Yearly Photo on a Reptile


Taking the pictures off the camera for Halloween came with a bunch of pictures from the summer. Included in that picture dump is a picture that we get every single year. Us on the alligator! (crocodile? Not sure.)

Here’s us through the ages. Starting in 2008. I know I have more before this, but it’s all I can find right now.



2010, 2011 I have no picture. I think maybe we were in Utah these two years?

Family in Pool July 2012


You tell me…does Cowboy’s hair look really red in this picture? Because I see flashes of red, but it’s not there all the time.

It’s fun to see us grow up and change through the years in the same spot. Kind of sad that this year’s picture may be our last. Not because of us moving (well, 20% of that) but because the guy in our church who owns this is moving Thanksgiving weekend. So that may have been our last one! Glad we went!


Playing Catch Up: Summer Edition 5


Every year during the summer our bishop (the leader of our congregation) opens his summer camp to us for the day and we have a huge pool party. We go every year, shimmering heat or rain. Of course we always have fun swimming with our ward family. This year was no exception!

Pirate was obsessed with going under the water. Obsessed. It was all he did.

Pirate under water July 2012

Professor was content to float around on his 5 pool noodles. He can push himself around the pool by kicking and watch everyone play.

Professor floating July 2012

I didn’t get any pictures of Butterfly or Juice in the pool because I was tied to the stairs saving Pirate’s life every third dive or so. My BFF Lolli took pity on me and hung out talking. She also took our annual picture on the pool alligator.


Whoops, not that one!

Family in Pool July 2012

Juice played water ball with all the guys, and then street hockey. Every year, someone gets hurt in that street hockey game. He said the threat of danger makes it fun. Okay.

After all that playing, a good dinner of grilled stuffs and salads, we went home tired. I think all the kids fell asleep in the car and cried when we put pjs on them. Note for next year: bring pjs to change into!


Summer Fun


It seems like life is rush by, and already our summer is about half over.  I don’t have my wonderful helper Flower this year, so we’ve been kind of staying close to home.  Butterfly is asking when our fun will start.  But we HAVE done some fun things.  And I have pictures to prove it!

We’ve been blueberry picking twice this year, coming home each time with a little over 7 lbs of berries.  Gone within a week.  I’d love to go one more time before the season ends, but not sure if we’ll be able to squeeze it in.

Blueberry picking with Daddy

Hitch hiking blueberries

The fourth of July was HOT this year.  (Think over 100 degrees with a heat index over 110 degrees.)  We had an enormous wind storm that knocked power out to a lot of people’s houses, and knocked down several trees. 

Helping pick up.

The power company uses our fair grounds as a staging area for the power trucks.  Our town cancelled the 4th of July fireworks, which are on the fair grounds, so that the power company could continue using it.  We just drove to the town north of us and watch there with some of my friends from the barn.

Frederick Fireworks

Happy 4th of July 2012

We also went swimming with my BFF Lolli and her family. This is the first year that the boys have been able to touch the bottom of the pool and it was a lot easier. I did have to save each of them twice because they walked out farther than they thought, but it was no big deal.  I was also having fun with my underwater setting in the pool.

Swimming Professor

Pirate and his friend KitKat

Pirate Jumps!

Butterfly Jumps!

Butterfly Underwater

Reese, KitKat, Butterfly

Our Family Swimming 2012

So see, we HAVE done a lot of fun things this year.  And there is still more summer to come!


Pool Rats


This year for summer, we decided to skip joining the aquarium again and use that money to create our own aquarium. We joined a pool! So now we can go whenever we want!

We spent Saturday there. As in, SATURDAY. First, I took Butterfly to her swim lessons (not at this pool) and then we came home and took everyone else there. We stayed until nap time. Which is big for us.

By the end of that pool trip, Pirate was letting go and getting around the pool (with his floaty) on his own. Professor discovered a kick board and was in heaven. And Butterfly (the fish) thrashed around wonderfully.

She even jumped off the diving board by herself. And got herself back to the wall all by herself. I was not in the pool at all.

Wow she is growing up!

So the first thing she said this morning was, “Let’s go to the pool!” The boys piped up after her, “Pool!” So that’s what we did when Daddy came home. We went until it closed. It was awesome. This is going to be so much fun!

What’s not so fun? All the wet towels. And wet swim suits hanging over every door.


Adventure #3


Hey look at us on our hand picked (by Flower) adventure of the week. Since we had no power earlier this week, we kind of missed out on a few adventures planned out. This one was not to be missed though. We did this last year and it’s been on the top of our to-do list since Flower joined us in June. Sadly, it’s one of our last things to do with her!

Boy it’s bright out here in the water.

Fun at lake with Flower 1

Struggling with 2 boys, their life jackets, and their sister.

Fun at lake with Flower 2

Help! The ship is sinking!

Fun at lake with Flower 3

And what we did the rest of the day: Butterfly swimming and doing amazingly well, Pirate chasing her, and Flower chasing Pirate.

Fun at Cunningham Falls

Where is Professor? Attached to my side like a leech.

So my fingers fell asleep 2 times today with the grip that Professor had on my hands. He REALLY doesn’t want to be in the water by himself. I think he let go 3 times today, to just turn around and anxiously beg, “I got you?! I got you?!”

Pirate, on the other hand, is trying his dog gone best to keep up with Butterfly. He can basically swim all by himself in the life jacket. He can turn, go forward, go backwards and get away from you. When he gets stuck on his back in the life jacket (those jackets are meant to flip you to your back), he can flip himself over and keep on going. Truly amazing, let me tell you.

On the way to the lake it stormed big time. Thunder, lightning, hail, the works. Luckily, the storm broke right before we got to the lake and we had a swimmingly good time.


PS- Thanks to Lolli for the loan of her camera! I thought maybe I’d be able to handle not having this waterproof camera in my life anymore. But I just can’t. I’m now in the market for a newer version, a Pentax Optio W80 or W90. Donations towards the cause are welcome.

Five Things


5 things about today.  Ready?  Go.

1.  My back itches.  Seriously I want to rub up and down on a tree like bears do.  Itch itch itch itch!  Guess that means my sunburn from the beach is healing.  Itch!

2.  We took the boys swimming at Lolli‘s pool today and they did SO good.  So did Butterfly!  Pirate can get himself around the pool by himself (and his floaty) and turn right side up when he lists to the side.  Professor by the end of the hour or so that we were there, would at least let go of your hands and try to propel himself forward.  Pretty awesome for their first time in a big pool.  Ever.  AND!  Butterfly went off the diving board and swam to the side all by herself.  I was one proud mommy!

3.  I got to hold a new baby today and it felt just SO good.  I love babies.

4.  I forgot how awesome it is to commute in traffic here.  It’s awesome, let me tell you!

5.  My underwater camera is dead dead dead.  Unfix-able dead.  It’s so horribly sad I can’t think about it.  But you can check out Lolli‘s blog today and see the cute pictures she took of the boys with her camera that WAS just like mine.  Did I mention mine is dead?


Ward Picnic


This is the social event of the year for our ward. We have so much fun swimming in our bishop’s pool and playing with all of his camp equipment. It’s like a mini ward camp. Check out last years visit here. We have gone every year we’ve lived here and I couldn’t find any other time I wrote about it. Huh.

This year I was really excited about taking all the kids there because we always have so much fun. I was worried the night before that we wouldn’t be able to go because of Butterfly’s fever. It was basically gone so we planned on going. Besides we couldn’t miss out on our yearly picture on the alligator!

During the boys’ first nap we cleaned another section of my room. I now have a scrap booking table available to use every day. I’m so excited! I also threw out a big trash bag of garbage, found a bunch of unopened mail (oops) and put more things into the attic. Gotta love this cleaning I’m doing. I hope to have this all done by this weekend.

The party was a lot of fun. We did a lot of swimming. The boys really loved wading around in the baby pool. Butterfly and her BFF Vinny stuck together like glue until his family had to go home. I’m sad he’s going to be going to school this year! We’re going to miss him. I think the highlight of the day was finding a grey tree frog. It was so cute! It had yellow legs and curled up in Juice’s hand. We both wanted to keep him but figured having another creature in the house was just asking for trouble.

Butterfly and I went down the slide again. And she told me again that she didn’t ever want to go down it again. Crazy girl. I had a good time with it! The boys were done walking around the pool a lot sooner than Butterfly was done playing in it.

We enjoyed eating bbq and Butterfly and the boys spent about an hour playing in the sand box. I was able to help out another mom rinse out her little boy’s eye (he is about a month older than my boys) because another kid threw sand in his face. It was nice to help out a little. And it was nice that the boys were so entertained with the sand!

While I helped with the other mom and the kids played in the sand with Flower watching out for them, Juice played street hockey with all the other guys in the ward. You aren’t really a part of our ward until you’ve bled at this game. It’s a serious thing. Juice plays goalie a lot, and this year was no exception. He could also barely walk after the game.

Everyone had baths when we got home to rinse the sand off. That’s when I noticed both of the boys seem to be sporting fevers as well. Looks like our house is sick!


Pictures from Today


We spent the day at Cunningham Falls State park. HOW FUN!



Tonight was Butterfly’s very last swim lesson. The one that they encourage the parents to come and watch (they kick us out otherwise…important I think). So Juice came home from work early and we packed up the boys and our sweet Butterfly to swim lessons.

Guess what I forgot to pack? MY CAMERA.

I was annoyed. And a little sad. I could have taken video of her jumping up and down on the side of the wall! I could have shown you that she is by far the biggest kid in the class. I could have shown you how utterly fearless she is in the water. Instead, you’ll have to use your imagination.

So one of the things that her teacher has them do is jump while holding onto the wall. She jumps as high as she can and makes an impressive splash coming down. The poor tiny kids next to her have no chance. She is completely oblivious to them though and just was to jump “the highest biggest fastest that I can!” (Someone let her see the Incredibles and now she wants to be Dash. Sigh.)

They play ring around the rosy and have the kids blow bubbles at the end or put their face in the water. Butterfly dunks herself every time instead. She comes up sputtering water and looking a little shocked but happy. She even put her face in the water and walked 2 or 3 steps to her teacher today. It was truly amazing.

Juice leaned over and asked if I was hiding some kind of mermaid genes because she suddenly turned into a fish. She really did. She passed everything on her report card (except for 2 things related to floating on backs…I don’t think they even went over that.) and she is cleared to advance to the next class: strokers! We aren’t putting her in that class this summer because I think we are going to try and get her into swim lessons at my mom’s pool. It would give us something to do and it runs every week we are there. She’ll do strokers maybe in the fall or next spring.

She even jumped into the pool without her teachers help and came right back up to the surface. I’m so proud of her. And I can’t wait to go swimming with her!


Busy Today!


This morning, instead of staying home and doing laundry like a good girl should, I went out with my friend Lolli and her son AJ. I thought Butterfly could use some play time so we made plans to go to the resource center. It is so much fun there! They have play dough, paints, toys we don’t have, gravel, lots of blocks, games, puzzles…you name it they have it.

Before we went to the resource center though, we stopped off at the pizza place for free pasta in a bread bowl. Yeah, it’s just what it sounds like. Pasta wrapped in a pizza dough like bowl. It was pretty good. I enjoyed mine. Butterfly wouldn’t touch it but I liked it.

After some good play dough play (Butterfly built a forest with animals in it, very convincing too) and some dot painting, we came home with tired kids. Butterfly’s swim lessons were going to start in a little over an hour so I decided to not make her have a nap. I knew she would nap if I put her in her room and she is cross when she wakes up under 1 hour. So no nap for her.

But, she was good enough to get ready for swimming lessons and very happy to be in the pool. As I was picking her up after her class, her teacher was letting the kids “jump” in the pool. The teacher would tell the kids to get ready, and then basically lift them high and bring them down into the pool. Butterfly surprised her teacher by doing a mini cannon ball into the water all by herself. She actually went all the way under and popped back up by herself. Way to go Butterfly!

I wanted to go take advantage of baskin Robbins 31 cent ice cream today but our local baskin Robbins has closed. I couldn’t think of another one close by so we went with our old stand by, Bruster’s. Plus it was raining so we got our second scoop for free. Yum!

Everyone went to bed tired and happy, which is where I’m off to as well.


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