Monthly Archives: April 2011

Easter Sunday 2011

Easter this year was a ton of fun.  We went to the Sunrise Service at church, found Easter baskets, hunted eggs, played outside and enjoyed a fabulous dinner with great friends.  And the weather was perfect!  I don’t think we could have asked for a better Easter!

For the past few years we have attended the Sunrise Service at church.  The service is at 7am, is held on the front lawn of the church and features a blue grass band for the music.  Everyone brings lawn chairs or blankets and they have donuts and coffee during the service.  It is so great.  Although we neglected to grab lawn chairs from our real house, I did remember I had my yoga mat in the car.  It worked perfectly!  We also remembered to bring GF donuts for Jack so we could all enjoy a special treat for breakfast.  Not that we would need anymore special treats added into our day, but it isn’t very often that Mama relents and lets the kiddos indulge in sweet treats!  The only thing we forgot was to bring bread so Jack could take communion.  He is usually in Sunday School during the service, so it hadn’t really occurred to us that he can’t take communion since it is real bread.  Something we will have to work out before summer when his Sunday School is on break and he attends the service with us regularly.  He was a little disappointed that he couldn’t take communion but he handled it well.  G didn’t want to take communion but then once we got all the way through the line and it was almost over he decided he did want it.  Really he was just bored and wanted to do something.  We got through it and enjoyed the service immensely.  The kids loved the music and Jack danced to all the music.  We were pretty front and center, so he even got a shout out from the pulpit as a future dancer.  He beamed with pride when he realized that our pastor was referring to him!

After church we came home and the boys found their Easter baskets.  The Easter Bunny left them on the dining room table but the boys didn’t want to know where they were.  They wanted to find them.  I guess the Easter Bunny needs to remember that they like to hunt for the baskets too and hide them next year.  Following suit to last year, Garrett went straight for the candy in the eggs while Jack checked out what all was in the basket.  Jack opened some candy eggs too, but his first thought is always the stuff while G is always looking for the sweets!

We headed out to the backyard to look for the eggs the Easter Bunny had hidden.  The boys did a good job hunting eggs.  They worked together well and helped each other find eggs.  They really do love to play together and are always making sure each of them gets an equitable share of things.  I hope they continue with that sentiment.  It is super sweet to watch.

The boys were pretty excited to play with their new little toys in their baskets, so they quickly got caught up in doing a puzzle, reading with Daddy and then playing bubbles.  They spent the better part of two hours playing bubbles outside.  They had a blast.  It didn’t hurt that the weather was spectacular and for the first day in a while they could just be outside playing.  Bubbles were certainly the hit of the basket.  Glad the Easter Bunny picked those up at the last minute at Target!

We had Easter dinner with our friends Vince and Marcy.  They invited us to their house in the late afternoon for dinner.  Marcy made a great ham and of course we all indulged in plenty of yummy food.  The kids and dogs, Denver got to come too, played outside all afternoon and into the evening.  Travis was watching the score on a hockey game, so in the end the kids ate outside and the parents ate while watching hockey.  I’m not sure I should admit that, but we all enjoyed it!  It is so nice to have friends that we can get together with and just be casual.  Our kids all play well together and the occasional fight is easily resolved.  Even better, it is generally resolved with little parent intervention.  I feel like hanging out with Vince and Marcy and their kids is one of the few times that I don’t have to be as on edge with my kids.  I’m not a hovering parent but my kids can be overwhelming to other kids and parents too.  Jack is intense, talks all the time and FULL of energy.  Garrett is more laid back but he can be just as loud and energetic at times.  I always am on guard to make sure they keep their activity down a bit with other kids or at other people’s houses, but when we hang out with Vince and Marcy it isn’t like that.  The kids personalities balance each other out.  And if something happens I know that everyone can discipline appropriately, so I don’t have to worry that my kid got blamed for something he didn’t do or didn’t get in trouble for something he started.  It just always works out the right way without issues.  On a Holiday where I am thankful for the resurrection and celebration of life, it is fitting to spend it with such good friends.  Thanks guys for having us over!  It was a perfect ending to a wonderful Easter!

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Backyard Egg Hunt Part 2

And another…

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Backyard Egg Hunt Part 1

A not so quick video of the boys hunting for eggs in the backyard.

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For the Family…Coloring Eggs Video

Disclaimer:  If you aren’t related to my kids, you probably have zero interest in watching them dye Easter Eggs.  However, if you are a grandparent or aunt or some other relation to us and you just can’t get enough of my crazy kiddos then knock yourself out.  This is a snippit of our egg coloring.

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Coloring Easter Eggs

On Saturday morning we colored Easter Eggs as a family.  For the second year in a row Mom wasn’t really thinking and bought brown eggs.  Doh!  Luckily, I had 3/4 of a dozen white eggs in the fridge.  I boiled up all my white eggs and some of the brown so the boys would each have a dozen eggs to dye.  Hopefully after this I will remember to get white eggs!

Both boys enjoyed coloring eggs.  We bought a traditional Paas color kit and then also got an egg stamping kit.  The stamping kit didn’t really work as stamps but it did work to just color the eggs.  G loved the regular dyes, mainly because he liked dropping the eggs in the cup.  Yes, he literally dropped them.  We had to do lots of helping so we wouldn’t have dye everywhere and broken eggs!  Jack actually loved painting the eggs.  It was great too, because it meant that the brown ones got a deeper color and turned out fine.  The regular dye wasn’t too successful on the brown eggs unless you used blue.  At least they are little and they don’t care!

A side note on the egg coloring.  We noticed that none of our egg colors held up to the dew in the grass this year.  They all seemed to run and get messy.  My poor egg salad had tinges of blue in green from the dye that seeped through when the kids cracked the eggs on their hunt.  Oddly enough, I heard at least two other friends complain about the same thing.  I’m wondering if they changed the dye this year??  So strange!

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The Circus

Recently the circus was in town.  For the past few years we have planned to make it to the circus but for some reason have had a conflict.  This year when we realized the circus was coming, we made plans to go.  Our week had been really crazy dealing with our house and Jack had been sick but we were determined to go to the circus.  Travis ended up getting tickets for a great deal to opening night on Craigslist.  Our seats were awesome and even though Jack was still feeling cruddy from nasty allergies, we all had a fabulous time.

This was the first time to the circus for me and the boys.  I remember going to the very small version of the circus that came to Alturas a few times when I was little but it was nothing like the real circus.  I think I was as excited as the kids were.  The animals were a big hit with both boys.  Garrett loved the trapeze artists and Jack thought the motorcycles riding inside the sphere was pretty neat.  I’ve got to be honest, the trapeze artists made me a little nauseous.  All the flipping and catching the bar was a little more than I could handle.  I’m not usually one to get worried or queasy over things like that, but it sort of freaked me out.  I enjoyed the show but, ugh, I’m not sure about the trapeze!

I’m quite sure there were two highlights to the night for the boys.  First off, when the show was about to start and we were heading to our seats an usher handed us flashing clown noses.  Garrett wore the clown nose almost the entire night.  He loved it.  Off and on, off and on.  He played with it the whole time he watched the show.  It was super cute.  Jack liked his too, but since part of his not feeling well was a yucky nose, I don’t think he was as much of a fan of actually wearing the nose.  The other big deal of the night was that we let them each have  a snow cone in a special take home clown cup.  We are pretty strict about food, so a treat like that was a huge deal!  Both boys were covered in an array of syrup colors and luckily only ate about 1/3 of the giant snow cone.  The cups are adorable and I’m sure will get lots of use this summer with ice cream.

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Soccer for Garrett

After nearly a year of begging, we finally signed Garrett up for soccer.  I’d been looking for a program for a while but was having a hard time finding something in our area that allowed kids under 3 years old.  All the programs that I could find seemed to be either parent coached, like kickball, where you pay to have your kid go every Saturday morning for 6 weeks to literally kick a ball with other kids their age or they just weren’t near us.  I saw on Facebook that some friends had signed their son, Oliver, up for a soccer class and he is only a few months older than G.  Turns out the class is at a park about 2 minutes from our rental house, is on Saturday mornings and is actually skill  based.  The skill based part is important to me.  If we are going to pay for our kids to play some sort of sport as toddlers, I feel strongly that they should at least start to learn real skills for the game.   Otherwise, why am I paying for it?  We can take a soccer ball to a park and run around with friends for free.  We don’t need to pay someone to tell us what time to be at a park for that!

Earlier last week Travis took Garrett out to get all his new soccer gear.  This was a huge deal.  First off, anytime G gets to be alone with his Dad is super special.  Travis spends tons of time with the  boys but usually it is with both of them or sometimes with Jack.  Just because of logistics, it is less often that Garrett and Travis get to do something alone.  The other super exciting part of going with Daddy to pick out soccer gear was that Jack doesn’t get soccer gear.  This is a class just for Garrett.  Jack has hockey right now, so we won’t allow him to pick up other activities.  For the first time ever, G gets to do something that his brother can’t.  Even bigger bonus, Jack has to come watch his brother for a change!  So after a rather long trip to Target, Daddy and G returned with soccer socks with built-in shin guards, new shorts and a soccer ball.  Garrett was so excited.  It was adorable.  All week he was asking if it was his soccer day.  By the time Saturday morning came, he was up at 6am ready to go!

The soccer practice itself was fine.  It was a little disorganized but Garrett loved it.  The age group is 2 and 3 year olds.  I would guess that his class runs on the younger side, though it is hard to tell.  Our kids tend to be very verbal for their ages, so sometimes it is hard for us to determine if other kiddos are close to their age or not.  There was a lot of parent participation this week, which I don’t think any of us were anticipating.  I guess with kiddos that small, it does help to have a parent reinforcing the directions for the drill and just keep kids where they are supposed to be.  The class is 45 minutes which is pretty long.  It felt REALLY long on Saturday because it was pretty darn cold.  I actually felt a little guilty that I hadn’t dressed him warm enough.  Who knew you would need more than sweatpants, long-sleeved shirt and heavy sweatshirt for soccer in March in DC?!  Anyway, the skill drills the kids did were cute.  There was lots of running around and the coach was good at keeping the kids attention.  One of the last games they played was essentially freeze tag.  Garrett was picked to be the kid to chase and tag the other kids.  He was very proud to be going first but clearly didn’t understand the game.  When his coach told him to go, he just took off running as fast as he could.  Travis had to run him down and help him to start tagging other kids.  It was hysterical.  Of course, he could have cared less.  He was just so proud that he got to be first and that he got to run!

G’s first soccer class was fun.  He and Oliver both did really well and are two of the most coordinated kids in the class.  They both had a blast and were so proud.  It was adorable when they were waving goodbye to each other after class.  We are all looking forward to the boys seeing each other every Saturday and to see how the soccer class goes.

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