Sunday, March 29, 2015

Wedding Day

Nick's brother Nathan got married yesterday and we were all there
 (we made up 1/10th of the guests!).

The beautiful bride (and my new sister-in-law) with her groom. 
 Check out that handsome guy in the background!

The wedding party with the cutest flower girls and ring bearer (tucked in beside Nick and Bill).

Eli looks like a little old man in this suit :-)
The dance party.

My little angels!  They indulged me for this photo,
But, this is truly a more accurate picture of our big family circus taken in the photo booth!

Happy wedding and happy life to Nathan and Oleva!

Saturday, March 28, 2015

First Annual Family Camp

Last Spring Break we went to family camp with our church and had a blast.  We were all signed up to go again this year, but Meron got sick with high fevers two days before we were scheduled to leave and we had to make the decision to stay home :-(

To say the kids were disappointed would be an understatement.

But, Caroline and I brainstormed and decided to hold our very own family camp with boating, swimming, fishing, field day games, a campfire and a movie.

Friends of ours gave us their paddle boat to use and we were off.

Meron perked up between fevers when the medicine had kicked in, but it was a good thing we stayed close to home, because as soon as it would wear off, she'd be back in bed.  No fun.

Next, it was off to the community pool for a swim.

After the pool and lunch, we had "free time" aka, nap time for mom and dad and quiet time for kids.

Then on to the main event, field day games.

We divided into the Green Gladiators and the Orange Crushers.

What's that you say? These teams don't look too fair, me with the toddler and the sick kid and Nick with the baseball boys and our new track star.
Well, we held our own. 

 The suitcase race.

Water relays. He's only a little bit competitive.

Eli was all in!
 A little hoola-hoop action.

Egg races. 

Fun was had by all and the final score:

Green Gladiators 4
Orange Crushers 4

We tied! How awesome is that?

We also worked on courteous communication and the kids earned tokens to redeem in our "camp store."

I think there will be a Second Annual Family Camp at home sometime next year.

Smile Mile Fun

We tried a new sport this season.  Hermela, Caroline and Meron joined a running club and we all really enjoyed it.  They participated in their first official event a few weeks ago, a fun one mile run.

Hermela was the first to run.  She finished with her personal best time
and the other girls did the same in their division.  We were all surprised to see them come across the line so quickly.
FL Gee Gee braved the cold morning air (I think it was in the 50's, for all of you northerners, that's a cold day for us, especially in March).
We're proud of these girls for trying something new (it was nice to have something besides baseball/softball to watch :-)! 

Way to go girls!

Someone's 3!!

It's Eli

Eli wanted to ride the train for his birthday, so we took a little ride around town.

We ended up a cute train themed park, which he loved.

He couldn't quite decide what kind of party he wanted.  It was between Mater, Toy Story, Planes and Thomas the Train.  So, completely out of character for me, I chose the impractical solution and combined all of his choices.

He was excited to open presents!

We all loved his giant cookie cake.

We love you Eli.  You are so much fun and bring joy to us all everyday.  We are so thankful for you and can't wait to see God's plan for your life continue to unfold.  Happy birthday to our happy, funny, smart, active and slightly spoiled boy!

And, shortly after Eli's birthday, we celebrated my mom's birthday with these goofballs. 
I told you it was birthday season around here!

Our Miracle Granny

Granny Pat is one of the most beautiful people I know.

She is Nick's grandmother and our kids' great-grandmother and has always welcomed me in as one of her own since the day we met.

She was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer almost 2 years ago.  She was not given the best prognosis, but despite this, she maintained the best attitude, went through treatment like a champ and recently got a report from the doctor that even he couldn't explain.  Her counts are better than ever and the cancer isn't growing, so with no other explanation for this, we'll just call it a miracle.

We were just able to visit with her this weekend and she's just as beautiful, active and loving as ever, living life to the fullest and enjoying each day because as she said, "That's all any of us has anyway."

She's exactly right.

We love you Granny Pat!

We Have A Teenager!

It's true.  We're old!

We have a teenager. In just a few years, we'll have 6 at one time, but that's another post :-)

Rahel celebrated with this gorgeous group of girls with a trip to the mall for her first make over (not that she needs one).

Both of our families have a rule of no make up before the age of 13 and Rahel is the first one to hit the magic age, so everyone was very excited. 

Checking things out.

Her adoring fans.

The finished product.

We intended to eat cheesecake at the mall, but the wait was too long, so we opted to bring it home instead (because I'm so flexible :-)

Hard to believe our sweet girl is growing up so fast and already a teenager.  We know these next few years will go by just as fast as the past 4 have.  They say you blink and your babies are suddenly all grown up.  I think "they" are right.  This is especially true when your child joins your family at age 9.  We have missed the first half of her life, so we must be even more careful to treasure these moments we have we her. 

Rahel, we are so proud of the person you are.  You are beautiful inside and out and we are thankful for you and can't wait to see where God leads you.

Happy 13th birthday!