Thursday, May 27, 2010


You won't be hearing from me for a while on here. We are all in Oregon visiting family. I thought I'd at least put on this brief post to explain the break in posting. I'll be back in 10 days or so. :)This is a random picture I took of William getting the girls out of the bath. He brought them to their room in the laundry basket. They thought that was pretty good. Then he loaded them up with blankets and dolls. :)

Thursday, May 20, 2010


I want you to know as I begin this post: I'm caught up! There are no more pictures waiting for posting. :) I guess I'll start taking pictures of uninteresting daily life around here again to have something to share. Actually, we'll have more than enough pictures from our upcoming trip to keep me busy for a while I'm sure.I didn't actually take very many pictures of anyone working. As usual, largely the little "helpers," who mostly play.

Cecily did try to participate in all that we did. We brought her along and showed her how to pull weeds and scoop mulch on to the beds. She picked up this hat that one of her brothers took off and got attached to it. She looked really funny wearing it backwards and being so serious about helping.

Sprinkled with bits of mulch and sweating from under that hat. :)

Amelia napped for most of the work time. She finally came out and joined us.

The boys showed her how the air-conditioner blew air out of the top.


Posing with the flowers for me.

Saturday, May 15, 2010


A gift for the 7 year old.
A little help mounting.

Adjusting the stirrups.

Meanwhile, Cecily is saying hello to "Susie."

Being led out to the ring.

After some direction, Ben is able to guide the horse around the ring without being led.

The horse is so gentle and cooperative. I can see why the young lady teaching Ben feels so confident to have children on her.

We all sat on the grass outside the ring and watched for a good while. Once he brought the horse right up next to us to say hello.

Cecily is puttering around, finding things to do.

A curly, wild onion.

Eventually, we wandered over to the edge of a pasture where another horse was grazing. Cecily was dying to be near to the horse.


This horse was "Lightning."

Another very gentle, child-friendly horse.

Feeding Lightning took up a good bit of time for us while we waited.

Little flowers in the grass.

Millie found a big "umbrella" leaf.

Making sure to hold the reins correctly.

One last shot before he's done. He enjoyed it very much. He learned a lot about guiding a horse with reins. An hour's worth of practice is a good bit.

Kimberly, the teacher, offered for the other kids to mount and walk a few steps on the horse as well.

I think Sam sat on a pony for a ride when he was about 2, but otherwise this is the first time he's been on a horse.

Even Amelia got to have her first little horse ride. :)

Saturday, May 8, 2010


We spent a lovely day with a friend from where we used to live in Canonsburg, PA. The children haven't seen her in two years, but the older ones certainly remember. We had made a plan to go out to lunch, but thought we'd let the children stretch their legs after the drive and before having to sit again in a restaurant. It was a beautiful day and she has a marvelous yard.

Our neighbor had given me some kites for the kids to try and I brought them along to give them something to do.

Everyone's trying out their kites!

Cecily is just watching and occasionally causing trouble as she wants to do it too.

2 kites up. Ben and Amelia. They pretty much ran with them the whole time.

Calvin loved it. He ran and ran and ran. He had the least trouble of anyone with tangled string and snagging trees.

Perhaps he did so well because he was content to look where he was running instead of constantly looking back to see his kite flying. When you try to do both, accidents happen.

William quickly got his string caught on a limb of this tree. Mrs. Roupe helped him until he finally got it free.

Hurray for Calvin! Go Batman!

We briefly went inside Mrs. Roupe's house to circuit everyone through the restroom. Meanwhile, we got to enjoy a few of the many curiosities that she has in her basement. The piece of furniture that is below the fish is actually a phonograph. Mrs. Roupe played us an old record on it and everyone was delighted. Then the kids asked about the singing fish because they had seen it somewhere else before. It looks right at you and sings "Don't Worry. Be Happy." Pretty funny. Amelia wasn't sure what to think.

Eating at Eat 'n Park. Aren't we a spectacle? We sure felt like a novelty there. But we enjoyed it. I hope Mrs. Roupe did too. :) Isn't she brave to be seen in public with us?! (Someone came over and offered to take our picture. Wasn't that nice?)

And we must photograph the highlight of every Eat 'n Park meal: the Smiley Cookie. A big, smiling cookie is such a delight to children. That's a great thing they do.

Wednesday, May 5, 2010


Benny's birthday sure was special. Did I forget to say exciting? Nothing is dull with Benjamin. :)
We fixed up some Strawberry Shortcake for lunch.

We even ate out on the deck since the weather was so perfect.

Ben scoops some berries for everybody.

William doles out whipped cream.

Calvin keeps the swing set company.

Amelia waits until somebody finally passes her a plate!

Ben's dinner of choice was Spareribs. When I asked him if he had anything in mind to go with it, he said without hesitation, "Mashed potatoes with cheese and green onions and sugar snap peas." Good thing I asked!

So excited about his gifts!

What could it be? His brothers know.

A Star Wars light saber sword!

I like the expressions in this picture. Ben is opening something that Calvin got him. Calvin is so pleased and when Ben realizes what it is, he gets a happy face.

It is a monster truck. Ever since the boys saw monster trucks on TV at their Uncle Mitch's house, they've been interested in them. One of the boys got Calvin a couple of toy MT's for Christmas and Ben is excited that he can now play MT's with Calvin.

Uncle John and Aunt Leslie sent a Camper's Knife. Sam and Will got their first pocket knives when they turned 7 too. Initially, they must leave them in the care of Dad to be brought out occasionally to learn how to use them properly.

A gift from William.

From Peter and I, a canteen. (He was so serious about it!)

Now, a gift from Sam. A matchbox car that changes color in water. Naturally, this phenomenon must be viewed immediately. Into the glass of water it goes.



Something from Grammy and Papa.

It takes a minute to figure out what it is.

Walkie-Talkies. He's loving these.

And last, Ben's big gift from mom and dad is a certificate for an one hour horse-riding lesson. He likes this idea!

Blowing the candles. He chose Banana Pudding for his special dessert.


Using the spoon attachment on his camper's knife. A sweet ending to a sweet celebration day. How big and mature he has grown!