Wednesday, May 7, 2014

Happy Birthday, Brack!

My baby turned nine on Sunday.  I'm not quite sure how or when it happened, but he grew up.  I had nothing to do with it.  It happened, quite frankly, against my will.  But, that's what kids do.  Grow.  At least he is growing up into a fine young gentleman!  He is a mama's boy, and this mama, is so proud he's mine!
Here's what he looks like to most people...
But THIS is the Brack we know and love!

Isn't he awesome?!
In honor of our little man, we hosted a birthday party last Saturday afternoon.  Brack loves, Loves, LOVES frogs, so I found a cute little frog invitation on Etsy and had it printed at my local print shop.  We were planning for an outside party, plus the creek in the front pasture is full of tadpoles and baby frogs, so it seemed the perfect choice.  (Said tadpoles now live in a tub full of pond water on my deck.  Don't ask.)
We had family and friends from church, homeschool co-op, and swim team.  The weather was absolutely perfect!  The kids began playing immediately, in fact, some didn't make it to the parking area...they demanded to be let out by the front pasture swing!  Since it was late in the afternoon, and it is such a long drive, I decided to serve light finger foods.  Brack picked his favorites Rotel dip (without the Rotel, of course) and lemonade pie.  (Have I ever told you about my kids who, after I took all three Wilton cake decorating classes, decided they don't like cake?)  I supplemented with party pizzas, BLT dip, chicken cheese ball and crudité.  Check back later this week for recipes.
After the kids played and we ate (OK, mainly the adults ate.  Like kids are really gonna slow down long enough...), we headed back outside for what has become a tradition at Brack's birthday parties - a piñata.  Usually I have one made to match the theme.  (I know that sounds really expensive, but there are people on Ebay and Etsy who make them for about $30.  They're $20 at Party City!)  As I mentioned, our theme this year was frogs, and Brack could not, would not mutilate a frog...even for we went with a colorful present-shaped piñata.  It was huge!  I think I spent more on the candy than I did on the rest of the food.
After much experience (and several near accidents), we have developed the perfect piñata protocol.  Everyone lines up smallest to biggest.  Brack gets the first hit, then passes the stick to the next person.  Everyone gets a hit.  If it hasn't busted yet, we go 'round again.  As they get older, it's going faster than it used to.  Gerald had to rehang it half-way through the line this year!  I give everyone brown paper sacks with their names already written on them.  DIY party favors!  How smart am I?!
Before Gerald hoisted the piñata...

And after...Notice how he took several steps back?!
Brack's friends know him so well.  He got lots of nice gifts including a couple of new Lego sets and a Nerf Super Blaster (no Buddy, it won't squirt water without batteries and Mama is slap out of AA's...and so is Walmart!).  My normally shy little boy held court as he tore into his presents!  (Hand written thank you notes are on the To Do list for this week.  Good manners are for boys, too!)
The day was full of family, friends and fun!
Cousins and besties...Jewell, Mary Reagan and Ann Welch.
The puppies are never far from the action!

The mad dash for candy...
Enjoying cool, lemonade pie.
After a hard day of playing, maybe it wasn't such a bad idea after all!
 So - I'll wrap it up with a few of my favorite pics of my favorite boy...
To borrow an original rhyme from my mother-in-law...
I love you little,
I love you big.
I love you like my little pig.
Happy 9th Birthday, Brack!  We love you!
I'm so glad you stopped by my neck of the woods!
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