Raising Two ADVENTURERS to Love Jesus

Raising Two ADVENTURERS to Love Jesus

Thursday, November 29, 2012

What are you THANKFUL for?

We certainly have much to be thankful for this season.  
1. A Heavenly Father that can paint a pretty amazing masterpiece in your life if you let Him.
2. Two healthy, precious boys.
3. A husband that provides for our family and is the best daddy.
4. Family and friends full of love and support.
and our list could go on and on....
We did a "thankful" tree for the first time this year with Dylan (thanks, Pinterest) and he really enjoyed it.  Some mornings, he would remind me that it was time to do a thankful leaf!  Mission.  Accomplished. 
We also made some pretty awesome turkey cookies (again-Thanks, Pinterest).  He loved eating, putting all of the candy corn on the cookies for feathers.  They were a hit at Thanksgiving lunch and actually tasted great!
This was our year to be with my Mom and Dad and her family in Amagon, Arkansas.  Caleb took a header into the coffee table before we left home.  Big.  Ole.  Shiner.  Learning balance is a tough job!  He enjoyed the car ride because I sat in between the seats and fed him blueberry puffs! He did take a little moment to call his friends on the phone! And what would you do without a DVD player?!? Dylan enjoyed watching The Berenstein Bears on our little road trip.
It was so wonderful for Dylan to get to play with cousins that he sees every other year!  Jayden and Keagan are "all boy" just like Dylan.  I know if they lived closer, it would be mud pies and black eyes for sure! We attempted some posed shots, but that didn't work out so well! The picture is a little small, but Zoe has the most awesome little girl curls!  She is a doll!  And Miss Cali, well, her big brown eyes just make you smile!  She and big brother Jayden are moving to Hawaii while their Daddy is stationed there.  Thinking, vacation?!?
We ate some amazing food!  My Aunt Vernadene makes THE BEST turkey dressing on the planet.  It has the PERFECT amount of each seasoning.  Most dressings tend to be heavy on the sage.  Not hers, I had a few servings.  I enjoyed catching up with all the "girl" cousins.  Caleb enjoyed a nice nap after lunch.  The guys enjoyed chatting ducks and electricity.  Our family motto ;)  And my sweet Dylan could NOT stop eating.  This plate of BBQ potato chips was after a plateful of "real" food and two servings of dessert.  He then went back for another plate of chips and a cookie before we left. Geez!
 Jayden and Dylan being BOYZ and checking out each piece of equipment at Uncle Wayne's farm!
Here are the little boy cousins enjoying a ride in the Kubota.  
 Caleb, Dylan, and cousin Westen enjoyed watching the horses and cows in the pasture. 
 Cauy got to ride on a horse earlier in the day.  He really had a way with them.  We had a wonderful day.  My mom counted around 80 family members there for lunch.  What a heritage!  Going to the part of the country where my mom grew up allows me to slow down.  Seeing the fields, the horses, the wide open spaces really allows you to appreciate God's wonders.  It allows ME to relax and enjoy a slower pace.  I am thankful that my boys are experiencing it as well.  
 Who loves Pop? My boys! Dylan calls him Poppy these days and now when we walk in their house, Caleb points and reaches for him, too! What can I say, he is the best Dad and the best Poppy!
 The best we could get of the family of four! Thankful, thankful, thankful. 

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

New Stages....

Dylan and I enjoyed some chalk time while Caleb was napping.  I suggested that we draw pumpkins.  He has always loved chalk, so much more than crayons/markers/etc.  It probably runs a close second to painting.  I was so excited when I realized how well he was drawing!  He made a great circle, and even added eyes, nose and a mouth to his pumpkin.  He drew a Daddy pumpkin and a baby pumpkin (in blue).  He also drew very LONG pumpkin stems.  They reached all the way to the street and curved back around towards the garage.  He really thought that was funny!  He is learning new things and I am so proud of him!   Way to work hard, Dylan!   

 We have also hit the question....WHY????  He asks this question 234,765 times a day!  Here are a few examples as of lately:
"Why did God make trees with leaves and God make trees without leaves?"
"Why is Jesus in heaven?"
"Why did Daddy go to work?"
"Why is it time to eat lunch?"
"Why can't we take my bicycle in the house?"
The list goes on and on.  Pretty much with any conversation we have, he asks the question WHY.  I do my best to give him answers, but sometimes I can't even think of one!  Like today when I decided we would go to see Daddy Vell and Uncle Larry before we went down to the church building, he follows up with WHY?! Ha!  Just what I thought would be best! ;) I enjoy it because I know that is how he learns, but I tell ya, sometimes I just laugh!  Apparently, I asked my parents 234,765 questions a day, too.  So, he comes by it honest.
I LOVE his curiousity, his ability to remember the smallest of details from months ago, and his little mind that works and works all day long!  CHEERS to enjoying my three year old, his growing mind, and all the new stages!

Monday, November 5, 2012

Halloween Festivities '12

All I can say is these few pictures have my heart!  Dylan told me months ago that he wanted to be a baseball player for Halloween.  He's been really into baseball lately.  A friend at church gave us the baseball pants that her son had outgrown.  We had the shirt and Razorback hat.  We bought the baseball cleats at Academy.  He loves them and wears them just for fun! I decided that Caleb could be a baseball!  A white onesie, white knit pants, red puffy paint, baseball shoes for $3 at Rhea Lana, and the baby baseball was ready!
Love these boys with my whole heart!
Okay, seriously, how old does he look in this picture?!  I am not going to be able to stand it when he starts playing tee ball!
Isn't he the cutest baby baseball you have ever seen?

We had so much fun at our church Trunk-or-Treat.  Caleb just took in his surroundings, and enjoyed digging in the candy bowl in the back of Pop and Mawmaw's car.  Dylan loved going from car to car collecting candy.  He wanted to pick his own candy out of each bowl instead of letting people stick candy in his bag.  Ha, pretty funny!  I did have to cut the candy intake off before the night was over.  
 We enjoyed the annual Arnold Family Pumpkin Carving at Aunt Margaret's house.  Dylan wanted a "happy" pumpkin, and our cousin Wendy suggested it have dimples like Dylan!  He LOVED pulling out the guts, but he kept saying, "Look, I got more gourds!" Love the age of learning new vocabulary.  
 Caleb enjoyed Aunt Margaret's party, too!  He really just wanted to climb up the stairs!
 We love fall!

Saturday, November 3, 2012

First Birthday Party: Sock Monkey Style

Caleb's 1st birthday party was so much fun!  I will have to be honest, if it weren't for my sister and mom coming over the Wednesday before the party on Friday, none of this would have come to life! I had dreamed up the sock monkey theme when he was just a little baby.  I got a few ideas from Pinterest, and voila!  The party was complete!
We enjoyed pulled pork and chicken barbeque, ribs, potato salad, and baked beans for supper.  Then we had small individual cups of Banana pudding (my Daddy Vell's recipe).  The root beer barrels and monkey vines were really more decoration than anything else!  A friend of the family made the large cake and Caleb's smash cake.  The sock monkey on top of the cake was made by Aunt Margaret. 
Even though it was just a small group of immediate family and one little friend, Caleb was a little overwhelmed at all of the hype.  It took him a good supper, and some time to adjust, then he was ready to play!  He honestly got stuck playing with the little jungle toy below and was done! Dylan helped him open gifts.  He had been looking forward to that all week long!  Caleb shared a really sweet moment playing with his Daddy Vell.  I cherish watching Caleb play with his great-grandpa!
Caleb was lucky to have his "favorites" at the party!  Of course, his brother makes him laugh like no one else can!   Top to bottom: Aunt Janell traveled all the way from Atlanta to be here for his big weekend.  We love her like she was truly "family".  Guess that is what happens when you have known someone for 27 years! Mawmaw and Pop were there too!  Caleb loves his motorcycle from them.  He already knows how to push all of the buttons, and he can scoot it backwards! Daddy Vell and Mrs. Kathleen were able to come.  We are so thankful they could share in the memories! Uncle Craig & Aunt "Cawul" love these boys so much.  Blessed to have them so active in their lives! Nana & Pawpaw love to snuggle Caleby!  He reaches for them everytime he sees them!
Thanks everyone in our family for sharing in this special time with our ONE year old!  You only have "one" first birthday!  It is super special!
Caleb invited one buddy to his party.  We were so glad that Beau got to come!  Drew and Lindsey have been some of our best friends since high school and it is fun to watch our boys grow up so close to each other!  Caleb kept trying to pat-pat Beau's head and kiss his cheek.  They crawled after each other and would just smile.  I didn't expect the huge amount of interaction that they showed with each other.  They were a-d-o-r-a-b-l-e!
Sweet doll baby Caleb was NOT a fan of the cake.  We all sang Happy Birthday which was led by his big brother.  Aunt Carole and Dylan both tried to help him get started.  He kept giving it the one finger poke.  Daddy even dug into the cake to get some actual cake for him to try.  He made a pretty awful face and then just started to hand pieces over to Daddy.  It was a lot of fun to watch.  He was the total opposite of his big brother, who dug fiercely into the cake and had it EVERYWHERE!  Note to self: maybe how the experience their first birthday cake correlates with their budding personalities! Ha!

Lil' Red:
So my sister and brother-in-law outdid themselves once again.  They made Dylan a wooden rocking horse for his first birthday which is still going strong today.  Well, here is Caleb's handmade present.  My sister saw one in Fayetteville at Parent's Weekend and of course, the wheels started turning.  Craig hand-crafted the Razorback, rockers, and...wait for it....he hand-painted EVERYTHING!  I was in awe of his handy work.  It was definitely the talk of the party.  Caleb was a little unsure of it on his party night, but since, I have gotten some very cute pictures and videos of him on Lil' Red.  He will even rock every so slightly now.
Thanks Uncle Craig for your time in crafting this neat gift for Caleb.  I know it was a labor of love and it definitely shows me how much you love this little boy!  Thanks Aunt Carole for always coming up with ideas and crafts for my boys.  You amaze me with your abilities.  (The sock monkey applique on Caleb's birthday outfit was made by Aunt Carole).  You are the best sister I could ever ask for in my life!
Pawpaw pulled Caleb in the wagon at the end of the party.  Aunt Janell would hide behind the couch and play peek-a-boo with him as he passed by in the wagon.  He would just cackle with excitement!
And here is the birthday boy: one year-one day old.  Isn't he just a little doll baby?!?
Caleby, we love you to the moon and back, forever and always, no matter what!

Thursday, November 1, 2012

Our doll baby is ONE!

It is truly unbelievable how fast this year has gone! It is amazing how Caleb has become the best "new" addition to our family and now we can't imagine life without this doll baby!

20 pounds 8 ounces - 30 1/4 inches - size 18m clothes - moving to size 4 diapers
laid back until life isn't going your way-snuggly-grumpy when you first wake up-sweet-adoring of your big brother-a lover of your Momma-delightful-joyful-
lots of jibber jabber- a bah (ah boo)- di duh (Dylan)- bi buh (Bible)-just lots more connecting current vocabulary with its real meaning
you transitioned to whole milk like a champ-regular crawl everywhere but you are not interested in walking-walking more while holding our hands-bang your head on the floor or buck backwards when things aren't going your way-wave side to side for "Hi!"-started riding in your big boy car seat-you dance to music by bouncing up and down- you do anything for a laugh- you shake your head no and roll your eyes back in your head to be silly- you love to mimic every noise and movement we make!-you love to point, you point to things you want or places you want to go-it is your newest way to communicate with us!- you take 2 naps a day- you are ready for bed by 7:15-7:30 and you sleep for 12 hours which is GREAT!

*Fun story: Pop came over to see you and brother.  You reached for him and he picked you up.  Then, you pointed towards your new cozy coupe car and rattled off a mouthful of jibber-jabber.  We cracked up!  You were telling Pop about your new toy and you needed to show him!  It was priceless!

 On your actual birthday, we ate lunch with Pop, Mawmaw, Daddy, Mommy, Dylan, Aunt Carole & Uncle Craig at American Pie Pizza.  You LOVED the pizza and the sugar cookie for your birthday treat.  It was your first cookie, and you were very territorial over it.  You held it with both hands and would NOT let go of it for one second!  

 Mommy, Daddy, and Dylan got you a Cozy Coupe Car for your birthday.  Your big brother saw it in the garage and really needed to check it out, so we gave it to you that evening.  You LOVE it!  Your favorite feature is the door.  You love to open and close it.  You can move it backwards with your feet. Dylan thinks it is fun to ride on the top.  We try to discourage that idea.  You are DELIGHTFUL!
Stay tuned for the Birthday extravaganza post!