Sunday, March 09, 2008

Piersen is Turning 1!!!

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Before you begin: Please note there is an excess of pictures to capture these special moments for family who can't be here with us.

Although Piersen's birthday is March 12, we decided to celebrate with cake today (we will be travelling on Wednesday). As you can see, "rubber ducky" was our party theme. Pierce loves to be in his bath and so it was appropriate to honor him with a tubby type of party. And...his big brothers (and Daddy) are crazy about jell-o, so everyone was happy! The little duckies were a big hit for all the kids as each one took theirs outside to "play".

He was a funny little boy today. You will see from the progression of pictures how his emotions went up & down. I think everyone looking at him and singing to him kind of freaked him out - he cried a little - then calmed down when the cake arrived...and dug right in. But...all that ooey, gooey icing on his hand made him cry again...until he got a taste! The boy ate almost the entire piece and had a lot of fun playing with his yellow balloons.



"you think all of that is for me?!?"

"oh boy, why is everyone looking at me??"

"enough already...I am feeling a little overwhelmed!"

"what is this gooey stuff?"

"okay, is pretty tasty!"

"good stuff!"

full to the top with sugar...

...and happy about it!!

traditional family birthday picture!


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the Happy Birthday Boy - oh what a little nap won't do!!!

We are so thankful for our little Piersen. He is special in so many ways - we love his fun personality and the brightness he brings to every day. As a Mom of three little boys, I am very thankful for how easy-going he is. He has made a smooth transition into our family and has blessed us tremendously. It has been a wonderful year! Reece and Chase are much better boys because of the presence of their little brother...and we are better too. His little life has changed us all. Piersen Benjamin, we love you so much. Happy birthday "handsome bandsome"!

And if you still haven't had enough - ha,ha - and want to see even more pics, click to this link:
Piersen's 1st Birthday

Saturday, March 08, 2008

Cute Reece Story

A few months ago, our very good friends, Scott & Melissa Smith, gifted us their college car so that we could save on gas, wear & tear from Mexican streets, etc.. It has been a HUGE blessing to us and also to Reece! Reece LOVES this car and thinks it is the coolest thing in the world. The first time Benjy gave him a ride to school in it he said, "Daaaad, this car is AWESOME! This is gonna be my school car and you can use the van for work!" A few weeks later, I rode in the car with Reece. With extreme excitement he said to me, "Moooommmmm - you've never been in this car. Look at this! If you wanna roll the window down, look, look, you hafta turn this thing around and round!" (translation: there isn't power windows so it is the "old-fashioned" way!!!) It made me realize that maybe I am getting older when my little kid has never seen the things I grew up with as normal!

Thursday, March 06, 2008

Ladies Morning Out

We decided that us women needed some fun time together and so the planning began... We began to talk about going out for breakfast and heading to the movies while the kids were in school. The inviting began and, I must say, I thought the reponses were so entertaining. Every friend or neighbor I spoke to had this look of - are you serious, of course I am coming! I think that it is a much needed thing for all of us as Mom's...but maybe especially moreso for Mexican women. They generally stay tied to their domestic duties quite tightly and it almost seemed like they needed the invite from someone outside of their own culture to even consider doing something like this!! I wish you could have seen their excitement - it was like a group of little schoolgirls! 14 of us enjoyed a great chick flick "P.S. I Love You" I cried some good tears and had a great time. Please pray that God might use this little idea to create some new relationships amongst Mexican women and that in His timing God might create a hunger for spiritual things amongst this group.

Sunday, March 02, 2008

Close Ups

I love to take close up pics of my boys...capturing certain expressions or smiles that show who they are. I also like to record the little things that communicate what stage they are in. I haven't done this in a long time and so it is long overdue...

Piersen 11 months


Little Pierce is now crawling! He has been at it for a few weeks and it is amazing how quickly, once he figured it all out, he has advanced. There is no place safe for him - he hasn't figured out stairs or how to maneuver down them (and since we have one step in our living room it is trouble!) He also likes holding your fingers and walking (grandma taught him this) and is not interested in sitting down until HE is ready - he just stiffens his entire body. He likes to feel like a big boy - sitting on Chaser's tricycle or swinging outside in the swing. He loves to be outside. He loves to close and open doors or drawers and has discovered the tv cabinent - and most especially the DVD's. He has pinched his fingers in the drawer and has bumped his head several times on the floor after slipping on the slippery tile (or receiving a little encouragement from big brother Chase to move a bit faster!). He still has NO teeth but is continually sucking on his upper or lower lip (maybe they are on their way...who knows with this boy!). Pierce almost always has a huge smile on his face - he is a very happy little guy and his smile fills his entire face and lights up the whole room. It is really easy to make him laugh - especially with even the slightest of tickles. He is fun! He is discovering how to bang things and throw stuff and he spends much of his play time doing just that. He is enamored with his big brothers and watches their every move. He is beginning, though, to get a bit bugged if someone takes away something he wants. Pierce is still a good sleeper - although now that he is more mobile he is beginning to fight that second nap. I often find him playing in his crib to delay his sleep. He is a good eater but if he doesn't want something, he will let ya know you - quick to spit it out and quiver his whole body! He is also into spitting out his milk or juice and making a nice big mess by tipping the sippy cup everywhere. You can't keep a bib dry on this boy. I love it that now he pats my back when I pick him up or cuddle him. He is the sweetest and most content little baby - I can't believe he is nearly 1 year old. Where has the time gone?

Chase 3 years, 3 months


Chase is really growing up. He talks a lot now and really sounds like a big boy. He loves to jump and climb and play in dirt. He likes to make a mess and is not quite as quick about cleaning it up. Water is a joy to him. He spends hours in his little bath tub - but just to play - getting his hair and body washed isn't important to him! He hates to get out of the tub because it is cold. He also likes to play in the sink, or with the faucets outside. He is into imaginative play and can entertain himself for a long time. Cars are often his toys of choice, although he likes animals and balls too. He continues to get a thrill from throwing things in the air (and then taking the broom outside to shake the item out of the tree or bush). If you ever need to find this kid - he is probably standing in front of the refrigerator. Chaser wants to eat non-stop and usually eats well. He is really enjoying books these days - and usually says, "read it again". He also is taking more and more of an interest in coloring and drawing. He does not want to go to school though. Lately, he wants to do everything at his own pace....he does not understand "hurry" and he doesn't always stay on task with the instructions he is given. He is mischieveious and if ever left alone for a short while, you can be certain he is into something. He has a mind of his own and responds much better to reason and logic than direct orders (there is a bit of resistence to much in this boy these days). In the area of discipline - he keeps his parents on their toes and forces us to be creative. He sleeps pretty good but is not a stranger to wandering into our bed at night with his little voice of "i just want you to seep with me for a yittle bit". He has trouble pronouncing his "s"'s when they are followed by a consanant - so we hear lots of "downtairs" and "top" it and "tand up". The first goal of Chase's day is to check if little Pierce is awake - he is impatient for him to wake from naps and loves to play with him. He gets along well with big brother Reece too - they are either best of friends or on each others nerves, but they do well to exchange lots of apologies and hugs in a day. Chaser likes to be outside and is eager to move up to a real bicycle. Chase likes blue. Chase likes to help do things around the house (if there isn't more fun to be had elsewhere!)He can be very sweet and is free with his expressions of "i love you so much". He is a great hugger and has a smile and a twinkle in his eyes that can melt your heart. He is a really good kid - active and fun and has a deep, warm laugh.

Reece 4 years, 11 months


Reece is a helper my nature. He helps around the house and with his little brothers so much that at times I have to remind myself that he is only 4. He loves to be involved in what is going on at home. He is a very, very good big brother to both Chase and Pierce. He often willingly sacrifices things (like the blue cup, or the last yoghurt, etc..) to keep peace. He plays super well with Pierce and is very gentle and patient with him (although now that Pierce is moving a bit more both of the older boys think he should be ready to wrestle soon!). Reece is a good teacher - he likes to show his brothers how to do things and what things mean. I love to listen in on conversations he has with Chase. They play well together most of the time but Reece sometimes struggles with being too nice. Chase has a stronger personality and is still in toddler mode - so Reece is often too quick to give in and let Chase have the control or the power. Reece is protective of Chaser and is always looking out for him when they are out playing with the neighborhood kids. Reece has grown leaps and bounds in his self confidence and his outgoing-ness. He is quick to make friends and is really speaking spanish with ease. He likes school and has changed a lot in that environment as well - he is a lot more comfortable and not as shy as he was at the start of the year. He likes to learn and is quite creative. He loves to draw and is good at it. He is learning to read and write and takes pride in his work. He is outgrowing his bike and has put many a mile on that thing. He loves to be outside too and spends lots of time out there. Reece is struggling with "tummy troubles" these days so we are investigating a possible milk allergy or lactose intolerance. He has been cooperative and I think it is helping. The boy loves to eat too - always wanting to snack. Reece is a sensitive and compassionate little boy and just seems aware of others around him and what they need. He is dependable and gets himself ready (which has been such a blessing!) He is mature and such a good kid.

We love our boys and thank God for each of them... Father, thank You for the beautiful children you have placed in our lives. We ask for wisdom to raise them well - in You - with patience and grace and with discernment to know what each of them need. Heighten our perceptions as parents - that we would be aware of their strengths and weaknesses - that we would discipline and nurture them according to their uniqueness. Thank You for creating them each so wonderfully - they are a blessing in every way. Give me, as a Mom, tenderness, firmness, gentleness and so much graciousness. I entrust each of them to Your protection and care. Help me to enjoy each day with them and the true gift it is to be at home with them each day. In Jesus name, Amen