Thursday, January 17, 2008

Happy 2nd Birthday Ashton

Can you believe our "baby" is 2?! I guess I should stop referring to him as "Baby." Sometimes I think he must think it's his name.

Ash's birthday always sneaks up on us and it's hard to get excited about it since Christmas has just past. We had a good time celebrating his birthday -- on his actual birthday -- with Papa and Grandma Tubbs. They came up and had homemade pizza, cake and ice cream with us. It was a fun time.

Ash gives Papa a "thank you" hug for the play dough. He loves Papa so much. He's one of Ashton's favorite people.

Okay, so I wanted to make a special cake for his birthday, but it didn't turn out exactly (or even remotely) like I pictured. I made a sugar cookie train with cookie cutters Rudi found in the after-Christmas bin at Wal-Mart and iced them with royal frosting. I used the "flooding" method and it was a bit tricky, so it didn't quite work out like a train. Oops! I didn't remember to give the cake part of it much thought, so as I decorated it, I just started adding candy. Then it came to me the song that Shirley Temple sings about "Big Rock Candy Mountian," so I told everyone the train was coming 'round Big Rock Candy Mountain, as if I planned it. I think it turned out okay, but now I know more about royal time, royal's a rematch... and you're going down.

The whole gang!

It's not a birthday without horns!

Blowing out the candles.

New Years Eve Day with the Garcias

We spent New Years Eve Day with Rudi's family in Topeka. We opened Christmas gifts (and birthday gifts for Ashton) and had yummy Mexican food. It was a fun day for everyone.

Cousin Amanda and Uncle Mario help Ashton find a birthday present to open.

Brothers - Jeffery, Mario and Rudi at the top. Rudi is the oldest by one year.

Uncle Jeff giving Ashton a hug. Ashton is a world-class hugger.

The boys modeling the restaurant's somberos....pss....don't tell the manager. I don't think we were really supposed to do this....oops! We had a private room, so things happen.

Grandma Juju with her favorite Christmas gift - a picture of her grandchildren that I took at a local park.

Ethan making a Star Wars Lego ship with his favorite cousin Jake. He's very nice to Ethan...and patient :o)

Christmas Cookies with the Staggs

I still have a few Christmas/New Years pictures to post, so bear with me :o)

These are some pictures from when the Staggs came over the weekend after Christmas. We always have so much fun with the Staggs and often say, "Why don't we do this more often!" I know they are bummed about not moving, but we are ESTATIC about them staying in town -- 30 minutes away from us is far enough!

I know Jenny already posted their pictures from that day -- Darn it, you beat me! -- but here are our pictures from the fun day of cookies and cards.


Ashton rolling out flour?

Chris and Jenny :o)

Messy boys making cookies. Ethan isn't really the tallest. He's wearing "lifts." Eli isn't on a stool like everyone else.

Eli showing us his Macadamia nut cookies.

Making gingerbread hearts?!....okay, so it seems like this should be a Valentines' activity, but they are using the cookie cutters that our boys got in their cooking sets from Christmas.

"Christmas P. Stan" is always good for a funny face :o)

Rudi was the brains of the operation, helping the little hands put their oh-so-yummy cookies on the pan to bake.

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

I Almost Forgot Christmas Morning!

I almost forgot to blog Christmas Morning. Here are a couple of shots with the boys playing with their toys from Santa. We were lucky enough this year to find Ethan's Batman stuff on Craig's List and save a ton of money for us, I mean Santa!

Ethan was excited about his Batman house and batmobile. He'll never know I got a huge lot from Craigs List and cleaned them up! I got to take his $50 present back and got this lot of Batman stuff for $15. Little did I know the previous owners had a cat, and when I cleaned up the stuff, I touched my eye and it swelled up for Christmas morning. Fun, fun! He also got a few more Star Wars guys and I finally framed some artwork we found for his room.

Ashton's favorite Christmas gift was the Mickey Mouse Clubhouse. He loves Mickey Mouse, so he was in heaven. This thing was deceptively hard to put together. The stickers were kind of a guess. We went over to our friends the Flodens the other day and they too got their little girl this toy for Christmas. I noticed my stickers were in a different place than Stacy's....oops!

Ethan gives Ashton a hug after he unwrapped the gift Ashton picked out for him -- A Memory Game with Superheros.

Monday, January 14, 2008

Christmas Day with the Schoavers

We spent Christmas Day with our Best Good Friends the Schoavers. It was so fun to catch up with them and their adorable little boy. We had so much fun playing the Wii, eating Christmas dinner, watching the kids jump in the ball pit and playing the Guillotine game. If you're not familiar, you'd love it.

Ethan shows off his jumping skills into the ball pitt.

Ashton can't let Ethan have all the fun.

Another reason to not take your eye off of the 5-year-old and the crystal.

This is Dan the Dog. I've been wanting to make a sock dog ever since I read the article in Martha Stewart Living five or six years ago. I was happy to finally complete this craft project for this Christmas. Dan the Dog has a brother Pepe the Puppy, but he has mysteriously disappeared after our firends the Schoavers left...... hmmm.... I wonder?! Pepe, if you're reading, Come home. We miss you! Bark twice if Jenn stole you!

Ashton and T play with his new Mickey Mouse Club House that Santa (thanks Mom & Dad) gave to him. He LOVES it.... and so does T.

T looking cute in the ball pitt. Hey, did T sneak Woody into the ball pitt?

T finally decides he's going to throw the balls.

How cute is T ?!

J is testing the crystal! Yes, it's real....

Who doesn't love Uncle S? We do, we do! In fact, we were watching a Disney Movie (Cadet Kelly) last night and Ethan said one of the Army men looked like Uncle S. I think he thinks Uncle S is a super hero!

Feeding time!

Rudi is our resident turkey carver. I don't think I'd know what to do if I got this job?

Christmas Eve - Fondue Party

We spent Christmas Eve home alone. It was actually nice to just be our little family. This was our first time. We had a fondue dinner and then read the Christmas story and acted it out with our Little People Nativity.

The boys enjoying acting out the Nativity.

An embarrising picture of me eating fondue.

Ethan's Preschool Christmas Party

Ethan's preschool has a Christmas party every year. This year, Mom and Ashton attended and helped out.

Ethan's class with his teacher.

Ethan coloring his reindeer food bag. They then put birdseed and red and green sparkles in the food bag and sprinkled over the lawn on Christmas Eve. Ethan asked me why we added the sprinkles and one of the moms replied that it was because it helped the reindeer find the food.

Ashton was a good assistant and helped by handing Ethan markers (and testing them as well of course.)

All the kids brought a five-dollar-gift and drew numbers to see who got which. Ethan got some cool block-like toy. He's a builder, so it was a perfect gift.

Ethan and Ashton hug during the snack portion of the party. Ethan always shares with his little brother.

Christmas at the Tubbs

We had a Christmas party at the Tubbs' since they were going to my brother's for Christmas. We had a good time eating and exchanging presents and hugs.

Papa Tubbs playing his "flute" we got him for Christmas. It was one of his presents from China.

Ethan and Ashton pose for a picture right after dinner. You can see the remains of dinner on their faces. I think Ashton's beard is made from Oreos.

Unwrapping our presents. Grandma and Papa gave us Disney figures. Ashton got Mickey Mouse and the gang (his favorites) and Ethan got the figures from Meet the Robinsons.

Ashton gives Papa a "thank you" hug after opening his gifts. Papa is one, if not the one, of his favorite people. When he pooped in the potty for the first time, his reward was to go to Cici's Pizza with Papa. Now he constantly talks about eatting pizza with Papa.

Grandma gives Ethan a hug after opening a photo book of the children and grandchildren that we made for her at

Grandma smiles at Ashton as they share their Christmas gifts.