Saturday, February 8, 2014

mother/son rodeo 2014

We had a mother/son rodeo at church last Friday (or our gang banquet as Katie called it). This was supposed to be last November, but I had to postpone because of dissertation. (If I had a dollar for everything that has been pushed off because of that thing! But I digress and it's almost over!) We got some great help setting up Friday morning from our friends Katie and Olivia, and this time got the set up done with enough time to not be rushed during Todd and I's date.

the set up gang

love this kid!

We went to Chickfila, mostly because I knew he would eat the food and it was close to the church. After eating our grub we headed up to the Mayfair ranch. We had several moms, and an aunt, and some grandmas join us with their cowboys. All the boys were close in age so it made it easier to do the activities and they got along really  well.  It was a really fun night!

My cute date!

This is the fourth parent/kid night and I by this time I figured out get the photos in early or it won't happen. Everyone just gets busy and it gets forgotten about. So as soon as the moms got there I got them to visit the photo booth. I have the parents write letters to their child during the event that usually goes with the theme or as a memoir of the night. While they're doing this they visit with someone who has an older child of the same gender for advice. I take the kids and make a special survey or gift for the parents. And then mail the photos, letters, and surveys after the event to the child for a keepsake.

Katie put together the great background for our photo booth. For the rodeo photo booth we had bandanas, hats, mustaches, beards, lips, sherif badges, and a wanted sign as props.

this kid is definitely wanted!

Our dessert for the evening was root beer and milk, a "happy trails" mix the families could make, and making pie pops together. I thought cooking would be a good activity for moms to do with their boys and pie is a western kind of dessert. I would say forget about the candy sticks next year, and just call them pie pockets because the sticks really didn't work very well. I think the boys had more fun just making them and didn't even care of eating them.

the saloon

"happy trails" mix

the tables
make your own mustache
the "rodeo" activities
the "bucking bronco" or "bull riding" inflatable

stick horse races

rounding up lizards

calf roping

ping pong ball shootout

the results

Thursday, February 6, 2014

elle's sleepover plans

One day Elle started talking about this sleepover she was planning. I have no idea where she got the idea. She had a list of friends to invite, and all the activities even centers. (I thought that was cute!) At first I just thought she just was playing, but then several days later she kept talking about it, and asking when we were going to have it. I decided maybe that would be fun, but knew I couldn't handle a bunch of kids by myself. I thought a mom/kid sleepover sounded like a better idea. On short notice, our friends Katie and Olivia, and Jenna and Noah willingly agreed to come over for a Friday night sleepover. We had snacks, played vintage board games, chatted, played with toys, and watched a movie. Those kids stayed up late (except Todd)! The other moms and kids stayed in the lounge on the extra couches and mattresses, and then we had breakfast and played some more in the morning. Elle had an absolute blast, and I was so touched by our friends making her dreams come true! Elle started talking today about another sleepover so I guess we need to hurry up and get into the house so we have plenty of time before the new baby comes.

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

i'm officially a soccer mom

I guess it was inevitable once we got the suv and started having more kids that I'd end up here. But, Elle and Todd really enjoy playing soccer. Originally, I thought it would be good to sign them up because Todd would like it more than gymnastics, because his favorite thing to do there is play with the balls, and he loves sports. I also thought this would be a good way for me to get some exercise while doing something with the kids. So I checked out Soccer City online and signed them up. They play on two sections of a big field next to each other so I can watch what Elle's doing while "helping" Todd in the parent/tot class. Elle has surprised me and absolutely LOVES playing! I think more than Todd most of the time. They have games and exercises that the kids do with their coach to teach them the skills, so it feels more like play time. I like that it's indoors! If you can, you should check out the facility sometime. It's pretty amazing. Chris got to go with us one afternoon so it gave me a good chance to take some pictures. For some reason Elle was the only one in her class that day.

Saturday, February 1, 2014

elle and todd february 2014

Elle has been busy this month making plans. Her mind is working all the time and she has concocted lots of ideas. This included plans for the new house, cutting out pictures for different letters, and her most elaborate this month was for a sleepover. She's so sweet to Todd, loves playing with him, and is thoughtful of things he would like or letting him pick things first. She's often heard calling him sweety or baby, which makes my heart swell that they have such a close and loving relationship. I pray that the new baby has a loving spot in their little group. She did come up with a name for the baby if it's a boy. Remember it's "Fifi" for a girl, but after reminding her that it may not be a girl she decided on "Lettuce" for a boy. I have no idea why she thinks this is a good name. She's getting really good at sounding out words, and is so sharp about picking up on things! She learned to play a Mario game on the Wii, and likes to watch Doc McStuffins and Dinosaur Train this month. She's been learning to play checkers, and really wants to learn how to play chess. We stayed two nights at the new house and Elle loved it! I think she'll do well with the transition.

Todd has started talking less like a cave man and more like Stitch. I've become his interpreter for Chris. Todd decided to give up high chairs over the last month, and we took the side off his crib to make it a toddler bed. He's having a lot of trouble still sleeping through the night, but instead of throwing a fit, and getting too worked up to go back to sleep he just comes and gets one of us and we walk him back to bed. He LOVES sports! One of his favorites right now is football. He loves keeping up with Elle and talks about her the most. He's so loving to Mops as well. He had a bit of a rough transition back to school after Christmas because he lost both of his teachers, and got two new ones. Being out the last week of school for sickness then the holidays just made it that much more rough. But he's bounced back in the last week and is warming up to the new teachers. He's so active! On the go and into everything! He's learning to say his prayers, and we can make out everyone's name and "amen". He loves playing on iPad or iPod, and will try and swipe the screen on my laptop. I got to go on a date night with Todd the last night of January to our Mother/Son Rodeo. It's so special when I get times just with him. He was such a sweet and fun date!