Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Birthdays and Leaves

The leaves are officially off our tree but when they were at their height they were beautiful and the kids (the older two at least) LOVED playing in them!  Sad to see them gone already!
 
Last weekend we had Little Lady and Chunky Monkey's birthdays and invited all the church nursery workers.  Here was their letter inside the invitation. . .
 
No Gifts Please
We want this party to be a celebration of Little Lady and Chunky Monkey's birthdays, but we also want to use it as a thank you to you for your faithful service in the church nursery.
Thank you for opening your hearts and arms to these foster children. You have willingly come along beside us in this ministry and we thank you so much for loving these kids and becoming “attached” the way we do. You start loving on them the day we bring them to church and you graciously let them go when the time comes and open your arms to whatever is next. We are truly grateful for your love and want to honor you in this special day as well.
 
From that letter we had 25 people at a party to honor them and the kiddos.  It was so nice to be able to have them all here and thank them for their service, but also to have some of the people closest to these kids there for their special day.  Little Lady had a butterfly party in her party room . . . complete with cake made by my extremely talented aunt.  She was beyond excited to have her own party and kept saying, "my birthday! my birthday cake! MY party . . . "  I am so very glad we did this!!!


 
 
Then in the sunroom we had Chunky Monkey's party room with first birthday turtles!  Again, so thankful to my aunt for the adorable cake!!  It truly warmed my heart to see the kids at the heads of each table and the tables filled with people that love them and care for them for now fully knowing that we don't know what tomorrow will bring for them.  When we signed up for this ministry I don't think we fully understood how many people we would "drag" into it with us . . . what an amazing blessing these workers are to us as a family. 


 
Although we asked for no gifts, we did get the kids gifts from us (and some of the guests disobeyed the rules . . . LOL)

 
Thank you so much to my mom and Tim who helped tremendously getting everything ready for this party and helping cook for 25 people.  Thanks to my aunt for making the cakes and thanks to everyone that came to celebrate these two gifts we have right now.  Truly a blessing to us that you came.
 
 
random picture having nothing to do with birthday  . . . this was our night the other night.  First fire in the fireplace for the year and some mega blocks building as a family!

Friday, November 1, 2013

Columbus and Boo at the Zoo

This past weekend we took our annual trip to Boo at the Zoo and had a blast with our friends Chris and Lia.  We were so grateful for them giving up their weekend, their home, and their beds to us.  Thanks Chris, Lia and Emma.

Friday night they took us to an open gym at a gymnastics place.  Emma is quite the little gymnast and wanted to introduce our kiddos to it as well . . . unfortunately, Andrew refused to try any of it.  Although there were other boys his age he was very intimidated by the entire thing and preferred to sit with Tim and Chris and watch.  Little lady, however, loved every bit of it.  The kids were allowed to just run around and try all the apparatus at their own pace.  She loved the bars and trampoline the best . . . I was impressed with her on the balance beam and rings!  Perhaps she is a gymnast after all . . . definitely fearless!  Emma was quite impressive and even knew how to fall gracefully.  LOL


 
Bedtime story time with Chris . . . Emma, thanks for giving up your bed!

 
Saturday was Boo at the Zoo!  One of my personal favorite events of the year.  I just love all the kids in costumes, the animals with their pumpkins, the zoo all decorated . . . just really fun.  The zoo is one thing I would LOVE to do all the time if we lived closer.  I am NOT a household animal lover but I do love the zoo!  Chris and Emma in their costumes.  I am a pretty big fan of the fact that Emma is becoming as big a purple lover as I am, girl after my own heart!

 
Little lady the elephant (happened to be a costume we already had but the girl LOVES elephants so she wasn't too upset about wearing it)  Her choice was a princess dress but it was just too cold to wear it.  Andrew once again went as a police officer . . . his choices were all bad guys so this was our compromise.



 
Chunky Monkey was a Tiger (Tigger to be exact).  He did not mind his costume at all and in fact seemed to really like it.  He had had a bad night sleeping in an unfamiliar place but was a real trooper at the zoo.

 
We had talked and talked to Little Lady about the Elephants and she was so excited to see one in real life. It's the first animal she points out in all her books and with her speech teacher it's the first one she wants to talk about.  Even better that it was feeding time and they brought them right up to the window.  Such beautiful animals and I think so majestic and kingly.

 
Then it was a rush home for trick or treat in our neighborhood.  We had over 200 kids stop by this year!  Andrew really enjoyed it this year (although did pick a fireman costume for this event) but Little Lady only made it to the neighbors houses before she was cranky and just wanted to go home.  She spent the rest of the evening laying on the couch watching a movie--poor girl was exhausted.  Too much fun for one day!  ;-)


Thank you so much to Chris and Lia for hosting us for the weekend and putting up with all of us (and the mess we left behind--sorry).  We had a great time and so enjoy even 24 hours with our best friends . . . we will take what we can get!