Birthday boy…

Cannon Birthday

Cannon had a birthday party Friday night with his friends, where we sang happy birthday and in his mind, he turned four years old.

This morning, Cannon woke up to the kitchen decorated and his birthday bucket on the table. He was so excited to be 5. In fact he was adamant that he was 5 years old. I see his logic. On Friday, he had  birthday and turned 4. Today he had another birthday and turned 5. No amount of talking could convince him otherwise until we told him his friends were only four, so he wouldn’t be in the same class with them if he was 5. He was then okay with staying four for another year. Thank heavens.

Cannon Birthday

Cannon Birthday

He came into this world with a head full of dark hair and since day one it’s had  mind of his own. That cute cowlick in the front of this picture has turned into a nightmare and I’m convinced he’s going to deal with this cowlick his whole life!

Cannon is a ray of sunshine. He smiles when he talks and he loves to retell stories over and over and over again. (And his retelling of the story is always 10 times better than the story ever was originally!) He loves his older sister and they share a special bond. He waits to eat breakfast with her most mornings. He loves to be tucked in and asks for three songs. Then tells you what three songs they should be. And then asks what we’re having for breakfast in the morning. He’s predictable! He is a pleasant toddler and for that I am grateful!

Happy Birthday Cannon boy.

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Wide open weekend…

Hunter doesn’t have a soccer game this weekend. ASU is playing away. And we’ve planted our winter grass and it’s too early to cut it. Which ultimately means our Saturday is looking wide open. Although we have a lot on the horizon I need to prepare for: Costumes, multiple birthdays and friend parties. Naturally, I’ve already mentally mapped out the day and I’m booked solid – I just can’t tell Steve that or else he gets overwhelmed. 🙂

Before I move on to more birthdays – Hunter finally cashed in on his birthday experience gift with some teammates from his soccer team. Phoenix is bidding for an MLS team and they’ve built a temporary stadium close to us to house the club team. We realized a couple weeks ago, although Hunter is playing soccer (his first season) he has never actually seen a game – professional or not. It was good for him to see what soccer is supposed to look like – as opposed to his 7 vs 7 league he’s playing in now.

Steve said he was pleasantly surprised with the stadium, fans and experience. The crowd can make or break a game and they made it. A while back we attended a football game for the cardinals and the fans were rough and vulgar. Not quite the family friendly environment we’d hoped for and we haven’t been back.

Phoenix rising was different. If the season wasn’t over we’d be attending more games – we’ll keep an eye out for them next year.

 

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Late night game…

We took the whole family to the ASU game last weekend. We typically leave the younger two at home, but our friends had given us some extra tickets so we figured we’d take the whole crew. Steve convinced me it would be a quick game – and we could leave at half-time. ASU has been playing poorly and we were playing the #5 ranked team, it was bound to be a blow out.

But it wasn’t. In fact, it was an amazing game. We were ahead the entire game and we kept looking at each other wondering what team had shown up to play because they looked far better than the team we were used to seeing on the field! We were all out past our bedtime.

Funny story from the night. Hallie and Hunter both brought friends with them and I had given them all candy before we left the house so they’d have a treat to munch on throughout the game. During the first quarter, Hallie emptied her pocket and put her candy on the bench between her and her friend.

Shortly after – she came to me and told me the boy behind her had stolen her candy. I questioned the legitimacy of her story. But she was convinced and as further evidence she could see her candy wrapper was under his seat with a few candies spilled out. (I was having flashbacks to the Cookie Thief poem! If you haven’t read this, take a look!)

She was bummed and I was shocked. Who does that?? She was right there – just looking the other way when it happened. She asked if I would say something. I hesitated bringing it up because in all reality – the candy was gone and he would ultimately deny doing it. But as I sat there the thought stirred within me and I realized I wanted Hallie to know it was okay to stand up for herself and confront him and I wanted to show her how to do it in a kind way. Not only that – as a parent, if someone saw my kid steal something, I would hope they would kindly inform me of the incident. So with Hallie by my side I approached the kid with his dad by his side.

“Hey, is there any chance you took candy from the bench in front of you?”

Immediately the dad leans forward, “What are you accusing my son of?”

“I’m sorry – My daughter just said she saw him take her candy, I’m just trying to figure out what happened.”

“He wouldn’t do that – these are stellar boys (there was several boys there with the dad), I’m sorry you thought he took the candy.”

(Hesitantly) “I know it sounds bad, but I can actually see the wrapper under the seat still.”

The dad starts to become less defensive and starts asking the row of boys if anyone took the candy. The one son points out that they had switched seats after the first quarter and his youngest son had been sitting in the seat of question. He calls his youngest son down (just a year younger than Hallie) and asks if he took the candy and guilt washed over his face as he quickly denied the allegations. He then claimed he found candy on another bench that he took. His dad continued the interrogation until it came out that he indeed took the candy. Immediately, apologies started flooding from his mouth. He was determined to replace the candy. (which was not necessary at all – but Hallie did appreciate it!)

He then states that he recognizes us and come to realize he did know of us – he actually knows Steve’s sister really well and lives in their neighborhood. And we found several more connections which led to a fun 15 minute conversation of connections we had. The world is pretty small. I made it back to my seat at the end of halftime and find Steve laughing with our friends. He said he knows few people who can call out a candy stealer and make a new friend all in the same conversation!

 

 

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Tuesday thoughts…

Steve and I went to parent teacher conferences for all the kids today. I love that they arrange all of our kids conferences in a single block, which I’m sure is a scheduling nightmare, but it makes it easier on the parents.

I actually enjoy going to these conferences. I enjoy hearing what teachers have to say about my kids. I know my kids. I know their strengths and I know they’re weaknesses. I know what frustrates them as well as what motivates them. I know what subjects they enjoy and which ones they would leave on the table if there was an option.

And when I walked out of conferences today, I realized their teachers knew the same things. They really knew my children and I could tell they genuinely loved my children in the way every parent wishes a teacher cared for their child in the classroom.

They knew that Bennett prefers to stand while doing his work – but letting him do so keeps him on task.

They knew that Hunter is as bright as can be, but needs more discipline in his homework.

They knew that Hallie is a perfectionist and is willing to do extra credit on tests when she doesn’t need to.

What a reassurance it is to send my kids to these classes every day. We have excellent teachers and I count my lucky stars for those that are dedicated to their teaching.

 

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