Friday, January 31, 2014

Booster boys

In late fall Jackson and Peyton made the switch to booster seats in the car. They were most excited that there were hideaway cup holders built into the seats. Brett still needs more support than a booster offers so he remains in his car seat. While it holds up to 65 lbs he is getting so tall it's tough to get him into it. Our prayers are to afford a wheelchair accessible van where he can remain in his wheelchair in the van. It's crazy to me that these guys were once too tiny for a traditional baby carrier.


Peyton on left Jackson on the right

Sunday, January 5, 2014

Fabulous Fall

As seems to be my constant trend with blogging these days I am behind. But, regardless, here are some of the highlights from our fabulous fall:

We kicked off fall by signing up for a honey bee program at the local nature preserve. The boys got to  see these live bees, learned about honey bees and helped make a batch of honey. I even tried my hand at sheering the wax off a drawer with a hot knife and I didn't burn anything or anybody!

The boys were a bit disappointed that most of the honey bee program was indoors so we ditched out during the honey tasting (yum) and went on a brief hike. Brett loves the outdoors and was listening to the birds with pure joy.

Auntie Kerry and Auntie Nancy's town has a free fall festival each year. It has become a tradition. Jackson on a pony ride.

Brett at the reins.

Jackson and Sophie on a trackless train ride.

The boys were learning about Johnny Appleseed at school. Jackson said that's what he wanted on his face and the creative teen artist came up with this - he was THRILLED!

Sophie, Peyton, Brett, Caroline and Jackson - cousins hanging out.

Each year we try to go to a pumpkin farm while Grammy and Poppy are visiting. Jackson on the John Deere trikes.

Brett and Auntie Kerry feeding the animals.

The corn kernels are a favorite stop at the farm.

Brett and Peyton in "jail"

Jackson scooping out his pumpkin.

Peyton scooping out his pumpkin. He was so diligent he insisted and did the whole thing himself.
Brett helping scoop out his pumpkin.

Tate and Peyton work on his pumpkin design ideas.

Jackson with his pumpkin.

Peyton and his pumpkin.
Brett and his pumpkin - yep he is sitting on the stair - BY HIMSELF!

I was all ready for the boys to be super heroes or something along those lines, but they insisted they wanted to design their own costumes. They worked with Auntie Kerry and told her what they had in mind and she drew it with their help until it was what they wanted. Auntie Kerry rocks in the Halloween department and helped make their imaginations come to life. The results were spooktacular.

Peyton called his Spooklia part witch, part skeleton, part Frankenstein, part Dracula, part Scream face , a hood like the headless horseman and part pumpkin. Unfortunately I accidentally threw away the head of the picture, but you'll get the idea.
Peyton's costume with all of its parts.
Jackson wanted to be a pumpkin head but scary with a cape and vines on his legs. He called his Jack-O

Jackson as Jack-O. No masks allowed at school so he wore a pumpkin helmet!
Brett insisted on being a zombie. I wasn't so thrilled about the idea at first and worried about it being appropriate for school. I tried to sway his choice several times and he was unwavering. He wanted to be a zombie. I made the mistake of saying how cute he was - which he did not like. He preferred to be scary and he really was. He was a huge hit at school.
This isn't the best picture - he was so excited every picture is a little blurry.
I love this picture. It shows Brett's makeup and costume and I love the look on his face. Auntie Kerry was a zombie as well.
Auntie Kerry and her creations.

Me and Peyton. I was a tribute to Dia de Muerte.
Auntie Nancy was a minion from Despicable Me and Auntie Kerry as a zombie.

Auntie Amy and Uncle Jackie made their giant minion costumes and the girls were Agnes and Edith from Despicable Me. It poured all afternoon. We decided to just go ahead and head into the neighborhood to trick-or-treat and the clouds parted and we only got sprinkled on a bit. The kids covered a good portion of the neighborhood this year and would have gone on, but the adults were getting hungry.

Grandma and Granddad feeding Brett during the Halloween post trick-or-treat party.
Jackson let me use his pumpkin for our "appetizer" guacamole and chips Halloween style.

Auntie Nancy and Auntie Kerry got some "help" with their leaves on a Sunday Family Fun Day.

The cousins in the leaves.

Me and my boys. (Peyton, Brett and Jackson)

We started our thankful tree last year and the boys couldn't wait to do it again this year. Every night we each write what we are thankful for and then share it and put it on the tree. I love hearing what the boys are thankful for and they worked on their cutting and writing skills too.
Peyton really enjoyed painting the tree.

We spent Thanksgiving day at church with the boys singing in the choir and then to Grandma and Granddad's for a feast. I don't know why I don't have any photos from Thanksgiving day, but we had a great time and a delicious meal.
Auntie Kerry turned 40 on Thanksgiving Day. She didn't want a party so Auntie Nancy came up with the idea to have friends and family send bottles of champagne (her favorite) with notes about why people were thankful for her. We staged the party at our house and I think we actually did surprise her!

Auntie Kerry with her nieces, nephews and quite a few bottles of champagne.
We celebrate Thanksgiving with the Campbell side of the family on the Saturday after. Auntie Kerry makes a feast and calls it Gobble 'Til You Wobble. There is food out all day and you just hang out and eat and eat and eat.

Auntie Nancy and Jackson playing a game at Gobble til you Wobble.

Jackson making a turkey hand out of olives - a timeless tradition.

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Kindergarten kids

So once again I'm behind on my blogging. Ugh.

This year the boys started kindergarten. I know, I still can't believe it myself. Our district only offers half day and while I sometimes think about them being at a disadvantage because so many schools offer full day, I'm selfishly glad. Brett is in school all day as he has been since he was 3 to receive the additional services he requires such as therapy. I feel like the half days with Jackson and Peyton are an opportunity to give them a little more time and attention they may not get at other times.

The boys were all excited to go back to school. But the night before the first day Jackson was nervous and said he didn't want to go and wanted to stay home with me. Peyton joined in and they were in tears. I didn't see it coming.
By the next day they were fine and only slightly hesitant. Once they were lined up on the playground they never looked back. It equal parts made me happy and sad.
They recently received their first report cards and were ridiculously excited to share them with me when I got home from work. They are all doing great. Brett is integrating into the same class as Jackson and Peyton part-time and I volunteered at the Halloween party and Brett is like a rock star when he comes in the classroom. All the kids want to come over and push his chair and say hi.
They've all made a lot of friends and it's so fun getting to know the other children and their parents.

Here are some pictures from the first days of school:

Aunt Brenda and Uncle Steve gave the boys a gift card to Target to pick out new backpacks (thank you!). I'm not sure who enjoyed it more the boys or me. I took each of them one on one to shop and they each used the gift card to pay for their backpacks themselves.

Brett narrowed it to two and then did not hesitate to pick this Transformers backpack when he saw that the eyes flashed.

Peyton just could not decide which one he wanted. He narrowed it down to these seven and then raced a car and it stopped in front of the Avengers backpack (the first one farthest from him).

Jackson usually takes a while to make a choice - really contemplating his options. But he saw this Mario Brothers backpack and had his heart set on it. 

We live about a mile from the school. There was an open house to see the classroom and meet the teacher and so we decided to walk and see how long it would take us. I thought we would never get there. They found a baby bird on the sidewalk that couldn't fly and were so concerned. They kept saying go ahead, don't be afraid and flapping their arms to show it how to fly. I kept urging them to move along and, as you can see, Jackson kept giving me the just wait a minute hand. 

Grandma checking out Jackson's cubbie and star with his name on it. Think he was excited?

The boys use the iPad to check the weather in the morning and wanted to see what the weather would be like for the first day of school. Brett gave a thumbs up when I asked if it was shorts weather.

Brett and his backpack.

Peyton, Brett and Jackson

Peyton, Brett and Jackson

I love this picture. Brett kept leaning toward Peyton and was trying to say something and Peyton gave his full attention. Wish I knew what he was saying.

Brett - ready to go.

Peyton - ready to go.

Jackson - ready to go.

Brett excited about taking the bus to school - seriously, it's one of the highlights of his day.

Jackson and Peyton with all of their supplies.

Jackson does not look too happy here, but once the teacher lined them up he was all smiles.