John and Dana

and our life with the munchkins!

Gavin’s Dr. Seuss Birthday Party

Pictures Pictures Pictures! John did a wonderful grabbing shots of the entire day. We are missing some decor shots, but I drop them onto the blog from my phone asap.

Edit: Here are the photos from my phone πŸ™‚

Front Door with covers from Seuss books (I bought a bulletin board set off of Amazon, it had most of the book covers and characters)

Back door!

I downloaded a Seuss font and typed up our favorite sayings/quotes and said which books they were from. I also found stickers and fun foamy stickers at Michaels on clearance! Score!

I had these frames on the tables outside and had the Seuss books open on the tables!

We had a wonderful time celebrating Gavin’s 3rd birthday on Saturday! The weather was beautiful until about 5:30 when it dropped 20 degrees and a nice wind picked up, but most of our friends and family were troopers πŸ˜‰

Our Seuss-Inspired Menu:

Thing One and Thing Two BBQ- pulled pork (with bbq sauce on the side for people to choose from, Sticky Fingers of course)

Hop on Pop Chicken (i was stretching on that one…)

Green Eggs and Ham

Schlott’s Knotts- rolls

Yot in a Pot- baked beans

Poodles Eating Noodles- pasta salad

Prairie of Prax- coleslaw

Who Hash- potato salad

Yink Pink Ink Drink- pink lemonade

Moose Juice and Goose Juice- Moose drool beer and Goose Island 312

Ok. Photos. Here we go!

Gavin’s sentiment was “can I just go jump in the bounce house now?” I made sure John got photos BEFORE they ate cheese popcorn and had yink pink ink drink. Β I bought the ties and heart from an etsy store and ironed them onto Target shirts. Cheap and cute!

Bounce house fun! Thank you Foleys for letting us borrow it for the day!

I feel like I never get photos with anyone. Well I made John take this one. Prior to this we were making stupid faces without each other knowing it, John had to bring us back down to earth. We are idiots πŸ˜‰

Opening his very own drum set (just like Daddy) from Phil and Shannon. I’ll make sure when they come over next time to bring this out JUST for their enjoyment.

Everyone enjoying the drums.

Oh Miss Jen, you have patience of a saint!

Gavin’s Seuss Cake, Deerfields Bakery rocked it again!

It stayed lit long enough for G to blow it out! Make a wish Buddy! (and try to not stick your entire hand in the cake this year)

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Dr. Seuss Party Prep

Well after months of pinning loads of fun things, we are one day away from Gavin’s birthday party! We decided on a Dr. Seuss theme because he really didn’t have any opinion on what he wanted. So it was Mama’s choice πŸ™‚ Of course I’m already thinking about Ian’s monster truck birthday. Oh boy, one day at a time now Mama.

Here are a few pics:

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Our stack of Dr. Seuss we’ve had since Kae was a baby.

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I’m crazy. Blue fish. Warren Beta Fish, our new family pet. I love the name, John thinks I’m totally insane. Those of you who know me well know that that statement ‘Dana is batshit crazy’ is true.

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Goodie boxes!

And that’s it for now, I have a few other tricks up my sleeve but haven’t taken any pictures yet. And I now leave you with my favorite Seuss quote:

From there to here,
from here to there,
funny things are everywhere!

Can’t wait to celebrate this wonderful little boy! Can’t believe he’s THREE! Wee!

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Gavin is 3!!!

My baby is officially three! We spent this morning at Randall Oaks petting zoo with Ian’s preschool class.

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Please forgive the camera phone pictures, trying to get used to my Mothers Day iPhone from John and the kids! Does Siri intimidate anyone else?? No?? I’m just crazy?? πŸ™‚ K!

I will post more pictures throughout the day!

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A Very Hungry Caterpillar Party

Well it was such a fun day, we all needed a day to recover from all the eating! Of course, since we were having a Very Hungry Party, we made sure to have lots of yummy foods for Gavin’s 2nd birthday! He is in love with bugs and will lay down on the driveway just to watch them. So when I pulled out The Very Hungry Caterpillar G instantly loved it and became quite attached to his BUG book. And of course, Ian loved it because he could sorta read along when we read it out loud daily. My parents took on hosting this time and it worked out perfectly. The weather was supposed to be rainy but the day turned out to be beautiful! Ok enough of me yapping….Here are the pics!

Our Very Hungry Cake! The woman who made our wedding cake and grooms cake made this fantastic AND delicious cake! She is so talented!

Butterflies that Ian helped me make. He was very proud of them.

Cookies

and…

More Cookies.

The kids goodie buckets with our favorite book!

Our happy little birthday boy.

Kiki hanging outside on the patio in the sunshine! Yay sunshine!!

Ian-man was was snacking with Dziadzia on the patio. I’m so glad we had the opportunity to hang outside! I’m totally ready for summer!

Jen and Jonathan brought over their bounce house for the kiddies to play in! It was a total hit!

Oh man. Birthday boy was a bit frazzled that he had to share. It was totally Jacksons turn but Gavin would not have it. Jack was a total trooper and let Gavin push him!

See!! All better!!

Cameron making a face?? Stinker!

Brayden was a total trooper too! He was totally mellow and he had plenty of hands to hold him so his mom and dad could get a break! Who DOESN’T love holding a baby!!?? πŸ™‚

Auntie Katie sure didn’t mind hanging with Brayden!

Gavin decided to take off running with his new truck and all the kids followed.

Oh boy, they are all going to be trouble!

Mr. Landon had a great time partying too! Yet again, lots of hands=let mommy relax a bit! Cutie!

Ian and Cam were having a blast at the end of the night. They just dug right in, no pun intended πŸ™‚

More pictures to come from dinner to cake!! Woo! Thank you to everyone who came out to have fun with us yesterday! It was definitely a memorable party!

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How Old Are You? NOT TWO

Oh yes. Gavin turned 2 and he doesn’t want to believe it! Any time we prompt him he says “not 2”. Sigh. Such is life.

He doesn’t like smiling at the camera anymore. So this is the best we got.Β 

He’s a big little man now! I can’t believe how quickly 2 years flew by and we have enjoyed those years with him so very much. He’s learning how to say a lot of words, and loving that he can now communicate and we understand what he’s saying!

We’ve been busy the past week prepping for his party and Ian (and Mac) have been a HUGE helper(s) when it comes to making decorations. The theme for Gavin’s party is all about the book The Very Hungry Caterpillar. The kid LOVES bugs.

Water colors are FUN, MOM! (Buddy man got his head shaved because he’s a general sweatbox in the summer)

The kid loves brown.

Ok. So I had a dream that I would get all creative and “Martha-like” in one day. So….. that dream bit my ass yesterday. I was going to make a caterpillar out of big poofy tissue paper poofs. Yeah. I threw it on the floor after about 3 seconds. Mac however LOVED it. Dude couldn’t get enough of the poof. As for the caterpillar, balloons will have to do πŸ˜‰ And I’m OK with that. I can cook. I can clean. I can plant a garden. I CAN NOT CRAFT. Acceptance is the first step right?

I’m now going to have to go back in time for a few posts just to get caught up with all the busy things going on in our lives this past month or so!


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Easter Weekend 2011

We had a fairly eventful weekend starting with a day off on Good Friday! John was home and the kids absolutely loved it! I’m boring, he’s not….I’m the mean one, he’s not….I see a pattern forming. Womp womp. Such is life. So the kiddos played games, played on the iPad (John got one from work the other week, the kids LOVE it), and watched a few tv shows on netflix in the morning. Then they went with Nana, Papa and Uncle Pat to the Rainforest Cafe and to get new shoes (for their Easter present).

Gavininator

EE

iPad time for Gavin

Game time for Kae and Ian. He LOVED playing this with his big sister. She was fairly patient with him.

Mac had a relaxing day on Kaelyn’s American Girl Doll bed. Kit and Martha (her dolls) were not pleased.

Holy Saturday was a bit of a blur. The kids went with my mom and brother to my Babcia and Dziadzias house in Niles to color easter eggs and go to the easter basket blessing. They had a blast and were completely exhausted by the time they came home. John and I spent the day shopping for our Easter dinner and cleaning for our guests! This was my first official hosting of a holiday and it honestly couldn’t have gone any smoother. I pre-made a bunch of stuff so that I would have more time to spend with family on Easter morning.

Easter table. It was fun to put together!

Easter Egg hunt at Babcia and Dziadzias Easter morning

Not really in focus but he was focused on getting his eggs. Uncle Steve helped him and cousin Matt helped Ian out.

Ian having a blast

Bunny Katie (my cousin) and Bunny Kaelyn

Dziadzia loves the easter egg hunt! He’s very helpful too! I just love this photo so much.

All done with the hunt so now it’s time to chow down on all the goodies.

Drippy nose, drippy chocolate= Gavin

Of course, can’t put the candy down at all. Must keep it near him at all times. The kids are finally coming down off of their sugar high. Finally.

We came home after breakfast and tried to get the kids to rest but that didn’t happen. So then began our second event of the day, Easter dinner with the Rorks and Cathonys. It was very nice to be home and with family. The kids got their hunt on AGAIN while I got dinner set on the table.

Papa was helping get the hard to reach eggs for the older 2.

He ran all over the yard.

Kae filled her basket (14 for each kid max) so she was helping Ian find his eggs. He was so excited!

AMeat Trifecta- Ham, Turkey AND Polish Sausage (fresh and smoked).

Because 1 9lb ham isn’t enough, we needed to make a whole turkey and 2 links of sausage. I blame my mother for my feeding people skills. The leftovers have been quite tasty. πŸ˜‰

Now I’m sure you are wondering why I put this picture up. Other than it being hilarious and blurry (sorry…). My cousin Collette (up front) and my lovely friend Katie (trying to grab the bouquet out from under Collette) both have/had things happen to them this weekend/week. Collette got ENGAGED on Saturday to the love of her life Jeff. And Katie is getting married this weekend to the love of her life Steve! I love them both dearly and am so happy for both of them! Can’t wait to celebrate with Katie/Steve this weekend and with Collette/Jeff AND another special couple whom want to remain incognito until all family is notifiedΒ in the next year! Woo!


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I know…I know…

Sigh. Can you say un-motivated?!

Plenty of things to update, not enough hours in the day. Well I’ve had my gallon of coffee this morning so my fingers are a bit jumpy and ready to type away furiously.

When we left off, Kaelyn just turned 7. Big girl, I know. She has been excelling in school, jumping reading levels in her reading group. She is reading at a high 2nd grade level and she is loving all the work that goes along with it. She really enjoys riding on her razor scooter and it’s been helping her balance A LOT. We will be riding our bike without training wheels in NO TIME. I know I know…we haven’t been the greatest teachers in the bike riding aspect but HEY she can read at nearly a 3rd grade level, BOOYA. They are also working on a money/coins unit in school so I think John and I will be starting chores and allowance with her. She will learn how to manage her time and money and get to buy fun things if she does what she needs to get done! Exciting! School is almost over (6 weeks…WHO’S COUNTING……….) and then we will be doing swimming lessons and possibly a summer camp or 2. Kaelyn has been getting a bit more emotional, not certain if it’s just her personality or the fact that she has been exhausted and still waking up at the butt crack of dawn to read. In any case, she’s been a bit snarky and moody (like her mama) and hasn’t been playing well with the boys (although Ian knows how to get under peoples skin…more on that LATER). So it’s been a bit of a struggle these past few days but having the kids playing outside has done wonderful things to their moods.

Now onto Ian. Ian Ian Ian. He’s a very cautious yet stubborn child these days. Terrific Threes anyone?! Geez, I forgot all about that (maybe pushed it out of my brain once Kaelyn passed this level). He is such a good natured kid but damn it, when he doesn’t get his way, he’s P-I-S-S-E-D. Which then results in a screaming match and a nice long time out. Sorry to anyone who walks by our house when there is a time out in process, I’m not strangling cats, it’s just Ian. Using his lungs to their full and wonderful potential. He usually gives up after 2 minutes and then sits quietly til his 3rd minute is over. He loves trucks and cars and things that move. He is a splitting image of his Uncle Pat (John’s brother). Only, thankfully, Pat has gotten over his temper tantrums πŸ˜‰ He’s 17. THERE IS HOPE! Ian will be starting preschool in the fall and I think he is completely ready for it. We will be getting him signed up for a preschool camp this summer as well as swimming lessons. Wish us luck!

And last, but not least, Gavin. Gavie, GG, G$. He’s got quite a few nicknames that we all call him when we need him. GG is probably my favorite and G$ is just silly. He is mischievous and is also the biggest button pusher we know. He bothers his siblings to no end and when you least expect it, he does it again!! He takes toys, he steals food, he does just about everything and anything to bother them. Yet they still let him play and hopefully G will learn from them (and us) what is right and what is wrong. But for an almost 2 year old, he is pretty sharp. His talking is getting a lot better, he is starting to string together 2 words, like Bye Truck, Hi Cat, Hi *insert sibling*. He loves to play outside and chase his siblings. They love running away so it’s a great compromise. He is terrible in the sandbox, loves to whip sand and dump it in the grass. Hopefully by the end of this summer he will understand that if he continues to dump it, there won’t be any sand to play with!

And no. I don’t have ANY new photos. Seriously. Depressing. *slap on the hand*

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Oh Goodness

Far too many things have happened and I haven’t blogged them (shame on me):

Groundhogs Day Blizzard– yeah…that happened. John got 2 days off from work and Kiki got 2 days off from school. The boys, well, they just hung out like any other day!

Our House-during our big dig out

The kids in front of the neighbors 5 ft fence, I guess the snow drift was close to 4 feet here at the bottom of the driveway.

Goofball, on top of snow mountain. (I love her jack-o-lantern smile)

Always Helping

Our Snowmound

 

Next: Kaelyn’s 7th Birthday! Chicka turned 7 on March 10th and she didn’t let ANYONE forget πŸ™‚ Her family party was on the 6th and it was American Girl themed. Kaelyn is very much into American Girl right now, she currently has Lanie and Kit which were gifts from Nana/Papa and Maga/Baga, along with a bunch of their accessories including pets. She also has my Girl of Today, Samantha and Kirstin. So basically, we can say she is ALL SET. Now for future gifts, we plan to purchase clothing and accessories.

Kaelyn’s Samantha Cake

Lanie on one of her birthday cards, I love her face. This is just so KAELYN. πŸ™‚

Gavin in the best seat of the house, on Papa’s shoulders of course.

Too Sweet to not post, she was so excited!

For her actual birthday Kaelyn requested a ‘White cake with pink frosting with white piping and writing on it saying Happy 7th Birthday Kaelyn‘. I improvised.

She didn’t seem to mind.

Ian enjoying cake.

Gavin without a care in the world, all he needs and wants is CAKE.

Kaelyn got a nightgown from Mom and Dad, and Kit got a matching one. She also got a fold out trundle bed that sleeps 2-3 dolls. Perfect for Kaelyn’s dolls πŸ™‚

Last: IT’S MID-MARCH!! Which means we are super-d-duper busy here in the Rork household!

We are…

Spending time in time-outs…

Dressing our dolls…

Licking our plates clean…

AND

Dressing our cats in miniature leprechaun hats!!

HAPPY MARCH MADNESS EVERYONE!


 

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To Great-Grandmothers House We Go!

Well, we really call them Nana Nana and Papa Papa but I thought that was a cute title! Gotta keep it creative here people! Just kidding. So we recovered from our busy Christmas weekend by driving down to Springfield to see John’s grandparents. We hadn’t seen them since July 09′ so it was well over due, and it worked out perfectly with everyone being free to join! We left around nap time for the boys and got there 4 hours later, definitely not a tough trip for us (South Carolina is 19+hrs) road warriors. It was so nice to see them and Nana Nana made tons of food and Papa Papa showed Ian and Gavin his tractors! They were in heaven!

We were bad about taking photos this round. We enjoyed everyone’s company so much that I think we just forgot to whip out the camera.

Reading a book and keeping himself busy.

Listening to Daddy talking.

Megan and Β Aunt Mari

She was going to steal his blanket…and he loved it. Nana and Nana Nana

We brought down the box Brio tracks (they come with a Tupperware snap n go lid…ROCKIN) and the kids played for hours.

Ian with one of Papa Papa’s small tractors.

We don’t travel light. We had our pack n play, everyone’s blankets, a suitcase and a duffel bag. Along with Pillow Pets and Lanie, we needed to roll our crap up and down through the hotel. Gavin just decided he had enough so he hopped on.
John and I also got the chance to visit the new Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum. That man was one amazing guy and the artifacts and exhibits were very special to see. The have a trip through his boyhood years and a trip though the presidential years to his assassination. One of Four of his stovepipe hats is there, and a lot of other cool Lincoln artifacts. We are planning a summer trip to see Nana Nana and Papa Papa and all the Lincoln sites! (no camera’s allowed in the exhibits so we decided to leave the camera at home for this trip)
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Christmas Day 2010

This Christmas morning the kids woke up and giggled all the way down the stairs to find all of their goodies Santa had stashed under the tree. We let them open their stockings while John and I woke up. That took about 2 seconds and they were ready for round 2 of present opening. The one thing the kids all wanted were those godforsaken Pillow Pets. So of course Santa went all out! Kaelyn got her ladybug, Ian got his dolphin (definitely not a comfortable pillow) and Gavin got a dog. Β The kids also got other miscellaneous things like more wooden train tracks, puzzles, LuLu the Kitty that doesn’t ever stop meowing, and some board games.

The boys got dinosaurs from Santa in their stockings.

Gavin looking for more.

He was being such a cutie pie Christmas morning!

Kae with her Dolly and Buttercup. The boys also got Mr. Pricklepants, Rex, Trixie, Lotso and Stretch, all from Toy Story 3 of course, in their stockings as well.

Oh man, there she is. 13lb LuLu. That’s all I have to say.

Gavin lovin on LuLu. Thinking that this cat doesn’t run away from me!

Ian got some extension pieces to make his Thomas and Brio wooden railway systems bigger. Little did he know a much bigger railway surprise was waiting for him at Nana and Papas!

After the opening of gifts at home, we headed over to my parents house to opening up stockings, gifts and have John’s special biscuits and gravy breakfast before Baga had to work. The kids got more spoiled with all the attention from Maga, Baga and Uncle Steve and loved seeing what was hidden under all the wrapping paper. By this point, Gavin was kind of over the whole “gift” thing but Kae and Ian had no problems helping opening his gifts.

Ramone, from Cars, was in Ian’s stocking. He has been sleeping with him ever since. He also changes color, totally Β just like the REAL THING! Too cute.

Kaelyn with her Selena Gomez and the Scene CD from Uncle Steve. She got this one signed by Uncle Dane today. Kaelyn also got the animals she wanted from the American Girl doll catalog, along with some more accessories and clothing for her dolls.

Gavin with his very own pop-up toy.

My dad got his Griswold Family Christmas shirt from us. It vividly brought back memories of putting our own cut down tree on top of his jeep and having it fly off the top of the car onto Rt.31. Oh the memories. Definitely one Christmas memory I won’t forget. It’s a bit full. Lot of sap. *spits*

I just love how this picture came out. Seabrook Island and Dad, two things that go very well together! Mom ended up getting some awesome new pj’s, perfume, and necklace. Dad got a rocking new esspresso maker and made some for all of us! It was truly a great Christmas morning. (also, his mustache is back…if anyone was wondering πŸ˜‰ )

After our Cathony celebration, we headed home and Β all took naps. We then headed over for round 4 of Christmas! The Rork Christmas! Nana, Papa, Megan, Pat and Al were all around to join in the festivities! Nana and Papa made an awesome roast, with tons of sides and drinks to go around!

Kaelyn opened up her big gift from Nana and Papa and it was her very own American Girl doll, Lanie!

Auntie Megan made Kaelyn and Lanie matching hats for the winter months!

During the BIG reveal! Ian and Gavin got their own Brio table and new track set from Nana and Papa!

The one and only time we will capture on camera the boys behaving so nicely and sharing.

Well Santa got a bit carried away. The boys love Toy Story and so does Mommy, so Santa decided to get them their awesome Buzz and Woody pjs for Christmas this year. He was able to find some Tangled jammies for Ms. Kiki too.

 

I’m almost finished wrapping up the end of the year posts. Just a few more to go and I’ll be all caught up! Next up blog: Downstate Springfield Trip to see Nana Nana and Papa Papa! We had a blast and are still full from all the eating we did down there πŸ˜‰ Healthier foods and exercise are on our agenda in the new year!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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