Wednesday, September 17

a birthday date with violet

I have had Violet's birthday date planned for a very long time.  The park and Steak and Shake.  The park because that is all she really cares about and it would be fun for us to watch her play and focus on just one little person.  Steak and Shake because about 3 years ago, Jason and I went there on a date to get coffee for him and a shake for me.  It was an extra special date because as we sat there, Jason let me know that he was fully on board with having a fourth baby.  I was beside myself with joy and cried a bit at his good news.  Of course, I knew it was coming because I know him well but wasn't sure when I would hear those beautiful words.  

We found out we were pregnant with this little lady very shortly after that date and I decided that day that we would one day take her to the same Steak and Shake where her story began... 

She had to bring Elmo with her of course.

She is her Daddy's girl.

She loves to rip out her bows randomly and take a ton of hair with it so I am constantly putting it back in and reminding her not to pull them out.

We took her to try out a new park after we ate lunch.  She loved this green slide so much.

On our way back to the car, there was a dog that caught her eye and she could not stop staring and talking about it.

Words cannot express the joy this little rascal brings to our lives.  I am so thankful that Jason decided he definitely wanted a fourth baby and so happy that Violet is that baby.

Tuesday, September 16

violet turns two

Our little rascal got super excited about her birthday this year.  I don't think she can really grasp what a birthday means at this point but we just kept talking to her about it all week so she caught on pretty quick that something special was happening and it was all about her.  So she said over and over, "My birthday's coming up, my birthday's coming up."  

We spent her birthday acting silly by giving ourselves "chubby cheeks"...

and playing with toys, of course.

I let the big kids ice the cupcakes for me during Violet's nap.  Don't they look great?

After nap time, we headed outside for a little snack.

We practiced holding up two fingers which is no easy feat for this little one.  She would get frustrated and fold up her hands and say, "I can't!"  But there were a few times she figured it out.

Her favorite food is probably pizza so we picked some up and brought it home for her birthday dinner.  She was so happy about this.

And then it was time for presents which she didn't realize come along with having a birthday.  She was so excited.  She got a fun puzzle and new bath squirty animals.

But her favorite gift was her little stuffed Elmo.  She really likes Elmo.  She hugged him right away and made sure to let everyone know that he was hers.

We are now proud parents of a 2, 4, 6, & 8 year old.  What?

Then it was cupcake time.  She just couldn't believe the joys of having a birthday.

No matter how hard she tried, she just could not blow those two candles out so she had some help from big sisters and brother.

We had some very sweet moments that day celebrating our baby girl. She was so very happy the whole day and you could just tell that she was feeling especially loved.  

Wednesday, September 3

she's in third grade

I can't believe we are the parents of a third grader.  What?!  That just doesn't seem right.  But sure enough it is.  When we went to look at the class lists about one week before school was starting, Avery was pretty bummed to learn that she had a male teacher, actually two of them since they are in teams this year.  It didn't take long to convince her that she would absolutely love having male teachers.  My 4th & 5th grade teachers were men and they were awesome.  We had SO much fun and kids just didn't mess around in those classrooms.  We learned a ton, had fun, and bullies were non-existent.  She was happy to hear my stories of that and decided that she was going to be happy about it.

This was the first time that I had nothing to do with her outfit and accessories for the first day of school.  She usually gives me something but not this time.  She is Miss Independent and I know that is a good thing.  

She was so excited to find that they have lockers this year.  They don't lock them or anything but basically use them as cubbies to store their backpacks, lunch bags, and coats.  Lock or no lock, using a locker is big stuff.

I had a hard time walking away.  I just kept taking pictures in an effort to make the drop off last a little longer.  I was in denial.  But our girl, as usual was crazy excited and more than ready to make her entrance into third grade.  I am so thankful that she embraces new experiences and does not shy away from them.  

And it turns out that her teachers really are awesome and she LOVES them.  The school year could not have started better.  These teachers give a reasonable amount of homework which makes my life and Avery's easier.  They are funny, nice, and caring.  We walked Avery to her classroom each day the first week and on the second day of school, her teacher came out when he saw us walk by (you can't miss me and my crew) and asked me how Avery liked her first day of third grade.  I told him she loved it and was super excited about everything when she came home.  He said, "She was happy as a lark all day.  She did great.  She's a neat kid."  We have heard that from teachers before and of course we are already well aware of that fact but it is always fun to hear.

Friday, August 29

five for friday

1. Mia loves to change Violet's diapers which is just awesome.  She switches into serious big girl mode and wants to do every bit of it herself with no help from Mommy.  And surprisingly, Violet cooperates for her.

2. Avery was going down the stairs the other day and noticed that the blanket was left on the floor and she thought it looked like a horse.  She asked me to take a picture of her riding the blanket horse.

3. This is what ornery looks like.

4. I love it when Violet hugs people's legs.  She actually does it quite a bit.  I guess it is kind of her thing.  It's awesome to be the recipient of one.

5. Mia is constantly performing.  She sings and dances all the time.  My favorite is when she sings as a commentary to what we are doing.  It's kind of a talk/sing that lets the world know what she is up to at the moment.  Love our Mimi.


Tuesday, August 26

dear mia...

Dear Mia Grace,

You turned four a month ago even though I asked you not to.  You keep getting more awesome though so I am going to let this one slide.  You never remember your new age and are constantly asking me how old you are.  You have cried several different days about turning four.  You loved all the birthday celebrating but when it was over, you wanted to be three again.  I can feel your pain.

Right now, you have moments when you act much older than you really are and other moments when you revert back to being a baby and just want to be held by Mommy.  You take care of Violet one minute and the next minute, you are fighting her for a spot on Mommy's lap.  You are such a happy girl unless you are tired and then everyone is scared of you.  You still fall asleep almost anytime we are in the car after noon and then you won't fall asleep until at least 9:30 at night.

You have been called "precocious" and it definitely fits.  You make your rounds at the swimming pool befriending all the mothers.  You are not afraid to talk to anyone and are usually full of compliments for others. You make people smile a lot.

You end up in Mommy & Daddy's bed most nights.  You say our bed is more comfortable and you sleep better in it.  I am so tired when you show up at my side of the bed and we don't even say a word.  We have a routine. I toss you into the middle of the bed, give you a kiss, and roll over to go back to sleep.  Daddy takes you back to your own bed occasionally when your teeth grinding keeps us awake but we know this won't last forever so mostly we just enjoy having our little package in bed with us.

You love to twirl, sing, dance, and tell stories.  You did surprise me by informing me the day before I was going to sign you up for ballet class that you want to do gymnastics instead.  You are always full of surprises.  So we decided to wait a year and give you a little time to make up your mind.

You only want to wear dresses or underwear.  You wear only underwear to bed every night and won't use covers.

 We were visiting Grandma last weekend and you love it there because Aunt Debbie and Great Grandma also live there.  We got home from church and then Aunt Debbie left to attend the second service.  You went to Great Grandma's side right away and didn't leave it. You took her hand and told her you would help her go potty.  You stayed by her talking and playing and when Aunt Debbie got back home, you said, "I took care of Grandma while you were gone."  You are the sweetest little thing and such a blessing.  

We started preschool at home last week and it's been interesting so far.  You love it but you have your own ideas for how it should be done.  I love that we have precious time, just the two of us while the big kids are at school and Violet takes her nap.  I am so thankful you are a summer baby because I have a good excuse for keeping you at home with me another year.

Thank you, Mia Grace for being an amazing daughter and helping me to be a better Mommy.  You like to say, "I love you more than you love me" and then run away giggling because you know I am going to come tickle you for saying something so crazy.  That will just never be true,  you will understand one day when you become a Momma.

Happy 4th Birthday, Mia Grace.

I love you WAY more than you love me.