Saturday, August 31, 2013

Evan Cutie

Evan eating a chocolate chip cookie.

Evan getting mommy's attention.

Evan doing what he does best: Smiling big!

Evan climbing up the stairs. 
Lincoln going down the stairs. Stop bro!

Evan tormenting Lincoln. Stop bro!

Friday, August 30, 2013

Fun & Games

Chess with daddy!

Swimming with opa & grandma!

Constructing with planks.

Deconstructing with planks.

Playing Snap!

Wearing costumes!

Driving on little bro's head!

Stacking beads!

Thursday, August 29, 2013

Five Viva Facts

Viva had a small strawberry garden this summer which she was responsible for watering. The birds really enjoyed the big red berries. (The strawberries were mighty fine!)

Viva likes to use the markers to create artwork on the white board.

Viva likes to use the bead stacker to make rainbows.

Viva is a great helper with Evan. 
He was unhappy and she was trying to console him.

Viva likes to observe nature, but not worms. She really, really dislikes worms. 
(In fact she's afraid of worms!)

Bubble Wrap

The older children showed Lincoln and Evan how to have a good time with bubble wrap. You have to be old enough to jump well and big enough to pop the bubbles. 

Lincoln recently acquired both of those attributes, so he joined his siblings in popping the bubble wrap. Evan was suitably impressed.

Jake took the fun a little too seriously. When he didn't pop every bubble by random jumping, he used his fist to finish the job. Ouch!

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Family Came; Family Left

Great-grandma returned from Utah August 17th accompanied by my brother Jim. He only stayed two and half days and flew back late on the 19th. My twin Jean and her youngest daughter Sarah (a college sophomore) flew in the next day and stayed almost a week, leaving on the 26th. 

We didn't get much time with Jim because he was out visiting a couple of friends and spent time with our brother Mark. Jean and Sarah were busy, too, but because they were with us for seven days, we saw more of them. 

The children are always excited to have guests in our home. Jake and Bentley took Sarah up to their room to show her all their Lego creations and minifigures. She was trapped quite a while. Lincoln enjoyed hanging out with his Great-aunt Jean and Evan, as always, was friendly to all our guests. We had a good visit with them. 

We didn't get any photos of Jim, Jean or Sarah, so I've no picture proof of their visits. Arg!

Baby Doll

Meet baby doll:

She looks freakishly real, right?!  I picked her up at a garage sale, I believe, many years ago.  Periodically I buy dolls in an attempt to help Genevieve do little girl things.  She dresses them up and carries them around once in a while but she's not really into dolls.  Probably because she doesn't have any other little girls to play with?

Anyway.  Baby doll, above, is the favored doll around here.  She's about the size of a newborn and she has some of Viva's old preemie outfits from when she was a baby!  Lincoln really likes her, too.  We've had more than one guest to the house do a double take, thinking we're throwing an actual baby around when Lincoln tosses her or carries her by one arm!

Good times.

"I Could Walk...

if I wanted to." Yes, Evan has shown us that he has the skills to walk, but he just doesn't want to quite yet. Over a week ago Kara and I convinced him to take a few steps. We bribed him with the household phone. It's not a cell phone. The buttons are much more fun to press on old style phones and random button pushing produces lots of odd noises. Evan will do almost anything to get his hands on that phone and Kara and I took advantage of his fascination with it. For a few days he would walk between us to get that phone, but now he's over it. He's not willing to humor us. We will just have to humor him and wait until he decides walking is what he wants to do


Tuesday, August 27, 2013

"My Train Track MORE"

The first couple of weeks after I allowed Lincoln to build train tracks on his own were, quite frankly, rough for me. Every time I came into my bedroom a new train layout was sprawled across the carpet. I'd clean it up, he'd return and start all over. He never got discouraged. Bummer. Sometimes his siblings helped him build, but more often it was just him building.

Karate Cuties

I'm not completely sure my boys would like the word cuties stuck together with the word karate, but what they don't know... :)

Cute, cute, cute.  Times three.  (Even if they do need hair cuts... )  Karate is going well, although it is only week two.  Now I just need to hem and get the patch on Viva's gi!

Monday, August 26, 2013


There is a small bowling alley next to the skating rink the trio and I skate at. We walk by it almost every time we visit the rink, so months ago the children started asking me when I would take them bowling. (They've bowled there once before.) I put them off again and again, but finally I had to make good on my promise to take them "sometime".

On Saturday we went with opa. He didn't bowl with us, but he came along. We rented one lane for one hour. I thought this would be the best deal moneywise because the bowling attendant told me that a group of four could easily bowl two or even three games in a hour. He obviously hasn't observed young bowlers. They are slow to pick up their ball, slow to walk down the 16' runway, and slowest of all is their ball rolling down the 62' 10 3/4" lane. We only finished one game and four frames in an hour. 

It was hard to find a ball light enough for our young ones to bowl with, but eventually we located a 7 pound ball. Viva used an 8 pound ball instead because it was pink. Bentley could put his fingers in the holes and hold on to 7 pound ball long enough to send it down the alley, but Jake and Viva could not. Viva wasn't strong enough to grip the ball when her fingers were in the holes and I was afraid that Jake was going to dislocate his elbow, so I told him to not used the finger holes. They more or less threw the ball on to the lane. Viva's balls were so slow that even when the ball hit the pins perfectly (the strike zone), there was not enough momentum in the ball to knock down very many pins.

We played with gutter rails so instead of going into the gutter if the ball was thrown poorly, it would bounce off the rail and stay in play. This makes the game so much more interesting. Instead of watching gutter ball after gutter ball (boring!), we got to see some very unusual pin falls. 

I started with a strike and maybe got one other, but I didn't achieve a high score even with the gutter rails up. Bentley had two strikes and some spares. Jake got one strike and lots of 8s. Viva didn't usually hit down more than four pins at a time because the ball was just too slow and light weight. (Maybe I should have given her the 20 pound ball? Could she have thrown it?!)

The children greatly enjoyed bowling. As we left Bentley asked if we could come again on Monday. HUH!? It took me six months to make good on my last agreement to take them bowling. I don't want to make a new agreement just yet!

Sunday, August 25, 2013

Big Bro Jake!

Another quality iPhone picture!

Jake is intense, but is a good big brother too.  Sometimes he has a bit TOO much enthusiasm but when he keeps it under control Lincoln and Evan find him quite entertaining.  What lucky little guys to have two great older brothers to watch and follow around!

Jake likes Lincoln, but his real passion is Evan.  He thinks Evan is just the cutest thing ever - I suspect some of that is because he's heard it mentioned that Evan bears more than a passing resemblance to baby Jake, but I could be wrong.  :)  Evan is pretty cute, regardless of whom he does or does not resemble!

Saturday, August 24, 2013

Jake's Train Layout

Jake built this layout and asked me to take photos of it. It's a pretty intricate layout.

Friday, August 23, 2013

Summer School Work

Bentley doing Reflex Math on the computer. He's practicing his math facts. 
The twins also do Reflex Math. 

Jake reading.

Viva reading.

Bentley recording his school work. Bentley likes keeping track of what he does. 
Viva, not so much.

Viva doing handwriting.

Jake doing handwriting.

Viva practicing piano.

The twins would tell you that they do hours and hours of school work every day. It might seem like that because they dawdle a lot, but they have a pretty light load. 

Thursday, August 22, 2013

Art Night!

Our summer art class experience wrapped up with a gallery night!  All of the art from the summer was displayed on walls, and friends and family were invited to come by the *exhibit* and check it out.  It was very nicely put together and fun to see all the projects from the different classes this summer.

Even the teacher had some art out!  She did this gorgeous picture of the temple here, which some of us parents were busy trying to engage her in a bidding war over.  Alas, it is spoken for.  :)

It was a fun class and a great learning opportunity for the kids!


It's been fun to see Jake and Viva doing puzzles together the past month or longer. 

Bentley even pulled a puzzle from the shelf.

I talked the trio into working on a puzzle together. It was 300 piece one that Bentley and I have done before, but his skills are slipping. He said more than once that it was too hard. Nonsense!