July 6, 2012

Addie's 8th Birthday!

Adeline turned 8 in December 2011.  She was so excited for this birthday because I had promised she could have a friend party.  I always hesitate to have a bunch of kids I don't know come over and I am definitely not ready for the slumber party experience, but I played along anyway.  We invited neighborhood girls and a few of our friends from around town to spend a few hours with us on a Friday night.  We ordered pizza, ate cake and ice cream, watched the movie "Matilda", and I personally gave every girl a little manicure/pedicure.  I had no idea how time consuming it would be to paint 10 little girls fingers and toes, but in the end they were really excited about it. 

Saylea (sp?) gave Adeline tickets to the Nutcracker, so the next day Adeline and I headed out for a girl's day with friends.  Pepper didn't come with us, but she was sad enough to chase us out the door and join us for a picture.

Adeline was baptized by her dad on December 4, 2011.  Her birthday landed right on Sunday and she requested that we make it happen that day.  We are so proud of the little girl she is. 

Pepper's First Birthday! (July/August 2011)

We had a strange summer this year (2011).  Kyle had planned to take a week off from work in June, but our intention was to spend the week around town with the kids.  In a strange turn of events, we bought a new car, almost sold the old one, decided to sell it to my sister in Arizona, and decided to deliver the car personally!  With only a few days' notice, we were packed up and on the road.  It took three days, two nights in a hotel, a LOT of 'put on your seatbelt' reminders, and finally we made it!

The three big kids stayed behind in Arizona and the two littles enjoyed 5 solid weeks of undivided attention.  Pepper actually turned one during their absence, but we delayed celebrating until they returned. 

Pepper's favorite present was having her big siblings with her again.  And seeing Grandma and Grandpa Hunter!

I was terrible about pictures, but Grandma and Grandpa drove the kids across the country back to us in Wisconsin.  They had so many adventures, including crossing borders of states just to say they'd been there, seeing Yellowstone for the first time, seeing Mount Rushmore, and playing the license plate game.  By the time their trip ended, they had every license plate, except Hawaii.

Before Grandma and Grandpa left to go home, we drove with them as far as Nauvoo.  We stayed a couple of nights and explored this amazing historical landmark.  This visit inspired me to read my Great Great Grandpa's autobiography (Benjamin Franklin Johnson).  It was a great journey with our little family and also a great testimony building experience for myself.

Some highlights about Pepper at one-year-old:

*Pepper started walking when she was a little under ten months - our earliest walker by a few weeks.
*By her first birthday, Pepper was mastering the art of climbing on the table and falling off benches.
*Pepper moved into Addie's room right around 10 months.  She has slept great in her crib with her big sister.  Adeline was the only child we could trust to sneak quietly into bed each night and not wake a sleeping baby.  Pepper's big sister really loves her!
*Pepper still takes two naps a lot of days, but is working down to just one.
*Everyone loves Pepper.  She has so much personality at 1-year-old. 
*Church is a big challenge with Pepper.  She can't make it all the way through the block without her nap.  We're in a stage where one of us has to take her (and usually Truman) out into the halls during sacrament (from 9:30 to 10:45), and then we usually end up buckling them both into carseats for the second hour and letting them both nap until the third hour (11:40).  Sometimes Pepper sleeps the whole time and one of us will have to sit out in the car with her until church is over.  Luckily we have callings that let us do this.  I am secretary in Young Women's and Kyle is a teacher in High Priest Group, so we are able to stagger the days we are on baby duty.  This stage won't last long.
*Having Pepper and Truman only 16 months apart is a lot like having TWO babies.   Luckily, they really love each other and Truman is an AMAZING big brother.  I don't know how we would make it if they fought or picked on each other (enough of that with the older kids).   When they do get into squabbles, it is usually Pepper being the aggressor.

April 18, 2011

Kid Stuff

#1 At some point in Penelope's first few months of life, her nickname was shortened/modified from Pepper to Peppy and finally to Pepsi. Then it became a joke to call her "Diet Cherry Pepsi," 'cause I love that almost as much as I love her. Now she can be called any one of a dozen nicknames.

This morning I asked Kyle to ask Guthrie to bring me a Pepsi (at 6:30 in the morning, in case you were wondering). Guthrie came downstairs holding a can of Diet Pepsi with a really confused look on his face (it was realllly early). He put the can on my desk and then looked at me and waited for some kind of response. I stopped working, took hold of the can, and told him "Thank You!!" He looked relieved and said, "Oh good! I thought dad meant I should bring you the baby."

#2 Sullivan has had a world of ear trouble. We noticed he seemed hard of hearing over the last year or so, but it wasn't until the pediatrician noticed that he always seemed to have fluid in his ears and finally sent us to an ENT that we realized there might actually be a problem. We spent several months trying to get the fluid to resolve naturally and get his hearing up to par, but finally resorted to having tubes put in. We have noticed a world of difference!

The other day Guthrie and Sullivan were trying to have a conversation while in two separate rooms with Mario playing loudly in the background. Guthrie called something out to Sullivan several times. Each time Sullivan would yell back, "What?!" Finally Guthrie was fed up and walked into the room saying, "You got those tubes in your ears, but you're still deaf!" Sullivan looked at Kyle with a concerned expression and said, "You're right. Daddy, I got these tubes and I'm still deaf. What a rip off!?"

My 4-year-old is so eloquent.

#3 Adeline brought home a short essay titled "If I were queen for a day. . ." Hers said, "If I were queen for a day, I would tell people what to do and RULE THE WORLD and ask my mom to get me whatever I want!"

She would RULE the world, but she would still have to ask her mom for things. We're raising her right! :)

March 29, 2011

Lessons from Dax.

So my baby brother, Dax, is on a mission in Germany. Apparently something in my last letter came across as judgmental.

An excerpt from his reply: Don't worry. Everyone is a little.... Judgmental... We could probably all afford a little inward glance.... if you know what I mean... Except me. I only have a mote in my eye. I could help you with that beam though.... bible jokes! Get 'em while they're hot!

That boy!!

Really, though, I'll take that kind of chastisement. :)

March 10, 2011

September/October 2010

We went on a little jaunt to Green Bay. We stopped by a little zoo and. . .ummmm what else? Well shoot - that's what I get for not writing it down sooner. I remember having fun.

Adeline and Ella checkin' out the animals.

Read that sign. . .get it. They're spitting (raspberry style).
Two months old! Why didn't I hold you more? And stare at you more? Good thing you're still a baby right now - or I would be totally mad at you. Instead, I'll hold your fevered self in my arms (now at 7.5 months).

The Gasall Family has become one of our favorite go-to families for fun. They invited us to a family scavenger hunt. Adeline wanted to play in the eat-the-apple game. Hard when you're missing your two front teeth. She rocked it. But didn't win.
Thanks for holding our crap, Pepper.
Done yet?

Halloween 2010

These don't need much explanation. Harry Potter, Tiger, Spiderman, Cat, Butterfly. LOVE.

deja vu

I guess Truman takes a lot of naps. . .and that's the only time I feel relaxed enough to think of taking pictures. I sure wish I could prove that there are more kids in this house.

End of October 2010

Thanksgiving 2010

Keara and Alan drove from Davenport, Iowa to spend Thanksgiving with us! I am lame-O and have uploaded the ONLY 5 pictures that were on my camera! What on earth is wrong with me?

We had 8 kids in the house with only cold, dreary weather outside - so we had to get pretty creative. Homemade play dough was a big hit. . .for about half as long as we wanted it to be. :)

I've got two babies. Caleb is about Pepper's age. Isn't a cutie patootie?
Me again! 'cause when there are only 5 pictures, you don't get to edit.
Probably my favorite picture. I can totally hear his voice in this one. He sounds just like Goob from Meet the Robinson's. Cuteness.
Keara and Alan were SO fun to have. Kyle ended up having to work on Thanksgiving (call - so overnight at the hospital). Thankfully (get it, THANKSgiving?), Keara and Alan were willing to celebrate with us one day late so he could join us. It ended up snowing on Thursday night, so Friday morning Alan got up and shoveled a few inches of snow out of the driveway before Kyle got home. Sweet, ain't he? We had fun listening to kids chatter, talking about life, eating and eating and experimenting with our very own Thanksgiving food. The verdict is that it was a LOT of fun - and I'm already wondering what we'll do next year for Thanksgiving if they aren't around to do it with us!!! AHHHH!

I should also note that I tried to talk Keara into going with me and a couple friends to the after T-day sales. She totally denied me. . .which was maybe good considering I left at midnight and didn't get home until after 7:00 a.m. No sleep for me!! I came in the house, showered, and then got to work making our Thanksgiving meal. I'm thinking it was maybe not worth it monetarily - but fun nonetheless. I ended up taking back almost everything I bought that day. Again, what is wrong with me?