decorate the tree E V E R Y single night.  Someone (hint: the young one pictured above) likes to leave piles of ornaments on the floor.

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Another attempt and a nice photo together.  Goofs.

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