Saturday, November 27, 2010

Picture Full to Make Up...

In an effort to catch up, enjoy the photos and small captions where appropriate.

The Knights in the series playoff's!  GREAT game!
Happy little man!  Cheering on the brothers...
Ayden and his best pal, JE playing in the sand while brothers play tball!
Sweet Mason playing his first season of Orwall Tball!
Pals again!
Pumpkin Pickin!
Seriously a decent group picture, is that too much to ask???
Momma and her boys!
Daddy and her boys, had to go second so the quality of attention of the boys deteriorated....
Angel face!
Good friends, and great costumes!!!
Some of the great girls that I am blessed to be friends with at John's birthday party!!!

Friday, November 19, 2010

Picture-less Friday

You know, instead of Wordless Wednesday, except Picture-less and Friday do not at all start with the same letters.  Yes, I am laughing at myself, but let's just roll with it.  It is Friday night, and I am sitting here, with little to do.  Shhhh, I should hold that feeling in, because in the next few months I will have very few of these moments.

I feel the need to explain my hiatus from my blog over the last few months.  I am also feeling the need to get a little real, as this is a blog that I want to look back on and cherish the moments, all of them.  The first three reasons are kind of big deals...
1. Ayden.  He is now 6.  Wow.  6 years ago I became a mother and I have rarely looked back (I said I was going to be real).  Ayden started kindergarten in the fall.  He had a challenging go at it.  We began the first two and a half months of kindergarten with lots of unacceptable behaviors.  He was a challenge in the classroom and a natural leader, so Ayden's actions greatly effected the flow of his entire class (and sometimes entire lunch room).  He found himself isolated most of his days (consequences from behaviors), and constantly in a power struggle with us (his parents) and his teacher.  There wasn't a day that I didn't fear picking up my son and hearing the details of the present day.  I am thinking now as I write this, that it must of been equally fearful for Ayden to see me, and my disappointment.  The tipping point came when we were presented with the desire from the school to have him tested for attention disorders and possibly medicated.  Although I was presently overwhelmed and completely occupied with all things Ayden and behavior, I dove even deeper.  We prayed hard (for guidance, wisdom, and grace), drastically changed his diet, began seeing a play therapist, modified our parenting, read books (one invaluable book...Boundaries with Kids), began homeopaths and supplements, sought out advice from friends and family and kept taking it day by day.  We did not have him evaluated, or put on medication.  That is an entirely different post, and could be a real future for us some day much further down the line, but that is not what was in store for my five year old. It has been AMAZING.  Actually, I want a better word than amazing.  It isn't a miracle, because we all worked hard, especially Ayden, but it is more than amazing.  Ayden has blossomed into a wonderful little man.  He has a desire to please, whether it be parents, teachers or peers, he is always waiting for that acceptance, and our prayer is that he desires that same love from God someday.  He is behaving well and balanced in his abilities to function in his classroom, have a great time with his friends, and gain positive attention for the good things he does each day.  He is now reading books.  His handwriting is shaping up quite nicely.  He has earned a very nice fish tank on his dresser with two beautiful fish in it for his continuing good behavior.  He loves to play with legos and build new creations.  He loves his friends, and has the perfect love/hate relationship with his brothers.  He is a tremendous help to me, and has recently began helping with dishes, setting the table, and lending a hand with Reid.  He loves to be outside, and we are patiently waiting for him to want to ride his bike without the two extra wheels.  He had a wonderful fall season of tball where he really understood the game, and was a big part of the team (not just in the outfield picking weeds!).  Ayden is continuing to love swimming, and his technique is coming together seamlessly.  Ayden is a kind and caring little boy, and I can't wait to see what is in store for him in the next few years.
2. Mason.  My sweet little miracle Mason.  He is now 4 and a half years old.  Mason has been patient and content while we concentrated a lot of our efforts on his older brother.  I like to tell myself that Mason learns a lot in life by osmosis.  He is happy to please, and quick to comply.  His teacher this school year in pre-school was Ayden's teacher two years ago.  We all love her, especially Mason.  She describes him as all boy, but I see him more as a "do-er" and able to concentrate on the task at hand.  Mason likes to get things done.  He wants to be the first to get to the door, or complete the task that I ask anyone in the vicinity to do.  Mason doesn't like to be punished, and is fearful of negative attention.  This fear has lessened our reasons to do much more than communicate with him when it comes to discipline.  He is showing his muscles though in the last few weeks, and you can tell his natural rebellion is daring to sneak through.  Mason is also in love with Legos.  He likes to collect all his "toys of the moment" each night and put them on his bookcase.  Mason loves books, and recently has tolerated Ayden reading his nightly readers to him.  He repeats the words right back to Ayden each time.  Mason is a true leader for Reid.  I have seen a managerial side of Mason shine through in the last few months that is quite comical (somewhat like looking into a mirror that takes you back 25 years).  Mason is quick to spend time with Reid, but also quick to guide him in what to do.  You know the- don't go there, come here, don't do that, play with this, get out of there, kind of guiding.  It is rather amusing to see Mason hone in on anything Reid is doing and quickly manage the tasks!  Mason is an adventurous and talkative little man.  I know that he will succeed in perfect ways as he goes through the next few years!
3. Reid.  Really Reid.  Life with a 1 year old is never dull.  He is into everything, and in love with ME!  It is a tad bit consuming, but rather appropriate after raising two sons who ripped away from their Momma at the age of 1 and straight to their Daddy!  While it tires me each day, I really cannot get enough.  Reid has recently started a two-day a week mother's day out class, and he is really loving it.  He has the social skills of his oldest brother, and the sweet and pleasing skills from his other brother.  He seems to be always smiling (unless of course I am trying to shift him to one nap a day and it happens to be between 5 and 6pm).  He moves a MILE A MINUTE, and I am not kidding.  The kid is like lightening, running almost everywhere he goes.  He doesn't seem to have a care in the world.  His vocabulary is growing and consists of Momma, more, Beboo (Elmo), Daddy, Doggy, Adyen and a few others that are in my mind at the moment.  He grasps almost every concept, walking nicely to his room when you tell him it is time to go night night (with me of course) and runs to the door when it is time to go bye-bye!  He plays rough and tumble with his brothers, and screams at them when they close a door to play legos on the other side.  He eats fruit like you had never fed the child.  Frequently his meals consist of only fruit.  I find myself watching him often and wondering what God has in store for this little being.  What does he look like in one or two years.  All I know is I can't wait, but then sometimes I can and I just soak in all of his babyness!
4. Glenn!  I can't leave out my hubby, as he consumes me each day as much as the little men we are growing into big men.  This has been a growing year for Glenn and I.  We are getting real on several topics, and both of us are really working hard.  My husband is there for me, pitching in and getting down and dirty with responsibilities right along with me.  I am proud of the work that he has done for himself and our family this year, and smile deep down when I think that I get to grow old with this man!
5. God.  I am not sure what to write here that doesn't fill up the next several scrolls down the page.  We are at a new church that feels right for the right now.  We are reading, studying and taking time to listen to our God and what He is saying to us.  I am choosing to believe Him and His truths over the lies that Satan tells us.  This is a constant battle, and it takes work each day.  Some days I rock this out, and others I am left thinking, I can do better tomorrow!  We are in a community with an awesome group of people that are there for us no matter what, and I am so thankful that God has put us there (that will be number 6).  I am happy that I have a desire in my soul that only He can fill, and that there have been paths in my life this last year that have lined up with knowing Him better, and fulfilling that lifeline relationship.  I can't wait to see what He reveals to me in the next few years!!!!
6. Friends and Family.  Balance.  I desire to have balance.  I love our friends that I have become close to in the last year.  You have been privy to some of those great bonds in some of my posts in the last few months.  I love my family to the end of the world.  We fill our extra time (haha) with these relationships that sometimes seem to pump blood through our veins and refuel us in every way possible.  I want to balance this part of my life.  I want to have more time for my family and easier time to spend with my friends, and to do that I have to work a little harder on my number 6.  I want how important these people are to me to shine through in everything I do and each decision our family makes and where we spend our time.  I hope that in a few years if I feel drawn to another "Picture-less Friday post" I will tell you how this has worked out for me and my family of 5.

So, I leave you to slumber and move onto our busy weekend with a that little bit of our world and where I have been....

Unleashing the little football fan!

While we were away in Chicago, Ayden had a special day with Oma as her date to the Texans game.  They met up with Aunnie and Uncle Matt to tailgate pre-game!  Ayden had a terrific time, and came back a fan of football.  Oh my little boy is getting big!

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

The Windy City

Glenn, Reid and I went to Chicago in October to visit family.  It was a fantastic trip (if you don't consider that Glenn was ill almost the entire time!).  We stayed with my Aunt and Uncle, Eileen and Ross.  We were able to visit with 2 out of 3 of my cousins and my Grandma and Grandpa.  They were very excited to meet our third little man, and he was happy to be very busy and all over the place for them!  We visited with Glenn's brother and our sister in law Megan each day.  Megan cooked a wonderful birthday dinner for me, and we did a fantastic job baking some delicious cupcakes!
The visit was a welcome break to life with three kids, as two were left in caring hands of their Oma and Mimi!  Reid was more than happy to take all the attention that I offered him.  We walked through some amazing suburbs with fun shopping, ate yummy meals, saw some of God's handiwork in the foliage, and visited with family that made you feel all warm and fuzzy inside.  The north in the fall is a beautiful experience!

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Seriously, September Still???

Yes, this crazy lady is still blogging about things that happened in September.  I am not a good blogger...consistency is one of the most important parts of being a good/decent blogger, and I am not that.  Lately life has been more important.  It is important to me to catch up with life here, because I really get a kick out of looking back!

And these things in September...very very important!!!

A dear friend got married in September, and it brought great moments with terrific friends!  Courtney and her family came to stay with us, and we had a wonderful time with the kids.  Sleepovers every night, and kids playing each breathing moment.  I love having my best friend in the same zip code!

Bath and sleepover friends.  After Emma had left, Mason called Oma Emma for at least a week!  He missed his dear friend!
Beautiful Courtney and Lance
Can you see up his nose?  teehee, self portrait time!
We know how to have a great time...
Zip codes can't keep us apart!
She's got moves!!!!
Friends for a decade! Christen, Courtney, Heather, Colleen, Julie
Adding the bride and another friend!
Yes, there were that many pictures of us dancing and laughing...cause that is what we do best!
My perfect man!

The day before the Steffek's departure, they took some AWESOME family photos, and we had a very fun marshmallow roast.  The kids had a blast, and then we decided after a smore, grown up's needed to snack on some smashed cake from the photo shoot!  Seriously, you can only live once right?
 Aren't they adorable?