Sunday, April 27, 2014

{Real Life: #boymomproblems}

Okay, okay, before anyone gets their feathers ruffled, let me provide a disclaimer. I realize that this post title is a gross oversimplification. The following scenarios could totally apply to a girl, and all boys do not conform to these stereotypes. boys do. Also, I don't actually view my kids' tendencies towards dirtiness and wildness as problems. The laundry and heart palpitations, however, are a different story.

If ever there was any doubt this kid is crazy expressive, these pictures are the only evidence required to settle that debate. Aksel has a very curious personality. He loves to explore and isn't afraid to get messy. Last weekend he ventured into the herb garden while I was cutting Andreas' hair in the backyard.

At first Anders was 'helping' me, but he couldn't let Aksel have all of the dirty fun. At least his delayed interest gave me time to peel his clothes off before he dove in. He kept assuring me he wasn't 'sitting on my flower beds' because he was kindly avoiding the tiny basil plant in his bucket. You can't see it, but Aksel was actually semi-crushing my rosemary starter.

The boys had an awesome time. And even though they were a giant mess, it was nothing a quick bath couldn't remedy. Also, by some miracle, neither the basil nor the rosemary were harmed during their adventure.

Another habit I'm attributing to testosterone is the monkey-like tendency Aksel has recently started exhibiting. The kid is climbing everything, and from what I can tell, he has no concerns regarding personal injury or any risks to my health (such as the shortening of my life span that most certainly occurs as a direct result of watching these acrobatics). Today I decided to follow him around the house and document his exploration.

His first stop was the bathroom. He immediately sought out his toothbrush, a favorite tool for our teething toddler.

Our next stop was the bedroom. Please notice that he wasn't satisfied by merely standing on the seat of his rocking moose. His desire for greater heights required him to conquer the antlers! He also loves to perch on the ottoman in his room, but today he settled for a more relaxing position.

Not featured is the living room, where just today he demonstrated his ability to crawl up and down both our chairs. 

Lastly we have this gem. Andreas and Anders were out mowing the front yard, and what better vantage point to watch the activity than the window sill next to our front door?! Clearly he didn't want to miss a thing.

Even though my laundry is never-ending, bath time almost always results in a dirt ring around the tub, and I basically have to shut every door in my house to prevent my one-year-old from ascending the furniture, I wouldn't want it any other way!

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

{Holiday: Easter}

Our family had an amazing Easter weekend. We spent a lot of quality time together, enjoying Easter traditions and talking about the hope we have in Jesus Christ. 

On Saturday, we dyed Easter eggs. Anders had an awesome time coloring and decorating the eggs, but I'm pretty sure his greatest thrills came from directing Andreas and me. He would tell us what color to dye which egg, remind us when he thought they needed turning in the dye cups, and choose what words or pictures he wanted drawn on each. 

While Anders was excited to decorate the eggs, Aksel was more interested in eating them.

Truth be told, we only ended up with 5 eggs at the end of this activity because the boys kept begging to eat them. Kids are so weird. 

On Sunday after church, my sister and I both attempted to take some family photos. The picture below is a pretty fair representation of the results. It was extremely bright, neither of the boys was all that interested in surrendering his Easter basket loot (Aksel is holding a mini spatula and Anders a Pez dispenser), and almost no picture features both boys actually looking at the camera. I take that back. There was a group of pictures where they were both facing forward, but in all of them Anders is making his favorite 'cheetah face', which looks more angry than happy, so I decided not to share any of those. Anyway, you get the gist. The boys wore adorable, matching outfits that made them even cuter than normal and it was virtually impossible to say no to their (read: Anders') incessant requests for just one more piece of candy.  

After church, Easter baskets, brunch, and photos, it was finally time for the egg hunt! Andreas helped Aksel discover what all the fuss was about...

...while Anders ran around collecting 90% of the eggs despite our constant requests that he leave some for Aksel. Typical oldest child ;)

And that concludes the bulk of our festivities!

Saturday, April 12, 2014

{Holiday: Aksel's 1st Birthday!}

Our sweet babe just turned one! And the good news is that his birthday dramatically improved from this point...

Primarily because we very quickly acknowledged that removing the cupcake from in front of him, even for a minute, was a baaaaad idea. The kid had never even had a cupcake! How did he know it was worth missing that much?! Perceptive little guy. The picture above was the result of momentarily swiping the cupcake in an attempt to remove a portion of that massive pile of icing. After that I had to go into full-on ninja mode just to remove the cupcake liner before he started shoveling.

I mean look at that determination, perfect form for minimum crumb loss.

I think it's safe to say he enjoyed the cupcake.

But let's rewind. The cupcake incident actually occurred the day after Aksel's birthday. 

The day of his actual birthday began as all birthdays do in our house, with presents! Sadly I don't have any pictures because both Andreas and I were too busy monitoring Anders 'assisting' with gift unwrapping to whip out the camera. We busied ourselves the rest of the day playing with new toys and reading new books, only taking the occasional break for a Chick-Fil-A ice cream or McAllister's macaroni and cheese. Basically everything a one year old boy's dreams are made of. And with all that excitement, I flat out forgot to get to the cupcake place before it closed.  Buttttt, our boy deserved his cupcake, so we just picked one up the next day!

The birthday celebration continued on Saturday morning with a low-key brunch.

There was plenty of yummy food...

...and a bunch of black and white photos to share some of our favorite memories over the past year.

In lieu of a birthday cake, I opted to artistically stack donuts on a cake platter. Eat your heart out, Pinterest moms ;)

Aksel didn't seem to mind one bit. While the parents ate and mingled, the kids crawled, cruised, walked, and ran around the house, playing with toys, begging for donuts, and generally having a great time.

What a joy this year has been. Aksel has increased the size of our family, expanded our capacity to love, inhibited our ability to sleep, bestowed the. best. cuddles., and tolerated a fair amount of rough affection from his older brother. He is the perfect fit in our foursome. We love you, Aksel!