Sunday, April 15, 2012

First Karate Belt Promotion!

Today was a very proud day for me and Joe! Leo earned his first belt promotion in Karate; he graduated from his white belt to his Tiger belt. The ceremony consisted of a testing portion for all the kids from his studio which ranked from white belt to 3rd degree black belt. Leo was inspired by seeing the advanced students test (sparring, using nunchucks etc.). He was also able to witness 2 students earn their black belts, which made both Joe and I a little teary eyed. What an accomplishment.

There were some very memorable moments, including when Somerset started chanting the student's call backs, "yes sir!" and "A.T.A.! (American Taekwando Association)" The whole auditorium giggled. Also, Leo left the testing area at one point to hug Joe in the audience. This is a big no no, but Leo is barely four and it was so sweet.

Grandma (my mom), attended as well. Unfortunately, we were all on Somerset duty and she was away for good portions of the ceremony. We were still thrilled to have her there.

I just can't wait for the day that Leo earns his black belt. It will probably come sooner than we think!

Just a Pretty Photo

I was able to get this shot of Somerset just as we were waking Leo up from his afternoon nap. Somerset always gets up earlier from her naps than Leo, so we sometimes have to wake him up. Leo's naps have been crazy long! On this day, it was sunny outside and the light was hitting her so beautifully. I ran to get the camera and she greeted me with a sweet smile. She is always so happy to see Leo, so it's no wonder she looks so precious.

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Spring Fever!

Surprised face!

Leo LOVES Games! He roped Uncle Aaron and Grandma Laurel into many rounds of Chutes and Ladders and Candyland.

Somerset's new dress
Our Front Yard daffodils

Spring is finally here! We enjoyed beautiful weather over Easter weekend, which included lots of family fun. We started Easter weekend with a Easter egg hunt at the church. The fun continued on Easter day with a family dinner at my parents, which included a trip to the park and an Easter egg hunt. Leo is now a pro at the hunts, but it was so fun to watch Somerset clumsily looking for eggs. She did get the concept, but she was a tad bit slow at collecting. One of my favorite parts of Easter was being able to dress up my sweet Somerset like the doll she is. I bought her a new spring dress recently, which she wore to the church hunt, but we saved her very special dress, that was given to her by Great Grandma Naomi for Easter day. She looked gorgeous.

We have had a lot of visitors recently. Grandma Laurel stayed with us for 2 weeks in March and we had a very nice visit. She is a pro at playing with Leo and the two of them are best buddies when she is around. It's too bad that she lives so far away.

Uncle Aron also stayed with us for the weekend after his Spring Break. The kiddos are so lucky to have such a fun and youthful uncle!

Life with the kiddos has been good. Leo is so well behaved and has been a piece of cake. Our biggest struggle with him is trying to get him to eat. We fight tooth over nail over him taking bites of food. I sure hope he develops a healthy appetite later in life. As his mommy, I feel so responsible for making sure he gets the nutrition he needs to grow healthy and strong. He probably has 2% body fat, so he doesn't have a lot of reserve.

Leo continues to LOVE Phineas and Ferb. It is by far his favorite show and since it is well written and quite clever, Joe and I don't mind him watching.

Somerset has started to become super animated. She has a number of faces that she routinely makes. One of them is her scrunchy face and another is her surprised face. She's my little actress. She continues to develop language. She now says thank you and probably says around 50 words with a few 2 word combos. She also understands us remarkably well, which makes things easier. This age is difficult though because she is very dangerous. She climbs like crazy and is fascinated by the cutlery drawer and the oven....yikes!!!

Summy has been waking up so early. 5:30 a.m is fairly common for her, which is super difficult for me. I am not a morning person at all and am like a zombie for the first hour. Leo wakes up around 6:30 am.

Joe continues with beer brewing and I have started making handmade soap. I would love to turn this into a small business one day, but I have to get good first. I am super excited about my new hobby though!!! I should start posting photos on here soon.

Monday, April 2, 2012

My Amazing 4 Year Old

It all started here.

Million dollar smile

Protective big brother
Whoopie cushion fun. Always ready to laugh.

Oh Leo, How I love your birthdays. It gives me an opportunity to reflect on what an amazing person you are. Now that you are 4, you are more amazing than ever.

You have changed so much this year. You joined Karate, you started preschool, you learned so much! You have now grown into a mature, caring, and loving member of the family. Your tantrums are few and far between and you are so well behaved. How did this happen?

It is so easy for you to make friends. You are adored by all: younger kids, big kids, adults. You are charismatic and there is no denying that. You are social and fun and enjoy playing all the time. I have never met someone with so much energy and zest for life. You wake up happy and joyful and always take time to hug me and your sister.

Things you love:

- Legos (you fashion them into spaceships and blasters)
- Candy and anything sweet
- Phineas and Ferb. You have asked many times to be called Phineas
- The Phineas and Ferb soundtrack. We have listened to this CD too many times to count.
- Karate. You are about to earn your orange belt.
- Mommy's arms. You love to hold my arms, especially when we take naps together.
- Somerset. You are so very sweet to her.
- Daddy. Being silly with Daddy is one of your favorite things. You are all boy when you are around Daddy.
- Angry Birds. You play Angry Birds on Daddy's phone and are so advanced for your age.
- Games. You love Candyland and Chutes and Ladders and have played these games hundreds of times. You still don't like losing, but we are working on that. ;-)

I am so happy to have you in my life. I feel privileged and honored to be your mom. How did I get so lucky? What am amazing person God has given me and Daddy to raise. I believe that you can do anything you want in life! You have been given infectious energy that draws people to you, an unbelievable intellect, a great sense of humor and joy for life, a strong resilience against getting your feelings hurt, combined with a sensitivity towards others and of course a beautiful face. I love every once of your 32 pound being!!!

I love you Leo. The last 4 years have been the best of my life.