Guess who is turning 12?!

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Baby Rusty :)

Baby Rusty 🙂

12 years ago today we were blessed with our third child. Rusty was delivered at 4:42 pm and weighed in at 8lbs 14oz. What a blessing these past 12 years have been!

Preparations for Rusty’s birthday began last week, on Friday, when Rusty was invited to a friend’s home for a sleepover. The other three kids decided to take advantage of Rusty’s absence and work on their homemade gifts for him. All of my kids love to give/make gifts for the people they care about and I love watching the enthusiasm and effort they put into their gift giving efforts. I am grateful that they have learned, at their young age, the joy of giving.

Molly decided she wanted to make Rusty a treat and finally settled on the idea of making homemade flavored popcorn after finding a recipe online. Using different flavored jello packets she made three different flavors of “caramel popcorn.” Knowing Rusty’s love of sweets I have no doubt this gift will be a huge hit! 🙂

Molly making orange flavored popcorn.

Molly making orange flavored popcorn.

The finished gift.

The finished gift.

Gracie decided to craft a gift for Rusty’s birthday. She decided to do something with a Minecraft theme. (The computer game that Rusty is into right now) She found a website online that showed how to make shoes that look like the creepers from the game. Using her babysitting money she bought white, fabric loafers and drew a grid on the shoes. She then used fabric markers to color them in. It took her a few hours but the finished result was impressive. 🙂

Gracie working on her gift for Rusty.

Gracie working on her gift for Rusty.

Gracie's finished gift.

Gracie’s finished gift.

Tyler used his allowance to buy Rusty’s gift at the Dollar Store a few weeks earlier. ( He bought him packaged cinnamon buns.) 🙂 When he saw the girls making gifts, however, he decided he wanted to make something for Rusty too. With Gracie’s help he pulled out legos and made a parking lot/road for Rusty’s lego cars.

The tricky part, once all the projects were completed, was then keeping it a secret until Thursday.

Tyler working on his gift for Rusty..

Tyler working on his gift for Rusty..

Thursday morning the celebration began! The tradition in our family is to wake the birthday kid up with singing and a piece of birthday cake. Because Toby had to leave early for work this early morning rendition of “Happy Birthday” took place at 6:00 am. Everyone decided to just stay up after that so our morning began earlier than typical. One of the perks of being the birthday kid is that if your birthday falls on a school day you get the day off school so while the other kids worked on schoolwork Rusty was able to enjoy a lazy play day.

"Happy Birthday to You!"

“Happy Birthday to You!”

Halfway through morning school Tyler came running to show me his tooth. He has been working at pulling out his loose tooth for days and was excited it finally came out. He thinks it is pretty cool that the Tooth Fairy will be visiting our home on Rusty’s birthday.

Tyler lost tooth #2!

Tyler lost tooth #2!

Rusty couldn’t wait for Dad to get home from work so that he could open his gifts and the celebration could begin! When Toby arrived home we let Russ open his gifts before we headed out for the evening. He was thrilled with the gifts from his siblings. His gift from us was a gun, his own hunting rifle/shotgun. This year is a big birthday, one that Rusty has been looking forward to since he was a little boy, because turning 12 means that he can now go hunting with Dad. This Saturday he will attend an all-day hunter safety course. He has been reading up on the test materials all week in preparation for his hunter safety class.

Rusty opening his orange safety vest...his other gift from Mom and Dad. :)

Rusty opening his orange safety vest…his other gift from Mom and Dad. 🙂

After opening gifts we headed off to dinner. Rusty’s restaurant pick for dinner was Fire Mountain (a homestyle food buffet.) It worked out well that his birthday fell on Thursday, Family Fun Night at Fire Mountain. On Thursday evenings kids eat for .99 so that combined with discount coupons we had for the adults we were able to enjoy dinner at Rusty’s favorite restaurant for a great price.

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After dinner we went to see a movie. Rusty wanted to see Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs 2. At the end of the night Rusty declared it a perfect birthday. Happy birthday, Rusty. We couldn’t ask for a better son!

"Happy birthday, Rusty!"

“Happy birthday, Rusty!”

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