Our adventure started out with lots of big ole bumps and dips and I-want-to-go-backs. And has evolved into a place to chronicle it all: the sweet, the contemplative, the painful, and the please-say-I'm-not-alone...Welcome. And please say I'm not alone.
Neighborhood Progressive Easter Egg Hunt Jackson's green egg
Sullivan's (cracked) pink egg
Boys RUNNING down a hill (one of their FAVORITE pastimes). Two seconds later there were major grass stains to tend to!
Cloud-gazing with one of the most cuddly two-year-olds on this planet!
I rest my case... ALWAYS kissing!
We opted this year to have a relaxed, laidback, leisurely immediate-family Easter weekend. No big plans. No big occasions. Just us'ens. I was a touch nervous I'd regret not having a local family adopt us (like last year). Although that scenerio is beautiful too, I am happy to say that we Arthurs know how to have fun all by ourselves! As you can see from above, we decorated easter eggs, planned and enjoyed a neighborhood progressive easter egg hunt (4 back yards and 8 kids!), enjoyed a really nice early worship service, dug into baskets loaded with goodies, and went to the local nature center and hiked/biked amongst the budding trees (stopping occasionally to blow bubbles and look at the clowds!). Finally (DRUM ROLL!), we are preparing, as I type, a delicious all-out Easter meal to be enjoyed tonight.
What I have taken away from this Easter: that life and love will ALWAYS defeat darkness and evil!
When you live in Minnesota, flowers aren't necessarily blooming and eggs are not necessarily hatching around Easter time (maybe by fourth of July!!!). That said, Easter Egg Hunts look like this: We all pile on our tired winter wear (this past Saturday, gloves and hats were even necessary... a pathetic 35 degrees!), bolt out of our cars once the organizer has spread out the eggs in an open space (note: there is no "hunt" about it), pick them up with our stiff fingers as fast as we can, then bolt back to our cars. Ha! The whole thing lasted maybe 10 minutes. :)
Jackson is now a pro! He got to stand on the "doesn't-need-assistance" (aka BIG BOY) side of the field when it began
Sulivan, meanwhile, didn't get the whole thing as so chose to continue with his snack mix in the red bowl. I've got to hand it to him, he never ONCE complained about his cold fingers!
We are in an eye-rubbing phase at the moment. Seems like J is always messing with his eyes... even when he's smiling and posing for a picture. We are seeing an opthomologist next week to look into it. Scott's comment: "The only thing that could possibly make Jackson cuter will be Jackson with glasses." I suppose I bias-ly agree!
OK, you must know that Sullivan smiles A LOT. He's a very lovey and smiley guy. But I swear to you, I cannot find but a handful of pictures of Sullivan accomplishing the following two tasks at the same time: 1) LOOKing at the camera and 2) SMILING. I was so happy to catch this one day, albeit filled with marker and snot. I am just noticing how his eyes sort of droop at the corners at this stage. Cute!
It is common knowledge that I am a journaler... LOVE it. I have too many, I know. One for mom, one for each of the three kids, now one for dad. I go in spells. And, I sheepishly admit that Sullivan's journal contains far fewer entries than did Jackson's when Jackson was two yrs and three weeks old. But, what ya gonna do? So - onto today's entry: Title: Top 5 things Sullivan would take if he were forced to be a recluse on a island 1) Shoes (multiple pair, if they could still be considered a single item) - he begs to have them put on, even indoors. He has particular ones he likes better than others and moans when we disagree with his choices and actually try to match his shoes with his outfit. When he had his tubes put in his ears, he was - understandably - nervous about the whole thing. So, he was edgy and clingy as we waited in the prep room. But when the nurse tried putting him in those infamous hospital slipper socks... IT WAS OVER. He lost it. So, back on his favorite tennis shoes went. It was a reasonable cave, and one the hospital personel were willing to work with. Off he went down the hall on that hospital bed stripped down to a gown and his tennis shoes. I will never forget that image! 2) Toothpaste. The kid wants to brush his teeth on the hour... on the minute, if we'd let him. I'm not sure what the max amount of flouride a kid is supposed to stay under per day, but I feel we most certainly exceed it with Sullivan. I dread when we go near the bathroom, because it marks the beginning of a few-minute ordeal every time. Goes like this: Sullivan finds his toothbrush and the paste in his toothbrush basket (maybe I ought to hide it ??). He then thrusts them in my direction with his favorite one syllable grunt. I explain to him that it is not time to brush his teeth and to put his items away. He proceeds to suck on the toothpaste dispenser, hoping some remnants of the sweet-tasting bubble gum flavor will grant his tastebuds satisfaction. He could stay in there for a few hours, just sucking the thing. 3) His blanket. Oh, the dang thing is a MUST for any comfort. We had two at one time (small little square lovies), but then a trip to the zoo marked the end of one of them. It was a sad day, because I have increased my anxiety about ending up desperately blanketless by 50%. 4) Fruit snacks. I mean, really. Who doesn't love them? They are potty-training bribery for Jackson. But I got lazy about sneaking them to J when he landed a #1 or #2 in the camode and before long it was a joint reward. When Jackson did his thing, Sullivan was granted a fruit snack too. Now that he knows their source, he just stands with one hand up, rocking back and forth (and grunting with the aforementioned grunt, of course) with his eyes dead set on the stinkin glass container. As I type this entry, I am begining to realize that hiding out of view might be the solution to all of my grunting problems??? Anyway, fruit snacks are now Van's reward for finishing dinner. He gets his that way. Funny how he will NOT partake in any of the rich, chocolaty favorite of J, Scott, or me. He's a candy/sweeties kind of guy, not a chocolate kind of guy. 5) His brother. Anyone who has ever had a big brother must have identified with the infatuating Sullivan has for Jackson at one point or another. So cute. I don't know exactly how to capture the adoration so I will remember it.