Monthly Archives: April 2016

Avery Turns Nine!

Avery turned nine this March. It makes me pretty sentimental because this is half-way to eighteen. Sniff. It doesn’t seem like it’s been very long, but in another nine years, he will be applying to colleges. These really are the tween years. He is still so much a little kid in our eyes, but there are are some pretty significant milestones coming up in the not-too-distant future. Our little boy is growing up fast! I am trying to enjoy the days when his voice is high, he thinks girls have cooties, and he is shorter than me while I still can.

Avery is an awesome nine-year-old, and we feel lucky to be his parents. I’d say he fits into the firstborn stereotype pretty well. He is serious, cooperative, a great student, and seems to really want to please us and live up to our expectations. He talks nearly non-stop at home, and can be quite goofy, but he is very quiet at school and in public. He can be moody at times, and we’ve noticed a bit more sass as the years progress, but overall, he’s a really good kid. He loves to read, and blows through books faster than we can download them. He puts up with piano, although I know most days he would throw in the towel if we let him. He enjoys chess, basketball, and especially parkour. Did I mention he likes video games? He will literally play until he gets sick if we let him.

Avery would like to be an inventor, software engineer or video game developer when he grows up. He’s also mentioned wanting to be a YouTuber who makes Minecraft tutorials (please, no). At this point Mom and Dad wonder if he has a future in dentistry. He’s always had an interest in it, and to date he’s pulled at least four of his own teeth – and that’s my conservative guess. Twice this month he’s woken up with a loose tooth, and then that evening about an hour after we put him to bed, he gleefully bounces down the stairs, “look, I pulled my tooth out!” I can’t believe he does this.

We celebrated Avery’s birthday with a party at Adventure bowl. It’s a small bowling alley that is adjoined with a pizza place that according to Avery, has the best pizza in the whole wide world. He and his friends had a great time together. Happy birthday Avery. We love you!
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Hamza, Avery & MichaelDSC_3254

I was touched by how considerate Avery was with his time during the party. He wanted to switch aisles periodically so he could bowl with all of his friends, and his brothers too. DSC_3256 DSC_3258

Sebastian & Kieron playing video gamesDSC_3261

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There was also air hockey and video gamesIMG_8994

Little boys love taking pics like this

Avery on his last night as an eight-year-old

Kieron and Silas making Avery’s card

Kieron picked out this Minecraft pickaxe for Avery
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And Silas picked out Clue

Avery is at the age now where this is what he really likes. He enjoys being able to buy things for himself.

Building a Lego Minecraft set he received with Kieron

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Mr. & Mrs. Halverstadt

Jonathan and I flew to San Francisco in mid-April for Ashleigh and Mark’s wedding. They made it official in an intimate ceremony at City Hall. Afterwards, we enjoyed a delicious dinner and headed to Sonoma for a weekend full of eating and drinking. We had a great time and enjoyed getting to know Ashleigh and Mark’s college and PCT friends.

Here are a few pictures we took while we were there. Since we were enjoying the day, and they hired a photographer, we realized we didn’t actually get ANY pictures of the two of them on their wedding day.

Congratulations Ashleigh and Mark. We wish you much happiness in the years ahead!


Auntie Ish flew out from New Zealand for the special occasion


En route to City Hall

Ashleigh, Natalie, Jenny & Ish
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Wedding reception/dinner at Boulevard Restaurant
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Wine tasting in Sonoma

Mark outdid himself and prepared the majority of the meals while we were in Sonoma.
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On our last day there, we drove to Palo Alto to see the neighborhood Jonathan lived in as a child. Here he is in front of his old house. It has been pretty much completely redone since he lived there though, so the garage is on the other side, and it looks much different.

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Silas is Four!

Birthday season in our house kicked off with Silas’ 4th on March 1st. What can I say about our littlest prince? He is so incredibly sweet! He is a cheerful, agreeable, lovable, optimistic little boy. He is loud, boisterous, flirtatious, and confident. He loves doing puzzles, mazes, practicing writing, building legos, playing with cars, and making people laugh. He never meets a stranger, isn’t afraid to ask questions, and likes trying new things.

A few cute things Silas does these days: 1. He likes to sing. His favorite song to belt out is “Stitches”, by Shawn Mendes, specifically the chorus, “I’m without your kisses. I’ll be needing stitches.” He loves the reaction this gets, and he sings it all the time, which means the song is usually stuck in my head. 2. He says “what?” after almost everything we say. When Grammy was visiting she noted that we were constantly repeating ourselves. Since then we’ve been working on this with him, but he had us pretty well trained. Kieron and Avery are so cute, they’ll just kind of shake their heads and roll their eyes when he does this, as if to say, “there he goes again.” 3. Silas gestures with his hands a lot. For instance, he’ll put his finger up in the air and say “wait, I have an idea…” then he’ll move his hand to his chin and explain, “why don’t we…” 4. He loves saying hi to animals. When we’re out on walks, and we approach a person with a dog, he’ll yell out, “can I please pet your dog!?” 5. He likes rearranging furniture. I know he learned this from me. We get into a bit of trouble together. But he actually has a good eye for it. 🙂 6. He is super excited to be a big brother. He talks about Layla a lot and tells nearly everyone we see that he is going to have a baby sister. He asks all sorts of questions, and wants to know how to operate all the baby equipment. He’s excited to sing to her and help care for her.

Potential careers we envision for him at this point: Interior decorator, vet, perhaps doctor. He is not squeamish, and likes to watch us get shots and have our blood drawn. He’s even asked to be present for his sister’s delivery!

Speaking of doctors, at his recent checkup, Silas came in 50% for height and 47% for weight, so he is right there in the middle. Happy birthday little guy. We love you!

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Birthday morning!






For dinner we went to Zeek’s Pizza, per Silas’ request. Then we came home for cupcakes.
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We celebrated Silas’ birthday at Kidz Bounce the Friday following his birthday.
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With Bode

With Charlotte
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After the kids were worn out from bouncing, we came back to the house for birthday festivities.



Silas and Charlotte



Time for cake!
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At the doctor’s office

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