Monday, February 29, 2016

Finn's New Room

Pep talk in the Penguin locker room

After a full day at the rink with one game and two practices among the three big boys, they came home and played street hockey in the driveway on a very rare mid 50 degree day in MN.

Quite a crew right there

Luke in his goalie gear with the side attack from Finn

Finn's new Big Boy Bed!!!

"oh mom, I really love it"
We had a big weekend of hockey, some nice weather, and a milestone for Finn.  In the eight years that we have lived here, I cannot recall a day in February without snow.  Until now, that is.  We hit a record breaking high of around 55 degrees over the weekend.  It was beautiful.  Sunny, warm (or at least felt warm since we are typically 50 degrees colder!), and beautiful.  We played outside all afternoon when we finished hockey for the day.  It was fun to get the bikes, scooters, and other outdoor toys out again.  Of course, this week its back to normal with temps in the teens and 20's, but hopefully spring isn't too far away.

As I mentioned last week, Finn has been asking about moving to a big boy bed.  We received Finn's crib from his godparents (same crib their son used) and the crib has had a few issues recently so it was time to move on to a bed.  Finn was so excited to put up his big boy bed.  He has been talking about his "new room" for a week now.  We inherited the cool bunkbeds from Mimi over the summer and I ordered a new quilt for Finn's beds last week.  Our plan is to paint the room at some point in the near future, but we have lots of painting to do in the new house so we will add his room to the list!  Thus far, Finn has done well with the transition to his new bed.  He has been sleeping in his new bed without any issues and waited for us to go get him the next morning.  Let the potty training begin....but not until summer!  

Monday, February 22, 2016

100 Days Smarter

Aiden celebrated his 100th day of school
Luke had his chance to be goalie at their hockey game on Sunday afternoon
Liam was goalie on Saturday afternoon

Sleeping Finn.  He is rarely ever so quiet.

Sleeping in Aiden's big boys bed for the first time!

Football with Finn at the Dome

Markers with Finn 

Liam is 100 days smarter and has a 100 dollar bill
We celebrated our 100th day of school this week.  Luke and Liam both took 100 objects to share at school.  Liam picked marshmallows and Luke picked goldfish.  It was a great week to celebrate 100 days of school and nearing closer to spring break and summer because it feels like the weather changed overnight.  I am hopeful for an early spring, but I know all too well that the weather in MN could change back to winter overnight as well.  We could still get several big snowfalls, but we seem to be heading in the right direction for spring right now.  We will enjoy the warmer temps while we can.  Liam came in from school one day and said very excitedly, "Mom, I think its changing to summer pretty soon!  See, look outside...AND I heard three birds!"

Sad to say, but I think we are nearing the end of having a baby bed in our house.  We have had a crib in our house for nearly 8 years straight.  Shortly after Aiden's third birthday, we had a period of time (i.e. less than 6 months) before Finn was born when Aiden was in a big boy bed and we took the crib down for a few months.  Last week at nap time while his brothers were all at school, Finn asked if he could sleep in Aiden's room.  We discussed having to stay in Aiden's bed and not getting out until Mommy comes to get you, etc...I really wasn't sure how he would do, but he did great.  He slept in his crib until I woke him to pick up Aiden at school.

Liam and Luke both enjoyed the opportunity to be goalie for their hockey team over the weekend.  The goalie equipment is passed around during the hockey season so that each child has a chance to be goalie for either a game or practice.  Liam was technically goalie at practice and Luke was goalie at the actual game.  This was a debate for them because originally Liam was supposed to be goalie for the game.  Luke, however, is really the better one for goalie.  He's big for one thing and he is pretty good in the goal.  Liam has a hard time wearing the goalie equipment and he is a better skater than Luke so it makes more sense for him to be skating than to be a goalie.  We left it up to them and they decided (appropriately) for Luke to handle the game and Liam would take the practice.  Good choice!

Monday, February 15, 2016

Our long weekend

"I just took a shower with Luke and Liam all by myself RIGHT NOW!"  Finn apparently tried to jump in the shower with Luke and Liam when we sent them upstairs to start baths.

Fun glow ball party with our best twin friends, Jack and Charlie!

Tubing on our day off!

Finn's first time tubing

Getting ready to go down!

Here we go!
Night skating on the rink.  This was just for Finn.  The big boys skated while he was napping, but we all put on our boots (and Finn's skates) and we went out for a bit after dinner because Finn wanted to skate as well.
 We enjoyed a long weekend and an extra day off from school and work.  We enjoyed several hockey games and practices, a fun birthday party with our best friends, a day of tubing at a local park, and ice skating at the house.

This was Finn's first experience with tubing and he loved it.  He wanted to do everything on his own including try to pull his own tube.  He tried walking up the magic carpet on the hill and then wanted to ride down the hill again and again.  We were fortunate in that the weather was cold enough for the snow to be decent, but warm enough that we didn't freeze and it wasn't windy.  This was especially nice because Finn enjoys taking off his hat and gloves several times per hour.  He cried when we left because he really thought we should try snowboarding next.

We were all tired by the end of the weekend, but we made some fun memories!

Monday, February 8, 2016

Skating with the Big Boys

As soon as Finn sees the snowflakes falling, he wants to shovel.  Never mind that it makes more sense to shovel AFTER it stops snowing!  So, here we are in this picture shoveling in a snowstorm.

Up close to the action
Rooting for the gophers

Minnesota Gopher Hockey game with our buddy Jack on the far left

Mariucci Arena

That's A LOT of ice cream!
Aiden and his buddy Mark on the bench before they skated
Getting to meet the high school hockey players and give a fist bump before the game
Future Star-Aiden Carrithers
Aiden and his Mite One teammates getting ready to skate
National Anthem
Aiden's team is in the background watching warm ups

We had a big snow storm this week so there was lots of snow to play in at our house.  Not surprisingly, schools remained open and the boys were a bit disappointed.   Over the last 8 years that we have lived in MN, I can only remember seeing the schools close once due to snow and three times due to dangerously cold windchills of like -50 degrees.  I think we have a better chance of missing school due to super cold temperatures than snow accumulation since MN is relatively efficient at clearing the roads.

The boys had the awesome opportunity to see a Gopher hockey game over the weekend.  A very generous neighbor offered us their hockey seats for Saturday night.  Their daughter has been doing some babysitting for us and the boys love her.  They had nearly front row seats right behind the net so they got to see a lot of action and had an awesome time.

Lastly, I know I have said this before, but Minnesota does a fantastic job promoting the sport of hockey and developing kids at a young age to play the sport.  The boys really admire the older kids (aka "the BIG BOYS") who play hockey.  Aiden's team of kindergarteners recently had the opportunity to skate with the high school kids in the city where we live.  These kids look gigantic compared to Aiden and his teammates.  They were announced with the team and even got to play a small game at intermission.  Aiden thought it was so cool and talked about it all night.  He gave us the play by play of the game including when he saved a puck from going out of bounds and exactly which teammates scored, etc...Definitely was a memorable experience for Aiden!

Monday, February 1, 2016

Our Hockey weekend

Ice cream with boys on a day off from school.  
Our nephew, Jacob Barnes (hockey uniform) with his family.  Ann (left) is John's older sister with  her husband Dan and daughters Ella and Caitlin 

John and his godson Jacob
Back at home...Aiden and his buddy Keaton having lunch between hockey games.  We probably did a little too much eating out in between hockey games while John was out of town!

Finn entertaining himself with Elmo at hockey game #2

Finn at the carwash.  Apparently too loud!

It was a weekend full of hockey for all of us even though we were in different areas.  John travelled home to Cincinnati to spend the weekend with his family and to see his godson Jacob play in his final hockey games as a senior.  John had a great time visiting with everyone and really enjoyed getting to see Jacob play and celebrate his senior season.  Congrats to Jacob!  We are all so proud of you and can't wait to see you grow in this next chapter of your life.

Back in Minnesota, we survived with the generous help of many friends.  When you have hockey games at different places at the same times plus a two year old who really needs to nap, it is nice to have a village of people to help.  We traded off rides with friends, hired a babysitter for one of the days for Finn, and did our best to manage without John's help for the weekend.  At one point when I was taking Aiden to meet his carpool to another hockey rink (we were meeting at the rink where Luke and Liam were playing), I sent Luke and Liam to the locker room to begin dressing for their game.  I told them I would return shortly to tie skates and fasten helmets, but they were on their own to get all the pads on.  When I returned shortly before the game, I found a good friend on the floor tying skates for me without even having to be asked.  Luke was apparently looking for me and she went to the locker room to help out.  Thank you friends, you mean so much to the boys and myself!