Monday, July 21, 2014

Happy Birthday!

Raf is trying not to combust with excitement here! Thanks, all!


Party Train!

Yesterday was Raf's friend birthday party. In past years we've been able to invite mostly our friends but as Raf gets older he makes more and more of his own friends, so this was his first proper big-friend party. He had a fabulous time. Last year he slept through his party (and I am so glad we didn't have this party last weekend as the same thing would have happened!). We held the party at the Narrow Gauge Railroad in Portland, and it was super, super fun. They provide a few decorations, some tables, etc., and the kids get to have the party in an old train coach. It really was a fabulous place for a party. 

I was tempted to have a cake made for the party, but finding a vegan baker that isn't incredibly expensive is quite difficult, so I made everything myself :) Cupcakes!

Food was quite simple: popcorn (popped by Rich!), banana bread, blueberry muffins, melon and blueberry fruit cups, and peanut butter and jam sandwiches. I think only one sandwich was left!

A pinterest cake! Not quite as good looking as the one I was copying... but it was quite tasty, even if I do say so myself!

The children ate and played at will...

I love this play train. The kids were sort of wild in here!

And then we headed for a train ride! We had a coach to ourselves and it was quite the party train!

We stopped off along the way and the children got to see inside the boiler/engine (Raf will tell me what it's called). Raf looks adoringly at his big friend, Ava.

And then it was back to the museum for cake and presents!

I had a plan to write down all the gifts and who was the gift giver. It descended into a present opening frenzy with Raf's friends helping.

Raf received so many generous gifts! And he managed to received lots of new track master trains and not one duplication. Miracle!

Everyone left and the conductor had arranged for Raf to ride on another train ride, but this time with the train driver! I sort of held on for dear life on the outside...!

As we were about to leave ourselves, one of Raf's best friends turned up! We were so lucky to see them! And Raf was so happy to see Denny

A brilliant day! We didn't get home until after 3pm and in the evening we got some chips and headed to the beach for a late evening dinner. 

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Charlie! 21 months.

Charlie is 21 months tomorrow! He's seeming so much more like a toddler these day and his little personality is really blossoming. He's so feisty and funny and though he's fairly shy around strangers, he does love to give high-fives and wave to all he sees. He's saying more and more (which is really so  new to us as Raf was such a late talker) and he now more regularly puts two words together (where dada, hi and bye mama/dada/Raaa/, go bi(ke), etc., etc. 

He adores his big brother so much, and basically copies all that he does. In fact, he won't even wear his bib at meal times until sweet Raf acts like a good role model and puts on one, too. He's very mischievous, wanting all that Raf has (we should buy two of everything, we've quickly realized), loves snuggles and ice-pops, watermelon, pasta, digging in the sand, riding his bike, and, of course, playing with trains. He is not keen on being changed, brushing his teeth, cold water, and having his face wiped. While Charlie and Raf are quite similar, they're also quite different: I think that Charlie is a little more daring (as he tries to keep up with Raf), Raf is more agreeable (for instance, he has never minded having his teeth brushed). Raf used to receive comments from his teachers about what a neat eater he was/is, and Charlie is in no danger of receiving that sort of feedback. Both, though,  are incredibly tactile and loving and every day I wish these days would slow down.