Monday, February 27, 2012

On Losing: Lincoln's Birthday Weekend

This weekend, my mom, dad, and little sister Riley came in to town to celebrate a very special occasion - Lincoln's 1st Birthday!! :)

On Saturday, we all went to the awesome Tucson Rodeo together. I'm thinking this might have to become a new tradition of ours - it was a very worthwhile event!
The only picture of all of us together.
 Lincoln's hair looks so red in this picture. It's not really that color though. Is it bad that I wish it was sometimes? Haha. It's ok, he's got enough of Daddy's handsome cowboy charm to carry him through life. ;)
Baby Lincoln and Daddy Squire
The smell of a rodeo includes earthy dirt, horse poop, and faintly sweet cigarette smoke. Everyone wears denim, plaid or tight fitting t-shirts, and their boots and cowboy hats if they have them. It is entertaining to guess who is playing dress-up, and who is really country. You know what I'm saying?
A buckin' bronco!
*Side note: My Grandpa Shanks used to ride "buckin' horses an' bulls" as he always used to say. But, my Granny Shanks "let him know" that if he wanted to continue his rodeo antics that she wouldn't stick around. So, he gave it all up to be with her. I liked to think of my grandpa during the rodeo. With all the gasping I did just during the 2 1/2 hour show though, I can see why getting grandpa to quit the rodeo was important to my gran.

 The girls at the rodeo! Riley felt silly wearing a cowboy hat.
 Lincoln staying close to mom and dad at the rodeo:
 My fam:
 The name of the game when riding buckin' broncos or bulls? Stay on for at least 8 seconds. Some were successful:
Almost there! - 7.5 seconds.
Ridin' with style at 6.2 seconds.
 Some, not so much. Though, I cant say I blame them. As the lady behind us kept yelling, "That's alotta bull!" Haha. She was most definitely right about this one. He was mean.
Being thrown off at 2.3 seconds.
 After a couple hours up in bleachers out in the sun, Lincoln was tuckered out.

The next day, was the big day - LINCOLN'S 1ST BIRTHDAY!!! Here are some photo highlights:
A banner for the birthday boy. I really need to get a Cricut. Haha. ;)
 All decked out - balloons and streamers. When Lincoln woke up he kept pointing at all the decorations in the house. He loved the balloons on his chair and scattered around the floor of our living room.
The couple of days leading up to Lincoln's birthday, he had a bit of a clear runny nose, but it broke out into full force sickness on his birthday. :( He had a cough, a runny/stuffy nose, and a mild fever. So he skipped out on church on Sunday and stayed home to rest with Mimi and Riley while the rest of us went to Sacrament meeting. The rest of the day? We nursed him back to health - with love, cuddles, presents and some birthday cake! Hey! If Julie Andrews can pass off songs about sugar helping medicine go down, then surely there must be some wiggle room in there for feeding my sick son copious amount of confetti cake on his birthday! . . .
Playing with the birthday boy - ready to open presents!
Riley had been preparing - and performed - a little dance for Lincoln to the tune, "Stuck Like Glue." It brought out Lincoln's first big smile of the day:
Lincoln's first birthday cake turned out pretty decent - considering the fact that I lost all my cake decorating tips in our move to Tucson. I just decorated it with quart-sized ziplocs that I taped over at an angle, and cut at the tips to pipe and write.
Ziploc bags without cake tips for decorating - not perfect, but they work.
Lincoln's first birthday cake:
Lincoln was funny about not really wanting to touch his cake. He mostly just took bites off without touching the cake with his hands. 

 Here's a short clip of his experience:
video

What you aren't seeing in this video clip is our blowing honking birthday blowers and Lincoln's subsequent crying. Whoops! Exnay on the birthdayblowersnay for next year I guess. After the scary experience with the birthday blowers, Lincoln decided it was time for a nice long nap.

Since he hadn't gotten into his cake too much, we decided to save it for him for after dinner to give it another go. Round two with the cake? Lincoln came. He conquered. And he even gave a little victory speech when he was done:
 Lincoln - 2 Birthday Cake - 0
Here is Lincoln all freshly bathed and ready for bed - but not before a quick snapshot with grandpa Elsmore first!
Ready for bed after a long eventful day. :)
 After Lincoln went to bed, Riley and I had a "sistas" fashion shoot:



 And then we all had a big balloon fight with all of Lincoln's birthday balloons. Mostly the battle was everyone else against Squire. Not so much because he is the in-law but because he was the instigator. Only about half of the balloons made it out of the spontaneous battle. 

  video

Monday, Lincoln felt up enough to go shopping with Mimi, Grandpa and Aunt Riley for an hour while I finished up my last pottery class. Lincoln really liked riding in the taxi at the mall:
 Jogging stroller kid is in the fast lane!
And then, this last picture? This is the moment when the whole weekend just went sour. Absolutely sour!
See Lincoln grinding his teeth? He feels the same way I do . . .
You see after lunch at California Pizza Kitchen, my family hugged us in the parking lot and said something horrible to us . . . "Goodbye!" I offered my own bed, to make anything they wanted for dinner, to pay them all the money in my checking account - and they still said "NO!' when I asked begged them to stay one more night!! Dad used some silly excuse about having to get back to work or something like that. Isn't that just terrible?! I'm still crying about it. I miss them. Lincoln misses them. Squire misses them. *Sigh.* Our guest bedroom is back to the way it was - empty. And this magical birthday weekend is over! They didn't even stay for my birthday (Leap Day)!! Or Squire's (March 12th)!!! What more could we have offered to change their minds? Sometimes, I guess you just lose.

Funny thing about losing though . . . it hurts the most when what you are losing, is what's most great. No, not like choosing to lose rodeo riding in exchange for a beautiful wife and large family. Or losing some cake decorating tips in a move to start medical school. Or losing in the race against some kid in a jogging stroller when you weren't really even racing anyways. But, losing your family members to distance (or death) - that hurts. That's just one of those losses, where - you simply, lose. . . At least, we had a bit of that greatness this weekend even if we're hurting now that they're gone.

We miss you family! COME BACK SOON!!

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