Monday, July 27, 2009

Fun Pictures

Here are a few more picture from our Indiana Trip. Sorry I'm being so slow in getting these posted. We have been crazy with adoption paperwork and It's taking me a while to get other stuff organized.

Family Photo in front of Science Central
Who says adults can't climb up for a picture too? :)

Precious little Stephen!

Friday, July 24, 2009

Fort Wayne Zoo

Sometimes there are just those places that take you back in time to your childhood and make life feel simple and care free. The Fort Wayne Zoo is one of those places for me. When I was in junior high, my dad (a college professor) got a summer job in Fort Wayne, so we all moved up for the summer. We got a smallish apartment for our family of eight and spent the summer reading tons of books for the fabulous Fort Wayne library summer reading program, running around outside in the big grassy area that just happened to be right outside our apartment door, and making frequent visits to the Fort Wayne Zoo. It was a fairly simple summer (at least from my childhood memory's perspective) as the major busyness of life had been left back home. I have a lot of fond memories of really good family time.

And so, when we visited my sister and her husband, we decided it was time to take Benjamin there to enjoy it as well. It's rated one of the top zoos in the country and with good reason. The landscapes are beautiful, the animals easy to see and for the most part, not just in cement cages, and of course, they have a water fountain shaped like a lion. (see the picture below to find out why we think that fountain is so great.) It didn't hurt that the weather was absolutely perfect the day we went either. Now that we are back in the heat of south Texas, I'm really missing summer weather than you can enjoy being outside in.

Benjamin absolutely loves trains, so he enjoyed climbing around inside this one
Admiring the Jelly Fish

This is a classic picture for us. Matt had a picture of himself drinking from this fountain when he was little, and then we have another one that I took shortly before we were engaged of him drinking out of it, and now it's Benjamin's turn.

Benjamin loves hats!
Getting silly with the hats
In the rain forest

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Benjamin and His new Cousin Stephen

Benjamin was pretty happy about his new cousin Stephen. He walked around constantly saying "Tephen" and "cousin." I certainly enjoyed getting to see him too and miss him like crazy now! I can't wait to see Benjamin and Stephen running around together.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Birthday Party Number Two for the Two Year Old

While we were in Indiana this past week, we had a second birthday celebration for Benjamin with our families. My whole family was there, as well as Matt's parents and his Aunt Connie. We are so blessed to have such wonderful family! Benjamin loves his grandparents and aunts and uncles and routinely names them all off. I know he's talking about grandpa and grandma Davis when he mentions water towers (a word they taught him when we were there in May) and I know he's talking about my parents when he also lists off all my brothers and sisters. It's so fun to watch him learning!

Party Time!
This was the sweet face he made before breaking into tears as 15 people sang to him. Guess it was a little overwhelming.
Blow hard!
Beka helping Benjamin look like a birthday boy before he opened his gifts
Opening his favorite toy of the moment. Cars!!!
John and Benjamin loved playing cars together
My mom enjoying holding sweet Stephen

Yet Another Trip Away

I feel like every time I blog, we have just returned from a trip somewhere. It's been a very busy summer! But here we are again, having just gotten back from Indiana again and attempting to get back to normal routine. Ahh yes, but what is normal anyway? I'm realizing once again that I can so easily fill my schedule up with house cleaning, cooking, decluttering, errands, and gym time that I leave myself no room for playtime with Benjamin. So my new "normal" is me trying to get my priorities back in line. I even finally tried my hand at making gluten free play dough, which was immediately turned into cement mixers, buses, cars, and caves. Very fun. Benjamin is finally beginning to grasp the concept of colors, so I think we will be doing a new color of play dough at least once a month.

My plan for next week was to begin potty training, but my once eager toddler has now decided that sitting on the potty is scary. I'm not sure why, but the one time he went #2 scared him and now, even though he still tells me when he has to go, he throws an all out fit when I ask him it he wants to sit on the potty. So, maybe we'll wait a little longer.

I've been getting tickled all this week by Benjamin's attempt at manners. He is getting to be quite the well mannered child. :) I give him something he's asked for and he says "welcome." He gives me something I've asked for and says "Thank You." So, we have it a little backwards, but we're working on it. Today he burped and said excuse me and I almost laughed out loud. It's just too cute to hear his little voice saying "scuse me."

And our last bit of news is that we are officially in the middle of paperwork for our second adoption. We started it at the beginning of July, but each of us has to have a physical and my regular doctor doesn't do all the lab work needed, so I had to find a new one. Because of that, I wasn't able to schedule mine until mid August. But, yesterday they called me to tell me that my appointment had been canceled. I was pretty upset at first as the appointment had been made over two weeks before and I figured they wouldn't be able to get me in until probably September. But, they had an opening with a different doctor in the practice for this next Tuesday, so woohoo! We should have all of our paperwork ready to send in by the end of next week. I'm SO excited! Now to be patient in the waiting for Benjamin's little brother or sister.

Well, I have a LOT of pictures to post from our trip to IN, so I think I'm going to put them in a separate post.


Thursday, July 9, 2009

What to do on a Hot Summer Day.

We have had an incredibly hot summer so far. Yesterday's high was 104, but the heat index was 108. That's a bit too hot for my liking. So needless to say, we keep most of our outdoor activities to mornings or late evenings. But we have managed to enjoy a little water time and get cooled off a few times.
Benjamin and his friend "cisty" (Christy)
We got Benjamin a slip 'n slide for his birthday this year. He hasn't totally figured it out yet, but it's a nice way to cool off a bit.

We had a 4th of July party with our Sunday School class and Benjamin enjoyed the kiddie pool

Party Time!!!

Well, I have certainly been a slacker in the blogging department lately. I can't believe I've waited more than a week to blog about Benjamin's birthday.

This year was such a fun year because Benjamin began to really understand that we were celebrating him. We talked about his birthday for several days beforehand and he woke up in the mornings saying "birtday?" I am loving this stage of him just beginning to put things together. He no longer says words just to copy us, but is really starting to understand what they mean. We celebrated Benjamin's birthday with our friends Brian and Katie and their son Cale. Benjamin was SO excited about having Cale come over and talked about it all day long. When Matt got home from work that night before Cale got to our house, Benjamin was pretty disappointed that it was not Cale walking in the door.

I think one of Benjamin's favorite parts of the day was when he finally got to get his hands on his cake. I found a delicious gluten free cake recipe that uses "Pamela's Gluten Free Baking and Pancake Mix" as well as a few other ingredients and it was very tasty. But more important to Benjamin than the taste was the fact that it had rescue vehicles on it. He is totally in love with all types of vehicles and was pretty upset when I was making the cake and he couldn't have the trucks right then. So as soon as he blew out his candles (video coming at some point) he was quick to pull off the trucks!

During the day for Benjamin's birthday, I wanted it to be a special time too, so Benjamin and I went to Toys R Us where he is signed up for the birthday club and got to pick out a free toy. He of course picked matchbox cars. Then we went out to lunch before heading to Barnes and Noble to play with their awesome train set in the kids area. And then, because he is only two, we headed home for a much needed nap. :)

Stay tuned for Birthday celebration number 2 after our upcoming trip to Indiana.
The Fire Truck Cake!

Birthday Decor
This was so cute. Right before we were getting ready to pray, we told Benjamin and Cale to hold hands and they did.
Hat is on, he's ready to party!
Showing off his favorite part of the cake - the firetrucks!
Little Cutie!

Wednesday, July 1, 2009