This birthday boy loves balloons, and he chose this outfit himself, because they were good party clothes, as he said. We had a wonderful party for Jack's birthday. Beforehand we had asked him what he wanted to do: have some kids over, or go out to dinner, but he said he wanted to invite everyone and have a BIG party. So we did! It was a lot of people, and a lot going on, but Jackson was a gentleman to the end. Happy Birthday to my favorite five year old. I love your caring and responsible nature that you mix with boyish fun. Here is a catalogue of the party in pictures: mostly it's about good food, good friends, and good fun! Three girls, each seven months apart, playing on the swingset. From the left, Elizabeth, Marilyn, and Caroline. Two cute mamas: Lindsey and Betsy. Will enjoying the nice weather (finally!) on the back porch. Phil made a book for Jackson and Caroline, starring them and Millard the Moose. Here he reads Caroline her copy while Trystan and Papa listen. The Beltran's came! Trace was given a smoker the day before, by a friend who was frustrated with it, so he made us two kinds of ribs, barbequed and smoked, along with whole chickens, and New York steaks. It was all accompanied by corn on the cob, coleslaw, beans, and smoked nuts. Yum! Andrew and Taylor were there, and Andrew brought Jack his own pair of Wrangler's as a gift. He can be a real cowboy now! We opened gifts with those who had little kids first, and spread the rest of the gifts over the course of the evening. Here Jackson and Marilyn, good friends, are opening her gift. Jack and Phil reading his copy of the book Phil made. Grandpa Chuck and Grandma Caroline gave Jack a sleeping bag, with a map to going camping in the backyard. He's slept in it most nights since, but in his bedroom. Here his cousin Natalie helps him try it out. Chuck's brother Ben and his wife Roz happened to be in town on their way to a grandson's graduation, so they made it to Jack's party too. It was good to see them! This is a bunch of Fike boys: Ted, Andrew, Tim, and Jack. Do they look related? Dave reads Jack his pirate birthday card. The birthday boy at the end of the evening in his new Giant's hat. Happy Birthday Jack!
Shoot! I've been uploading these pictures to the blog for days (anyone have any tips for a faster way to upload them?), and they're not all here. I'll publish this anyway, with more to come--like the pictures of the amazing quilt that Aunt Becky made him. It's everybody's new favorite blanket.