Saturday, May 29, 2010

Backyard BBQ Birthday Bash (Number One)!

Today we celebrated the boys' first birthday with both of our families with a backyard barbecue picnic theme!  It was a perfect birthday party, right down to the sunny, warm weather with a gentle breeze. 

Instead of ordering a cake, Aunt L and I made these with blue and green buttercream icing - so delicious!  Who thought cupcakes could be so fun?
Nathan does!  It took a minute, but once he got a lick of that homemade icing - he was all in!
Matthew was a bit more tentative, but still managed to eat the whole thing!
The boys had help opening their presents by mom and dad and big boy cousins, S and E.  What a lot of loot!  The boys didn't seem too thrilled to open the clothes, but I sure was! 
THANK YOU, THANK YOU, THANK YOU to all of our family for making today so special for us and the boys.  Our little fellas will only turn one once, you know!  We had so much fun force-feeding you all our cupcakes and hot dogs, playing "horseshoes," pushing you in the hammock, and whacking wiffle balls!  I've been told there are "plans" for next year's Backyard BBQ Birthday Bash, and I can't wait to do it all over again!

P.S. Here's a cutie patootie bonus pic of me and Matthew communicating about getting some milk to wash all that cake down:
Readers, I'm going to take a few days off of blogging to spend some time with my family, so I'll see you next week.  Just had to get a few birthday shots out to you because it was SO MUCH FUN!

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Birthday Suits

Here's what we look like today!

  Nathan: Mom's feeling pretty schmoopy about us turning one today, getting big and desperately trying to take steps, so she wants us to tell you to hold onto your shorts and she'll update you on our upcoming one-year's doctor appointment and the birthday bash we're having this weekend. 

Matthew: If you're itching to walk down memory lane today, check out our birth story blog entry or this one about mom's first night alone with us. 
Nathan: No, not that one, I'm naked there!

Matthew: yeah, I am, too!  So don't read them!  Never mind!  I can't believe she tricked us into saying that!

Nathan: Wait a minute.  Maybe she meant to do that.

Mathew: Huh?  Why would she let people see us naked?

Nathan: Because we're in our BIRTHDAY SUITS!

Matthew: (groans) Oh, man!  

Nathan: Aren't you glad we got new ones for this year?

Monday, May 24, 2010

Water Babies

We're having a record-breaking heat wave in the Twin Cities this week, so we've rolled out the water toys.  Today we got together with E and her twin boys (who also turn one this week) and splashed, splashed, splashed!
Fearless Nathan dives right in!
 Matthew goes in a bit more carefully
A loved it!
G cools off in his favorite spot
Matthew takes a breather in the pack and play...look at those chompers!
Nathan turns his attention to chewing the ducky and eating grass
Back home during the late afternoon, the temp was 95, so we cooled down again with the water table.  Here's Nathan giving Matthew a faceful of water.  Yes, they're naked - and they love it!

Make New Friends, But Keep the Old

Anyone remember that song from Girl Scouts?  That's where I learned it, anyway.  The second line is, "one is silver and the other's gold."  I always thought it was just a cute kids' song, but I'm learning that it contains much grown-up wisdom.

Becoming a stay-at-home-mom of twin one-year-olds (TOMORROW! The big day!) has forced me to branch out and make some new mommyfriends.  I heard it said recently that someone should give all 18 year-olds a manual teaching them how to make and be friends as an adult.  I concur.  So, I've been getting involved in my MVMOM club as well as RVC's mom's group.  Some ladies who are befriending me (and I them) suggested we have a ladies' night out - woo-hoo! 

Hubby's travel plans changed and it looked like I wasn't going to be able to see them, but the sweeties agreed to gather here while my babes slept upstairs.  Yay!  We chatted about houses, kids, hubbies, and munched on strawberry pie.  I had itunes on for some background noise, and one friend, J, said, "shhh...hear that?  That's (singer SK)"

"How do you know SK?" I asked.  The itunes was playing a Jars of Clay CD on which SK sang background vocals.

"I know her quite well!" she said, and went on to tell me how she spent two years in Rockford, IL, participating in a little-known (in these parts) discipleship training program, where she sang on the worship team with SK and eventually met her husband.

"WHAT?!" I cried!  I could hardly believe my ears.  I ALSO spent two hears doing the same thing (minus singing and meeting future hubs)!  After two wonderful years in Rockford, I moved back to MI to go back to college and finish my teaching degree, while many of my RMC friends were planning their weddings to their RMC boyfriends, much to my chagrin.  This was back in '99, when email was just becoming vogue, and more than a decade before the advent of facebook and (my) blogging, so I lost touch with all but two of them.

Well, it turns out that J and I missed each other by just a couple of months - the people I'd left behind were her friends, too!  My junior high kids (I was a youth leader in the church) were her high school kids, my classmates were her  We spent an hour catching up on mutual friends' lives, who married whom (and divorced whom) and, I could hardly believe my ears - two of my favorite people MARRIED EACH OTHER!  I dug out the old photo albums, and we really got laughing! 

I had a "God moment" last night with J and our RMC memories.  I know it sounds crazy, but it's one of those areas of my life that I don't talk much about because it's hard to explain why a beautiful (yeah, I was!  Wish I'd have known it then!) young college age girl would go spend two years of her life memorizing scripture, praying, serving others, traveling on missions trips, and NOT dating (not that I didn't want to - when I could have, no one asked!). 

In making new friends, in a small way, I am able to keep the old ones alive.  The time I spent with J last night reminiscing about two years "in the trenches" at RMC affirmed that those two years were well spent for maturing me, teaching me, and pointing me in the right direction to go back home and find my hubs, who'd been living just 11 miles from my house all along.

I'm so glad that I worked up the nerve to branch out, to invite the ladies over, that I made strawberry pie. Just when I think I can't be surprised, God does!

Saturday, May 22, 2010

Feliz cumpleaƱos!

Yesterday was going to be a picnic day - our end-of-the-year-school-picnic was scheduled to have a vehicle fair, complete with buses, police, fire and garbage trucks!  Alas, it was cold and raining, so we decided to frequent our favorite Mexican restaurant, Teresa's, and celebrate the boys' birthdays as a family of four for the first time.  (They turn ONE on Tuesday, which is freaking me out if I think about it too much.) It's not often we have Daddy home on a weekday OR that we're able to take advantage of their incredible lunch specials!

The boys dazzled the staff and patrons alike with their amazing cuteness!  Thanks to Aunt P, they kept themselves busy fishing puffs out of their new "snack traps" (an amazing invention by Munchkin brand - wish I'd have thought of it!) while we gobbled tacos, quesadillas, flautas, and baskets of chips.  Yeah, I know, it's not fair, but they ate their food before we left and we DID share some of our meals. 

Let the cuteness begin!  Fortunately, our neighboring table had celebrated a birthday while we were eating, and the boys just stared and stared.  Since we knew they wouldn't be frightened by the singing, we asked the staff to sing to them, too.  They brought two tiny sombreros and a little flan dessert!

We had a hard time getting a photo of Nathan with the little sombrero, but no worries...the best part was still to come.  While we fed them a couple bites of flan (they really didn't seem to like it, so we ate it - darn), the staff brought......
I think I'm going to buy them a helium tank for their birthday because the fun seriously lasted ALL DAY!
We always have fun at Teresa's and the boys really seem to enjoy it, too - could've been the Twins game on the big screen TV, or the amazing fun that it is to dump over mommy's water, but, whatever!  
God bless Teresa, whomever she is!

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Swingin' Sunday

It was another beautiful day in the neighborhood, so we strolled over to a nearby playground to try out the swings again.  The boys swang (swung?) for the first time two weeks ago in TX, so we thought we'd try it again.  Nathan's always gung-ho for a good time!
Matthew - not so much!
He hated it so much that he preferred snuggling - it must have been pretty awful!
Then we tried the slide - of course Nathan loved it!
Matthew tolerated it.
They both quickly figured out how to make the bouncy car go!
Vroom, vroom!
That was our excitement for the day!  Then we loaded up and drove Aunt L. to the airport.  Matthew was quite displeased about her departure and cried all the way home - 30 minutes straight!  Poor fella!  It just wasn't his day, I suppose.  We love you, Aunt L, and are happy you came to see us! 

Saturday, May 15, 2010

Super Saturday

Finally, the weather is beautiful here like it should be in the middle of May!  Today we packed a picnic lunch and headed to the Minnesota Zoo with Aunt L. 
Matthew and Nathan get up close and personal with a moose

Matthew is a little unsure of the bird show at first

Nathan loved it!  I, on the other hand, didn't see much of it.

We tried to snap a shot of Aunt L, Matthew and the bird, but...we got a good shot of the stage - it's nice, isn't it?
In fact, we were having so much fun watching the animals, we only took these few photos!  The zoo is our new favorite place to go, so I apologize in advance if you're bored with the zoo entries!  (However, daddy and the grandmas love it, so I'll keep writing.)
This afternoon, when we brought them inside, they wanted to go back out in the beautiful weather:
Please, take us outside!
So we dined al fresco tonight!
And strolled the neighborhood in our little red wagon.  The boys were entirely pooped and fell right to sleep after their bath tonight.  What a super spring Saturday!

Friday, May 14, 2010

Dear Daddy,

Hi Dad,
I can call you that now that we're big, right?  We officially graduated from "Moms and Muffins" today - it was our last time hanging out with the babies.  But it was know, there were girls here.  Yes, I said "here," mom actually let us have girls over!  Now we KNOW we're big!  See?
That's me, then Nathan, and you know A and G, then there's our new girlfriends A and M -(or is that M and A?) They're pretty cool.  They say they're not identical, but they look alike to me!  I really liked M, but I just didn't have the nerve to ask her out.  Mom says that I need to wait 20 years, but I'm thinking maybe we can go out for pizza next month for her birthday.  What do you think?  Can I borrow the car?

Love, Matthew

Dear Daddy,
Matthew is so funny!  He's all talk - he was so shy around the girls!  Ha, ha!  They were really fun and played with our toys and sat on Mom's lap.  I guess she likes it when babies do that? 
Then we took a nap, then we took a walk and saw a SCHOOL BUS and CATERPILLARS!  We read stories and played and skyped with you and played and skyped with Grandma and played and then when Aunt L thought I was asleep and she was giving Matthew his bottle I POOPED!  Ha, ha!  Then she had to clean me up!  Ha, ha!  It was a super-fun day!

Love, Nathan

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Crafty Thursday

What do you do when it rains the entire week Auntie L comes to visit?  Pack a picnic?  Zoom around the zoo?  No, you make crafts and bake more goodies!  Here we are at ECFE this morning, making a handprint for the boys' baby books:

Matthew chose blue for his print
Nathan had to dip twice to get it right...his left arm was yellow until bathtime!
Here's where we weren't so crafty: Nathan head-butted Matthew right in the mouth (by accident, I'm sure), where my poor little guy is teething.  His mouth was bleeding a tiny bit and he was UP-SET!  So Aunt L put on Yo Gabba Gabba while Matthew and mama snuggled (a rarity!) chewing on a frozen teething toy.  You'll notice that we've broken down and purchased the Play Yard XL gate to keep the boys out of our technology...classy, no?
Here we are making more sweets...clearly, too many food network shows!  However, L and I had to redeem ourselves after an unsightly, but quite delicious, anniversary cake for her parents back in March - remember this photo?
Thank goodness my in-laws love me!  They gobbled up this gooey, messy, white-cake-with-lemon-filling-and-marshmallow-frosting-experiment and said it was fabulous!  But L and I knew, deep down, we could improve. Sooo....
We're practicing our buttercream icing skills for the boys' birthday party!
Whaddya think?  And check out my roses, still blooming!