Celebrating Moms 2013

Our preparations for Mother's Day started actually a few weeks in advance.   While Justin was out of town for a long really long super fun guys weekend, the boys and I found time to get busy crafting some Mother's Day art for some of our favorite moms and grandmothers.  The boys love this set up. I just put a fitted sheet around our round kitchen table and voila!  Instant art studio. One of their favorite things to do.

our supplies

getting crafty 
We made flowers for our loved ones.

A couple of months ago the boys had a fundraiser at their school called My Original Artwork.   They each made a great piece of art and it was sent home with a catalog.  There were 100's of items you could get the art work on.  I got a set of potholders for the grandmothers and great grandmothers but got the cutest ornaments for my tree.   I also got to keep the original artwork which I framed.  Such a great idea!

The week of Mother's Day we assembled our packages and off they went in the mail.  Delivering love from the sweet boys in Texas to our special ladies.

Mother's Day weekend started extra special for me.  On Thursday the boys were so excited to give me the gifts they made me at school.  They told me about these "surprises" all week.  When I got to school they greeted me at the door with their presents.  They kept asking "do you love them mommy?"  And they both declared "this is the best mother's day ever!"  I love their little giving hearts.

On Friday more and more surprises.  I could not help but laugh at opening the door to find both of these our front at the same time.  Makes a girl feel special.  Or as Justin said "oh, both of your boyfriends showed up today!"
special deliveries from Alabama 
And how well they know me!  So many of my favorite things.  A gorgeous aqua blue Pandora charm. It matches the earrings my boys gave me for my first Mother's Day.  A super cute shirt (you will see that pictured later).  A yummy organic goody basket from my precious brother and Madison and the boys favorite gift?  An edible arrangement we enjoyed ALL weekend!
from my family in Alabama 

love the new charm on my bracelet

Chocolate covered fruit.. a yes every time!

the boys love "picking" the fruit.. look how many empty skewers are on his plate!

And no package is complete without a special treat for the boys too! 
power rangers!
See how one is black and one is red.  Oh the drama that ensued.  Look at how hard it is to be 3.5!!!

What does any good momma do?  Put them in the car and prayed all the way to toys r us that I could exchange the red one.  I walked in and look what was on the shelf!  Divine intervention.  One black power ranger.  Whoo hoo!  

Now back to Mother's Day people!  On Friday night I celebrated with some great mom's from my small group.  What better way to kick off mother's day weekend than with girls night out?  We had a fantastic dinner at Mia Bella and was so relaxing to just chat and eat at leisure with not a high chair in sight! And I wore my new shirt Poppy & Dee Dee sent me for Mother's Day.  

The boys literally had been asking every day for 2 weeks (since the last time) to please go eat at the "airport".  There is a small airpot near us that has a diner.  As soon as Beckett woke up he said "we going to the airport together today!!"  Fun breakfast with the family and then the American Flyers club let the boys check out one of their planes.  Pretty cool.  

$1 pancakes.  Seriously huge $1 pancakes 

pancake as big as his plate!

He said "I be in the pilot and Beckett be the co-pilot, ok?"

Beckett always prefers to ride 
Beckett buckling up 
On Saturday afternoon, Justin took the boys out for some Mother's Day shopping  "errands" and I was left at home.  In my house. In the quiet. By myself.  Hmm.  It was awesome!  After picking it up (because I cannot relax in the chaos) I took a great long bath.  And what else?  A bunch of nothing!  Sat on the couch, watched what I wanted to do, did a few things on the computer.  Couch potato.  Awesome.  I should do that more often.

Especially when this is what I see when the doorbell rings!  My loves were home.  And they could not wait to show me what they picked out for me!

What is so sweet is Justin telling me how hard they shopped for me.  (he's not impressed how well they are trained to shop) but it is really cute that they have such strong opinions about what their mommy will like.  We all know Eli has a love of orange.  So what did he bring me? Orange roses of course.

But Beckett insisted I would love rainbow flowers. (all vases are in storage unit so I had to improvise)

They picked out a cupcake for me.  They were both insistent at the grocery store that it had to be pink.  Only problem?  Pink ones only came in the multi pack.  Eli was so upset by this that he actually told the lady at the grocery store and Justin said she went in the back and made a separate pink for me.  Second problem.  He wanted one with the milano cookie on it because his mommy loves those cookies.  They only came on blue cupcakes.  So back the lady went to get a milano for my cupcake.  This story just melts my heart.  I asked Eli if he would always take care of me and he said "yep mom. even when you are really big".  :-)

Saturday evening could not have ended more perfectly.  While I bathed the boys, Justin made me dinner.  Now a long time ago when I worked the long long hours, Justin regularly made dinner but its been awhile.  He always goes above and tries to make it special.  A crab cake stuffed grilled portobello mushroom with asparagus and grilled corn (picked out by the boys). Quite impressive.

On the second Sunday of each month Justin and I serve at our church.  I love that it fell on Mother's Day this year.  It was such a blessing (and a change of pace) to have a relaxing Sunday morning at home.  The first thing that Beckett said to me was "Happy Mother's Day!" 

We cooked a great breakfast together.  Dad got to drink his coffee in his chair.  They gave me "my" gift. I am laughing as I say this because I had much commentary on my Instagram that secretly this was a Justin "from him to him gift" Ha!  I simply asked for a nice folding lounge chair to use to tan on the back porch.  What I got was not a chair, but in fact a bed.  A cot to be exact.  It's huge and I can barely lift it.  This is so on par for Justin. Can I fault him for being an over the top gift giver? No way.  There is plenty of room for all of us on the chair bed.

Then we all headed out for a family bike ride down the trail near our house.  We stopped at the park and playground for before heading back home.

We also stopped along the way for blackberry picking.  Beckett is head over heels fanatical about eating blackberries.  And picking them too!  Eli loves to pick them but hands them off for eating. None of us seem to mind!

Another Sunday gift?  Everyone napped!  There is seriously nothing better than a great Sunday nap.  Followed by a great Sunday evening service.  It is always super relaxed and the kids have so much fun.  

Daddy getting some of my loving at church 

Mother's Day 2013 - silly boys 

On the morning of Mother's Day, I posted these precious pictures and texted them to the family of the beautiful moms in our lives.

My mom with me on my christening day 

always having fun with my Ma 
  My heart was full and overflowing from spending the day with my blessings but I sure did miss my mom and Ma as I know Justin missed his special ladies too.  The sermon was a great message and the verses made my eyes tear up as I thought about generational faith.

3 I thank God, whom I serve, as my ancestors did, with a clear conscience, as night and day I constantly remember you in my prayers. 4 Recalling your tears, I long to see you, so that I may be filled with joy. 5 I am reminded of your sincere faith, which first lived in your grandmother Lois and in your mother Eunice and, I am persuaded, now lives in you also. 2 Timothy 1: 3-5 NIV

I could easily insert my grandmother's name and my mom's name as well as Justin's too.  I am grateful for the amazing women in our life and the legacy they leave us.  Being a parent is the hardest, toughest job in the whole world but the most rewarding.  I am grateful that God saw me fit for the job and I treasure the day that honors our unique position.  I love this read from Holy Experience.  If you have time visit HERE and read the whole thing.

That God had said I need somebody with a strong heart.
Strong enough for toddler tantrums and teenage testing, yet broken enough to fall on her knees and pray, pray, pray.
Someone who knows that in every hard place is exactly where you extend grace, who looks a hopeful child in the eye and says yes, even though she knows every yes means a mess but this is how you bless, who has the courage to keep letting go because she’s holding on to Me.
So God made a mother.
Happy Mother's Day Friends!

The Riley's