The boys are officially done with their Peewee and Grasshopper football seasons. I’m a bit relieved for scheduling purposes, but overall the season was a great deal of fun. Jeremy, in particular, loved every minute of it. It didn’t matter if practice lasted longer than two hours, or if it rained, or if it was freezing cold or blistering hot. He will be counting the days until spring practice.
Jackson did not love football as much as he thought he would, so he’s fine that it’s over. His team worked so hard this year and actually won the Grasshopper Superbowl last night. The crowd erupted, the team screamed, the coaches cried. Even though Jackson has already said he won’t play again next year (he’s an archer now, remember?), he was quite proud of himself and happy to receive a medal last night. This is the first award he’s ever received for a sport.
This photo was taken on the night of Jeremy’s last game:After last night’s win: Victory!
We had a visitor the other night. Salem was running around the neighborhood later than I preferred so I went on the front porch to call for him. And there he was. Not Salem, but the mantis. He was as big as a hotdog, a tennis shoe, a light saber. I stared at him for a minute and then realized I should document our introductions. Better yet, I needed to get Jeremy out of bed to see the creature for himself.
(It got particularly creepy when he turned slowly and stared directly into my soul.)Jeremy, in his Star Wars pajamas and bed head, got all cerebral about it.
“Oh, that’s a praying mantis. See how he folds his hands? It’s like he’s praying,” he says casually. “The female eats the male, you know.”
Not knowing whether or not our porch visitor was a boy or girl, or whether or not it was happy to see us, we decided to leave it alone and go inside. A few minutes later, Salem moseyed back home, and I noticed the mantis had left.
I’ll start by confessing that I bought this child ten gifts. It sounds more expensive than it actually was considering that seven of the ten gifts were under five dollars each. Jeremy was overwhelmed by both the quantity and quality of his birthday presents, which meant he was smiling ALL DAY.
We made sure to tell him that he will not receive eleven presents next year.
To make the gift-giving event special, we sent him on a seek-and-find throughout the house and yard. Jackson was his little shadow and showed true happiness for his big brother as each gift was opened. They were a sweet pair.
Chuck and I ended the evening by taking Jeremy to Red Lobster for the Endless Shrimp deal. Knowing he can throw down serious amounts of shrimp, it seemed like the best plan. Jeremy was stuffed to the gills by the end of dinner. Happiness abounds.
The last gift is better presented through video.
Overall, I think Jeremy had a fantastic birthday. He even looked a little older to me this morning.
When Jeremy needs a quick mental break from school, this is where he goes:
He loves animals, especially ours, so when he needs to check out of history or math, he checks in with Major and Salem. This trio, in such close and calm proximity, happens on a very rare occasion (which is why I snapped the photo). It looks like Jeremy is sad, but rest assured, he is not. He’s at peace. I’m nurturing every ounce of his love for animals because I wholeheartedly believed we could be raising a zoologist.
Jeremy turns 10 on Sunday. He’s been talking about turning 10 since he was eight, so it’s going to be a BIG day for him. We have a few treats planned but we’ve long since abandoned the birthday party route. A few years ago, we realized that spending time with our boys left a bigger impression on them and created meaningful memories for all of us when we focused on one or two activities rather than a two-hour party of sugar and screaming. We had those parties in their earliest years, and they were a hoot, but now we keep it simple. They choose their meals, they choose a big activity (bowling? zoo? aquarium?), and we put all of our attention on keeping attitudes light. Sometimes other friends and family are involved, sometimes it’s just the four of us.
For Jeremy’s birthday last year, Chuck took him to his first Tennessee football game and we bought him a new bike. This year, he’s not sure what to expect but he knows that on Sunday he will be king for a day.
My firstborn is turning 10. Shake me out of this dream because it does not seem real.
We officially have a fourth and second grader, and since we can’t take pictures of them catching the bus or wearing new backpacks, these photos will have to do. They’ll also serve as our “official school pictures” for record keeping. (No goofy neon-striped background from Olan Mills for my kiddos! We prefer to go on location.)
At seven and almost ten years old, here are our handsome young men. We are blessed.
Cheers to a great year! P.S. I’ve already peeked at my classes for the semester. I definitely have my work cut out for me: Novel writing (Yay!) and Literary Theory (Boo!).