Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Pure Joy!

When was the last time you did something that made you feel like this?

And just because he looked cute...

And this one too...

Monday, September 27, 2010

Watch Out Aaron

Here comes trouble!

Sunday Afternoon

My new favorite picture of the three boys.  I love these guys.

The only child who willingly looked at the camera.

Sunday, September 26, 2010


(Kids Understanding Deployment Operations)

Ryan took Clayton to Operation KUDOs at the base this morning.  The event is hosted periodically to help kids understand what happens when their parents deploy.  There was a lot to do, and I can't imagine how much work must have gone into pulling this off for the kids.  I actually had to take notes in order to write this post.

When Ryan and Clayton arrived they went through a processing line in the same location Ryan processes when he deploys.  Clayton got his dog tags, mobility bag, orders, and processing check list.  Then he visited with legal, finance, the chaplain, public health, medical, and immunizations.  After the processing line, they met in an auditorium where they had a deployment pep rally led by the vice wing commander.  They were also briefed on their deployment mission. 
Receiving his processing check list

Then it was off to the buses to take them to the flight line where they boarded the E-3 that would "fly" them to Camp Courage.  Once they "arrived" they were taken to a hangar where there were several different activities for the kids, including a med tent where they could learn about basic first aid, a weapons display, and the opportunity to put on chem gear.  Ryan and Clayton also learned about flag folding and folded mini US flags for deployed troops.

Getting on board

Touring Daddy's plane

Oxygen mask

Operating the AWACS



After lunch there was a canine show and an inflatable slide.  Clayton also won a set of Legos in a raffle.  It was certainly a busy day, and Clayton was completely beat by the end.

This evening Brandy, one of our dearest Air Force friends, voluteered to keep all three of our kids so Ryan and I could enjoy an evening out alone.  She is so brave.  We took her up on her offer and indulged ourselves at The Cheesecake Factory... alone... where the only food I cut up was my own.  Brandy said everything went fine, but I have a feeling that after keeping our boys, she'll be sleeping well tonight.

Saturday, September 25, 2010

Backyard Camping

Ryan and Clayton had a backyard campout earlier this week.  I had wanted them to do this for a while, and it's finally cool enough now.  Ryan put up the tent the day before, and the boys had thoroughly enjoyed playing in it.  We haven't done any camping with the boys, so when we started talking about sleeping out there, I'm not sure Clayton fully comprehended what we meant.  However, Tuesday night came, and Clayton was thrilled to haul all the stuff out.  He was even more excited when I popped some popcorn and brought out the portable DVD player.  They enjoyed watching some VeggieTales and both fell asleep during the movie.  At seven o'clock I woke up to a knock at the back door, and there was Clayton, happy as can be. 

 Getting all set up

Happy campers


Sunday, September 19, 2010


Baby Smurf

No, it's not Clayton this time, but winter is coming, so I'm sure he'll be smurf-like in no time.  Poor kid.

The other day I was busy in the kitchen.  Clayton was up, but Eli was still napping, so I felt it was safe to lay Aaron down on the floor in the living room.  This cannot be done when Eli is roaming.  After a while I realized it was very quiet in the living room.  At first glance I was pleased to see Clayton happily entertaining Aaron.  Then I did a second take because something blue caught my eye.  Sure enough, Clayton was leaning over Aaron, and there was something very small and blue very near to Aaron's mouth. 

Fruit snacks!  I had given Clayton a little baggie of them, and he was sharing with Aaron.  Aaron was completely going to town on a blue fruit snack that Clayton was holding up to his lips.  I didn't freak out.  I just calmly asked Clayton to stop.  Then we had the conversation about how babies only eat special milk and that although it is very nice to share, we shouldn't share fruit snacks or any other food with Aaron until he is a lot bigger.

These pictures are a little blurry, but you get the picture.

The blue mess

While cleaning him up, I realized his tongue was pretty blue too.  Must have been good.

Thursday, September 16, 2010

A Mom Can Dream

I wish!  One day...

Sunday, September 5, 2010

Camera Update

Because I know you all care, most of the recent pictures on the blog have been taken with our new camera.  The old camera is still gone.  Krista, I'm just about to throw away the box to the new one, so I'm sure the old one will show up soon.

Take Me out to the Ball Game

Saturday morning we were able to make it downtown to see the Redhawks baseball game.  Yes, we're all dressed in our Aggie gear because it was A&M's opening game day, and yes, we received just a small amount of heckling from all the Sooners around us, but I think the Sooners just feel sorry for the Aggies, so it wasn't too bad.  We had a great time.  The weather was amazing, and the boys were very well behaved.  The game was practically empty, so we had our choice of great seats, and the boys had a lot of room to roam during the game.  This was Aaron and Eli's first professional baseball game. 

We were taking a couple pictures of the boys, and a couple in front of us offered to take our picture together.  This is our first picture of the five of us.  I don't know why we haven't done this yet, but we haven't.  It's a little hard to see Aaron, but he's there.  So here we are, the five of us.

Afterward we got pizza and walked around Bricktown a little.  By this time the boys were beat.  We stopped for gas on the way home, and this was the scene. 

Too bad only Eli stayed asleep once we got home.

Saturday, September 4, 2010

Day at the Park

The weather here has been amazing the last couple days, almost cool.  Ryan was off on Friday, so we took advantage of the weather and spent a little time at the park.

The boys actually willingly posed for a couple pictures.

Then they took turns giving Aaron kisses.  It was so sweet.

We walked a little on the trail.  Clayton walked about 50 feet.

Then he traded Eli for his spot in the stroller.  Eli is actually a much faster walker, so it worked out for us all.

Long story, short... As we were leaving for the park, I grabbed two child size ball caps.  When we got to the park we realized a child sized ball cap no longer fits Eli.  His head is LARGE.  On the way back to the car we were worried about how much sun Eli's head was getting.  Ryan tried to sqeeze Aaron's hat on Eli's head.  Eli was actually pretty happy about wearing it, but don't worry.  I didn't let him wear it very far.  I do however love how serious Eli looks in this picture.

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Gettin' Some Shut-eye

Here are a few recent pictures of how people sleep around here.

1. Aaron

Aaron sleeps in the pack n' play in our room.  He's doing really well with nights now.  A typical night is nursing and bed at 11:30pm, nurse between 3 and 4am, nurse and wake around 8am.  The key is going back to sleep in the middle of the night.  That part wasn't so easy in the beginning, but he's getting it down now.  Aaron LOVES to be swaddled.  He will complain about it while you're wrapping him up, but once he's all contained, he's a much happier baby and a much better sleeper.  I love these swaddle blankets.  I was able to find very lightweight cotton ones, and they stay swaddled very nicely.

2. Eli

Eli LOVES his crib.  Sometimes he needs a little time out and will beg to get in there.  He'll just hang out in there for a half hour or so and feel much better.  He LOVES his binkies, which are only allowed in the crib.  He needs one for his mouth and one for his hand.  He's really into hanging his feet out the sides of the crib these days.  The minute I put him into the crib, he gets in this position, and he usually stays that way.  Eli is still my great sleeper.  He naps 2 to 3 hours in the afternoon.  He goes to bed around 8pm and will usually sleep until after 9am, sometimes 10am.  If we have to be anywhere in the mornings I have to wake him to get there on time.  He's our snoozer.

3.  Clayton

Clayton is almost 4 1/2 years old now.  Most days he still needs a nap, but most days he doesn't want to nap.  My rule is that he has to stay quietly in his room for two hours.  He will usually drift off, but somedays he fights harder than others.  This day he fought the nap and staying in his room particularly hard, but eventually the nap won, apparently before Clayton could get in bed.  I love that he's still holding onto his sunglasses.

Clayton also goes to bed around 8pm, but sometimes it takes a while to fall asleep.  This is his nap mat from preschool.  The last two nights he's gotten out of bed, into his closet, dug out the mat, and fallen asleep on it.  Good thing we spent all that money on the new bunkbeds. 

4 & 5. Ryan and I don't look as cute as these boys when we sleep, so we don't need to post pictures of that.