Thursday, October 8

F is for Fire Truck

ever wonder what a 4 year old boys dreams look like?

charlie's class took a field trip to the fire station on monday.


owen was a bit of a distraction for the kids. they all wanted to walk beside him and push his stroller.

the only thing that didn't live up to charlie's dreams was that this station didn't have a fire dog. but, they did have station turtles, so that was a cool runner up ;)

and owen, he totally made my day! he's the first babe of ours to be able to wear these chucks. all our other kids feet were too fat. i waited nine years, NINE YEARS, since larissa gave these to jack at his baby shower. totally worth the wait.

beautiful arkansas

chris was off on labor day so we explored mt. magazine, the tallest mountain in arkansas. it was gorgeous.

charlie's my sweet boy and always so lovey. 
"here mama, this flowers for you mama!"

look at that view!

daddy, always living on the edge

funny story.
when we came to the cliff, chris had the kids be as quiet as possible before launching a rock over the side. we waited a good 4 or 5 seconds before hearing the rock bounce off some of the cliffs. the kids thought that was so cool and of course had to try it themselves. well, somehow in the excitement, jack accidentally threw his pocket knife instead of a rock. he was pretty upset with himself. now we joke around about "that time when jack threw his pocket knife off a cliff..."

owen's smiles are the best!

there is a beautiful lodge at mt magazine state park that we stopped at to cool off and have lunch and enjoy more of the views.

september was spent getting into our school/sports routine. jack started football. as is the custom in the south, they take their football very seriously here. we have realized that jack is pretty behind since most of the kids have been playing tackle football since 1st grade, but he's working hard. his team, the steelers, is 3rd & 4th graders and he's definitely one of the smallest boys. he's the youngest running back on the team and has stayed up many nights studying the team's plays. the first few weeks was intense with 5 practices a week, but now with games on monday nights he has practice on T & TH, so its not quite so crazy. let's go steelers!

we spend a lot of time at the field, but the other kids don't seem to mind one bit.

we rehearsed some of our faces while waiting for monday night's game to start...

this is our "i can't believe the ref called that!" face

"how can a 9 year old play so dirty?!"


"that's gunna leave a mark!"

"you shoulda caught that one jack, you shoulda caught that one..."

"... and that one..."

"....aaaaaand that one."

in other news

ellie has finally, FINALLY, started ballet!

she has asked for quite some time, so for her birthday back in february we said she could give ballet a try. it was a long wait until the fall semester started, but she's loving it. she really enjoys going on wednesdays and has a good time, but i think its a little slow for her. she's decided that once ballet is over, she wants to give volleyball a try. she has a hard time making decisions... can you tell???

and charlie is our soccer man again this fall. he loves it and i love that he loves it. i really enjoy soccer more than any of the other sports, as far as watching goes. i don't mind being your typical soccer mom hauling kids to practice in my mini van. can't wait for spring when jack will be playing again too. 

Friday, October 2


i hate playing catch-up, but we had such a busy and fun summer. here are a few highlights from july and august:

jack attended a 3 day football camp at southside high school. playing football with a hundred other boys without his shirt on was pretty much perfection for him. he won a couple awards for his age group, including the longest punt.

ellie spent a few days at art camp with dani smith and was able to craft with a few different mediums, including paper met and clay. she really loves getting her hands dirty.

chris has been putting his new smoker to good use and is working on perfecting his ribs, much to the family's delight. these kids sure love papa's ribs.

we had a back to school feast and introduced a family theme for the school year. jack mentioned having a family scripture during an fhe right before school started and i have seen several other families come up with themes for their school years, so we adopted the idea. chris and i decided that our family needs to work on serving others, especially in our home, so Mosiah 2:17 Serve One Another is the family theme we picked.

we have our theme framed in the living room.

jack started 3rd grade with a brand new teacher named Ms. Weaver. Ellie is lucky enough to have Mrs. Been for 2nd grade. and Charlie man is the biggest preschooler at the first lutheran preschool. charlie goes to school on M, W, F and stays for lunch and recess and is there until 12:30. he loves taking his lunchbox to school, just like jack and ellie get to.

owen hit a few milestones at the end of august. he sprouted two teeth and began crawling. the kids helped teach and encourage the crawling. he's pretty happy being mobile. he now has 4 teeth, with 4 more on the way. chris was finally able to catch a picture of his champers last night.

owen also discovered pickles. along with ice cream, pickles make owen a happy boy.

early august brought my 30th birthday! i think i finally feel like an adult :) i was completely spoiled by chris. he planned a surprise party for me at the smith's and several of our good friends came including the peczuh's, rackham's, and sexton's. i have a hard time being the center of attention, but it was so fun and i know chris and katie worked really hard to make it a great night!

chris also let me bust open a piƱata that was filled with my favorite treats, bottles of visine, chapstick, and 30 twenty dollar bills! I've never experienced anything like it! 
and if that wasn't enough of a celebration, i was able to go up to northern arkansas with my dear friend anna leah and go zip lining! we had an amazing time and hopefully i'll get some pictures soon.

ellie grew some butterflies this summer. she got the kit for her birthday back in february, but it was too cold then. we ordered our larvae and she grew 11 little butterflies from start to finish! it was fun for the kids to check their progress each day after school.

our last few days of summer were spent doing fun crafts, like tie dying t-shirts and making slime, going to the water park, and playing catch in the yard during the evenings.