Friday, March 20, 2015

St. Louis Visit

The boys' cousins from St. Louis surprised them over Christmas break and came for a visit without the Black boys knowing it. The Black boys wanted to return the surprise, so we drove to St. Louis for spring break to surprise their cousins. While there, we did lots of fun, St. Louisey things, like the City Museum. I have blogged about it before, but it is a remarkable wonderland of ladders and slides, caves and hidey holes. It's really just a fantastically giant playground for kids of any age.

Solomon faced a few fears and did a few hard things, ending in lots of fun and increased courage. He climbed some big ladders in order to be rewarded with some awesome slides.

Asher climbing one of many metal tubes.
Ezra headed down a metal mesh tube.
The view of the ball pit from up above.
The youngest 3 enjoyed the block area.
 Yes, a bit blurry, but the giant hamster wheel was quite the hit and much harder than it looks.
 Obed in the ball pit.

Saturday, March 7, 2015


Some friends from church gave our family a set of ski passes this year and were able to take the older 2 boys skiing. I didn't get any pictures (agh!), but Vince did get a video. Ezra and Asher LOVE skiing and are doing quiet well with it.

Wednesday, March 4, 2015

Denver Museum of Nature and Science

Every year, the museums in Denver offer days with free admission throughout the year. Because there are so many in our family, we try to take advantage of some of these days that get us in for free. The first week of March brought a free day at the Denver Museum of Nature and Science, so the boys and I loaded up and headed down for the day with some friends.

The boys enjoyed all the exhibits; some more than others. The space exhibit is always fun. Ezra tried (with little success) to park a model space shuttle on its landing pad. It's more complicated than one might think.
 The mummy exhibit was fascinating, as they had several different mummies on display.
It's always amazing to see the dinosaur bones. What remarkable creatures they were! I'm curious how dinosaurs fit into the scope of biblical history.

The boys' favorite exhibit was the human body exhibit. Asher is riding a bike which also monitors his heart rate.
 Uzziah is listening with mule deer ears.
 Asher in front of the grizzly bear.
 Obed loved this baby seal.
 The boys with their friends in front of the gem exhibit.
 We're thankful to live so close to Denver, which offers so many great options for museums.

Wednesday, February 4, 2015

Mama's Birthday

January to February is a busy time in the Family of Blacks. Vince and I celebrate our anniversary. Then we celebrate Asher's, Uzziah's and my birthday. There's lots of celebrating to do! Vince does a great job of making me feel special and making sure the boys know how to celebrate mom well. And this year did not disappoint.

Vince took the boys shopping for my birthday and came home with quite the stash of fun trinkets and gifts. After having so many celebratory desserts for the others in our clan, I didn't feel like having a big, sweet dessert, so Vince and the boys made chocolate dipped strawberries for me.

We went out to dinner as a family.
And then we came home and enjoyed the strawberries Vince and the boys had dipped earlier. In spite of being the only girl in a house full of men, I am sure blessed and feel very cherished by all the guys in my life. I'm thankful for Vince who works so hard to model this for our boys.

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Uzziah Turned 3

Once again, time seems to be marching on much more quickly than I would like to accept, and my sweet Uzziah Joel turned 3 today. THREE! How can that be? (I know I start every blog post about my kids' birthdays in a similar fashion, but seriously, this time marching on stuff is crazy fast!). Uzziah was super excited to have a birthday because he got to make cupcakes. We went in to sing happy birthday to him this morning, and he said, "can we make cupcakes now?"
 He chose the ever popular donut for breakfast.
 And of course, opened presents.
Uzziah is really into "Jake and the Neverland Pirates" these days and he had a very Jake-inspired birthday. He got a jake spy scope, headband and treasure map, Jake pajamas and sheets, and a Jake game. He's set on Jake gear until he either outgrows it or graduates high school.
As I mentioned, Uzziah's chosen birthday activity was to decorate cupcakes. So while he rested, I got all the fixings prepared.
 His brothers were pretty excited too!
We try really hard to avoid having a lot of sugar, but for birthdays, I say anything goes. Thus the donuts for breakfast and the cupcake mounding with gummy bears, chocolate, sprinkles, and other treats. Uzziah built his own cupcake and was pretty proud of it.

Happy birthday to the baby of the family who brings us all so much joy. We love you more than you will ever know or understand!

Monday, January 19, 2015

Asher's 9th Birthday

Asher turned 9 this year! Wow, time does sure fly. As has been the case in the past few years, Asher has wanted to go to the Lego store. So on Friday, we loaded up and headed to Denver for a birthday celebration.

Asher (and all the boys) have been saving their money, birthday & Christmas dollars and gift cards for about 6 months in order to buy the Lego set of their (current) dreams.

We got up early and had a birthday breakfast (as a side note, the Elmo balloon was for Uzziah... Asher lost interest in Elmo about 5 years ago).

 Opening gifts.
After the boys got their dream sets at the Lego store (not sure what Obed is doing).
We stopped for lunch, per Asher's request, at Park Burger in Denver.

Then home for a Lego building marathon. It took the boys about 10 hours to build their sets.
During the process:

And the finished products:

Happy birthday to our passionate, loving, tender-hearted son. We love you more than words could ever express.

Sunday, December 28, 2014

Christmas 2014

We like to celebrate Christmas for the whole month of December and draw out the fun and celebration of Jesus for as long as possible! And this December did not disappoint. Each of the boys got to have a special date with dad and then go Christmas shopping for the brother he chose. Asher, Ezra and Solomon each bought a Lego gift card for his brother. Obed got a Jake doll for Uzziah and a Play-Dough for Solomon.

Vince and Asher went to Little Bird for a date.
Obed and daddy went to the Bean Cycle for their date.
 Solomon and daddy also went to Little Bird and had peanut butter cookies.
And Ezra and daddy went to Starry Night and got carrot cake and a pumpkin pie steamer.
One of my favorite traditions is driving around and looking at Christmas lights. We found a house this year that the boys particularly liked. It had over 35,000 lights and every single light danced to music. It was something.
We had some friends over to decorate gingerbread houses.

The last several years we have gotten a puzzle to do during Christmas week. The boys really enjoyed doing it this year and were able to do it in about 2 days time (it had 550 pieces).
We made cookies as a family.

Stockings on Christmas morning.
 Just before the gift opening began.

This was Asher's gift to Ezra. Got to love brotherly love!
One of my favorite parts of Christmas this year was that Ezra hand made gifts for most of the family. He made a purse for me. For Uzziah he made a bunny.
And for Obed he made an Angry Bird.  I love his thoughtfulness and pray that as he continues to grow into a young man, his thoughtful nature will grow with him.
The after Christmas morning carnage.
Solomon playing with his Lego set he got for Christmas.
The boys got Battleship for Christmas this year, so we spent a bit of time on Christmas, sitting by the fire and playing.
Even Kevin got a Christmas present.
Uzziah got a hat and some new bear boots.
The boys all got Nerf guns this year, which they all decided were their favorites, along with a new-to-us Wii, complete with a FIFA soccer game. We had a great day as a family and were blessed once again.