Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Polar Express--Nov 2011

Each Christmas season, in Branson, one of the scenic railways re-enacts scenes from the book "Polar Express". I have a friend, Hilary, that has taken her son to it many times, and her son loves it. I have always wanted to take Adriana, but with the holidays, money is just sometimes too tight to do fun things like that. We got a call saying that distant friends of ours were going to have 2 extra tickets, one adult and one child and they wanted to offer them to us. I was so happy and very grateful that I was going to be able to take Adriana on this adventure. Adriana was SO excited she couldn't hardly wait. Of course, she had never been on a train before either, so that made it all the more exciting!

The kids are suppose to dress in their PJ's, just like the kids in the book, Adriana thought it was cool to go out in public in her PJ's.
They read the book over the intercom. As you sat there riding the train, the conductor came by and punched your initials into your train ticket. Here's Adriana with the conductor.

While on board, you also got hot chocolate and a cookie (like in the book).

The train eventually made its way to the North Pole, where we picked up Santa. He came around to each boy and girl and gave out a little bell. Adriana was SO excited to get this little bell. Santa was SUPER nice and friendly. Adriana enjoyed meeting him.

We had a great time and Adriana is STILL talking about it. I had also forgotten my camera, and didn't charge my phone, so Kim was sweet enough to capture these precious moments for us and e-mail them to us. Thank you Kim!

Monday, January 16, 2012

Sweet, Growing Boy

This little guy is getting so big. He is changing more and more, right now, especially in his verbal skills. He is talking so much and saying things that are cracking us up. He is 110% boy and goes full speed ALL the time, but he has a super tender heart that is full of love. Of course, his biggest hero and friend is his Sissy. He adores her and follows her all over the place. When she is doing something tricky or something he thinks is dangerous, he always says, "Careful Sissy, Careful!". Of course, he keeps repeating it until she acknowledges him and says, "I'll be careful Paxton".
Another sweet thing is he will just come up to us, give us a hug and say, "Love you, Mommy, love you". He will go around the whole room and make sure he has told everyone that. He is also big into nose kisses, which he calls "Doot, Doot". At night, or before he lays down for a nap, or even when you tell him goodbye, he was a "Doot, Doot" followed by a cheek kiss and then a hug. It has to go in that order, and yes, no matter who is in the room, that is the order in which everyone must do it (whether he really knows you or not). He's such a loving little man.
Some of his other things he does now is, tries to stall you when you are leaving the room. The other day Ryan was getting ready for work and trying to leave the room to do so, their conversation went like this:
Ryan: "Well, I'm going to go get ready for work now"
Paxton: "Daddy!"
R: "What?"
P: "Ummm....(long pause) Clock!"
R: "I see the clock. Okay, I'm going to go get ready for work now."
P: "Daddy!"
R: "What?"
P: Ummm....(long pause) Chair!"
R: "I see the chair. Okay, I'm going to go get ready for work now."
This conversation went on for a few minutes. He really had nothing to say, but he wanted his Daddy to hang around. Of course, its cute in the middle of the day, but not in the middle of the night. He's gotten into the habit of doing this at bedtime. Adriana never went through this phase so its something new for us.
Another cute thing is that the other day he saw a picture of a picture of Joesph out of the Bible, but he thought he looked like Santa Clause. He got really excited and said, "Santa Cwause, Santa Cwause! I miss you, Santa Cwause!"
He very much wears his emotions on his sleeves. He will say, while clapping his hands, "So Happy!" or "So excited"! When he gets in trouble he lays face down on the floor and you know his feelings are hurt. He's such a tender little boy and I love to see him grow and change.
(I know us and grandparents will really care about this post, but I wanted to put down some of these things for our records. )

Friday, January 13, 2012

Shots of the Arch

Trip to STL--Oct 2011

Trying to get caught up on my blogging. I have decided that blogging is a lot like reading for me, I really have to be in the mood to sit down and do it, and over the last few months, I just haven't felt like doing it, so I'm trying to play catch up.

Back in October, we got to spend a weekend with some of our favorite people...

Ryan's family. They were nice enough to drive a long 10 hours to meet us in St. Louis. We were tickled at the idea of going somewhere "new" (at least for them), and meeting in a wonderful town like STL. I'm always thrilled to go back to there, it brings me back to my college days. I was lucky enough to go and visit my Alma ma tar, Missouri Baptist University. Let me tell you, that place has grown and changed so much, but yet it still feels like home in so many ways. I will always be thankful for the friendships that place produced, the time I spent there and the feeling of family throughout the campus. So glad I got to go back.

We were able to score a pretty awesome deal on a Hampton Inn there in Chesterfield. The kids got to go swim, we had adjoining rooms and just had a great time spending time with each other. The Saturday that we were there, we went to "The City Museum". I have been here once before in my college days, but its a lot more fun to go with kids (Ryan included) and see it through their eyes. There are TONS of nooks and crannies that kids and adults alike can crawl through, climb on or build. We spent over 6 hours in this place and didn't even see it all. As my mother in law, Sandy said, its the "Disney World of the Midwest"!

One shot of one of the rooftops you can go out and play on. You can pretty much climb, slide or hide on anything you see in this picture.

The kids have a great time climbing.

The Roller Slide.

I can't believe I let my baby go up there. From left to right, Ryan, Adriana and Jim. They were pretty high up there and Adriana wasn't scared at all.

All the cousins looking to go into one of the many ball pits.

You can just see how many stairs and things there are behind Adriana.

Paxton LOVED playing in all the blocks.

Paxton and the Sumo Wrestler. He didn't really know what to think of this big man.

Four best friends.

After the City Museum, we went by and walked around the Arch. Although I have seen it many times, I'm still awe struck whenever I am around it, and how awesome it is to see in person.

A family shot down by the Arch.

The kids playing on the iPad. Its amazing how fast kids catch onto electronics.

We had a WONDERFUL time in STL. We made a TON of memories that will last us all a lifetime. Hopefully, if we do it again, we can stay longer and see more sights. STL is a fun town to go and visit, with or without kids.

Sunday, January 1, 2012

Happy New Year-2012!!

MAN, how is it possible that it is 2012? Time just seems to slip away faster each year. I know I have slacked off so much on my blog over the last few months, life is a total whirlwind these days, and I'm waiting (and hoping) that they will slow down SOON, but I'm afraid, I might just be wishful thinking.

2011 was, overall, a pretty good year for us. God blesses us richly everyday, and we are thankful that this last year was full of blessings.

Ryan's work has kept steady all year (which isn't always the case) and he has been able to remain one of the top sales people in his job. He is a hard worker and he does an excellent job at providing for his family.

Adriana started Pre-K in the fall and LOVES it! I DREAD the thought of her going off to Kindergarten this fall. She couldn't be more excited about it (which is a good thing), but how is it that my baby is old enough to be going off to "real" school. She's so smart and is in a mode where she LOVES to write, try to read and do puzzles, she difinitely gets all those things from her Daddy!

Paxton, is well, 120% ALL boy! This busy little 2 year old, keeps me on my toes! He started Preschool this year, and (for the most part) seems to enjoy it (until he runs into me in the hallways!). He's got such a sweet, tender heart, but also has a busy, wild side that can plum wear me out at times. He's a smart little guy too and enjoys being read too. He also loves to pick on his Sissy, whom he ultimately loves and adores.

This last year has been super busy one for me. Not so much the first part of the year, but about half way through, I was asked to teach our Sunday School class (which I do love doing and am thankful for a class that is patient as I learn and develop). I also started teaching at the Preschool the kids go to. I have a busy classroom with 8 little 2 year old BOYS! They are so sweet and I'm blessed beyond measure to have this job. I also am still a discussion group leader with my MOPS group, which I enjoy too!

Life has definitely been busy. I am amazed at how God continues to care for us, day to day and how our needs are met without fail.

My hope for your family and ours, is that 2012 brings many rich blessings, good health and love from friends and family in your lives. God never promised us an easy road, but with Him by our side, we can get through the tough times. Here's to a great year, a better you (and me!) and true happiness! Happy New Year!