Monday, 1 September 2014

Saturday, 30 August 2014

Goodbye Summer

This summer has been action-packed. In order to maintain my sanity and ensure that all three boys survived the summer with no severe wrestling/fighting over toys injuries we got out of the house a great deal. I dutifully took pictures of our many activities because I intended to blog, but then I was so exhausted by the long days I never got around to it. I may do some catch-up posts (mostly because certain aunties have been clamoring for pictures), but it depends on how quickly I can scrub off the sticky film that summer has left on every square inch of my house (maybe we will cut back on popsicles next year), and whether that will be done before our CRAZY Fall schedule starts up. Sports are going to drive me into my grave.

All that to say, here are the pictures from our last day of summer. We took a nature walk at a forest preserve and then went and ate lunch with Jeff in a new spot, the new building his group is transferring too. It is a significant upgrade in terms of scenery, as we were able to eat on a cool sheltered balcony instead of the usual windowless room decorated with outdated credit union calendars. We may be visiting Daddy more often in the future!







Tuesday, 26 August 2014

And so it begins, or Le premier jour d'├ęcole

Both of the big boys started school last week and Kenny is back in "Mommy school" (although he is quite eager to go to "Tommy's school").









Wednesday, 13 August 2014

Nic Birthday Blog-O-Rama

Better late than never...Happy Birthday Nic! We had fun celebrating our middle guy turning four. He got to choose a special breakfast (he went with a Dutch baby), and we took a rare trip to the movies to see the new addition to the Planes franchise. Presents and cake topped off the day's excitement.







Nic has grown so much in the last year. Not only is he TALL, but he has slimmed down so much in the face and looks so "boy" now - no more chubby toddler cheeks. He has been incredibly healthy so far this calender year, and it has been nice to go such a long stretch between hospital visits. Since he feels great, he was able to take swimming lessons this summer and is really looking forward to playing soccer in the fall. He will return to preschool when the school year starts up, and considering how much he flourished there last year we expect to seeing a great deal of growth socially and verbally this year. It has been such a joy to get to know him the more he is able to express himself, and I have been so blessed by his tender, comforting heart. When I'm sad there is nothing sweeter than hearing Nic whisper in my ear that he misses his Jjaja too.

Nic is a boy who is all about Cars (as in Lighting McQueen and friends), and it has been neat to watch his play expand to story telling, and I love watching him make-up games like "tractor tipping" (he pretends to be a sleeping tractor and then tips over when Tommy honks at him). The boy loves listening to music and is constantly trying to put something on. His favorite music is our VBS CD on endless repeat, second runner up is an annoying toddler songs disc; my only sanity saver is the occasional (too brief) Slugs and Bugs interruption. He also has a passion for sports, and loves to play tennis out front or get coached at Tommy's football camp in the backyard. We are so proud of our sweet guy and what a kind, compassionate, responsible boy he is growing up to be.

Tuesday, 12 August 2014

T-Ball

So, with Summer nearly over, it seems we've got a bit of catch up to do. Between kickball games in the cul-de-sac, tennis in the driveway, and football clinics in the back yard, we've had quite the sports-filled Summer. Among the (nominally) more organized activities, Tommy and I got to play T-ball with the Green [Teenage Mutant Ninja] Turtles. Tommy had a great time - he's a natural ball player, and as usual an even more natural showman. I enjoyed getting to coach.





Saturday, 12 July 2014

Eating Brats, or Family Vacation in WI

Last week we had a big "Cox" family vacation, but this time it was in our neck of the woods. We all met up In Wisconsin, in the town where Mike (Emily's husband) has family. It was fun to be in a new place with someone who knew it well. Mike knew all the best places to go (and what we should avoid), and it was neat to be introduced to his favorite meat shop and to hear family stories about spider tunnels and fishing. Not everyone could make it for the entire week, but by the Third we were all together.

We had a blast floating, tubing, boating, water skiing (some people), kayaking, fishing, jumping on the water trampoline, doing puzzles, winning every single game night (if you were a woman - we dominated), eating brat after brat after delicious cheese-stuffed brat, playing Foosball, and hanging out on the dock. There also seemed to be some kind of soccer tournament thing on the television, but I'm not sure. It was wonderful to be together and spend some quality time just hanging out and having fun (and eating brats). We came home fifteen pounds of fine Wisconsin sausage heavier (frozen in a cooler), sun-kissed, tired, and happy. Vacations are the best...except for the unpacking!


Tommy was proud of the United States puzzle we completed.


Pinball!


Tommy took several turns tubing with Aunt Emily


Fishing with Uncle Mike



Cuddle time with Mike and Emily's new baby Islay


Cousin JP!


Enjoying a boat ride


Fresh, homemade strawberry pie. Mmmmm, pie...


Tubing with Daddy


Nicolas is apparently unsure about the bow


There were never such devoted sisters...


Cousins!


Auntie Katie and Cousin Owen


Boat ride with Mommy


Riding with Papa


Uncle Kevin and Auntie Colleen floating with JP!


The family that floats together...


Nicolas!


Trampoline!


Face painting with Auntie Emily for the Fourth






Take that, Terry Redlin puzzle - Emily and Jeff


Sparklers!


U-S-A, U-S-A! (watching Uncle Kevin's firework extravaganza)


Uncle Kevin, conjuror of fire


Kenny loved tubing with Auntie Colleen


Hang on tight


Nicolas made this face the whole time


Thumbs up, ready to go!



The whole crew


A proud Papa and his grandsons