Monday, August 30, 2010

3-D Fun at the IMAX!

Last Saturday, Arik got four free tickets to the new IMAX movie about the ocean. It was awesome. Our kids don't have much of an attention span, so we weren't sure how they would react to this new experience. They had never been to a movie like this before, and they had never worn 3-D glasses.

We contemplated sitting by the aisle so we could make a quick escape if we needed to ... but we didn't. We sat in the middle. Our seats were awesome. The movie was only about 45 minutes long, and the kids TOTALLY LOVED IT! You spend a lot of time underwater in this movie. I thought Amy might be a little scared. She thought it was great! At one point she even yelled out, "Mommy ... that dolphin is looking at me!" It was super funny. Thank goodness the movie was really loud.

After the movie, we strolled around the zoo for a few minutes, and then we headed off to Cecils for lunch with Papa and Tessa. The whole weekend was really fun!

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Pre-School Graduation 2010

Today was Matthew's graduation from pre-school. Such a bittersweet transition for all of us. Tomorrow is officially his last day, but the little ceremony was today.

His teacher, Miss Andrea, led the kids through some of their daily activities so the parents could see how they spend their time. It was fun to see the kids fill in the calendar, say all of their "star words" and sing some of their favorite songs.

There were a lot of kids that had been part of Matthew's class for years that left the center earlier this summer. The daycare was kind enough to invite them back for the big day today. That was fun. It was nice to see some of those kids again. And I say "some" of them for a reason. There were a couple of boys that brought out the worst in each other when they were in the same class ... and it didn't take more than two minutes together to bring that behavior back today. Wow. Matthew turns into a different kid around these guys. I don't get it at all.

I was thinking that today would be really emotional, but it wasn't. I am sure the bad behavior had something to do with it. Overall, the whole thing was fun, but just so interesting to see the change in behavior in the presence of these boys. It has been so nice not to have them together this summer. We noticed the change in his behavior - both at daycare and at home - almost immediately.

In the pictures above, you will see Matthew's class, his teacher Miss Andrea and Mr. Jay. Jay is the director at the center, and has pretty much been like another parent to Matthew over the years. Mr. Jay is great, and he has always had a special place in his heart for Matthew. He told me the other day that the only things that have remained constant since the center opened four years ago are him, the cook, two of the infant teachers and Matthew. Awww ...

He is the last of the original crew. Amazing. Time is just moving too fast! We can't believe kindergarten is starting next week. Get ready for a major blog post with LOTS of pictures for that! We are so proud of you Matthew!

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Happy Birthday Arik!

Today, Arik is officially 38 years young! It is tough to have a proper birthday celebration when your birthday falls on a Tuesday ... but I gave it my best shot.

I got up when the alarm went off this morning (small miracle) and drove over to Mel-O-Glaze to get some hot tasty donuts. On my way home, I also stopped at Caribou to get Arik a cup of his favorite coffee. Then it was back to the house to enjoy these tasty treats with the whole family. Both kids were up by the time I got back. I had decorated the dining room the night before, so it was only fitting that we sit in there and eat our donuts on "Toy Story 3" plates (Amy's choice, of course). The kids loved it! Each of them helped Arik open one present.

He got some new ear buds that he wanted for his iPod, and some awesome smelling cologne from Banana Republic!

Just when you thought the birthday fun was coming to an end ... there was more! I stopped at this great place in Edina called Queen of Cakes on my way back from a meeting this afternoon. They do a lot of custom cakes (think Ace of Cakes from the Food Network), but they also have these 6 inch cakes in a cooler that you can just purchase. I got a devils food cake with Baileys mousse frosting (and no ... I am not kidding).

It was fantastic!

I kept it in the fridge at work all day, and even kept the car running with the air conditioning on when I went to pick up the kids from daycare so it wouldn't melt! It was SO GOOD! I will definitely go back there again. What a gem of a place!

Enjoy the photos!

Happy Birthday Arik!

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

T-Ball 2010

Well, the t-ball season is officially over for 2010. Check out our photos from the last night! We have a great picture of the cheering squad, one of Matthew and his team (well ... most of them), and a final shot of Matthew with his medal.

Thank you Southdale YMCA for six weeks of fun!

Matthew really improved on his batting skills this year. He hits the ball hard, and almost always gets it on the first swing. It was easy to see that he was getting into the game more this year. His field work could use some extra practice ... but that is what backyards are for!

Great job Matthew! We are so proud of you!

Monday, August 2, 2010

Happy 3rd Birthday Amy!

Arik and I are wishing Amy the happiest of 3rd birthdays today!

We aren't sure where the time went. Weren't we just looking down at her sweet little face in the hospital?

Wow! What a difference a few years makes! For those of you who don't have the pleasure of knowing Amy - she is quite the character. I often joke that her body isn't big enough to contain her personality - but it is so true! She has this zest for life that is really contagious. She can't be serious to save her soul, and she smiles so hard sometimes that it looks like her face is going to break!

She is funny, and smart, and expressive and willing to do just about ANYTHING.

We just love her so much, and couldn't be more proud to be her parents. Happy Birthday Noodles!

Sunday, August 1, 2010

Amy's 3rd Birthday Party

The official birthday is tomorrow, but we went ahead and celebrated the princess turning three today! What a whirlwind of fun. We woke up this morning to new scooters waiting by the fireplace. That was a huge hit. We had a couple of other little gifts wrapped up for her, but nothing compared to the new wheels!

After we got the "scooting" out of our systems, we headed to the Shoreview YMCA for some outdoor pool fun. They have a great kiddie pool with fountains spraying everywhere, as well as a huge lap pool for us to play in. It was really hot and humid out today, so a dip in the pool is just what the doctor ordered!

After some lunch, both kids settled into their room for a little rest. While they did - it became birthday palooza in the living room! Arik blew up balloons, and got the table all situated. I started prepping the food, and got the cupcakes in the oven. You can't have a birthday without cupcakes, right?

I tried this awesome new frosting recipe, and it turned out really well. Check out the cupcake picture above. Who needs fancy decorating kits when a ziploc bag with the corner trimmed off does the same trick? Not me! Plop on a piece of edible fun, and you have a masterpiece waiting to be eaten!

We were joined by Rod and Diane, Aaron and my Mom for the festivities. As you can see from the photos, Amy made out like a bandit. She got some new clothes, a puzzle, a swimming pool, some Toy Story 3 action figures and a new baby. Uncle Aaron made her day with the "peek-a-boo" baby from Target! What a hit!

We are so lucky to have so much family living close to us. It really makes celebrations like this special when you can share it with the people you love.

Stay tuned for an official birthday post tomorrow! Happy almost birthday Amy!!

Scooter Magic!

Check out the new scooters! There was a lot a fun at the Hanson house today. I promised both kids they could get a scooter for Amy's birthday if she learned to sleep without her nuk.

Well ... she did it! And like any good mother ... I kept my promise.

Cool huh? Amy's is brand new, and Matthew's was a gift from one of my co-workers. Talk about a case of perfect timing! His kids had outgrown it, and they were planning on getting rid of it. When I mentioned that we were looking to buy scooters for both kids, he offered it up. What a nice guy! Arik washed it up, and took it over to a local bike shop to put some new grips on it. It looks awesome, and Matthew just loves it.

The kids spent a lot of time riding their new toys around the block today. Until next time ...