Way back at the end of May (the 28th to be precise), our little dude turned four! Up until the day before his birthday he was telling people he was three-and-a-half, and had been anxiously awaiting his fourth birthday as many of his friends hit the milestone before he did.
All Jax wanted to do for his birthday was go camping with his cousins, but he also didn't want his little buddies to miss out, so we had a friend party the week before his birthday and a cousin camping party the week after (his birthday was on Memorial Day this year, so we tried to avoid major celebrations that weekend).
Because we were in the middle of remodeling a house and preparing to move into said house, I'll admit, I kinda threw Jax's friend birthday party together. In the past, I've always done a themed party, sent out cute invitations weeks in advance and made sure every detail was in place. This year, I picked up some monster truck decorations and sent out text invitations. Fortunately, Jax is a boy and could care less about the matchy-matchy and was just excited to have friends over. His two closest buds came over (along with one of Ava's friends) and they had a "major water fight" (Jax's words). They were so happy to attack each other with squirt guns and water balloons. It was serious business. I mean, look at Jax's face:
On Jax's real birthday (in our family, it's more like a birth-month rather than birthday celebration) our little early riser woke up extra early, announcing to the whole house that he was indeed four and that it was probably best that we all get out of bed and celebrate with him... and give him presents. Of course, he got monster trucks, monster truck signs for his new bedroom (from Ava and Eden), his own little digital camera and some other knick-knacky things. He was so grateful and couldn't stop thanking us all for the "best presents ever." Later in the day, cousins Nathan, Bracken, Baby Marco and Uncle Curtis and Aunt Courtney all came over at Jax's request. The water fight was such a hit the week before, I thought the kids could go at it again, this time with sponge bombs. Jax asked for an orange-flavored, orange cobra snake cake for his birthday. I attempted to make one, probably could have been better, but he loved it. Although, I don't know why I waste time making cakes for his birthday, he never eats them. Jax is an ice cream kinda guy all the way. Fortunately, Daddy is a cake guy.
Like I said before, all Jax really wanted for his birthday was to go camping with cousins. So, after months of waiting, the day finally arrived. Our little man was ready to go first thing in the morning but he had to wait for Daddy to get home from work, and unfortunately, on this particular day Andy was two hours late getting home. He had just started his new job at the engineering firm a few days before and was bogged down with some projects. So, we were the last to arrive at the birthday celebration, which was a little disappointing for Jax. But, the good news is, the cousins were already settled in so they got to play while Andy built our tent and we cooked dinner. The kids got filthy, explored the forest, played baseball, got more filthy, wrestled with uncles and just enjoyed each other.
On a few side notes: Ava is wearing a patch because she scratched her cornea the day before. She was up all night, horribly uncomfortable and in terrible pain. I took her to the doctor the morning of the camping trip, hoping it wasn't anything major. Our sweet Ava was so worried that her eye would keep us all from going camping and would ruin Jax's birthday. Fortunately, all was well and Ava got to be a pirate princess for a couple of days.
I have this picture of Jax squatting under a tree. No, he's not doing what one normally does in that position while camping. He's hiding. Why? I wasn't quite sure myself. All of a sudden I saw him go and hide with this weird look on his face. I asked him if everything was okay and he told me it was and asked me to go away. That took me aback. Jax is always so good about talking things out with me, especially if he's upset. I was a little concerned, until I caught sight of Jax's hands. They were covered in brown goo. Again, not what you think. I looked to the table and saw an open Reeses Peanut Butter Cup wrapper and immediately realized he had snuck one and retreated to the tree to indulge before I caught him and foiled his plan. I let him finish the treat, told him he didn't need to be sneaky, cleaned him up then laughed hysterically. My poor candy-deprived child.
What a great way to celebrate Jax's 4th birthday! I sure do love my little four-year-old! He's truly just a big bundle of laughs! I don't think a day goes by that Jax doesn't do or say something that has Andy and I in stitches. He's quite the little clown. He's very thoughtful and very helpful and loves his sisters so, so much! He's the perfect blend of rough and tumble ninja boy and sweet, cuddly little man.