Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Spring Wildflowers

Spring brought us some amazing sights to see this season, with a colorful variety of wildflowers in full bloom across the city. Lucky for us, there were a few fields of them at our neighborhood park for us to enjoy on our walks. I borrowed my dad's SLR camera and took the opportunity after church one day to snap some shots of the boys in the flowers. The wildflowers seemed to be a sea of red- it was really beautiful.

 Conner wasn't too thrilled to be set down at this moment, but it's still adorable-

There's my little self-soothing thumb sucker, resigned to his fate in the wildflowers-

When we went for walks around the park, the boys really were impressed by the flowers' colors, pointing them out and asking to go pick them. I hope they're this beautiful next year!

Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Turning 3

Jason had his 3rd birthday in April and is now officially a big boy. We spent the days leading up to his special day practicing his new answer to the question "how old are you?," getting 3 fingers up instead of just 2. Where does the time go? I still think of him as my baby, proven by the fact that I constantly call Conner- my actual baby- Jason half the time! In fact, one of Jack's friends asked me the other day after one such name calling slip-up, "Is your baby's name Jason Conner?" Yeah, no. No, it's not, I'm just confused. So anyways, it's hard to believe Jason is the big 3.

Jon and I snuck into Jason's room while he slept the night before his b'day, and decorated with balloons and streamers. It was so fun and it paid off. Jason was so enamored with it the next morning that he stayed in his room, content to stare at the party decorations, while I slept in. An awesome side effect, I won't lie. When I went in to his room that morning, he was so happy and exclaimed, "Mommy! There's a party!" He kept referring to the balloons thru out the house, as a party. So cute.

 So for his b'day breakfast he ate waffles soaked in butter and syrup and scrambled eggs, yum. We had put up balloons (including some tiger-striped ones, reminding him of one of his favorite t.v. characters Daniel Tiger) all over the house, and he just loved it and felt so special.

That night, when Jon came home from work and Mimi & Pappaw arrived, we took the boys to Red Robin's to celebrate. We enjoyed burgers, while Jason ate mac 'n' cheese and Jack had a grilled cheese sandwich, paired with chocolate milkshakes. When dinner wrapped up, the wait staff came by to sing to Jason, and he was delighted by all the attention.

After dinner, we came home to perhaps the best part of the day- PRESENTS! Jack eagerly helped Jason open his gifts, showing him just what to do. Jason got a cool new Mater tee, a speed boat with accompanying race cars for the bathtub, an airplane from Planes, and a lifelike Mater toy that talks and drives around, complete with rockets and machine gun attachments (courtesy of the grand Mimi).

 The day after Jason's b'day, Jack leapt off the school bus and ran inside the house, and proceeded to plead with Jason to play with the new Mater toy. Jason flipped back and forth between being gracious and sharing, and tyrannical and yelling NO! Drama ensued for a few days, until the luster of the new toy wore off some. Seriously, the drama.

For his b'day cake this year, I forewent the traditional cake route, instead opting for iced sugar cookie sandwiches. They were delish. (Our family's b'days are all in a 2 month cluster, so cake can get a bit tiring.)

 Conner was bound and determined to get himself some cookies too.

It was so fun to help Jason celebrate his b'day this year. He's at such a fun age for anticipating fun events, and getting giddy with excitement. It's contagious and I hope it sticks around for awhile. Happy Birthday to our ever-growing 3 year old boy!

And for the memory book- at Jason's annual check-up, he weighed in at 29 lbs (20th%) and measured 38.5 in (75th%). Long and skinny.

Friday, March 14, 2014

Christmas 2013

What better time is there to post about Christmas morning than when on the brink of Spring? Hopefully you agree with me, since this is our official post for Christmas 2013.

We didn't travel for the holidays this year, which was totally okay with me. My sisters and bro-in-law were in town, staying at my parents' house. So before our little family joined the rest of the fam at my parents' house, we had our own Christmas celebration at home with just the boys. They opened a few presents from me and Jon.

Jack got some Lightning McQueen slippers, while Jason got a Lightning McQueen pillow. They enjoyed racing their respective Lightning McQueen's around the house, "driving" the slippers and pillow around. Then they pretended to nap on top of their McQueen's, since one of them was an actual pillow; so Jack was fake snoring with his head on his slippers. So silly these boys.

Conner got a baby piano and some rolling balls to crawl after-
 Jon gave me a clock for our living room, and I surprised him with a cool gadgety flash light that practically talks. Sorry for the lack of pictures, they came out a bit blurry and then my videos wouldn't upload to blogger.

After our initial celebrations, we drove to my parents' house and had even more present opening, probably taking close to 2 hours. Seriously, my children want for nothing when it comes to their grandparents. But they're not that spoiled, the 2 hours wasn't solely devoted to them, the adults got plenty of gifts too. Eric had one of the best surprises that morning- an iPad Air! He didn't even ask for it, but was pretty excited opening that box.

Teri and Eric holding baby Conner
 Jack perfectly posing his new chic tie

 Jason getting Pappaw's help opening a remote control truck

Conner intrigued by his new octopus-

 Jack got a few artistic gifts this year since he's shown an interest in drawing and writing, this one present is a color by numbers concept, using different colored magnets to create pictures.
 And the biggest, top-secret present of the day, saved for last when all of the other presents were open, was...........

A police car power wheel!
 A present for both Jack and Jason, it has 2 seats (no fighting over it!), 2 speeds plus reverse, sirens, and walkie-talkie action. They LOVE it, as do I.
 Since we live in a cul-de-sac, Jack gets to drive it in the street around the circle, and we also take it up to the park. They are so cute in it, and Jack's actually a very skilled driver.

 Below Pictures Feature Each Boy Modeling Some of Their Presents:

 I'm not sure why Conner is sitting with his back to his toys, as if he's ignoring them, but it's sure funny!

Jason got some great wooden blocks with which to build, and there's his McQueen pillow-

Jason showing me his Dracula Mater. In case you hadn't picked up on it, my boys are Cars obsessed, especially with these specialty Mater toys where he dresses up as different characters. So Dracula Mater is one of his personas, among others like Astronaut Mater, Daredevil Mater, wrestling Mater, etc. They're really annoying to step on in the middle of the night!

 Jack tried to show me his new present- but got photobombed by Jason!
 Let's try that again. There you go- Jack's McQueen slippers.

 Jack pointing to the magnetic dog he constructed with one of Jason's toys

I almost forgot! My parents so generously gifted me and Jon with an elliptical machine! Yay!! We had both been thinking about getting some type of exercise equipment to help with getting in shape, and this was perfect. We've put it to good use, and I'm only a few lbs away from my pre-pregnancy weight. Just in time for my birthday shopping trip I'm planning soon!

Thursday, February 27, 2014

Gingerbread Houses

On Christmas Eve we held our first ever Gingerbread house making contest, and it was a blast.
We gathered at my parents' house, and my sisters Teri and Kristi,
and my new brother-in-law Eric were there. We used graham crackers for the construction of the houses, made royal icing and had bowls of varying candies for the decor. We divided into 4 teams: Team Newlywed (Teri & Eric), Team Kristi, Team Jerin, and Team Mimi & Jack. And can I just say? This was my 1st time ever, in my life, to construct a gingerbread house. Crafting is not my thing. But I honestly enjoyed it, perhaps it was the competition of the whole thing. Jon was the architect behind our build,
envisioning a pass-thru driveway and a chimney, while I filled in the details with the windows and a licorice driveway. Jack and Mimi won on the efficiency front. Their house was constructed in about half the time of everyone else's and no space was left untouched by Jack's watchful candy-decorating eye. Kristi had the most unique house, creating an open manger concept complete with a licorice bonfire. The newlyweds were perhaps the most ambitious with their build as they built their house 2-3 stories high with some opulent details. My mom joked that they overbuilt for their neighborhood, haha. When all was said and done, everyone's turned out great and so different! What a fun afternoon.

Can you pick out which house is whose??...

 [From left to right: Kristi, Jon/Erin, Mimi/Jack, Eric/Teri]

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Santa's Village

We had a wonderful holiday season in 2013, and I've been remiss in posting our pictures and stories. To kick-off our Christmas celebrations, we had Sunday dinner at my parents' house, with my sister Kristi visiting from the East Coast. Amusing anecdote- Aunt Kristi was so excited to see her awesome nephews, and upon greeting Jason she asked, "do you know who I am?" His response? "Aunt Teri!" HA! Aunt Teri would be my other sister not present at the moment. It was the big joke for the week that Jason kept insisting on calling Kristi, Aunt Teri, though he did finally acquiesce that she was in fact Kristi.

After we had our fill of food, those of us brave enough to face the winter chill (re: everyone except my parents, haha), loaded up in the van and visited Santa's Village. Santa's Village is an annual tradition here where the city puts together a miniature village in the "North Pole" for children to walk through, participate in festivities, and meet Santa Claus. It sure was frigid that night with the wind, but I'm so glad we went and experienced it with the kids.

They got to meet Clifford-
 Jason may have been a little reluctant to let a giant red-sized dog put his paws on him. (And after re-reading the sentence I just wrote, I can understand why!)

I wish I had gotten a better photo of the enormous lit tree they had there, but my camera phone is temperamental on its best day. Suffice it to say, there was a great big tree, lit up with strands and strands of lights. Kristi and I chased Jack and Jason round and round that tree, while dutiful Jon waited in line to see Santa. The boys cannot get enough of being chased. It's the funnest, most exciting game to them, and they just light up the second they sense you coming. So after about 40 minutes of chasing, taking pictures by reindeer, listening to live music, and waiting...
 ...and a few more chase take-downs by Aunt Kristi of this little runner who didn't want to wait in line to see Santa...
  ...we saw the Big Man himself- Santa Claus!

 The boys look a little dazed by it all, don't they?

Now it's Conner's turn to be dazed. Or is that terror?

Thursday, January 9, 2014

7 months old

Conner is 7 months old and life is full of new adventures for him. He learned to crawl around the time he hit the 6 month mark (army style), and mastered independent sitting at 7 months old. I gotta say, I love the sitting up. It's so nice not having a baby who falls over and flops around, but can sit up and play with toys. Another welcome development which accompanied the sitting was no more spit-up! Awesome, enough said.

 Now he's into pulling up on furniture, not cruising, just pulling up. He's not quite mastered the getting down part, however. He usually stares at the floor, really focusing on it for a few seconds, and then falls forward or backward and I pray there's no hard toy in the vicinity.

 He's also eating more food, including heaping amounts of rice cereal and pizza crust. Well, not so much the eating of pizza crust, per say, as the chomping on of pizza crust.

 He also learned his name about a week ago, and responds whenever someone calls to him. He loves his brothers and lights up when he sees one of them. He crawls to them and tries to get in on the action. They are pretty nice to him and enjoy his baby cuteness (hopefully that lasts once he enters his toddling stage).
Oh, and he got his first tooth. The bottom, middle tooth. It popped in about a month ago, I'd say he was 6 1/2 months old (for the baby book). I love me some baby Conner.