Monday, April 30, 2018

Brody is 7!

Our sweet little baby has really grown into a little man in 7 years. 
Brody's 7th Birthday Interview:

1.  Who is your favorite person in the whole world?

my brother Evan

2.  What is your favorite color?


3.  What's your favorite television show?

Dragon's Edge - a continuation of the "How to Train Your Dragon" movies

4.  What's your favorite outfit?

blue soccer ball shirt and shorts

5.  What sport do you like best? 

football (probably none but he is going to try playing football this year)

6.  What song do you love?

 4 Him - The Nature of Love (an old Christian song I put on his Kindle, but it is a good one)

7.  What's your favorite cereal?


8.  Who is your best friend?


9.  What do you want to be when you grow up?

a chef

10.  What is your favorite book?

Magic Treehouse - He has read the first four and is working on the fifth one and says he likes them all.

11.  What are you really good at?


12.  Where do you wish you could go on vacation?

the beach

13.  What is your best memory?

riding roller coasters at Wild Adventures

14.  What would you buy if you had $1000? 

a dump truck ~ these are Brody's typical silly answers

15.  What vegetable do you hate the most?

chard ~ I'm not sure he has tried it.  They planted some different lettuces at school, and he just remembers this one and likes to say it.

16.  What food do you like best?

Mellow Mushroom pizza

17.  What is your favorite flavor of ice cream?

cookies and cream

18.  What do you love most about yourself?

I am funny, silly, and crazy.  Mommy will add that she thinks I am a very sweet, loving, and cuddly little man.

19.  What do you like to do with your best friends?

play lava tag and crystal tag (just new names for the old game of freeze tag)

20.  What do you hope you'll get to do before your next birthday?

I want to see dinosaurs. 

We were heading off on a special trip for Brody's birthday weekend, but I knew we had to have a little birthday celebration for him at home.  Birthdays are always such a big deal to this kid.  He just loves the cake, decorations, and pretty wrapped presents.  It doesn't take much to make this boy happy, and I love being able to do the little things that he truly appreciates.  This year, I tried to come up with a cake that I knew he would love.  One of his favorite pasttimes at the moment is playing his Skylanders game on the WiiU.  He and Evan have been playing Skylanders for several years and have amassed quite a collection of the Skylanders figurines that you use to play the game.  They have three or four of the different games so the characters coincide with the different games.     

I found some Skylanders cakes on Pinterest and thought I could tackle a simple one using some of his figurines.

The figures sit on a portal that lights up and allows them to interact with the game so I thought the cake needed a portal of power too.   Brody thought the cake was too cool to eat.  The portal of power was made with kitkats around the edge.  

Make a wish, birthday boy. 

He finally got a little present to open.  I wanted to get him more, but he really didn't ask for anything and loved his special trip so much.  He got a new Skylanders crystal for his newest game that allows you to create your own characters on the game. 

He just loves unwrapping a present. 

He was very happy to get a new Skylander, and he and Evan couldn't wait to create the character.  

On his actual birthday on our way home from our trip, we ate at a different Mellow Mushroom.  Like our usual one, this one had some cool recycled metal sculptures, and this one had a really cool Incredible Hulk and superhero theme.  I loved Hulk's fist coming through the wall of the restaurant. 

Friday, April 20, 2018

Evan's Last Days of Cub Scouts

This year has truly felt like the ending of an era in the life of our firstborn son.  He completed his elementary school years and his Cub Scout experience.  I feel like we still have many more years of these adventures ahead of us with three more boys following in his footsteps though.  It is just starting to get real that we only have a few more years left before he leaves home to go out into the world.  Evan has really been an incredible first child.  With the exception of a few rough months his first year getting him to gain enough weight, he has surpassed all of our dreams and expectations of parenting.  He is the best big brother, a kind and compassionate young man, an awesome student and intellectual, and a dedicated athlete and lover of all sports known to man. He pretty much rocks our world around here.  Evan's troop really made his last days as a Cub Scout some of the most memorable of his entire four years with some special ceremonies and celebrations honoring their accomplishments.

In February, Evan and Brody wore their uniforms to church because they were supposed to attend a religious service for part of a badge requirement.  Cub Scouts are taught to be reverent.  

Later that day, Evan and his den visited City Hall to learn about being good citizens and participating in local government.  They met the mayor and a special police dog. Our little town has a little history involving Henry Ford and his investment in agriculture and forestry operations. He even built a winter home here for his family. 

The boys learned a lot that day.  His parents did not attend so I was thankful someone took these pictures. 

The annual Pinewood Derby is a huge Cub Scout event.  The boys design and build their cars which must pass specifications for weight and size.  They are encouraged to get creative with their designs so there are always some impressive cars. Evan wanted a fire breathing dragon car this year.  We should have put his eyes on top, but I thought they looked better on the sides.  I just forgot that the car wheels would hide them.  Haha!  

He did get a special award for his unique design. 

He didn't win his den race, but he did come in 5th out of 12 so not too bad. 

He earned his last badges and awards at this meeting. 

A picture of his whole den after the awards were presented. 

This troop really makes the annual Blue and Gold Banquet a special occasion for the oldest Cub Scouts who are earning their Arrow of Light as the final stage of Cub Scouts.  The cake had all of Evan's den's names on it. 

A picture of the whole troop.  It is a pretty big troop. 

The table centerpieces were too cute, and the boys loved the peg games and smores kits. 

There was a fun photo backdrop with props.  Evan and Brody were going camping together, and Grayson was my little lumberjack with his ax. I love my lumberjack so much I wore lumberjack plaid lipstick.  Haha! 

Mattox played us some tunes by the campfire. We were very proud parents of our Cub Scout. 

I received a special mother's sash so that if Evan chooses to continue in Boy Scouts, he will pin me whenever he advances in rank. It is very sweet.  He received his Arrow of Light plaque and his Boy Scout book. 

These gorgeous wood carved plaques with their names on them display their arrows and will be treasures for years. Evan enjoyed eating his name on the cake. 

Standing up with Evan during the awards presentation.  The 7 Arrow of Light candles represent the 7 virtues of life that all scouts should strive to live by which are wisdom, courage, self-control, justice, faith, hope, and love. 

I do not recall either of our previous troops doing this special ceremony for their last Cub Scout adventure.  The crossing over represents the boys transition from Cub Scouts to Boy Scouts. It felt pretty ritualistic with a ceremonial bonfire and a high rope bridge.  Boy Scouts attended to provide support to the new scouts and welcome them. 

I thought the picture of the flag with the Scouts behind it was cool.  Evan got to be the first to cross the bridge.  I told him he was the guinea pig.  All of the Boy Scouts lined up below the ropes to support any scout who faltered. 

Evan crossed like a champ.  He has historically been a little afraid of heights. 

After he crossed over and received his new neckerchief, he stood with the other Boy Scouts to offer support. 

Tuesday, April 10, 2018

Our Easter 2018

Easter was a fairly simple affair this year.  We took our annual family pictures in beautiful downtown Savannah's Forsyth Park and spent a traditional Easter Sunday going to church together and having an Easter egg hunt afterwards.  I love Easter, and this one was a good one.

We started Easter off by attempting to get our picture made with the Easter bunny.  I have actually never even attempted to get my kids' picture made with him before.  Now, if it was a real bunny, I would be all over it.  I just don't really care much for someone dressed in a bunny costume.  That just doesn't spell E.A.S.T.E.R. to me, and I love all things Easter.  I love the real meaning of the season as a Christian, but I also love the beautiful traditions of brightly colored eggs, beautiful Spring flowers and colors, and pretty Easter clothes.  And I love REAL bunnies.  Maybe that is my hang up.  I just don't want fake bunnies.  Anyway, my kids must agree because this is what we got.  Mattox and Grayson totally flipped out, and Evan and Brody just tried their best to keep them in the picture.  Ha!  We really just went because it was free, and we were meeting Eddie's sister's family there to celebrate Evan's birthday.  It's a funny memory anyway.  Ha! 
Mattox and Grayson did seem pretty excited in line and didn't release the storm until they got too close.  

Grayson did enjoy having his own little Easter egg hunt at the park. 

On Sunday morning, the boys did get some baskets full of treats.  
Evan and Brody got baskets filled with candy filled eggs, silly string, and water squirters. 

Mattox and Grayson got some chocolate bunnies, bunny sunglasses, and pool floats. 

I just had to hear Brody read his funny card.  It said the Easter bunny would leave lots of treats for him with the picture of a chocolate Easter bunny leave a trail of "chocolate" pieces behind him.  He thought it was hilarious!

Mattox looked pretty adorable in his bunny glasses, and Evan counted his chocolate. 

Mattox and Grayson were the cutest little bunnies. 

They made me try it on too. 

Grayson got to try one of his chocolate marshmallow bunnies. 

Then, the boys got their picture made with an even better Easter bunny.  Okay, Mattox still may not have liked him.  Ha! 

My cuties dressed alike for Easter.  I don't know how much longer I can pull this incredible feat off. 

I love my boys! 

The boys were not being as cooperative for Daddy. 

But we did get a couple decent shots. 

Our official Easter family picture from church.  Everyone was looking and almost everyone was smiling. 

Daddy and his little mini man posed for a sweet picture while Brody wanted one solo. 

After church, there was an Easter egg hunt for all the kids' age groups. Mattox's group was first.  

Mattox did so well finding the eggs by himself and putting them in his basket.  He has grown so much this year. Grayson mostly just watched. 

He is getting so big. 

Brody was very fast in his group.  

So many colorful eggs. 

Evan's group was a bit more competitive although they all received the same prizes at the end. 

We did get to take Mattie some Easter flowers earlier in the month when we visited NC.  We made her an Easter basket full of pretty flowers. 

Big brothers love their little sister.  Her little brothers were sleeping in the car. 

I love that these boys still remember and love their sister.  I hope they will always cherish these special moments together.  Happy Easter, Mattie! 


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