Beckett is FIVE!

Friday, November 16, 2018

Beckett is FIVE. Five YEARS old. It's insane. I feel like it happened over night, but at the same time feel like it suits him SO. WELL. Brian and I are both just ENAMORED by this child and unbelievably grateful that we get to raise him. The weight of that blessing is not lost on me (as I type with tears in my eyes).  So, this week, we celebrated this awesome kid.

Beckett continues to be mostly chill (although he did try his hand at pushing boundaries and throwing tantrums this year), very kind, and incredibly smart. This year he played both spring and fall soccer and took Ninja Warrior courses. He's not a natural athlete by any means, but he's learning to respect his coaches & be a team player and is having a ton of fun in the process! 

He loves cars, transformers, reading, math, building, problem-solving, wrestling with dad, playing with his sister & cousins, and any type of screen! He's super proud of himself as he becomes more independent - getting himself ready in the morning, reading books on his own, helping around the house, etc. He can even cook scrambled eggs {mostly} on his own!

Beckett hasn't had a "big" party since his First Birthday so for five years it was time to do it up right! When it came time to plan this party, he knew immediately that he wanted a Transformers party, and I knew immediately that I didn't want it in my house. So a gymnastics + Nerf War party was born!

Hosting it at a gymnastics gym was basically the best decision I've ever made. All I did was provide some cupcakes and Nerf darts, and VOILA. Epic. Party. We invited family, friends, and the kiddos from soccer and our homeschool community class. We ended up with thirty-one kids celebrating with us - which is more kids than I realized we knew! It was SO MUCH FUN to have the gym to ourselves. The coaches led them through all of the equipment and let them play for over an hour. The entire time,  Mom & Dad got to just hang out, watch the kids have a blast, and take a few pictures - it doesn't get much better than that!

After the organized equipment play, came the part that I'm pretty sure every single one of the 31 kids showed up for: NERF. WAR. Yes, it's as awesome as it sounds. I was a little bit jealous that I wasn't out there with them!

The coaches set up boundaries and barriers, split the kids into two teams, and then the kids just went Nerf Berzerk! I was actually pretty surprised at how well the kids all handled gun malfunctions, getting shot in the face, and the rest of the general chaos. I was concerned that the coaches only allowed for fifteen minutes for this part, but the obviously knew what they were doing - it was definitely enough. 

Once the kids were good and worn out (who am I kidding?), it was time for cake! To be honest, listening to our huge, awesome community sing Happy Birthday to my five year old was significantly more emotional than I care to admit, but it's just true. I am so grateful for all of the people who cared enough to show up and celebrate this kid!

One special thing we did with this party, that I'm so hoping we remember to do in the future, is encourage our guests to skip the gifts. Beckett has SO MANY TOYS and anything else he could possibly need, so we took this opportunity to let him practice giving instead of receiving. We talked to him in advance, and he agreed it would be super-cool to give all of his guests a gift instead of opening presents at his party. Each family received a gift bag with a few of Beckett's favorite things: a [robot-themed] book or two, plus enough hot wheels and play dough for each kiddo in the family. He got to hand the gift bags out as his guests left, and thank each of them for coming. It was INCREDIBLY HEART-WARMING to watch him be such a big kid!

After the party, the whole family crew headed back home for dinner and PRESENTS! With such a big family, Beckett still had MORE THAN ENOUGH gifts to open once we got home. The major themes of this years gifts were legos & building, coding, and transformers!

Even better than having a ton of friends at his party, was having a ton of FAMILY at his party. Brittany, DJ, Eli, Avaya, Devin, Katie, Jack, Will, the Hill Grandparents, the Uhll Grandparents, Grandma Beth (Brittany's mom), and Grandma Irene (Katie's Mom) were ALL IN ATTENDANCE. This is why we moved. We are so indescribably grateful for this amazing village.

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