Wednesday, November 23, 2011

My Broncos Boys

 I'm still coming to terms with the fact that I married an avid Broncos fan. ;)
And now.... sons are Broncos fans! But it's okay because they're wearing Tebow jerseys. How cute are they?!

 They were a bit distracted....

There was a football game on! :)

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

The Big O-N-E!

 Today, my baby turned one. ONE, people!! It's just not possible that it's been an entire year already.

 He's still this little, right??

Isaac Jayden (you get called that a bit more often these days......),
You are an absolute treasure!! Your personality is so fun, yet can be so serious. You observe...a lot. But at the same time, you're always there in the middle of all the action. Story of your life already! You talk quite a bit. You can say draw (druh) and desk (deh). Yes is VERY clear (and it's often said in questioning reply to my NO!). What a stinker you are! The other day, you crawled over to a desk Daddy had pulled into the TV room and said "Deh? Deh?!" So I put you up in the chair, gave you a piece of paper and a pencil and you said "Druh!!!" You LOVE to sit and scribble. There's no use trying to keep you in the sling while I teach school-even if both desks are full, you want down so you can draw! 
You are the fastest little crawler I have ever seen!!! My goodness you've got that snake/army slither/crawl down pat and you MOVE! You still don't crawl on your hands and knees very often. No walking yet, but you like to push your Thomas toy around. You think you're pretty big stuff when you do that! :)
Your sleep is the bane of my existence! Your nights are much better (I say this as you are in your crib crying instead of sleeping!), but your days? Not so much. As crazy as it is to me, there are days when you flat-out refuse to nap. It's partly my fault for not keeping you on a better schedule, but that gets a little tricky when some days are like today with all kinds of things going on here, there, and everywhere. Even with all that, you're still a pretty happy little guy.
I decided to make a special treat for your birthday today, even though we're celebrating your birthday in a couple weeks with extended family. I tried my hand at cake pops (seriously, these are not decorated...they're dipped in frosting!). I've got some practicing to do, but you didn't care what they looked like! :)

 Mama,what is this?? It doesn't look like my regular breakfast...

 It's so...GREEN. What are you tryin' to feed me??

 Are you sure it's good Anna?? I don't know.....

Hey, it's a treat! You're the best, Mama!!!!

Isaac, we love you more than words can express! I love how you scrunch up your nose when you're trying to be cute (as if you're not always cute! duh.). I love how you adore your brother and sister. I love how you launch yourself at Daddy when he comes home from work! I just love YOU! And I praise God that He put you in our family!

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Lessons Learned...

Some good friends of ours are in the process of adopting a precious baby girl from Ethiopia. They're getting ready to make their first trip over there. Stacy mentioned on their blog that they're going to take extra suitcases, filled with medicine and supplies for the orphanage. Aaron & I talked about donating some things and I thought it would be a good lesson for the kids (Anna for sure) to take them shopping for things to give Stacy & Christian to take with them. I asked Stacy what they needed and we headed to good ol' Dollar General. I explained to the kids what we were doing and why--what an orphanage is, why the kids are there, why they need us to get things for them, etc. I told them that Jesus commands us in the Bible to take care of the orphans. The biggest battle I have EVERY time we go to any store is the kids (especially Jacob, not always Anna) think they need to get a treat/toy. They were all on board, but Jacob kept saying that he was going to pick out a toy for "that boy". I explained to them that these kids don't have Mamas and Daddies to buy things for them and that they need clothes and shoes. To my surprise, both Anna and Jacob teared up. Anna said that made her really sad. We headed into the store and started picking out some shoes and clothes. Anna talked away about how much the kids would like their new clothes and shoes. The flip flops were on mega sale, so we literally loaded up the cart! :)
Not only did this teach my kids (at least Anna) a lesson on compassion and thankfulness, it reminded me to look outside my bubble of a world. I'm not going to be able to put into words what I want to was a good lesson for all of us and I was moved to see how much it affected Anna.

Lord, I pray that you continue to keep this precious girl's heart soft. I pray she never loses her gentle, caring spirit and that You mold her into a compassionate, loving, caring young woman who seeks Your face daily. As much as it hurts, continue to break her heart for Your lost and alone children. Thank You for putting Anna in this family and thank You for using her to remind me of Your compassion.

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Guitar songs...for Grandpa

-- Sent from my Palm Pixi

Weeee! Guess Who Loves the Slide?

Isaac has no fear. He's fallen off things more than the other 2 combined. He figured out a month ago how to climb up and down on boxes, chairs and couches. I shouldn't have been surprised that he was so adventurous at the park today. He wanted down right away and started climbing. Anna was climbing with him. He went right up to the slide and started to head down on his tummy, head first. He LOVED it! He zipped down and as soon as I picked him up (I caught him halfway down), he was grunting and reaching for more!!

Monday, November 7, 2011

Trick or Treat...Yeehaw...Choo...Moo...

Once again, Uncle Windell outfitted the kids for Halloween. Anna requested Jessie (from Toy Story). While we were shopping before Windell left, Jacob got to pick what he wanted from Toys-R-Us. I tried talking him into being Woody but once he saw Thomas, there was no changing his mind--until Anna's costume got her and he said "Where's my other costume? I wanna be Woody!"! Isaac didn't get a choice :)

 Anna had to get Graci dressed up, too! She even took her trick or treating with us. A couple weeks ago, she was talking about wanting an Itty Bitty Baby (the American Girl baby doll). I had told her before she got Graci that maybe she should get the baby instead, since she loves to play with her baby dolls. She hasn't really played very much with Graci since she got her (which I pointed out to her). She said "Well, I don't really know how to play with her. What am I supposed to do with her?" So I told her how to play with Graci (she does whatever you do) and now she's been playing with her.

Thomas and Jessie :) And yes, it was warm enough for Jacob to be wearing flip flops!!

 Anna was pretty excited that I gave her freckles, just like Jessie!

 Isaac was THE CUTEST little cow ever! :) I was surprised that he didn't hate the costume. He didn't even mind the hat. He just didn't want to stand there and pose for pictures!

 The ladies at Aaron's office spoil these kids every day (they ask the kids to come visit every day)! They're so sweet and the kids love them. I appreciate that they have crackers as well as candy :)

CUTE! We would be disowned if we didn't stop by the admissions office...

 Having a snack while we waited for Addie.

 What to eat, what to eat??

Always time to pose for Mama :)

Sunday, November 6, 2011

First Fieldtrip!

 Since the opportunities are vast, I decided to take advantage and have our first fieldtrip while we were in Iowa! There were many to choose from (although I was really sad to find out that we had missed Living History Farms by a week!), but I decided to do the Science Center of Iowa. Anna really likes science, so I figured they would enjoy this. I debated about going to an IMAX film, too but decided the day would be long enough for all of us (especially Isaac!) just doing the Science Center.

 We left around 10am and the first thing we see when we get inside is a place perfect for all three kids! Isaac had as much fun as the big kids!

 There was a great conveyer belt system and produce stand that Anna and Jacob loved playing with. (I hate that I just ended that sentence with a preposition!)

 Up, up, up they go!

 Anna loved sorting all the fruits and vegetables. She got a little math lesson in, too since each produce item had a price! :)

 Papa took an early (and long) lunch and joined us for a couple hours (that's who Isaac is looking at).

 There was even a bubble room!!

 This was Anna's 2nd favorite thing of the day. It was a system of water wheels. You were supposed to use the blocks to direct the flow of water toward the wheels and see how much electricity you could generate (there was a board that displayed the amount of power for each wheel). I don't think Anna really understood the concept of water flow, but she caught on to how I was using the blocks to direct the water flow. She had fun!

 Anna and I built this arc! 

 Isaac had fun exploring, too!

 This was Anna's favorite part of the whole place! There were plastic balls that you put in the baskets and they would shoot up and through and around. It was very interactive and the kids would have stayed there all day and played!

 Isaac liked the train table!

 He could barely reach, but that didn't stop him!

 We packed a picnic lunch (except it was much too cold to have an outside picnic!).

 Isaac did so good. He slept some of the time, but he was happy to ride around in the stroller and crawl around and play, too. Such a good boy!

 Every 30 minutes, there were presentations on different topics. We hit the chemistry session! Anna was excited that she knew what the lady was presenting (states of matter) since we had already studied that! She also got to volunteer and be a helper! cute are those safety glasses?! The experiment she helped with was changing a liquid to a solid. I was so surprised...I really didn't think she would want to stick her hand in the liquid and reach for the goo!

 But she dove right in and loved it!

Jacob got to volunteer, too! He was hilarious and those safety glasses just would not stay on his big ol' noggin. I'll have to upload the video of his experiment...

Iowa visit

It had been quite a while since we took a trip to Iowa, so after Isaac got the all clear from the doctor (he had bronchitis), we took off. I'm happy to say that the trip was much more successful than the last one! It still took us about 8 hours. And the low tire sensor came on about an hour before we got there! But I was able to stop in a couple miles at a gas station and air it up and it was fine.
The kids jumped right into the toys and playing :)

 Cowgirl Anna. "Stick 'em up!"

 Isaac just has to be in on ALL that big sis and big brother do! He loved riding around on the bike with Anna!!

 What's a trip to Iowa without going to Incredible Pizza?! Isaac even had fun playing.

 All the other times we've been here, Jacob hasn't wanted to actually play any of the car racing games. I think the Wii has changed that! He played several and actually does pretty good steering.

 Isaac thought the little carousel was so much fun!

 By the second ride, it was old hat.

 Isaac also LOVED riding the mower with Papa!! The noise didn't scare him at all. Unlike his brother...Jacob still won't ride it!

 When they expanded their front porch, they built around the Japanese Maple. So now it's a great climbing tree! :) Anna was actually pretty fearless about climbing it.

 Ugh...if I can just get my foot riiight there... where do I go??

 Maybe if I smile pretty and pose for a picture...

 Mama will let me climb onto the roof...maybe??

 I bet I could sweet talk Papa into it!

 Uhhh...Mama?I think I'm stuck...

  I love this girl. So much my heart hurts!

 If I had photoshop (and knew how to use it!) I could really make her beautiful blue eyes pop in this shot. :)

 Such a silly boy.

 Ohhh those blue eyes! What an ornery little squirt!!!

 He comes by it naturally!

 Like I said...Isaac has to be right there in the middle of it all. Literally!!

 This was about 2 seconds before Isaac chomped down on Papa's thumb!! HA! I think he forgot how many teeth Isaac has! It almost broke the skin!

 Papa replaced the timing belt on our van for us. Isaac was more than happy to help. I've noticed since we moved (and have had various tools laying around constantly) that Isaac really likes tools.

 Anna helped, too. :) Papa is so good about letting the kids "help" and giving them little jobs to do to make them feel included and spend time with him. Even though I know it makes the job go much slower! (Jacob was out helping, too...I guess I didn't catch him in the picture)

Here Papa, let me get that for you.