2019 chapter 34

We went to an arboretum - every third Monday is free, so we went the last free one of the summer, so dumb! I was thinking, "why don't we do this in September when all the big kids are back in school?" Then it hit me that Wade will be one of the big kids going to school and wouldn't be able to come with. 

The top picture is what we named the "stick castle." You could walk through it, very cool. Also, lost my kids immediately (and the one extra kid we brought with - I'm to a stage that I can bring extra kids with me!). Below: told them they shouldn't climb, after I snapped a pic. Also, there was no sign saying no climbing, so I let them. Apparently the signs everywhere in public places were made for me/mom's that are picture happy.

My kids are definitely garden kids. They kept telling their friends to not pick flowers, and to be gentle. Wade found a frog and when he put it back he told all the kids to not bother it cause he was probably scared (of course after he had had a turn). 

And Jac fell in: 

Blake latched onto my friend Liz. Liz has four kids (the youngest is Wade's age) and she was a good sport and held her hand the whole time. Liz is also the primary chorister and Blake just loves her, but I was still surprised at how much she wanted to be with her. I overheard on conversation Liz had with both my girls: 
Liz: "What's your favorite flower?"
Jac: "I like pink flowers!"
Blake: "I like purple!"
For my kids being "plant experts," they weren't very specific, but they do know what they like.   

The whole crew! I was climbing somewhere where there was a "no climbing" sign, and then I slipped on a rock right after this. I deserved it. 

And this picture needs to be included because Wade is cute, but also because right after this Grant (my extra kid for the day and little boy in the orange shirt) fell in. It wasn't deep, he just lost his balance and started crying. I grabbed him and we sat on a bench and talked about how he was just scared and then he told me he thought the fish wanted to eat him (koi do have big mouths). He calmed down fast, but it felt good to have someone else's kid trust you enough that you can comfort them - that's wonderful. And, I couldn't stop laughing. Kept it together, he didn't know, but it was so good when he was ready to laugh about it so I could let it out too. 

On the way home Wade and Grant were teasing Jac and I told them to be nice so they don't hurt someone's feelings. Then Blake said (under her breath), "I want Grant to hurt my feelings." And the rest of the way home:  

Wade told Bryan, "I'm smarter than you cause I know how to catch butterflies and you don't. Bryan told him he could and the conversation escalated to Bryan saying, "I can catch one million butterflies!" and Wade responded, "I can catch one hundred!" and then Bryan, "I can catch all the butterflies in the world!" Then Blake (she's smart) demanded to see Daddy catch one. The rest of the night was spent by the kids discussing holes in Bryan's plan.  

Daddy took us to the driving range! But, it was closed, so we just putted. 

Well, first we thought Wade could still hit, but then he hit it so far we decided to just putt. 

Jac was obviously into it. 

Jac: Unicorns don't say neigh, neigh! They say magic, magic!

This mythical locknest sand dress up monster appeared at my back door and requested admittance. 

Sunday we had 50 people at our house for a rib fest! Everyone brought a rack of ribs and a side. It was so fun and I loved that I had the space for it. I put out blankets for the kids to eat on and the girls loved it and were sure it was a flat jungle gym I set up for them. And look how cute they are!! I also matched them for church in black and leopard, definitely should have taken a picture. Cause I haven't taken enough this week.  

The set up (I scored a second table + 2 chairs + bench that I painted): 

And the slide was a HIT (thanks dad!): 

Needed soooo much paint for the table. Had to get more. Twice. Realized in the store that I still had my paint apron on. It was the third errand I made. 

After the rib fest we had our first sunflower bloom. Wade woke me up to tell me the news.

Jac's gotten really into singing along with songs and loves when ones come on the radio that she knows. One came on this week that was a remix and there was a rap part and Jac said, "Whoa! They go way too fast for me to sing along!" 

Last week I had so many pics of the girls sleeping, realized I needed to capture a few of the Wade. 

Me: Someone go see what Blake's doing.
Wade: Jac, you do it, she's your twin. 

Girls helping me clean. I was done with that window. But, I haven't cleaned them in...years, so they still turned out better than when I started. 

Wade: I made up a new joke. What is an eyeballs favorite soup? (no answer, just everyone giggling over the tag line). What's a juices favorite food? (again, no answer). 

I found this HUGE (7ft 7in x 3ft 1 in) mirror for FREE on facebook. Need to put some trim on it so I can put it on my wall. Do you remember that I sold my last mirror so I could buy an IKEA one I really wanted, but then I leaned on the wall to think about how I wanted it, then 4 hours later it fell and broke and I was so sad that Bryan had to clean it up while I wallowed in self-pity. Well, now I have something even better! It was in my car NOT safe, it would have decapitated me if I got in a fender bender, thrifting is how I live on the edge. 

Bryan got his hair cut and Blake kept telling him he looked like a new boy. When he went to work she kept telling me that daddy got his hair cut and was a new daddy. 

We set a new record today and spent 5 hours at the beach! A lot of friends came and everyone build castles/mounds, buried feet in the sand, swam, caught fish, ate, played on the playground, gathered acorns. It was the fullest day. Some of the 12/13 year olds played with my kids and my kiddos loved it (I think the older kids did too). 

Wade's fish bucket. I think the just put it back. 

More fishing. 

I went canoeing down the St. Croix this weekend! It was a seven mile trip and so fun and relaxed. We took 14 ladies in 6 canoes. Loved being out on the water. I was very disappointed in who packed my lunch and snacks (it was me), apparently they thought I would love carrots and apples instead of chips and pop. On the way home we stopped at a gas station and I've never been so excited about crappy gas station food (not cause I was hungry, just wanted all the bad snacks). We also saw 10 eagles! They actually turned out to be huge hawks, but they were still breath taking. And later we did see one eagle. 

We've been reading scriptures with our kids this year. We've been doing really well, probably 6 out of 7 nights a week, but it's just been from a little kid version of the New Testament (they look kinda like comics). This week we started doing nightly readings from the Primary Come Follow Me manual and it has been amazing. We're in 1 Corinthians and have talked about the Holy Ghost and learned a new song about it and it's what everyone has wanted sung to them at bedtime this week. It'd lead to deep questions like "When is the Holy Ghost's birthday." Wade told her we could pray and the Holy Ghost would tell them. Then Jac said, "I think I can hear him in my ears. Just a little bit." So, we don't totally grasp it all, but we're talking about it. Tonight we talked about how Christ needs to be our foundation, and I realized they don't really know what a foundation is, so we got building blocks and made strong and shaky foundations, it was a great activity. I'm really grateful for these manuals and how much we're talking about the gospel.

My father in law just got here and he told me that when Bryan was little they just got done doing a FHE on the Holy Ghost and after there was a knock at the door and Bryan ran to get it. He came back and his parents asked him who was at the door and he said, "No one. It must have been your Holy Ghost friend."

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