Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Project 13 to 13: Day 9

For today, we get to see Wonder Boy acting as Leader of the Pack:

Wonder Mutt has boundless energy. And Wonder Boy has stepped up to take a leadership role in the pack when it comes to helping drain some of that excess energy. The Mutt is often at his most boisterous in the mornings before the heat saps even the most enthusiastic of hearts. So once the Boy is packed and ready for school, he will often take the furry family members outside for a little rope time.

Wonder Mutt is seriously athletic and can easily jump as high as Wonder Dad's head, but this is the Puppy Princess's favorite game in the world! She may not have the hops that the Mutt has, but she makes up for it in sheer determination. And once they have their teeth on the rope, it can take a while for Wonder Boy to wrestle it back away from them. It's good exercise for ALL THREE of them!

For our flashback today, we are only going back a few years to 2010 when a nearly 9 year old Wonder Boy was enjoying a summer of Muay Thai kickboxing lessons:

By this time, Wonder Boy had several years of karate and judo under his belt. But he really thrived under the instruction of Coach B. His hands were fast, his kicks came with surprising power for such a small guy, and he just soaked up all that Coach B could pass on. We were sad when Coach B moved on to other endeavors, but Wonder Boy learned his lessons well and still carries them with him today.

Monday, September 29, 2014

Project 13 to 13: Day 8

It's Day 8 of this little project and today Wonder Boy let me snap a photo that is SO ABSOLUTELY Wonder Boy ...

Of course, it's hard to say "no" to mom and her camera when you're asleep.

For those that don't know ... Wonder Boy isn't what you would call a "morning person." In fact, from Day 1 the Boy had his days and nights backward. He wanted to be up at night, cooing and playing when we most wanted to be asleep. It took almost 3 years to get him on a good sleep pattern, but to this day, he is much more alive later in the day than early.

Looking back to 2009, we see the Boy with his puppy princess:

Not much has changed between these two since 2009. Wonder Boy adores his sweet puppy girl. She seems to thinks of him as a litter mate, just another puppy in the pack. They play and cuddle and otherwise really seem to enjoy one another. I hope they have many more years together!

Sunday, September 28, 2014

Project 13 to 13: Day 7

For Day 7 in this project, we see Wonder Boy in his most natural state:

This snap was taken up in his "man cave" (i.e. the bonus room at the top of the stairs where he has his stash of legos, his keyboard, his video games, and all things boy). With his PlayStation controller in hand and his Nerf rifle at his side, all is right with his world.

Looking back to 2008, a few days before his 7th birthday, we see a much more animated Wonder Boy!

This snap was taken after school as we discussed plans for his upcoming birthday celebration. Just look at that hole in his smile - that will never fail to bring a grin to MY face. He's also sporting his Ecuador soccer jersey, which he wore proudly to soccer practice that night.

Big or small, Wonder Boy has always been a lot of fun. Some days, that means energy oozing out of his every pore. Other days, it means cuddling on the couch with a good book. But regardless, it's always fun!

Saturday, September 27, 2014

Project 13 to 13: Day 6

It's Day #6 and a very exciting day at that! It's Kick Off Saturday for Wonder Boy and his soccer team! WHOOP!

It was a VERY exciting game between two pretty evenly matched teams. Wonder Boy and the gang in blue came out with a 5 to 3 victory, but it was tense from start to finish. Wonder Boy played pretty well and had an assist in the first half. We are looking forward to a very fun and exciting season!

Looking back on this same day in 2007, this time we see Wonder Boy kicking back with a good book:

There is so much I love while reflecting on this photo. This snap came about a week before his 6th birthday, near the end of his first 6 weeks as a kindergarten student. The book is one he fell in love with at school: Brown Bear, Brown Bear What Do You See? This book led him to others in the same series and really kicked off his push to be a super reader. He had always loved for us to read to him, but opening to door to reading on his own was a whole new experience. And it started largely with this book.

Friday, September 26, 2014

Project 13 to 13: Day 5

Woo Hoo! It's Friday! And around these parts, we have made Friday extra special by dubbing it "No Homework Friday." Unless Wonder Boy has a very big project that cannot otherwise be completed on time, Fridays are reserved for fun activities only.

The Boy is nearing the end of his first 6 weeks marking period at school. If things hold steady, he'll be on the honor roll to start off his 7th grade year. So I think taking Fridays off for some relaxation is well in order! On this particular day, the Boy and his dad are enjoying clips from John Oliver's "Last Week Tonight" show.

Fun with Wonder Dad is nothing new though. From the earliest age, no one could get a smile from Wonder Boy like his Daddy. Dad is good for rough housing, help with history and language arts, building anything, planning and executing the best practical jokes, reading, reading, and more reading, and let's not forget nightly silly time!

I see seeds of Wonder Dad starting to grow in his Boy and few things give me greater joy. With these two, life is a constant adventure - and I, for one, wouldn't have it any other way!

Thursday, September 25, 2014

Project 13 to 13: Day 4

It's Day FOUR of Project 13 to 13 and, so far, Wonder Boy is still playing along (not always with a smile on his face, but still playing none the less).

Today we are showing off some new duds:

Last night was the Boy's first soccer practice of the season and with a new season comes a new team, a new coach, and NEW COLORS! Wonder Boy has always been a fan of blue (me too!) and while light blue might not be his favorite shade of blue, at least he didn't end up on the pink team. Wonder Boy was given the option of selecting his jersey number and he quickly called dibs on the No. 10 jersey, the same has his favorite player, Lionel Messi. We're looking forward to a VERY FUN season!

And today we're going to flash back to August of 2005 to one of my all time favorite snaps:

Oh, those eyes. Those chocolate eyes (which look darker in this b&w photo) have always been my down fall. This particular photo was taken at the end of a long day of soccer (for Wonder Dad and I) and a last minute trip to the neighborhood park for the whole family. It was a hot, sweaty August evening, but we had a blast watching Wonder Boy fly down the slide time and again. It's never easy to call a stop to that kind of fun, but at least we will always have this little snap to look back on and remember the day.

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Project 13 to 13: Day 3

Day 3 of this little project features my music man:

Each weekday he pulls out his viola just after he finishes the rest of his homework. Since neither of his parents are what you would call "musically gifted" this afternoon serenade is a special treat. Usually, I am finishing up work for the day or perhaps getting a jump start on dinner and I can think of no finer way to spend the time. But mostly, I am thankful that Wonder Boy has developed such a fierce love of music of all kinds. I have noticed that, when he is stressed or unhappy, he will often turn to his piano or his viola or even his trusty iPod for comfort. And it makes me feel good to know he has such a wonderful way to work out his worries.

In our look back today, we travel back to Sept 2004 - just a few days shy of Wonder Boy's 3rd birthday.

Wonder Dad was away on a trip, so we were taking extra pictures to email to him when I caught this one. I just love the absolute look of concentration on his face. Wonder Boy has always been this way. When he focuses on an activity of any kind, the rest of the world melts away and there is only the task at hand. In this flashback moment, it meant bed time would be hard to come by, but today it means that homework is finished in a timely fashion ... and that bed time may be hard to come by if an activity is started close to lights out. But I wouldn't have it any other way! This is just one of those things that is absolutely Wonder Boy, through and through. And he wouldn't be the awesome kiddo that he is without this characteristic.

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Project 13 to 13: Day 2

Well ... it's one day closer to Wonder Boy's 13th birthday and time for my next installment on this little project:

As you can see, the Boy is totally loaded down each day when we take off for school. Backpack full of goodies (including lunch) on his back, viola case on the right, and big, heavy binder on the left. I believe it is part of the exercise regimen at his school - you know, gotta make sure to tax those muscles if you want them to develop the big guns.

Our flash back shot for today is from September 2003:

Soccer has ALWAYS been Wonder Boy's sport and by the tender age of 23 months he was already working on his ball handling skills. I like the focused look on his face here. Soccer is no laughing matter you know!

This week the Boy will be kicking off a new season, so you can bet there will be more ball-centric photos featured as well. You just gotta check back to see what he lets me post.

Monday, September 22, 2014

Project 13 to 13: Day 1

In 13 short days, our dear Wonder Boy will turn 13, will be come a teenager... a TEENAGER, folks!

When I too was on the cusp of that milestone (back in the days of the dinosaurs, I know), it felt as if I would never get there. It just took SO LONG to grow up! As HE stands on the doorstep to his teen years, I wonder how he got here so very quickly.

So for each of the next 13 days, I intend to reflect not just on the boy and baby that he once was, but on the incredible young man he has become in only 13 short years.

First, let's look at my guy today:

This is a typical after school scene: a pile of homework and a tasty snack for added "focus." We often sit side-by-side, knocking out our work while we watch the door for signs of Wonder Dad. I enjoy this little ritual (even if the ice cream sandwich is not for me) and hope it is one we can continue for years to come.

But I also want to take a look back ... to this same day in September 2002 when Wonder Boy was approaching his first birthday.

Back then, there were no piles of homework and probably not any ice cream sandwiches (he preferred salty treats). But we still had a great spot to sit and wait for Dad to come home. And when he made it home, playing on the floor was high priority for the whole family.

Forgive me, Wonder Boy, for this sappy mommy moment (and the next 12 sappy days to follow). There is such a big part of me that wants to hold onto you so tight that you'll never age another day. But there is a MUCH BIGGER part of me that is thrilled and excited to see how independent you have become and at all the adventures that await you.