Wednesday, December 24, 2014

It's Christmas Time in the City!

Just a post of random Christmas goodness. 
Women's Group at the K-Love Christmas concert. It was a nice night out and Jeremy Camp was great! 

Heath so excited for his Christmas party at school! Cutie!
He made this adorable ornament for us! And it was wrapped so cutely! 
He also made these two cute ornaments as well...
 Our tree is looking very adorable and home made this year! 
But we are so glad that he knows that Jesus loves him! 

Nolan had a fun Winter Party at school too. As one of his Room Mom's I planned the party, but wasn't able to attend because it was in the afternoon and I was teaching. So Mark came to party instead. 
They read The Gingerbread Baby by Jan Brett. 

Then they played Pin the Button on the Gingerbread Baby. 

They decorated Gingerbread Baby's house and put a sparkly, foam Gingerbread Baby inside of it. 

They decorated Gingerbread Baby cookies. 

And played a dice rolling game to decorate a Gingerbread Boy with gum drops. 
Nolan even said he did a little dancing to some Christmas music. That kid- music makes him groove! Ha! He also said that they all had a fun time so I'm happy that my hours of prep paid off even though I wasn't there to witness it or help! 

Winter Break…ahhhh! It feels so good! Mark is off with us too, so we've been having a lot of fun, family time together! Dinner out at Chilis one night was just what we needed! Brooks LOVES the chips and salsa just like his Mommy & Daddy do! Toasting to a week off together! 

 We had beautiful weather this weekend. Perfect park days. 
We've finished up Christmas shopping and now just need to wrap! We've watched many Christmas movies…including a new family fav- Home Alone! It was a little scary for Heath and Brooks didn't really understand it, but Nolan laughed hysterically through the whole thing. Love that he is getting to an age where we can share fun things like this! And we've eaten our fair share of cookies- thanks to Cara's annual Cookie Exchange. And we still have 2 weeks to go! Gonna soak up every relaxing minute of it! 

Monday, December 22, 2014

Brooks Wesley is THREE!

Our baby, Brooks, is THREE. So…not really a baby anymore. Although, I think that we will always somewhat view him that way! He had a great birthday MONTH! His celebrations started way back in November, in Oklahoma.

 Grandma & Grandpa have a tradition of taking the boys to Build-a-Bear when they turn three. So we knew that we would have to go when we were in OKC for Uncle T.'s wedding because we wouldn't see them in December this year. We weren't really sure of what he'd think of it. He hadn't really played with stuffed animals much until literally a week or so before our trip. Funny thing, he started playing with Nolan's Build-a-Bear puppy, Fluffy, that week. He would sleep with him and cuddle him and bring him down to eat breakfast with him. It was so cute! So we were happy that he seemed to have some interest in a special animal friend. 
When we got to Build-a-Bear it took Brooks a L-O-N-G time to decide which animal he wanted. We set them all up on the edge of the bins for him to check out. 
He would look at each one and then say, "um…no" and put it back in the bin. 

For some reason he really LOVED this Santa. But we tried to steer him in other directions, thinking it would be better for him to pick an animal that he might enjoy for more than just one month of the year. 

We were all set to make this monkey when all of a sudden he changed his mind and chose a Bulldog puppy instead. 

Grandma helped him do all the work to build his new puppy. 

Once he was built it was time to give him a bath and a name…Rubble! Just like from Paw Patrol. 

He was SO happy with his new puppy and loooooooved the message that Grandma recorded inside of him. It's so fun for him to be able to hear Grandma's voice whenever he presses the button. Rubble has quickly become an honorary member of our family. He goes with us everywhere. He's always at the dinner table and often goes to Oma's house too. It's fun to see Brooks love this special pup so much! Thanks Grandma and Grandpa for making his birthday so special!  We love you! 

Brooks' actual birthday is December 17th. This year it fell on a Wednesday and a busy one at that. Volunteering in Nolan's classroom, teaching, and a Women's Group Christmas concert all fell on his big day. So we spread out his birthday festivities a bit. We set up his birthday chair the day before. 
A sports theme as usual…this year, we made sure to include some hockey…a new interest. 
The boys call Brooks, "Little Treasure", it started in Chicago a ways back and just stuck. It is so cute and funny and their way of including him in what they are playing. And he is just that…

Brooks was so excited to see his "presents, presents, mine". And earlier that day we went and picked out these cupcakes too. He picked out the rings that he wanted on top and he carried the box all the way through the store and in the car all the way home. He was so proud. 
He wanted the candles to go in the cupcake with the Avs sweater in it. 

So on Tuesday night, we started with a little dessert before dinner. He just couldn't wait. It was his birthday, so we went with it! 
You can just tell that he SHINES when there are moments ALL ABOUT HIM! 

His sweet, little, heart just soaks it all in. 

He loved his cupcakes and had blue lips to prove it! 

After dinner we treated the boys to dinner at the movies…on a school night! 
Pretty special. 

We went to our favorite AMC theater. 
Comfy seats and dinner brought right to you! The boys had pbj's and chicken fingers, Mark had a cheesesteak, and I had a wrap. French fries, pop, and fruit too! Reclining seat, feet rests, what more could you want at a movie! 

 We saw Penguins of Madagascar
It was cute and funny and perfect for three silly boys! 

The next morning we woke up and got the day started just like any other school day. But then we threw in a little present opening in there too! 
He woke up to a surprise that was not there the day before. A balance bike! 
Balance bikes weren't a big thing when we had Nolan, but they have become quite popular. So we thought we'd give one a whirl with Brooks. Because he's our third and we won't have any more children using the bike, we didn't want to splurge on a Strider. So we thought we'd try out a less expensive, but respected brand, Radio Flyer. So far he loves the bell and loves to be zoomed around on it, but hasn't really taken off independently on it yet. So we'll see how he likes it. Hopefully when we get outside on it he'll take to it. 

Then it was time to unwrap. 
This fun gift came all the way from Michigan. 

He was so surprised!
He loves his Miles Dream Light from the Sloothaaks! Thank you friends! We love you! 

His brothers picked out a set of Paw Patrol characters for him. He loves them. 

And we got him some batting gloves too! He always puts on some pretend gardening gloves when he plays baseball. He picked this up on his own by watching baseball on t.v. with Mark. So we thought he would LOVE to have some real batting gloves. We couldn't find any his size, so the ones we bought are a little big, but he loves them anyways! We needed to do some B.P. right away! 

After dropping Nolan off at school we made our way to Oma & Opa's house, where the boys would be for the day. 
Oma & Opa took Brooks to Starbucks to celebrate his birthday. He got to pick out a donut and they sang to him and he got to "blow out" his stir stick candles! He got a Paw Patrol shirt and $3 too! 
Such a fun celebration that they do for all their little boys! He loved it! Thanks for making his day Oma & Opa! 

That night while I was at the concert, he hung out with his daddy and brothers and played with all of his new toys. Auntie & Flobby also Skyped him and "gave" him this cupcake! 
I missed him so much that day. I did not like being away from my boy on his birthday! But I'm so thankful for all the people who loved and celebrated him that day! 

The next morning we got to celebrate him even more. 
Uncle T. and Auntie Laura sent a birthday package! 
Chase and Marshall! (and a cool Batman sweatshirt too!)
He is getting his fill of "stuffed" puppies since he will not be receiving a live one from Santa! Auntie and Flobby sent him one too! (But I didn't get a picture because we were Skyping while he was opening it.)
He even pulled up a chair for each of them for breakfast that morning. Thanks Uncle T. & Auntie Laura, TiTi, and Flobby for the thoughtful gifts! 

That morning while his brothers were at school, we got to spend some time, just Brooks and I. We practiced his bike inside the house,  played Paw Patrol, and hit balls. And I got lots of kisses. He's a good kisser that one. I better watch out when he's a teenager. 
This kid. He was quite the surprise. But the best surprise ever. He is sweet and charming and shy and funny and talking more every day. He is spunky, and feisty, and quiet. He loves balls and loves to laugh. He is love. (And potty trained…finally!!!! Ha!) My heart just overflows with with joy when I think of him. God really knew what he was doing when he gave Brooks to us. And we are so honored to be his parents. He truly is our Little Treasure!