Thursday, January 1, 2015

The Grand Finale of 2014

 We started December babysitting Zeus for Kathy and Troy while they went to Hawaii to visit Rich! It would have been more fun to go to Hawaii but Zeus was a lot of fun too. 
Though he doesn't look too thrilled being dressed up by Victoria.
 Victoria got braces!
 Who would have thought that Kaleb and Victoria would have braces on at the same time. It is an absolute miracle that we are affording this. 
Our orthodontist is wonderful.
 Victoria and I researched how to make authentic looking clay food for Barbie and AG dolls.  You would be amazed what is out there. Of course that is a post in itself. If you are interested, 
check out my Pinterest board Here.
We tried convincing Kaleb  to retire this sleep shirt. He found this at the thrift shirt when he was only 5 years old. It hung down below his knees. When he showed it to me I had asked him what he was going to do with that? 
He was holding it like a prized possession in his little 5 year old hand.
 He told me "I'm gonna sweep in it!"
So he has been wearing this shirt that says 
Peace, Love and Crabs from Joe's Crab Shack for 10 years!
 We put together this huge, awesome puzzle! We have a funny family thing that happens every time we put a puzzle together. Someone always wants to put the last piece in. 
Can you guess who?
 For years, he has taken a piece and has hidden it so that when we go to put in the last piece it is missing! Daphne and I finished this puzzle around 11 pm at night when we discovered that 2 pieces were missing! Uugh!
We baked cookies. 
Victoria was begging to use her Buffalo cookie cutter. 
Sure, why not, we'll just have Christmas Buffaloes!
I bet you never had Christmas Buffaloes before!
Sam did his best at keeping the floor clean.
Georgie discovered how fun it was to hang out in the Christmas tree while his house was being cleaned. Though he decided that the foliage wasn't very tasty.
 I had help with wrapping presents, which is always nice. 
Notice the direction of the trees on the paper...
We added to our massive collection of ornaments. Our neighbor Chris whittled the wooden Santa. It is amazing. We couldn't find Jared an ornament that related to construction so I sculpted a hammer from clay. Kaleb, of course has the green alien and the minion. He is getting quite a collection of brightly colored beings. Can you guess Daphne's? Yep, the cats, and a blue sea horse for Victoria. Daphne and I burned the snowflakes into wood cuts and Victoria painted the little snowman.
We have spent the winters living here watching trucks....sometimes city trucks.....pull into the library when no one is there and do donuts in the parking lot. We have always told my Dad about this. He told my Mom that he can't wait for the first snow because he wanted to do donuts out in the parking lot for us to see. So on Christmas Morning when we woke to SNOW!!!!!!!
 He called to tell us to look out our window!
Yep, there he was doing donuts in the parking lot sliding all around. He had to stop though because a couple times it actually looked like he was going to get stuck. It brought back all those years in our Jeep growing up with him splashing through mud puddles where the spray would be sent up 20 feet into the air! 
It was very entertaining!
 It was wonderful having Nana and Poppa at our house for Christmas.
 It was our first one together in many, many years.
 It was a good day spending it all together.
 It reminded me of all the blessings that God has granted us over and over again!
 The past few Christmas' have been very difficult for various reasons. Mostly for financial reasons. This was our first Christmas doing on our own....because we COULD! 
Thank you LORD!
 Kaleb....pretty excited about his ORANGE sheets! 
And Poppa happy with his new Popcorn Popper!
 My son, the Carpenter, made three cooling racks for me. He built them after a set that my mom has had for years! I am very proud of him and now we have plenty of racks to use on the table during dinner.
Victoria painted me this adorable snowman! I love it! I found this awesome frame and almost busted it to pieces when I slipped on a piece of ice on our drive way! 
Uugh! Nothing like jarring your whole body.....
 I love these next three pictures of Henry! 
He looks so cute.....

Kirk says they are all the same...but no...his tail is moving!
 Sam loves, loves, loves the SNOW!
 He always gets so excited when he realizes that there is fresh snow on the ground.
 We now know that my parents little dog Sugar, loves the snow too. She was an avid swimmer in Arizona and doesn't have a place to swim...no need, she has a yard full of snow! Who would have ever thought that she was going to love it so much. She was outside catching the snowflakes as they were falling. It was hysterical to watch.
 She has the perfect fur for collecting snowballs.....
 We call this snorkeling. In the pool she would make bubbles with her paws and then bite them. So now, she does the same thing but with snow.
We got in some night sledding which is always fun. It is really convenient using the library's parking lot lights and a nearby drainage ditch. We now have two new "metal" snow saucers. 
We have replaced about 4 or 5 plastic ones. 
We saved part of our tax return from Spring to buy snowshoes for all of us. 
Now we can hike Green Canyon year round.
 It was quite the treat to wake up to so much snow on Christmas morning. 
We measured 7 inches by night fall.
 I love that we don't become hermits during the winter.
We celebrated the New Year with a game night, Nana and Poppa and left over fireworks!
We are discussing goals for the year and actually feel hopeful over our situation in life. I think we are recovering from the economy crash that we experienced when we lived in Arizona. We have been greatly blessed and can't live without God's plan for us.
We have discovered that when we try to do what we want, we just mess it up. 
His plan is so much better.
I can't wait to see what he has planned for us this year!


Saturday, November 29, 2014

Samson

Samson came to us 6 years ago.
He was out on his own roaming the streets when he was picked up by a friend.
He slept for three days straight and was the weirdest looking puppy I had ever seen.
His back legs are so short that they look like they belong to some other dog. His neck is that of a basset hound and his head is that of a Queensland Heeler.
His nose....definitely basset.
He sniffs the carpet so deeply, that we are sure that there are objects stuck to the basement ceiling. He is the biggest baby when it comes to loud noises. July is a hard month for him.
His tongue, I am positive, is that of a giraffe. He has the longest prehensile tongue that we have ever witnessed. And boy does he use it.
He has eaten a tub of butter, an entire box of Cheezeits, a entire loaf of freshly baked zucchini bread,
among lots of other goodies. But most recently, he and his accomplice Henry, ate two loaves of cinnamon bread!

November in a Flash!


I love Autumn!
I love Summer too. And both seasons have just zoomed past us.
Is there such a thing as getting a grip on life?

 Life has had it's ups and downs. One of the ups is that Nana and Poppa are in our lives!
I think I know where I get some of my crazy ideas.
 Victoria is right up there. No way will she be left behind.
Notice the cow watching them to the left.
Victoria managed to get her presentation on Jamestown completed in time for the History Fair.
We had a great time researching Jamestown together.
 Jared has now learned to not hit the brakes when you start to slide on the snow. 
The girls saw him do it at a very slow speed. 
Glad to know he wasn't driving too fast.
 Jared offered to drive the girls to ice skating just down the street.
After he did it, Victoria ran up to him to ask him if he wanted her to call me for help.
She is such a take charge kind of girl.
 We called the tow truck since there was actually a foot and a half drop off on the other side of the curb. The guy said he had pulled someone off that very spot a week earlier because they weren't paying attention and just drove over the curb. I told Jared that at least he didn't do something stupid like that. His mishap is all about learning to drive in the snow.
 Three days later......
Daphne's in the emergency room getting stitches (actually glued) under her chin. 
She slipped and fell on the kitchen floor. 
Ouch!
This has been a rough month.
 Jared now comes home from "school" filthy dirty!
And smiling. Always.
Oh, and his Carhartt jacket is his new best friend.
 I had toast in the morning and found this crumb...
And then I dropped it on the floor by accident where the dog ate it.
How he saw that I have no idea.
 Our 4H group has been learning all about cake decorating. They practically begged to build gingerbread houses. They planned it all and had a wonderful time together.

Believe it or not, I don't have a single picture of Thanksgiving with my cousin Kathy, Troy and Blue, at my parents new house.
Our family is thankful for so much.
We are thankful for the roof over our heads,
the food on our table,
gas in the car,
a warm bed to sleep in,
and a God who loves us.

October in a Blink!

Okay....are you ready?
It starts off serene....
 We hiked the Springhollow Trail
 Jared...acting cool. Because, you know, when you are 18, you think your family is full of dorks.
 Sisters holding hands. Not because they love each other. Because I got sick of listening to them gripe about each other and how "she" this and "she" that. Holding hands always cures them.
Uuughghh!!!
 Just after this hike we found out that a dear friend of ours died tragically at the age of 18. These trees make remind me how it feels when time stands still.
That is how I felt when we heard.
 Time slowed down and then sped up quickly just after this hike.
 Kaleb always makes me laugh at the stuff he comes up with.
 We're heading in now to Birthdays!
Victoria and Daphne both had a birthday in the same week. 
What a whirlwind week. They enjoyed sharing it with Nana and Poppa.
 Hawaiian Luau party inspired by the American Girl story Molly.
Victoria even decorated her own cupcakes.

 Scouts at our house making neckerchief toggles for our Scout buddy Cameron who passed away tragically. It helped with coping. Cameron loved the Broncos and was very opinionated regarding the Broncos. So of course they made toggles in orange and blue in memory of Cameron.
 The only non-blurry picture from the Pumpkin Walk
 Cake again! Happy 22 Daphne.
 Jared showing us the progress of the house they are building for school....and showing us all the blood spots that he has dripped.
So far, he has hammered his thumb and fingers multiple times, got nailed with a nail gun in the wrist, whacked his chin with a tress (and probably needed stitches but didn't get them), fell off the roof.....and has bled many times. 
I bought him a box of bandaids and duck tape to keep in the car.
 Victoria at the Howl-o-Ween Dog Agility show. She got to try Henry out on the agility course. He loved it ....of course. Can you see the devil wings?
 Victoria's monster cupcake that she decorated in her 4H group.
I prepared frosting ahead of time for 10 weeks! 
I am so happy we are at the end of the semester now. Whew!
 Halloween Pumpkins
We grew so many pumpkins this year. Victoria just kept running out to the porch to grab another pumpkin to carve. there were no limits. Daphne, Jared and Kaleb got in on the action as well.
 Thanks to Daphne, Victoria had an invisible dog to walk and Kirk made her a gigantic milk bone. Daphne had an invisible horse. I can't find the picture, when I find it I will have to post it.
Recognize the tiki head? Kaleb's paper mache project that he entered into the fair?
Kirk won a $25 gift card for his costume.
 We thought we would be smart and have a fire since it is usually freezing cold on Halloween. 
Not this year...