Monday, July 30, 2007

Indy Beach and Family Days

We have had so much going on around here lately, it is almost ridiculous. I have been trying to post about a week now (and trying to call you Aimee!!--I swear I will!) Posting just keeps getting put off for more important things! (That sounds SOOOOO familiar....have I actually said that exact thing before? It wouldn't surprise me.) But today, I am taking the time to do this!

We took a vacation day and went to Indiana Beach a couple of weeks ago (the day after Colin's wedding). We had a wonderful time. Here are a few shots of our adventure! Ethan was an absolute GEM all day, sitting for the most part, very contentedly, in his section of the stroller. He is such a great baby! Colin rode his very first ever "big boy ride" with Mommy and Daddy--you know the one that just basically goes around and around so fast you think you are going to fall out the side of the ride, then it slows down, stops, and then goes backwards just as fast? That was the one he rode! He did great and said he loved it! Here is a self-picture of that one. Colin and Cameron loved riding the smaller rides together too--Cameron did so much better than Colin did when he was this age! We knew that was because he had his big brother by his side the whole time, and when you are riding with someone it makes it so much more fun! Here is a shot of Colin (riding with Daddy) when he was Cameron's age! And a couple below of Cameron and Colin together this year. We all had a ton of fun!

The boys in the cars.....

On the motor

In the whales.....

In the cars again....

On the kiddie whip ride......

My mom went with us and was such a HUGE help. She always is! You know, I don't really say too much on this blog about my mother, but she is such a huge part of the boys' and our family's lives. She comes to our house EVERY Friday night (without fail!) and watches the boys, so that Shane and I can have a date night together. It is such a special time for Shane and I, and for the boys also....they really look forward to it! (Not as much as Shane and I do, though! :-) Hee hee.) I wanted to post a couple of shots of the boys with grandma--or "baba" if you are Cameron. We are so glad that she was able to be a part of our vacation day! Thanks Mom, for everything you do for us--We love you!

We had a great time this past Saturday doing some family things....we got Ethan's six month pictures taken (finally!!), went to see the "duckies" at Sunset Park, and then went to a playground so the boys could play for a while. The park is right near a driving range, so Shane took them hunting for stray golf balls (they found seven!) while I took some outside pictures of my sweet little Ethan. Here are two of my favorites, and the rest of his (plus more of all the boys) are on the slide show. Also, a great shot of all three boys together at Sunset Park. We had a great day together, and every day that passes I am more and more grateful for the children and hubby that God has given me. I am so blessed!

Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Colin's wedding

Colin has been so excitedly looking forward to "his wedding" for weeks now. My pastor's daughter asked him to be the ring bearer in her wedding, which was last Saturday, the 14th. Colin did a fantastic job, and as usual, I couldn't take enough pictures! There are some here from the rehearsal, but most are from the actual wedding and reception. Colin did an absolutely fabulous job--we practiced quite a bit before hand, and talked all about what he would need to do. I thought there may just be a chance that the doors would open and he would head for the hills crying, too scared to actually walk the aisle after he saw all the people staring at him....but he was a total pro. He was just so excited about "his wedding" finally being here, and being able to wear his "seedo" (tuxedo in plain english) and carry his pillow down to the front of the church. He did exactly what he was supposed to do--no tears in sight, only big smiles! I on the other hand was a complete basket case, bursting into tears and crying like a baby the entire time he was walking down. (See my earlier post about watching your 'baby' becoming not such a 'baby' anymore--it was all those same feelings all over again!) The wedding itself was wonderful, and Shane and I had a good time at the reception--special thanks to Haley for holding down the fort with all three boys while we went! It was a really neat experience, and I wanted to share as much of it as I could. Hope you enjoy!

For some reason, the video clip of Colin walking down the aisle is not working. Please click on the following link to watch it!

Monday, July 16, 2007

Family pictures

Got a few new family pics! We recently found a couple of really great garage sale items: a family sized blow up pool and a slip and slide! The boys (Daddy included) are having a wonderful time with their new treasures!

Ethan is 5 1/2 months old now, and is doing more and more everyday. He is almost sitting up, and holds himself up really well on his tummy--almost pushing up to his arms and legs! It won't be long now and I will REALLY have 3 to chase around the house!

My friend Jen also had a great garage sale of those blow up things that you find at the fairs and amusement parks! She brought it over today and the boys LOVED it! Between that and the pool, it was hard to get them inside the house!

Friday, July 13, 2007

Skating Party

Colin and Cameron are both members of a "young saver's club" at a credit union, and this year, the credit union invited all of their members out to a skating party. Now, normally, I would have tossed the invitation, but this year I thought to myself that the boys are probably old enough now to attempt something like this. Then I thought--this would be a great family activity for all of us! So last Saturday, we loaded up and took all three of them out to the skating rink. What an adventure, but in a really good way! The thing about having THREE children is that now, they outnumber it is hard because at all times, either Shane or I have to be with two of them at one time. Sounds easier than it really is, especially when you have two children ages 3 and under who have never worn a pair of skates in their lives! :-) Ethan was asleep in his carrier when we got there and slept for probably the first 30 minutes, so that made things somewhat easier to start off. Shane and I took turns with the boys, and within 5 minutes, Colin had a good enough hang of things that we didn't have to hold his hand constantly. Cameron, on the other hand, was a completely different story. As you can see from the video, Shane basically had to lean over Cameron, holding his hands and most of his weight, for the duration of the time that Cameron was on the skating floor. Needless to say, that didn't last too case you hadn't noticed, Cameron is decently beefy and isn't exactly the lightest child. :-) Plus, he wasn't all too fond of the skating anyway, unfortunately for us the party had fallen very close to his upcoming nap time, and he was pretty tired within just a few minutes of our being there. So, after a little while, we ate some lunch. It was so nice, because the credit union provided lunch, drinks, and an ice cream cone for each child, plus a little goody bag! And, there were random drawings for prizes during the party, and Colin won one of them! He was very excited about that. Ethan was awake by lunch time as well, and in a great mood! Hence the reason for the huge smile in this picture (is is just me or does Ethan look EXACTLY like Colin when he was a baby in this picture? It is crazy!) So, since Cameron was fading, and Ethan was awake, and Shane doesn't exactly love to roller skate anyway, I took Colin out on the floor again for a little while. Then, after a few minutes of skating, they called for everyone to line up that wanted to be in the skating races. Now, this is nostalgic for me, since I used to go out to the skating rink all the time when I was little and ALWAYS did the races, and I was hoping Colin would want to participate. He did, and I was so proud of him. He stood up there to race and was all by himself for a little while....I thought he was just going to be racing solo, but the skating guard went and got the son of the lady who actually runs the skating rink to race against him! Needless to say, the race was slightly unevenly matched, and Colin fell a couple of times during his treck to the finish line, but I was so proud of him, he raced all the way to the end and won himself a bag of cotton candy! It was weird for me....I have heard people talk about that "feeling" you get when you watch your child do something competitive. How proud you are of them, how you so badly want them to do well, not get hurt, and love what they are doing all at the same time....I felt that for the first time in my life watching Colin do this. I was cheering for him and nearly crying all at the same time as I watched him trying so hard to skate. Even now, as I sit here typing this, my eyes feel a little teary! :-) Make fun all you want, but you will get there someday with your own baby if you haven't already, and then you will know exactly what I am talking about! But he did finish, and he did do well, and he did love it, so I was extremely happy for him and proud of him and what he had just done! We decided soon after that we should load up and head home (a process in itself) and on the way out the door, we stopped at skee ball for just a few quick games. That was interesting to watch Colin try to get the ball in the hole! He did pretty well (with Daddy's help). It was a lot of work for both Shane and me, but what a great time we all had. We rewarded ourselves with a mozzarella burgers from Gross' Burgers for lunch (and some garlic fries too!) and it was a great ending to our family adventure for that day!

Thursday, July 5, 2007

America's Birthday

We had a really great fourth! The first pic was actually taken Sunday at church--the boys looked so cute in their red/blue/white shirts!

Yesterday, Shane was off work (that was so great!) and we headed over to Aunt Karen's in the morning and swam for quite awhile. Cameron absolutely has no fear at all of the water--he jumps off the edge and into the pool for Shane to catch him....then back up on the edge and in again. This continued yesterday until Daddy was pooped! It was so cute. Colin is a big fan of playing on the stairs of the pool (water getting in his mouth is not his favorite) so Shane invented a game called fill up Aunt Karen's watering can and pour it over Colin and Cameron's heads. Pretty fun game apparently, because the boys loved it! Ethan sat happily for quite awhile in his favorite toy right now, his excersaucer. I even got a chance to swim! We headed back home after about 2 hours and had some lunch, then EVERYONE napped. Swimming tires out little boys (and mommies!) pretty well! We got up, worked around the house for a bit, then went into Danville for some fireworks. We normally like to go to Champaign and watch the University of Illinois' show (it is amazing!) but since there was a threat of rain AND Ethan and Cameron are both still pretty little, we decided to stay in town. We treated the boys to ice cream and then headed to the American Legion. On the way, I was explaining to Colin about what the fourth of July stood for, and how it was "America's Birthday." Colin was quiet for a minute, thinking about what I had just told him, and all of a sudden we heard Cameron singing his rendition of "Happy Birthday to you!" It sounds much more like "Hap bbbbbffff choo choo", but the tune was right, and we sure knew what he was singing! It was sooooo cute.

The fireworks were just about perfect for the boys.....they were relatively intermittent, so they had time to follow each one, and there weren't too many really loud ones. Cameron really didn't know what to think at first (these were his first fireworks ever) but after a little lip-quivering, and saying, "loud, loud" a few times, he began to get in the spirit of things and really enjoy himself. Colin LOVED them, and even Ethan sat and watched--no kidding, he really followed them with his eyes and seemed to like it! No tears or anything! I was somewhat surprised at that, but certainly thankful. It was another wonderful family day--I am so thankful for my country and my family!

Tuesday, July 3, 2007

Time marches on!

Well, Ethan is already FIVE months old! I can hardly believe it, Shane and I say almost every day how fast time flies. Especially when you have three boys....whew, they keep us sooooo busy. But what a blessing they are, that is for sure! We got a GREAT report today at the doctor, it was awesome to hear our doc say that Ethan is doing so much better. (In case you weren't aware, he has had a rough last 4-5 weeks or so, with terrible wheezing and coughing spells again.) He had to take some pretty disgusting medicine, and have lots of breathing treatments, but thankfully everything is working and he seems to be on the upswing! Here is some video that I took last night of Ethan having a grand old time in his crib! Man, those dimples, that smile, those giggles...they get me every time!

Also, for all you mommies that read my blog, you have to check out This is my friend Heather's blog, and you can get to it just by clicking on that link. There was an awesome clip of a VERY creative mom singing about the joys that come along with motherhood, and Heather managed to get it onto her blog. It is in the section titled, "For all you mommies out there!" and it should be near the very top. The video is tremendously funny (very worthy of your time to watch!) and I know you will be able to relate--whether you have one child or seven!! Enjoy!

Monday, July 2, 2007

The Merritts are the cutest

I never did post an entry after my week long trip to Chicago....still working on that....:-) but I wanted to post a few of the pictures that I took while I was up there!


Reese (Jay and Karie's daughter)


Luke (Roger and Aimee's son)


Talk about the cutest five (soon to be six, of course--thanks to Rog and Aimee!) children who just happen to be a part of the same gene pool!