Friday, December 19, 2008

Monday, December 1, 2008

Christmas Trees and Snow Days...Yay Winter!!!

This year marks our 4th year back in the states and the 4th trip to a tree farm to find our Christmas tree! This is a tradition we love and the girls are finally starting to love it as well. They were so cute as they hunted for the perfect tree---quirks and all! For some reason, we have the uncanny ability to pick out the most crooked trees!
Today was our first snow day of the year...YAY!!! I was so glad to wake up to 5 inches of snow and we didn't have to rush out the door to go anywhere! We had a great day of sitting by the fire in our pj's, sledding and playing in the snow, drinking hot chocolate, making cookies, and decorating our Christmas Tree! Winter is finally here and it is beautiful...remind me of this in February :) !!!

Here's a little video of my penguins...backwards and forwards!!!

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Thursday, November 27, 2008

What would I do without you?

As today is Thanksgiving, I wanted to write a post for one thing I am especially thankful for this year! As you may know, my parents bought the house next door to us. My mom and dad have been here periodically since then...but my mom has been here for the past 2 months!!! I'm so sad that she will be leaving for California tomorrow. My life now has to get back to normal :(!Here is my list of why my I am so thankful for my mom and why she is the BEST neighbor in the world!
  1. She came over almost morning to help with breakfast and watch Laicee while I took my older girls to school!

  2. She watched Emma and Laicee while I took the older girls to dance class and soccer!

  3. She picked up things for me at the grocery store whenever I need them!

  4. She would bring me coke and sandwiches for lunch!

  5. We'd go shopping together!

  6. She watched the girls while I volunteered in the girls classes!

  7. She came over during nap time so I could run errands!

  8. She'd surprise me and clean-up dinner and do the dishes while I gave the girls their baths!

  9. She let the girls come over to play at her house for HOURS at a time!

  10. She never complained to help! She was just happy to be with her grand-daughters!

  11. She read the girls bedtime stories!

  12. She had numerous movie nights with the girls so I could go out with my friends...and Kevin too!

  13. She gladly let the girls hug her to death every time they saw her!

  14. She has helped so much with everything as Kev has been studying ALL THE TIME for his HUGE test that he is taking soon!

Mom, I love you and I am so thankful for how amazing you have been! You have made it so that I haven't lost my mind dragging all my little ones around while Kev has been out of commission! You have stepped in when I have needed you the most! I LOVE LOVE LOVE you and I'm seriously going to miss you!!!

I hope you all have had a great day! Happy Thanksgiving Everyone!



Monday, November 17, 2008

What else do you do with a house of girls???

As we were walking out of blockbuster, the girls noticed a poster for the new Tinkerbell movie. They were so excited...but even more excited when they thought to invite their friends over to watch the movie. The idea went on from there and we had a super fun girly night with pink cookies, cupcakes with cherries, and pajamas! There was one boy who came. He told his mom that he, "wasn't afraid of Tinkerbell"! Later that night as they drove home he said, "that wasn't Tinkerbell, Captain Hook wasn't anywhere in the movie!" I think he was sorely disappointed! In the end, the girls and their friends had a great squeally time! AND--a few quirky extras!

I only let the older girls paint and do messy crafts when Emma and Laicee are napping. If you knew Emma, this would make total sense! Yesterday, Emma woke up without us knowing and snuck into the kitchen and got into the paints. At what point did she think that painting her face was a good idea?


Amberlee is our cute little eclectic one! It is not unusual for her to put together an outfit that makes her totally happy. My only rule is that she has to match on school days and Sundays!

Sunday, November 2, 2008

Pumpkin Festivus - For the Rest-of-us

Why limit Halloween celebrations to just one night? Our town certainly doesn't. There is a pumpkin festival downtown a week before Halloween. The kiddos get all dressed up, trick-or-treat at all the businesses, play games, and roll pumpkins down hills! It's lots of crazy fun.

This year, Kassie (who played her part very well--I can't tell you how many times I had to say, "Kass, will you please use words to answer me, not meows!") and Amberlee were cats. Emma was a princess and Laicee was a butterfly.

Rolling pumpkins down the hill!Emma is trying to smile and eat her chewy candy at the same time!


On Halloween night, our neighborhood full of Halloween enthusiasts decided to have a progressive party. The kids started with trick-or-treating, and then moved from house to house playing games. At our house the kids did pumpkin bowling and went on a scavenger hunt to find their candy stolen by the wicked witch! Throughout the night, I kept finding Emma hidden under tables ravaging her candy!



The neighborhood kiddos!

Farm Fun with Amberlee





Amberlee went a field trip with her class to a baby animal farm. They had baby animals that you could pet, hold, and feed. Amberlee was chosen to feed a bottle to a cow. She was so excited and talked about it for days! In addition to the animals, the kids got to go on a hay ride and pick out their very own pumpkin.
Also, every year our ward has a fall party at a member's farm. The kids play in the hay barn, we go on hay rides, and this year Amberlee got to ride one of their horses! She is such an animal lover and it's so fun to see how happy and excited she gets around them!


Thursday, October 30, 2008

In the dark of the night!

Every night before I go to bed, I check on the girls. I tuck all their blankets back on, kiss their little heads and head off to my bedroom to go to bed. Last night, after I finished my bedtime routine, I heard the toilet running in the girls bathroom. I walked back down the hall....no one was there. I looked back into their rooms...no one had moved...AT ALL...not even an inch. They were EXACTLY as I had left them! So naturally...I completely freak out! Who flushed the toilet??? I know it wasn't Kev because 1. He isn't a quiet person and 2. He was also dead asleep. So I ran back to my bedroom and woke him up..."Kev, go check the house. Someone flushed the toilet and it wasn't the girls!!!" (Please tell me I'm not the only wife to make her husband go check out freaky noises in the middle of the night !). Now, Kev IS THE WORST person to wake up. He is completely incoherent and has no idea what is going on! He starts complaining that I'm waking him up! Somehow he manages to get up, stumbles down to the bathroom, and looks INSIDE the toilet and exclaims, "There's no one here"! No kidding! So I make HIM look behind the shower curtain (because there's no way I'm looking there) and then I proceed to make him look in every closet, room, crevasse of the house! I even made him look in the garage and in the cars (just in case)! Unfortunately, once he "came to" he just laughed at me the entire time he was checking for the mysterious toilet flusher! So in the end, I still have no idea who flushed the toilet. It's just another night of many where I make him check out the freaky noises!

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Where do I put all the leaves?!?!?!

(BTW, I can't even tell you how impossible it is to take a decent picture of our 4 little ones...seriously!)
There is something so warm, cozy and nostalgic about the fall time. I love turning on the fire place for the first time and I love running to Starbucks (for hot chocolate of course) on those first really cold mornings! One of Michigan's fall traditions is to have apple cider and donuts. And it's a tradition I am loving! I also love going to the apple orchards and pumpkin patches. We went to the patch on Saturday and had so much fun! It was so funny to watch the girls pick out their pumpkins. The smallest ones were obviously for Laicee---and the largest ones were for Kev. While we were there, we went on a hay ride, the girls rode ponies, and they also went on a cow train that they LOVED!
They loved the hay ride...although we all ended up covered in hay (which I'm still finding in their hair). We were the only ones who thought throwing hay on a hay ride was funny!
(The little boy in the pics is my sister's little boy, Jackson)
Amberlee was THE MOST excited little girl to ride the ponies. This was by far her favorite thing!

In addition to our fall fun, Kev took the girls camping in the backyard! They loved it, of course, and learned that the moon is a natural nightlight. They were so amazed! Emma kept saying (over and over and over) "Emma (3rd person speech) camping outside with Daddy"...adding a cute little cheesy grin each time she'd say it!




Another great thing about the fall...the scenery! It is so amazing around here with all the different colors of the leaves. Our neighborhood is gorgeous at this time!

...But then it all falls! It takes us a couple hours every Saturday to rake up all of our leaves. It's probably quite funny to drive by our house and see Kev with his crutches trying to rake up leaves, me doing the majority of the work, and the girls "helping" and then jumping in the HUGE piles when we're finished. It's all part of fall...and I love it!

I have to give you an aerial shot...so many leaves and I don't know what to do with them!!!

Saturday, October 11, 2008

Laicee -- 0 to 60 in 10 minutes!

This is mostly for the grandmas...Laicee is finally walking! Yeah! She has been cruising for about a month. She hasn't even been standing on her own...until tonight. All of the sudden, I found her standing...and then walking. It Happened just like that!! She was so proud of herself, as were we, but not nearly as much as her squealy sisters in the background!
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Friday, October 10, 2008

New Neighbors

Our house is on the right, theirs is on the left



I realize that you probably could care less about who our neighbors might be...unless it's someone interesting...

Last May, Steph's parents were visiting and saw the house next door to us was for sale. They had been thinking about making our town their "home base" so they put in an offer and bought the house! Just last week, Steph's sister called and told us that she is now moving into the house next door! So now, Kristin, her husband, and her little man will be our new neighbors!

We know what you're thinking..."I don't know if I could live THAT close to family"! It will be interesting...and ground rules have been set, of course :), But we are overall excited. We have never lived close to any family so this will be a new experience for us.

So, we love polls! Our question is...could you do it? Could you live Raymond style by your family???

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Who takes polaroids anymore?

Kev's surgery to repair his completely torn Achilles tendon was successful. We asked the Doctor to take pictures of the surgery and I almost gave him my digital camera when he said he had his own equipment. Little did I know, that by "equipment" he meant "a measly Polaroid camera"! So, for all of you who voted "Bring it on" to see surgery pics, here you go...

and to give you a better idea of the procedure here are pictures of the same surgery on a different guy. You can see the tendon torn and then repaired.


















He's doing well, but he is still in lots of pain. He'll start physical therapy in a couple weeks and that will last for 8-12 weeks!!!


So, as a side note to all you awesome weekend warriors out there (this is what the doctor called Kev when he was drug in by his equally sweaty, middle-aged friends)...just stretch a little bit more than you usually would (although this really is a freak of an accident) and maybe play just a little bit lighter than you normally do...We, your wives, know how awesome and steller and amazing and austounding you are...and you play just as great-if not better than you did 10 years ago...really...but please just don't get injured and put your poor wives through this!

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Laicee's 1st Birthday

Last year at this time, I was sitting in church with contractions that I was positive were fake. Can you believe they actually had the nerve to extend a primary calling to me while I was in labor? Little did I know that three hours later, Laicee would arrive! She has blessed our lives so much! She brings such a calming peace to our home. It was great to finally celebrate her first birthday today as Kev's surgery yesterday lasted waaay longer than expected (we'll follow up with that in the next post). Anyway, happy birthday to our itty-bitty-cutie! We love you Laicee!

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Laicee Naomi enters the world on 9/16/07
7 lbs 20 in

She's already a daddy's girl!

All bundled up for her 1st MI winter

3 months old

8 months old

4th of July - Freedom Festival Parade