Welcome to the Hickstionary, a landing spot for all things H family.
I'm Heidi. He's Rusty. And together we have our beautiful babe, Beckett and a furry menace, Dakota.
I mostly use this space to brag about how awesome the kid is, whine about how naughty the dog is & share an occasional deep thought.
Thanks for hanging out with us as we figure out this [blessed] life!

If you are looking for my photography blog (where words don't tend to fall out of my mouth nearly as freely), visit {captured by} heidi.

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

tree farm

We visited the tree farm for the first time ever this year… and got our first ever real tree! Super exciting stuff! We had a great time picking out our (little) tree. (I wasn't brave enough for a big one yet… as it turns out, I'm not good at watering these things so the little tree with no lights is probably a good fit for our family….) B picked out the tree. Daddy cut it down. Mommy took pictures.. And B decorated it (several days later when we finally brought it inside and set it up for him). As a bonus, the tree farm has yummy drinks and snacks inside once you pick out your tree… AND a free ornament for your tree (though we managed to lose ours before we got home). Super fun experience. And a super cute tree to remember it by.

More pictures on the cbh blog… (and if I manage to get our Christmas cards out, there's more there too…) ;)

We may need to add this to the Christmas traditions list… along with gingerbread house decorating which B is currently requesting…. we shall see. :)



Friday, December 12, 2014

stream of consciousness

B is sleeping (in a bed he says he wants to trade in for a new one because 'this one always gets wet.' yes, we let him take a cup of water to bed). Dakota is sleeping. R is at basketball (shocking I know). My work computer is backed up with downloads and uploads so editing isn't an option (though maybe I shouldn't be stealing the internet bandwidth from those uploads right now…). And while my house is a disaster and in desperate need of a deep cleaning, I'm too exhausted to move right this minute.

Not zombie state exhausted (like I've been most of the last 25 weeks) because my thyroid has finally leveled off (hallelujah!), but still pretty flippin' tired. I started sleep training our littlest this week. Yes, I'm attempting to sleep train a fetus. You can totally laugh but I think (or maybe am wishfully hoping) that it's working. From weeks 20-24 she was up 8pm-midnight and 4am-8am (solid). Since we started 'sleep training' she's been all over the place but has at least been sleeping more than four hours at night. I'll take that for now.

My sleep training consists of trying my hardest to keep her awake during the day. I've been drinking way too much juice during this process. I've also been eating way too many Christmas goodies. Did I mention my glucose test is a very short couple weeks away? Right after Christmas. Isn't that great timing?

Speaking of Christmas, the resident three year old is BEYOND excited for it. He's slightly worried if there's no snow there will be no Christmas but we're working through that. He got a letter in the mail from Santa yesterday and read it no less than 50 times. Each time paraphrasing the letter and saying, "Dear [B], You have been very good. You are on the nice list. And your mommy is too!" One time or two he added in a, "I really like that mountain you made" cause he totally made a mountain pile out of the couch cushions and possibly thought that would get him in trouble. But if Santa approves, no foul, right? Smart thinking, kid. He's counting down the days with is Advent. There's something like 12 days left (is that even possible?).

That means it's been nearly a year since I last gave birth. I'm always reminded when I get my appointment overviews and they say multiparous pregnancy. There's always lots of reminders. Currently, it's the baby bangs growing in. They took about a year with B though I thought breastfeeding may have had something to do it with. Turns out I'm just a late bloomer (uh, bang grower?). I figure once these are in it will be time to start the process over again. Maybe a shaved style is the way to go instead?

I have no transition from talking about shaving my head….

So I made a nursery inspiration board. I had all the ideas floating around in my head for awhile but I finally put them together in a nursery casserole. There's potential there. I feel like it's taking a natural/whimsical theme if that could be a theme. This pic sums it up best I think. (Source.)



I hope to have B make some of these for his sister's room. His should turn out just like that I imagine. ;)

I plan to pull the colors from my grandma's afghan. There's a blog post written on that somewhere but I may have lost it in the inter webs.

As another nod to my grandma, I have high hopes of making a bird mobile. It may be slightly out of my crafting range but we'll see… I'm also loving 'bird' middle names. Wren was the front runner for me but R is a hard sell. I THINK we have decided on another middle name though. It's a name from one of my grandma's and one of his and a nod to another one of my grandma's. I sortofkindof mentioned it in front of his grandma and she'll totally know it was R who didn't want to use it now if we don't. No pressure though, hun. ;)

The first name is set and on a stocking, which is as good as the birth certificate in this house. B will tell you if you ask though no one has been able to decipher what it is his sweet little voice is saying. (Once you know it you will totally kick yourself that you couldn't figure out that's what he was saying.)

Speaking of things he's saying… he is cracking us up these days. Two is awesome but three isn't so bad. He's pretty much the funniest person I know (even more funny than his dad) (no offense, R). Today, R came home quick at lunch time and B said hold on… he pretended his hand was a phone and 'dialed' to make a call. He proceeded to have a conversation with the tickle monster whom he claims told him to tickle his daddy. Every since we called Santa he's been asking to call the tickle monster. I guess he found the number.

Okay, time to go check on the uploads and figure out something to feed the boys. These days we pretty much fend for ourselves. Basketball sack lunches for R, PB sandwiches (or whatever his current obsession is) for B, and whatever I can stomach. Nothing has been sounding good but usually once I start eating it's okay. It's just the figuring out what to try to eat that's rough.

Probably more salted caramel chocolates and juice in the name of sleep training. Wish me luck on that… and the glucose test. ;)




Sunday, November 30, 2014

'twas twenty five nights before Christmas…

….and we started our official countdown. Which doesn't really mean much except every once in awhile I will realize the date and that there aren't very many days left till Christmas and will say, 'wow this year is going by fast!' That said… Here's our list of advent ideas from two years ago. We still pull a few from it now and then and will add to it too. Like the addition of pictures in Christmas jammies this year….

Christmas Fun (aka not losing my sanity as basketball season gets in full swing) : 

X 1. Visit Santa at Bass Pro

X 2. Pick out a new Christmas book (he actually got a new one from his cousin and a new one from his grandma already so they covered us there this year!) :)


X 3. Find Elf

4. Make paper snowflakes and snowballs (wadded up paper balls) and have a 'snowball fight')

5. Choose a friend from the local angel tree to shop for

6. Wrap presents 

7. Christmas movie night (with popcorn and green & red M&Ms)

8. Christmas with the OK family (make peppermint play doh)

9. Make Christmas craft (reindeer feet?)

10. Choose something from the 'serving friends' list to complete

11. Decorate cookies/make Christmas treats

12. Caroling (with cookies but maybe not so much singing)

13. Take a meal to someone

14. Sock snowball fight

15. Make Christmas ornaments

16. Christmas brunch with Santa

17. Craft time at Center Grove

18. Hot cocoa by the fire (straight from the 'north pole hot cocoa bar' of course)

19. Take Christmas pictures at the tree farm (bonus: get first real tree) 

20. Visit the library to read Christmas books

21. Take a treat to neighbors

22. Christmas at the cabins (updated to the water park)

23. Read the Christmas story

24. Christmas Eve church

25. 'camp out' under the Christmas tree (sleep in the living room)

BONUS:

X 26. Pictures in Christmas jammies

27. North Pole train ride 

Likely to get cut this year: 

Jolly Holiday Lights (B loved it last year and I think he would love it again but I'm not sure our schedules are going to work for it this year)

Things I'd love to add some year:

Festival of trees
Downtown walking 
Disney on Ice
Christmas Play at the Playhouse
Do a tree lighting
Sleigh ride at Jingle in the Junction
Living History Farms Family Christmas

What fun things do you do to celebrate the Christmas season?!?





Monday, November 24, 2014

One last word on TWOs



Only slightly overdue at 10 days past his birthday…. and I still haven't put a post together in my mind. I have no idea how to sum up two, my most favorite age, into a little blog post -and how to fully embrace three. I might get around to writing more on that later… but for now… TWO.

I've spent a lot of time working the two year old scene. It was always my favorite at the daycare and I've never met a two year old that isn't pure awesome. It's a pretty great year.

And for B, that was no exception. I can count on my fingers the number of days B experienced the 'terrible twos' and mostly, every other day of two was pretty flippin' fantastic. Seriously.

TWO brought…..

Crazy development in the language area. He's pretty much a jabber box. (We have no idea where he gets it….) ;) He carries on full conversations with complete strangers and most people can understand him pretty easily (even over the phone which has been a great thing for him).

More growth. He's over 40" tall (do you know I left his three year check and didn't even ask how tall he was when they measured him? They forgot to give me his sheet so when R asked his current stats… I had no idea) and around 37lbs (I don't actually remember that number either… bad mom).

Potty training. He pretty much started the process on his own right before he even turned two. He had a setback in there but was completely out of diapers by the beginning of this year (except for bedtime), then stopped making messes in those diapers this summer (I wasn't sure that part would ever come… ugh). Currently, he will go into a public restroom, lock the door, use the restroom, pull his pants back up, come out, and wash his hands… all without his mama's help. It wasn't a big deal when he was doing this at home in sweat pants but he started doing it in public in jeans (those are hard to get up, right?) and it about did me in. He should not be that big.

Social growth. He loves spending time with his friends and he talks about them all the time. He has favorite buddies, favorite neighbors, favorite babysitters, favorite babies at Ms Kelli's, etc. He talks about all these people and his cousins and other family all the time. He often asks to FaceTime and/or text different people. He has gotten so much better at sharing- he's totally becoming empathetic and I love seeing that trait in him. He already loves his sister fiercely and it warms my heart so much. He is a total little lover. He randomly will say, 'Hey mommy. (Pause for me to say, yes.) I love you.' It pretty much melts my heart ever time. He's started saying it to other people too and it's so fun to hear him tell people he loves them (out of the blue, without prompting). Even if I wasn't super biased, I would tell you he's the sweetest/loviest little boy I've ever met.

Cognitive. Two is obviously a sponge age and was no different for B. He soaks up seriously every thing around him. He spends more than 90% of his time with me and he still randomly tells me about things I have no idea where he learned them. Awhile back we were throwing our stuff away at the BBQ place and B saw the recycling logo. He told us that bin was just for recyclables and explained that whole thing to us. One of my favorite things is asking him to recount his days or to tell me about what he learned at Sunday School or what he did while he was with someone else (babysitter, grandma, cousins, etc). He tells the best stories and doesn't leave out many details. I would guess about 90% of his stories are pretty accurate. Sometimes… the 10% that's not? When he gets caught or wants to do something naughty and tries to get away with it. Not long ago he put his hands/arm into a gun shape and was pretending to 'shoot up' everybody in the house. His dad said we don't point guns or pretend guns at people. He said, 'Uh huh aunt Kerry said I can do it.' When we texted her for the rest of the story and told him her response he totally knew he had been caught. The look on his face when he said, 'whoops..' was priceless. He 'reads' several books from memorization right now. And can 'read' several baby board books (he reads them to his sister… awwww…). He knows all of his colors and numbers and usually all of his letters (if we don't keep working on those often, he forgets them pretty quick). He can count as high as he wants (ha)… Typically that number is 0. But if you give him an incentive to count for something he can count to the teens. (I'm also told he counts for other people when his mama isn't around. Of course.) You can tell his mama is a teacher as he gets his teacher voice out with his toys, dog, friends and even me. I'll ask him a question which he'll follow up with a question for me (cause I totally do that to him all the time).

More chores. We added to his chore list and it now includes more cleaning, putting dishes away out of the dish washer, taking Dakota out and feeding Dakota. He can do SO much around the house now, it's almost sad because he's so big to be doing all of that. He LOVES to help out and is always asking for things to do. He worked in the local clothing pantry all last week and was quite the little worker guy. He had a couple jobs down really well. He also loves to cook in the kitchen. He has his favorite smoothie recipes memorized and will gather all the ingredients up and get everything ready.


Highlights of the year….

13-14 Basketball season… this is fresh on my mind as we start a new year of it. Last year he sat through entire games and did awesome! This year (so far) hasn't proved to be as great. Hopefully he gets back into the grove of that soon.

Kansas City Christmas. Not long after his birthday last year, we met up with family in Kansas City for a super fun weekend. Not long after that, we stayed at a water park with the other side of the family and this might be where his hotel obsession began (he got to stay at several throughout the year).

Lots of weddings. Aunt Mal, Uncle Trav, Papa Kevin, Zach C. He even got to be a ring bearer for a couple of them! At Zach's wedding, he partied all night long. He would have made it to midnight but his mama tapped out about a quarter till. The following week he told us he was a 'party animal.' He has another wedding to go to next spring and he's already asking about it.

Too many visits to the hospital. B himself only had two Dr visits his entire year of two (and he requested both of them). He somehow managed to stay super healthy that year (praying for more of the same this year!). Lots of people he loves though spent too much time in the hospital and he became pretty familiar with a couple of the area hospitals. He can spot them a mile away now and if you pull into a parking ramp he assumes you're at a hospital.

Another flight to Aunt Mal's in Arizona (for the wedding). He loves flying and every time he sees a plane or sees people flying on tv he asks if he can go to Aunt Mal's.

A summer vacation. We road tripped with grandma to Chicago, Indiana Dunes, and Michigan. He became OBSESSED with hotels on this trip (we did stay in some pretty nice ones!). That was in July and there literally hasn't been a full week since that he hasn't asked to go to a hotel.

100 Parks! He became a playground legend. It was pretty much the best idea ever. (Thanks, Molly!) Story times at the library (his fave), lots of free music classes (we try to hit up every demo class that's offered in the area), and super fun play dates (he has the best friends). We didn't make it to the zoo as many times as the previous year (we won't likely buy a pass this coming year). We tried to get to the orchard as often but got a little and only made it a handful of times (still super fun though). He rode Thomas the Train. He visited a Children's Museum. He went to some baseball games (Chicago Cubs, I Cubs, and whichever spring training game it was we went to in Phoenix…). He did his first NBA game (much to his daddy's delight), a pre-season Golden State Warriors game here at Wells. Completed his first official Easter egg hunt. Competed in his first official race (the turkey trot), Rode his first tractor (with grandpa). Ate his first dutch letter while on his first Pella visit. Dressed up like Buzz a hundred times. A super hero about as many times. Finally started (kind of) posing for pictures for me. Got upset watching mommy and daddy zipline (I don't blame him!). Loved every trip he took to Ledges state park. Started memorizing and making up dances to all his favorite songs. Attended his first Slater 4th of July festivities (our little family at the fireworks was one of my most favorite memories of the year). Explored down town Des Moines. Loved visiting the sculpture park (a few times). Had his first Snookies ice cream cone (mine too). Started praying without prompt. Gained an amazing Jesus story. Discovered Jester Park. Had a blast at the Iowa State Fair. Discovered amusement park rides. Went to not enough (in his eyes) ISU football games. Rode another pony. Started sleeping in a big boy bed! Dressed up as Tic Toc Croc for Halloween. Then Max the following day (because he was tired of being mistaken for a dragon…).

Whew. I'm sure I'm forgetting a whole lot in there… but two- you sure were awesome.

B- I had such a great year with you little buddy. I LOVE watching you grow and learn and I love seeing more of your little personality shine through all of the time. You have such a tender heart and you are so sweet and loving. You're a little wild man too though. Your silly antics keep me laughing all day, every day. You kind of think you're funny too… You have the BEST giggle that turns into the best deep belly laugh. You smile with your whole self (you have since you were a tiny baby). You give the best bear hugs and you're definitely my best boy. (You always like to remind me daddy is my best boy too.) :) I love that your favorite color is green 'because mommy's favorite color is green' but I know you'll start developing your own ideas about how mommy is not all that cool all too soon. It might be a little hard on mama but I'm mostly okay with that. I love watching you become the little man you are becoming. I am so blessed I get to be your mama on this journey. You are so very loved sweet boy!



Saturday, November 22, 2014

'tis the season…. for basketball

Top two signs that basketball season is in full swing (and that B is already missing daddy)…..

1. As we're walking into the high school B says, "My daddy lives here!" 

2. B managed to sneak into the huddle tonight. (At least he was nodding in agreement to everything Coach Daddy was saying and not protesting his play ideas..)




Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Decorating on the Cheap.

Emphasis on the cheap.

I hate spending money on home decor. Especially since I typically get bored with it but can't justify switching it out if I've spent any money on it.

I've never taken the time to figure out what exactly in our house we've spent money on but I do know it's not much. I can count the pieces of furniture we've purchased on one hand. I've been known to pull furniture off of curbs as close as next door neighbors. No shame.

Nearly everything in our house is someone else's junk (and some of it literally from the dump) so I always (always) laugh when someone says our house looks cute. I laugh extra hard when they ask for help decorating.

I would be horrible at helping you decorate.

To prove that point, here are my biggest decorating tips:

1.) Stay alert while driving. 

Yes, it's important to stay alert to watch for deer and other crazy drivers but I'm actually talking about keeping your eyes peeled to the curb. Some of my favorite pieces are off other people's curbs. I get slightly nervous when someone new (usually a photog client I don't know very well) compliments a curb piece as I'm hoping it wasn't off their curb. When I met my SIL's SIL and she told me where she lived I about died of embarrassment because I had recently snagged a couple end tables off her curb. Since getting over that incident, I've taken on a little Garth Brook's attitude (Shameless…) and will go right up to the neighbor's house and grab their good junk before trash day. One neighbor was in our house and complimented a piece I had snagged off her curb. She didn't even recognize it anymore. No shame.

2.) Gladly accept junk with gratitude.

My uncle is a trash man (among other titles he carries in my small hometown). Once in awhile he will bring my mom straight up trash. I questioned her reasoning behind accepting all of it and she said you never turn down the true junk because they might stop bringing you the good stuff. Words to live by my friends. When people know you love junk, people love to unload their junk on you. Sometimes, it might actually be junk. A few times I've gladly accepted pieces I thought I could work with only to have them sit in project purgatory with no plan working out for them. They ended up on my curb. But you never turn down the junk (even if it really is junk) cause they might stop giving you the good stuff. Along those same lines, I've accepted pieces I had no clue what to do with and those have ended up being some of my fave projects. (Some friends gave us some HUGE windows when they replaced theirs. I had no clue what to do with them so they sat in our basement for years. When I finally had an idea to use them, I was so glad I hadn't gotten rid of them!) We've been blessed with the best junk from people!! I swear nearly everything we get a compliment on in our house is a hand me down from someone else! (Thanks junk suppliers- you're the best!!) :)

3.) Hoard craft supplies.

Some of mine is 10+ years old but still works great. Save those little scraps. Save the ribbons off cute packages (especially the Lisa Leonard ones). Heck, I even save the brown packing paper that comes in the mail. You can use all of it! I swear! (Even though it may take a decade or so to come up with a plan for it.) ;)

4.) Know your limits and stick to 'em.

I have lots of rules on how much I'll spend (or rather, won't spend) on items. My favorite price is free. My second favorite is clearance. I'm not likely to spend more than that unless it's something I really want. If I'm on the hunt for something I come up with a price in my mind that I'm willing to spend on it and I won't go over that price. (That is if I've absolutely exhausted all my sources for finding it free.)

5.) If possible, marry a patient man and move to a house with plenty of storage.

Okay, this one might be too late for some of you but my biggest assets in DIYing on the fly are having a (very) patient man and a (very patient) storage room. DIYing with junk takes time and patience. Time to find the right pieces, time to figure out what the heck the plan is, time to finish (or you know, start) the projects. Time. And lots of it. I wasn't kidding when I said finding the mini trees was like winning a treasure hunt for me. I've been searching for them literally two years. I'm currently on the hunt for Christmassy scarves. If you have some you want to unload and want to save me the two year hunt, I'll gladly accept them with gratitude. ;)

So those are my best decorating tips. Maybe not what you were expecting but definitely rules to live by if you don't mind living in a house full of other people's trash discarded treasures. :)





Monday, November 17, 2014

decking the halls



It's currently in the single digit(s?) here and we have a whole lotta white stuff in the yard. I've heard rumors it's supposed to be cold pretty much forever (or at least until the end of March). Which seems like a long time to hate the cold and snow. We never (seriously, ever… except last year) decorate for Christmas before Thanksgiving but the gentle snow fall last Saturday made it pretty hard not to! (Other factors… R has basketball pretty much every day for the rest of our lives…. Or at least it feels like it! And once I took B's birthday party decor down, I wasn't going to put fall decor out again for just a couple weeks.)

So Decking the Halls '14 began!

Our upstairs is mostly finished… I added several crafty projects and moved some stuff around so it looks quite a bit different than it has in years past but the grand total spent on the changes: $2.50! (I bought some mini trees for the table/mantel at Overflow Thrift Store.) We haven't touched the basement yet and we've only added one tree outside (because the tin it's in appropriately says, 'baby it's cold outside!)* so we still have a ways to go but the upstairs is putting us all in the Christmas cheer! (We've had hot cocoa or egg nog every night since and B even busted out his new Christmas jammies from Aunt Kerry tonight!)

My fave Christmas decorating tool this year is the Silhouette! I had a bunch of vinyl on hand so it didn't cost me anything to add a whole ton of Christmas goodness to stuff around the house. Some of my faves:




The 'Happy Holidays' sign (middle picture) was a gift from Ali at What's Your Sign Designs. She has the CUTEST Christmas stuff in her shop if you aren't feeling crafty this year! If you are feeling crafty, you should totally buy a share to the community silhouette and come craft with me! :)

Other crafting: a few book page trees (Once Was and Junk Refunkery had the cutest ones at Junk Jubilee this year so I tried to make my own version of those) and I added those thrift store trees to the mix (total treasure hunt score- I've looked for them the last two Christmases and never lucked out). We stuck our wedding tree in a tin (I think it came from my mom's house? Or my uncle found it in the trash? Or something like that?) and stuck a whole bunch of pallet boards around the house. Quite a bit of change for a total of $2.50!

So what about your house? Have you busted out the Christmas music and twinkle lights yet?!


37
DAYS!


*R may have also put the lights up and turned them on. It was kind of a joke with him and one of the neighbors and I'm pretty sure he thought I would protest but B loves it so who am I to be a scrooge? :)

Friday, November 14, 2014

Interview with a three year old

My friend Molly interviews her girls each year and I've been so anxious to get to do this with B! We tried last year but as far as we got was his favorite color was blue. Most of the questions below are hers. I added/edited a few to fit B. Here's what he came up with. (Answers word for word, my added commentary in parenthesis.) :) 

1. What is your favorite color? Green and my mommy likes green too and my daddy likes red!

2. What is your favorite food? Cookies! (He told the Dr it was cheese at his check up so that was a slight improvement… he also really loves Smoothies and PB sandwiches) 

3. What is your favorite drink? Water?

4. What do you want to be when you grow up? Just like daddy and I wanna go to college! (Awww)

5. What is your favorite toy? A dump truck just like this one (full disclosure- he rarely plays with the dump truck but happened to be playing with it during the interview. He spends most of his time playing with trains and tractors!)

6. What is your favorite game to play? hide n seek!

7. What is your favorite movie? Dinosaurs (Land Before Time- but he also loves the Lego movie, Cars and Airplanes… too much tv?)

8. What is your favorite type of ice cream? Yellow! (Vanilla)

9. Where is your favorite place to be? The ice cream place we went to last night (more like a week ago-- we went to the ice cream capital of the world)

10. What is your favorite book? My baby books for my baby sister! (He reads to her all the time!)

11. What is your favorite TV show? Toy Story Ghost Oooooohhhhh (Toy Story of Terror)

12. Who is your best friend? Grandma 

13. What is your favorite thing to do outside? play trucks

14. What is your favorite thing to wear? Pants, underwear, shirt (which is funny because he usually just asks if he can nakey around) :)

15. What is your favorite thing to do with mommy? play dance songs

16. What is your favorite thing to do with daddy? play toys with daddy

17. What is your favorite chore? feed Dakota

18. What is your favorite thing to do on vacation? stay at the hotel

19. What is your favorite song? bout that bass bout that bass

20. Where is your favorite place to go? park! (we made it to 100 this year… another idea I got from Molly!)

Saturday, November 8, 2014

An Airplane Party Fit For An (Almost) Three Year Old

As of today, I still have a two year old (thank goodness!) but Mr. B had a big celebration today cause he's getting super excited to turn THREE soon… (tear… ). 

He chose an airplane theme- which I was super excited for since it was his original choice last year before switching to trucks and also because his room is filled with great plan decor. It made party prep super easy. Other than food, we spent $1 on paper straws and $2 on scrapbook paper. His own airplane garb made up the rest of the party scene. We asked him what he wanted for food… cake, cookies and alligator (gatorade). He couldn't decide on food so we went with pizza again cause we're super lazy resourceful. He called Uncle Doyle this week and asked for ice cream and Uncle Doyle obliged. Once again making it super easy party prep for this little guy. He picked out his cake mix (blue suede… it was supposed to taste like blueberries?) and did nearly all the work on the cake- He gathered ingredients, ran the mixer (with help) and poured batter into pans. He mixed up the frosting (with help) and taste tested it as it was going on the cake.* He helped cut clouds out of fondant and stuck everything together (full disclosure, his clouds actually ended up looking better than mine but I had already stuck mine to the front.. bummer). 

As I looked at our wonky, leaning creation, I wondered if he would ever look back at party pictures and wonder why all his friends had store bought wedding birthday cakes for their parties while he didn't. But I kinda love the memories we make working in the kitchen together too so I'm hoping he'll be cool with that instead. He will. Right? (Right?!) (For the record… no judgement from me on the fancy cakes. I think they're awesome. I'm just too cheap to pay someone to make a cake for me!) ;)

*Funny story…. I told him no more licks cause he would get a tummy ache. He stole two more licks before grinning at me and said, "As it turns out, I DIDN'T get a tummy ache." I was laughing too hard to care about the stolen frosting. I love this age!


Other party prep included B calling everyone he knows and making sure they were coming to his party. He called one grandma several times to check and even asked if we could call the tickle monster to make sure he could make it. He helped me make the birthday banner (anyone having a plane party and want it?) and helped gather plane garb. He then was the official greeter and hugger of the day and had a blast playing with everyone. ….And he also enjoyed eating cake and ice cream and opening presents too…  ;) 

Big thanks to everyone that loves on our little guy. He is super spoiled by all of you and we are thankful for each and every one of you guys! I think all the toys he got today should keep him busy for the next 16 years. :)

P.S. Be sure to check out one of my fave pics below… the cousins on the couch pic. It's a tradition so we're probably gonna have to keep the couch forever. Just kidding. Kind of.













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