Tuesday, January 12, 2016

Dressember...Man Style

When Cliff and I talk about what our kids will do when they're grown we dream about Ryla being some ultra talented executive who finds a productive and healthy way to exercise her desire for things to be done her way. We laugh about Noah being an entrepreneur because he just has to do things his way. And when we talk of Aidan's future, we're confident it will involve something along the lines of being in the Peace Corp, running a non-profit, or being a modern day St. Francis of Assisi. 

We have good reason to come to this conclusion. Here's an example of how we get this idea. For the month of December, Mom and Ryla participated in Dressember. This is where ladies where dresses for an entire month to raise awareness and funds to fight human trafficking. Aidan overheard Mom explaining this to Ryla and was troubled that he couldn't participate. 

Of his own accord and with no prompting or direction from any adult influences, Aidan asked if he could open up his drink stand to serve hot chocolate. He said he wanted to donate all of his money from selling drinks so that the little girls didn't have to be slaves! Seriously?! 

The kid ended up raising around $150 over the course of the month. On one hand, we're like, "Yay, we're so proud of our little guy!" But on the other hand, we're like, "Kid, stop making mom and dad feel guilty for not be as selfless and altruistic as our 7 year old child!" 


Tuesday, January 5, 2016

It's Christmas Time

November and December is crazy for everyone. However, in our house, those months bring 2 birthdays, 3 major holidays, and an anniversary. This means we cram an obnoxious amount of good times into these two months. The kickoff to the season this year was getting the lights up on the house. Things went much quicker this year (and by quicker I mean slower) thanks to the addition of three "helpers." They each had a job to do while on the roof. Noah brought dad each new strand of lights, Aidan was responsible for the zip ties, and Ryla was on clipper duty so dad could trim the ends of the zip ties. 

What is Christmas without eggnog with good friends. This crew of 7 always has a great time together. And their good times usually end to two sets of very tired parents. But they're just so cute!
And how could we forget about the school programs. Ryla switched Preschools at the end of her semester. She was done early enough with one school that she could make the program for the new school. She had only been to school there one day, but that didn't stop her from finding her way to the spotlight with her bestie Adalyn. 
So Noah was an "angel" for his program. What's completely ironic about this role is that when he's at school he really is an angel. He's the kid in class that drives everyone else nuts because he's so good. We've learned to use this to our advantage, though. Whenever he's having a particularly devlish day at home, we just tell him we're going to call his teachers. He miraculously changes his little attitude immediately.

It's pretty normal for someone in our family to get sick around this time of year. Between the kiddos being little and the incredible pace at which we live during this season, it's inevitable that someone comes down with something. This year Aidan was the one whose lucky number came up. Three days before Christmas he got slammed by Strep. Since he's super tough, though, he was back to 100% in less than 24 hours.
When Christmas Eve rolled around it was time to make some Santa cookies. Again, the three little "helpers' really streamlined the process....

And of course we had to take a trip to see Santa.

Since we've moved to Austin we've adopted the tradition of a Christmas Eve service. Because of it's proximity to Christmas morning it's pretty easy to coerce the kids to get dressed up and smile for pictures. We're still not really sure what we'll do when they figure out the whole Santa myth.
By all accounts we had a fantastic Christmas season. We've got one more birthday coming up in January before we enter our "Ordinary" season. Thanks to all our friends and family who have made this a great time of year.


Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Days

Noah is awesome. We love this little guy and his big personality. He's that stereotypical strong willed kid that never really makes things easy. He has a good heart under his rebellion and defiance. And once he reaches the age where he's no longer a danger to himself he'll be good to go. The events that led to the picture below depict a typical day with this little animal. 

So mom and Noah are headed home from running some errands. As they near the house, Noah starts in with his usual string of "I want..." comments. These rants tend to be lengthy, passionate, and explosive. On this particular day he listed off a series of things that he wanted to do and mom responded by letting him know that he could do those later, but first he needed to head to quiet time.

Predictably, Noah takes the situation to Defcon 1 by informing his mother that she is a "mean mommy." Mom makes the appropriate show of force, offered in the form of promises of time out time for being mean. 

As mom pulls into the driveway, she is assaulted by screams and cries emanating from Noah's seat. She calmly opens his door and unbuckles his car seat. At the exact moment of his release from the confines of his seat, Noah launches himself out of the van, sprints across our yard toward the Neighbors house. He runs full out until he reaches their bushes. Without warning he comes to a crashing halt, drops his pants, and proceeds to pee ALL OVER THE NEIGHBORS BUSHES!!!!!!

This series of choices ended badly for Mr. Noah. After sever disciplinary actions were taken, he finally reached felt the emotion of remorse. And thus, we are offered this serene picture of a repentant child, promising to never do this again... or at least until mom and dad have irritated him forget his promise.