Monday, April 20, 2015

Good Weather and Birthday Shenanigans.

I feel like I'm having an out of body experience, as this is the third post in a row where I am actually blogging within an acceptable time frame post-events. AND the post has pictures from the big girl camera, which seems like a rarity these days. It's like you're getting a double bonus and you didn't even ask for it ;)

The weather this past weekend was iffy on the forecast, but we were given glimpses into perfection, of which we took full advantage of. Drew's mom came up for a short visit on Friday, and the boys thoroughly enjoyed showing their Mamaw around some of the local trails. The weather was absolutely gorgeous while we were out. 15 minutes after we pulled into the driveway, the worst hail storm I had seen since we've lived in our new home swept through the area and about gave me a heart attack that we were going to have to replace our roof. Although, given the choice between hail and tornadoes, I'll pick hail.
Tyler was clearly excited about picture taking.
we decided after this was taken that candid will have to be what we go to with Ty.
the ragweed is blooming. It's pretty, and does a pretty number on all of our allergies.
the boys were ALL OVER THE PLACE at the park we went to. And we realized that us avoiding the fights with Tyler and allowing him to wear flip flops to the trails was not our best parenting decision.
might be my new favorite picture.

Saturday we were supposed to have soccer, but that got canceled, so the boys spent most of the morning playing games and coloring with Drew's mom while Drew and I got things ready for Brayden's birthday party. It was a semi-lazy morning, which was an unexpected blessing given the fact that our schedule this month hasn't allowed for much laziness. Drew's dad came up for the day too, so the boys were pretty spoiled with lots of attention.

Saturday afternoon we celebrated Brayden's birthday with a few of his closest friends. Brayden was insistent it was a BOYS ONLY party, so we kept it simple and small. We had originally planned to have an indoor swimming party, but I didn't like our chances of having a swimming party rained out (they close it during thunderstorms even though it is indoors), so we switched plans at the last minute and had the party at a local place that's similar to Chuck-E-Cheese. Brayden loved it, the boys all had fun and everyone went home wiped out. It was a good day for celebrating six years of this boy!

We're back off to a busy start to the week. I finished my last day of volunteer work at Brayden's school today. It is surreal to me that we are about to wrap up our first year of Elementary school and usher in summer. Here's to hoping Spring spreads just a little farther for all of us....

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Boogers and Boys.

I don't know about y'all, but Easter being early this year really has thrown me completely off track and I'm not sure I'll recover until we hit summer. I knew that April would be busy, but I was caught off guard when Easter came and went and now we're on this ever quickening downhill slope of school ending, sports colliding and me standing in the middle of it hoping my kids will one day soon eat foods other than pizza and corn dogs.

A few short stories for you tonight:

For his birthday, Brayden received a card from my dad that said it was made out of recycled boogers. Brayden carried it around for several days, then on Monday before school we had this conversation:
Brayden: Mom, do you think this card is telling the truth? I don't think it is made out of boogers.
Me (playing stupid): I mean, I'm not sure. I think they probably are. Don't you?
Brayden: No. I think they're lying.
Me: Why do you think that?
Brayden: (licking the card) they're definitely lying. It doesn't taste like boogers.

I normally am able to maintain composure during situations when my kids say things like this. But this situation was not a composed moment and I about peed my pants there in the kitchen. We had a good laugh together, and I explained that sometimes people say things just as a joke on cards so that they can make people laugh. I also love that Brayden was concerned about finding out the truth... he is my justice fighter and will not stand for something to not be right. Can't wait to see where God leads his little heart to help fight for justice in the world.

We were sitting at a stop light today after bible study. The light happened to be right next to a Sonic, and from the back I hear Tyler yell "strawderry flush! strawderry flush!" At first I couldn't quite make out what he meant, and then I realized he wanted a strawberry slush. I'm not sure whether I should be proud or embarrassed by the fact that my two year old knows what he wants to order at Sonic.

I have dug into my past and found my old friendship bracelet gene is still working well. The boys love having different bracelets and things on their wrists, so I tried my hand at paracord bracelet making this week. It's extremely easy to do, and the boys LOVE them. Even Tyler likes wearing it. Glad to know that all of those hours tying cross stitch thread in my junior high years have come in handy all these years later ;)

I ended today realizing that my dream of being the house that all the boys flock to is quickly becoming a reality. At one point today I had 5 boys other than my own children in my front yard playing. Everyone was well behaved, but the moment that they said they thought it would be a good idea to use the Razor scooters on Tyler's roller coaster track, I knew that I might have bartered for a bit more than I can chew (I don't stomach large gashes and broken bones that well). It did make me laugh, and thankfully no one was hurt in the stunts. I'm so very grateful for where the Lord has planted us. In the past month He has made it abundantly clear that His hand is in even the smallest of details, down to the boys that have also been planted in this neighborhood and who we now have as a part of our daily lives. Now to just figure out how I'm going to feed all these boys when they're over and get hungry.....

Thursday, April 9, 2015

Brayden Turns 6.

Six years ago today, the world changed and not many people knew it.

Six years ago, Brayden Thomas entered the world, and our lives changed (for the better), forever.

This birthday has been particularly bitter sweet for me. It just seems so.... BIG. As evidenced by this absolutely adorable video of his last night as a five year old (this was unprompted by me, and I may have watched it twenty times last night after he went to bed- ha!)
A video posted by Lindsey (@adollopofmylife) on

As a rule of thumb at our house, birthdays are the third most important day of the year in ones life (only behind Christmas and Easter), so today was a pretty big deal. because Brayden has caught on to our rule of thumb ;) The opinions were very particular about what he wanted for today (You get to pick out all of your meals, and what you do for the day) Brayden chose "adult" donuts (apple fritters), a double cheeseburger happy meal with Sprite and monster cookie (from our local bakery) and corndogs and tater tots for dinner. I asked him why he chose those things and he said "because I really like those guys!" So, we went with clean eating, Brayden style. He was pretty stoked about it (and I am thankful his teacher didn't kill us with all of that sugar intake during school hours!).
Lunch with the birthday boy. #Bturnssix #mboys2015When you have a birthday in our house, you get to pick all your meals. So far he's had: adult donuts (apple fritters), double cheeseburger from McD's and dinner is corndogs and tater tots (because he "just loves those guys!"). #cleaneatingBraydenstyle #Bt
(this picture cracks me up because Connor was pretty stoked about something in the background)
We already gave Brayden his big gift (a mountain bike), but wanted to give him something on his actual birthday too. I found this Captain America Nerf shield and knew he'd love it. Can never go wrong with Nerf for a school aged boy.

I usually stick with Walmart or Sams for the boys cakes and cupcakes, but went to a local bakery here in town instead today and was blown away by this cookie pizza cake. Looks like I have a second option for cakes now.


I know I say it often, but I can never say it enough, the world became a better place when you were born. You are the answer to so many prayers, and I am so proud watching you grow into such an awesome young man. You are tenacious, loving, empathetic to others needs, have a willingness and insatiable desire to seek truth and your desire to learn more about Jesus is the best of all of your traits. I'm so glad that God made you and that He placed you in our family. We think you're pretty awesome. Happy Birthday, big guy!

Sunday, April 5, 2015

Easter 2015.

I suppose that my view has the possibility to change every year, but this may be my favorite Easter yet as a parent.

Saturday we decided to brave the Easter egg hunt scene again. We've been missing from Easter egg hunting since our last rodeo with the madness in 2011. If you've read my blog since then, then you may remember Drew swearing that we'd never grace an Easter egg hunt again with so much as a shadow. Parent egg hoarders are a real thing, y'all, and I'm still scared by that incident. Thankfully we found a much less stressful egg hunt, that was actually even Jesus-focused. The kids had a great time (although there was whining involved because trying to explain grand prizes to a 4 year old is rough) and everyone was mighty worn out by the time it ended.
Tyler's first Easter egg hunt. #mboys2015
This was Tyler's first egg hunt. He did so good... until he realized they had candy in them. Then he just wanted to eat the candy he already had (which was about 3 eggs worth). ha!
the age groups were all divided across the church campus, which was probably the only unfortunate thing about the event, because it made us have to divide and conquer. Connor went with Drew, who remembered to take pictures (brownie point for the man!)
Drew's stepdad came up for the day... the boys enjoyed having their Papaw here to see their exceptional egg hunting abilities ;)

For the past several years we've chosen to attend the Saturday night service at our church in lieu of traditional Sunday morning (we obviously have issues with large crowds, as I am noticing a pattern between this and our Easter egg hunt phobia). It has worked out really well for our family, so we continued that tradition this year as well.
Connor was the only one who cooperated long enough for me to take a picture of him at our home before we left. He's grown up so much in the past several months. My mom mentioned today that he looks like a school-boy now and not a toddler. I'm trying not to think about it too much, because I just can't even fathom having TWO boys in school (thankfully he won't be going to school for another year and a half).

I snapped a few pictures of the boys after the church service, and it was basically like trying to herd feral cats. I did manage to snap this beauty:
It's definitely not your prim and proper Southern Baptist Easter pic. But it is SO my boys. I love when I am able to capture each of their personalities so well. I've been told the boys need to recreate this when they're older. I'm game. I didn't even have the courage to ask someone to snap a pic of our whole family. It's just not happening, and I prefer my blood pressure to be on the normal side of the spectrum anyways.
(this is what we got when we told them to stand still. haha!)

Sunday the kids woke up early, made it to my bedside, and immediately asked me why their baskets were empty. Ha!
Don't worry, I didn't forget. I actually left them empty on purpose this year. Growing up, my mom made different Easter morning scavenger hunts for us, with little stations that had different symbols of Easter. It is a fond memory for me, and since the older two boys are old enough to really understand everything (and the concept of a scavenger hunt), I decided to do that this year. So instead of filling their baskets, I left a clue at their baskets and then they made their way through 5 clues in the house till they ended at the back porch where eggs were hidden and their easter basket goodies were waiting. The boys LOVED the scavenger hunt, I loved that it slowed things down and made them really focus on the WHY of Easter, and it even gave us time as a family to stop and pray together before they tore into eggs and goodies. Like I mentioned, there were 5 clues, and each clue was given only if the kids answered the question on the outside of the envelope correctly (because we had done Resurrection eggs so much leading up to Easter, I knew they would know the answers easily). So it went like:
clue #1: what did Jesus ride into Jerusalem on?
clue #2: how many coins did Judas get when he betrayed Jesus? (they each received 3 quarters in this envelope, then were lead to the next clue).
clue #3: What did Jesus do with his friends before he was betrayed? (they were given Peeps, because Jesus hung with his "peeps" on the night he was betrayed.
clue #4: Why did Jesus die? (we talked about why Jesus had to die on the cross for us, and they were each given a chocolate cross)
clue #5: Why do we celebrate Easter? (we talked about the real reason we were celebrating, Drew prayed for our family, and the kids were told to go to the back door, where they each received a few small gifts and were able to hunt for a few eggs).
We will definitely do the scavenger hunt again. It was a big hit all the way around. As was the starburst, as evidenced by the 5 that Tyler shoved in his mouth in about 3 minutes flat. Happy Easter, indeed!

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