Monday, December 31, 2012

Extended Christmas


We spent the weekend with both extended families. Nate always enjoys Honey and PopPop's house and cousin Wesley. A few inches of snow was a bonus. Nate enjoyed sledding and building a snowman, in addition to giving and receiving gifts, lots of great eats, and the washing machine.




The boys also schooled the grandparents in Gangnam Style:


Then we went to Grandma Happy's, where Nate enjoyed the Christmas train, more gifts, and cousin Sara:

We certainly missed Papaw, but did have ourselves a merry little Christmas.

Thursday, December 27, 2012

{this moment}

Making motorcycle noises, Christmas Eve 2012
















My dear paternal grandfather, Ben ("Papaw,") passed away peacefully this morning. He was dear to so very many, and led a long and exemplary life. We are so grateful for that life, for the time we had with him in our home, and for the very special bond he shared with our sweet boy. He often expressed the hope that he would live long enough for Nate to remember him. I don't have a single doubt.

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Christmas 2012

Mama and Daddy were pretty excited for Christmas this year, probably even more so than Nate. We got our tree early from the local farm stand, where Nate was happy to see the big Santa but disappointed that the dancing Santa from last year was absent. We strung some lights on a few trees outdoors, and hung curtains of star lights in Nate's bedroom.

We again took toy donations to the VFD collection, and saw Santa on a firetruck. Invited to ring the bell, Nate got to go in the cab of the firetruck. He managed to find the button for the siren, as well! 

Nate's interest in baking cookies: minimal. Interest in decorating cookies: moderate. Interest in eating cookies: extreme.

The preschool had a number of fun activities, including decorating the tree, books from Santa at the Christmas party, and Wear-Your-Pajamas Day.

We had daily requests for the Charlie Brown Christmas special, and Nate spied Peanuts characters EVERYWHERE. Mama was thrilled to find the Snoopy Christmas shirt in some hand-me-downs.

On Christmas Eve, we dressed in holiday finery (Nate's coat was a Goodwill find) and enjoyed the evening service at St. Luke's. Nate had no chance to help scatter the reindeer food or leave cookies for Santa, as he fell asleep in the car on the way home. He slept until 8:30 Christmas morning (truly a miracle!) and came downstairs to see what Santa had brought.
Left: What we saw. Right: What Nate saw.







Nate had asked for only one thing, a toy garage door. Thank goodness Santa came through, because no toy store carries such a thing. Nate seemed very pleased with the garage, especially once he removed all the landscaping and moved the house next to the dollhouse. ("Garage doors live next to houses.") He literally played with it for hours. We had to twist his arm encourage him to move on to other gifts and breakfast.




The matching umbrella and boots (with dogs in sailboats!) were a hit, as was the sock monkey hat from Aunt Bert. Playmobil camper van, horse and stall, powerboat and sailboat were also popular. He also enjoyed a great rumbling tractor from Stephanie, some PlayDoh tools, and a sleeping bag and folding chair.

Sunday, December 16, 2012

Richmond Cousins


We spent the weekend with mama's cousins in Richmond. Their house is always warm, inviting, and fun, and never more so than at Christmas. This was the only time all three boys were still; that's how much fun they had.



Kinsey made a wonderful meal, David mixed festive cocktails, and Kinsey even let Nate help bake a birthday cake to celebrate his and Mama's birthdays. Great-Aunt Beth, Great-Uncle Walter and the cousins gave Nate a gorgeous ukelele, and Cooper and Luke were very generous sharing their toys with Nate. Time with the Thomases is always too short, but we treasure it so.




Friday, December 14, 2012

{this moment}







































{this moment} - A Friday ritual. A single photo capturing a moment from the week. A simple, special, extraordinary moment. A moment I want to pause, savor and remember.  Idea courtesy of SouleMama

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

B&O Railroad Museum

On Mama's birthday, we headed to the B&O Railroad Museum in Baltimore. Joined by friends Emily and Luke, we enjoyed the regular exhibits, the holiday model train displays, and the carousel.


Thursday, December 06, 2012

Sunday, December 02, 2012

Sara's Tenth Birthday







































Our niece Sara turned ten in November, and Grandma Happy threw her a bouncing birthday bash this weekend at Bounce U. Much fun was had by all.


Friday, November 30, 2012

{this moment}


{this moment} - A Friday ritual. A single photo capturing a moment from the week. A simple, special, extraordinary moment. A moment I want to pause, savor and remember.  Idea courtesy of SouleMama

Playground

Monday, November 26, 2012

Thanksgiving


Grandmas, toys, food, and washing machines. 'Nuff said.

We wrestled Nate into this 1970s sweater. He seemed mortified by our attempt to recreate the photo of Mark at the same age. I am sure it will come up in therapy in a decade or so.


We are so very grateful for all the blessings in our lives.

Friday, November 16, 2012

{this moment} Yard Work







{this moment} - A Friday ritual. A single photo capturing a moment from the week. A simple, special, extraordinary moment. A moment I want to pause, savor and remember.  Idea courtesy of SouleMama

Friday, November 09, 2012

{this moment} guest bed



{this moment} - A Friday ritual. A single photo capturing a moment from the week. A simple, special, extraordinary moment. A moment I want to pause, savor and remember. Idea courtesy of SouleMama

Wednesday, November 07, 2012

Weekend in Pennsylvania


This weekend, we drove to Pennsylvania to see Ally, Mike, and "Baby George," who is not a baby any more. Nate and George were very busy, and their parents were as lazy as we could get away with. Nate loved seeing and feeding the critters,


hiking to, over, and under the covered bridge,


and visiting the dairy farm of one of Ally's veterinary clients and neighbors:


where he got to see cows being milked and taste extremely fresh milk.

We also enjoyed fossil hunting, lots of yummy comfort food, and all of George's toys. What a fun weekend!

Saturday, November 03, 2012

Halloween





I offered Nate any costume choice, but he wanted to wear the knight costume he had worn to Alex's birthday party. Since he now likes the helmet and fits the boots, why not? He became a pro at trick-or-treating this year, although he couldn't understand why we didn't go inside to see our neighbors (and their dogs.) When we returned, he showed his candy haul to Goodman and went right for the lollipop.


My, how those bones have grown!

Friday, November 02, 2012

{this moment}


































{this moment} - A Friday ritual. A single photo capturing a moment from the week. A simple, special, extraordinary moment. A moment I want to pause, savor and remember. Idea courtesy of SouleMama

Saturday, October 27, 2012

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Zoo



We joined Jenny-Jen and Alex again this fall for a trip to the Maryland Zoo in Baltimore. Nate enjoyed the walking, running, and climbing more than the animals themselves this year, I think.

He has grown a lot since last year:

The stroller was used primarily for carrying things:

But he really enjoyed petting and brushing the goats:

and the train ride:

We think fall is the perfect time to visit the zoo. We had the train ride to ourselves, and the conductor let Nate sit on the locomotive and ring the bell and toot the whistle. And the long walk in and out looks like this:


Many thanks to Jenny-Jen and Alex for such a fun adventure!