You may know him as Tom, but I know him as Daddy and my kids know him as Papa, last month he flew across the country to visit Texas and spend some much needed time with his "Jack" and Lily. When my mom asked me to write a guest spot on her blog about his trip my first thought was "Oh no I did not take enough pictures." I think you are about to see that thought was wrong. I am my mother's daughter.
Johnny/Jack and Lily were counting down the days and hours until Papa's arrived, I cannot put into words how much they love him, how much they miss him and how excited they get with the thought of a visit.
Even if I tried I could not keep them back from running straight at him.
That longed for hug.
I am not even sure what she had to tell him, but I am sure it was very very important.
Can you see his eyes smiling? That is something I will always remember from when I was a child.
We had 4 days of Papa time and took full advantage, everyday was full!! From shopping to getting hair cuts to celebrating Johnny's 6th birthday.
While her brother got a haircut Lily refused to lose an opportunity to sit with Papa.
The kids really wanted to show off to Papa their new karate skills. Yes that is a 6 year old and a 3 year old ready to kick butt.
White belts but learning so fast I was having Olympic day dreams.
Oh my goodness the cuteness!
Whenever Papa sat down for a rest he had two little sweeties crawling all over him, I don't think he minded.
Breakfast out, a norm with Papa, it was such a treat, by the last day even the kids noticed "we eat breakfast out a lot with Papa"
There is an awesome local store called Sattleblanket that sells pretty much anything southwestern you could want. Cowboy boots, hats, saddles, belts, and souvenirs, Mexican pottery, blankets and pretty much anything! Papa loves it, never leaving empty handed and Johnny and Lily got new cowboy hats for their Easter outfits.
After a little shopping and quality time it was time to celebrate our big boy turning 6!! He wanted a Mad Scientist party, really he wanted to blow something up, like they do on Myth Busters, we compromised and he loved it.
Scientist tags for all the guests, giving them a Mad Scientist name, Dr. Little Sister.
The bouncy house Grams and Pops got for Johnny's birthday last year, it is the best!! Makes a simple party a blast, no kid doesn't love a bouncy house. Always the first stop.
CANDY BAR, but it is scientific, so that makes it okay.
Birthday cake time, Johnny's favorite, green with chocolate icing and green sprinkles for my St Patrick's day baby, Lucky Little Monkey.
No matter how much you plan they always end up just playing together like any other day, wonderful.
We did honor Johnny's wish to blow something up, diet soda with mentos.
The kids loved it!!!So cheap and so easy! Even the Dad's loved it.
The party was a crazy day, real chaos! So much fun, but it was great to spend the next day with just us and Papa shopping and enjoying the area.
Our usual breakfast out was a local Mexican restaurant that has a buffet!! Lots of typical breakfast food and then lots of traditional Mexican food. I don't know what they are called but it was all delicious.
Flea markets are awesome and look what I found! Real treasure!! Got Papa a belt buckle and Lily some cocs, that is a good day.
Then the day came, and suddenly 8 pounds of monkey became 55 pounds of 6 year old.
Johnny learned how to salute, we have a baby picture of him in Daddy's jacket.
Mad Scientist doing experiments.
Happy 6th birthday hansom boy, thank you for making me a Mommy.
Grams and Pops always send something super special. This puppet stage is a huge hit! And what a special treat Grams and was on the phone with Papa with Johnny saw this gift for the first time, she got to enjoy
I like to give the kids a hand made craft gift every year, something special as a keepsake. Johnny has a large stuffed snake collection. So I picked fabrics that point out his interests this year, dragons, science, army, dinosaurs, St. Patrick day of course.
Gifts for our birthday boy from his family all across the country, so much love.
First of many plays to be shown.
Lily always loves to help open presents, more puppets from Grams and Pops.
And finally a toy he had been asking for for 6 months, a stuffy, and large stuffed animal without the stuffing so you can hide your other stuffed animals in it...he just loves stuffed animals.
And then there was a gift I was just as excited for him to get as he was to get it. His Aunt Chel knit him a Dallek! An alien villain from a show we like to watch together called Dr. Who. Traveling through space and time and battling to save the world. The Dallek says "Exterminate" and Johnny loves it. Thank you Aunt Chel, GREAT job!
Even Lily got Johnny a gift, how sweet is that? It is a dragon Hot Wheel.
One of Johnny's favorite gifts is this Switch and Go T-Rex that responds to your voice. Thank you Grandma Sharon, GG, and Grandpa George, he played with it straight for 2 weeks.
Hugging his super special evil dallek.
Playing with his talking, transforming awesome dino t-rex.
And posing for Mommy with the snake she made.
That is the birthday face I love, green pancakes with syrup, whip cream and sprinkles. He kept laughing and telling me he couldn't eat it all, he didn't.
It was Papa's last day with us, and that made us sad but a trip to the outlets makes it super fun. The Disney outlet made Johnny feel so special, he got a pin and a crown and a large stuffed Sven (from Frozen) which he has wanted since before the movie came out, Papa made another dream come true.
Special birthday lunch at Pizza Hut buffet, again the workers made him feel so special, they made a special pizza with no cheese, but covered in pineapple and ham, his favorite.
After just a little shopping we headed back to post for some St. Patty's Day parting and a movie. Mommy had to have her green beer, beer is so much better green!
One Papa's favorite things to do with the kids is movies, they love it too. Mr Peabody, great movie, even if the kids did not get the awesome puns.
To complete an awesome birthday celebration we all went out to dinner at Texas Land and Cattle, Steaks all around, and it was so good. Perfect for Papa's last evening with us too.
And what would birthday dinner be without birthday cake? Well just a boring dinner. There is that awesome smile again, that always makes my day.
Sharing with Papa :)
This 4 day visit was one I will always treasure. I don't think I can put into words why it was so wonderful, but I do know that after Papa left we missed him and all of our Maryland family more then we ever had before, we never wanted him to leave.