Thursday, April 28, 2011

Warmer weather brings...

The kids decided to cool off a little...they filled the area where our irrigation valve is with water and made it their little pool. A gross muddy pool but they had fun. :)



And this is how the afternoon ended.

The girls in the bath eating popsicles and Dylan getting ready for a shower to clean off all the mud and bad smell. :)


Can only image the water fun that will happen this summer...

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Birthday Celebration

We celebrated Mark's mom's 63rd birthday over the weekend. We had a great meal (thank you Mark for your great grilling skills), homemade chocolate cake and a great time together.



The evening was complete with a soccer dual between Dylan and her. I think Dylan won. :)


Happy Birthday Kim!

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Castles & Coasters

A few weekends ago we went on our annual trip to Castles & Coasters. My brother in law is able to get really big discounted tickets through his job (this year we actually got in for free!) so every year we go and get to ride all the rides and golf. This year was especially fun because Dylan was tall enough to ride everything and he LOVES rides. Cadence and Isabelle were also able to join in the fun this time. :)

Israel & Kati and Chad & Kristy Jo were also able to come.

Kati was able to talk Maggie to go on this ride, it goes up and then drops down quickly.


Sometime Isabelle had to "window watch" the rides. She still had a lot of fun!




I had to talk Dylan into trying this green ride out. I said "try it once and if you don't like it don't do it again". He went on it...and then did it again!

Here is how high it goes! And it drops soooo fast. Kristy Jo challenged us girls to all do it together, Kati said I'm not going unless Jill goes thinking there was no way that I would ride and it would be her way out...but I said I'll go but only if she would go. Needless to say we went and I couldn't look out once we were at top because it is so high, and the anticipation of the drop is so intense. We survived...but don't plan on doing it again. :)



This video is of Chad and Kristy Jo going. They were the first ones to ride it. I love the position of Kristy Jo's legs when the ride lets down!



And we ended the day with a round of goofy golf.


We're so thankful to be able to go and let the kids enjoy themselves. There's no way we would pay that much for a day out so it's fun to be able to enjoy it.


Monday, April 25, 2011

Happy Easter

Easter celebrations were a lot of fun yesterday. We started off the morning with the kids hanging out outside (while Mark was on a 9 mile run!) before we left for church. I was able to capture this super cute picture of the kids, the pose was Dylan's idea. :)


After church we headed over to my parents house where Mark's parents joined us for lunch. The table was full of people and food.
Then it was time for the candy search. This year Isabelle was able to join in with the fun and she loved to carry the basket around...she also loved all the candy she was able to enjoy!




Here are all the kids with their goodies. :)


We also celebrated my sisters 37th birthday. Happy Birthday Jolene!



On Friday a package arrived in the mail for the kids from their Aunt Michelle. They are always excited when they get something in the mail because they know it is filled with goodies...and this time did not fail them. Thanks Michelle!



Friday, April 22, 2011

independence in the pantry :)








Success!

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Homemade products soon to come...

Last night I attended a class on how to make medicinal salves and tinctures (concentrates). It was offered through http://www.phoenixpermaculture.org/ . I love this website/group, it has all kinds of great advice & knowledge and it's local!



The picture above is cups that have Chaparral (cresote bush, yes the one found in our desert everywhere) infusion. I thought it was good...earthy tasting. And we made Chaparral salve which is used for skin aliments...cuts, warts, dry skin, etc and also has general antibiotic properties...used for lots of things. Amazing!




I loved the class. It was so interesting to me and I definitely left inspired to start making my own salves for cuts, tinctures for colds and might even possibly try to make my own lip balm & lotions. I realize this feeds into my newly (and accepted) parital identity of being hippie. :)


So if interested in trying a new adventure with me, let me know and I can make you some too. :)

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Through Dylan's eyes

I downloaded my pictures to the computer the other day and realized that Dylan had taken a few pictures when I didn't notice. :) He took these of the girls one day while waiting in the car for me while I talked to Kati in her driveway.

He also took a few in our backyard this last week (these I knew about :))

It's fun to see what he captured and what was important to him!







Saturday, April 16, 2011

Compassion

One of the things that I really enjoy about Dylan's personality is that he is filled with compassion for animals. This last week we had a baby bird fall out of it's nest from the front yard tree. He was so worried about the bird, ooh'ing and aah'ing over it. It was so sweet to see him care for it.

The kids quickly rounded up a box put grass in it and made a home. I informed the kids that the birdy might not make it through the night because it was so small and still really needed it's mama to feed it. To my surprise it survived the night and the day. We brought it out in the backyard in the afternoon and I forgot to bring the box back into the garage for the night...needless to say, unfortunatly little bird was no where to be found the next morning. I think a stray cat got a tasty dinner. Dylan thought that maybe it flew away...and I told him that it might be true, that he took care of it so well that it gained enough strength. :)


Then a few days later another baby bird appeared in the front yard, this one a little older and could just barely fly low to the ground. Because of my guilt of the little baby bird being left out overnight, I felt the need to care for this one as well. We found a tub to put it in and the kids quickly got to work again with making it have a comfy home, food & water. It would hop out of the bin so we put pieces of wood on top. The kids were having such a great time caring for it, and quickly gave her the name Ashley Bird. :)

We came in for dinner and went back out to check on it...and it was gone as well! This time it actually got out by itself and flew away. We saw it in the front yard the next day...but decided that we would let it be and that it could care for itself.


I love the wonder and excitement that life outdoors brings. :)

Friday, April 15, 2011

Friends

This weekend we also had our friends, Travis & Kobie come to visit. We have been asking them to come and visit for a long time and the trip finally arrived! We realized that it has been 3 years since we last saw each other. They are the kind of friends where a lot of time can pass of not talking but when you see each other again it feels like no time has passed by. I love those kind of friendships!

Unfortunatly I didn't get a good family picture (I meant to all weekend but when I thought of it the timing wasn't good :)).

They have 1 son named Thatcher, and he loved our backyard. He played for hours digging in the dirt & watering all the plants. We also had a bbq/get together on Sunday evening of people they are still connected with from the time that they lived here. The kids all had fun playing & hanging out. The picture below is young versus old in ping pong! :)
(Errol & the boys)
It was also Kati's birthday on Sunday.

So we celebrated with some beautiful singing & cupcakes. :)

Happy Birthday Kati!!


Dylan had so much fun while they were here. He started his disappointment of the fun coming to a end early on in their visit with us. I think it was the first night that he shed some tears of sadness that our friends would be leaving...the last night was rough on him with lots of crying from him. He is such a social person...not needing attention but loves the fun going on around him. :)

Happy Birthday Jake!

This weekend was my nephews 8th birthday party! Can't believe he is that old already...time passes so quickly. As you can see from the picture below he had a great time! :) He had so much fun with all his friends over, he is such a entertainer at heart!
My sister hired a magician to do a magic show, all the kids were in awe of the tricks and laughter filled the room. You can't do a magic show without a rabbit...right? Yes, the show was complete with a soft sweet white rabbit. All the kids were allowed to pet her (but Cadence didn't want to come anywhere near it!).

He also taught the kids how to do a few tricks at home. They were all amazed with them and I saw a bunch of them show off to there moms when they came to pick them up from the party. :)


The party ended with some cake & icecream.

Happy Birthday Jake - hope this year is filled with wonder and excitement!

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Weekend Fun

This weekend was nice and relaxing. I decided to try out making homemade soft pretzels for the first time. I made the dough in my breadmaker and instead of making a traditional pretzel shape (mainly because I couldn't get the dough to roll out well) I made pretzel bites. These are them ready to be baked.

You have to boil them first and then dip them in water & baking soda...which I had no idea that was how you got that crusty outside.

Here is the final product. Kinda looks like chicken nuggets in this picture. :) They were wonderful, they were gone very quick.
The kids loved them especially dipped in cream cheese!


Also this weekend Dylan and Iwent out yard sale shopping. Dylan likes to go to sales about as much as I do, so we had a lot of fun together! Anyone who knows me well knows that I really enjoy yard sales and trash pick-up piles (you know the big piles that people put their junk in once a month/quarter). This weekend I found the best trash find I have ever found. Take a look at the picture below...I got all of the patio furniture in someones trash pile! I was so excited. It is in excellent condition, even the cushions. It took me a few trips to get it all home but it was worth the work!! I also found the old window panels at a different house. Our outside sitting area is so comfy and inviting now. :) I also picked up a dresser to re-do from someone on Craigslist. The ad didn't have a picture and when I arrived to take a look at it, I was definatly pleasantly surprised to find such a nice dresser. Usually my dresser painting projects are in pretty rough shape. This beauty had some minor scratches on top but otherwise perfect. So I decided to relist on Craigslist and see if I could sell with just cleaning it up. I sold it the next day for a $130 profit!!



It was a fun weekend filled with randomness. :)

Saturday, April 2, 2011

Alien People - Artist




Cadence learning to draw & create! :)

Friday, April 1, 2011

Little Dancer

Cadence started a ballet/tap dance class through the city of Phoenix last week. Today was her second class and she loves it. All last week she was showing me what she learned.

(She is in the middle of picture with black tights)

The pictures are blurry because the moms have to stay on the other side of the tinted glass of the classroom so that the kids don't come running to mom all the time. :) These two are of her jumping and sliding. Of course another reason why she loves the class so much is because Maggie is in the class as well!