Saturday, July 23, 2011

Zachary's pirate birthday party

At long last (it seems) Zachary had his birthday party. We've been thinking about pirates for sooooo long. I don't know why I didn't take a picture of all the decorations but here's the cake. I made it myself from a picture in a magazine. Not perfect but I think it's cute.
We already had this "treasure" chest so it was the perfect spot to hold goodie bags for the party guests.
No summertime party would be complete over here without swimming. Only one of the six kids refused to get in the pool at all.

When it was time to open the birthday gifts they had disappeared! Captain Hook had stolen them and left this note in their place.
The clues led the kids throughout the house and finally back to the living room where Captain Hook dropped them while escaping from the crocodile.

The kids thought the hunt for the gifts was so fun. After the gifts were opened they put the clues back around the house and pretended to do it again. Zachary even wanted to keep the clues in his bedroom tonight.

Zachary got some great gifts (although I got few pictures)! Thank you everybody!

Finally the kids all sat together to eat hotdogs & hamburgers with fruit & chips.

Then we had cake & icecream last.

Only about 3 1/2 months until Alex's birthday. You can bet he's already planning his party!

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Zachary is five!

Today my youngest baby turned five. Once again both boys are the same age for about 3 1/2 months. We started the morning out with a candle in Zachary's muffin at breakfast. Alex & I sang to him and he loved it. He was so excited that his birthday was finally here!

Yesterday Zachary was very upset (& actually cried twice) about the fact that nobody was coming to see him on his birthday. I tried to explain that his party wasn't until Saturday & he'd see everybody then but he was still very sad. I promised him that today was going to be a special day with just our little family. After breakfast we Skyped with Daddy and went ahead and opened the gifts that Daddy had mailed. They were a hit - super hero's, a fleece super hero blanket, and a pirate puzzle - Daddy did good.

I let the birthday boy pick whatever he wanted for lunch and the little stinker said crab legs! Seriously, what happened to noodles or pancakes or something? Off we went to Joe's Crab Shack.
He got his own kids order of crab legs and ate every last bite! The only downside was that I had to crack them all. I let both boys get ice cream for dessert.
Then our waiter stuffed balled up paper towels in Zachary's shirt sleeves and had him stand up on his chair and make muscle poses while the whole restaurant sang Happy Birthday to him. I could tell he loved it but he was a little shy for some reason.
Zachary had originally picked steak for dinner but thankfully he changed his mind. Instead he chose to eat (frozen) mini corndogs and other assorted finger foods so both boys could eat on the living room floor and have a movie night. Much easier & cheaper for me. Woo-hoo!

Now the birthday boy is tucked in bed with his new blanket (Thank you Daddy!).
I'm pretty sure he's going to try to use his birthday power for the rest of the week until his party. I just hope he doesn't get out of control!
Happy Fifth Birthday Zachary!!

Wednesday, July 13, 2011


Yesterday we made our annual pilgrimage to SeaWorld in San Antonio. Anheuser-Busch has a great program that allows active military and their families to visit one of their parks once a year for free so we have gone for several years even before we had kids. For any military families out there that didn't know about it it's called Here's to the Heroes. Anyway - thumbs up to SeaWorld & Anheuser-Busch! I didn't know if I'd have a problem getting in without Chris this year and even took a copy of his orders with me just in case. I didn't need to worry though. They let me sign the paper for him and in we went. My cousin Kelli came with us and it was a great help to have another adult to keep an eye on the boys. They were pretty good all day though.

This year there were actually a few new or changed up shows.The 4D show had changed. It's now a Sesame Street show. This was the first thing we went to and the boys loved it! I guess it is pretty cool to get water sprayed on you and air blown on you while watching a movie.
Right next to that theater was a Sesame Street play area where we watched another Sesame Street show and then got to meet the characters. Zachary wanted to see each and every one and I think he did. Elmo never came out but all the rest did. Alex couldn't have cared less.

We did let the boys play a bit after that but not too long. There was too much to see to waste it on a playground (in my opinion)!

We saw several good shows - Azul (Great!), One Ocean (the new Shamu show), and The Cannery Row Capers (it actually changed a bit this year) but I didn't get any pictures of the shows. Here we are hanging out and waiting for Shamu.

The Sea Lions behind the show. There were about three sweet little babies in there.
Alex was especially anxious to get to the water park. We played in the wave pool where Zachary would sink to the bottom after each wave & then pop back up. That's exactly what he wanted to do. He WOULD NOT let anybody help him to jump over the waves. We also played on the splashy play place (not the real name - lol). I could only catch Alex for a second and not Zachary at all. They were moving too much in there.
One of the last shows we saw was yet another Sesame Street show - Elmo & the Bookaneers. This was another new one for us and about pirates that liked to read.
A ton of kids stood around the stage to watch and the characters would touch their hands from time to time. Alex & Zachary started out sitting with me & Kelli but then moved to the front with the other kids.
One our way out of the park we ran into a few more characters. A shark that I don't know.
Last but not least, the whale himself, Shamu.
Zachary kept saying that he wanted to do all the jobs in the park. First he wanted to be one of the characters, then an animal trainer. Totally different end of the spectrum. We were all dead tired at the end of the day but we all had such a good time. We can't wait to go back again next year with daddy!

Monday, July 11, 2011

A trip to the zoo

On Friday the boys and I went to the zoo along with my cousin and her daughter and my friend and her son. I decided to try a different zoo that's closer to my parents house that my friend has been to several times. The Cameron Park Zoo was really pretty nice. Nobody can help the heat outside but this zoo was fairly shady which helped. There were also a couple of nice spots for the kids to play in like this area near the orangutans.

We got a great close view of two active elephants munching down on hay. Then one of them decided to cool off by splashing himself with water. He was pretty cool.

The meerkats showed off a little bit when we walked up to them. They just all scampered out of their little holes and one climbed up to the top and stood up really straight and made some funny noises. Cute!
We decided just to eat lunch in the zoo instead of trying to leave and come back. Luckily we ate a little early because the line got long even though the zoo didn't seem crowded at all.
Zachary really enjoyed pulling around his cousin Elizabeth and she loved to ride in the wagon so it worked out! Zachary kept saying he had such big muscles!
The otter tank was really neat because it had a clear tube slide that went through it. The four kids slide through the otters over and over.
The heat always makes the animals lay around. We didn't get a very good view of several of them because they were laying way on the opposite side of their habitats. We were lucky that the jaguar was laying pressed right up to the glass so the kids got to check him out up close.
There was another play area at the end of our loop around the zoo. There was a big treehouse with a slide and this huge snake that you could walk inside the mouth. Alex & Zachary were pretending they were Harry Potter fighting the basilisk.

These cute butterfly & lady bug cutouts were there too. Alex finally showed Elizabeth where to put her head but I'm not sure she enjoyed it. She looks more like she's in the guillotine the way she's hanging her head over. Hee hee!

We had no choice but to end the hot day with ice cream!
We had a good time at the zoo and a great time with our friends & family. I'm so glad we all got to go together!