Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Daddy's Special Day

We had an absolutely fantastic time celebrating Father's Day this weekend! I had to be a bit strategic as to how we would actually get to do up the big day, but in the end, we made it happen. Pete was on call delivering babies all day on Sunday, so we did most of our celebrating on Saturday. I think it's fun that he was a part of giving a few dads a really great father's day.

Bright and early Saturday morning, Ella and I woke Pete with a very special superhero-theme card, giving him the option of three different Duluth locations for breakfast. He selected New London Cafe, a place we've been for their very yummy three-cheese grilled sandwiches and sweet potato fries for lunch, but this was our first time swinging by for breakfast.

Miss Maira accompanied us, since she had spent the night while her big sister was in the hospital. (check out the update at the end of this post)

Sammy just adores his daddy.

This is one way the little guy gives kisses. Super cute, though it may need to change now that he's popped a tooth. A very sharp tooth, at that. With more on the way, it could turn into a dangerous little kiss. 

Once our tummies were filled with French toast and eggs, we headed back home where we were joined by our friends, Interna and Lindsay.  The two of them drove all the way up from the Cities to help construct Ella and Sam's brand new, crazy complex swing set. Three boxes of lumber, a whole lotta nuts and bolts, and a 42-page instruction guide made for a work-filled day. I primarily stuck to taking care of the kids while they put the entire thing together.


Eventually, Eli joined the action, too. This was quite the project!

At one point during the early stages of work, Pete asked if we had any snacks. Did we have snacks? Oh yes! Along with our superhero Father's Day theme, I had put together this bucket of treats using a free printable party package I found while searching through Pinterest.

It was fun coming up with titles for some of Pete's favorite treats. 

Look at that superhero of a dad! And yes, every superhero needs a bottle of muscle milk. And a mask. Pretty sure it's required. 

I snapped photos throughout the day of the construction progress.


Eventually it was time for another snack, so Ella and I whipped up a batch of cupcakes.

She decorated a special one just for Daddy. 

She had also made a plate for him a few days earlier, so we presented that to him with his cupcake (which may have landed on the grass before this photo was taken).

 I've been dreaming of having a playhouse for Ella and Sam for about the last year. A nice wooden playhouse that would stay in the yard for years, not a little plastic one. I had not even been dreaming, however, that it would also include a slide and swings. This play set was a complete surprise!

A couple weeks ago, Pete's parents told us they would like to get the kids a swing set for their birthdays this year. How absolutely thrilled was I?! Pete did a little shopping with them and told me that they found a great one. I didn't get to see it until they started to put it together Saturday morning. This is far beyond what I had imagined. Such a very special surprise!

At last, after hours and hours of work and two trips to the hardware store, all was complete. We let Ella stay up so she could play on it as soon as it was ready. And because it was getting dark, I wrapped a string of big bulbs around it, a touch that I think perfectly completed it. We hadn't told Ella what was being built during the day, so she slowly watched it going together. The first time she climbed up the ladder, she stood in the tree house and said, over and over, "I love it! I love it!" 

It seemed like the perfect project on Father's Day. Thank you so much to Interna and Lindsay for the incredible help putting it all together. It definitely wouldn't have happened without you!

Countless hours of play time await!

We did eventually get Ella into bed Saturday night, though it took some convincing. The very first thing she said when she woke on Sunday? "I have a new swing!" in a rather sleepy voice. What a doll.

As I mentioned, Pete was on call all day on Sunday. I took the kids to church in the morning before swinging up to the OB unit to surprise Daddy. Ella brought him a balloon she picked out on her own at the grocery store along with a big bag of cashews, a Pete favorite.

This little sign was Sam's gift to his daddy. 

Daddy and his boy. Such a special bond between these two.

We had a great time celebrating Pete's special day this year. He's an incredible father. Even when he's at his busiest, he never loses his focus on being a dad. He has extra long cuddles on the couch with Sam and takes Ella on weekly dates for donuts or ice cream. As the mama, I'm so very blessed to know and see that my little ones are being loved on by a strong, confident man who does not shy away from being gentle and sensitive. I know that his bond with each of them will greatly impact their lives. How blessed we all are by that.

Happy Father's Day, my love.


Malena update:
As I wrote on Friday, my niece Malena was in the hospital following seizure-like activity, a result of a mass in her brain. Tests were done on Saturday before she was discharged. No answers were provided as to what was causing the activity, so she'll have more testing done soon at Amplatz Childrens Hospital in Minneapolis. She's had many appointments there already over the last few months. We're praying for more answers on what the mass is (cancer was ruled out in March) and what can be done to deal with the side effects. I will continue to update as time progresses. Your continued prayers are greatly appreciated.


 I leave you with these fantastic Sammy swing reactions.

I think he's a fan.

I love his joy. 

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