Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Celebrating Six {part 2}!

A couple of months ago, Tyler and Ryan took a quick trip to Target and came home with a new bike. We called it Tyler's birthday present but I knew that we'd have to come up with something for him to unwrap when his actual day of birth rolled around. I had no idea what to get him. Honestly, he's spoiled and he has everything. And the "everything" that he already has? It rarely gets played with. He'd much rather dig up worms and explore the neighborhood with his friends than play with actual toys. 

The day before his birthday because I'm a perpetual procrastinator, I set off to find a present. As I browsed the aisles of Target, I tossed an inflatable pool in the cart. I was pretty sure we didn't have one. At least not one that was 22 1/4 inches deep. As I made my way towards the checkout lane I became less sure. I called Ryan. He informed me that we already had a pool. And a slip n slide. And a half dozen water guns.

Great. Back to square one.

Just past the Lego aisle, I spotted a rocket. Like a legit "soars up to 1240 feet" model rocket. I carefully read the back of the box and determined what other "components" I needed to purchase in order to complete this awesome gift. I tossed the rocket in the cart along with a couple of "engine packs" and confidently made my way back towards the register. I checked out and $60 later, I texted Ryan to tell him about the gift.

Me: "I got him a rocket!"
Ryan: "Estes?"
I was very confused as to why my husband was speaking Spanish until I realized Estes was the brand of rocket.
Me: "Yeah...bad?"
Ryan: "No, they are fun. But he has one of those."


Needless to say, the rocket was returned and we decided to let Tyler pick out his own gift. So after our trip to the park, we headed to Toys 'r Us where we wandered the aisles for 45 minutes before Tyler settled on a {very} overpriced RC car. Ryan and I banded together, pointing out how incredibly awesome {and way less expensive} the RC boats were. Ryan showed Tyler a couple of cool YouTube videos and RC boat it was.

Next stop? The Arcade.

And then we grabbed lunch and headed home to race the boat.

After a little boat racing {during which Ryan decided we needed to return this boat and order a faster one online} we checked out a very sketchy tree swing nearby...

And Tyler climbed some trees. Typical boy.
                                                                (No hands!)

We ended the day with chocolate cake {but no birthday wish because Tyler forgot.} 
Happy 6 little man!

Sunday, May 19, 2013

Celebrating Six! {part one}

Ryan and I both took the day off of work for Tyler's birthday. We got up early, dropped Matty off at daycare and headed to the bakery for a treat. Tyler devoured a cinnamon roll, I drank three cups of coffee and Ryan spent 30 minutes trying to solve some magician handcuff trick that the waitress challenged him with.

After the bakery we swung by a nearby park where I attempted to get a few "6 year" photos of Tyler. He wanted absolutely nothing to do with it. He was much more interested in the awesome tree house, which admittedly was really cool.
Ryan and I did manage to sneak in a few with our birthday boy.

And then we raced to the cute barn down the hill where I proceeded to beg Tyler to let me get "just a couple more shots." He obliged.  For about 90 seconds.

And then? He was over it.
So we headed down to the water to explore.
Next stop? The toy store.


Wednesday, May 15, 2013


On this very day, six short years ago, you took your first breath. And with that breath, you changed our lives forever.
Sweet Tyler, I cannot believe that six years have passed. Six years since your tiny 4 pound 15 ounce self flipped my world upside down and made me a mama. It is incredibly difficult to comprehend how my baby transformed into the creative, sassy effervescent boy before me..and so ridiculously fast. When you were small, we were repeatedly told to enjoy each and every moment with you because those moments would be gone before we knew it.  And now? So many times I stop and wonder if I am doing just that. Am I slowing down enough to listen to your questions about God and street signs and the distance to the sun? Have I spent enough time playing catch with you and reading bedtime stories? Will I always remember the gold speckles in your eyes, the lone mole on your left cheek and the way you pick your blanket when you suck your thumb? I hope with all of my might that I do.
There are so many more things about your six year old self that I want to etch into my memory. Your love of books, bike rides and your baby brother. How much you love being outside. You could {and do} spend hours upon hours playing with your friends; running from house to house for snacks and juice and a fresh selection of toys. It’s no secret that you would choose being with them over Dad and I any day. Don’t worry, we moved past hurt feelings long ago.
What else? Your favorite food is grilled cheese, your favorite cartoon is Curious George and your favorite girl? Catie. You’re going to marry her. In ten weeks. Just enough time for her hair to grow a bit longer and to pick out the perfect dress. You love her. I know, because you told me {and I kind of assumed based on the fact that her name has been scrawled in green sharpie across our dryer, garage floor and every piece of artwork you bring home.} There will come a day when you don’t tell me these things. When you roll your eyes and brush me off. I dread those years.
Tyler, you’re smart. Like, wicked smart. You challenge us each and every day. You test the boundaries and you pepper our days with difficult questions. When I threaten to punish you {which happens!} you don’t cry. You don’t get angry and stomp off to your room. You look me square in the eye and ask what sort of punishment I plan to dole out. And then? You toss out ideas. You negotiate. You drive us mad.
One of my very favorite things about you is that you aren’t afraid to be you. You are loud. You are sweet. You are sensitive. You love soccer and t-ball and digging for worms. But in addition to those “boy” interests? You play house, wear pink and paint your nails. You see nothing wrong with those things and neither do we. But I know that someday there will be a kid who does. That kid will likely be four feet tall, steal your kickball at recess and make faces at you during circle time. I hope that I’m wrong. But if not? I pray that you won’t let that pipsqueak change you. I also pray that your dad and I are doing our job and that you’ll never be that kid. The one who fails to see the beauty in diversity. Because, you’re beginning to notice that not all kids are the same. Just yesterday you told me about a boy at t-ball, and then you scrunched up your face and said “he looks just like this!.” The face you made? It wasn’t cute. I tried to explain that everybody is different and it is those differences that make us special. And then I said a silent prayer that through my stuttering and stammering you were somehow able to comprehended the message I was attempting  to convey.

I think you did…I told you, you’re smart.

Tyler Jay, your dad and I are so incredibly lucky to call you ours. We love you more than words can describe.


Friday, May 3, 2013


After no fewer than 67 billion snow days, I sat at my desk at work, staring at my computer screen and contemplating how the heck I was going to survive the remainder of the winter. I quickly decided that it just wasn't going to happen. I opened up outlook, typed "WE NEED A VACATION" and hit send.  

Six weeks later, sans children, Ryan and I were on our way to spend 6 all inclusive nights in sunny Mexico. I was kind of excited. Excited for sun, sleep and most of all to spend some quality time with my favorite guy. I was SO excited I almost didn't even care that I crashed my car the night before and spent half the morning attempting to file an insurance claim over the sound of "attention travelers, now boarding flight..." while jotting notes on the back of a paper napkin.

After a few snacks, two magazines and a connection in the worst airport ever, we arrived. Paradise.

We spent the first couple of days by the pool, soaking up the sun and reveling in the silence that comes from leaving your children at home with Grandma.

Pay no attention to the low quality, grainy photos--I left my nice camera at home {laptop too!} with the intention of completely "un-plugging" and focusing on the cute guy below.

After a couple of days, a handful of fruity drinks and an excessive amount of food, we got it together and took a trip into town.
There is something to be said about uninterrupted time with your husband. A stroll along the beach without having to dole out snacks, reapply sunscreen, or wipe tantrum tears? Pretty incredible.

And the drinks weren't too bad either.

About three days in we watched as family after family checked into the resort with children in tow. Suddenly, we were surrounded by canon balls and giggling and the pitter patter of tiny feet on wet pavement. We talked about how much Tyler and Matty would love the resort and vowed to bring them along next year. Ryan started an "abduction list" that consisted of all of the kids he deemed worthy of taking home while I warned him that he was going to get us thrown in a sketchy Mexican prison. We missed our boys like crazy.

The following day we headed into town and took a van into the mountains to partake in a little zip lining. As we began suiting up I started getting nervous. And the more hills we climbed, the more nervous I got.

Usually in a situation like this, I'd try to calm my nerves by convincing myself that if it was really that dangerous, there would be some sort of law against it. But in Mexico? I'm pretty sure that's not the way it works. In an effort to be a fun wife I decided I better just suck it up and give it a shot. And I'm glad I did because we had a blast!

After we zipped all 11 lines {traditional, superman, upside down!}, we had a drink and took some time to walk around the grounds. It was gorgeous {the view and the drinks.}

We spent the next couple of days enjoying  breakfast by the pool and sunset dinners by the ocean. We read books, chatted with Canadians and did our best to avoid a sunburn.
Before we knew it, it was time to say goodbye to the sun and sand and head home. 8 hours, a sprint through the worst airport ever and one lost bag later, we arrived.

Until next year Mexico.