Saturday, March 22, 2014

Noah’s Spiderman Party!

For this year’s party, Noah requested a “Pidah-mem Birfday” (aka Spiderman Birthday). His party was today, and despite the weather being pretty yucky, we had a really great time. First on the planning list was invitations, which I made in Publisher.

Spiderman Invite

When Noah saw the invites, the first thing he said was “PIDAH-MEM!” The second thing he said, true to his form, was “I’m not wearing THAT shirt to my party!” He said he would be wearing an Aggie shirt – big surprise. I made him a Spiderman shirt, instead, in the hopes of getting him to agree to a color other than maroon.


It must have passed muster because he wore it without complaint on party day!


Decorations were pretty minimal. I picked up a set of Spiderman table decorations…


…and added these little “spider pops”.


This larger-than-human sized balloon watched over the party from a high corner in the pavilion. Slightly creepy – but the kids loved him.


Noah was blessed to have most of his favorite people in attendance, and they wore themselves out on the playground.


Rylan was in town, so he stopped by (along with the rest of the Collins crew).


Ben was thrilled to see Tanner and introduced him to one of his new buddies from church, Jake.


Gracie enjoyed some quality time with Grandad.


Then she moved on to a yummy spider pop snack.


Emily is another of Ben’s favorites (and Jake’s big sister). I can neither confirm nor deny that he declared his love to her in a Valentine’s Day card last month.


Love these ladies! Fraunt Jen, Baby Brecken, and Emily’s mommy – Sara – holding Baby Abby.


Lunch was hot dogs, chips, cheese (Noah’s favorite) and fruit. (He specifically requested strawberries and we added in some grapes.)


I think the birthday boy approved – judging by his ketchup/berry/cheetoh smeared face. :)


After lunch it was piƱata time.


Noah took the first couple of swings…


…and then politely handed the baton off to the next friend in line. Noah Lambert (or “Other Noah”, as my Noah calls him) was up second.


Each kiddo got 1 turn before Ben went last and smashed our little crepe paper Spidey to pieces. Cole, Michael, and Rylan all had some pretty noteworthy swings!


Then it was a candy free for all.


My little guys immediately dug into their candy bags. They fight like cats and dogs, but when the weekend was over and Michael went home, Noah kept asking about “Mitoll”.


Noah showed off his candy loot to Paw Paw & Dee Dee.


Before the party ended, we sang to Noah and cut his Spiderman cake.


I love how his cake came out. My favorite part was the clock showing 6:15 – the time my Noah bug was born THREE WHOLE YEARS AGO!!!


My crazy guy – I apparently wasn’t cutting cake fast enough.


He makes the best faces!


We had such a great time! Noah gave each of his friends a Spiderman punch balloon as they left…


…and we had enough helium ballons for everyone to have one of those, too.


As soon as we got home, all the kids needed a good scrubbing. I think that’s the mark of a successful party. :)


Happy Happy Birthday to our Noah Bug and thank you to all of our sweet friends who celebrated with us!

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Boone Doggie

We have a new family member! All five of us are completely smitten with a four legged, velvety eared, smoosh faced boy that came to make his home with us this past Friday! We would like to officially introduce Mr. Boone Doggie Scrumbles Barrick.

It’s been almost two years since our sweet Army Dog passed away. About a year ago, we decided that it was time to have a pup around the house again. We went back and forth over different breeds. We wanted a big dog for sure, but we wanted one that was calm and mellow like Army was. That’s how we decided on a Mastiff. From there we began to research breeders here in Texas and that google search introduced us to the American Mastiff and, specifically, Five B Ranch in Terrell, Texas. One visit to the website and we were convinced that we had to have one of these dogs!

We spoke to Lisa on the phone, filled out the application, and were placed on the waiting list in March of 2013. Then we waited and waited and waited while harassing chatting with Lisa monthly to get updates on the Five B crew. In October, we visited the ranch and met with Lisa and all of her beautiful doggies. Now we were even MORE excited to get a puppy!

Fast forward to January 7th, 2014, when we found out that Bindi had a huge litter of TWELVE Bosco puppies! A short time after that, we learned that we would be bringing home Mr. Blue! (There he is, sleeping upside down by his Mama’s feet. Fun fact, at 9 weeks, that remains his preferred sleeping position.)

We told Lisa that she would know which one was the Barrick puppy by his laziness. She sent us this pic and said, “I found your pup!” (Asleep in his food bowl. Priceless.)

We really loved watching him grow in the picture updates our (wonderful, amazing, thoughtful) breeder would post.

Lisa posted these two pics of Bosco and the puppies on the same day (Boone is all the way at the end of the line), so I had to make them into a meme for her. I think Bos is mentally adding up the costs of puppy college.

Here is our chunky monkey – looking so big – just a few days before we went to pick him up.

Brian and I drove up to Terrell on Friday and then turned around and drove our little guy home.

He was a perfect angel on the drive (which ended up taking SEVEN hours thanks to Spring Break traffic.) With the exception of a couple potty breaks, he pretty much just slept the whole time.

The kids are completely obsessed with him and are doing their best to become good little puppy trainers.

It’s been really yucky and rainy, but the sun finally came out today! It was a great afternoon for some outdoor play time and a drive with the top down, wouldn’t you agree?

His first vet appointment was this morning and Dr. Carriker was very impressed with how he looked (“He’s perfect!” he said), and with his gentle and calm demeanor. He is exactly 9 weeks old and 25 pounds even.

As Lisa promised, he spends a good bit of time doing this. (Still flat on his back – same as he was on Day 1.)

We are so in love with our new family member. He is the sweetest puppy and cute as he could possibly be! We are so grateful for Lisa and her family and their wonderful program at Five B, and we know that Mr. Boone will make Mama Bindi and Daddy Bosco proud!

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

My Despicable Three

It’s costume time again and I am beyond thrilled that the gremlins agreed to a theme again this year. Last year I really had to sell the idea of dressing as a group (although the final choice of trio was brought to a kids’ vote). This year, there was barely any discussion. We walked out of the theater after seeing Despicable Me 2 and we were all on a giggling high. I said, “It would be fun to do Despicable Me costumes for Halloween,” and Ben & Grace’s faces lit up! (Noah doesn’t really care what he wears. Like Seinfeld, he will wear whatever he has to wear to get the candy.)
Thanks to summer movie fun, these costumes have been in the works since July. In fact, I purposefully bought cheese balls for Ben’s birthday party so that I could save the big plastic jug and turn it into a minion head. I thought I was so ahead of the game. Then I went and waited until the last minute to get any of the actual costume making done (surprise, surprise). I sewed my last stitches this afternoon… just in time to hand them over to B, G, & N and have a little photo shoot when they came home from school. There were some frustrating parts, but I am mostly pleased with how they all turned out. I am 100% pleased that the kids are excited to wear them!
Now on to the nitty gritty of costume making… these photos were my inspiration:
I made Noah’s costume first, since it was the most involved. I referenced this tutorial and tweaked things as I went. I cut down the container and stuffed some batting inside the head to make it fit better. I drew the mouth where Noah’s head landed and cut that out.
I wrapped more batting around the outside before covering the entire thing in yellow fabric. (My mom picked up two plain yellow shirts from a screen printing shop. I used one as Noah’s top and the extra one to cover the head.) The goggles are made from wide black elastic, two canning jar lids spray painted silver, and eyes that I found online and printed. The hair is made from pipe cleaners. The teeth are white foam that I duct taped to the inside of the head. For the overalls, I looked around to try to find some cheap ones online, but I kept striking out. (I needed overalls for both Noah & Gracie). Then I remembered that I had a ton of heavy blue fabric left over from a previous project. I bought a pattern at a 99¢ sale (McCall’s 6592), grabbed some buttons when I was in Hancock’s, and ta-da… two pairs of overalls for $3.50.
The finishing pieces of N’s Minion costume were black gloves (Wal-mart) and black boots (Ben’s old rain boots covered in black duct tape). I do not think he could be any cuter. My favorite part? He calls himself a "BeeDo BeeDo”.
Little Agnes was up next. I made G & N’s overalls at the same time, so that was done. The only difference is Gracie’s have red buttons, a plain front, and I cuffed the pants up higher the way Agnes’s are.
Gracie’s t-shirt is from Wal-mart. (It was in the little boy’s section and had long gray sleeves that I just cut out. Her yellow socks are also from Wally World, and her red scrunchy may have been mine back in the day. (Children of the 80’s… unite!) The biggest challenge of the Agnes costume was the hair. I feel like the wig is a complete train wreck (don’t look too close) but it will have to do. I found it at Jo-Ann's for a few bucks. Have you ever tried to put a cheap wig of hair up into a pony tail (and have it stay)? Well, good luck to you. It was/is a mess. I stitched a toilet paper tube wrapped in black paper to the scalp of the wig and then tied black string around the hair all the way up to make it stand up (something Gracie specifically requested.) I’m fairly certain it will not survive the rigors of trick-or-treating/Fall carnival going… but at least I got a picture of her stand up hair. :)
Grace’s favorite part of the costume is the stuffed unicorn. She gladly shouts, in her best Agnes voice, “It’s so fluffy I’m gonna die!”
Ben’s costume was last and it was definitely the most simple. The black knit pants and oversized sweatshirt came from… you guessed it… Wal-mart. (At this point I think I deserve some sort of compensation for typing “Wal-mart” so many times in one post). I cut the ribbing off the sleeves and bottom of the sweatshirt and hemmed them to make them look more like Gru’s jacket. I cut the front of the sweat shirt right up the middle and attached an oversized silver zipper. The scarf is made from gray and black fleece and is just pieced together. His bald cap was the hardest thing to track down because I needed it in a child size. I finally ended up finding a kid’s “Lex Luthor Bald Cap“ online. He is wearing his homemade football pads (from two years ago) under his shirt.
I think Ben makes a handsome Gru… and he certainly has some Gru-like moves. :)
What do you when the costumes are done and everyone is happy? Have a Despicable Dance Party!
Oh my goodness, I love them.
Happy Halloween, ya’ll! I hope you get lots of treats. :)
PS. Check out our other Halloween themes:

Monday, October 14, 2013

Five B Ranch

The Barrick family has been on the waiting list for a puppy from Five B Ranch for about seven months now, and today we had the opportunity to stop by on the way back from Grammy & Grandad’s house. We had such a good time and are even MORE excited about the day we will get to bring one of these awesome dogs home!

Gracie really liked Bindi Blue. She was a big, sweet girl who will hopefully be having her first litter this winter.

This little cutie is Bitzy Lou. She was a pup from Lisa’s summer litters that is going to be joining the breeding program when she’s all grown up.

My personal favorite Five B doggie is Mr. Bosco. Oh my goodness, I have never seen such a big dog!

Pictures do not do him justice. His head… that ginormous head. It was insane. He could not be sweeter, either. Noah was a little scared of him at first.

Once he figured out how gentle he was, he just wanted to give him treats...

…and maybe take him for a walk. (We all thought it was best to veto that idea.)

Lisa has two breeding males, but I’m really hoping we get to bring home a little Bosco boy. I mean, seriously, how fantastic is he?!

Be on the look out for the new Barrick boy – hopefully coming to our family sometime in the next year. :)