Ryan and Luke…bestest of brothers

December 18, 2010

Ryan’s 5th birthday!

Filed under: Uncategorized — by branry @ 7:59 pm

Ryan’s 5th birthday was November 1st.  So, he has Halloween the day before, then his birthday, then Christmas a little over a month later.  There is no shortage of celebrating for him.  This year,  he requested chocolate chips cookies for his birthday snack at school.  I made them.  I did not buy them which would have been SOOOO much easier.   

Ethan and I took him out to dinner.  His request was IHOP.  That boy loves bacon.  Loves. 

The following weekend he had a party at John’s Incredible Pizza.  He definitely enjoyed the bumper cars and air hockey. 

the birthday boy

Star Wars sheets!




the even bigger boy bike


at dinner with their Star Wars toys

ready to party

transformer cake made by Grandma Alves


December 15, 2010

Picture updates…hello

Filed under: Uncategorized — by branry @ 10:47 pm

After downloading 4 months of pictures, here you go!

First day of preschool 2010

after school frozen yogurt

Luke relaxing

stopping to smell the flowers

ready to ride

the big boys

last minute advice

free labor

homework - for the first time

playing in the mud

a happy mess

Ryan @ soccer

Luke asleep on Papa

working on his little pumpkin

Luke with the puppy and clone trooper

Luke in the toybox

Luke reading to Nikki

eating together

the knight and the dragon with GG

sitting together and not fighting...yet

Luke loves bags

November 1, 2010

Happy 5th Birthday Ryan!

Filed under: Uncategorized — by branry @ 9:09 pm

5 yrs ago, in Oceanside, California, at 4:55 p.m. Ryan Anthony Alger was born.  He weighed 8 lbs 2 oz and was 20 1/4 inches long.  We were waiting for him for weeks (12 days to be exact).

Dear Ryan,

Happy birthday!  You are so ‘acited’ to be 5.  You have been looking forward to this for a long time.  I on the other hand, wouldn’t mind freezing time for a while and hanging out with my little boys for a bit longer.  These five years seem to have gone in the blink of an eye.  A few years ago you couldn’t talk, and now you say things that astound us!  You are a leader at school and your teachers cannot stop saying great things about you.

You are smart, funny, sassy, and inquisitive.  You are a “what if” kind of kid and worry too much.  In the last year you have grown closer to our dogs, Nikki and Shelby, and treat them so nicely.  You pet them, say goodbye to them, and always check on them.  I’m sure you can’t believe that a few years ago you were constantly getting into trouble for being mean to them.

You love cartoons and playing Wii.  You also love anything to do with fighting.  You have guns and swords and are always making up games.  You can play with action figures at the dining table for hours.  You still love matchbox cars and transformers.  And, just like when you were much younger, you still have to bring toys in the car with you.  That is something Luke has copied.  My car is like a giant toy box!

You also enjoy spending time at Grandma and Papa’s house and going to GG’s house.  You get spoiled with cartoons, candy and toys but its ok.  We’re glad it makes you happy, and we know you need some time away from us.  Auntie Lisa takes you to soccer once a week and you are really good.

You and I are probably more similar than I realize and that is why we are constantly butting heads and having issues.  Underneath the sass you are a sweet, caring boy who just wants to play:)

Today, Auntie J and Auntie D called from New York just to say happy birthday to you while they are on vacation.  Uncle Eddie called, Aunt Lisa stopped by on her way to work, and friends and family left you emails and messages on Facebook.  You are a popular guy!

I can count on one hand the amount of time I have been apart from you for an extended period of time.  I have been around for almost every breath of your life and I love that.  I wouldn’t have it any other way.  You changed my life in the most profound way. You teach me everyday.

I love you all the days,

Love Mom

Our Knight in shining armor

p.s. I stole this from Gail’s email because she had the best picture of him in his costume 🙂  we haven’t downloaded our pics yet.  sue me.

October 18, 2010

Luke is 18 months…

Filed under: Uncategorized — by branry @ 4:05 am

love that smile!

Dear Lukie,

As of October 7th, you are 18 months old.  Daddy keeps saying you are “almost” 2 and it drives me crazy.  But, its true, you really are no longer a baby-probably haven’t been in a while.  You certainly don’t look like one!  Things have really changed in the last 6-8 months. Like your brother, once you started walking, your personality changed.  I hate to say that you were high maintenance, but YOU TOTALLY WERE.  I pretty much held you for the first 6 months of your life.  You cried everytime I put you down or tried to change your diaper.  Crawling helped, but walking was your ticket to freedom! 

Your sleeping went back and forth from about 6 months but it wasn’t your fault.  We were dealing with your allergies and asthma and coughing.  But, since you turned a year you have been sleeping all night and taking scheduled naps.  You are so much happier (we all are).   

You are picking up new words all the time and I ususally understand you.  Your daddy and I are not used to having an 18 month old talk to us so this is all new for us but we love it (most of the time). 

You love books.  LOVE.  You could care less about the story, but point at all the pictures and want us to tell you what they are.  You are obsessed with dogs.  Our dogs, other dogs you see, dogs in books, even dogs you hear barking.  Like your brother, you enjoy cars.  Right now you are pushing them off the end of the couch, collecting them, and them pushing them off again.

You also love spotting airplanes in the sky and hearing motorcycles.  Watching you discover new things is fascinating.  One of our favorite things to do is watch you dance.  You are a machine!  You enjoy all kinds of music and will dance as soon as you hear it.  You bring a smile to all of our faces and we love you so much.  Though your brother often complains about you, he recently started asking you to play with him.  You follow him around and want to be just like him.  Throwing the cushions on the floor and jumping on them is one of your favorite things to do together.  You will try and copy anything he does–which is usually dangerous.  I have to keep an eye on you constantly.  You are the king of fat lips, bloody mouth, and bonking your head. 

I have to admit you are kind of a mama’s boy.  You cry when I leave, or if you think I’m leaving.  You are fine, I promise.  You follow me to the bathroom, upstairs, to the laundry room…you want me in your sight. 

Everynight we read Pat the Bunny Goodnight and it is my absolute favorite time.  You point to all the pictures, we wish for happiness and health on the stars, and then we say goodnight to the bunny.  Then you put your head on my shoulder and give me the best hug. 

Happy 18 months Lukie Boo.  Thank you for changing our lives.

September 20, 2010

I am 35

Filed under: Uncategorized — by branry @ 9:04 pm

On September 7th I turned 35.  On the 10th my dad turned 59.  Another nice day for swimming at Eddie’s.  We had a great spaghetti and lasagna dinner, along with my favorite apple pie (home made by grandma).  Ethan and I are going to San Francisco next weekend to celebrate without the kids.  Woo hoo.

this kid needs to quit growing

Luke and Oakley

this is what my kids do

oh the joy of trying to get a family picture

September 16, 2010

Father’s Day – belated (because I keep finding pictures)

Filed under: Uncategorized — by branry @ 4:31 am

Every once in a while pictures get downloaded to the laptop.  Sometimes I even look at them!  Tonight I downloaded some pictures from the September birthday family event (my birthday and my dad’s) and got to looking in some old folders.  Who knew?  Father’s day pictures…amazing.  We celebrated at Eddie’s house so the kids could swim (I think he is officially the summer party house).  I think we might have had spaghetti, though we could have had ribs.  I really don’t remember.  We’ve done a whole lot of swimming and eating there this summer.

getting better at these family of 4 pics

the boys with their Papa

the Alves kids with our dad


September 9, 2010

Luke and his words

Filed under: Uncategorized — by branry @ 11:26 pm

I was thinking I needed to write all of Luke’s words in his baby book, but then thought this would be quicker.  I plan to print out the blog into a “book” so the kids will be able to read it anyway.  So, at 17 months this is what we have, kinda in order 🙂

Uh oh (totally his first word)


Doggy (dada and doggy sound a lot a like just like when Ryan was little)

Ball (very clear)


Mam or Mem (thats me!)

More (and he uses it correctly)

Hot (it sounds a little more like “heh” but he says it whenever I put him in the car to say his seat is hot

He also says “mine” but usually doesn’t use it correctly.  I’m not sure what he is trying to say.  He also said his cousin Clara’s name on vacation when he saw her everyday.  A few times Ethan said he heard him say Ryan but I haven’t heard it.  Ryan is a hard name to say.  Ryan actually called himself “AYION” for a long time. 


No (usually accompanies Mom)



He can also sign the word “please.”  Grandma Alger taught him that.  Instead of signing at the top of his chest he does it on his belly, but its close enough and very cute.

looks like such a big boy

Thanks to my friend Aurora for taking this picture at the park.  You can’t even tell his dad gave him a terrible haircut!

August 19, 2010

More summer fun!

Filed under: Uncategorized — by branry @ 4:22 am

This year we tried private swim lessons for Ryan and it was amazing.  His teachers were truly awesome.  He was going under water on the first day!  Previously, Ryan was very timid in the water, even with a floatie on.  He never went under water.  By the end of the first week he was able to do almost half the length of the pool in ‘3 style’ aka freestyle.  He made huge progress in the 5 or 6 weeks he had lessons and was even learning to dive.  He is confidant in the water and rarely uses his floatie anymore.  We are so proud of him!

We spent a week in Bass Lake with Ethan’s dad and sisters.  Its always hard traveling with kids, especially young ones like Luke, but we had a great time and survived the early morning wake ups, no naps and Luke’s screaming.  I took my own car so Luke and I left early to give Ryan and Ethan some “no baby” time and for everyone to rest their ears.  One of these days we’ll take a vacation without the kids! 

learning to dive

his teachers brought cookies every friday

tired and way too big for a bottle

first cast at Bass Lake

Ryan's first time fishing - with a Star Wars pole

Ryan and Derek pushed this log around for a long time


one of our stops on a hike to some falls

Ethan carried him most of the hike because I've had a sore ankle for a while...just found out its fractured

Luke was so tired! We would have rested longer but there were mosquitoes

he just couldn't understand why he couldn't drive the boat by himself

Luke hated the boat and only lasted a few hours


some of the gang...the rest of us were smart and stayed on the boat!

driving through Yosemite, if he wasn't screaming he was pointing out the window

Ryan in charge of the camera

a little too close for me

all 4 of us - I can't believe it! (the backpack is making me look way fatter)

Ethan, Ryan, Derek and Karl climbed up closer to the falls

trying to take our own picture

Catching up…

Filed under: Uncategorized — by branry @ 2:27 am

Summer is over and Ryan officially went back to school yesterday!  I can still only download pics from our desktop so its hard to update the blog but I will try and be better.  Everyone is always asking for recent pics of the boys.  These pictures were taken in June/July.  Summer really seemed to go by quickly.  It doesn’t seem like we did much until right at the end but when I look back at the pictures we seem to have been always busy.  Ryan rocked at his private swim lessons (pics in another download) and played soccer.  He finished up Babe Ruth tball and participated in Junior Giants through our city.  We went on our yearly trip to Half Moon Bay and spent time at Bass Lake (near Yosemite).  Ethan and I celebrated our 11 yr wedding anniversary on August 14th by unpacking from the Bass Lake trip.  Luke picked up a few words this summer and still wants to be a big kid just like his brother.  Enjoy!

at the Portuguese Festa parade - yes I occasionally dress them alike

my boys

enjoying the pool

on the way to see his first movie at a theater

Luke loves the tunnel

he is so goofy

mommy did not approve but this is Ryan's first bb gun

at Ryan's tball pizza party

this kid makes the biggest mess

who me?

gigantic messes

some playing together but it doesn't last long

Luke's first time at the beach

he will not stop doing that crazy fake smile


yes, proof I was there

that is so gross! but he had a great time.

5 min after leaving Half Moon Bay


June 8, 2010

Ryan’s preschool graduation

Filed under: Uncategorized — by branry @ 4:13 pm

We decided not to make a big deal this year about preschool graduation/promotion because Ryan is going back again next year.  With his late birthday we decided to wait another year to start kindergarten.  So he technically did not promote but we wanted him to take part in the program with all of his friends.  A lot of the kids he has been with for two years.  Ethan and I went to the program and then took him out to dinner to celebrate.

displaying some of his attitude

taking our own picture

with Ms. Tami

at Applebees

We didn’t get very good photos of the program because we were video taping.  We also weren’t seated in a clear view of Ryan.  They sang songs and each kid had a short speaking part.  Ryan knew his lines but was embarassed when he was his turn and he said directly into the microphone “I don’t know it!”  His teacher helped him a little and he said his line nice and clear.  Seeing them march in with their little caps on was too cute.  Next year he’ll do it again and it will feel much more real for me.  He will be 5.5 yrs old and on his way to kinder.  We are so proud of his accomplishments.  He has truly blossomed the last two years of preschool.  We thank the wonderful teachers who take time to work with him when he needs some extra help.  His writing has improved dramatically.  He is more confident and making friends.  Ryan cannot wait to start again in August.

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