Thursday, December 3, 2015

A Cute Mary Photo Dump

Mary hasn't been featured in many of the recent blogs, so I thought I would include a few collages of her in all her cuteness.  I don't know if I mentioned her recent walking milestone in a previous blog, so now's a great time!  Mary took her first 2 steps on October 18th, and then another 3 steps on the 21st.  On October 23rd she took 12 steps from the middle of the living room to the couch.  A day or two after that she was officially walking as her primary mode of transportation.  Now she just kind of wanders around the house following everyone around and grabbing toys.

This is not related to Mary, but I just have to share it.  It's kind of an unofficial milestone in a way.  Jack decided that he wanted to put up a sign on his door to tell Owen and Mary not to come into his room.  It says "Do not come in my room or bed   -Jackson."  I guess 5 years old is when you become territorial against your siblings :).
Now I'm caught up for Christmas preparation and the holiday!

Thanksgiving with Family

We had a really great Thanksgiving with family again this year.  It's the second year in a row we've hosted anyone in the family who is able to make it out to Oklahoma.  Grandma and Grandpa Brink arrived first, and they had the opportunity to do a little belated birthday celebration for the boys.  They gave the boys fishing poles and walkie talkies, and both boys were super excited.
 After presents we went to a local bakery to have birthday donuts.  Even Mary got in on the celebration.
Auntie Amy and Grammy and Grampy Nichols arrived two days later, and we had a really relaxing time with some small outings and a lot of food.  Auntie Amy got juggling balls for Jack, but Owen definitely seemed the most interested in them.  He kept talking about how good he is at 'ruggling.'

One of our little adventures was to take the fishing poles on a test run at our neighborhood lake.

Grampy Nichols used his fish whisperer skills and helped both boys catch their first fish ever.

You couldn't ask for a better fishing day than to have both boys get their own fish reeling experience.

Later in the week, on a cold, rainy day, Grandma and Grandpa Brink took the boys to the local bowling alley/arcade to play arcade games.
The boys are obsessed with this place and love to play ski ball, whack a mole, etc.  Mary didn't go, but she got a welcome home picture with Grandma.

We attempted to get a picture of the boys with the Grandpas before they headed out, but Jack was not a willing participant.  He's been very hard to photograph recently.
Then we tried the kids with the Grandmas.
And the Grandmas and Auntie Amy.
Auntie Amy stayed a few days after the grandparents left.  She was kind enough to watch the kids one night while Jonathan and I went to dinner by ourselves.  We tried to get a picture of Auntie Amy and the kids her last night with us, but Owen decided he didn't want to participate this time.
We had such a great time, and we were sad to see everyone go.  

Owen's 3rd Birthday!

Owen turned 3 on the 20th, and we started the day off with a special birthday donut.  After dropping Jack off at school we stopped by a donut shop that makes decorated donuts.  Owen chose a snowman, because he said it was cold outside.  He inhaled this donut!
When we went to the store to get cupcakes for his preschool class he decided he wanted to get M&M cookies instead.  He brought them to school on the 19th since he didn't have school on his actual birthday.  He was so excited to bring these to school, and it was so fun to see him as excited as he was.  On the way to school he was holding his cookies and said, "my friends gonna love me.  My friends be so happy.  I give them hug.  Ms. Megan said I can give hugs."  When I dropped him off, all of the kids were sitting on the floor and he was standing in the middle of them just holding his cookies…so sweet.
In the evening we had our own family birthday party for Owen where we had cupcakes and gave him presents from us.
This is not related to his birthday, but it's been so fun seeing all of the crafts that Owen brings home from school.  He has really adjusted to school, and he talks about his friends and how much he loves painting.  Here are a couple of his adorable crafts from the past two weeks.
We also went to MOPS a couple of weeks ago, and they painted and stuck popcorn to the paint.  He was so excited about his craft, and he carefully carried it out to the car talking about how much he loved painting.

I did a birthday survey with Owen as well this year.

Owen's 3rd birthday survey:
1. What is your favorite color? Blue
2. What is your favorite toy? Monster Truck toy
3. What is your favorite fruit? Pear
4. What is your favorite show? Monster Truck one Blaze and the Monster Machines
5. What is your favorite lunch? Apples and Carrots
6. What is your favorite outfit? Blue Jacket  I don't know what he's talking about.  I don't even think he has a blue jacket.  I do know that he does NOT like jeans or shirts where the sleeves are too long :)
7. What is your favorite game? Sneaky Snacky Squirrel game
8. What is your favorite snack? Larabar
9. What is your favorite animal? Cow
10. What is your favorite song? Monster Truck song I don't know what he means, but he's just obsessed with anything monster truck
11. What is your favorite book? Batman one I also don't know what he means on this one.  He actually likes an book involving transportation vehicles
12. Who is your best friend? Beckham a boy in his class
13. What is your favorite breakfast? Bananas and Bagels
14. What is your favorite thing to do outside? Scooting His scooter
15. What is your favorite drink? Juice He specified Apple Juice
16. What is your favorite holiday? Christmas
17. What do you bring to bed with you? Blankies- Tiny one and Big one He has small soothing blankies and large blankets from Aden and Anais that he is still very attached to
18. What are you good at? Scooting
19. What do you want for dinner on your birthday? Cupcakes
20. What do you want to be when you grow up? Big Enough.  Hammering Job He said he wants to do a job where he gets to "fix stuff."

Friday, November 20, 2015

The Boys' Birthday Party

This is the first time we've ever done a birthday party for either of the boys, and we decided to do a joint birthday party with their closest friends.  Jack had three friends his age, and Owen had two friends his age at the party.  I decided to do a camping theme for the party since the boys recently had a great time at a cook out we attended where they had a fire pit.  I had the idea to make a tree out of streamers and balloons, but every store I went to was out of brown streamers.  Jonathan executed a great tree over the table with brown paper and green balloons.  We covered the table in a table cloth, and we grilled hot dogs and hamburgers for lunch.  
In addition to grilling, we had veggies with hummus, apple slices, ants on a log, pretzels, and lemonade.
I found this little bakery called Cookiedoodle in downtown Jenks to do the desserts.  I got little cookies shaped like bears, a cake with a campfire decoration on top, and s'more flavored cake pops.  I made goodie bags with a take home s'more kit, a mini flashlight, a pencil that looked like a stick, and a couple of bugs.
I was wanting to do a piñata since Jack loves pinatas, but I couldn't find one that really fit the theme of the party.  I made a last minute trip to Target, and I found this hamburger piñata!  I regret we didn't get any pictures of the boys hitting the piñata, but it was the highlight of the party.  Jonathan cut a broomstick in half, and we hung it from a tree in the backyard.  I was afraid the boys were a little too young to actually break it, but they got it!  Each boy got 3 hits, and it only took one round of turns for it to break open.  Jackson had the chance to deliver the final blow after it cracked open since it was his  birthday :).
We opened presents after the piñata, and the boys got some really fun gifts.

And we ended the party with cake.  Jackson blew out the candles before we even finished singing Happy Birthday.  I think he was trying to beat Owen to the punch.

Here's one of my favorite pictures from the party.  This is one of Jackson's two best friends at school…it's so cute watching him develop friendships.
Both boys had a great time, and they keep asking to invite their friends over again.

Jackson's 5th Birthday…What?!

I can't believe that Jackson is 5!  It just does not feel like that long ago we were in Colorado holding our new little baby.  Here's a picture of us after his birthday party.
Jackson's big birthday present was a new bike.  We got it for him a couple of weeks ago, because we wanted him to have enough time to ride it before the weather gets too cold.  He and Jonathan have gone on a couple bike rides around the neighborhood together, and Jack decided he was ready to have the training wheels taken off.  Jonathan got him going, and he took off on his own on his first try!  All that time on the balance bike paid off I guess.  He still has trouble getting on and off himself, but he's doing really well.
Jackson's favorite stuffed animal is his white dog, but he has been asking over and over again for a rainbow dog.  I have no idea where he got the idea from, but I found one on Amazon.  He LOVES this dog, and his white dog has taken a back seat to rainbow dog.  
Grammy and Grampy Nichols sent a Jake and the Neverland Pirates lego set, and Jackson has built it several times already. 
His birthday celebration will continue next week when family comes in town for Thanksgiving.  Grandma and Grandpa Brink and Auntie Amy have some presents for him too :).

Jackson took cupcakes to school on Friday, November 13th to celebrate his birthday with his class.

I wanted to include this even though it's not related to his birthday.  He had his first homework project from school last week, and he just looked so big working on it.  He did a great job with scissors and adding personal artwork touches to the project.
I did my annual survey with him again.  I think next year I may need to shorten it up a bit, because he wasn't as interested in answering so many questions this year.  It took me two tries to get all of the answers.

Jackson's 5-year old Survey:
1. What is your favorite color? Green
2. What is your favorite toy? Lego Jake and the Neverland Pirates and Shark Truck
3. What is your favorite fruit? Apples, Bananas, and Pear
4. What is your favorite show? Jake and the Neverland Pirates
5. What is your favorite lunch? Peanut Butter Almond Butter and Jelly Sandwich, Pretzels, Turkey Roll-ups, Carrots, Olives, and Jelly Beans
6. What is your favorite outfit? Waving Bear Shirt
7. What is your favorite game? Angry Birds on the TV Roku
8. What is your favorite snack?  Chocolate Chip Banana I put a chocolate chip face on a banana for Halloween, and he loved it
9. What is your favorite animal? Penguin
10. What is your favorite song? Robot Song a song that comes on Apple Kids Radio sometimes
11. What is your favorite book? Dinosaur Book 3D dino pop-up book
12. Who is your best friend? Callen and Jackson S. in his class
13. What is your favorite breakfast? Pancakes
14. What is your favorite thing to do outside? Ride my bike
15. What is your favorite drink? Icee
16. What is your favorite holiday? Halloween
17. What do you bring to bed with you? Rainbow little dog and little dog white dog
18. What are you good at? Making a monster on paper and playing zombie game he likes drawing pictures of monsters, and he plays Plants vs. Zombies on the iPad
19. What do you want for dinner on your birthday? Cake and Hamburger
20. What do you want to be when you grow up? Doctor

Happy Halloween

We had a fun, low-key Halloween this year.  Mary got to wear an adorable Halloween outfit all day, and I made Halloween-themed lunches for the boys.  Jonathan also carved pumpkins with Jackson and Owen.  We did a little bit of decorating around the house.  We hung some purple spiders in the front of the house and had a ghost hanging on our front door.  We decorated the mantel with Halloween crafts the boys had done and some zombies we found at Michael's craft store.
Jack wanted to be a cowboy this year, and he was super cute.  He has some cowboy boots, but he hadn't worn them in a while.  When he tried to put them on they were way too tight.  A little disappointing, but he still loved his costume.
Owen wanted to be a pirate, and he loved it!  His costume was a one-piece bodysuit that looked adorable.  I'm thankful that it was warm enough for him to be able to wear it.
Mary was a strawberry, and she was incredibly tolerant of the hood.  She was so animated and smiley in her costume like she knew how cute she looked.
Here's the whole crew together before heading out the door.
 Here's a few other random pictures of our evening.
We still get to do a short trick-or-treating adventure without the boys fighting to stay out longer.  We went around the block and called it good.  We didn't want to have too much candy in the house, and the boys wanted to go back and watch a movie while eating a couple pieces of their candy.  Another successful Halloween in the books.