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Monday, September 26, 2016

a little bit of Abe

A few weeks ago Abe started back to Mother's Day Out just one day a week. I thought it would be good for him. And it would give the big boys and I at least one uninterrupted day of school time. Last year we had started our homeschool co-op so I pulled him from MDO. This year he is doing both and he sort of acts like it is torture to be away from me all of that time. :) We attend only morning classes at our co-op, by our own choice. So with MDO, co-op, and time at church he is away from me about 10 hours a week. I remind myself of that when he clings to me at a drop off and I start to feel like maybe it's too much for him. :)
 He was all smiles for his first day, until it was actual time for drop off.
 Then last week he knew a real live fire truck was coming to school, so he was extremely excited and he had no reservations whatsoever at drop off. He was ready to get on that truck!
 But this boy is a solid momma's boy and with me is, by far, his most favorite place to be.
And here is a picture from last month. He loves to sit and paint with water colors. He will sit and do this for a full hour. Which is a long time for a 3 year old boy, in case you are unfamiliar with this gender/age combo. :)
 And then on the day I was taking the brick wall school pictures of the big boys, Abe really thought he needed his own photo shoot. So I snagged these. :)
In just over 2 months we will be celebrating this boy's 4th birthday. I am not sure at all how that is even possible, but that is what my calendar keeps telling me. I'm hopeful that I'm half crazy and I've somehow skipped a year in my head. But I have a strong suspicion that his 4th birthday really is right around the corner. Which means there really are no more babies that live in my house. Hard truth to swallow for this momma. 

Thursday, September 15, 2016

Pax in 2nd grade

A look back on the past three years. He keeps getting cuter. :)

Holden in 3rd grade

And just for grins, here is a little trip down memory lane. Oh my, he just keeps growing up!

Friday, September 9, 2016

Paxton's celebration!

Paxton's 7th birthday fell on a Friday this year. I planned ahead to take the day off from our school work. Normally we don't even start our school year until after his birthday, but this year we got a jump start. We began this birthday in our usual way. Breakfast of choice, which he had decided on donuts the night before, and opening one gift from his brothers.
 One of the biggest nerf guns we could find.
 He is kind of crazy for both Ninjas and Minecraft these days. So we had a little of both. My boys don't play Minecraft, but they think they know ALL about it. Funny how that works. :)

After we were all dressed and had loved on the birthday boy, Jeremy and I set out in different directions rounding up the troop. Pax had chosen 3 boys from our homeschool co-op and 1 neighbor friend down the street that was out of school that day because he goes to a University model school. Since he had chosen boys that were home and free, we decided to do his celebration at lunch time. He had his heart set on Chuck E. Cheese!
 He got some more great gifts from his buddies: lots of books, legos, the game Battleship and another nerf gun.
 Abe decided during this time that he wanted to go to Chuck E. Cheese for HIS birthday. I heard all about it often on this day. We'll see what he thinks when December rolls around.
 Boys and video games...they love this stuff.
 Waiting patiently for their pizza. They were a pretty sweet and fun bunch. And after singing to Pax, they enjoyed a cupcake.
Later that evening my parents came over for burgers on the grill and Pax got to open the rest of his gifts.
 Lots of fun stuff.
 I would definitely say Paxton's 3 favorite ways to spend his time are: reading books, playing with legos and playing games with anyone and everyone. And he got a little of everything.
Now the scooter was a complete surprise. He has been wanting one, but he didn't think he would actually get one.
 A big wish and one final cupcake wrapped up our celebration.
Another birthday in the books. I can't believe this kid is 7!!

Thursday, September 1, 2016

Paxton Clark is 7.

Pax celebrated his 7th birthday last Friday, August 26th. It was a fun day and celebration that I'll post about soon. But here he is at age 7. Actually this was a few days before his birthday. And I just knew that top left tooth would fall out before his birthday and then I would be determined to get new pictures with his new smile. But lo and behold, nearly 2 weeks later and that tooth is holding on for dear life. :) 
You see this sweet smile? This is how he wakes and how he remains 95% of the time. I consider myself a pretty happy, cup half full individual. So I love that this boy has a happy spirit about him. He is laid back and easy going. He is flexible. He is really funny and understands a lot of humor that I don't always expect him to get. He spends much of his day laughing. And he makes me laugh quite a bit too. He is also a sensitive little boy that likes to ask many questions. In fact, he often starts a conversation with, "Mommy, can I ask you a question?" I've never answered him with "no" to that question. Yet, he asks that question multiple times a day   . :)
Pax tells me he is not an "outdoors kind of guy". His favorite activities are mainly indoor things. He reads more than any child you have ever known. I promise. Im talking 3-4 hours a day of reading book after book after book. It is not unusual for us to find Pax's chapter books wide open, face down ALL OVER THE HOUSE! We have provided him with countless bookmarks but apparently they are never around when he needs them. If he sees one of his books somewhere, his natural instinct is to pick it up and start reading it. Even if he's already read it 5 times before. I'm not a repeat reader very often. Once I've read a book, I'm done with it. Fortunately he repeats them all the time. Otherwise we couldn't afford his hobby or make it to the library fast enough. And he doesn't part with his books. I've tried to encourage him to clean out his bookshelves and give some books away. But he will not part with any of them. Something else he loves to do is build. He loves legos and building with any kinds of blocks that he can find. Another favorite activity that comes to mind is games. He loves to play games! Uno, Skip-bo, Sorry, Trouble, Battleship (this was a new gift Friday from a friend and I think we've played it every day since), Guess Who. He just loves playing games with people. He is a smart boy and he learns quickly. He does play outside. We make it happen. He enjoys swimming, riding bikes, riding his new scooter, going to the park and playing soccer and other sports. But he loves to be home, in his house doing his favorite indoor activities the most.
This summer Pax began saying he wanted to try and play the piano. He had watched his cousins play and became interested. So he started piano lessons in June. He has done very well. His teacher always tells me that he has great rhythm. And a few weeks ago he returned to the van proudly saying, "She told me to tell you that I can now read music!" He doesn't love it when I tell him that it's time to practice, but he obeys and does his practicing. Paxton is often singing around the house. He loves Toby Mac and Chris Tomlin. I'm often streaming music from my phone and he is always singing along. And he sings big! Big voice, big arms in worship, big facial features. :) He also has some pretty sweet dance moves that we see daily in our house. This boy is full of life! In the fall Pax will have his first try at playing flag football. He enjoys trying new things. Academics come pretty easily for him and his favorite subjects right now are Literature and History.
Paxton is the amazing middle brother in our family. I always tell him that his role is so special because he is the only one that is both a BIG brother and a LITTLE brother. And he handles both roles like a champ. He was our baby for nearly 4 years until we brought home Abe. But goodness, he is the sweetest big brother to Abe. Sure, Abe annoys him when he destroys a lego creation that he has built. But most of the time he plays with him so well and they have such a good time together. Just in this past year those two have grown so close to one another. In fact, just tonight Abe asked me if Pax could rock him and sing You Are My Sunshine before we put Abe to bed. So Paxton did. Abe is gaining on him in size and he was a lap-full for Pax. But he rocked him, sang to him and then we tucked him in to bed together. Abe is a lucky boy to have this one by his side. Who am I kidding! We are a lucky family to have this one.
Paxton Clark brings so much sunshine, joy and laughter to our home. I will never stop thanking God for making him ours.

Monday, August 15, 2016

Summer Fun 2016

The summer break is winding to an end and it really has gone by quickly this year. We sometimes wait until close to Labor Day to start school, but this year we will be starting at the same time as our area public schools next week. Since in the past it has taken us about 1-2 weeks to make the painful transition of quite a bit of freedom to quite a bit of structure, I figured we would get a head start on the painful part. Hopefully by Labor Day everyone will have happy hearts and great attitudes. :) But it has been an eventful and fun summer for us with a few road trips, lots of down time and time with friends. During the school year, we are home a lot. So this summer I made it a point to be out and about several times a week. We had the freedom to do so and that is exactly what I did.
We started out with a list of things we definitely wanted to do this summer. I am happy to say that almost everything on this list is now checked off.
 The boys started off summer with a week in VBS at the church where they attended Mother's Day Out during their preschool years. To say they were pumped about this week is an understatement. They had a blast!
 boy dress up never gets old to these guys
 We've hit up the water park about once a week. Sometimes twice.
And on a few lucky days we got to bring daddy along.
We tried to see how many clowns we could squeeze into a tiny car.
 Education continued on, but just minimally. I started working on the alphabet with Abe.
 The boys pressed on through math. Almost every week day this summer they did a little math work.
 We went to the library weekly and they all read their little hearts out!
 Holden found a series of books he loves...the I survived series. Check it out if you have one that is just getting into chapter books. It is fictional books about true events in history. And Holden has now read most of them and loves them and tells me all about each one.
And Pax read so much (through the library summer reading club) that he got his name in a book that will be in our public library! So proud of this book worm!
 This same sweet boy started weekly piano lessons this summer and is doing well.
 And he spent many hours building creations at his lego table.
We cheered on our little track star at many hot track meets.
 We celebrated father's day with my dad.
And of course with this special daddy.
 Before the triple digits hit, we actually spent time playing outside in ways that didn't have to include water.
 We hosted a boy cousin sleepover and took the cousins to the waterpark.
 We played lots of games.
 We enjoyed a few snow cones.
 We painted.
 We built with blocks.
And this little baker helped me in the kitchen many times.
 We celebrated the 4th of July!
 twice, actually.
 We had a tonka truck car wash with friends.
 The big boys liked it as much as the little ones.
 Another cousin sleepover and fun times with the Colorado cousins.
 We made lots of messes.
 All 3 boys attended a morning sports camp for 4 days in July. By the 4th day Abe was a mess crying at the thought of leaving me for another day. So instead he and I had a 3 hour date that morning. 
 We went roller skating with friends.
This is the only other picture I have that is not completely blurry. 4 out of 5 in the family loved it. The 3 year old wasn't ready for wheels.
 We took a quick trip to Oklahoma to see friends.
And we got a wild hair. He's been asking to do this for months.
 And the one thing that Pax has been asking to do ALL SUMMER LONG. Yesterday he and I sat in the hot sun so he could have his lemonade stand. I have no idea where he got the idea, but my best guess is that he read about it in a book. :) He was a trooper and such a cute, little entrepreneur. He made $30 in two hours and at least half of that was in "keep the change". And one person's change was $7.75!! Honestly, he had no plans for his profits. He has put the money is savings jar. I say that he's a saver like his daddy. I think he wanted the experience more than he cared about the money.
This summer has really been a special one. I think it is the fun ages and how growing up a little definitely changes things but it sure adds some additional possibilities and fun to this season for our family. I wouldn't mind one more month of this summer fun, but all good things must come to an end. So long, summer!