First Day of School...

The first day of school started at 4:30 a.m. at our joke! Kylee and Nick were so excited that they couldn't sleep. Being the good mom that I am I sent them in the other room to watch cartoons until I was ready to get up myself. Even with an early start, the day went well and they LOVE least for now. I am glad that Nick has an older sister like Kylee to watch over him. I am even more glad that the lunchroom and playground are filled with familiar faces so my kids don't feel alone. Nick conquered his biggest fear, the lunchroom, and has adjusted well to being gone all day. Kylee was separated from all of her friends but has managed to smile lots and made a few new friends on the first day. I am pretty sure this is going to be a great year! Austin is adjusting...he shed a few tears as they both left his side and walked into school on day 1 but has been all smiles since and is enjoying my attention!Grateful for good buddies and neighbors...makes a protective mom feel better!
Kylee and Ellie have been friends since pre-school. These two have class right next door so they see each other plenty!

These two continue to have a love/hate relationship though mostly love...Kylee is a great big sister and will take care of Nick while they are at school. Crazy that I now have two kids gone ALL DAY LONG! What's a girl to do?

Happy Birthday to my Hubby!

Big day at your house...first day of school and Tyler's Birthday! Happy Birthday to an amazing husband and father! We love you!

8 is Great!

Happy Birthday Kylee Jo! We are so proud to be your parents and are proud of all the wonderful decisions that you are making. We can't imagine what our lives would be without you. You are the perfect oldest daughter, so full of life and love. We hope you know how special you are...we love you!

The 8th Birthday Bash!

Yeah...I think that expectations were met! She has talked about her 8th birthday party for almost two years now, no joke! When Grandma Jo bought the blow up water slide at the beginning of the summer Kylee knew she wanted a water party. She originally decided to theme it "under the sea" but wanted nothing to do with little mermaid...hmmmm! So, a luau was the next best option. The water slide was a hit along with the hawaiian haystacks we served for lunch. The hawaiian music played in the background (Mylie Cyrus is hawaiian, right?) and the brownie sundaes were served (who needs cake?). What I loved about this party is that it was so Kylee. No pizza or hot dogs for lunch...she had to have hawaiian haystacks! They went over surprisingly well and I even had to cook more rice for the hungry girls. We had a sidewalk chalk contest and the girls all drew a picture of Kylee as a hula girl. It was fun to watch them giggle and laugh as they tried to be artistic. The presents were great (zu zu pets were the hit) and I was reminded once again how lucky we are to be surrounded by so many wonderful friends! It is a good think we are on the "every other year" birthday party plan because I am exhausted! The party goers!
Enjoying her favorite...hawaiian haystacks!

I took this picture because it suddenly hit little girl is not so little any more. She is in 3rd grad this year and all the fun things that LIFE can throw at you will be thrown at her in the coming years!

The non-traditional brownies and ice cream.
We finished off the night by making mud pies in the neighbors backyard. Who needs sand or bark when you can spend hours creating all sorts of fun stuff out of mud?
Happy Birthday to my Kylee Jo. I love you for so many reasons but mostly because you are who you are and you are happy being just that.

Wish I was here...

My parents sent this makes me sad that I am not there to be in this picture with them! This is the home the I lived in in Iowa when my dad was doing his residency. I don't have any real memories of this house, but have seen many pictures of myself in a pile of leaves with my mom and dad next to me. I have heard stories about the walks that we would take and all the things we would see, the neighbors and friends we had, and I can't forget the green bug that was parked in the carport. Iowa is cold in the winter so when the car was parked there my parents would lift the hood and plug in a light to put on the engine to keep it warm enough to start in the morning. I have heard the stories endless times about packing up the station wagon (that they saved and saved for) and loading the moving truck that we shared with the Lind's as we made our way back across the country to Utah. I know that my mom hated being alone late at night so she would keep my brother & I up late to keep her company. My mom was a trooper. She was alone a lot but we never knew she felt alone. My dad worked his tail off and still does. I never remember thinking he was gone a a lot, even as I grew older. My parent pretty much rock! They had no family around but made great friends. I hope that someday I get the chance to travel back to Iowa and see my old stomping grounds for myself. Until then, this picture will have to do!

My little sister married a neat kid from Iowa so they are there for their wedding reception. I contemplated going and it is killing me not to be there....but, my motherly duties call as it is my sweet Kylee's 8th birthday tomorrow. 8 is a big one - one that I don't want to miss! So though it kills me not to be there I am grateful that I am here at home, surrounded by my sweet kids and being a mom myself. I have been alone all week, much like my mother once was. I am drained. Tired. Exhausted. But I am still a mom to 4 pretty cool kids and there is no place else I would rather be!

Did You Know...

....that visiting the copper mines is FUN? Me either! We ventured out the the copper mines with some neighbors this morning. We watched the big...okay GIGANTIC trucks haul the precious medals from the ground to the conveyor belts. We watched a movie that gave us the history of the amazing mines and were reminded that there really are some BRILLIANT people out there. We learned that over $110,000 of metal were donated to the Olympic Games 2002 for the making of the medals and that each medal weighed over 1 pound. And we learned (or were reminded) how awesome our neighborhood is! Thanks for a fun outing! And...I hit 110,000 on our way back! Yippeee!

Saying Goodbye!

Last week Kylee said goodbye to these two cute girls. Jayleigh and Chloe have been in the neighborhood visiting all summer long while their dad was recovering from open heart surgery. They are darling girls...respectful, creative, and fun. We miss them already but were reassured that they would be back over Thanksgiving. We can't wait!

Singing in the rain...

I am pretty sure this is what childhood is all about. The thunder and lightening came and with it came the rain. Lots of it. These boys were in heaven and I loved sitting on the front porch watching it unfold. They were even brave enough to wash their hair in the gutter...perfectly clean water I am sure!

Bear Lake

We just returned from a week long vacation in Bear Lake...I am too tired to post pictures now so this will have to do. Can any MAC users out there tell me if there is any easy way to create a collage? I have a zillion pictures to post!