3 day trip to New York City... Dinner at Carmine's, Wicked on Broadway, Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island, Carrie Bradshaw's apartment, Today Show, Magnolia Bakery, and VU Basketball just to name the highlights.
And here's some of my favorite pictures of the boys most of which were taken with my iPhone. In attempt to make the graininess of the photos work, I edited them in Picnik using the 1960's effect.
I think I like the vintage look.
That must have been one really good nap to wake up with hair looking like that.
I believe this is his first smiling photo with Santa.
Posing for mommy.
Love Grant's snaggletooth smile.
Showing some Vanderbilt spirit and brotherly loves.
This year Halloween fell on a Monday. Grant just couldn't understand why he had to go to school on a holiday. I have never considered it, but it is a very good question.
My goal was to have everything ready by 5:00pm so that we could get some good outside shots of the kids while it was still daylight. Success! I had chili on the stove by 4:00pm and the kids in costume by 4:30. Grant's buddies came over for some shots too.
Well, Drew didn't want to put on his green pig costume to take his picture with the boys. We thought maybe he was hungry and grumpy. Or, maybe he was just worried all of those angry birds would get him.
After dinner, he was ready for trick-or-treating and a picture with Grant.
Nobody was sick this year. This hasn't happened since Drew was born. For Drew's first Halloween he had an ear infection. And last year, Grant had strep throat.
This was also the first year that they had coordinating costumes. I had high hopes in dressing Drew up as a cute fluffy lion. But, after hearing that mommy was going to make Grant an Angry Bird costume, Drew decided that he would be a green Angry Bird pig. I was thrilled with the way that they turned out. In hindsight, I am glad that I coordinated them... it may quite possibly be the first and last time that I have that chance.
They got to enjoy going door to door with their cousins, aunts, uncles, mommy and daddy. Drew made it about a block and said he was all done. He actually walked most of the way. He quickly got tired of trekking up several steep driveways and yards for his treats.
I took him home while Grant and the others continued until their buckets were full.
After trick-or-treating, we enjoyed hanging out in the cul-de-sac with family and neighbors around the fire.
Ok. It has been way too long since posting. I love this blog. It's not so much about who reads it. It more so for me. Time passes so quickly. I find that when I write about an event or record the kids' latest developments, then I remember it much more vividly. So here's what we've been up to over the past month... or so.
On fall break, Danny and I took the boys to Chattanooga for a quick getaway. We drove up on Friday and then spent a few hours at the aquarium. We took Grant when he was nearly the same age as Drew. Needles to say it was sweet to do some of the same things we did 4 years ago with our now complete family.
See the fear in Drew's eyes in this picture. That shark came out of nowhere and headed straight toward us. Drew was scared and Grant was so terrified he started crying.
After calming down, they were able to take a closer look.
I got this same picture of Grant when he was two. And, I love it. Danny wonders how I remember stuff like that. And it's quite simple... because I either blogged it or scrap booked it.
The next day we went to the Tennessee Valley Railroad Museum for a look at the train yard and then a ride on the train.
As you can see in this pic, Grant wasn't into the trains so much this time around. He has his moments here lately. He's either super excited about something or he turns into a whiny two year old if he doesn't get his way. Hmmm, I wonder where he gets that from? As it turns out, just as Drew copies everything Grant does, it also works the other way around.
I know. Too many pictures and not enough words. Hopefully, I'll have a sappy, meaningful post coming very soon!
Drew is three years old. Well, not really but he acts and talks like he is! He now says things like
"That's really, really funny."
"What in the world?"
"What are we having for dinner?"
That was crazy!"
playing in the bean box
I can only gather that he gets his excellent language skills from either: a) copying everything Grant says and does or b) he's just really smart. I'm guessing, it's probably a little bit of both.
Whatever Grant is doing, Drew wants to do it too. Grant plays baseball, then Drew wants to play baseball. Grant wants to play cars, then Drew wants to play cars. Grant wants to play DS, then Drew sits right beside him and watches him play DS. (Recently, this one lasts for only a few minutes and then he ends up bugging Grant and driving him crazy.) Grant sits down to do homework, then Drew sits down to do "homework." Grant wants to use the bathroom, then well, this one he could care less about.
He talks and acts so much like Grant it is eerie... reactions, facial expressions, dance moves, and sayings.
On the other hand, they couldn't be more different. Grant is an observer. He is cautious, responsible, and not so eager to try new things. He's smart like crazy smart. You can tell him or show him something one time, and he just absorbs it. He brings home 2nd grade level reading words from school and knows them with little or no practice.
Drew is more outgoing. He likes to be in the middle of things, and is not afraid to try something new like chicken fried rice or going down the slide by himself. He is very smart as well especially with his vocabulary, but there are subtle differences in their interest that I am picking up on.... Some of Drew's favorite books are ones that Grant had no interest in at this age. And, the same wooden trains that Grant could properly hook together just by looking at them, Drew has trouble figuring them out.
Grant lost his third tooth at school, 1st grade
They are constantly getting on each others nerves... Grant trying to tell Drew what to do and Drew bugging Grant just wanting attention. But really, they are the best of friends.
My favorite part of the day is when Grant comes home on the bus. When Drew is not napping, he comes with me to wait on the porch for Grant. When Drew sees him coming, he darts through the yard to greet him with a hug and a "I missed you, Dant."
Well, summer is officially over. Grant started back to school two weeks ago, and Drew started last week. So, I thought I'd take a little time to recap our summer adventures.
I thought we would stay busy this summer with our summer list. It would serve as a "to-do list" as a way to keep us occupied during the long days at home. We stayed busy most days with at least one outing a day whether it was to the grocery store or to the Adventure Science Center. Ultimately, Grant still spent a little too much time playing Xbox and... we probably made a few too many trips to Target. Yep. I am sad to admit that he started complaining one day about his thumb. As it turns out, he developed a small blister from playing too much!
Here's a picture recap of some of my favorite summer memories. Also, one of my favorite outings this summer (which was not photographed) was our family outing to Nashville Shores.
Adventure Science Center
Swinging at Nana's and O'Dad's
playing Sesame Street Keyboard O'Rama
Chuck E. Cheese
at our neighborhood pool
getting ready for bed
first time making a bead bracelet
backyard pool fun
Ultimately, it was probably the best summer ever. Drew is still as sweet as can be and Grant is at such a great age. He can pretty much occupy himself and is an incredible help in occupying Drew. On the other hand, he is great to hang out with... inquisitive, silly, and... a bit obsessive.
His current obsession is with cars and racing. In fact, most of his free time this summer was spent like this: racing cars.
Cars EVERYWHERE. All over the floor. The coffee table. And, his primary racetrack... the couch! He is so obsessed with cars that his little two year old brother now knows the difference between a Porsche and a Ferrari and a Corvette.
After endless days of racing hotwheels cars, fieldtrips with me and Drew, swimming, and Motorsport on Xbox, the first day of first grade was here before we knew it.
This year's trip to the beach was a little 'off.' Last year we had the oil spill to throw us in a loop. This year, well, we had several things.
First, a few days before we were to hit the road we found out Pops wasn't going to get to go with us. This was sad news for us. And really sad news for Pops.
We had planned to leave on Friday afternoon after swim lessons and drive half-way, but Grant started feeling sick. He had a fever of 102 and a severe headache. On top of that, Drew was saying that his ear hurt. Motrin and a nap did little to no good for Grant. We opted to wait it out and leave on Saturday
The kids woke up the next morning feeling a bit better. Grant was feeling a lot better actually. Drew was "ify" so we pumped him up with some Motrin and hit the road.
The trip wasn't too bad. The boys watched probably no less than 6 hours of DVD's and Drew took about a 1 hour nap. No need to document any more of the treacherous detail (yes, I could keep going). Let just say I took Drew to a walk in clinic on Sunday and was diagnosed with an ear infection. He didn't feel better consistently until Wednesday. And, it was the worst ear infection we have probably ever endured (and we've endured a lot!).
Fast forward to Wednesday.....
Grant showing off his "muscles".
I think I got this exact same picture last year. Same hat, same shirt. It's still cute.
Yeh! A pic of mommy and daddy.
A great dinner night at Lu Lu's.
The kids ask at least once a week when they can go back to the beach.
In the days leading up to Grant's Kindergarten graduation, he started practicing his program songs at home. I started to get a little teary eyed after hearing the last song. Maybe it was the sweetness of the song or maybe it was the sweetness of my little boy. All I know is that he has come so far... from the three year old boy who would make me carry him into preschool, to the 6 year old kindergarten graduate who has friends and a whole other world that doesn't revolve around me.
The morning of his graduation he was excited that we were coming to his program and that he would get to leave early. The morning was also a bit frantic involving more than one wardrobe malfunctions. The pants I had laid out apparently were two sizes too big, his tie was too short and his shoes were a size too big. With five minutes until he had to be at school, I scrambled and found some pants that fit and doubled up socks for his shoes. The tie would just have to do. He wore it to school all day.
He was a star performer at his program (as seen above). And luckily, I didn't shed any tears. It's difficult at times to see him growing so quickly, but when I think about the boy he is becoming, I only feel pride.