Thursday, May 30, 2013

Happy 4th Birthday, Benjamin!

 Benjamin is 4 years old today!  I remember so well four years ago...when this little man was born...and I was there, watching him come into our world.  He came 17 days after his cousin, Emerson...  I love these little watching them grow up...and grow up together.  Last year, on June 3, they were together for Benjamin's birthday party.  They were both working on holdingup three fingers...saying they were 3 years old!

 In the middle of June, this little man came up to visit.  At that time, he was really into water...he'd play in the sink as long as we'd let him...filling up containers, dumping them, refilling... just playing around. 

 Emerson joined us for a few days..and of course, we went to the park to play!  See those things they're holding?  They are little scales for weighing things like suitcases...only Benjamin began to use it as a 'camera'...holding it up to his eye and pulling the hook like he was taking a picture.

 He had only been a big brother  to William for 3 1/2 months...

 Sometimes, being a big brother can be.....  well, I'm not sure what Benjamin was feeling here!
 At the end of June, I was back down to see the boys before I flew out for Europe.  Benjamin was introducing playing with cars to William...
 Tomatoes...he absolutely loves them!
 In July, Mimi came home from Europe...and Joshua and Saddie flew in to visit.
 We all came up to Mimi & Papa's house...

 Benjamin, who loves fruit of just about any kind, showed his Saddie how to pick blueberries.

 Benjamin is intrigued with how things work.  He was checking it all out while his Papa and Uncle Joshua were putting in a sprinkler system.

 Benjamin was still enjoying his airplane...

 Not liking to have his hair washed, the promise of getting to use the hair dryer, (and figure out how the fan/heater inside the dryer worked) was an incentive to calmly let his hair be washed.
Before they left, Lindsey and I got some photos of the boys in their matching clothes.

In August, Benjamin came back to visit.
 August 17th, we went to what we call "Dizzy Park" because of all the rides that spin.

 There is this adorable 'crooked house' that the boys climbed in...

 Benjamin was also testing his photography skills...
 On the 19th, Emerson was here!!!  Benjamin continued his photography on his cousin :)
 The park by our house is always a popular destination for these boys!  They ran, they rolled down hills, they slid, they played in the sand...they had fun...and this Mimi probably had the most fun of all watching them.

 We tried for more matching outfit pictures on August 19...
 Then it was back to the park...
Remember in July when Benjamin was checking out Uncle Joshua and Papa's sprinkler system?  Well, here at the park, these little men were having quite a discussion on the sprinkler head.  I don't think you can see it in the photo, but it's right in front of Benjamin's shoe.  I just LOVE this picture!

The 2nd and 3rd of September, we were back down at Benjamin's house.

 We visited the farmer's market...
 and went to breakfast at Panera...
At the end of September, we were back down again...Emerson came down to join us.

 Benjamin was enjoying using Mimi's camera....he's actually an amazing photographer!

 Emerson and Benjamin were having a lesson on Google Earth from Uncle Donnie/Daddy!
 September 30, Benjamin was giving his dad a hand with digging the dirt in the backyard...

 It was also a great time for a family picture!
 October 20th, we were in the bay area for a meeting.  Benjamin brought his family up to help celebrate his Papa's birthday.  Uncle Gabe and Emerson were also there.  We played at a park...went to dinner...and the big boys spent the night with Mimi and Papa at the hotel.

The boys were enjoying blowing bubbles!
 I came down to Benjamin's for Veteran's Lindsey and I could go to a cooking conference.  In the evening, Benjamin would say something he was thankful for...his mama or daddy would write it on a leaf, and then Benjamin would place it on their 'Thankful Tree.'

 One morning in the room where I slept, the light coming from the window was just perfect for picture taking... Benjamin was a great model!

 Benjamin was still enjoying 'driving Mimi's car.'
 We went to Restoration Hardware...did some shopping...and took a few photos...
 We ate lunch at Sprouts!
 In December, Benjamin, William, and Linz came to visit.  Donnie actually came up a little later. 
 Benjamin went with his Papa and me to pick out a Christmas tree...
 and then decorate it!

 On December 8th, Lindsey brought the boys up to school.  They even ate lunch in the lunchroom with my class.
 The girls just love Benjamin!  (and vice versa)
 We went to a local apple farm to take photos for Lindsey and Donnie's Christmas card...

We definitely had fun!
 For Christmas, we all went to Uncle John and Aunt Becky's house in Colorado!
 The boys were mesmerized by a show on crashing cars and trucks!

 Benjamin got to snowboard...with a little help from his Dad!

Gabe and Emerson had already left...but I still had 3/4 of my grandkids!
 In January, we met at the Charles Shultz museum...and then for dinner.
 February was a big month with Lindsey and William's birthdays.  Lucky for me, I was off a week for 'President's Week'...and was able to spend Lindsey's birthday with her...and William...and Benjamin!  (and Donnie, too!)
 Benjamin and I baked cupcakes for his sweet mama's birthday...

 Benjamin rode his Skuut (balance bike) to the park...and the rest of us walked...

 Later in the week, Emerson came, and back we went to the park.  Benjamin had been wanting to have a 'picnic' on one of these 'tables with the hole in it.'  (The 'hole' is where you can set a drink.)
 These boys had a blast!
 They discovered a new way to ride their scooters!

 A family photo on William's first birthday!
 Jean Marie was there...teaching Benjamin a little French!

 We didn't see Benjamin in March...but back he came to visit in April!  Lucky for us, Benjamin, William, and Lindsey came up for Easter week!  Benjamin absolutely LOVES cars...and when we went to the park, his cars needed to come too.  His love of cars has already rubbed off on his little brother.
 It was a bit chilly outside, but we went to the beach anyway.  Digging in the sand is about as fun as digging in the dirt.
 We went back to "Dizzy Park"  and Benjamin wanted his mama to swing him HIGH.  It was actually a bit too high for this Mimi's comfort!  As you can see, Benjamin loved it.
 Mimi's don't push quite so high...
 A bit happier now that his mama is pushing him!
After a few days, Emerson came up to join in the fun!  This was hilarious, getting the cups to stay on their chins...
 Benjamin and Emerson are buddies!  They have their fair share of arguments these days, but they love each other and have a lot of fun, too.  The other thing they've started doing, is talking...I mean, really talking...talking about serious things! 

 Benjamin's world is a bit different with the addition of William...with the addition of William who believes he should be involved in everything Benjamin does! 

They're buddies and they love to go to the park and play!
Now here we are in May... the month of Benjamin's birth...the month he turns 4 years old!  His birthday is today, May 30, but we had his party this past Sunday, May 26.

The theme was Space...

 Benjamin made sure William was up in space in his swing...
 When it was time for cupcakes...the wind made it a bit difficult to light the candles...
 They finally were lit, we all sang 'happy birthday'....and everyone enjoyed the cupcakes!
 Benjamin's grandma was trying to get a picture of the birthday boy as an astronaut...he wasn't being very cooperative...
What a great party it was...we played, barbequed, bounced on the trampoline, watched Donnie set off rockets... and just had a great time. 
 After the party, it was time for Benjamin's swimming lessons.  He and his dad go on Sunday afternoons. 

 At the end of the afternoon, we all gathered in the living room to watch our little man open his gifts...
 He liked everything...even his pantilones... but he was EXCITED about all his cars!

So here we the end of your 3rd year!  Now you are 4 years old!

Happy Birthday, Benjamin!!!

Your Mimi sure does love you...