Saturday, November 17, 2012

Happy 4th Mr. Roman

Roman, Roman, Roman. We've had quite a few posts about you this year. I think cause you're so mischievous. And a stinker. That's right, you're a little stinker and you know it. And you're proud of it, too. 

This little guy just makes me so happy all over. He drives me absolutely batty most of the time, mostly because it's so hard to discipline someone when you can barely keep a straight face! 

He's been so excited for his birthday, we've literally been counting down since August. He was asking even before that. He is SO READY to be FOUR. Three is just so last year. Nobody's three anymore, except maybe the babies. And Roman is not a baby. Although I did ask him if he would just stay three this year and stop growing and his biggest concern was the presents. So I told him we'd still have a party, but he had to promise not to turn four yet. He ALMOST agreed to it. 

Can I just say we measured him on our cute giant ruler board and he has grown ONE INCH since AUGUST? Maybe I just don't realize how fast kids are still growing at that age, but man! At least I'll be keeping track now that I have that thing. I mean, you always look back from year to year and see the evidence in the pictures, but you don't think of it in terms of picking up an inch in three and a half months. 

Xandri's birthday was kind of hard, because his was just around the corner (we tried celebrating separately this year) and everything she had for her birthday he wanted for his. He switched some things up, though. Like cookie cereal for breakfast and cookies for lunch. He requested cheese pizza for dinner, then halfway through making it he said, "No, Mom, I wanted quesadillas!" Then at actual dinner he proceeded to eat half of Avril's non-cheese pizza. She was not so pleased at that turn of events. 

He was obviously thrilled to see what awaited him in the kitchen. Especially getting to finally open his blue card-- a LEGO card, no less! Thank you, Auntie Camas!

Max loved the balloons again. This time we skipped the helium and just taped them by their strings to the cabinets. That worked out well for Max who just batted at them while standing on the stool saying, "Ba! Ba!"
Note the shiner-- he fell down the steps out the side door the day before. That was a very sad time. Also note the toothbrush (aka "utt") in his hand. (So named because it's "up"). He LOVES the taste of toothpaste.

So after breakfast since it was a school morning, we quickly adjourned to the living room for the scavenger hunt. It wasn't long-lasting since he basically got three things besides the GIANT TRAIN TABLE that is now our coffee table in the living room. It was still in the box, so I don't think he was as initially impressed as later- but judging by the look on his face in the first couple of shots here I think it was enough. 

Once we got the girls off to school it was time to assemble the table. 

A word here about toy/furniture assembly. I actually like it. It's like a puzzle for me. I like sitting down with the instructions and going from step to step, completing them neatly in order and accounting for all pieces. 
So, for me, this wasn't a problem. Initially. But once I got the table. And the drawers. And the hardware all assembled and still had the spiral tower, the airport, and the control tower with their 22 itty bitty A. screws and their 34 itty bitty B. screws and their 8 little bit bigger C. screws... well, let's just say all gifts for the next several months will come preassembled. 

Halfway through assembly Tutu (Grandma Zan) showed up with a bucket. And it was FULL of dinosaurs- just like Sammy's bucket in his favorite story. 

Well, let's just say that before presents, he wanted to go to Chuck E. Cheese like Xandri did. And after? All thoughts of Chuck E. Cheese quickly faded away at the prospect of trains, cars and dinosaurs all in the same proximity. Then when the girls got home from school, the fun started all over again!

So then pizza for dinner, birthday cake to follow. As soon as those candles got lit, they got blown out- which earned a scandalized and scathing "ROMAN!!!" from Avril who then scolded him for not waiting till we sang and till he wished. So we relit the candles, at which point Xandri said, "Hey maybe now he'll turn 8!"

Happy Birthday song followed- and then:  

After several (8-10?) failed attempts he finally blew all those candles out! I think he's gotta be at least 12 by now. Or does failure to blow them out the first time subtract years? Huh. I'll check Wikipedia. 

Happy Birthday Roman! We love you and we're eagerly watching to see if you'll grow big like a giant this year!

Monday, November 12, 2012

Happy 6th Xandri!

My Xandri turned 6 on Saturday-- I can't believe how the time's gone. Six more years and she'll be 12-- adolescent, entering Young Women at church, practically grown up. Six more after that and she's 18, her own person and off to college and whatever else life holds for her. It makes me cry just thinking about it-- and makes me realize how precious the time I have with her (them!) really is. 

Trying to sit here and think of the words to describe this little girl fills me with such tenderness. Squirrely. Giggly. Silly. Wiggly. Busy. Distracted. Imaginative. Yellow kitty. Loving. Snuggly. Teasing. Spicy. Xandri.

Her birthday meals tell enough-- Ramen noodles for breakfast-- with nothing in them. Normally I put peas and tomatoes in in a weak effort to inject some degree of nutrition into the meal. Xandri doesn't believe in mixing foods. Almost ever. She hates peas. She wants the tomatoes on the side. Or not at all.

Lunch was cupcakes, applesauce and the little individual cereal boxes.

Dinner was her favorite- Cuban Black Bean Soup. Or just "bean soup" as she refers to it. She loves it. And she loves dipping her tortilla chips in it. Dessert was brownies (the Ghirardelli Triple Chocolate brownie mix from Costco) and ice cream cones. That girl has SUCH a sweet tooth!

So we decorated the kitchen with streamers and the birthday banner, breakfast out and ready to go. They each got to blow up balloons with the helium and I showed them the helium voice, which they loved. Avril was the only one who tried it, it was hilarious. 

A balloon dance party quickly ensued. 

The balloons, however, caused all sorts of distress for Max. When they were up, he wanted them down. When they were down, he wanted them up. He walked around the house half crying, half yelling for the better part of the morning, stressing about those horrible balloons. Which he's really not supposed to play with anyway, but I defy YOU to keep him away from them.

Then we moved to the living room for a birthday scavenger hunt. I think she wanted the presents wrapped AND hidden. Hmmm. Well. The Lazy Mom Method got two good years outta that tradition. Derek got her a toy grabber to pick up all her things with and they loved playing with it. Thanks Grandpa for the book! 

Since Roman's birthday follows Xandri's so quickly, I let him open his present from Grandpa as well. It was well-received.

After the morning festivities, we went to Chuck E. Cheese. Now Xandri is the only one who's actually been to Chuck E. Cheese and remembers it. So when I asked her what she wanted to do to celebrate her birthday, that was IT. She really wanted to share that experience with her siblings. That's another thing about that girl-- she shares what she loves. Experiences, that is, not candy. 
Just so we have that straight. 

Grabbed the mail on the way out and what did we find but a pink envelope addressed to Miss Xandri Zickgraf (there was a blue one for Mr. Roman as well, but we'll discuss that on his birthday when he opens it) just in time on her birthday from Auntie Camas. Thank you Auntie Camas, the princess was SOOO pretty!

The kids LOVED Chuck E. Cheese and Roman wants to go back tomorrow for his birthday. We brought Tutu along with us and she entertained Max, who was mostly enthralled with the basketball games. The kid loves balls. What can I say? Better get him into sports and pronto! 

I think the hardest part of the whole experience was the agonizing decision of what to spend your tickets on at the end. Do you go with the plastic rings and the little gooey bugs? Or go all out and get the princess tiara? In the end, she settled on one biggish thing, a really cool rubber bracelet that was really like 3-in-1, a top and a couple spiders. Yellow and purple. Smart choice, my girl.

After lunch, it was pool time. Scott pool-- water slide, rock climbing wall, kiddie pool, diving boards. That's all out fun right there!

Home for dinner and her new movie- Barbie and The Diamond Castle. It was everything a little girl could want-- sparkles and pink and purple everywhere, diamonds, beautiful princesses, dancing, singing, twin handsome princes that rocked a mean guitar, puppies, you name it, it was somewhere in this movie.

Finally, she turned 6 after blowing out her candles on the cake. I was slow getting the camera ready for this all-important moment, so the clearly all you see is the remnants of the candle. This girl is all business. 
The first picture is her self-proclaimes "Robot Face". Avril decided she needed to get in and show Xandri how to make the appropriate birthday wish cake face. 

I think she nailed it. 
 Happy Birthday my sweet little 6 year old. Try not to rush through the next six years quite so fast, ok?