Saturday, May 6, 2017

Georgia's 6th birthday - Part 1

Last weekend, Georgia turned 6.  I know it's super cliche, but I really am amazed at how fast these 6 years have passed.  My timehop app has been in overtime this past week bringing me back to her first 5 birthdays.

1st birthday

The famous Bubble Guppies 2nd birthday party (STILL the most searched google term that brings people to this blog!)

The Minnie Mouse 3rd birthday party

Georgia's Paw Patrol 4th birthday party

For birthday #5, we finally moved the party OUT of our house since I was tired about worrying about weather and having 20+ children running around my house... especially while 24 weeks pregnant with Grant!

Georgia's 5th birthday party (sort of princess themed?!?!) at My Little Gym

This year... it was all about the Shopkins!  We debated hosting at our house again, but the worry about the weather at this time of year always comes up.  Our weekends seem to vary between 90/sunny and 50/rainy.  Further complicating things this year was that Nick's company had scheduled a giant party for the afternoon/evening of Georgia's actual birthday, which fell on a Saturday this year.  So, after some debate (and a few reschedules), we settled on having her party at our local SkyZone on the Sunday of her birthday weekend.

Debate #2... the cake!  Georgia really wanted a Shopkins cake, yet none of our local stores seemed to sell that particular design.  Another issue... none of our local stores could guarantee a nut free cake.  I've ordered her cake from a local baker before, but I wasn't 100% convinced that she was nut-free and I've become more wise over the past few years about cross-contamination risks.  It's just not worth it to me.  I'm a zero risk type of girl, especially on special days like birthdays.  Therefore, I went to work.  Youtube, Google, and Pinterest became my new best friend.  I was determined to make her a Shopkins cake!

Every year, "Georgia's tree" seems to bloom the week of her birthday.  This year, it bloomed about a week early thanks to all the warm weather we've had so far.

Mimi arrived for the birthday weekend on Thursday night and with her came the HOT air for the weekend!  Like, 90+.  I can't ever remember it being 90+ degrees the last week of April!

Note that it's evening (and most likely past bedtime) and we're all outside in short sleeves or nightgowns on the deck!

On Friday, Grant stayed home and chilled with Mimi while the rest of us were at school/work.  Nick's parents arrived in town on Friday afternoon and took Georgia to the bike shop to pick out a new bike for her birthday and out to dinner with Nick.  I played in our weekly school softball game... Go Eagles!  A 20+ run victory is always a nice way to start a weekend.

Just a few of my amazing special ed teammates.  Only two of us actually play on the team this year, but the rest came to cheer us on (and chant things like "Nice legs!").  I recently had a job offer that would have had me moving schools next year, but I couldn't imagine not working with these amazing people day in and day out.  They truly are my work family!

After the game, I headed home and started on my project for that Friday night... cake decorating.  I had baked off the layers the evening before (and had a late night run to Harris Teeter after burning one layer!).  

My inspiration pic:

Now, let's be honest... this was a professional baker.  I knew there was no way I was going to get those types of vibrant colors with store bought frosting, but I had a goal!

To say I was nervous was an understatement!!!! 

Starting to assemble my layers!

The most challenging part was definitely trying to get the frosting smooth.  I never quite got the actual look I was going for, but I did the best I could with the gadgets and gizmos that I had around the house, which includes absolutely ZERO professional cake decorating tools.

The final product:

Wishes from Shopkins

Most importantly, Georgia was so happy with it!  If I had to do it again, I'd try to get brighter colors, but I think I would have needed to mix the colors myself and not use store bought frosting.  Also, making the face was super hard with the gel frosting that I bought.  I think I needed something thinner.  The white line across the top was also ridiculously hard since I didn't own a cake turn stand, so I had to stop and turn the cake every few inches.  I also would have went with a smaller tip.  Oh well... live and learn!

When Georgia went to bed, Nick and I stuck a bunch of Shopkins balloons to her bedroom door and he ran to the store to pick up some balloons for the morning.

Unfortunately, on Saturday morning, we had the be up SUPER early.  In fact, I think it's the earliest that we've all gotten up this year.  Georgia had a 9am tball game, but had tball pictures BEFORE the game, so we had to be dressed and at the field bright and early for pics!

Georgia was super happy to wake up and find the house filled with balloon surprises!

By 7:45am, we were at the field and ready for pics!  I should say, the kids were up and ready for pictures.  All the parents were chugging coffee and rocking bedhead and/or hats.

**These pics may have been our second attempt after I realized that she still had chocolate smeared on her face from her birthday breakfast donuts and I made Nick go ask the photographer if she minded taking a second set of pics after I did the famous mom finger lick and scrubbed the dried chocolate off her face!**

The kids had about 30 minutes to burn before their game started, so off to the playground we went for a short time.  Then I shuttled Nick, Georgia and a neighbor over to the next field while I ran home to pick up Mimi and Grant (and avoided all the closed neighborhood roads thanks to the local 5K, which I skipped this year due to our very busy day!).

By 9am, it was game time!

G and one of her teammates doing... lord knows what... a staring contest?!?!

#6 up to bat on her 6th birthday... She was convinced that her Coach purposefully gave her that number in honor of her birthday (I didn't remind her that MOST of her teammates were also turning 6 this year!)

I'm not sure HOW, WHERE, or WHO gave Georgia the next idea, but it was hysterical.  Check her out on 1st base and her new running pose...

Georgia had a large cheering contingency this morning with grandparents, Mimi, her brother, her parents, etc.  The morning was already muggy and we had a few passing sprinkles in between bursts of sunshine and rumbles of distant thunder.

3 generations of Thoman boys

Georgia went 3 for 3 on the day, which was awesome!  Sometimes she still needs the tee to hit, but not today.  AND she got the end of inning homerun opportunity too!  Big day...

My boys...

At the end of the game, the team sang Happy Bday to Miss G and we brought cupcakes to share with the team since it was also our snack week (might as well hammer out all this stuff in one weekend!).

After tball, it was back home for a few hours for cake, presents, and to prep and get ready to head to the next event on the daily schedule... Nick's company party.

Wednesday, May 3, 2017

Grant - 9 months...

On April 22nd, our little friend turned 9 months old!  At his 9 month well visit appointment, his updated stats were:

Weight - 19.3 pounds (up from 16.11 pounds at his 6 month appt)
Height - 27.25 inches (up from 26 inches at his 6 month appt)

Just for giggles, I went back and checked out Georgia's 9 month stats:
Weight - 18.13 pounds
Height - 27.5 inches

So, Grant weighs about 1/2 pound more than Georgia did at this point, but is about 1/4 of an inch shorter.  Sorry, dude!

In big news this month, Grant finally got his first tooth... and the second... and the third... and the fourth!  It took long enough, but now they're coming in like crazy.

4/12/17 - 1st tooth
4/17/17 - 2nd tooth
4/20/17 - 3rd tooth
5/1/17 - 4th tooth

Grant's favorite thing to do currently is to eat, and eat, and eat some more.  He's no longer happy with puffs and purees.  This guy has moved onto legit table food, including anything and everything we eat.  He also started on our daycare's meal program and has enjoyed such delicacies as teriyaki chicken with oriental vegetables, sliders, ravioli with roasted asparagus, etc.  Little man can eat!

Grant's other hobbies include attending all of Georgia's tball practices and games.  Really, he just loves any time that he can watch other kids.  

Tball + snack = A good time in a 9 month old world

Speaking of tball, Georgia's first game was awesome!  The weather was less than stellar, but she had a great game and had some hits and managed to make some outs.  It's crazy to see how much all the kids have grown in the past few years.  They actually look like they know what's happening... some times!  

Grant loves being in the stroller now and going for walks in the evenings.  We're trying to get back into the habit of taking our nightly walks after dinner.  Our favorite new place to walk is on the trail near our house, which is slowly expanding.  When it's complete, it will lead up to the main road near our house, which is currently under construction (and can't open fast enough!).

Right before we spotted the fox on the trail

When this busy two lane road finally opens, she'll never believe she stood in the middle of it!

Grant's favorite person.... still Georgia!  We're fairly certain that we've all heard him try to say her name over the past few weeks.  Even Mimi thought she heard it when she came last weekend.  I wouldn't be shocked if that was his first official word.  Although "hi" also seems to be coming around.  Now that he can wave, he also seems to be working on "hi" next.

His other new favorite thing to do... clap!

On the flip side, he's also figured out that he is Grant and is recognizing his name now.

The biggest moves of the month are definitely his MOVES.  He's gone from the rolling king to the army crawler to the combination of every possible move that he could ever dream of doing on the floor... usually all at the same time.  It doesn't look pretty, but it's effective.  He can get from one side of the floor to the other in no time flat these days.  It's crazy.  I turn around and he's already across the room.

Pulling himself up

HELP... I'm stuck in here!

His little laugh just cracks me up.  He is so ticklish, especially on his sides.

The best part about this age... he's still a cuddle bug!  I know these days are numbered, so I'm trying to enjoy all those last little hugs and cuddles.

Sunday, April 30, 2017

Easter 2017...

Finishing up on reflecting back on our Spring Break week...

On Sunday, we woke up to find that we had a visitor during the night.  Mr. Easter Bunny must have hopped on by to drop off a few goodies for the kids.

Mommy Bunny and Mimi Bunny both spotted the Shopkins bathing suit at Costco!

The Easter bunny must have heard the rumor that Grant was in search of teeth.  He fulfilled his wish - 3 teeth in the course of 8 days.  #2 tooth popped out a few hours after this picture was taken and #3 arrived a few days later.  The poor kid has had his hand in his mouth since Christmas, so we're just happy to see that he actually has real teeth in there.

I love this next picture.  He just LOVES her...

2017 will forever be known as the Year of the Shopkin in our house.  I'm still not sure I understand what they are or what they do, but I have an entire army of them living in my house.

Grant was more interested in our plastic Easter placemats vs his actual Easter basket...

What do you do when you buy a gigantic spiral ham from Costco for Easter???  Invite over the neighbor friends for dinner, organize an Easter egg hunt and call it a day!  With temps expected to be near 90 for the day, this was an outdoorsy Easter.

Georgia helped with me with the decor...

One of our neighbors "rented" chicks for the week from a neighborhood farm. They were so soft!

Grant checking out the chicks

Between the chicks and our baby bunnies, it was a regular ole petting zoo at our house that day!  Except Georgia was TERRIFIED of holding the chicks because Nick mentioned that they had "sharp claws."

Nothing says Easter like t-shirts and shorts!  Felt more like the 4th of July...

Luckily, the menu for the day did not include rabbit or chicken!

Great spread for pulling it all together in just a few days time!

Georgia had a blast helping me with our desserts.

After dinner, the Dads hid 50 eggs out back in the dry pond.  It took the kids approximately 33 seconds to find them all!

With all the plastic eggs found, Mimi whipped out another fun game... confetti eggs!

Back to work/school and onto wrapping up all the plans for Georgia's big birthday week...