Adventures In Larsonland

Adventures In Larsonland

Saturday, January 7, 2017

Benjamin is FIVE!

Dear Benjamin Willys,

Today you are FIVE!
WHAT?

You...

...love all things Star Wars. You've watched all the movies (except for the last two new ones) and love talking about them with dad.
...LOVE sports. As in, you will sit down and watch any sport on TV and cheer for any team you've arbitrarily chosen. You cheer, ask questions about rules, and get so excited about any type of sport. You always play soccer and football around the house (even by yourself) and LOVE your Colorado Buffaloes and Denver Broncos.
...can read! You started reading almost a year ago but now can just about get through whole (beginner) books, and it's so cool watching you do it. You don't like to let people see you reading, but we know that you love doing it, especially when we see it opening your world in so many ways!
...have gotten a little bit of an "edge" the past few months. You're still a sweet and kind boy, but you're definitely not the same boy as a year ago in some ways! Sometimes it's hard to see you growing out of your "baby" self and turning into a little boy with opinions and attitude all your own, but it's also a blast to watch too.
...play games and cards (you love Go Fish, Protect the Pridelands, and lots of other games)
...love your sister, even though you also love terrorizing her. I suppose that's how a lot of siblings work, huh? But at least at the end of the day I know you would do anything for her. <3 nbsp="" p="">...love watching shows like Paw Patrol and Nature Cat (and other shows that I don't know the names of); and you love watching Bubble Guppies and Little Einstein's with your sister when she's getting her treatment.
...love to learn about things and how they work. It's so fun watching you ask questions (and it's also occasionally obnoxious - you'll understand when you have kids) ;)
...love to play with trucks.
...love playing tag. It's just about your favorite thing to do at school during recess!
...finally taught yourself how to pump so you can swing all by yourself! (A big day for mom and dad) ;)
...told me that you're going to CU when you're in college, so that's awesome ;) (But I told you that we'd love for you to go somewhere really fun out East so we could come visit all the time. Hehe)
...will be in Kindergarten next year!! WHAT?!

We're so thankful that five years ago you made our family bigger and even more full of love. You made me a mama, and that's a special piece of my heart that you'll always have! I love watching you and your sister become the very best of friends. And most of all, I just LOVE you. You are so so loved. I hope you use your big brain and heart to do good and kind things in the world!


Happy birthday big boy!
Love,
Mom & Dad

Throwback to newborn Benjamin:




Thursday, December 29, 2016

The Trip To Washington, DC (4 months ago)

Wow, I can't believe it's been 4 months since we took our amazing trip to Washington, DC for Bryan's wedding. We packed as much as we could into 6 days, and we all had a blast. One of my favorite trips of recent memory! To be able to show the kids around our favorite city, the place we met, our favorite old spots... it was just a dream come true. We got to spend time with cousins and old friends, we got to explore and play, it was just amazing.

Auntie Emma was kind enough to brave joining us for most of the trip. She served as Aunt/Nanny-extraordinaire, and we are SO thankful she could help us make the most of the trip. We were able to do kid and adult things, and it made for an excellent family vacation. Though now I'm not sure how we'll ever do vacations without her!!

Here's a picture documentary of the trip. We stayed at our cousins' place in Virginia and drove into the city every day. But we did ride the Metro a few times to make sure Benjamin could get that experience under his belt. He LOVED it, of course. The wedding was AMAZING (despite it being almost 100 degrees, yikes!). The night was beautiful and Benjamin was a terrific (and adorable) ring-bearer. I wish we could do it all over again!

Waiting for our train to DIA:


 We packed a lot... Eek.

 Then our flight was DELAYED. FOR HOURS. That is not a fun predicament with two small children...



 Miraculously Avery slept on the flight... I don't know that we'll ever see that again!



It was a way-too-long travel day, so I forgot to snap pics, but we had a blast eating dinner with the Glassers and watching the kids play together. Penny and Owen were so kind to share all their toys and play with their Colorado cousins!

Off to some monuments!










Standing where mom and dad got engaged in 2008! What a special moment to tell the kids about!



Lunch at Old Ebbitt, a standby for our visits these days...





So proud to show Benjamin the White House, the home of the only President he's ever known, an amazing African-American man who wasn't perfect as a President, but is a good man who our country can be proud of!


Stopped by the Capitol to visit an old coworker, and she had one of her interns take us through the Capitol to show the kids. It was SO special getting to show them where mom worked!






And I ran into an old friend/coworker in the Capitol! What a small world, right?!

Benjamin LOVED the underground train from the Senate side to the Capitol.



My kids roaming the halls of the Senate buildings. Blows my mind. :)




No one was tired. At all.

That night was a pre-wedding cocktail event on the rooftops of one of the buildings that Uncle Bryan developed. The kids were so excited to see him, and Avery gave him a two minute hug. :)



Loved seeing old friends!







Matt and I went back to Michael's rooftop for some long and late-night conversations. We also watched some campaign YouTube videos about a hundred times. I won't mention which.

Next morning we visited the Air & Space Museum at Dulles. Matt and I had never been, so it was so fun to experience it with the kids! Some Glasser cousins met us there too!!













It's a really incredible museum!







Again, no tiredness anywhere...

That night was the rehearsal and rehearsal dinner in DuPont Circle. We got all prettied up and had a great time!



















The morning of the wedding I headed to Bryan's house to get ready and have some brunch with his friends. Wedding day was here! We told funny stories about Bryan and shared lots of laughs :)








Off to pictures!

Did I mention yet that it was 100 degrees!?! Ohmygosh, I was dying. My face was melting off and I felt like we were walking in a swamp. But I trudged through it, only for B of course!

First, some of the real wedding photos:













































I LOVE this picture. So much joy!!!



















































Giving my toast. I was definitely nervous but made it through :)  I had many wonderful things to say about these two. So that part was easy.









We all danced a LOT. 






Dr. Erin came by at the end so we could catch up while she was in town briefly. So glad she could come dance for a bit with us!










The afterparty was at the Diner. Of course! It was a blast!








 Time to say farewell to Uncle Bryan and Uncle Matt. What an amazing wedding week it had been!!

We made it to a bbq in Maryland with some of Matt's friends, and it was pouring rain like CRAZY so we were all stuck inside. I forgot to take adult pictures, but there were a LOT of kids :)


The next morning, we went to Georgetown to run through some splashpads and grab drinks on the water. It was a beautiful morning!






Meeting Carly and Michael for lunch at Union Station:



Grabbing a drink at the old Finns (then Molly Malones, but I hear it's now Finn MacCools again!):

Then metroing up to Bethesda to have dinner with an old friend and to meet her husband and baby!









Benjamin LOVED riding on the metro!



And since it was our last night, we took a late night trip to a few more memorials, because who knows when we'll be back (insert tears):



SO glad we made the time for these.















And with that, we cleaned up the Glasser house they were so kind enough to let us use, and headed home. It was a phenomenal trip. One of the best. WE LOVE YOU DC.