Friday, May 30, 2014

Happy 5th Birthday to Benjamin!

May 30, 2009...I remember so well!  I went down on the 29th after getting a call that Lindsey was going to be induced.  This was early for our little man to be born...  After a LONG grueling labor, he was born on May 30...I was there, watching him come into the world...trying to take pictures for Lindsey and Donnie through my tears...

Now here it is 5 years later.  That day is as clear as if it was yesterday, yet I can't imagine life without him.  Looking back over this past year...the year Benjamin was 4...

May, 2013
 On May 26th, we had Benjamin's 4th  birthday party.  It was a space theme.  You and your friends had your pictures made in the rocket!  The DBSIV (Donald Benjamin Stewart IV)

 Later that day, I got to watch him in swimming lessons.  I'm not sure he was overjoyed with them!
 We took a group picture in front of Oma and Opa's tree.  Both sets of grandparents there to celebrate him turning 4 years old!

June, 2013
 The only time we saw you in June was when we all met in Santa Rosa to celebrate Emerson, turning 4 years old.  His party was at Howarth Park.  You loved riding the train that runs around the park!

July, 2013
 He has had a fascination with fans since he was a little, little guy!  That seems to have continued. 
 I think it's more a fascination with how things work in general.  In that way, he's so much like his Uncle Joshua!

Later in July, Emerson came with us to visit. 
As I said in Emerson's birthday post, you boys played cars, cars, and more cars!

We went to Benjamin's preschool and to a Spanish supermarket as a field trip!

We had a picnic at the park after walking there.

One of my favorite pictures of Emerson and Benjamin!
On July 20, we went to Aunt Carla's pool to swim awhile!

August 31 -September 2, 2013
 I didn't see Benjamin, William, or Emerson much in August because I was in Thailand visiting Joshua, Erica, and Thalia!  On August 31st, they all came up for a few days.  We went to the park, as we usually do. 

 Running these cars along the ledge was a game played by my 4 year olds!  They would start on opposite sides and run towards each other with their cars!

 On September 2nd, we went to the apple farm.  Emerson forgot to bring his Thailand shirt to McKinleyville, but you, William, and I wore ours.

September 7th was the first day of preschool!

October, 2013
 I was down visiting on October 5th.  Benjamin writes his name to sign in at preschool.

 A haircut was badly needed!
 Benjamin, always the helper, helped his dad fill the sandbox with sand!
 We made pancakes on October 6th, something we enjoy doing together.
 I tried to get a photo before I left, but someone's little brother was not really wanting to cooperate.
 October 20th, we celebrated Papa's big 6-0 birthday!  You came up with your family and your Grandma and Uncle Gabe and Emerson came up too.  We had a surprise party for Papa!
 Playing on the iPad is something you and Emerson LOVE to do!  You boys laughed and laughed and laughed as you played!  That is music to a Mimi's ears!

Who knows what Papa was doing here.  Was he being a deer with antlers?  A rabbit?  Who knows?

November, 2013
 In November, Saddie came up to spend Thanksgiving with us.  Everyone came up (except Joshua, Erica, and Thalia since they're in Bangkok)...
Papa bought you a pair of gloves to wear while you helped him and your dad work!

 Um?  Wonder what Saddie was saying?

 This was before Emerson and Uncle Gabe came up...
 Off to the hardware store in Papa's truck...The Great White!

 Of course, once Emerson was here, you boys enjoyed playing some games on the iPad...Some little man was wanting to be included!
 Getting ready for a group shot, you and Emerson posed for me so I could check the lighting...
December, 2013
We didn't see you in December because you went to Santiago, Chile for the month!

January, 2014
 Benjamin, William, Lindsey and Donnie flew in from Chile on January 1.  We drove down to see them.  On January 2, Benjamin and I went to the park for 5 hours!  We had a great time!

 At one point, Benjamin asked me if I could do this:  he puffed out his cheeks and wanted me to try it.

 Later, he opened some Christmas gifts that were waiting for him while he was in Chile.

 January 4th, before heading home, it was time for some pictures...some family pictures!

 Benjamin used to always want to take pictures with my camera...but he hasn't been that interested recently.  This day, however, he was!

 "Smile, Benjamin!"  This is the 'new' smile...not a real natural smile!

February, 2014
 February is the month when I have a week off for President's Week.  Lindsey's birthday is always in that week.  I went down to visit!  Again, I went with Benjamin to watch him sign in at preschool.
 I wanted a picture with my boys!

 It was also a good time for a family picture!
 Benjamin was helping his dad with the trampoline...
 and then he got on to jump awhile!

March, 2014 
 March 2, 2014 was the day of William's 2nd birthday party.  It wasn't suppose to rain, but did...some.  It didn't bother you, or any of the other kids.  You loved the 'chicken feed'...and later fed Oma and Opa's chickens.
 When it started to rain, on went the raincoats...

                                        All 3 of you were checking out the table at the party...

                              Oma and Opa brought their rooster over since it was a farm theme.

                                                                  Feeding the chickens!
                                                You definitely have fun on the trampoline. 

                 You were wrestling with Uncle Gabe and Emerson while you were all jumping!

            I love these!  You had been jumping a long time, the party was over, and you were done!

                                      Back inside, you helped with organizing William's new gift!

 Later in March, you, William, and your mama came up to McKinleyville.  On March 17, you and William came to Mimi's classroom wearing your Ireland shirts! 
 You taught my students how to count in Spanish.  I think you stopped when you got to 100.  They loved it! 
 When it was time for 'silent reading', everyone wanted you to read with them.  You ended up with a group outside.
 Since your Grandma and Grandpa had given you and William the shirts, we T-R-I-E-D to get a good picture of both of you wearing them.  We weren't real successful!

 You saw this 100 piece puzzle and told me you would like to work it.  So we did!  You did most of it by yourself.

                        We also went to another park...the one we call Dizzy-park.
Back at home, it was car-washing time.  

April, 2014
I didn't see you for all of April :(

May, 2014 
 We had your 5th birthday party on Sunday, May 25th.  It wasn't as big a party as your mama usually has.  First, it was time for some family pictures!

 For your party, we made pizza!  You got to form your own and put on whatever toppings you wanted.

    When it was time to sing "Happy Birthday" wanted to put the candles on your cupcake yourself!

                                                We all sang...

                                     You blew out the candles...  I wonder if you made a wish?

 You are so into the Pixar cars from the movies CARS and CARS 2.  You were thrilled to get more of them!

                  You told me Brandon was your best friend!  He's just a tad bit older, just days older! 
 Tattoos were a popular item!  You learned how to put them you helped put tattoos on lots of people!  They were of the CARS car characters...Lightning McQueen, Tow Mater, etc.

 This trip, Mimi and Papa stayed in a hotel.  You LOVED the liked being in charge of the key, opening all the doors with it, and the pool.  We went back on May 26th and swam awhile.  You ended up going all over the pool once you were confident in your water wings! 

 Now here it is, May 30th.... your birthday!  Now you are 5 years old!  Wow!  You amaze me with your incredible gift of languages and how you are so inquisitive to how things work.  Five years how time flies!

Happy 5th Birthday, Benjamin!

Your Mimi sure does love you!