Monday, August 31, 2009

PLEASE mark your calendars...

As an adoptive mom myself, my heart simply aches for this family. However, anyone who is a parent themselves (adoptive or not), or who has parents themselves (that covers all of us, right?) can imagine and sympathize with how horrific the idea would be of your family being torn apart - due to an outdated legal loophole.

Please attend this fundraiser. I have communicated a few times with this adoptive mom & the event sounds like it will be a lot of fun (great silent auction items too!) and all of the money raised will go to this great cause. If you can't come, but want to donate, there is information on how to do so on their website. OR you (or your business) can always donate something to the silent auction! Every little bit helps.

Please pass on this info by email/blog/facebook to everyone you think could sympathize with these parents and their legally adopted 2 year old son (that they've raised since birth). Let's rally around this family and help them do what most of us take for able to continue raising their son.

If anyone wants/needs more information on this, feel free to call or email me - and if you don't have that info, just leave a comment on this post! I hope to see lots of people I know at the event!

July Wrap Up

Now for the random stuff from July that didn't make it into a post already. During the summer we do lots of eating outside. The kids love it, and I love not cleaning up the mess. Plus, my parents gave Noah a kids picnic table for his 2nd birthday that has really come in handy. Anyway, these first few pictures are of my boys with Michael & Drew. The kids got hungry so I made them lunch to eat outside of course! We had our go-to lunch...good old PB&J, grapes, and juice boxes.

The boys eating lunch.

Noah & Michael.

Lincoln lovin' his juice. What a sweet smile, huh?

Oooooh, I just love that smug little mug.

Sometimes kids just like to scream for no reason at all:

This was another day with the kids at lunchtime. This time we were at Claire's house (Mark spotted this picnic table at a yard sale on his way to work and called for me to tell her - nice work, huh?). Anyway - it was my boys, the Donnellys, and the Nielsens (Zoey & Ezra). The kids played in the water, and then had pizza for lunch!

While living in Iowa for medical school we made some really great close friends. One of those families that we miss is the Merrills. While we lived in Iowa the Merrills consisted of Pete, Brittany and their two darling girls - and this spring they added a cute little boy to the mix! Baby Jett. He is so adorable and I could just squeeze has cute little cheeks right off! I was so glad that Brittany was able to come over with Jett and hang out while in town, and that they came with Pete & the girls on their way back to Arizona. It was so good to see you guys! Here's a picture of Brittany, Jett & Mr. Sock Monkey that I made for Jett.

Noah, Lincoln, Michael, and Zoey at the McAllister's house during a party that my friend Erin hosted.

Lincoln crashed on the couch with some crackers.

Noah in daddy's shoes.
Wahoo! Can I tell you how excited that I am to only be one month behind on blogging now?

Bear Lake & Mom's Birthday

My mom is a Pioneer Day baby (as I mentioned last year on my blog), so often time her birthday is full of everyone else's celebrations too...parades, barbecues, fireworks. I'm sure that can be fun sometimes, and annoying others...but we're glad that it falls on a state holiday because the clinic Mark is rotating at was closed that day! So, we were able to join in on some family celebrations at Bear Lake. My mom's side of the family does a annual get together in the same place at Bear lake every Pioneer Day and we've never been able to go - so we were excited to be able to take the boys up this year!

Check out Lincoln's smile in this picture (you can click on it to enlarge it) - he was beyond excited to be there.

Immediately the boys sat down in the sand and played contently there for quite some time.

It was really windy, but that didn't seem to bother the boys...

Linc wasn't sure what he thought about wearing a life jacket at first...

...but I think that Noah thought his life jacket was some sort of space suit or something - he loved it.

Lincoln had absolutely no hesitation with heading out into the water - wind and waves included. The water was surprisingly warm though, especially for Bear Lake water.

I thought it was amusing to watch Lincoln balance himself in the water and wind though.

"Hi, Mom!!!"

Our little family of four after Mark & I went out on a boat with two of my uncles and cousins (we left the boys with my parents). The waves were huge though & it probably wasn't the best idea...but it was fun.

Noah building a sandcastle with his grandpa.

A quick clip of Lincoln toddling around in an inlet of water.

After we'd had enough of the wind and water we headed back up to "our" spot and the kids played in the sand some more.

After we drove back from Bear Lake we went to my parents house for my mom to open presents (since it was her birthday, after all)! We gave her this cute matching apron/oven mitt/hot pad set and some cookie cooling racks that she's been wanting.

After gift opening was done, Mark took the boys home and I joined my mom & Emily for dinner at the Red Iguana in Salt Lake (my favorite Mexican restaurant)! Yum. It was nice to just sit and chat. Thanks, ladies!
I hope you had a good birthday, Mom! We sure had a great day :) We love you!

Farewell, Elder!

Yup. My brother is a missionary. He has been for over a month, but I'm finally doing a post on his farewell & other missionary-ish stuff. Josh spoke in church on the 12th of July and gave a really nice talk. He sounded like a young man returning from his mission, not just leaving (was confident & his thoughts were well put together and presented). I'm really proud of him and just know that he'll be a great missionary.

Here's a picture of me with all three of my brothers. I realized that we don't have very many pictures of all 4 of us, so I'm glad that we got this before Josh left for 2 years!

My whole family! Dad, Mom, Matt, Josh, Chelsey, Audrey, Chris, Noah, me, Lincoln & Mark (left to right).

A three generation picture for Josh. (with our dad & his father)

Emily & Josh.

Several family members had the opportunity to attend the Bountiful temple (on 7/18) together before Josh left. It was really nice to be all together in the temple. (Now, from left to right again...) Grandma Shirlene, Grandpa Paul, Aunt Linda, Uncle Randy, Dad, Mom, Josh, Aunt Joy, me, Mark.

Josh with our parents.

After the temple, we went out to eat. A few additional relatives that weren't able to make it to the temple met up with us there too. Emily made this cute Elder cake for Josh too! :)

On the evening of Tuesday, July 21st - Josh was set apart as a full-time missionary for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. A few of our family members, and Emily & her parents, were able to be there for the special event. Here is a picture of Emily and Josh before the setting apart...

...and Emily & Josh at the arms-length distance after the setting apart :)

The kids will be the ones who will change the most while Josh is gone. When he gets home, Noah will be starting kindergarten and Lincoln will be older than Noah is now! Crazy. They sure do love their uncle Josh though - and we'll make sure they remember him until he gets back.

Noah's silly pose/grin cracked me up in this picture.

Uncle Brent with Lincoln.

Josh with my mom's parents.

Josh with Emily & her parents. We'll miss having you at all our family stuff while Josh is gone & you're away at college, Emily...don't be a stranger!

Josh with our parents.

It didn't really sink in that I wouldn't see my baby-est brother for 2 years until we drove away (I'll admit that I did cry after we drove away). And, even though I know that Noah didn't fully comprehend what was going on - he seemed to understand a little bit that Josh was leaving for a really long time, and he gave Josh a really big tight hug. That was really sweet.

Mark & I before saying goodbye to the Josher.
The next morning my parents dropped him off at the MTC in Provo, and that was that! He's been there since then - learning Spanish and all the other scripture/missionary stuff that he can cram into his brain in 2 months. We love you, Josh!

Fat Cats

One of the last activities that we planned to do before Josh left was to go to Fat Cat's. If you don't know what that is, it's a pizza/bowling joint. They have really fun breadsticks too. Here's Lincoln mowing his down.

Me & Noah chowing down on ours...

And Josh & Emily goofing around while chomping on theirs.

After eating it was time to bowl. It was the boys first time bowling...what do you think, did Noah enjoy it? Yup! I have to mention...Noah struck this pose all on his own when I pulled out my camera. Such a cute little ham.

Me & Noah.

One thing that's really cool about this bowling alley is that the bumper rails (for kids), that keep the ball from going into the gutter, are automated to the appropriate bowler! So, when it was Noah's turn to bowl, they would drop down - and when his turn is over they automatically raise. Cool, huh? Lincoln just bowled a couple of times on our names though, and he used the rail guide to roll his ball. Here he is giving the ball a push for the first time.

And he loved it! Here he is on his tip-toes watching the ball roll down the lane.
Great idea, Josh! Thanks - we had fun! Oh, and a tip for everyone (in Utah) out there...we ordered Fat Cat's gift certificates on for half off! So, our $25.00 gift certificate only cost us $12.50 (yes, I have sweet math-skills). Just thought I'd pass that on though since I love that site!