Oh what fun we've had this fall and winter! After Thanksgiving, the days just flew by. We started by celebrating Caedmon's birthday a little early, since we're already well into Christmas celebrations by the time his actual birthday rolls around. We had a yummy birthday cookie and gifts at home and he relished getting to celebrate early and extending his birthday a couple of weeks because of that! We can't believe our biggest boy is already so big; what joy he has brought us these past 7 years!
The boys also had a couple of opportunities to take part in Christmas programs and nativities. Following a concert put on by the children at Isaac's school, our whole family was able to participate in a live nativity. We joined in as angels and shepherds.
Caedmon has had his eye on a particular set of Legos since the summer, and his dream finally came true at Christmas. He has spent a lot of hours happily constructing and creating stories with his arctic outpost set.
Another plan that we've been mulling over for several years now finally took shape, and the boys were able to spend a couple of days helping construct a fort in our backyard!
Caedmon felt strongly that the fort needed a trap door entrance, so he helped figure out what we needed to make that happen.
Isaac was pretty handy with his hammer - once an adult got a nail started, he was eager to finish pounding it in to the floor of the fort.
Ta-da! I'm not sure what will be more fun for the boys - constructing the fort or playing in it - but we were thankful for Papa's advice and manpower and were delighted with the finished product. It was a great experience for the boys to be able to help and I know they were so proud of what they helped accomplish!
We are excited about giving the boys interesting experiences, especially as they are getting old enough to really be able to understand and remember what we do. This year, tickets for Wild Kratts Live went on sale at the perfect time for us to give that as the boys' Christmas gift. They were so very excited, and the show did not disappoint! Although I had difficulty capturing their enthusiasm in the following picture (there were people standing in the aisle of the performance hall and I was struggling to get the shot I wanted of the stage behind them) they had a great time.
The best part of the evening came after the show ended, as I was able to take the older boys to a Meet-and-Greet with the real Kratt brothers. We had tried to prepare them and encourage them to think of any questions for the brothers or things they'd like to tell them but I think we were all a little bashful when it came to meeting their real-life heros. Martin and Chris were both very kind, both pronounced Caedmon's name correctly, and seemed very sincere and genuine. Caedmon asked Martin, who is his favorite Kratt, how he travels all around the world to see all those animals.
I love Isaac's expression when he was talking to Chris, who is his favorite. I think in this picture they were telling him what their favorite episode of the show was, but Isaac also asked him how many animals he's met in real life. Thousands!
The boys each got a personalized, autographed photo of the brothers, which they clutched like treasure as we left. They were so appreciative for the experience, which made our parent hearts proud. It was a joy to get to share this experience with them, and as a mom, I am thankful that although we don't have the television on much, when we do, there's an option for these guys that has taught them a ton of fascinating things about nature, and encourages their adventurous, explorative, brave little hearts.
A few little things I've jotted down lately that the boys have said or done:
As we counted down the days to the Wild Kratts Live show, Isaac told me that he was thankful for all the hard work the Kratt brothers do to make such a great show. He wanted to take him a gift and went to the pantry to show me what he thought would be a good option: a package of Ritz crackers. We discussed it and compromised on a picture that he drew, which he proudly presented to Martin when they met him.
Caedmon was watching a football game with Daniel the other day and has really been participating and commenting on the action. When the teams flipped the coin, his only question was, "If they guess it right, does that team get to keep the coin?"
Sometimes at bedtime, I will tuck Luke in and give him a kiss, then he will say, "I want to give you a kwiss (quiss?) too!" Early one morning before he got up, I heard him have a few sneezes and sniffles. Later that morning he told me, "I had a bless-you in my bed!"