Thursday, May 26, 2011

Birthday Book

Ryan's kindergarten teacher had a wonderful tradition for each of the kids' birthdays. Ryan chose to take brownies to school and then got to read his Birthday Book to the class. Ryan and I put his birthday book together. Once he shared it with the class his book became part of the classroom library, along with "Miss Bindergarten Gets Ready for Kindergarten" and "Where the Wild Things Are."

I was glad for the excuse to go through and scan some of Ryan's old pictures from his younger years (pre-digital). I thought you might enjoy a look at his Birthday Book.












Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Friend Party

This year Ryan got to have a party with some of his friends. We played games and had loads of fun.

Ryan really wanted a pinata this year. I was cool with the idea, but wanted to put something in it besides candy and junk toys that get strung all over the house. We filled the pinata with pretend coins. Once the pinata was broken the coins went flying and the kids grabbed them up.

Once I made sure everyone had about the same number of coins, they got to spend them at this Concession Stand. It was run by these by these two handsome fellas.

Kids could buy juice, popcorn, corn dogs, chips and other goodies. I think it was a real hit! I kind of assumed all of the kids would want to buy the same things, but it was interesting to see how each child spent their spoils.

Here's the crew.

The cake.

Make a wish Ryan!

You are one handsome Seven-Year-Old!

Monday, May 23, 2011

Pre-Party Celebrations

The night before Ryan's birthday we took him to Chuck E. Cheese for family night. It was a great celebration for all...well, with the exception of Lydia, who had a panic attack as soon as Chuck E. showed up.

This was how Lydia looked the entire time we were there, even after we went to the back closet and showed her the Costume that Chuck E. Cheese wears. "See Lydia, it is just a costume!" It was no use, as soon as he came out to greet the kids she went ballistic and Mike had to take her home.

Ryan was "over the moon" excited to hang with Chuck E!

The next morning it was Ryan's actual birthday. It just so happened that Ryan's kindergarten class had planned a field trip to the Zoo that morning. Lydia and I tagged along to help Ryan feel extra special on his special day.

All of the kids rode the bus back to the school, but I got permission to keep Ryan with Lydia and I at the Zoo. We had a nice lunch and then Ryan got to pick a special prize from the gift shop...a little stuffed Meerkat.

I couldn't resist taking this pic of them with the beautiful blooming Irises.

Sunday, May 22, 2011


It's official...well, and has been for awhile now, as I'm 23 weeks. We are having baby #5 in September. I was at Yoga the other day and was explaining to a few people why I had missed so much lately...That morning (or anytime of the day or night) sickness is tough stuff! A few of the older women asked, "Oh, how sweet! Is this your first?" "Flattering...but no, not quite," I explained. "This will actually be our FIFTH." (I'm sorry, did I just hear those words come out of MY mouth!!?) Then, my good friend sitting next to me added, "Yah, she's one of the crazies." We all laughed. And since then I've completely owned it. We are definitely a little crazy! Point well taken! :) Even so, we are all getting really excited as we get to know more about this little one that will be joining our family.

Some things we know about this babe:
1) She is a girl. Lydia is over the moon and already picked out a name for her--Hello Kitty. Ya know, it is hard NOT to consider it when realizing that there will not be a SINGLE OTHER girl in her kindergarten class with the same name. "Hello Kitty Dildine" have to admit it has kind of a ring to it, right? ;)

2) She likes music. She totally starts a movin' and a groovin' when we watch American Idol. I can't really tell if she's a Scotty or a Lauren fan, though. She also likes rides in the car. She always starts in on some serious movement.

3) She's an acrobat. In the 20 minutes that we were at our Fetal Fotos ultrasound, she had done 180 degree somersault. This was helpful because in her first position the chord was right between her legs. Once she flipped, we could tell that she was a girl for sure. You can see evidence of her flip in the pics above. In the first her head is down and in the second her head is up toward my ribs. We also got to see her have the hiccups and suck her thumb.

4) She will have a whole group of older siblings just waiting to love on her and protect her. When we asked Ryan what he thought we should name his sister he replied, "Rosie." When we asked him why that name, his response was, "because it's a very useful name, don't you think?" Ryan is already looking out for his youngest sis. We'll definitely have to keep "Rosie" in the name game, too.

Every day I wonder more and more how I'm going to be able to handle crew of five. It can be daunting and overwhelming to think about, especially when you are pregnant and exhausted. I just know that the big payoff will be when we get to hold that little bundle. I'm pretty sure that we will be so glad that we are part of the crazy club.

Saturday, May 21, 2011


Both of these boys are really starting to come along with their piano skills. We enjoyed watching both of them play at their recital. Hope you enjoy the video clips, too! :)

Danny playing his piece: "The Dancing Bears"

Danny's Video

Nathan playing his piece: "Feelin' Good"

Nathan's Video

Tuesday, May 17, 2011


Danny has been studying Idaho History this year. He was required to have a covered binder to put the year's worth of projects and papers in. So, I dug back in my memory to the days that I was in Young Woman's, and helped him create this beauty. Those skills you learn do come in handy! He thought it was cool how it mixed old fashioned with new and hip. The neon green almost perfectly matched his Vans that he wears to school every day.

Sunday, May 8, 2011

Mother's Day

Mike put together a very nice dinner on Mother's Day.

He and the boys set this nice table and prepared salmon, rolls, watermelon and salad. As a special treat Mike got chocolate covered strawberries.

As a tradition, we try to have a Mother's Day photo shoot with the kids and I. We have it outside and in our Sunday clothes. Well, this year it was pouring rain and the kids had mostly changed out of their Sunday clothes before I even had the energy to mention it. So, this year's shoot was not as glamorous or organized.

Later in the evening I got to open a few little gifts from the kids. When we all went in for a group hug, Mike took the opportunity to add this shot to our Photo Shoot. The kids all have strawberry stained faces and you can see how baby #5 was pretty intent on being part of the photo op festivities. It is nice to feel so loved.

Sunday, May 1, 2011

Reason #3

Reason #3: Photo Ops
Like I mentioned before, there are oodles of reasons to love Weddings and Blessings, but my last Top Three Reason is the great pictures that you get. Here are a few that I couldn't resist.

Ryan with Great Grandma Smith

Bones! Love it! An older cousin teaching a younger cousin the ways.

My mom with her newest Grandbaby, Lanie

Check out these blue eyed babes.

Story time with Grandpa Swensen

An action shot of all the cousins (I guess minus Lanie) eating and chillin' in the backyard. I wonder what they are chatting about.

Three girlies all ready for bed.
What a great weekend! Thanks for the wonderful visits, the hugs and all of the perfect memories!