Thursday, January 22, 2015

Graham is FIVE!

Today my sweet middle boy is having a birthday and just as is his nature, he woke up giddy with excitement! He was beyond thrilled to find a simple Happy Birthday banner hanging in the living room and donuts for breakfast with a candle to blow out. He says he feels taller and that he loves how being five feels. I love seeing life through the eyes of Graham. Little did I know on this day in 2010 what we were getting into! He is the kind of kid that finds joy in everything and brings joy to everyone. 

Since Graham's party isn't for a couple of days and we have small group this evening, we decided to treat him to lunch at the place of his choice. And just like every five year old, he responded with and excited, "UPTOWN GROCERY CO!!!" Yes, that is right. We went to a grocery store for lunch because he loves their chicken fingers, mashed potatoes, and rolls. What a silly kid!

Some fun things about Graham at this age:
- He is a genius. No, really. He comes off as flighty and can't get his shoes on the right feet or remember where his water bottle is but the kid was reading fluently several months ago and is breezing through second semester 1st grade math like it's nothing. I see him being sort of an absent minded professor in the future. If he's not a snow boarder or something, that is. :)
- Graham loves soccer. Going to his class at Soccer City each week is so much fun for him! He counts down the days. This kid wears his emotions on his sleeve and every time he scores, you would think he had just scored the winning goal in the World Cup. He's actually pretty talented and I think this may be his sport.
- He loves games. Right now his favorite is Clue Jr. but he's also spent lots of time playing Go Fish, Uno, Candy Land, Sorry, and Chutes and Ladders. He enjoys playing over and over and over again. And if no one wants to play? No problem. He just plays with "Mr. Nobody." Funny how he seems to always beat that guy.
- Graham has a great imagination. He and Jack play for hours and hours fighting Vikings, flying through outer space, dominating football games, and catching bad guys. It is so cool to hear how their minds work and I just love that they have each other.
- He has a talent for acting and comedy. He loves to recite lines from movies and has a great ability to make the exact right facial expressions and voices. He entertains us and makes us laugh like crazy!
- Graham loves books. He could read all day long. He also really enjoys listening to books on CD while he follows along. We check out about 5 from the library every week and he always hates to return them. He enjoys hearing the same stories over and over again and is finally developing an attention span long enough to listen to chapter books read by me. I love snuggling up with my boys and a good book.
- He enjoys being outside and likes walks but hates riding a bike. I don't know why but he has never been too steady on a bike and it makes him very nervous. This Christmas he got a balance bike and he is more willing to use it but still a little unsettled. I'm hoping he will be racing down the street with Jack this spring!
- Graham loves to play games on the Nook. He plays a math game and a states game and I can see that if his time weren't limited to 30 minutes per day, he would easily become an addict. He has a thing for screens.
- He loves his baby brother and is adored by Reid. Even though Reid is starting to annoy him at times, getting into his things, etc. they share a very sweet bond. Graham never wants me to go get Reid in the morning or after a nap without him coming along to help. And they always kiss each other good night. 
- Graham loves sports but what he loves even more is keeping track of the score. He is fascinated with the numbers and seems to watch the scoreboard more than the game sometimes! Having said that, he is such a support for Jack and cheers his little heart out when Jack plays basketball.

Graham is truly a one of a kind kid. He talks a mile a minute ALL. DAY. LONG. I have a hard time keeping up with all the questions: Mommy, who do you want to win, blue or red? Mommy, who is stronger, Yoda or Darth Vader? Mommy, what is a million minus 3? Mommy, (insert fake team here) just got an interception! Wanna see the replay?!

He is so loving and very quick to forgive. He can be emotional but bounces back so quickly from sad to happy- I've never seen anything like it. He has the gift of encouragement and uses that gift to bless others every day. If I could be Graham for a day, I would, because Graham world is a very happy and fun place. But I will settle for being his mommy. What a gift it is!

Friday, January 2, 2015

Christmas 2014

It's hard to believe another Christmas has come and gone. This year was really nice. Randy was able to take off the entire week so we spend some really great family time with the boys in the days leading up to Christmas. We went snow sledding at the Bricktown ballpark, Christmas light seeing in Edmond, went to Devon's Saturdays with Santa, rode the carousel downtown, went on walks to the skate park by our house, etc. It was a great week!

We had several Christmas celebrations. We started off with Randy's family in Tulsa the Saturday before Christmas. It was great to see everyone, although we were missing my niece, Hailey, who was out of town with her dad. The boys received some wonderful gifts, ate Christmas cookies, and of course, played with their new rocket shooter outside.

On Christmas Eve Eve, Daniel's family came into town and we went with them along with my parents and Papo to the church service at Crossings. It was sweet seeing all the kids together and Brooklyn rode with us in our car so the boys loved that! The service was good and none of the kids caused too much of a ruckus so that's always helpful.

On Christmas Eve, we enjoyed making cookies with the kids and playing on the new zipline. What a fun gift from BB and Grandad! B was a little too scared this time around but the boys all loved it and I know she will too next time. There was a bit of chaos this day as half of the electricity in my parents house went out but really, isn't there always some chaos? It was resolved in time and we had a nice dinner once Hayley's family arrived.

On Christmas morning the boys woke to find some gifts by the tree! Reid loved his new bike and Olaf! Jack was most thrilled by his Thunder basketball and scooter, and Graham seemed most excited about the new scoreboard.

We spend the afternoon with the rest of my side of the family and had a nice, peaceful day. I enjoyed seeing Griffin and Leah have their first Christmas and felt really blessed to have both of my siblings' families with us this year.

I miss having babies but at the same time, I am loving this stage- they are old enough to really enjoy all of the festivities and we are making some wonderful memories!