14 July 2016

Greetings From Kansas!


I can't believe it's been sooooo long since we've posted to this blog. It's been almost 2 years.  A lot has happened! But we're enjoying all our new adventures! 
In February 2016 our family moved to Kansas! 2015 was rough for our family! Ryan lost his job twice due to economic cutbacks and jobs in Indiana were scare so we broadened our search and after many, many first, second, and even third interviews we ended up in Wichita! Ryan is working for a city just outside of Wichita (Valley Center) and he likes the job. He does a lot of different things. One of his biggest projects has been spearheading creating a downtown main street program. I'm still staying home with the kids.  I have also started crafting a lot and have opened an online Etsy Shop where I make and design lots of different things using paint and vinyl.  It's a lot of fun and while it isn't a huge money maker for our family (yet) it helps support my crafting habit and lets me not worry so much when I want to try something new.  We love exploring Kansas and the surrounding area.  
Our kids keep us really, really busy! Annalyse will be 7 in August and the twins, Grand & Lauren, will be 3 in October!  This past memorial day weekend, we took a trip to Vicksburg, MS to visit my brother and his wife! We had so much fun in the short time we were there!
Annalyse is almost 7 started Kindergarten last fall and has done so well! She loves, loves, loves to read and by the end of the school year she was able to read small beginner chapter books.  The week that school ended she checked out around 20 books and had read all of them! The transition to Kansas was kind of hard for her because she went from full day Kindergarten to 1/2 day and coming mid-year made making friends even harder.  She had already been asking to play a team sport for a while, so we decided to sign her up for T ball. She loved it and had fun.  Her team, the Purple Dragons, had a good season and learned a lot.  She's already asked to play again next year!  She's also been asking to try other sports and we're thinking about signing her up for soccer in the fall. She's exctied for 1st grade and to be back in school in August.  She's also excited about her first trip away from Mom and Dad! She's going to New Mexico to visit Her Uncle Jared and Aunts Melody and Sarah for a couple of weeks! 
Grant is almost 3! He's a still my sweet little man who lets his sisters kind of walk all over him, but when he gets mad watch out he knows how to fight back when he wants to! Grant loves all the planes that fly over when we're driving around Wichita.  He's mostly potty trained and only wears a diaper at night and potty training him has been easier than his twin.    Grant loves to play in the water, he loved T ball season almost as much as Annalyse and loved to cheer them on.  He's a social butterfly and is the first to interact with folks. 


Lauren is stubborn ( I have no idea where she gets that). She still wears her emotions on her sleeve and bullies her brother a little too much! She and Annalyse share a room  now with bunk beds and she LOVES being with her big sister! They stay up way too late some nights talking, laughing, and reading!  Lauren is more timid and cautious in social settings.  Except if it just involves other kids-then she's in her element and has "friends" instantly.  Grant is a fish...give him a pool or a splash pad and he's in heaven...Lauren not so much.  It takes her time to warm up to the idea of running through the water, but she always makes a friend or two that she'll follow around. 


And...just a couple more for fun. 



I really hope I do better with the blog.

14 October 2014

The Twins are 1!

On October 1st, the twins turned a year old! I can't believe how fast the year went or how much has happened! We chose to do a simple Mickey and Minnie themed party. Someone in our ward taught me some basic cake decorating tips and I also solicited the help from my brother in law, Tom, in helping with creating the smash cakes for the twins. We decided to order cupcakes and I made Ears and Minnie bows for the rest.
 
 
 Before the cake and Ice Cream everyone just kind of hung out, talked and visited for a while. it was pretty low key, but still a lot of fun.



Mommy and Daddy with the Birthday Babies
All 5 of  us!
 I think the whole singing Happy Birthday to them along with the candles was a little overwhelming!


 Funny Face and her cake. She's normally the more reserved baby especially when it comes to trying food, but she loved it! We're working on getting them to use sippy cups so when she took it while eating the cake, we were thrilled :)
 
 Little man eating his cake. We knew that he'd LOVE diving into his cake.  Great Pa Shrack (Harvey) was sitting next to him and Grant decided that he needed to share his cake too. So, Grandpa took a small piece. I think most of us thought it was the sweetest thing!

 Mommy and Daddy had to get in on the Cake action too. Lauren shared a bite with me & I think Daddy may have gotten a sticky kiss from Grant.  Good Times!
 
As soon as the cake was over, we plopped the babies in the tub and washed off all the icing. Boy was it a mess, but surprisingly, it came off pretty easily. Even the dark, black icing. After baths, Big Sis, Annalyse, helped the twins open their gifts. We had such a great time.



 
We lucked out with these little ones. I'm so glad that the Lord has blessed us with them in our family. I'm thankful that they are happy and healthy! Adjusting to life with the twins wasn't easy, but it has been the best year! They bring us so much happiness! Many people have warned us that life with twins doesn't get easier until their about 3, but I kind of like life where it is and wouldn't wish that it go any faster than it already has.

13 October 2014

Road Trip-Part 3 (Socorro, NM and Homeward Bound)

 Upon leaving Riverton, we drove to Socorro, New Mexico, to visit Jared and Melody.  Jared and Melody moved to Socorro in July and we were very excited to see them.  We are so glad that we got the chance to see where they live and include them in our big trip.


 

 
 
Along with seeing Jared and Melody's home, we got a brief tour of the school where Jared is teaching.  The school is comprised of a multi-purpose facility and multiple modular classrooms situated around a playground.  The first picture below is of Jared, Betty Jo, and twinkies outside Jared's modular classroom.  We were also fortunate enough to be able to explore the San Miguel Mission, which is a historic Spanish mission church that dates back to 1615!  The church has recently undergone an extensive historic rehabilitation and was just opened the day before we arrived in Socorro.  As a historic preservationist, it was super fun to see some architecture typically not found in Indiana.   


 
 
We also took in some of New Mexico's natural beauty.  "The Box" is located a few miles outside of town and is a great local attraction.  Annalyse had so much fun exploring and picking up all sorts of rocks.  After pretending to be rugged explorers, we headed back into town and ate lunch at one of the community's Mexican restaurants, Sofia's Kitchen.  The food was very spicy (compared to what we're used to in the Midwest), but absolutely delicious! 

 

 




 After spending a day and a half with Jared and Melody, we left for Colorado Springs.  We were sad to say goodbye, but we look forward to seeing them again when they come to Indiana for Christmas.  We visited Uncle Rex, Aunt Margaret, and Nate.  Kandis, one of my cousins, and her husband also drove down from Denver to see us while we were there.  We took a picture with all of them, but it was accidentally deleted.....sorry Kandis and Ryan:(   After spending a fun night in Colorado Springs, we drove to Kansas and got to see all of our family that live in that state!  We had a fun party at my cousin Miriam's home.  I should have taken more pictures of all the family together, but I was a negligent photographer that night. 




 
We are so grateful that we were able to take this trip and see so many members of our family that live across our beautiful nation.  Thanks to all of those that provided us with a place to sleep, eat, and make many precious memories!  It was wonderful to get away, but it was also good to come home.   We loved our trip and look forward to many future road trips as our kids get older.