Monday, January 31, 2011

Happy Birthday!!

Happy Birthday, Alex!!  

We celebrated yesterday with my sister and her family and my parents.  Alex has been looking forward to his birthday party for the last few weeks.  He told me early on that he wanted a strawberry cake and, amazingly enough, he never once changed his mind.  I baked the cake up on Saturday and it was sooo hard for the boys not to get into it.  Alex kept asking to smell it - "Can I smell my strawberry cake?"

While Mom and I put the finishing touches on the Baked Potato Soup  my sis monitored the kids as they put the finishing touches on the cake.  What kid doesn't love adding sprinkles to a cake??

Ain't it cute?  Quite festive and perfect for a 3 year old.

Alex counting his THREE candles.

Time for a silly pose.

There's our handsome big boy!
Alex waited patiently through soup (though the kids opted for the more kid-friendly pb&j after they tried the soup), then through cake and ice cream.  Finally it was time to dive into the presents!

"Look!  A book!"

Sharing the new pop-up dinosaur tent with Brother.

I'm not sure who quoted the phrase first but now Alex is stuck on being "In the belly of the beast!!"
We all had a great day with family celebrating this special little (big) guy.

Sunday, January 30, 2011

Alex turns 3 tomorrow??

Is it possible?  3 years ago at this time I was enduring labor pains.  I had been dealing with painful contractions every twenty minutes since around 1am and had convinced myself I was in false labor.  I was frustrated because I couldn't get any decent sleep yet worried that these painful contractions weren't doing anything helpful.  Luckily, they did pick up in intensity and got closer together.  I was on the phone with my mom and she convinced me that it was probably time to head to the hospital.  But Biju wasn't home.  He had taken Ajay to pick up some dinner.  Mom called him and told him to come home and get me while I called my sister to come over, get Ajay put to bed and to sleep on our couch.  We got to the hospital around 8:30/9pm and Alex arrived at 1:21am.

A couple of weeks before Alex was born.

Our bun fresh out of the oven. (The date on our camera was off.)

Daddy introducing Big Brother to Little Brother

All snuggly and warm.

Checking out this new baby that has come into our lives - with the Koala Bear he picked out to give Alex.

Saturday, January 29, 2011

Playtime in January

January has certainly had an eclectic offering of temperatures to offer.  We had decent weather, downright nasty weather and more recently some gorgeous (record breaking) weather.  The boys love playing in the decent and gorgeous weather and think they want to play in the nasty weather, too. 

They put some coats on and went out to play in the decent weather - Ajay even pointed out some flowers trying to grow! 

Sometimes they can play so nicely together!

No snow on the mittens but plenty of dirt!

Time to pose for Mama!
Headed out to see the first snow (that left anything on the ground, that is).  Alex was feeling ill but he couldn't let Brother go outside without him!

After getting reacquainted with snow they went back inside.  Alex cuddled up on the couch and Ajay played chess with Daddy.

Laying on a corn bag in hopes of helping his earache.

Learning how to play chess.  (An ongoing process.)

I made up some garlic-oil to drop into his ear and gently placed the warm corn bag over his ear.  This seemed to help a lot, because he fell asleep!
Then we had some REAL snow!  This is where the "nasty weather" comes in.  Alex lasted about 5 minutes outside (I barely had time to get myself bundled up to go out before he was crying to come back in).  Ajay lasted about 10 minutes.  You can't blame them - school had been canceled because the temps/wind chills were too low.  it.was.cold!

Yesterday we had a high of 72 - which broke an old record of 69 (I don't know what year).  Today isn't going to reach that level but it is still going to be pushing 60, I do believe.  The boys already went outside this morning and played for an hour.  And I don't think they fought once the whole time!  Lovely!!!  I didn't get any photos but from what I could tell, they were digging in the garden, playing on their slide/swing set and going hunting.  I asked what they were hunting for and Ajay told me "meat." - well, that is a good thing to hunt for, I guess.

Friday, January 21, 2011


I really don't have a title for this post since it is going to be a hodge podge of random things.  I have pics I want to share with you but each can't really stand on their own. 

Happy New Year!

Alex asked me to make a cake for the new year, so I did.  I made two rounds to stack on top of each other, however one cake didn't come out of the pan well.  It stuck.  So it crumbled.  We still used the good one to frost.  I made up a cream cheese frosting, but added too much milk, so it was hard to use as a decorating frosting.  I still tried, though. 

And we didn't let the crumbled cake go to waste.  We used the extra frosting and just mixed it all together with the crumbs.  A little messy but it tasted the same as the "pretty" cake.

Before Christmas vacation Ajay and girl in his kindergarten class got ahold of some scissors and decided to play barber shop.  We typically part his hair a certain way but recently we've started parting it the other direction in the hopes of hiding the gap.   (Here it isn't parted at all - I combed it straight forward to show off the cut!)

After I took Brother's photo Alex decided he wanted his pic taken, too.  And he decided to give me a silly pose.   (Alex is watching me put this blog post together and he saw his picture.  "There I am, handsome."

Every night, before I got to bed, I check on the boys.  This is how I found Ajay sleeping one night - all folded in half. 

Wednesday, January 19, 2011


During the week between Christmas and New Years we had some visitors.  A couple of Biju's buddies from college drove into town.  It was a short, whirlwind trip but it was nice catching up with them again.  They went to the university and various places close by to tour their old stomping grounds.  They ate lunch at one of their favorite places from days gone by (we actually still nab food from there now and then, very tasty!). 

(R to L) Biju, holding a very timid Alex, Sashi, Ajay dressed as a clown, Kiran and his wife. 

It took awhile but Alex eventually warmed up.  He took to Sashi first.

And who doesn't invite their company to make a pot of tea while they're visiting??   (The Indian way, with half milk, half water, tea grounds and sugar.  Mmm!)

Speak no evil, hear no evil, see no evil :)
It has been two years since we've seen Sashi and probably 6 or 7 years since we've seen Kiran.  Amazing how time flies.  We'll have to make sure we don't go so long in between visits, again!!

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Christmas Day

Still trying to get caught up from Christmas activities.... so this is going to be a long post.  I thought about dividing it into three, but figured I'd rather just get it all out there :)

Christmas Morning, Part 1

The boys actually slept in on Christmas morning, can you believe it??  Even though I went to bed around 12:30am, I woke up at 6:30am and couldn't get back to sleep no matter how hard I tried.  I think I laid in bed an hour before Ajay finally opened our door and rattled off the goodies that Santa had brought him. 

Checking out what was in their stockings.

The four of us playing Ajay's new game, Pop the Pig.

Alex's turn to feed the pig!

Santa put some washable finger paints in the boys' stockings, so we let the boys cozy up to the table to make some art.

Getting into the artwork!

Boys love messes!

Can we guess what Ajay's favorite color is?
Christmas Morning, Part II

We got the call from my brother/sister-in-law letting us know breakfast was ready down at their place.  We all got dressed and headed down the road a bit to continue our Christmas Morning festivities.  First off, we let the kids open a gift from Biju and I before we left for church.  While we were gone, they ate and let the kids open another gift or two.  Once we returned, we dug in.

Time for coloring - Logan and Alex.  (Alex multi-tasking, talking on a plastic phone.)

Alex ripping into the Thomas the Tank Engine puzzle that Ajay got for him.

Ajay ripping into the present Alex gave him.  (See below picture to see what he got.)

This was a big hit! 

Alex on a little rocking chair, hanging out with the two little Zhu-Zhu pets.
Sadly, while we were opening gifts we got a call that my great aunt, Teenie, had passed away earlier that morning.  While we were very sad to hear of her passing it brought us comfort that she was no longer in pain and that she was spending such a special day with the Birthday Boy.  

Christmas Afternoon

Just a lot of hanging out back up at my parents house.  I think there was a nap or two taken.  

Uncle Biju and Tessa.

Ajay thrilled to hold baby Tessa!
Christmas Evening

On Christmas Evening, we usually like to go visit other family members.  Last Christmas we were all snowed in and couldn't go anywhere.  The Christmas before that, we were in India.  For one reason or another, when the math was all added up, it had been somewhere between 4 and 6 years since I'd seen members of this side of the family!!  We cannot let that happen again.  It's hard for me to believe these cousins are adults!! 
My camera batteries died (boo!) so I didn't get pics of everyone like I wanted.  I'm especially sad that I didn't get pics of everyone jamming out on the Wii game, Dance Party (I think that was the name).  There was some tough competition!  Ajay l.o.v.e.d. this game and jumped in whenever he could steal a Wii-mote.

Cousins - how can they be adults??  Getting married?  Having babies??

The Grinch!

Uncle Larry conversing with Dad - a couple of introverts avoiding the crowds :)

We had a very nice Christmas Eve and Christmas Day - it was wonderful to visit with family!