Thursday, December 3, 2009

New York, Part 1

There's already been a peek into the visit and here are even more pictures of the visit.

EMN and MTN on the plane ride. Both are great travelers and so is Teddy Bear.

Going to Grandma Hitchcock's to get water.

Playing in the playhouse. This house factored big into my childhood and it's fun to see my kids using it now (although it seems much smaller now that I'm older!)

A picnic lunch down at the pavilion overlooking the creek.

Throwing rocks into the creek (or crick).

The bigger rocks are below the bridge and the kids spent a long time hunting for the biggest rocks they could carry and then making the biggest splashes they could.

And yet sometimes, the biggest splashes were to each other. This is at the dock at the small pond.

Hanging out on the Ford Tractor with Nonna.

My big girl - she's growing up so fast!

And my big boy - looking so handsome.

Off to see what Grandpa Tom is up to at the barn. Grandpa Tom has projects and toys and all the fun stuff that little boys love!

Helping Nonna pick out flowers for the planting beds.

Nursing two skinned knees. No summer is complete without a few injuries ...

Hugs from Aunt Phoebe.

Playing a modified version of "Go Fish" with Uncle Andrew and Aunt Phoebe. The kids had so much fun making up new rules as they went. Or was that Andrew ... They all had fun and it's so great they were all able to spend so much time together.

Happy 4th of July!!

Mike and I made dinner for the family on the 4th.

So that's the trip to NY up until the 4th of July. Plenty of time spent with family, catching up and relaxing. We're blessed to have such a great family to go home to!

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Year in Review (or at least since the summer)

Happy December! I'm celebrating the new month and the end of the calendar year by reviewing what our family has been doing (and I haven't been covering on the blog). Today I'll start with photos from our trip to New York in late June and July. Specifically, all the various trucks, tractors and vehicles MTN had the pleasure of seeing while we were there. It was as if all these various sightings were orchestrated solely for his pleasure! And while Grandpa Tom owns several of these trucks and tractors (and so the previous statement is partly true) things like the the log truck and street sweeper were just happy coincidence. MTN was in little boy heaven!

Let's see how many of these names I can get right.
MTN driving the Case.

EMN got in on the action too! She's driving in the photo below :)
Driving the John Deere. Then mowing the lawn. EMN bailed pretty early on (not exactly her cup of tea) but MTN stayed and eventually took a nap in the trailer.

A cement truck came to pour the floor in the barn so the kids got to watch that truck in action. Here the truck is cleaning up after a job well done.
The Walters truck is pretty loud. They enjoyed sitting inside and learning how to operate all the bucket controls. That's where Nonna and I were riding and the kids got a kick trying to dump us out.

The Dynahoe. MTN was overwhelmed by it's size and enjoyed climbing up in the cab.

A replica of the Case that got a workout in the multiple mud puddles.

The Ford that I used to spend hours on mowing lawns. MTN provided his own sound effects until Grandpa Tom would take him out for spins around the field.

An eagerly anticipated pile of dirt for young MTN.

A pedal car that he put miles on.

Some Caterpillar creation that's articulated and dumps. Whatever it is, MTN loved it.

Cousin Peter received a shipment of logs while were visiting. Perfect timing! MTN got to sit in the truck and chat with the driver.

A street sweeper visited too. How often does that happen in East Jewett?? Thankfully, while MNT is there!
A propane truck stopped by Grandma Hitchcock's. Another chance to sit inside and even toot the horn.

And there you have it. The trucks, vehicles and toys big and small that MTN got to see during his summer vacation to NY! A very memorable trip indeed :)

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Barbie Party

In the blog post yesterday I mentioned the Barbie party for EMN and here are the photos from her celebration. She's been calling it her "pretend birthday" since her actual birthday hasn't happened yet. She's very precise, you see, and she's also noted that her parents haven't given her a present for her pretend birthday. Hmm. Anyhow, we had a few friends over for crafts, food and fun and of course, a pinata. She declared it "the best party ever!" and that was even before her friends showed up :)! They all played their hearts out and it was a fun event to host. Happy 5th (almost)!!

Daddy frosted all 48 cupcakes and put a 5 on each. First thing she asked - "why do they all have S on them??"

She's playing with Barbies in the background as I type this post. Did you know that all Barbies have special super powers? I love listening to her role play with her toys. I've already used my special super powers to solve one crisis - the shoes. I think they should all be painted on. One gift was a set of beautiful dresses and so she dressed up all her Barbies (and her new Ken) for a fantastic party but didn't have enough shoes or couldn't get them all to fit/stay on. Easy - the party is on the beach so they can all go barefoot! Mommy super power to the rescue!

Soon after the party was over she disappeared to her bedroom for a long nap.

The day ended with a gorgeous sunset and so Mike grabbed my camera and took several shots. This was the best of the bunch. Enjoy!

Saturday, September 26, 2009


Operation Birthday Party for EMN is now complete and it was a success! So now it's time to reflect on where time went this summer ...

Let's take a few steps back in time to earlier this summer. These are a random smattering of photos with noteworthy events all shown in chronological order (I'll get to our big trips soon ... I promise). First we have kite flying on a gusty day in mid-June. The picture makes it looks better than it actually was but hey, we were out there, we tried it and then packed up the kites for the beach where the kids learned what a really windy day was like.

Next up was Bergesfest in Boerne. We attended the carnival with some of our squadron friends while the guys were all on an airshow trip back to the east coast (and coincidentally meeting Angelina Jolie). The carnival was a huge hit! The kids went on lots of rides and crashed on the trip home. Below is one of their "roller coaster" experiences, which was short lived. The tamer rides seemed to be more preferred by MTN. EMN loved the fun house and spent most of her time in the rotating tube at the end, like the closing scenes of Grease (which she's never seen).

Keeping busy by making bead necklaces and other various creations. This has been one of the best toys ever! They make ropes and decorations for the lamps and all sorts of things. I love it because they play together, use their imagination and keep coming back to the same toy.

July 18 was the 8th anniversary of Mike's F-16 ejection over Turkey. We had some friends over for dinner and celebrated the fact that he's safe and still with us. We have a few pieces of the charred jet remains in Mike's office as a souvenir of that day (as if we could forget).

EMN making a batch of Rice Krispy Treats in July. She couldn't believe how easy it was and hopes we do it again soon :)

Riding bikes has been very popular this summer and this is just one day of many. They like to ride across to the light pole seen across the street and then back.

We had our part of our downstairs painted and here's a glimpse. We're very pleased with the results! There's another wall of red in the kitchen and more shades of yellow/gold throughout the downstairs. Now we're ready to finish/continue decorating - it's a long process apparently!

In July kids attended Vacation Bible School at our church while I worked in the craft program. The theme was Camp EDGE and EMN is still singing songs she learned at VBS. We even bought the DVD so she could fine tune her dance moves and she watches that on a regular basis. I knew she would enjoy it, I just had no idea how much! MTN had to be in the nursery (pesky potty training) so his experience was scaled back, but since he's been watching the DVD he's caught on to the music at least. I enjoyed my time working with the youth and other crafty ladies. It's been nice getting more involved at church and learning more about all the programs they offer.

Worn out after a day at VBS!
Watering the plants with their new watering cans (hers is Ariel, his is an oil can with Lightning McQueen)

Fun in the sand box, newly filled with 300+ pounds of sand.

Beading bracelets as a "Thank You, Good Luck and We'll Miss You" gift for M'Audra, our babysitter. She's off to college and she's just the best!

EMN loves loves loves to draw and color recently. This is a self portrait and she requested I photograph it. So here it is for everyone's enjoyment.
Nothing like two empty moving boxes and a couple of blankets to fill an afternoon! I'm just happy I finally emptied two more moving boxes!! It's been a year that we've been here now and it's high time permanent homes be made for some of these items. The kids played with these boxes for days - they were rocket ships, boats, houses, forts, beds ... just great play items. So glad I could stimulate their imaginations!
August 2nd was our simulated Father's Day since Mike spent his on an airshow trip (and meeting Angelina Jolie - I have to keep working that in there because it's fun to tease Mike). The kids made cupcakes for him and definitely enjoyed the fruits of their labor!

On that note, I'll end the whirlwind update. Hope you enjoyed the random photos! Happy Fall!