Thursday, November 13, 2014

Getting to Know Gater

Because I entered the world with a bit more "commotion" than Gates, friends and family had a unique opportunity to get to know me from a very early age. From my birth to heart surgery to full recovery, my parents shared a lot about me and my personality.

I recently realized that Gates (fortunately) was not afforded the same "get-to-know-you" opportunity. I thought I'd share some fun facts about my little brother.

Nicknames: Gater or The Destroyer
Often compared to: A caveman or small dinosaur
Favorite words: Done, goal, hot dog, dad, hike, and shhh
Favorite noises: Grunting (like caveman)
Favorite foods: Pretty much anything
Favorite non-foods he likes to eat: Toothpaste, hand sanitizer, sidewalk chalk, dirt, and hairspray
Favorite thing to throw: Anything
What makes him laugh: me

Favorite item: His blue blanket
Fastest way to make him mad: Put shoes on his feet or a hat on his head
Fastest way to make him happy: Let him smash something (a fort, a block tower, etc)
Most impressive meal: At one breakfast, he ate a banana, strawberries, a waffle, 4oz smoked salmon, a smoothie, and a turkey dog (wow, I know)
Most impressive snack while grocery shopping with my mom: A banana, an apple, and a power bar (the guy at the checkout counter was impressed)
Best friend: me
Favorite game: Hide-and-go-seek chase
Favorite appliance: The microwave
Favorite activity: Tackling people, smashing stuff, and pushing buttons (on toys, elevators, phone, appliances, doorbells)
Best sound: His laugh. He cracks himself up all the time and laughs like an old man, it's awesome
Loves: Music, dogs, balls, and ANYTHING I'm doing/playing with
Skill: Stellar climbing skills. We keep finding him on top of stuff (closet shelf, patio table, ladder)
Disposition: Slow to warm up to new people and places. Can be feisty if you don't give him his space. Once he's comfortable, look out. He'll tackle you and explore every corner of a new environment

He's pretty awesome. I hope you get to know him as well as you've been able to get to know me. If you do, I guarantee a lot of laughing.

Tuesday, November 4, 2014


What's not to love about this holiday - candy, dressing up, parades, playing tricks - non-stop fun! We had several Halloween events so we decided to dress in different costumes for each one. Here are some of the highlights...
Football players (and spider cookies)
 Batman, Robin, the Batmobile, and the words from the comic strip

Gates not only got to be my sidekick, as Robin, he got to operate the smoke machine while I ran through it.

Our grandparents came to town and joined in the craziness. We had around 500 trick or treaters - insanity but so much fun (my parents bought 500 glow lite bracelets and we went through all of them!) Whether you're 1 or 100, Halloween is definitely a treat!

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Zombie Walker

It's official, Gates is a walker! He's been teasing us for months, walking a few steps and then crawling away. My mom is convinced he's been break dancing in his room when we're not looking. But just in time for Halloween, Gates has perfected the zombie walk. He laughs the whole time - maybe he knows it looks like a zombie walk - with his arms and legs a little stiff shuffling along. Way to go little brother! I'm excited for our first race!

Saturday, October 25, 2014


Fall is a time full of festivals and our family partakes in all of them! From the hay rides to the corn mazes to the over-the-top 500 foot slides, what's not to love about this time of year?!?!

While I went last year, I slept through most of the action. This year I slid down the slides, road the bikes around the track, fed the animals, bounced in the moon bounces, climbed in the castles - if a festival had it, I did it. A few new discoveries this year included a ball sling shot - which, by the way, my mom says she wants to build in our backyard. A giant sling shot is attached to two posts. You insert a ball, pull back, aim at the target, and let 'er rip! Our mildly competitive family stayed at this activity for well over an hour.

Pictures tell the story best, so here are some of the highlights...

One of the biggest, and most random, highlights was bumping into the Hutchins family at Pumpkinville. It's a long story - and I was actually asleep in the stroller for most of this - but here's the gist. After playing all day outdoors at the Leesburg Animal Park and Pumpkinville, we headed indoors to a play yard because it began to rain. Most every else left at this point, but my mom and her friend chatted on a bench next to a half-wall while Bodie and his buddy played with a little girl on a playland structure. A woman walked over and said, "I can't believe it, it IS Lisa Lybbert." The little girl Bodie had met in the play yard was the niece of one of my mom's closest friends. Here's where it gets confusing...the friend, Amy Hutchins, lives in Washington state. Her parents live in Utah. Her brother's family lives an hour south of DC. They all grew up in California together. Anyway, it was Amy's parents who were visiting her brother's family, all at Pumpkinville at the same time - SMALL world and a big treat to see them.

The BEST part of the festivals was, by far, the events of this video. Thanks to my awesome dad and video technology, we have watched this seven seconds over and over and over again...laughing every single time. Long live the fall festivals!

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Uncle Rick

Uncle Rick popped in town unexpectedly for a quick business trip. He was in DC for about 48 hours and we scored a whole evening with him!

We picked him up from the airport, showed him how to eat a variety of snacks in the car while we waited in traffic, played in the yard, ate dinner, tackled each other, and he read us bedtime stories. Pure awesomeness.