May 26, 2012

Age ain't nothin' but a number

And that number is six! K turned six yesterday! I can't say "I can't believe I have a six-year-old" because I can believe it. I think I've felt every one of those years. And he certainly acts and looks so much older.

From age four to five he made the transition from baby to little boy. He went from this:
To this:
Hard to believe there is only a one year difference between these photos, isn't it?!?! I felt like I was literally watching him grow up. It seemed like I could actually see a day to day difference in him. Most of that baby fat was gone and he became mostly arms and legs.

From five to six, it has been a process of little boy to all boy. The all arms and legs thing was joined with a shooting up and thinning out that would almost be alarming if I didn't know that that's what happens when you grow up. I was quite the bean pole in my day, too. K is SO skinny now, and almost all of that plumpness of cheek is gone. I can't find any good recent pictures right now to evidence theses changes, but I'll have plenty after his birthday party on Monday.

So, after six years, three states, five different homes, one broken arm, one minor surgery, one cavity, countless testings of our patience, and countless more instances of his sweetness and intelligence, our little boy is healthy, fun and growing into the boy he's supposed to be! Happy Birthday to my eldest!

May 9, 2012

Dinosaur 2nd Birthday

Welcoming people to his party. :)

S is very into animals, including dinosaurs. I wasn't totally sure what basic theme to do this year, but K decided for me the week before the party. He thought dinosaurs was best! Since we have lots of dinosaurs between the two boys, and I figured it wouldn't be too hard to find party stuff at the store, it was a go.

At the party store I found plates, napkins and a few other things. The only other thing I bought, apart from the paper goods, was dinosaur tattoos. With my two boys and my 2 1/2 year old nephew as the only kids at the party, I knew they'd be really into tattoos!

My approach to kid parties has been to do a big family party for the first one, small family parties for ages 2-3 and then a bigger party with friends for 4 and up. So, this party was the four of us, my parents, my sisters, my nephew and my grandma. The other grandparents and aunts and uncles are out of state, so unfortunately, they weren't at this one.

Since this was a smaller party and since I've been very tired and overwhelmed lately, I didn't put a ton of effort into this one. But it was perfect for S and a fun time none-the-less.

K helped me decorate with the dinosaur toys we already had. He put them everywhere he could think of! I just had to explain to him when he got upset that putting toys where S or his cousin could reach them meant that they wouldn't stay where he put them! K had some fights with his brother at first, and kept trying to explain why S couldn't play with his own toys, but then he gave up on that useless task.

Well-read dinosaur. He conquered the book mountain!

Dinos in all forms: Rex from Toy Story, sand filled one, little dollar store ones,

wax one from the zoo,

more small ones and a dinosaur skeleton to keep the presents company.

In our family, there are some non-cake eaters. I know, I know! Craziness! Blasphemy! But I still need to make sure to have some kind of dessert for the non-cake people. This year I decided to make chocolate chip cookies, since they are a general crowed pleaser. Due to laziness/tiredness, I then decided I ONLY wanted to make the cookies. So I bought two colored tubes of frosting, plus I had a clearance tub of peppermint frosting in the cabinet. I made about half of the cookies larger size and we just decorated them ourselves! I frosted S's and put a "2" candle on it so we could sing happy birthday. Everyone else did the work themselves. We had ice cream too, and I barely had to do anything! The benefit of laziness!

Most of the present opening is three kids, surrounding me and the presents. Not easy to get pictures!

He got more dinosaurs and animals. Each toy had to be played with as soon as it was opened, of course!

Birthdays can be emotional.

That's a sticker on his forehead, and he had to try out his new swim ring right away!

So, we made it through another birthday party! The kids had fun and S is still loving all his new toys.

Baby's not baby anymore

My boy is two! April 21st marked two whirlwind years of S as the littlest member of our family. He has been such a fun addition to our lives and has an absolutely adorable personality (And face. And laugh. And everything else, but I'm biased). His humor and imagination, voice and expressions, and even his propensity for high drama in almost every situation are all a blessing to us.

He was my do-over, in a sense, because with his birth and early baby years I got a chance to experience things I missed the first time around due to K's more difficult and frustrating entrance into the world. S healed a lot of emotional wounds for me. But beyond my personal feelings, it has been fascinating to see how different another boy made by the same two parents can be so different! He has different elements of James and I, and then his own set of personality traits.

Unfortunately, S is hitting two HARD! So many tantrums, meltdowns, hitting, throwing, crying, etc, et al. Every new thing needs to be explored/climbed/dismantled/tasted/thrown. Books have been drawn on and ripped apart. Rooms are destroyed in nanoseconds. If his wishes aren't immediately granted, at home or in public, oh the crying and hitting that ensues! Those storms of emotion are so crazy to watch in little kids.

Thankfully he is still, through all of that, a more mellow type of kid. He still needs some time each day to just sit with us or K and watch TV. When he wakes up from a nap or in the morning, he will play in there for at least a few minutes before calling for us. Sometimes, he asks to be put in the crib so he can just have some chill time by himself. He often plays by himself! K still isn't very good with that. I love that S can go off to his room, or grab a few toys and come up with something to do. Listening or watching what he comes up with is a blast, too.

So, my baby is two. And I am happy about it. I really do love that they grow up. I enjoyed the baby years, but I love each phase of independence that follows. Here's to a wonderful third year!