April Birthday Boys

I hope I remember to take a picture of my two boys together every single April.  I so cherish these photos and look forward to watching Kase "catch" Kael! 








Happy birthday, Kase!

My littlest buddy is turning five today.  Five! I am so very aware of how short my time is with him before he heads off to kindergarten, and I must say that these last five years with him have been an awesome, wild ride.

I've sure gotten used to having him be there for all of Kael and Kylee's sporting and school events. I'm always happy to have him ride along with me while doing errands.  He's typically all but silent in the car and I often wonder what's going on in his mind. "Hey Mom," he finally says out of the blue, "do you think that dragons can swim? And can ducks breathe underwater? Also, I wish that colors could come to life." I love hearing about what's going on inside his head!

He and I have spent a lot of hours at the library looking for Star Wars and Super Hero books!

Infamously, my most fearless child- he carries the most scars, has the most bumps and bruises, and often gets mistaken for much older than he is.  From jumping off the high dive just weeks after he turned four to riding his bike around the 'hood without training wheels for a long time now- Kase always keeps me on my toes (read: worried sick).

This one is always, ALWAYS up for something physical or anything involving sports.  We have ridden miles upon miles together on our bikes.  We have played tag at every park in Ankeny, and he is now too fast for me to catch. I have pitched all the baseballs, thrown all the footballs, played all the frisbee and soccer and basketball and golf and tennis and anything else you can imagine and I love every second of it.  Kase loves to get outside and loves to be active.

He's the most comfortable with no shirt on (thank goodness summer is right around the corner) and a girl at school recently told him, "I'm in love with you." Kase later told me, "she wants me to be in love with her too but I told her I don't wanna do that." 

Kase love, love, LOVES playing with Legos and often falls asleep with them in his hands. That is, of course, when he hasn't fallen asleep reading his beloved Bible. He loves to build and wants me to take pictures of everything he has created (forts, block towers) so he doesn't forget how he built them.

I have seen so many signs of him growing up lately.  He's interested in school work and reading. He's writing his letters and is always asking if he spelled anything. I love to see him so proud of his work. He's figured out a lot of things lately too. He tells me, "Hey Mom, you know the Easter bunny is just someone dressed up, right?" He slow dances with me in the kitchen not because he really wants to but because he can tell it makes me happy. 

Kase wants to be a big kid- and he can often hang with Kael and his friends.  But selfishly, I sometimes love when I see signs of Kase still being little.  At night he often asks, "Can you lay with me, Mama? I'm just a tiny bit scared of the dark." I'm painfully aware that my last preschool Mother's Day Tea is right around the corner and while I'm a little sad that my littlest buddy is growing up so quickly, I can't wait to see what's in store for him over the next few years. 

Happy birthday to my energetic, Nerf gun-loving, athletic, spirited Kaser! We love you so much and can't wait to spend the day celebrating you! 


Weekend Wrap-Up

Another fun and busy April weekend in the books! I knew it was off to a great start when Kael brought home TWO awards from the sixth grade award ceremony! So proud of him and all his hard work this year.

Before that, during the day on Friday, I had preschool conferences all day so Kase hung out with my mom.  I just love this photo reel from her day with him.  It's just so....Kase. 

Friday afternoon Keith and Cindy came to stay with the kids.  They showed up with some new fun shoes as a birthday gift to me and also some fun gifts for the kids.  They're the best! Kent and I went out to celebrate my birthday.  We had a fun time looking around at a few furniture stores (contemplating some new front room and family room furniture), then had a nice dinner together.  It was a great night!

Saturday morning Kael had a solo festival.  Again, I was just so proud of him.  He played great and looked so happy while he was doing it.  

After that, Kylee and I went to get pedicures with friends. Our toes are officially ready for summer! 

Meanwhile, Kent and Kase ran some errands, then went to a preschool friend's birthday party at Chuck E. Cheese. 

Also, Kael went to hang out with my mom and dad.  He baked cupcakes with my mom and helped my dad do some work in his garage before having lunch with them. He had so much fun.

Then we stopped by my nephew's soccer game.  I just love watching four year old soccer.  And he was so happy to see us there to cheer him on; it was just adorable.

Afterwards, Kylee went to Brooklyn's birthday party! She had a blast.

Later that night we all went out on the boat with my parents.

We may not have caught any fish- but just look at the colors of the sunset! It was gorgeous out there. 

The kids were a little tired though...

So Captain Kael drove us in and helped us call it an early night.

Sunday after church we went to Collins- we wanted to see Grandma Cindy on her 60th birthday!!! We had a great time visiting with family and look forward to celebrating more with them next weekend.

Team BOA. I love these gals.

After that, Kael had a soccer game, then we went out for ice cream with Keith and Cindy. When we got home, Kylee and I worked on her fairy garden! She has been wanting to do one for quite some time now so we bought some of the pieces yesterday.  She's so happy with how it turned out!

Hope you all had a wonderful weekend too! 


Thankful Thursday

I'm thankful for a sisters night a couple weeks ago.  Love getting to catch up with them!

I'm thankful for coffee out with Tammy a couple weeks ago.  I could have/should have been doing laundry and other errands while Kase was at school, but chatting with her and holding Berkley was much more fun!

I'm thankful my aunt Connie answered Kael's phone call the other day and chatted with him for a good half hour.  It totally made his day.

I'm so thankful that my brother-in-law Kyle and his girlfriend, Julia got engaged! We all adore her and I'm excited to add another wonderful sister to Kent's side of the family. Team BOA for the win!

I'm thankful that Kylee was in the mood to help clean out her closet the other day.  It feels so good to have that organized!

I'm thankful for all the love shown to me on my birthday. Kent and the kids had some lovely presents for me right away in the morning! I'm thankful for Kylee who always excited to help Kent wrap my gifts.

I'm thankful for this guy.  He wanted so very badly for me to be happy on my birthday.  What an awesome surprise to come home and find new front porch furniture! I can't believe he pulled off the surprise AND it's absolutely perfect.  Better than anything I could have picked out!

I'm always thankful for homemade cards from my kids.  Is there anything better?

I'm thankful for birthday dinner out.  Everyone found something the liked and I didn't have to do dishes.  I'd call that a win! The birthday desserts we got were an awesome bonus, too.

I'm thankful that our fort-building days aren't over.  I'm going to miss him next year.

I'm thankful for sweet cousin moments.


Weekend Wrap-Up

Ready for a photo-filled post of all the fun we've had over the last few days? Here goes!

This little buddy and I are having so much fun together.  Our preschool days are winding down, the weather is getting warmer and we are loving it! 

He helped me get the eggs ready to dye. 

Kylee got back her spring school pictures- so grown up, right?

Tam and her kids came over to visit one day after school last week.  Kael just loves to hold Berkley.  I love it that Tam lives so close and can stop by often! 

Kase loves sweet Berkley too.

We did our Easter eggs last week on a rainy night.  It was so much fun- I love that the kids still enjoy this tradition AND with each passing year it seems to get less and less messy!

Proud of their eggs and ready for the cracking contest!

This goofball has fun hanging out with my mom when I'm at staff meetings. 

And falls asleep reading his bible almost every night.

Wednesday Kase and I took a trip to the mall to finish up some last minute birthday shopping for Kael.  We also stopped by to see the Easter Bunny! I think Kase looks so big in this picture. 

But he certainly wasn't too big for a train ride! 

Stopped by for a little ice cream on our way home. I'm going to miss having a little buddy tag along with me on errands this fall once he starts kindergarten.

Kylee has been clocking a LOT of neighborhood friend time with all this beautiful weather.

Thursday morning Kael woke up to his room filled with balloons and came downstairs with a big smile on his face.  We had donuts for breakfast, he opened a couple gifts, then it was off to school. 

Kylee worked hard on a card for him and he was so sweet, taking time to really appreciate the detail she put into the pictures she drew for him!

Kael had a busy day with library bingo and soccer practice so I didn't see him much until later in the evening, but he was home for just a few minutes and saw the cake I had made for him.  He was so surprised! Also so happy and very appreciative. 

On the way to take Kael to practice, Kylee and Kase spotted this purple field and wanted to stop and pick a few flowers.

When Kael got home that night we had the dinner he requested (ribs) and just enjoyed celebrating him! He really was just so sweet all day long. Twelve year old Kael is pretty awesome.

My parents stopped by to have cake with us.

You'll notice Kael's new fidget spinner in this picture- it was a total hit; one of his favorite gifts for sure! All credit goes to Kent on that gift idea.  I guess a lot of this kids bring them to youth group and Kent noticed so we got one for Kael and he was thrilled.

Friday the kids didn't have school.  We went to see Boss Baby, which the kids were so excited about.

After the movie we went to pick out cupcakes for later that evening.  The kids are all really into watching Cupcake Wars, and this cupcake bakery has been on that show before, so the kids just loved going here.

They picked out some pretty awesome cupcakes!

Later that night, Keith, Cindy, Kevin, Kaity, King, and Bill and Doe all came to visit and celebrate Kael's birthday.  We ate at El Azteca, then back here for cupcakes.  It was a great night.

Kase loves his aunt Kaity! "I'm just gonna sit here on your lap," he said.

Then Kael wanted to show everyone how he can pick me up. Ha!

Cindy had some fun Easter gifts and a fun egg hunt for the kids.

Kase loved his new Lego set!

Saturday morning these two were up early and went for a long walk. 

Then Grandpa stopped by for a bit.

We spent the day getting things done and playing outside! It was a beautiful day and we got a lot done around the house.

Sunday morning Kylee had Easter gifts for all of us.  Leave it to Kylee.  She's just so thoughtful and loves to give. Everyone was excited about their surprises from her.

Then the kids were ready to hunt eggs! 

After seeing all their treats from the Easter bunny, we got ready for early church.

After church we headed to my parents' house. 

Again, it was just a beautiful day, so we spent a lot of time outside!

Aaaand a lot of time holding Berkley.

We also got to celebrate the April birthdays! The kids were so excited about every one of their gifts.

This picture cracks me up.

Then it was time for the egg hunt! It was so much fun watching the kids all run around the yard! 

Then time to open all the eggs!

Then back outside for a second round of hunting for Easter treats!

All seven grandkids in age order.  Love these guys so much!

Look at this cute little bunny folded from a dollar! Kylee thought this was so great.

Uncle Kent got in some Berkley time too!

Then, one of our very favorite Easter traditions- the egg cracking contest!

In the end, Tammy was crowned winner this year! The kids had fun cracking the extra eggs and throwing them off the deck.

The girls enjoyed a picnic supper outside!

And a game of kickball!

And some tree climbing.

Mostly I just love watching the cousins all get to be together.

Lastly, our April birthday celebration wasn't complete without our individual cakes! Such a fun and special tradition. 

My heart is full- what a happy weekend.  The weather was great, we got to spend lots of time with family and the kids were so thankful for all the gifts and treats.