Saturday, March 31, 2018

Phone Pictures

 Archer on a date with me and the mall, food court and VR gaming.  He says, "If you like something, you put a lot of it in your mouth!"

On a date with me at the mall, Wingers and VR gaming.  Brody says, "Don't worry Mom, I won't step on a crack, so you won't break your back."

 Brody is a Cub Scout!  He was so excited!

 Dad going to school with the kids in the morning, volunteering as a Watch Dog.  He got to make the morning announcements, help in the kids classes, eat lunch with them, and play with them at recess.

Meeting Auntie Rie's cat Opal.

 On a date with me to try Greek food.  Palmer turned out to be a big fan of the gyro, like his mom.  This is now his favorite restaurant.

 On a date with me at the mall, food court, riding animals and visiting Santa.  Santa told Avonlea she looked like Barbie; she thought that was the best!

 Seeing the lights at Temple Square.

 Early Christmas present for Greg, Mannheim Steamroller.  We both thought it was the best concert we'd ever been to.

 Greg loves smoking yummy meats for the family.

 I caught the girls having an impromptu ice cream party after baths.

 The kids giving Dad lots of love on his birthday.

 The spread for when I hosted book club in February, book entitled: How to Find Love in a Book Shop.

 Brody looking cute in his new glasses.  He was amazed at all the details and textures he could now see.

 Family fun at Jump Around Utah.

 Violet has a strange love of underwear.  When I am doing laundry or setting out the clothes for the next day of school, she likes to steal the kids' underwear.

 Enjoying our favorite park, Lodestone Park.

And afternoon spent rolling around the skate park.  Violet was crazy and thought every slope was a slide.  I caught her many times from falling of the edge of a steep incline.

Tuesday, March 20, 2018

Opening and Closing of Bye Bye Birdie

The cast has a tradition of going out to dinner after opening and closing night of the play.  For opening night they went to Applebees.  Rie, Brody and I had attended the show that evening, and so we tagged along with Palmer.  We were all very tired, but happy and feeling silly.

Closing night of the show, Grandpa and Grandma Hess, Greg and I were in attendance.  We made sure to get a picture of us with our star, but left him to party on his own with the cast.  They cleaned up the stage and backstage and then went on to Village Inn.  Palmer came back utterly exhausted but so very happy!

We are a little excited to be done with the show and get back to a slightly less busy family life.  But also saddened to see Palmer leave behind an experience that has brought so much joy, love and friendship into his life.

Sunday, March 18, 2018

Palmer in Bye Bye Birdie

Palmer auditioned for Bye Bye Birdie at The Empress Theatre early December and was thrilled to get the part of Randolph MacAfee.  He rehearsed for months.  The schedule and demands proved to be a lot for a nine year old, but Palmer loved it all so much and never once complained about having to spend the majority of his weeknights and weekends at rehearsal. 
The play ran the end of February through the beginning of March.  He had a lot support from family and friends coming to see him perform, which we were so grateful for.  The show sold out it's closing week.

He really did so well!  He is a natural on stage.  He has always been a child with a lot of enthusiasm and expression, and he sings well, so the stage is a great fit for him.  We are so proud of our little thespian!

Wednesday, February 14, 2018

Eighteen Month Old Violet

Violet turned eighteen months on Valentines Day.  She surely does hold a special place in all our hearts.  Recently, Greg has adapted the motto for our kids to "treat each other they way you would treat Violet."  They fight, as all young siblings do, but they are all kind and caring towards Violet, all the time.  Violet took a while to start walking (16 months), but once she did, she just took off!  She is all over the place.  She has no fear of climbing or exploring unknown areas.  She had started saying more words, although she never does them on demand.  She is strong willed, and just plain strong.   She recently had some x-rays (just checking that all is well with her bones since her broken arm was the product of such a slight injury), and it took seven technicians to hold her down.  They all remarked how surprising it was that she has so much strength.  She is a whole lot of personality in a very small body.  This is what is going on with Violet at eighteen months.

She's learned: to walk, to say and wave hi and bye, a couple animal noises (baaa, rawr, woof), to say peek a boo, to blow kisses

She likes: being outside, her family, playing with kids, dancing, Baby Einstein shows, playing on our phones, eating and snacking... almost constantly, baths, slides and other play equiptment, binkies, her two blankies, being held, cheese, apple sauce and suckers
She dislikes: being alone, not getting attention

Things about her/she does that makes us laugh: awesome dance moves, how excited she gets when we understand what she wants and meet her request (huge squeals, her whole body shakes), big toothy smiles, happy giggles and belly laughs

Tuesday, December 26, 2017

Christmas with Family

On Christmas Adam, Grandpa Kelly and Grandma Kerri came to town, and the Hess side of the family got together for dinner at our favorite local Mexican restaurant.  I sadly didn't think to take a picture.  After dinner Grandpa and Grandma came back to our home and we exchanged gifts.  They spoiled the grandkids with some fun stuff like: motorized cars that ride on a track for the younger kids and Google play cards for the older boys.

We spent Christmas Eve night with the Nichols side of the family.  We had a meal of various appetizers and cake (I made caramel praline torte).  The children all received some little gifts sent in a package by Grandma Betty and Pappy, and cards with money.  Grandma and Pappy kindly sent the adults some Christmas money as well.  Then we had a gift exchange, where everyone opened one gift, opened by the youngest up to the oldest.  We ended the evening opening homemade gifts between us sisters.  London gifted service coupons, Sariah gifted homemade cooking extracts and I gifted the game Outburst with a special version of the game with top ten lists based on our family members.  We played the family game that evening.  It was really fun!  I think it's my favorite angel gift I've ever made.

On Christmas evening we went to Aunt Emily and Uncle Aaron's house.  Our kids were all so tired when we arrived, they just passed out on the couch.  Emily made a meal of prime rib, potatoes and other yummy sides.  We brought homemade rolls and scalloped corn.  After some sustenance, the kids perked up a bit and exchanged gifts and played a board game.  Grandma Nancy and Grandpa Randall had planned to join us, but they both were very sick with pneumonia and stayed home to rest.

Saturday, December 16, 2017

The Twins and Their Extracurriculars

We had a busy Saturday morning!  Archer had his last basketball game and Avonlea had her dance recital, at the same time, in different cities.  We were able to make them both by leaving one event early and going to the other later.  And thankfully Auntie Rie came to the rescue and helped us get out the door by doing Avonlea's makeup as I did her hair and then took Archer to his basketball game, and cheered him on until we could arrive.

Avonlea did awesome at her recital!  It was so cute watching her on stage.  Even before the lights and music came on I could see her silhouette jumping up and down in excitement.  She is one of the youngest in the class, but she kept up great, and danced with a lot of enthusiasm.  She has been taking dance since the school year started with her friend Emily.  She loves dance class and looks forward to it every week.  She loves to wear her dance clothes, and she was thrilled to wear make up for the performance!

This was Archer's first try at basketball and he has been a natural!  He has really loves the sport and asks throughout the week how many more days it will be until his game.  We have all enjoyed going to his games and cheering him on.  He always makes a couple baskets each game.  When we arrived on Saturday, just after half time, he had not scored any points yet.  When he saw us in the bleachers, he became very determined and made sure to get a hold of the ball and then charged his way to the hoop and scored.  As he got his medal he told me he was crying happy tears!  Haha!

 Good job Twinkies!  We're proud of you and your hard work!

Monday, December 11, 2017

Gingerbread Houses

We decorated gingerbread houses.  It is always one the the kids' favorite activities each Christmas season.  Violet was to excited about the gingerbread and dug into hers right away.