Saturday, November 30, 2013

Christopher's FUN party!

Jesse and Diana threw a 10th birthday celebration for Christopher over at Jester's Court (Walker) this evening. Four of Chris's classmates came, as well as many family and friends. We had so much FUN!
Christopher is sitting in the inflatable Jester's chair in the GREEN party room where the cake and presents were set up. I love the look on his face!
This is a few of the kiddos being
WILD & CRAZY at the party ...
 Baby Kaitlynn joined in on the fun ... she's getting a little more used to me (whew!) but still doesn't know me very well. She's walking very fast now, although she walks as much on her KNEES (fast!) as she does on her feet! I've never seen a child do this before!
Matthew absolutely loves indoor playgrounds like this ~ he just went crazy with the fun! 

 Chris received a lot of nice presents ... I couldn't believe how MANY footballs he got!
These are the two Star Wars LEGO sets
from Me! 
 Emma loves to climb and so she was right at home here ... she is quite a monkey!

 Dylan, Kelly, baby Brendan and Grandpa Jim came to the party too ... not all of them are pictured, but I did want to note it here in the narrative anyway ...

Baby B totally contented to hang out with
his sweet mama ...
Brendan was not too crazy about this chair ...
to keep it inflated, it had a rather LOUD
fan or something blowing into it ...

Jesse and Kaity-girl having a hug
 This photo of Matthew and Kaity hugging is the sweetest picture I took all night ... I love it.
 Baby Brendan enjoyed himself hugely at the party ... but he was very sleepy and a little tuckered out tonight!
 Matthew felt it was his DUTY to get me on every single inflatable inside Jester's Court. We had races (!) ... which I naturally LOST ... we climbed and slid and cracked up together!
Emma and Christopher challenged me to many races down the slides and had me crawling around in spaces that I'm not sure were appropriate for a grandma ... but the laughter and the memories we made together sure were precious tonight!

Christopher is TEN!

It was Chris's 10th birthday yesterday. It's hard to sum Chris up in just a few words ... because he's a complicated kiddo!
He can be very serious (as above) and thoughtful ... pensive at times too. I like this picture of him very much. 

Chris is very athletic. He's a fast runner, he is quite coordinated, he has a great arm for football, he's quite good at basketball ... he just enjoys being PHYSICAL! 
Chris says he would very much like to be a professional football player someday. I told him that not many people get to do that actually, but he says he is going to try for it anway! 
Chris is very gentle with animals, as well as with his baby sister Kaity ... he's not so gentle with Matthew or Emma (!!), but they are bigger and more his age. He is very smart, quick to catch on to new concepts, a good reader, and fun to be with. I love being his grandma.

More than anything, Christopher, I pray that you will know the great and awesome God who made you for a purpose ... who planned out your days, who constantly watches over you, the One who loves you with a never-ending love. I want you to know and love Him and be everything He wants you to be! I won't stop praying this for you, dear grandson, because I love you very much. HAPPY BIRTHDAY!

Thursday, November 28, 2013

A very HAPPY Thanksgiving ...

This is the first Thanksgiving since 2006 that I've been able to celebrate with Jesse and his family, so to say that I had a HAPPY day is quite an understatement. I was SO thrilled! We decided on a potluck dinner to be held at Dylan and Kelly's house. I brought the turkey, which turned out really moist and delicious ~ I carved it and put it in my beautiful new crock pot so that it would be hot and juicy for our dinner. 
Little Fellow was all set to party ... 
The cousins had a lot of fun together today. Brendan enjoys having company, and these kids play so well together. 

Brendan and Dylan ...
I love these guys so much!
 A very nice picture of Kaity-girl and her folks!
You are a Cutie, Kaity!

 Christopher is unbelievably good with babies ... he's used to playing with Kaitlynn. Brendan is almost 5 months older than Kaity, but she is at least four inches taller than him. He has her outweighed, though, by more than 10 pounds.
Dylan James ... I love seeing you this happy. This is Dylan and Kelly's first Thanksgiving in their own home. 
Part of the feast ... most of it was still in the kitchen
when I took this picture ...
Jesse and his dad ...

Kelly and Diana ... two daughters-in-law, very short girls, who married two very TALL sons of mine!  
Emma and Kaity

By the time we began taking some family pictures, everyone was too stuffed with turkey and too tuckered out to smile very much. My pictures of the whole family are not worth keeping ... they are actually terrible of everyone! So I did some cropping and salvaged these of the kiddos ... And Shane was with us too, but he is not in any of these pictures because that's what he prefers ~ but it sure was nice to have everyone together today.

 See what I mean about the height difference in these couples? I bet there is 16 inches between Jesse and Diana, and probably 14 between Dylan and Kelly!
Me and my sweet Emma Joy. My heart was happy to be with family today ... so thankful!

Sunday, November 24, 2013

The other stuff we did this weekend ...

We read a lot of books this weekend! I had checked out an interesting children's story book from our church library. I returned the book this morning, so I can't recall the title! What was neat about it was that these three kiddos wanted to read it TO me. It was illustrated really simply, and it was in kind of an easy-read format, dealing with seven parables that Jesus taught to his friends. I was encouraged by how well the children were reading. We went through each parable and had a wonderful time discussing each of them!
We watched a more recent version of "Lassie" for our bedtime movie. The kids and I really loved the story. There was a lot of relationship stuff going on and family conflict that had a happy ending! These pictures just show the kids reading other books while I was getting ready for bed before we turned on our movie.

Matthew has a very active imagination.
Here he is reading to his favorite
stuffed animals ... so sweet.

 It seems hard to believe, but all three children sleep in sleeping bags on the floor in the main room here. I sleep with them, but on the couch. They like me to be with them and I enjoy it too. After our movie is over, we turn on our favorite Michael Card CD and listen as he sings lullabies. I rub each child's back and face for TWO songs each, and then I get to upload my pictures from the day and edit them while the children finally go to sleep (which is nearly midnight each Friday night!).

It was COLD and somewhat snowy Saturday morning and I was wondering if we would be able to do our afternoon adventure ... I was so hoping to take the kiddos to another NEW place to hike.
We almost chickened out because of the cold, but finally we decided to take a BRIEF adventure over to Seidman Park (Ada). I had heard that it was beautiful and a great place to hike. We were not disappointed. 
I need to figure out what this creek is called ... isn't it beautiful? 

This was just a brief exposure to this great park. It was TOO cold to stay out very long. The wind was very blustery too! 

I love to watch how the children interact with nature ... especially streams ... they get as close as possible and just HAVE to make contact with that water! I totally "get" that! 

We will surely make many return visits to this beautiful place. We hardly even began to hike here. But we have a nice map for the future, and hopefully the next time we come it won't be so windy! 
This is Kaity-girl. I got to see her for a little while once I dropped the other children back home. Isn't she a sweetie? She is going to be tall, like her sister. She doesn't know me very well, but I can tell that she is going to warm up just fine and that we will have a lot of fun together.