Friday, July 31, 2009

Crazy Weather

One of the many exciting things of living in Colorado Springs is the weather. It is an honest topic of conversation, not just a filler or pleasantry. And I love it. We've had some really fun hail storms this week. On the left is Justin and Ryan collecting hail into bags. They played in the hail for at least 30 minutes and were totally soaked. I was surprised they liked being out in it. The girls had no interest this time, but they usually love to jump on the trampoline with the hail and collect it to freeze it. Notice the girls' skirts in the picture. I made those, yes I did. A close-up picture would prove that I made them, but they look pretty good in a dark, blurry picture. The girls love them. And I really enjoyed having a project. Turns out I can add "seamstress" to my list of talents...

The older girls

We go through a lot of these baggies and ties catching bugs. I took the kids walking on the Santa Fe trail. We've had much cooler weather this week so it was very enjoyable to be out collecting bugs, looking at flowers, and watching trains. The 3 older walked and Mia rode in the stroller. We made it an entire hour. I was very impressed with my kids. I love doing these kind of things. It felt so amazing to make it an hour with very minimal whining.

If you need a smile...

I took the kids to the zoo this week. For the rest of the day I chuckled everytime I looked at Justin. He has this effect on me without the paint, but it definately added. Justin is into saying, "whatever" after everything and "what is that in the heck?" This little boy brings me immense joy.

Ashley's Party

This year for Ashley's party we decided to try something smaller. So she invited 3 of her friends and we went to Build a Bear and shopped, came home and ate pizza and played games, and then watched a movie. It was great fun. They are cute girls. It is still beyond crazy to me that Ashley is 7 and so grown up. She is just a wonderful person too and I feel so grateful to have her in my life. She has an amazing heart and senses people's moods and wants to help them feel better. She has no guile and just loves openly those who are around her. I love this 7 year old!

Friday, July 17, 2009

Bear Lake

Most of the fun for Mia was eating lots of chips and candy. She didn't like having her hands dirty so I put a bucket of clean water out and she would eat chips, get sandy, then rinse her hands, and dry them off on a towel. Ashley spent a lot of time collecting shells.

Katelyn loved digging in the sand with her cousins. Mia hated it. I gave her back her binky during the day so she would be quiet. She loved sitting in Eden's crib with her binky.

Justin LOVED pushing trucks in the sand with cousin Joshua, who was happy to meet Justin's every need. It was so nice for me. I could go full hours without seeing Justin. He was a happy guy.

Pretty girls in the sand. They are in their clothes because we drove home straight from the beach that day. It was a long drive home. Justin said, "I never ever want to drive there again." I said, "You will want to drive back to Bear Lake next year." Justin - "No, I want our cousins to drive here to see us!"

Ashley's birthday spanking machine. Abby holding Mia with masks we made at Ashley's party. Mia wore this mask the entire evening and loved it.

Most of the cousins wearing birthday masks. Justin decorating his bear lake shirt.

Ashley in her mask and Katelyn decorating her shirt. Katelyn had this cheesy smile on her face the entire trip. She loves being around her cousins and family. It's so great for me to watch.

The birthday girl is 7!! We made a spaghetti and meatball dinner with two jello cakes. She was also the most creative and serious about decorating her shirt.

Mia also got to decorate and wear a shirt. It was too good to be true for her. My mom with Ashley and with Katelyn.

Some more highlights I forgot:
1. The girls doing front flips off the diving board at the country club.
2. Katelyn cuddling up to her 14 year old boy cousin while watching a movie and me finding them on her bed playing a Barbie DS game. Cousin Thomas is the nicest boy ever to oblige Katelyn.
3. Justin riding bikes on the deck with Sara and Anna and then playing babies.
4. Mia deciding she likes to be tickled by my dad.
5. Ashley knee boarding behind the waverunner.
6. Katelyn giggling for hours about how she got to drive the waverunner.
7. Justin deciding the waverunner wasn't too scary to sit on.
8. Getting my van stuck in the mud and waiting hours for my dad's truck to come rescue me.
We had such a great time.

Utah Trip

The kids on the 4th. The girls didn't get to bring their bikes in the car. Just Justin. Talk about the golden boy, right?! They were very understanding.

Here we are hiking to donut falls. They loved the hike. It was short, easy, and pleasant. Katelyn was obsessed with Grandpa Egbert. She wouldn't let him out of sight and was very affectionate with him. It was fun to watch my usually reserved child feel so comfortable.

We had a great trip to Utah for the 4th of July and then for my annual trip to Bear Lake with my sisters. Hans drove me out there, which was so nice. We tried the 4 am start, which I am still not sure about. The nice thing is that we get to Salt Lake so early in the day. Justin took a full hour to fall back asleep because he was so excited and then with the 5:30 am sunrise, it was too light in the car for anyone to sleep in too late. They were tired though and so happy to stay in their carseats for the entire time. We made the trip in 8 hours even. Can't beat that. We spent Thursday at my parents and had a bonfire and roasted marshmallows by their creek. Friday we spent with Egberts hiking donut falls and then swimming at an indoor water park place. Saturday we swam at the country club, Hans golfed, went to the ward breakfast, and did fireworks in the cul-de-sac. Sunday we went to church and to lunch at Egberts and then Hans flew home. Monday was Ashley's birthday and we drove to Bear Lake. We usually stay in my aunt's cabin right on the lake, but this year we stayed in a house that was about 5 miles off the lake. It had a beautiful view and enough working showers that we were clean this year. It was a different kind of Bear Lake experience, which we enjoyed. We spent the week playing in the sand, riding on the waverunner, tubing, kneeboarding, and enjoying cousins. It was great. I can't wait to go back again next year.
More pictures of Bear Lake and Ashley's party to follow.