Celebrating Holden's Third Birthday

Seeing that we would be in Wichita for Easter weekend, which happened to be a few days before Holden's birthday, we asked Craig's sister if we could use her house to throw him a small family birthday party.  No theme, no decor, no Pinterest-worthy anything; just cousins, pizza, and a cake from a local bakery, which is all it takes to make a three-year old feel special!  Well, that and a few gifts. 😉

A guitar was at the top of his birthday wishlist.  His expression in this photo is everything! 😍

I love that this kid got to be the center of attention for awhile.  As the middle child with a baby in the house, I feel like he rarely gets that!  He has been obsessed with "party hats" for some time now, so of course, that was a party necessity! 

For his actual birthday (which was on a Tuesday), I picked him up from daycare and headed to Chuck E. Cheese--just the five of us!  (But first, a stop at Target to choose a new toy with a birthday gift card.)  I've learned that it's much easier to plan an experience (or something out of the ordinary anyway) than it is to throw a party--hence Chuck E. Cheese--and again, we really wanted to make him feel extra special on his third birthday.

After Chuck E. Cheese, we headed home and let him ride his new four-wheeler, which Brantley was pretty jealous of.  I think it's safe to say Holden had a great third birthday, which meant: mission accomplished!

Love this little three-year old so, so much!

Holden is T H R E E !

Happy, happy birthday, Holden Beckett!

You are not our first and you are not our last, but you are loved more than you can even understand right now.

Your personality has really flourished this past year and although you are timid + stubborn + oh-so particular, you are also one of the sweetest little toddler boys I know!  Your bright blue eyes can light up a room and your sweet, raspy voice just melts my mama heart.

You are a mama's boy through and through and I could not be more proud of you!

Happy, happy birthday, Holdy!!!

Holden's 3rd Birthday Wishlist

In just 11 short days, my middle child will be three whole years old!  As cliche as it sounds, that just doesn't seem possible!  I always struggle to come up with gift ideas for Holden.  One, because he likes whatever his brother likes.  He wants whatever his brother wants.  And two, we already have all. the. things.  Nonetheless, I rounded up a few ideas/plans for his third birthday!

Kids ATV Ride On 4-Wheeler - Yes, we got the boys a Powerwheel truck as a joint Christmas gift a couple of years ago.  But Brantley usually highjacks it and Holden enjoys driving the neighbors' smaller Powerwheels anyway.  This one is a little smaller than our truck, but is recommended up to age 6 so I feel like we can still get plenty of use out of it.  And the price is much better than the price of some of the bigger Powerwheels!  (There's an even better price on the 6V version here.)

Dueling Stomp Rocket - We had a stomp rocket and both boys loved it.  However, some parts are broken, other parts are lost.  This dueling version looks to be a good replacement as it may eliminate the need for the boys to fight over who gets to play with it!

Melissa & Doug Pattern Blocks & Boards - I actually bought this during a Melissa & Doug sale at Christmastime and have been saving it for his birthday.  These things remind me of tangrams and math teachers love tangrams!  And you can never go wrong with M&D!

Youth KU Baseball Cap - We've got every other team covered, but Holden is lacking a Jayhawk baseball cap.

Wooden Toy Ukulele - A couple of our neighbors have toys similar to this and Holden loves them!  In fact, he has a blow up guitar he always "plays" but there's a hole in it so it deflates quicker than we can air it up!  I know he would love one of these!

Toy Drum Set - A few weeks ago, Craig asked Holden what he wanted for his birthday.  Holden didn't know so Craig suggested some drums.  And now whenever his birthday comes up, he insists on wanting some drums.  Go figure.  (Craig, next time how about you suggest something a lot quieter, mmmmmkay?)

Assorted Anti-Slip Socks - I'm a plain Jane.  I always pick out white socks for the boys, but Holden adores anything but white socks.  This looks like a fun set for toddler boys!

Football Guys - And finally, these Iowa Hawkeye football guys.  As much as I'd love something without a million pieces, I know Holden would love playing with these!

Any other suggestions for a 3-year old?  Send them my way, if so!

Rhett Kauffman: 4 Months Old

I feel like I just wrote one of these.  Oh, right, because I did!   I was incredibly late on your last monthly update and I'm trying oh-so hard not to let that happen again!  So here we go - four months.  One-third of the way to one.  You are growing before our eyes.  Though I don't know how much you weigh (4-month appointment is next week), you seem so much bigger!  I still think you're a little guy for your age, but you are growing nonetheless, there's no doubt about it.  And even though you're four months into this life of yours, I still look at you as my near-newborn.  I feel like each of my babies have aged slower than the last, though the time goes faster.  Does that even make sense?  Probably not, but I definitely remember feeling similar things with Holden.

You seem to be getting a little fussier in your "old" age.  We can't hardly leave you alone in a room anymore.  The minute you realize there's no one to entertain you, you act out.  You often join us at the dinner table and demand we hold you more often than not.  Daddy isn't fond of your constant need for attention, and I can't say as if I always am either, but the moment I get frustrated, I remind myself that you are our last and suddenly, all of the frustrations melt away.  And despite your extra fussiness, you are still a great baby - and we are so lucky to have you!

I believe four months is when our pediatrician recommends rice cereal - I can't believe that time has already come!  I'm waiting for the go-ahead at your appointment next week, but I look forward to that next step!  Meanwhile, you are still doing great on your formula diet, minus the pooping part.  Your poor belly seems so uncomfortable at times and you only poop every few days - a far cry from your brothers!  Feeding you can be a big pain in the booty, too.  You squirm and turn your head away like it's your job.  But the moment we take away the bottle, you throw a huge fit.  At first, I thought you were just distracted by everything around you, then I thought maybe you had a sore throat, then I thought the nipples were bad.  But I've ruled out each of those options and now I don't know what to think, especially because it's not at every feeding.  Again, I remind myself that you are our last and as annoying as it can be, someday I'll wish for a little baby to bottle feed once again, turning head and all!

Sleep is still going well!  I've heard about that 4-month sleep regression, but so far, it hasn't affected us.  Knock on wood.  Naps are still a bit of a mess--very inconsistent--but I assume that's the norm for a third child who must adjust to everyone else's schedule.  I have noticed that you're not falling asleep as often on the 25 minute drive home from daycare each afternoon, but then you get so tired by evening's end.  It usually makes bedtime easy peasy, but can make for quite a few moments of fussiness before that.

The biggest update from this past month - you rolled over!  But not from belly to back like a normal baby typically does first; nope, you rolled from back to belly!  I didn't believe your dad when he informed me of this (or I thought it was a fluke) until the next day when I left you on your back and came back 30 seconds later to find you on your belly!  And then we watched you with our own eyes again and again!  We immediately stopped swaddling you at bedtime, though we have yet to find you sleeping on your belly.

It's been another fabulous month!  Four months into this zone defense thing and I can't imagine it any other way.  Love you, Rhetti!

4 Months of Rhett

Size: Will update after your appointment next week!

Words: Lots of raspberries and babbles.

Activity: Time in the Bumbo and other baby seat, time under your play gym, lots of being held.

Food: 5 ounces five to six times per day.

Sleep: 10 to 11 hours overnight.

Bedtime/Waketime: Bedtime around 7pm and you typically wake around 6am.

Hair: Still not a ton, but it's growing.  You have more than Brantley had at this age, but less than Holden.  The color is blondish-reddish.

Eyes: Blue

Teeth: None.  You have been constantly chewing on your fingers, but no other signs of sprouting a tooth.

Wardrobe: Some 0-3 months, some 3-6 months.

Diapers: Size 1s, but will probably switch to 2s once we're through this current box.

Likes: Your paci, car rides, sleeping, being held, being talked to, chewing on your fingers, your mama, observing everything around you.

Dislikes: Being hungry, being tired, being left alone.

Mommy Update: The postpartum hair loss began right before you turned four months.  Ugh.  But I'm pretty much down to my normal weight again so I'll gladly take the hair loss.

Mommy's Fave - As much as I cringe when you wake up early on weekends, I love feeding you while sipping my coffee in the peace and quiet of the early morning hours.  I love that it's my special time with you and you only and *almost* makes up for all the time I spend away from you during the weekdays.