A Very Ninjago Birthday

For the first few years having kids, I was able to pick their birthday party themes. Dr. Seuss, pirates, race cars. Subtly, I could sway them to pick a theme I liked or one that I had lots of good ideas. This year, my middle child (the stubborn one) turned four and everything changed. Six months ago he announced that he wanted a “Ninjago” birthday party and I was fairly certain that I could change his mind. As his birthday approached, he was still resolute. Ninjago. Ninjago? Really? What about a chef party? Or an artist party? Ninjago was not my favorite pick. At all. I don’t love cartoon themed parties anyway, but this one just felt like it was a fad – something they will like today and forget tomorrow. But, he was convinced and I’m a big fan of letting kids have an opinion and making their birthday […]

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Four Years Later – a flashback blog

Four years ago I wrote a blog post about having our second child while living in Puebla, Mexico. That blog no longer exists and since we just celebrated his 4th birthday, I thought it would be fun to share it here as a flashback. He’s here! Yes, in case you haven’t heard, Pax Elias Staton arrived on March 11 at 10:20am. Now that it is a few days later (and the c-section pain has subsided), I thought I should sit down and share more details about that day, not that it is too terribly exciting, but I thought maybe some of you would be interested to know what it was like to deliver in Puebla. Well, let’s just say we headed to the hospital with a fair amount of anxiety and nerves. I’ve never had surgery before (not counting wisdom teeth) and that alone was enough to put me on […]

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Mixing Play-Doh

Have you ever watched a Play-Doh commercial or seen the Play-Doh box front where all the colors are neatly organized?  I’m talking about the perfectly cut circle of fake red tomato paste that was set gently upon a golden brown play-doh crust followed by a play-doh crumble of mozzarella and finished off with a few tiny red circles that look just like pepperonis. (image via google image search) Now my wife and I are very similar in a lot of ways, but when we first introduced our kids to Play-Doh we discovered a BIG difference.  As a person who enjoys organization, perfection, and likes to keep my artistic projects “inside the lines,” my play-doh preference is to keep the colors separate.  My wife, however, (the person who enjoys artistic freedom, thinks outside the norm and has taught our boys the difference between green, blue, and teal), is on the other end of the play-doh spectrum. Let’s […]

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Things I Find Around My House | In the Dryer

Have you ever opened your dryer or washer to find something you didn’t expect?  You know those times you forget to check the pockets of your kids pants or maybe your own? Sometimes the surprise is good –  like money. Other times, the surprise is bad like a pen or chap-stick. But then sometimes, it is just plain random and weird – like today. While doing a task both my wife and I despise, I opened up the dryer and found several little tiny objects – several meaning A LOT! Seeds from who knows where. We don’t have these in our yard…maybe from our church, maybe from my in-laws. I honestly don’t even know where my kids find these things and why they feel the to collect them?! Then again, I shouldn’t put it past them because as I write this I recall just a couple months ago I found […]

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What Works for Us | Favorite Gifts

Each year without fail, Christmas and birthdays come rolling around. They happen whether you are ready for them or not. Sometimes we feel like there is that special item our kids have been begging for or if you are a Dad like me, there is that item you gravitate towards every time you look down the toy aisle at Target.  Yep, I still love the toy aisle and I’m currently 33. Here are a few of those toys our kids can’t seem to put down (*Amazon affiliate links included): Magformers – on the pricier side, but our kids will build with these, take them apart, build something else over and over again and they are indestructible (thus far) Strider Bike – we got this for our son who is now 6 and he totally skipped the training wheel stage.  Our middle son, Pax, who is now 3 picked it up and loves cruising on […]

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