Monday, July 25, 2011

Happy Jack Turns 4!


Really, it's pretty rare I capture this huge Jack-smile! But who wouldn't be grinning surrounded by all these gifts, cake, and family.
(including Gramma and Grampa Goates - visiting from UT)

Jack said he wanted a "red cake." So we all enjoyed a red velvet b-day cake in his honor. What mature taste for a 4-year-old!

Checking out all angles...

... got... to... get... the... last... 2... candles...

Good job, buddy! I hope your wish comes true.

It was hard to capture all the gift-opening, since it went fast and Josh was trying to do it for Jack. (as usual)
Hmm, why would Jack be opening a new helmet...

For his NEW BIKE!!!!

What a fun birthday celebration with you, Jack!!

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Fun on the Fourth

We began our 4th of July early with a breakfast at our ward. My kiddos were patient to wait for their pancakes, but after that was done, they were off!

I love that Josh is just in to "themes" as I am, so of course, we were all wearing the colors of the day!

BTW, this little girl of mine has charmed almost the entire ward! I have a new person each week tell me how much they would LOVE to babysit her! (brothers too, but she's doing all the PR work)

It's rare to get all 5 of us in the same shot!
(so rare, that Jack just had to cover his face just to be consistent!)

Red Rover!

Duck, Duck, Goose
(Josh is the only boy in his Primary class, and the girls LOVE him!)

But today, Josh got to chase Kate all over the field!

Then he was chased by another classmate, Callie!
(popular boy)

The Hmong-speaking Elders!!
Elder T, from Hawaii (and there is no way I can type his entire name), won the cherry pit spitting contest with a distance of 42.5 feet! The hats were for pure entertainment, so I had to capture it!

Jack had an 'I'm too cool for my bike" moment and refused to smile.

The decorating of the bikes were the highlight of our weekend! I figured I owed them all the frills since I rarely, if ever, decorate the inside of our house for holidays.

Then we were lucky enough to spend our evening with the Davis family. Josh and Jack hit it off with their daughter, Maddie, immediately after they moved to WI one month after us! And their other daughter Sydney can even say "Layla" so we know they are good buddies.

The Kid Table
Hot Dogs, watermelon, juice boxes, chips, cookies!
Totally All-American Kids

This was the last we saw of Jack! He was NOT a fan of the fireworks. And when I say fireworks, I mean the ones we usually refer to as the "illegal" ones! They are very legal, and very popular here in WI. Jack spent his evening inside with the toys... and the babies had gone to bed as well.

The Men
Both of these guys were a little gun-shy, since we are so used to worrying about the cops busting us!

Josh and Maddie

Then the crazy wired-kid stuff started...

We looked over after we heard Josh saying, "Jack, just lay down here so I can jump over you."
Jack dodged the bullet this time!

We had a really great time with this family!

Holidays are so much better when they are full of people, laughing, and fun!

Friday, July 1, 2011


Bear with me. And enjoy all the photos!!! (especially Aunt Noma!)

Until these holidays with "surprise mornings" come along, I admit that I forget how magical they can be! Of course we discussed the true importance of Easter. But the element of morning fun is a tradition as well.

I love this picture of Layla, who has an obsession with footwear. You can see that she completely threw aside her favorites (the slippers) for her cool, new sandals!!

We picnicked and "hiked" around at the 'Our Lady of Guadalupe' shrine, near south La Crosse.
(thanks for the idea Brenna!)

And thanks to our neighbor, who completely spoils our kids, the kiddos were able to keep busy with bubble wands.

This was a very hot and humid day, but so beautiful! I mean, look at all the green.

From what I can remember, the Lady of Guadalupe is the patron saint of unborn babies.
After climbing quite a trail, in the crazy humidity, there was a very ornate chapel along with some other statues. It was peaceful, and there was a reverence to the surroundings.

We are really bad at taking pics of the 2 of us...

This was the perfect walk/climb to really wear out the kids. And THANK GOODNESS we happened to have the stroller that day!

Umm, not a glamour shot AT ALL!

We can't wait to go on more local adventures, since we still have so much to see and do!


And I can't remember when I took these. (maybe last May) But they are the "You know you have a toddler when..." kind of pictures!!

She's crazy!