All I want for Christmas…

“It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas!”

Yes, feel free to sing that in your head…it’s ok, I did.

This weekend’s mission with the boys was to get our Christmas Tree, and with the addition of some snow, what better way to enjoy it than taking some pictures too!

So after a slight detour to Kohl’s to pick out some items to complete their outfits, we set out in the mild 29° weather through the tree farm! Which shout out to Hansen Tree Farm and their amazing location!

As the boys and I were walking through the endless rows of trees, the conversations were abundant and completely random. Discussing footprints, animals tracks, different kinds of trees, why some trees were purple, chemicals and ingredients in hand warmers, what they want Santa to bring them, tractor rides, and the list goes on and on.

But it made me think about about one thing from my childhood growing up.

Family.

I don’t remember the toys I got from Santa, the gifts from my parents, the latest craze that every kid seemed to have after Christmas vacation was over.

I remember the home cooked meals that Grandma would spend all day and night preparing which no one could reproduce. I remember the nonstop playing with all of my cousins that we saw only a handful of times a year. I remember the staying up all night building forts with every pillow, sleeping bag and blanket we could get our hands on. I remember long car rides to and from Chicago to Wisconsin.  I remember my mom making breakfast for my brothers and I and building snow igloos using 5 gallon buckets and freezing water just to have a place to play.

I remember being with family.

I’ll bet money that 20 years ago I would have a different perspective, but as I reflect over the past as I get older, I’d take family over anything else in a heartbeat.

Material things are replaceable. Family is not. Would I be heartbroken and upset if my camera were to get lost, stolen or broken? Oh absolutely! I’d probably even cry. But I could always get another.

So as the holiday season continues, I know that I can always rely on family and friends. I know that I can cherish every second I have with the boys and capture the moments of their silly faces when dad makes them always take pictures, which I might add, they really seemed to like the vests.

I hope everyone is fortunate to have someone to spend the holidays with and be able to live, love, and laugh and know that in a moments notice, anything can happen.

Merry Christmas everyone!

 

 

Meet the Osterman Family

For those of you who have lived in Minnesota long enough, you know better than anyone that one day it will be 50º and sunny, and the next day it would turn to 10º with mother nature covering the ground in beautiful white snow.

Luckily for this adventure, the Osterman Family and I were able to roam the forest of Elk River in 40º weather!  There was mud, there were laughs, and there were two boys who may or may not have run off into the woods and gotten a little lost, but all in all there was no blood shed.

I have known this family for a few years and have grown pretty fond of them.  You could say they bring out the little kid in me and honestly I’m not entirely sure how these two parents keep up!  The energy of these four kids alone would be enough to put any triathlon athlete to sleep!  Speaking of… we need another night of Ghosts in the Grave Yard at your house!

Anyways I can’t thank you enough for the smiles, laughs and crazy photo adventure!

Meet the Amundson Family

Many people walk in and out of our lives on a daily basis and whether it’s planned or pure fate, I believe there is always a purpose and a reason.

If you’re lucky enough to know the Amundson family, you already know they are a strong dedicated team.  They are family driven with high morals with love that overflows to anyone who steps foot along their path.

I was beyond grateful to meet them 9 years ago, and even more blessed to have my two sons be cared and loved by this family.  Words cannot express enough how much of an impact you have made on my boys, and no doubt to any other child who has been under your roof.

You all are truly amazing and I want to thank you for letting me spend the afternoon with you…in the 40º weather…which for Michael was extremely cold, because he got too fond of the warm weather in Costa Rica!

Much love to you all 🙂

 

 

 

 

Meet the Avery Family

Last night the snow couldn’t have made a better debut to set the scene for this morning’s photos.  The mom of these two little rockstars set in motion weeks ago to get their pictures taken, and the days have been counting down since.  After a few exchanges of what they should wear, where should we go, I think in the end, we couldn’t of asked for better scene!  Thank you, as it was a pleasure to capture the moment, aside from it being so cold!

Happy 3rd Birthday to my Baby Boy

1,095 days ago Hudson was welcomed into this wonderful world.  His brother Bennett was so excited to meet his new baby brother.  Family traveled countless miles away to get a glimpse of his first smile.  And aside from the little scare that sent Hudson back in the hospital for about 10 days, everything worked out in the end, and the little champ pulled through like the rockstar he is.

Time flies so quickly when you have kids.  For those of you who don’t have any, it’s a feeling you’ll never understand until it happens.  So you may have to take my word for it.

There are many milestones I look back on.  Sitting up on their own.  Crawling.  Standing. Walking.  First words.  The list goes on and on…and just when I thought that Bennett would never be topped with his silliness and humor, in rolls Hudson and steals the show…well sometimes.

Now don’t get me wrong, I love BOTH of my sons equally.  I’d do anything for either of them, but what I believe most parents of multiple children can attest to is how different children who come from the same parents can be!  It’s truly amazing.  The personalities grow and evolve.  Traits from the parents, habits learned from their older or younger sibling. It’s just puts me an awe on different they become as they grow into themselves.

So today Hudson, Bennett and I celebrated Hudson’s wonderful 1,095th day on this earth.  We saw some aliens, we played games, we opened presents, and even ate cupcakes that dad baked.  *side note, I’m not much of a baker, but the little girl down the street said they were delicious.  So i’ll take that as a win.

All in all I’m one lucky dad.  I couldn’t ask for anything more than to spend the day with my two little show stoppers.  Happy Birthday Hudson.  You and your big brother will always make me proud.

Hudson Turns 3

 

Meet Dylan

So i’ll be honest.  I have no idea who Dylan is, until now. He came along with the Hanlon crew and had his game face on for some photos.

I few things I learned about him.  He’s definitely smarter than me.  He’s among the top 5 of his senior class, and wants to be a doctor.  And when you have him sit on a bench, he makes it look like it was made for my children.

See… it wasn’t as painful as you thought it was going to be. Great job Dylan! It was a pleasure to work with you and i’m glad you were along for the ride!