Tuesday, November 29, 2011

The Lodge

Just like last year, we headed to Great Wolf Lodge the Sunday following Thanksgiving. This year, we had some added company, as Kristin and her brood decided to come along. We were pleased to get some free upgraded rooms and our had a fireplace and loft and two bathrooms! Plenty of room to spread out. We come to GWL for the waterpark and that's pretty much all we did for two days straight. We gave Cameron some freedom this year and let him wander the park with a cousin-buddy and Gavin tried the BIG slide- the tornado! Even though he was a bit short, they still let him ride and he loved it! Mason was a little daredevil and went with one of us on the big slides and went by himself down some of the bigger kid ones. He really enjoyed the wave pool too. We went to story time Sunday night in our jammies and ate at Sonic for dinner. After a full night's sleep we woke up ready to do it all over again and we stayed at the park until 6:30! The kids were asleep in the car in no time and it was a quiet ride home. I think we have started a new tradition and it is one that the whole family can enjoy. What a great place and what luck that the cousins could come and play with us. We are already looking forward to next year.

Saturday, November 26, 2011

Cousin-palooza 2011

Thanksgiving last year was such a blast that we decided to have a do-over this year. Lisa and her family came up from Tennessee, Kristin and her family came from Richmond, Pop Pop, Mom, Jeff, Jim and Judy all came for round two. Last year we had learned a few things and so this year was even more seamless and relaxed. After our turkey feast we played a rousing game of basketball, or watched a movie and then at 4:30 we skyped with Becky in Australia and filed through wishing them a belated happy Thanksgiving (it was already Friday morning there). The kids probably had the most fun of all hanging out with cousins they haven't seen since last year.

Lisa's family stayed with us again this year (lucky us!) We went into DC and toured the White House and saw the National Archives and then on Friday, Kristin's family joined us and the girls headed to Old Town Alexandria and Georgetown while the boys went back to DC to catch a few museums. We gathered that evening for dinner and games that we've played since we were kids like Pit and Characters and we all laughed so hard we cried. I am convinced that our family may be funnier than any other. Kristin especially had us rolling the most. I don't think anyone wanted to leave or go to sleep that night. It really was so much fun and I am so thankful for sisters with children who love and play with mine. Family is the best!

Kendall and Brooke- beautiful nieces!
Brandon and Gavin- inseparable
Mason and Emory- his favorite cousin!

Skyping with Becky and fam
Four sisters

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Gavin's Birthday

Gavin was so excited for his birthday to come this year. He's been talking about all of the little details of the day, including when he opened his presents, what he wanted for breakfast, and what he wanted me to bring in for his school treat for weeks. He woke up super early (the time change didn't help either) and was ready to celebrate. He had pancakes with Reese's Pieces smiley faces, complete with the green crown he requested. He got to buy school lunch (which is a bit of a treat at our house) and I brought in cake pops during snack time. After school he didn't want to do any homework, but we did get some reading in and then when daddy got home we went to dinner at Red Robin and then came home for his "colorful cake." Gavin loves to color and at first he wanted a crayon cake, but luckily I was able to persuade him to let me do something a bit easier! He opened his gifts which included a Green Lantern playset and costume. He loves Green Lantern even though he hasn't even seen the movie, so we thought it appropriate to rent the movie and watch it (on our clearplay) on his birthday. The early morning caught up with our little green hero and we had to save the rest of the movie for later, he was pooped. I think he would agree that it was a super fun day and he is so happy to be 6!

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

The Date

A few weeks ago I asked Gavin what he would like to do for his birthday. Did he want to invite some friends over and have a little party? He told me that he wanted to go to the movies and see Puss N Boots. Fine. Who would you like to invite? Ashley. Just Ashley. Nobody from school or church? Nope. Just Ashley. In fact, he didn't even want his brothers to come and asked if I could just drop them off! When I told him that wasn't an option, he asked if I could maybe sit somewhere else in the theatre. Where does he get this stuff?

Gavin and Ashley have been best friends since they were born. Our families are practically joined at the hip and these two have forged a bond that can't be broken. Even though they are in different classes at school. They sit back to back at lunch every day and play together at recess. Ashley rides home on the bus with Gavs every Thursday and they spend their time coloring and playing dress up and reading to each other. It simply is adorable. They talk about getting married some day and I hold my breath at the thought. It would be all too perfect. I love the innocence of it all.

Well, last night was the much anticipated date, Gavin had prepared by dressing especially dashing and putting on some of dad's cologne, Ashley had set out her outfit days ago planning just what she would wear and how she would do her hair. He went to get her all by himself, and helped her into the car. We went to get some frozen yogurt at Zinga and opened the gift Ashley had gotten him. Gavin asked if there was a heart on the card or even lips! They held hands the whole night and despite his request, I sat next to them during the movie so I could keep a close eye on Prince Charming. There was a perfectly acceptable hug at the end of the evening and I think both of them were tickled to be able to go on their first date. I hope the memories last since the next one won't be until they're both 16. These sweet little friends really have something special and I'm so glad I get to witness it. I hope it lasts forever.

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

The Spoils