Friday, October 29, 2010

Harry Potter Die Hards (well, most of us anyway)

We officially had the first semi-annual Harry Potter Party on Saturday.  Thank you to the amazing Andrea Freeman (or should we say Professor McGonagall) for all your hard work.  So much fun, thank you to all who came! 
The Place:  Hogwarts

The characters:

More character faces to come....

We had so much fun playing Quidditch!    I had the awesome opportunity being the Golden Snitch!  Yes... I was THE snitch.  And let me tell you, I was so sore the next day with those speedy kids chasing after me.  Way to go Brooklyne for being so fast!  Mom and Dad better get that girl in track when she gets bigger! 

The kids had a blast, and lets just face it, the adults did too; especially my crazy husband...Oliver Wood (who for some reason, never got a picture taken that night...don't know how we all missed him).

Here's a bit of how it looked.
video

Check out this Basilisk!  Ahhhhh!


The kids had fun being chased by the Basilisk.  Way to go Freemans for the HOURS of work put into making him!  I couldn't believe how cool he was!

The food was totally my favorite part.  Yes, Harry Potter food rocks!  Meat pies, shepherds pie, potatoes, butter beer, pumpkin juice, treacle tarts, candy apples, cupcakes, chocolate frogs, flying donuts, soooo yummy!
 The kids loved the flying donuts.  Thanks Millar family for putting that together, it was a hit!  Race and Witt thought it was delicious!
Our family had so much fun at the party; just a super-good excuse to get together with friends.  Race is really into Harry Potter; he's known he wanted to be Harry for Halloween pretty much since the day after Halloween LAST year.  We've been reading the first book together and he looks forward to it before bed.  Thanks everybody for the memories!
 Lane, a wizard in training.
 Thanks Kira for all the awesome pictures.  Love you friend.
 My amazing friend Andrea, don't know what I'd do without you!
We love you Harry!

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Crocodile Tears

Isn't this the saddest crocodile you ever saw?  Oh wait, if you ask Witten, it's not a crocodile costume, it's an alligator...

Monday, October 25, 2010

Rocket Man

On my birthday a few weeks ago David came over with his Dad so we could launch Race's rocket he's been working so hard on.  It was so much fun!  Our good friends the Millars came and we spent an hour or so (after my cake surprise!), launching not only Race's rocket, but some other one's that David has built.  It was so amazing and the kids loved it!  We can't wait to do it again!  Thank you so much David for all you do for Race.  We love you Boyce family.  Thanks to my wonderful, fabulous friend Andrea for taking the great pictures!  We're so blessed with great friends.
David and Race on the count down.
More pictures to come.

Stars and Campfires

We've been going out and enjoying the the beautiful evenings without mosquitoes!  I love the Fall, it's my favorite time of year.  Every Football season, we don't get to see Daddy as much as we want in the evenings (he referees), so on the nights he's home we've been taking the telescope out out on the grass to see Jupiter and the moon.  The boys love it, they can point out quite a few things in the night sky.  Anyway, afterward  we built a campfire in the driveway and roasted marshmallows...some great family time.

Amber and Brian brought their boys over one night too.  We love you guys! 

Homework Time!

I just had to take this picture.  Little Lane is getting so big and wants to be one of the guys, so Race got him some paper and pencils too.  This was one of those, "I love being a mommy" moments. 

Friday, October 15, 2010

EXcavating

Race came in from playing outside yesterday crying with a blue nose.  Yep, a big ol' instant bruise across the bridge of his nose.  "What happened?!!" 
"Witten's shovel!" 
Witt came crying behind him.  "It was an accident Mom, we were just estavating."
"What were you doing?  Did you hit your brother with a shovel?"
"No Mom, we were just ESTAVATING! It was an accident."
"What were you doing?"
"Estavating...you know like digging holes for the army."
"EXcavating?"
"Ya, and it was an accident."

So, here's the boys EXcavating today; safety harnesses and all.


And Race's nose is pretty banged up from the day before...but as far as they're both concerned, it was an accident....hmmm.....

I DON'T LIKE SHOES!

Here's Lane when we tried shoes for the first time.  He's still not too excited about the idea. 

If he can't take them off he's either crawling or holding on for dear life to something, screaming all the way...

Me being 30

Monday I turned 30.  It's actually kind of surreal.  I remember when my mother turned 30.  It seemed like I'd never be 30.  It's crazy to think that my 20's are gone.  Not that I'm sad...it's been great chapter in an exciting story.  I know my 30's will be so much more; more because of the blessings I've had while in my 20's.  I've been so blessed.

If you would have asked me when I was 20 what I imagined the next 10 years would be like, I would have had it all planned out,and it wouldn't have been settled down in Camp Verde AZ raising 3 boys.  It's funny where life takes you.  It's funny how dreams change as you get "older and wiser".  10 years ago, I would have told you I would be teaching collage English somewhere, coaching on the side, running 10k's and marathons twice a year and would have had my first book published (always the over-achiever).  Do I still want these things?  YES...but there are things I want more now.  There are things that make me happier now.  I love my boys; all 4 of them!  They are my biggest achievement as I am standing here being 30.  Things are not what I pictured they would be...they're better.   

Don't get me wrong, I still have my list of  "Things to do before I'm 40" for myself.  Stuff like getting my masters, writing and publishing my book, getting back in shape to run a few races twice a year...there's also the "added" items that apparently come as one gets older like taking better care to put sunscreen on outside, flossing more, taking better care of my feet...because I'm starting to notice that my body will get run down if I neglect it. 

There's also the "I wish I knew then" category.  You all know what I'm talking about.  Like:
  •  I wish I wasn't too cool to wear knee pads when I was playing volleyball as a teen because my knees hurt all the time now. 
  • I wish I didn't lay in a tanning bed to get ready for senior pictures and weddings and big trips.  I wish I didn't lay out and burn till I blistered because I just had a pre-cancer mole removed. 
  • I wish I would have taken better care of my teeth as a kid because root canal's just aren't any fun. 
  • I wish I knew when I was 16 that high school doesn't last forever and it is too short to stress out over and take too seriously. 
  • I wish I would have known that life is so much better after high school.
  • I wish I would have spent more time with my family; with my parents as a teenager.  I wish I would have realized how much they really did know. 
The list can go on and on right? 

I'm so grateful to be 30 and to have had my story travel through the chapters it has and the lessons I have learned so far.  Heavenly Father knows me better than I know myself; he knows what I need in my life.  I'm so grateful for his guidance in my life, his strength.  I'm so grateful for his hand that I am holding on so tight to.  Because being Mommy has been the hardest thing I could imagine, but at the same time, I've never been so happy and so blessed. 

Here's to 30 great years! 

And speaking of the great day, I got to sleep in!  Then I woke up to my 4 hansom boys making me breakfast.  They made me Aebleskivers (John introduced them to me when we first got married and I fell in love.  His grandfather's family is Danish, so danish pancake balls are a tradition in the family and now in ours.)



Witten and Race were so excited it was my birthday, they got me a hot glue gun!  It was all Witt's idea, because I'm always wishing I had one when stuff breaks.  Thanks boys!

My dear, wonderful, thoughtful, kind, amazing friend Andrea made me the yummiest cake ever and came over with her family to surprise me.  I must say, it was the best cake.  Thank you friend. 



Then, my sweetheart of 10 years (he asked me to marry him on my birthday 10 years ago!  I can't believe it!)  took me on a date.  I just love this man.  He spoiled me with my favorite restaurant (Zeke's in Prescott, if you've never been, they make the best patty-melt around), my favorite store (Hobby Lobby) and some goofy golf.  I can't believe it's been 10 years!


 It was a perfect day, what a blessed life!

Friday, October 8, 2010

The Amazing Picnic Table

Our picnic table is well loved.  It is a table of many uses:

Last week the table was the top of The Daily Planet where Superman waited...protecting Metropolis from Lex Luthor.


This week due to all the rain, the table served as a dory that was rigged to the ship (our house). 


"The rain is just too bad Mommy, we're going to have to abandon ship and look for an island to live on.  Smee and I will go find an island and I'll come back for you OK?" 

(This is Smee who's been charged with swabbing the deck.)

"You're leaving me on a sinking ship?!"
"Yes, but don't panic, just say a prayer..."

(Smee's now been charged with rowing the dory so the Captain can sleep.)

(Smee's now been charged with preparing the sails; bad weather ahead...what a bossy Captain.)

And yes ladies and fellow pirates, this is the sail. 


The Land of Autism

The Land of Autism is a different place than what most of us are used to.
It can be a scary place at times; especially if you are not used to the new road.  It can make you nervous and uncomfortable.   
It can be a fascinating place; to look at things from a different perspective because sometimes things appear different than what they really are. 

Some days the Land makes you really tired, beat and muddy because the roads are sometimes wet, muddy and rocky; just like other lands can be.
Sometimes it's like driving on a newly paved road; and you're grateful because you feel like you're going somewhere and making a difference.

The Land of Autism can be a tricky place where the signs point in all different directions; when you're trying to figure out if it's just a phase, part of growing up...and if it's not.  It can be a confusing place because you don't always read the road signs right even though you're POSITIVE you did.  You can get pretty banged up; bumps, bruises and skinned up knees. 

It can be a happy place where everybody is welcome.  It doesn't matter who you are, how you talk, what you look like, you can be yourself and feel welcome and loved. 

In the Land of Autism, you have to pack for all kinds of weather.  Sometimes it's sunny, in the 80's for weeks on end...and then suddenly the rain pours and the wind howls and you're not sure how long it's going to last.  Sometimes it's a quick storm, sometimes it lasts for weeks.  Sometimes you start to hate the rain even though you know it's necessary for things to grow.

The Land of Autism can be a frustrating place because of all the crazy drivers that cut you off and sometimes run you off the road; you will get angry, life just doesn't seem fair...because the rules are always changing and sometimes you're the last to know.  Sometimes you're the one cutting other's off.  Try not to.  You get confused.  You don't always know right away how to back up and get back on the road.  But really it's a much safer place to drive than many places outside of the land.  Things could be worse, but you don't realize it at the time when you're sitting on the side of the road, stuck in the mud. 

The Land of Autism can be the most beautiful place you've ever been to.  It is a land of forgiveness and love.  It is a place of faith because it is just too complicated to understand without it.  There are lots of rainbows in the land that make you look up and see the beautiful colors through the rain.  It's a place of hope. 

The Land of Autism can be a lonely place because sometimes you're completely alone.  Because even the people who love you most can't always visit every place within the land with you.  They don't know how to get there...so they stand on the outskirts calling for you when your lost.  It can break your heart.  It can break theirs.

The land of Autism has beautiful creeks and rivers that wind throughout.  There are strong bridges that you've built and crossed;  some that you're still building.  Some bridges aren't so strong, like the rope ones that you struggle across...but yes, YOU CROSSED.  There are some creeks that only have rocks to jump onto and balance your way over; that you've tried hundreds of times to cross...but you just can't yet.  But you WILL. 

In the Land of Autism, there's a lot to learn; just like in all lands.  You will learn how strong and capable you are because of the many steep canyons you will hike down, through and back up.  You will travel to other lands and have so much to offer because of the maps you've drawn out and studied.  You will have confidence in yourself because you've been to the deepest part of the canyons and the top of the highest peeks.  You've built all those bridges and mapped out a course.  You are strong.  You are amazing.  You have to remember this on the days when it's just easier to sit at the bottom of the canyon.  You have so much to offer other lands because of the things that have happened FOR you.

-Teddy-

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Strange Weather

Yesterday we had some pretty crazy weather.  All you Arizonans know what I mean.  Check out the size of the hail that hit our place yesterday!
"Run John!  Hurry and move your truck!"
"Where's the umbrella??"
"We don't have one John, use this!"
A suitcase is a great shield to use against ice!

Lane's Hair

Lane got his first haircut and what a difference it made for him!  My baby looks so big now! 

Before:
   
 Thank you to my dear friend: the lovely, talented Andrea for doing such a fine job!

 After:

What a cutie pie!