Thursday, October 23, 2014

Day to Day Happenings from May, yes May...

I have gotten so far behind on the blog it is a bit humorous now.  I blame it on all our fun adventures, people visiting, and traveling throughout the past few months.  I still find it extremely important to document our lifes' adventures here since I use this as a journal. So hopefully I will be able to slowly catch up from these past few weeks.  Plus I'm sure our parents would love to see pictures of our little man!

May brought back the heat and humidity of summertime.  The humidity crept in slowly and before we knew it, we were dripping sweat by simply sitting.  Gotta love the tropical environment!  Daxton loved the opportunity to use his water table whenever and as often as he could.  We even through in a bubble machine to liven things up...

He loved (and still does) playing with his water puzzle boats that grandma sent him for Easter...
So in love with those sweaty curls as well!

May also brought on the rainy season.
I've never lived anywhere that has such a defined weather system.  About half way through May a massive storm cloud rolled in and dumped heavily for a couple hours and then moved on.  The same thing happened the next day...and the next day...and so on.  It was pretty crazy to see the amount of water in such a short amount of time.  It became our fun tradition to dance and play in the warm rainstorms.

While playing outside, we noticed several teeny frogs trying to get out of the puddles.  Daxton and Dallas had a blast catching them and watching them jump out of their hands.

Basically, the rainy season is a toddler boy's dream!

Some other fun highlights from May...
playing in the backyard, eating yummy fruit, practicing colors, letters, and numbers on the iPad and folder games, and my favorite...snuggling and holding hands while watching Disney Junior.  I love my little buddy!

We also had many days full of art projects and painting murals.  There's not much cuter than a toddler painting in just a diaper.

And of course the best way to clean off all that paint...
more fun with the water table!

We also met up with good friends at the beach.
Daxton and Dean are very similar and it was pretty funny to watch them share toys and play together.  I love their matching curls and chunky cheeks.  The beach is always more fun with friends!
By the end of May, Daxton was getting pretty annoyed with his long locks.  He kept pulling at the hair above his ears and neck.  I even had to give him one of my headbands to keep him from pulling his hair out!

So we decided it was time for daddy to do the biannual shave of the golden locks.  We had also just finished painting outside, thus the colorful chubby belly.  It was pretty sad to watch those beautiful curls fall to the floor, but he was so much happier when daddy was finished.

The next day, we decided to explore Tree Tops park as a family.  It was fun to have daddy with us, which Daxton took full advantage of whenever he got too tired to walk on his own.  There were several fun walking paths through the park, but looking down some of them I was a bit too nervous to go exploring.  I mean if you can look down a path and count SEVERAL large spiders along the way, it screams to me like I shouldn't be exploring there.  Not to mention the signs for alligators and spiders...
parks are very different here in Florida then I'm used to.

We found a really fun gazebo that looked out over the lake.  We were super excited to find all sorts of turtles and fish.  Too bad we didn't bring any food for them.  We loved watching how excited Daxton got noticing all the wildlife around him.

That's a pretty cute little man we got there...
with or without the curls!

A few more fun happenings in May...
Daxton found a new favorite spot while watching his shows...

The escape will be inevitable soon...

Goofing off with Daddy is the best!

It's a pretty amazing thing watching your baby grow to be a silly toddler.  He loves rocks, sticks, cars, and walks with daddy.
May was a pretty great month!

Thursday, September 4, 2014

Bryan's Family Visits: Saying Goodbye with Flour

On Bryan's last day visiting they wanted to go to the beach one more time before their flight took off in the afternoon.  But after the crazy few days we had had, Daxton and I decided to stay home in the morning.  I pulled out one of his flour sensory buckets from his birthday in March.  We had a lot of left over flour and had been slowly using it for different learning activities.  This time I hid several ocean animals within the tub.  Everytime he would find one, he'd squeal with delight.  We practiced our colors and also names of each animal.  He sorted them by colors and then later by size.  I also tried to introduce counting them as he pulled them out, but he was not too interested in counting.  I found some fun collapsable colorful measuring cups for him to dig with.  It was the perfect way to spend our morning until the cousins got back from the beach.

Since the girls were already in their swimsuits, they immediately jumped in on the fun.  They helped Daxton find all of his sea animals and had fun building flour castles.
It was so much fun to watch them interact, create, and play with each other.  I sure love these kiddos and love the way they played with Daxton!

When we were cleaning up the flour, some got into Daxton's eye.  It was so much easier to clean off his face than sand!

Bryan came out to help with the clean up, which was pretty easy.  The girls scooped the extra flour back into the tub and then they used the hose to spray off whatever was left.  The flour mixing with water was pretty slippery so the girls got a kick out of pretending they were skating across the brick.  Daxton got a kick out of spraying the girls with the hose again!

After all the flour was cleaned up, everyone went inside for showers and packing.  It was a pretty sad goodbye for this little man below.  He kept calling out for his "fends" and for weeks after would ask for Mack and Sade.
I wish I could put into words how wonderful it was to have them stay with us for a few days.  It was so good to be with family and see Daxton interact with his cousins.  We loved being able to show them some of the beauties around our area, but mostly we just loved being with them.  We have the most amazing family.  We truly feel blessed!

Bryan's Family Visits: Lion Country Safari

After our amazing morning at Butterfly World, we were super excited to drive up to Lion Country Safari for an afternoon with the animals.  Dallas was a sweetheart and took half the day off so he could spend it with all of us.  It's always more fun with daddy around!  Once we got up to the Drive-through safari park, Dallas, Daxton, and I hopped in Bryan's minivan so we could all do the tour together.  The kids had a blast calling out the different animals they saw.  They all also had fun jumping around the car without their seatbelts on!  Since your only allowed to drive between 5-10 mph children are not expected to stay in their seats.  Daxton and Sadie both loved jumping from the front to back and sitting on everyone's laps.  The three older kids had fun taking turns in the "trunk" of the minivan watching for animals out the back window.

Technically you're not supposed to roll down your window, but we broke the rules when no animals were around.  Sadie was a pretty great side seat driver, telling her daddy where to go and when to stop.

Bryan was a sweetheart to let Daxton sit on his lap, while pushing all the buttons and turning the wipers and blinkers on.

I love how many animals we always see at the Lion Country Safari.  Not only do they have several different varieties from all around the world, but they have such a high quantity that you are bound to see something new on each tour.  This time the water buffalo were super close to our car which the kids all loved.

I was holding Dax for a lot of the ride and ended up not taking too many of the animals, but we all loved watching the rhinos and zebra drink from their watering hole.  Lucky for them, they don't have to worry about lurking crocodiles in their habitat!

After the drive-through portion of the park, we all hopped out to explore the rest of the zoo.

We loved showing them all the different plant life that naturally grows in south florida.  It's so different than where we are all from!

They have several different little rides for the kids to go on, but almost all of them simply spin in a circle, which makes me SUPER sick.  Max was a trooper to go on the rides with Daxton over and over.  He's not only an awesome big brother, but an amazing cousin as well!

Best seat in the house!
Daxton sure loves his daddy and missed him greatly during busy season.  Look at those matching curls!

Daxton and I's favorite thing to do at Lion Country Safari is feeding the giraffes.  There is a large platform built where you can literally be face to face with these beautiful animals.  For a couple dollars we bought a bunch of lettuce and took turns feeding the giraffe out of our hands.  It's so crazy to me how long their tongues are!  Each of the kids had a lot of fun interacting with them.

I have to admit there were a lot of bittersweet moments while Bryan's family was in town visiting.  My heart melted watching how deeply Daxton loves his cousins and how well they love him in return, it brakes my heart a bit knowing we are so far away from family.  Even though we love it here in south Florida and know that we are supposed to be here, it's hard seeing family so rarely throughout the year.

After exploring most of the zoo, we headed to the splash pad and water slides.  We were all very hot from walking around and being in the sun, so the kids had a lot of fun cooling off.  Heather and Bryan were brave enough to go down the massive slides with their older kids, but Daxton wanted to stay mostly in the splash pad.  He had so much fun running in and out of the fountains.

Even though he was over two, we still had him dressed in his 18 month swimsuit, which was pretty cute to show off his "muscles."  We've realized that we swim so often that we need to just purchase  a couple more suits, but he didn't seem to mind the snug fit!

Sadie and Daxton had a lot of fun playing in and out of the fountains together.

On our way out of the park, the kids wanted to ride on the different rides one more time.  It was pretty cute to see them all in their dripping wet swimsuits, but it was the perfect way to dry off since all of us had forgotten towels.

We ended up eating at Panera Bread for dinner on our way home.  It was so funny to watch these two cuties interact!  So many giggles and hugs between the two of them.

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