Monday, May 24, 2010

DC days 1 & 2

We are alive and have survived 2 whole days in our amazing capital city. 2 more to go, and we will see if we survive those as well. Sunday we went to Arlington National Cemetery, and that is an amazing place. A great lesson in reverence especially for the kids. We were able to see lots of monuments Sunday--Lincoln, Jefferson, Korean War, and Vietnam War. Ben and I had not seen the Korean War memorial before. It was really cool.

Today we were able to go the Great Falls National Park which was amazing. I didn't realize the Potomac is so big and has such amazing falls! It was beautiful, and a great precursor for Niagara Falls next week. We were able to enjoy the National Museums of Art. We were able to see the only Leonard Da Vinci in the United States. Miss A was really excited about that because she had just done a big research project on him end of school. She even dressed up like him and gave a 2 minutes speech as him. Cool stuff. My kids loved the underground walkway between the East and West Art Museums. It has these awesome changing lights--like you are in a space ship or something. We had to go down and up it twice. We hit the Smithsonian Museum of American History. Of course the highlight there was the First Ladies dresses, and Mrs. Obama's is there already. They also had a pair of Apollo Ohno's Olympic speed skates there. That was Miss O's favorite find of the day. We were also able to go to the Washington DC temple which is gorgeous.

We have to get to bed quick because we have White House tickets for 7:30 a.m. (not by choice, you just take what they give you). We got stuck in rush hour traffic going "home" today, and my kids had a hard time with that. It doesn't exist in their world. Miss O asked, "Why is it called Rush hour when you go so slow?" We are not in Kansas anymore, Toto.

Friday, May 21, 2010

Jumping for joy!

We are jumping for joy at our house today. School is out for the summer!!! Woohoo!!
I didn't realize how high Miss A could jump, maybe hurdles are in her future. Anyway, I told my kids "do the Toyota jump" and they looked at me like I was crazy. "What is the Toyota jump, Mom?" my 12-year-old asked. How could she not know what the Toyota jump is? My poor deprived kids. . .you all know what I'm talking about when I say "Toyota jump" don't you? "Oh what a feeling. . .Toyota" then the jump. . . Please tell me I'm not the only one old enough to remember those commercials. I am sure they don't have them now considering Toyota's current situation, but I wouldn't know since we haven't had TV since my 12-year-old was 6 months old, but that is a post for another day. Speaking of posts, I may be absent for about 2 weeks while we are on vacation, but know you will get an ear-full and an eye-full (lots of pictures) when we get back. Happy jumping at your house! (see if your kids know what the Toyota jump is) Summer here we come!!!

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Chop, chop--getting ready for summer

Today was a big day. Miss O got her hair chopped for summer. She had been wanting to cut it for a while, but we decided to wait until after soccer because for soccer you really need your hair in a pony tail. She wanted to do it right before school got out so everyone could see the "new Miss O" and before our trip on Saturday, so my hair dresser was kind enough to oblige.
This is the before--she is so excited!
And this is the after. Super cute, huh?

Watch out summer, here she comes!

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Some random sweetness

Just some random (my 12 year old uses that word all the time!) sweetness from around our house lately. . .
Random sweet #1: Saturday night Ben and I picked these from our own back yard!!! We put in 50 strawberry plants 3 years ago, and they are really producing this year. Don't they look yummy? I think the 3rd year is the beginning of good things with fruit because last year was the 3rd year for our blackberry bushes, and we got tons! Next year will be the 3rd year for our raspberries, so I hope they will be good next year! 3rd years the charm, right? So we had yummy strawberry crepes for dinner tonight. So sweet!
Random sweet #2: A great big thank you to the Parker family for sending out this awesome train with Grandma and Grandpa to my Mr J, who if you didn't already know is a major train fan!!! He loves, loves, loves it!!! Rides it every. single. day. It is in the backyard in our summer house, and it fits perfect there. Thank you, thank you, thank you to the Parkers!

Random sweet #3: My kids have 5 days of school left

Random sweet #4: We leave for our big 2 week back East trip in 6 days!!! We are super excited! We will be in Washington DC, and in upper Pennsylvania (Erie), NY (Niagara Falls, Palmyra, etc) so if you have any suggestions, words of wisdom, don't do's or don't misses for traveling in that area, please leave a comment and share your knowledge! Thanks! Hope that you are having some random sweetness in your neck of the woods too!

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Miss E gets baptized

As mentioned before, we had an 8th birthday last week which is a big deal in our church. When you turn 8 you can be baptized into the church, become an official member and receive the Gift of the Holy Ghost. Miss E decided she wanted to be baptized, and we were very happy with her decision. We had a wonderful weekend with family, and it was so nice to have Ben's parents here, especially to have his mom here on Mother's Day. My kids were extra lucky to have both their grandmas here on Mother's day. Family is such a blessing!
Miss E was baptized by Ben, which was really neat. Here they are all ready to go in and get wet!
Mr J was pretty proud of his big sister, and she was pretty excited too.

Everyone together after the baptism. What a blessing to have everyone there. Love Mr J's expression.
Me and my girl. So proud of her.
My Ben and my girl. My dad gave a talk on baptism at the service, and he talked about this picture and how Miss E represented Jesus, and Ben represented John the Baptist because Ben holds the same power and authority to baptize as John the Baptist does. It was a great talk. Thank you Dad! Way to go Miss E! We are proud of you and love you tons!

Monday, May 10, 2010

Happy 8th Birthday Miss E!

Our middle girls have birthdays one week apart. It makes for lots of cake for a few weeks, which we don't have a problem with. So last week Miss E celebrated her 8th birthday which is a big deal in our church. When a child turns 8 they can be baptized and become an official member of the church, so this birthday was a big deal. Ben's parents drove 2 days to be with us for the occasion. It was very neat. I will share pictures from the baptism later, but first the birthday. . .
Ben and Miss E decorated her cake the night before per tradition at our house. Love that tradition!
Then this was right after her amazing blowing out the candles experience. As Miss E leaned over to blow out her candles her hair caught on fire and just flared up instantly. Luckily my mom was right by her and quickly stamped it out with her hands. Miss E was a little shaken, but recovered quickly and said, "This is the best birthday ever!"

Our flaming haired girl and her little brother who gave her a cute necklace and that cute pink shirt she is wearing.

Miss A gave her a cool giant tennis ball.

And Miss E was very lucky to have both sets of grandparents at her birthday. Here she is with Ben's awesome parents.
And here she is with my awesome parents and my mom's slightly burned fingers from getting the fire out of Miss E's hair. Crazy. Never a dull moment.
I think this was her favorite present. A giant Beamo frisbee. It is really fun. I would highly recommend it. The reviews on Amazon were great too, one person said they had one for 8 years and another said 15 years.
We are so blessed to have Miss E in our family. She is so full of energy and is always doing something fun. She is a great student, a very good piano player, a great reader, artist, and keeps us on our toes. We love you Miss E! Happy Birthday!!!

Saturday, May 8, 2010

Alive and kicking and Happy Mother's Day!

Yes, we are still alive at our house. It has been a very busy week--2 birthdays, 3 skunks, 1 field trip, wonderful in-laws visiting, 1 baptism, 47 flowers, and lots of other things, but all is well, and I will share lots of photos this next week after I collapse and sleep all day tomorrow--isn't that acceptable for a mother on Mother's Day???? Works well for me. Just wanted to wish all you wonderful Mothers' a very Happy Mother's Day! Hope you enjoy it! I am so very grateful for the wonderful women in my life--mother, grandmothers, mother-in-law, aunts, sisters, sisters-in-laws, and of course friends. What an amazing blessing you are! Love you all!

Sunday, May 2, 2010

Happy 10th Birthday Miss O!

We celebrated a 10th birthday here this past week. . .
Per tradition, Ben and Miss O decorated her cake the night before.
Blowing out candles and opening presents. She got her new Harry Potter shirt that morning so she could wear it to school. Harry Potter is one of her favorite things.

She got a big ball from Miss A

Miss E made and painted her a cute ceramic bunny.

And Mr J got her a cool soccer shirt.

And thank you Nana and Grandpa for the 39 Clues books. She loves those! We love Miss O and are so grateful she is a part of our family. She is such a good helper and big sister. She helps make our home a very happy place! Love you Miss O!