Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Birthday Day at the Zoo

Monday for Riley's actual birthday, we went to the zoo. It is funny, how Riley is beginning to get bored of the zoo just as Alex is beginning to get really excited about all the animals. This was the last Monday for the zoo members appreciation which meant that we got to get into the zoo one hour early. In the blistering Texas sun, getting in at 9 instead of 10 is a BIG deal!
They also have different trainers out and about early with animals for the kids to see up close. This was some kind of a shepherd dog, but I don't remember what she said. It was just funny because we didn't expect to see a dog at the zoo. Plus I have never seen a dog that looked like this one!
As always my favorite is the beautiful white tiger!

Then it was time to feed the birds. They were especially hungry this time, so both kids got to feed them.

Of course Alex wanted to do it herself!
Love this smile!

For the first time in a really long time, we made it all the way to the back to the Texas Wild. Riley was so excited about the seeing the alligator and bats!
The majestic bald eagle!
Such a fun day! We are always so hot and sweaty when we leave, but we have a blast!

Sunday, June 27, 2010

I have a 5 year old!

Oh My Goodness! I have a 5 year old! I know I will probably go through this crazy emotion all over again in a few months when I have a kindergartner, but right now I cannot believe I have a child that is 5 years old. I remember it like it was yesterday, when my tiny sweet little boy came into the world 6 weeks early. I remember all the details, good and bad. Like the 40 hours of labor, two shots & 1 pill to try to stop the labor, the dr telling me that I wasn't in labor. If I wasn't in labor, then I really wanted him to explain the intense pain that started in my back and spread to my belly every 5 minutes. Vividly I can recall telling Randy to go ahead and leave for Midland at 3 in the morning because I was pretty sure that it was just braxton hicks. But still I was timing them and called my dr at 8 in the morning. She told me to head to the hospital. So I drove myself to my mom & dad's. I figured if I had been having contractions since 10:30 pm the night before (on our one year anniversary!) then I didn't have time to wait for mom to get dressed, drive all the way to Haslet, and then us turn around and drive back to downtown Fort Worth. They gave me a shot and sent me home to rest. Luckily I chose to stay at my parents since Randy was out of town and take a nap. I just wish that I had taken a shower because I ended up not getting a shower until two mornings later! At 5:00pm, we headed back to the hospital because my contractions were back to 15 min apart. This time we stayed at the hospital. But no one, except me and my parents believed that I was having this baby now! The dr still told me I was not having a baby and don't tell my husband to come home. Around 10pm I decided that I needed to tell Randy to come home. He not so nicely told me that he had been up since 3 am and it was not safe for him to drive 5 hours back home! Well great! Finally around 5 the dr gave me my epidural. I was exhausted by then and dying in pain. Then he wanted to break my water immediately. I knew the first flight out of Midland wasn't until 7, so I convinced him to hold off breaking my water. Then of all times, the first flight was booked, and Randy doesn't tell anyone that his wife was IN LABOR! He takes the 2nd flight out. He landed at Love Field around noon and by the grace of God and Richard's insane speed driving, he walked in the hospital 30 minutes later. I immediately starting pushing and at 2:36pm, my beautiful red headed boy was born!

Just look at how he has grown through the years.... I am so proud of the handsome sweet boy he has become. Now we just have to work on that perfectionist in him and sensitive side that gets his feelings hurt. Too much like his mommy!

Happy Birthday My Sweet Riley! I love you to the moon & back, infinity and beyond, forever & ever!

A Big 5 year old party

On Saturday, we had Riley's 5 year birthday party at Main Event in Grapevine. He had been to a birthday party there about a month before that and decided that was what he wanted to do. The funny thing was a month ago was his first ever time to bowl. He was horrible. In fact he had the lowest score of anyone at the party. But I let him have his way and have the bowling party. In an effort to be a good teaching mom, I decided on Friday morning that we should go bowling one time before the party to get in some extra practice. What a fiasco! He threw the biggest fit and told me he didn't even want to have a party. I was furious!! I even went in to the sales office to see if I could cancel. No such luck, but now I am so thankful that I didn't cancel. On Saturday morning, my easy going, fun loving child showed back up. He was so excited about the party that he naturally threw the ball harder down the lane. In fact he scored a spare in his second frame. That did it. From that point on, he was having the time of his life and bowled really well. In fact, he had the highest score at our party! I was so proud of him. At one point during the party, they crank the music up, turn on the black lights and the disco ball, and have a dance party. My children liked this the best. In fact, next year I think I will just rent out a club and have a dance party! Alex doesn't look like it in this picture, but she was just dancing and having so much fun!

Riley squeezing in some dance moves between bowling!
This was the only picture that I got of his face while bowling. It looks weird because it was so dark in there with only the black lights on.

The final score for the boys in his lane.

Then it was time for the cake & presents. We did Toy Story cupcakes for the kids and pizza.

The kids loved the Toy Story rings in the cupcakes.

Alex loved the icing!

Riley is so into space right now, so this gift was a huge hit. Most of his gifts were Toy Story, space, or cars theme. He was so excited about all of them. For the first time ever, I can truly say that he was really excited about ALL of them. Our friends do an awesome job of picking out toys!
After all the food, the kids got $15 game cards to spend on games. We had two extra, so Chuck & Randy also got to have their own cards. I'm sure Riley, Brandon, & Matthew were glad that they did not have to share with Dad.
Motorcycle? I see trouble in my future!
Alex & Gampa had to play all the shooting games. At least she doesn't realize that she is not really playing. It is much cheaper that way!

Claire & her mommy had a long game going on!
Jacob had to practice shooting the rifles with his granddad too!
This was Randy's idea of watching Alex!
Father & Son -Truckers!
Riley was so excited. I would say the party was a huge success. Thanks to all who came!

Party #2- Family Party

Saturday evening after a quick nap for Alex, we headed over to my mom & dad's house for Riley's family party. It was originally supposed to be at my house, but last minute we decided to do it at their house. We knew they would be wanting to show the house off during the day anyway, and let's face it I don't know if I ever would have gotten my house as clean as I wanted it. It is just so hard these days with such active kids to get anything clean before they mess up the last room I just cleaned.
I had decided that this might be the year to start separating all the friends from all the grandparents and truthfully it turned out wonderful! With the exception of the fact that I was exhausted from partying all day, Riley was exhilarated because he got to open presents twice. Plus it kept the present pile from becoming overwhelming all at once. The only bad thing was I had to order cupcakes for all the friends and a cake for the family, but then again we got the best of both worlds! :) Here is the cake I searched everywhere for. Seriously I went to 2 Albertson's and 1 Kroger before I finally found this at Walmart. Everyone told me that they had not gotten in their Toy Story stuff yet. The movie came out LAST WEEKEND! What are they waiting for? But anyway I thought this cake was cute & yummy. I am no longer knocking grocery store cakes!

After we ate hamburgers & hot dogs, then we opened the presents. Here is the Wii Nerf game that Mommy & Daddy bought him.

And of course, the grabby thing that Randy just had to buy him! Don't think it wasn't well tried out as we walked all through Toys R Us. Riley loves it too! Go figure, BOYS!
Caleb especially loved studying the tower that went along with the Construction Crane. I think he will grow up to be an engineer. He is so cute they way he studies things. Plus it will just kill Jamie & Chad when he decides to follow his cousins to A&M because they have the best engineering school. :)

We finally did the cake & ice cream at 8:00pm. But both kids were so exhausted by the time we loaded up all the new toys, cameras, and their stuff that you couldn't even tell that they had extra sugar so close to bedtime. Overall it was a great day and Riley just beamed all day long. That makes for a really happy mommy. Even Randy noticed because as we fell into bed exhausted last night, he leaned over and said, "You are a really great mom!" Ahh!

Thursday, June 24, 2010

A New Pallette!

Wow, today was one of those days. I started my morning by finishing something off of a 5 year to-do list. My parents came over to help out this morning. My mom tackled Riley's bedroom and cleaning it out while my dad & I tackled my bedroom. I FINALLY have curtains hanging in my bedroom. We have been living in this house 5 and a half years and I finally have curtains! Well at least a valance. I forgot to buy the smaller rod to hang the sheers underneath, but they will get there. Then we hung 3 pictures in my bedroom of the kids and Alex's 1 year cake collage in my living room. Eventually I will get there!
With all this redecorating, Alex decided to help out. In the midst of everything, she got one of Riley's markers and colored on my walls and french doors. Luckily it came off immediately on the glass, and the magic eraser got most of it off the walls. I felt very accomplished today until I look around my house and see the absolute destruction of toys that my kids left behind while I was distracted. How in the world am I having Riley's family birthday party here in 2 days????
Anyway tonight I actually sat down and watched the finale of Glee. I didn't do dishes, laundry, or clean the baths. I just sat on the couch with my husband and watched a really great show. At first, Alex was so cute dancing around the living room to the songs. She is such a girly girl! But of course the kids got bored and disappeared into Riley's room. I am not a first time mom and I know better! When the kids get quiet, you better go figure out what they are up to. Instead of telling you what I found, I will just show you!
Aren't they beautiful? ;)

I immediately paused the show and told them to get in the bath. I knew they were washable markers, so I just figured we would work on the faces in the tub. Riley decided he knew better. So he started washing both of their faces in the sink using my antibacterial soap. Guess what? Pretty soon, I had two kids crying because they had soap in their eyes. "I told you to take a bath!!!"
So here is how they felt after their little adventure. Of course the moral of this story is Riley may be old enough to not color on the walls with his markers, but the markers still need to be hidden away on a top shelf and only used under adult supervision. Otherwise they might color on each other!

Friday, June 18, 2010

Vacation Bible School 2010

This year's VBS was Out of this World. Literally our theme was Galatic Blast: A Cosmic Adventure to God. We, (Riley, Alex, Nana, Gampa, & I) had a fun, but exhausting week. Our director this year was in my sunday school class, so I knew I was doomed from the start. This year I took on Recreation Coordinator for the elementary age kids. We have around 300 kids attend VBS every year. This was a really different role than what I have done in the past, but I thoroughly enjoyed playing the games and working with 8 different dynamic youth. The bad thing was I spent more time preparing for each day's activities than I did the whole last month of school!
This is Riley's really small kindergarten class. My mom was his shepherd. This was the first time in 20 years that my mom has done VBS, but we talked her into it. It started with me talking dad into doing it last year after vbs. Several members of their sunday school class had participated, so I convinced Dad to try it. After all, he is retired. My dad had a group of 3rd graders, that included many of my kids from last year.
During the week, the little ones of the VBS workers can also attend. So this was Alex's group, the Talkers.

Then Thursday night, they have a program and the kids sing several of the songs that they have learned that week. Riley's age sang in the first two songs. Before the program, Daddy & Alex got a little silly.
Then Alex decided to become a movie star!
Finally the kids came out and Riley shined. I was so proud of him. Last year he refused to sing. This year he was having a blast!
Gampa & Riley being silly in some of the amazing decorations of the week!
This was the story telling room.
Nana & Riley outside their classroom
Now all of us in front of the "Volunteers are Out of this World!" sign

My own little space cadet

A star is born!
Mission Control: "Praise God!"