Wednesday, July 28, 2010

6 month pictures

We went to the park and I got a few cute pictures of Kenna. Oh I love this chubby, content, happy little girl!

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Sunday, July 25, 2010

Duck Pond

Steve didn't work on Friday so we decided to take the kiddos and go have some fun. We headed over to the duck pond (Discovery Park?). The kids love fishing well it's more of casting their lines because we have yet to actually catch anything though we have seen others catch a few fish. We took a lunch and some extra bread ends to feed to the ducks and called it a great couple of hours. Here are a few pics of all the fun.

Railey feeding the ducks

Damen "fishing"

Seth "fishing." They are actually pretty good at casting now!

I liked this shot.

Railey looking at all the tiny fish. They are all about 2-3 inches long.

Kenna getting some nourishment off of the stroller straps.

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Thursday, July 22, 2010

Sleep Over

We have some friends in the ward, The Bradshaw's, very neat family. The other night we had them over for dinner and then a bit later they headed home. We realized they had forgotten their big bucket of Aggie ice cream so Steve and Seth hopped on the motorcycle to go deliver it. They didn't come back, and didn't come back so we went for a walk to find them. They were over talking with and playing. The kids had decided they needed a sleep over. Only problem is they and we at this point only have sleep overs with cousins. But no need to fear the kids reminded their mom that they were cousins. We, Veralyn and I, have a common Great, great maybe one more great Grandfather, Archibald Gardner (they place up north called Gardner Village--yeah that's our relative). Though we both come through a different wife I guess you can still say we are related.

So they started planning and though last week didn't work out we got it in on Wednesday. They were so excited to sleep in the tent trailer. Just as we were about to go get thing set up, there was a little cloud burst and a few lightening strikes so they decided to put a tent up downstairs and they were just as happy doing that (so was Steve and I cause we got to sleep in our own bed--we hadn't decided who was going to be out there with the kids).

The only problem was they were so excited and wound up (just like any sleepover) that we needed to get them calmed down so we put Superman on at 10:00 pm. And yes it is a 3 hour movie. We let it go for about half the movie then turned it off until morning. I was sure they would sleep in with going to bed about 11:45, but NO they were up at 6:00 to finish their movie. Those stinkers. But they all had such a great time. They are now planning another one because they weren't able to sleep in the tent trailer and they still want to. Oh well they are great kids and they all get along so well.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Damen's Advice

I have really been struggling getting Railey into her car seat lately. I don't remember having such an issue with the boys maybe because they didn't know any better, but Railey knows there is freedom out there and wants it NOW!

So the normal routine is have my elbow ready to push in the second she takes in a breath and isn't arching her back for that split second. I have it down though it is a fight and one I'm tired of. I just want to leave her home most of the times.

Well the other day we were meeting friends at the pool and were already a bit late so had to hurry and Railey was being a stinker. I went around to get Kenna in and was yelling at Railey to buckle up (she can get some of it done by herself) finally I asked Damen to help. He went back there and followed my example and was yelling and fighting her. Then I stopped to watch. He had stopped ,stopped forcing and started talking sweetly to her and within a couple of seconds had her buckled and was sitting buckled up in his own seat. I love having older children.

As we were driving away he says, "Mom, do you want to know something, if you would stop yelling and be nicer and not so mean to Railey she would let you buckle her up. You just can't be mean." Yes I am getting parenting advice from my 8 year old. I turned and said "you are right Damen, I need to be nicer, but-- do you know how I learned to yell and be mean to get something done, from trying to put you in a car seat--sometimes yelling works." Yes he saw the smile and teasing in my eyes and just laughed but isn't it true we can learn so much from our kids and I have learned that it is just better to let Damen put Railey in her car seat. It's officially his job and he does it well.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

6 Months Old

Kenna is now 6 months old. Where has the time gone? It honestly feels like a big blur. I wish I could somehow slow the time down just so I could feel like I was enjoying every minute (not that I'm not) but maybe savor every minute is a better way to put it. While we were down in Richfield over the 4th she started rolling over, and did it a few times though we never saw it until we got home. She's now a pro at that. The second we put her down she's over onto her tummy and then she's mad cause she doesn't like that all to well. Then after she had that down I started sitting her up and now in the last day or so she is getting pretty good at that. Not that she doesn't still tumble but she's doing it, she's best on the grass. I love this little girl. Not that she's little any more! You should see the size of her thighs. I think she has now passed up Railey from when she was a baby, but her calves (8.5") and thighs (12.5-13"depending on if shes sitting or standing) are the same size as Raileys right now! At what age does it stop being so cute? Her cheeks are so kissable and I am always having to kiss them (well both sets for that matter) Oh please have time slow down for me baby girl, your growing up too fast!

here she is sitting up

here she is getting ready to roll over

she is happy to feel that she has some freedom

she just rolled over, the next picture though I decided not to post it was her screaming

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Saturday, July 17, 2010

Hoopes Reunion

We had a great time at the Hoopes Reunion today. I only took pictures of my own kids and didn't take too many of those so I can't show all the fun but just a little. We got there and had breakfast then were pretty much on our own to visit and play in the water, play horseshoes, buy stuff from all that was brought to purchase, figure out what we wanted to buy at the auction (I really wanted a baby afghan that Aunt Sharon made, but once I tried to convince Mom that's what I wanted if I had another baby, I didn't have to spend money on it). The kids had a blast with their own cousins and even with their 2nd cousins. It was fun seeing all my cousins, we rarely get together anymore, so everyone is grown up by the time you see them again (if you see them again). Steph was here from Hawaii, so she fixed us some pig and that was yummy as was the rest of lunch. More water, more playing and then the auction (Troy was missed as the auctioneer, but his son sure tried hard--why do young people have to die?) After all the fun we had to head home to get Steve back to the temple and me home to prepare another priesthood lesson.

Brianne was sure making Kenna laugh and helped me get a good picture of her.

Railey bought a few bubbles and loved them there and continues to love them as we type out on the porch. Loads of fun and loads of laundry.

This is a picture of Damen with a water shooter thingy but look at that slip and slide in the background the rigged and put together this whole sprinkling system just for a tarp that was used as a giant slip and slide for the big kids, it was pretty impressive.

This was Railey blowing bubbles, it looks like she needed to blow a few bubbles out the bum to push that swim suit out (it was that way all day no matter how many times we tried to pull it out)

Here's the boys playing more with rockets and guns.

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Monday, July 12, 2010

Finally Done

Well I finally got the Mothers and Father Day presents completed for Mom and Dad. Yea I know it's about time. But when you don't know what you are going to do until a week before and then you have to collect pictures from everyone, it just takes time. I love how they turned out though. I am going to make me some. I put a baby picture and a picture of them now and left the other sides for Mom to put pictures in the future. All it was was a 4x4 cut to make them square, then painted and lots of Modge podge to make the pictures all stick and then go over them for a finished look. Best part of it is Mom and Dad love them and they look a lot better than all of her little frames on her end table.

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Sunday, July 11, 2010

Happy Birthday Steve!

Happy Birthday To You!
Steve you are an amazing man and whether you know it or not you have taught us so many things and have loved us in so many ways. We love you and want to just say thanks for being our Dad and husband!

You have taught us to get up on our own to feet and go after the things we want in life

You've given us a beautiful family(dang we have the cutest kids ever)!

You've taken us on exciting, fun vacations

You let us kiss you on the cheeks (never on the lips), and we always want to be with you.

You love to wrestle with us (or so you pretend)

You cuddle us and watch games with us

You take us across fast waters, even when we might be a little scared--to show us that we can all accomplish whatever we want to.

Happy Birthday Steve. Railey was singing all day long so I got her to record it on video for you. Hope you like it. You are one amazing man. We all love you so much and are so grateful to have you in our lives. I don't know how we ever got to be so lucky. Although I can't believe you are 10 years older than when I married you at age 26 (where did the time go). When did we start to get old. I remember when my parents were 36, and now you are (I'm not there yet!!!!).

You are such an amazing dad and even more amazing husband. Hope you have a great birthday!

Here is your birthday present--a motorcycle and a $2 million life insurance policy. Yes they do go together. Here's to hoping you have many more birthdays.

Happy Birthday!

Saturday, July 10, 2010


I've said it before and I'll say it again--Railey loves makeup, in fact it's been bribing her with lip gloss that has helped get her potty trained. But when we found her with the mascara the other day we were more concerned for her sight than that she had played with it. I know the one eye looks bad but I think she had figured it out by the time she got to the other eye because she actually did quite well with that eye! I guess this is what it is like to have girls, I never had this problem with the boys. I love it!

She did not want her picture taken. She was hiding and was made, I guess she knew she had done something wrong.
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Friday, July 9, 2010


We made ribs the other night. We all enjoyed them immensely! Railey so much that we stripped her down to protect the clothes.

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Wednesday, July 7, 2010

4th videos

Here's Seth about to go under with Damen's amazing aim

This is the madness mayhem that was called the fish grab! But Seth came away victorious!

The WEEKEND of the 4th

What a weekend. We headed down to Richfield Friday afternoon and didn't come back till early Tuesday morning. We had a great time with lots and lots of memories made. Mom and Dad have been trying to get us down there for the 4th for many years now but Steves family always does their big swim party over the 4th but we skipped out and made other plans, since we were told the reunion was going to take the place of the pool party (though it didn't).

Saturday morning I woke up and went for a run along the canal path (very peaceful) then after breakfast we were off to Home Depot. Steve and the boys went and made their little projects and Dad and I went and picked out boards for the shadow boxes for the girls blessing dresses. Dad and I came home and got busy while Steve took the boys golfing.

here's working on the boxes

after lunch we decided to take a run through the sprinklers and fill up lots and lots of water balloons. No picture of the balloons cause I was the one filling.

Once again I forgot Railey's swim suit so we made do. She was so mad at me and throwing such a fit that Mom went and found some fabric and we wrapped her up and tied a few knots and she thought she had the most gorgeous suit on. I thought it was pretty cute myself.

see that tan line, she could have gone without a suit and everyone would have still thought she had one on. After dinner that night Steve and Dad took the boys over to play horse shoes while I took the girls for a walk to calm them down before bed. We were literally going all day long and had a blast doing it.

Sundays church didn't go too well for Railey she was so exhausted finally half way through sacrament meeting Steve took off to go put her down for a nap. But it was all good because there were so many visitors there probably wouldn't have been room in nursery for her or primary for the boys. Darc was saying that there were 21 regular primary kids and 36 visitors. Relief Society was the same. I have never seen so many visitors in a ward before. It was kind of cool. But it wasn't till going to church that I finally started seeing what a big deal the 4th is down there. Everyone comes back into town for it. Suddenly I was really looking forward to the next day and all the festivities. Here was a picture of the girls in their 4th dresses.

After dinner on Sunday we headed over to the park to play and run off some of the yummy dinner grandma made for us.

While we played on the slides and got pushed in the swings the boys played a round or two of boccie.

On Monday we woke up and had a great breakfast then headed off to the parade that we had heard so much about. Here we were waiting for it to start.

Now this parade is no Provo parade it's definitely a small town parade with all the businesses and lots and lots of cheer leaders and dance groups and even more tractors and such there are even a few 4 wheelers.

This was Steves favorite. he called it the plumbers float. Sad thing is this guy was more so monitoring the street and making sure people stayed back so we saw him quite a bit and nothing ever changed well maybe the pants got a little lower as time went on.

I don't know if it was being at the beginning of the parade route or what but the kids came home with quite the haul. So much candy is given out. Every one is throwing candy, ping pong balls, Frisbees. The kids came home and dumped their bags into a brown lunch sack and lets just say it filled each of their bags about 1/2 to 3/4 full. Isn't that nuts but I think it will be the only parade that I would ever get Steve back to. He had just as much fun chasing candy for Railey as the boys had. He actually quite enjoyed himself.

Here's the boys waiting for more candy.

Railey would not get off Grandmas lap, not even for candy unless Steve was holding her. See right at the beginning when the fire trucks and police went by to start things off they had their sirens going and it FREAKED her out and she was just content to sit there. I was kind of glad that I didn't have to worry about her at all.

Those that came along spraying mist were a welcome sight!
After the parade we headed over to the park to see all the booths and one was a dunking machine Seth wanted to be dunked and Damen wanted to do the dunking. I will try to post the little video of it at the end it was quite fun!

Here the kids fished and won a balloon that they filled up for you. Yeah it was free but they had fun doing it!

Someone ladies walked by and saw Hadlie and Kenna and said "Oh look at the twins, wait those aren't twins. But look at the legs on that little one Wow those are some legs." Yes they are and we are proud of them, might not be when she's 16 and still has them but right now we are!
So they have a fish grab. It's where they fill up these three pools with water and then dump fish (like they are doing above) into the water and then let kids go and try to grab the fish. The ponds are small maybe 20'x20' and for the 50-60 fish in each one there were about 150-200 kids per age group in each one. It was quite the sight (what we could see of it). Steve and Damen had a tee time so they were gone golfing but Steve made sure to tell Seth to bring him home a fish before he left. I didn't know how Seth would do. I thought he would be nervous to touch the fish and once he had it I didn't think he would know what to do with it so I told him to run straight for Jared and let him take care of it since I wasn't about to touch it. Well by the time I finally found Seth in all the kaos this is what he had.

Oh he was so proud! He told me he didn't need Jared he could kill it but I will tell you no fish has ever been kissed or loved or put up against a boys cheek so much as this one was. We headed home and had it for dinner but Seth was pretty upset that he couldn't have it as a toy, or stuffed animal and that he had to eat it. The disappointment all went away though when he learned that he got to cut it open and gut it. I guess that made up for not being able to keep it. All boy!!!!

Railey had stayed up for the fireworks the night before and we put her to bed but here is Seth and Kenna watching them. The thing about Richfield is they put their fireworks off on top of the hill so everyone can pretty much see them from their front lawn. Which is what we did. But the other thing about Richfield is that everyone buys illegal fireworks so starting about 9:15 and going till midnight you can see fireworks and pretty impressive fireworks. I guess the cops just don't really care. My kind of town. So we sat out and watched all night. It was so much fun!

Here's Jared helping the boys do some sparklers

Here's Damen ( I was working with my camera trying to figure things out so got a black and white to see if it would show up better than the other but it didn't)

Seth with his sparklers
Well after such a fun weekend it looks like the James Family has some serious competition now when it comes to the 4th. We had such a great time and didn't even miss swimming. When we asked the boys they said well we go swimming in warm water all the time at the pool. We asked if they missed their cousins and all they said was we were with cousins. So who knows we may just be in Richfield again next year!