Friday, September 25, 2015

Joseph is 12!

I can not believe he is 12!
And as you can see, I am pretty sure he has passed me up in the height category.

 He wanted famous pancakes for breakfast.
Yes, those are venus fly traps. He was so excited to see them and for his new Treasure Hunters book. And, he wanted to go build a train track this morning. Oh my precious boy!
We love you! You are hardworking, happy, loving, kind, helpful, active, willing to try new things and do hard things. You try so hard to overcome the challenges you face. You have become a strong and brave young man. We are so proud of the work and effort you are putting into school, Scouts, and taekwondo. Your example to your younger brother and sisters is so valuable to us. Thank you for your life and smile, it brightens our days! We know we ask a lot and expect a lot from you but you rise the challenge every time and make us so proud. I know you will honor your priesthood and serve your Heavenly Father faithfully! We pray you will continue on the path you are on and receive all of the many great blessings that are in store for you!
Mom and Dad

Saturday, September 19, 2015

My Favorite People

Okay, it  may be weird to call yourself one of your favorite people but if you are wearing an eye patch then it is a lot more reasonable. 
 Lily was given this patch at her meet the teacher event and we have had a good time with it. 

 Samantha wanted to ride a bike like the big kids. This bike was perfect for her but she did not really grasp the riding thing and the best moment was when she got off and picked the bike up and was trying and mostly succeeding in carrying it. 
 This man is amazing. I have to brag about him for a minute. 
A continuous prayer for us is that his company will have enough or more work. There main source of work for Peter is related to storms like hurricanes and hailstorms. Well, there has been a shortage of hurricanes (don't get me wrong we do not want people to suffer but the promise of steady work would be really nice).  Anyhow, Wednesday he had a call from a potential new client.  They are from a firm based in Atlanta doing a bunch of work in Nebraska where there was apparently a very large hailstorm not too long ago.  Peter told them he would be willing to get licensed for Nebraska but could not help but ask how they got his name.  It turns out that on another case a couple of years ago, Peter was the opposing engineer to this firm.  But, they were so impressed with the honest and truthful nature of his report that they decided they would add his name to their database for future use. I have never been so proud of my honest man. He has found that there are many firms that are willing to make their reports say what the client would like it to say to help their case but Peter has never felt right about that.  We have been blessed with a work environment where he could always be honest and have outstanding integrity without any pressure to compromise. This new client could prove to be an unexpected answer to our prayers (we really thought we were praying for a hurricane in a not so direct way). There are blessings for doing what is right. 
 And my life would not be complete without these three big kids. 
They seem to grow more each day and I wish I could slow time down. 
I also wish that I felt more prepared to be their mother through these coming years. 
I do know that prayer and all of the patience and love I can muster will see us through. 
Summer is on its way out  and we have thoroughly enjoyed it. 

Thursday, September 17, 2015

Things I have failed to post until now...

I have pictures from Meet the Teacher which was nearly 1 month ago. 
 Arabella and Mrs. Camp
 Jon and Mrs. Kincaid
 First day of School
Jon 4th, Arabella 1st
Joseph 6th

 Lily meeting her teachers. Above Mrs. Rasco (her son was in Arabella's class at CCDC and we think they are a great family!)
 Mrs. Hammond was Arabella's teacher and we are so happy to have her again. 
 Dad made Peruvian food and it was delicious!
Lily and her first day of preschool! And little Samantha in the doorway, she has wondered why she is stuck with boring me for most of the day 3 days a week. 

Wednesday, September 2, 2015

Mount Rushmore

This is a picture of our faithful car. It was it's first major trip and first trip to Utah (I am sure there will be several more).

 Jon was the first to see Mount Rushmore as we were driving up to it. 
 It really is amazing!
 What a good looking family with 2 random boys on the side. 
 My sweet kids with four great men in the background. 
 Just seeing how Samantha's face would like up there next to Honest Abe.

 Did I mention that it was the first Saturday of the 75th Sturgis Motorcycle Rally?
There were motorcycles everywhere!
 We saw a whole lot of corn fields during our journeys. 
It has its own kind of beauty that I actually enjoyed. 
 This is the World's Largest ball of Twine (in a year that I can not quite remember now).
 You can be cruising through endless cornfields with the thought of traffic as far from your mind as the moon when your daughter might say, "I need to go to the bathroom." 
You think no problem there is a town about 4 miles ahead and then with 3 miles left to go you find dead stand still traffic in the middle of Nebraska all thanks to the county fair.
 Below are a few more pictures from Mount Rushmore. 

Sometimes your just need to stop for ice cream and change the baby who has soaked through her diaper and clothes. You will be crazy enough to give this newly changed baby an ice cream. But then when you see smiles like these, you don't care how messy it is going to get. 
 This last photo was taken at the stoplight near our house.
Those are some happy kids to be getting out of the care soon and to be home at last!
We had so much fun with our families and we are already looking forward to the next chance(s) we have to see all of you!

Tuesday, September 1, 2015

Goodbyes, Hardy Harrison Stock, and Beautiful Country

Friday was time to say our goodbyes.
Final pictures:
 All of the 2014 babies. This will never happen again since Samantha is the end for us!
 Raya is missing from these 2 pictures due to a blow out but otherwise, behold all of the cousins. 
 It was such an amazing week! I am so thankful for the efforts made by all to travel and spend time with each other. I don't have any pictures of us doing it but we had a fun time on Tuesday night doing some Family History activities. Grandma brought some old photos and the kids had to investigate the story behind them. We also quizzed the core Rabner family about funny memories they had from their childhood or about a sibling. It was a really fun night. 

I nearly cried for joy and excitement when I saw the exit signs for Martin's Cove. 
I have never been to this place but have read so much about it and had ancestor's in the Martin Handcart Company and so it is a place of significance for me. 
I had visited with my Aunt Naomi while I was at my parents, she is married to my Uncle Doug Bird who passed away on Wednesday, July 29. She had been talking to me about how he was holding on so long because of his hardy Harrison stock. 
 Hardy is a good word for it. The story of the Martin and Willie Handcart companies is a sad one. There were so many problems they faced and so many things that were already against them but they had faith, determination and a desire to be with the Saints in Zion.
What I found truly remarkable is that all of the Harrison family including the baby lived. All of the yellow names are those that died but not the Harrison family. I am a descendant from George.

 The kids had fun pulling a handcart (or just being out of the car, maybe both).

It is a beautiful place and I wish we could have stayed for longer...someday I will. 
 But we piled back in and continued on. 
Those are beehives out there. There were so many of them dotting the landscape as we drove along. 
By the time we reached, Mt. Rushmore that night, Peter was ready to shop for land in Sound Dakota or Wyoming. I am so glad we made the detour.