As I have gotten older, and my life changed dramatically from year to year, my interests continue to change as well. It's normal, it's's something almost everyone can say. But this morning it really struck me, as I looked up and saw these two kids hanging out together, that everything I love, everything I am interested in and everything I look forward to has to do with the three littlest family members in my life. Aden, Layla & Jade are the most amazing little babies I know. They are the busiest, cutest, most entertaining and the most unpredictably hilarious kids (since my siblings and myself, of course).

When my brother, sister and I grew up we lived close to our cousins Tim & Michelle, but all the rest of our family lived far away. Most of the time we only got to see them on special occasions, holidays or summer vacation. We barely knew the rest of our cousins, but I can honestly say that Michelle has become one of my best friends and Tim will always be someone I want to impress (he was always the oldest, the coolest and the wisest of the bunch).

I want that same friendship, that I share with Michelle, for my son and future kids. I want that for Layla and for Jade and for all of the 12 nieces and nephews my brother has promised me.

I want Aden to love his cousins and to be able to call them some of his best friends.

For me, one of the greatest things about being a parent is knowing that every single day I have the opportunity to create lasting memories for my son. Every time we make this long trip home, I always look forward to the millions of photo ops that come along with these adorable little mess-makers. Including this one. Aden, Layla & Jade were being their usual selves, bouncing around the house enjoying a few shouting matches and seeing who could throw toys the furthest...and Grandma decided it was time to go outside. We bundled the bundles up in their wintery best and made our way outside with our odd collection of strollers. As we began our trek to the park down the street, we quickly realized that we wouldn't make it that far, seeing as the temperature was a balmy 8 degrees outside. As it turns out, that is a little bit too cold for a trip to the park. So we hurried ourselves around the block and right back to the house, but not before I snapped this picture of our happy three.

Believe it or not, they were actually very excited for this trip to the park!!

Harold and my brother Evan spent the afternoon wrestling with the monsters and chasing them around the upstairs. Eventually they decided it was time to come downstairs and as they made their way down in this little train, we had to take a few pictures.What a bunch of goofballs!!

Uncle Evan and 2 of his favorite munchkins.
 While all of the adults were hanging out downstairs, playing a game of Phase 10, Layla & Aden made their way upstairs. We made a unanimous decision that they would be alright up unsupervised. As long as there were no tears, screams or obnoxiously loud noises...what could they possibly get in to? Eventually, after a little bit too much time had gone on without any noise at all, I made my way upstairs, video camera turned on. (Always keep a video camera at the ready when sneaking up on suspicious toddlers) This is what I saw at the top of the stairs...

We ended our night with a few rounds of Phase 10 and then our friends Molly, Connie & Aaron showed up to visit with us for a little while. It was so nice to see them again after such a long time!! 

Another full day, another late night and a big happy family together again, the way it should be.

This entry was posted on Thursday, January 3, 2013. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response.

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