Eric and I celebrated our 4th anniversary this year. We celebrated at the Melting Pot. Eric's thought behind that was that we would be dipping fruit into chocolate for dessert (following with the "fruit and flowers" tradition for the 4th year of marriage). When they brought out our dessert, we laughed a little about the fact that the only fruit on the plate were strawberries and bananas. But hey, I wasn't mad about having to eat brownies, rice krispy treats, marshmallows and cheesecake.
Now I will be the first to admit that our past two anniversaries have been a little lazy on my part. I will totally use the "pregnant card" and blame it on the hormones and lack of energy. So I knew this year had to require at least some effort on my part. I pulled in two of my most resourceful family members to create for Eric a meaningful gift that I thought he might enjoy. I emailed Eric's 91 year old Grandpa for marriage tips and advice. And with that, I recruited the help of my cousin Jackie to take Grandpa's words and form it into the shape of a pear. It turned out exactly how I imagined, as did Eric's awesome reaction to it:
And in true Eric fashion, he managed to one-up me again. His gift to me was to make me a bridal bouquet and for us to use it to renew our vows at our home church. When Eric and I got married, we hadn't fully dipped our feet into our Christian faith. And we have both really grown in our spiritual walk, and it's really impacted us as individuals greatly, but it has truly made a difference in our marriage as well. So now that we are happy in a home church, it was appropriate and meaningful for us to declare our commitment to each other, in front of our family and in the presence of God.
I will say this, 2 kids and an out-of-state move within 2 years is crazy, to say the least. Adjusting to such big and rapid changes has been exhausting and challenging. I am proud to say that our marriage has not only survived, but has grown in strength and in love (and in fath). It is a crazy life, but I wouldn't trade it for anything in the world and I am having so much fun trying to figure it out with Eric and our silly children.
This whole time I thought Connor was just a pretty face. It turns out this kid is also pretty darn smart!
I spent yesterday afternoon shopping and Connor was my sidekick. I dropped my keys and said "uh oh" and was caught off guard to hear Connor mimicking me. I thought it was a total coincidence so I said it again and sure enough he copied me.
Riley continues to amaze me more and more each day. She is growing up so fast, she talks so much, still loves to sing and dance, and she will not go to bed without one or ten bedtime stories. The girl loves to read! She gets so many books from her aunties and definitely picks her favorites (books, not aunties.)
Here she is reading one of her favorite Sandra Boynton books:
I know I've said it before, but we really are seeing huge improvements as far as Riley and Connor's relationship (or rather, Riley's attitude towards having a baby brother). She will be the first to say "go get him?" when he is crying in the morning. She hugs and kisses him goodbye when she heads to school. She will initiate playing peekaboo with him and loves to make him laugh. And just the other evening, while we weren't watching, she grabbed a hold of his spoon and tried to feed him:
Connor on the other hand always lights up when his sister is just in the same room as him.
My good friend Will married the love of his life this past Saturday, and Connor was my travel buddy as we made our way to California to attend the wedding but to also spend some quality time with friends and family.
Now it was no random selection for Connor coming with me, as opposed to Riley. Although both do well on the plane, Riley is now at an age where she tells me when she's had enough. So I picked the non-speaking, easily cuddling baby and Connor proved my choice to be a good one. He did so well on both flights, I was so proud every time someone complimented on how good my baby was (although I am truly aware it was all luck!)
We stayed with the Lam family, and I just loved how much Connor loved his cousins. All Aidan and Brooke had to do was walk into the room and Connor would immediately start giggling:
Connor got to spend some time with his great grandma, which was so special:
Will and Nancy tied the knot in a beautiful outdoor venue, followed by an elegant reception at The Villa in Westminster. My heart was filled with so much joy seeing how completely happy Will was that night. I am so thankful to have witness what was without a doubt the best day of his life:
I got to catch up with some of my long time friends, some that I've known for over 20 years!
It was a great trip, but we certainly missed Eric and Riley, who were at home also having a fun weekend. I am thankful for a husband who I completely trust with our children-- not having to worry about how things are going while I am away.
It was a great weekend, and as always, I miss California so much already.