Friday, September 11, 2015

We All Fall Down

The trampoline is my go-to tool when the boys need to burn off the last bit of energy before bed. Last night these three held hands and sang "Ring Around the Rosie" and giggled every time they got to the "we all fall down" part.

Max is 7!

Max is a dream son. As a baby he was always content, always happy, very laid back, and stayed put. I remember being able to take Max with me on my visiting teaching appointments and he would sit on my lap, happy to just be held, never attempting to wonder off or stray--I always took credit for his mellow behavior, but I know now it's just his personality. Max is a natural athlete and seems to do well with any sport he picks up, but he seems most adept at baseball. He's not aggressive by nature, but he doesn't mind busting through a soccer jam with a few elbows. Max takes great care of his little brothers and has a special bond with Joey. Max is thoughtful, kind, and quick to ask forgiveness if he has been in trouble. He makes friends easily and is one of those kids that is cool, but makes it seem effortless. Max loves to play catch, likes nerf guns, playing with friends, and could be a video game junkie if we owned video games (he loves to play on the iPad and play video games at friends' houses). Max is a carnivore like his dad and turns out his nose at most vegetables; his favorites are steak, bacon, hot dogs, and pizza. Max has the combination of a tender heart and a winning personality--big things are in store for this handsome 7 year old.

Max has had his birthday planned out for the past 364 days, complete with a written list of the order of events he wanted to do each activity at the fun center, who he planned to invite to his party, and gifts he was asking for.

I'd say 4 hours of arcades, go-carts, miniature golf, lazer tag, bumper boats, and batting cages is any 7 year old's idea of a dream birthday party. 

Happy Birthday to my Maxi-pie!

Workout Buddies

I can't justify the time or money to buy a gym membership and dump my kids off in the dirty daycare while I workout, yet I have set fitness goals for myself that require me to exercise regularly. So, for the past year and a half, this is where the boys have spent a fair amount of their time: running amuck in the church gym with their buddies while I pound out a quick workout with the ladies from church. It lacks in equipment and I occasionally have to pause my workout to break up a fight, chase a kid down from the pulpit, or change a messy diaper, but, you can't beat the price and convenience and I don't have to bother with grimy childcare.

Rough Start

I was a little caught off guard when, after wearing his shin guards and carrying around his water bottle all morning in anticipation for his first soccer practice, Joey refused to get out of the car and went wet-noodle on me when I tried to drag him to the field. After my attempts to both threaten and bribe failed, I just let him sit on the sidelines and sulk. I'm not sure if it was first day jitters, if he wasn't feeling well, or what, but Joey wouldn't set foot onto the field and wanted nothing to do with a soccer ball. He looked so pathetic I almost felt sorry for him, but that little boy can be so stubborn I feel like burying my head in my hands, too!

I guess he worked out whatever was holding him back, because his second practice was much better than the first. He kicked the ball, ran the drills, and had a great time!

Starting 5

It's become a family tradition to pick out BYU shirts from the bookstore every fall to wear on game day to support our alma matter. It's always fun to root for the Cougars, but THIS is the real team that I am cheering for:

Wednesday, September 9, 2015

Mad Max (nickname chosen by Max)

I'm pretty sure I already posted about this, but I wouldn't be doing my blog justice if I didn't include a picture of Max all done up in his baseball uniform. Max is a great little slugger, has a strong arm, and spits sunflower seeds like a pro. Now that he's playing kid-pitch, Max has had to learn how to judge a strike from a ball. Coming from machine pitch where every ball is a strike, Max has struggled to decide when he should swing and when he should wait for a better pitch. During a quick coaching moment, Aaron advised Max to swing if the ball was pitched in the strike zone. Realizing that the majority of his teammates were walked, Max replied, "I don't want to swing, I want to get on base!"

Birthday Fit For A King

I start pressing Aaron for input on his birthday festivities months ahead of his birthday, but he never offers any suggestions beyond asking for brownies and icecream or a card from the kids. He may act all humble, but I know that Aaron secretly wants me to go over the top and make a big deal over his birthday. And, since Aaron is a pretty big deal, I kind of like the chance to spoil him with the special treatment. So, I didn't hold back. We booked a room at the Waldorf in Park City, ate birthday dinner at Ruth's Chris, went to a movie in a theater all to ourselves, woke up to a room service breakfast, and golfed at a course set atop the mountains. 

Aaron is my one and only and I relished the time to celebrate him. Happy day to you, Aaron!

Last Hurrah

We recently rediscovered some old video footage and about died seeing how little the boys used to be and resolved anew to take more pictures and videos. They're never looking the same direction and their facial expressions are odd, but the photo is priceless because it's the only way that I can freeze those five boys, sitting together in their swim suits and splashing in the overspray of the water slide, to keep forever. 

Rocky Talky

Things Rocky Says:

- "bayntee" (blankie)
- "Hayntee" (Hanky)
- "worst dad (mom) eber!"
- "tiss" (kiss)
- favorite song!
- owhide (outside)
- see Dad! (said first thing in the morning)
- "doing mom?" (What are you doing?)

Rocky is quite verbal for his age and I'm loving watching his little personality develop. 

While the brothers are away...

It's all fair game when big brothers go to school.


I have to remind myself that he's only starting kindergarten, because I have literally been stressing about this day for the past two years! Will he be able to keep up? Will the other kids be nice to him? Will he like it? Will it be the right fit? I made a big stink (a nice way of saying I filed a 100+ page brief detailing how Ben's right to be educated with his peers was protected under federal legislation...interestingly, the committee decided to see things my way after all;) with the school district to have Ben placed in a general education classroom, with a dedicated aide, so I felt like there was a lot riding on this transition. I also felt the magnitude of the milestone that Ben was crossing--countless hours of therapy, treatment, tutoring, and homework  all lead up to this accomplishment...kindergarten! It was a big day!

Ben came home from his first day all smiles! The next day, when I was getting him dressed, he asked where we were going. When I told him he was going to kindergarten he asked, "again?!" With so much emphasis placed on that first day--new outfit, new backpack, new supplies, big breakfast, photoshoot), it's no wonder he thought kindergarten was a one-time event. 

When Ben comes home, I love to hear about his day. He struggles to communicate all of the details, so I have to fill in some of the gaps. One morning, I challenged Ben to ask his kindergarten friends what their names were so that he could report to me who he sat next to and who he played with. Ben, with his obedient little heart, felt conflicted and said, "Mom, if I talk, my teacher will write down my name!" I love that Ben always tries to obey.

I don't know what is in store for Ben down the road, but I'm so proud of how far he's come and how hard he's worked to get to this point.