A classic family picture! (Cara had four permanent molars pulled that day for her braces so she didn’t fully participate.) I guess that is a sure sign that she is getting older!
Caleb's birthday kicks off birthday season on February 28th. This was a "no party" year for him yet he seems to get most things he wants and had a bunch of boys over for a nerf war in honor of his birthday. I was working on his cake that night and had it on the freezer. (Yes, it is blue, just the way he wanted it.) When someone opened the freezer the cake fell off and landed frosting down on the steps. Caleb wasn't too upset so we bagged the birthday cake for this year. He likes picking his own gifts so we gave him some money, along with a ski bag and snowboarding boots. He spent the money as quickly as he could on an air soft gun. It is hard to believe we have a teenager in the house, but he is doing his best to make it real by testing our patience.
One week after Caleb's birthday was Ali's big day. This year we are moving to odd numbers, Ali turned seven. I love that she is so content and happy with anything she receives. She loved her new doll. Her birthday was on a busy weeknight so we put off her birthday party until the weekend. Somehow she ended up with two cakes this year. The evening of her birthday we had the Knights over to celebrate with us and to help us eat cake and ice cream. Her party was super fun! So many girls adore Ali. It was really hard to keep her party list short. We stuck with the girls in our ward who do dance and other activities with her. We didn't invite any "school friends" and we didn't even invite all of the neighbor hood girls. I just have to remind myself, everyone can't be invited to everything every time. It is a hard lesson, but important to keep things in perspective.
Her birthday Ali's birthday party theme was "Art." The girls painted "treasure boxes." They were so cute meticulously working on them. I hadn't realized how gifted Ali must be at art. In comparison to the others hers looked like a much older girls did it. They all worked for a long time on them, and I think they were proud of their good work. Play dough is a great filler activity as the children arrived and after they finished painting their boxes. Ali received some really fun crafty gifts including this blanket that she recruited help with, a fairy garden, cards, and a much more. It is beginning to warm up and the snow is finally melting. The kids LOVE for Josh to bounce them on the tramp. There are always a lot of squeals of delight when he is out there. I just keep my fingers crossed that everyone stays safe!
Cara was also spoiled for her birthday. She got a crystal chandelier for her bedroom and a ski bag. It was a "no party" year for her too, but she did have friends over after school on her birthday. She also had a late night that weekend. The weather had been nice and she wanted to play night games. The games didn't last very long because they all got freaked out about leprechauns. It was just a little too scary to be outside on St. Patrick’s Day!
Cara is becoming such a helpful and delightful young woman. She wakes up at 7 AM every day and gets all of her chores and jobs done in the morning before she leaves for school. I require some kind of talent development every day so she is currently teaching herself the ukulele using you tube. Reading and writing continues to be a challenge, but her iPad serves as a great tool and she has understanding friends who help her often. She certainly has her mood swings, but she is so helpful around the house. She loves to cook and doesn't fuss too much about cleaning when she is asked. Ages 1-5 feel like a lifetime, but it amazes me how quickly my children are growing up now!!