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Saturday, September 18, 2010

Craft Time

I had to patch up my husband's favorite pair of jeans, so I set the children down to do a craft. I was having a hard time finding something for them to do that didn't require a lot of my help. So, I scoped out our recycle bin, and found a couple of square containers...perfect!

I grabbed some 2 sided mounting tape (didn't want them to have glue when I couldn't be right there overseeing!) and the box of popsicle sticks. They happily set to work making their boxes.

When they were finished putting the on popsicle sticks, I took the boxes out to the garage and spray painted them.

When the spray paint was dry, I let them decorate the boxes with stickers. They had a blast. Jayna uses her little box to hold crayons and pencils, Xander uses his to hold his sunglasses.

Oh, and my little "craft" turned out ok too! Jason was very pleased that he could wear his favorite jeans once again.

Thursday, September 16, 2010

"Bunch of Okies"

We had such a fun trip to Oklahoma to visit my dad and great aunt/great uncle. It's so beautiful there, and so different! The girls and I took a plane trip to Oklahoma City Thursday afternoon, and came back Monday afternoon. It was a short but sweet vacation!

The girls...getting ready to take off!!

Being out in the middle of nowhere (my aunt and uncle live on about 150 acres, give or take) was so refreshing, and I felt just a tad envious. But I quickly realized (ok, it took me a day or two after I got back), that being here in Arizona with family is a great life, too. Still, the ranch life tugs at my heart. Maybe someday we will be able to have some land, even if it's here in the Sunny State. Here are some pics that me and Jayna took of our time in Ada, Oklahoma.

Jayna loved riding this was my great uncle's brother's- over 50 years old! It still makes little kids smile!

The girls loved the cows (my aunt and uncle run a cow ranch). These calves just got weaned and were sent to the City on Sunday.

The next toy that they loved was the "Mule". We rode it around the country, and stopped at a pond or two to do some fishin' (Jayna had never caught a fish before this trip, and now she has caught 5!). Mama loved the Mule because it put grumpy babies to sleep!

Fishin' with Grandpa, and her first fish! (left) Very exciting evening.

"I got a FISH!!!!!!"

The sunsets were very beautiful! I just loved the scenery all together! The GREEN!! Wow, what a change from Phoenix! It was so relaxing and wholesome feeling!


On Saturday, we headed straight to the Amish festival of Ada! First, we watched them make the ice cream.........then, we ate the yummy goodness!!

Uh-Oh....Jayna found her new wish for her Santa list. these ponies were way too cute!

My Aunt Lois and Dad leading the way.

The Amish Festival was a neat site, but it was a little too hot and sunny to stay too long.

Sunday morning, we found this little creature in the middle of the road. We took him home, and let him go in my Dad's pond. Dad called me yesterday to say he's still around!

Sittin' on the front porch...we did a lot of was nice!

Sonja and me being silly, waiting for Grandpa and Jayna to get done fishing.

All in all, it was an amazing trip, but of course it is so good to be back home with Jason and Xander. I missed them!

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Labor Day and Chores (Ironic)

We had a relaxing Labor Day at home with family. Myah, my niece, came over to visit. We painted nails. It's so fun having girly time! Once it got a little cooler (haha, ya right), we went next door to the park. Myah played football with Uncle Jason and me. She is such a sweet girl! We love her! The rest of the evening we enjoyed watching the 4 kids playing together..running around the house chasing eachother, laughing and screaming so loud we couldn't even think! I LOVE evenings like this.
Before we went to bed on our day off of Labor, we developed a chore chart for Jayna and Xander. They have done very well so far. They earn a small allowance, and we are already teaching them to save a percentage of their money as well as tithe. They take pride in their accomplishments, and drag Daddy up to see their clean rooms and bathroom.

Monday, September 6, 2010

Labor Day Vacation.


We headed up north to our hometown of Payson, AZ this weekend. The kids packed up their little backpacks and we ventured out on our 3 day vacation. After packing up the truck, we had to do some Ritter Boys' work on our way out of town. By the time we were finished with that, the kids were already sick of driving, and we had 2 hours to Payson! So, we stopped at a Mcdonald's in Scottsale. The kids loved the air hockey table! After stretching their legs and hitting around the puck, we continued on.

Saturday, we headed to Woods Canyon Lake. It felt so good to get out of civilization and just see TREES and mountains! First we stopped on the side of the road to check out the awesome views. Xander was a little afraid of the "cliffs" at first, but he stayed close to Mommy because he knew I would "keep him safe". Jayna was as brave as ever jumping from rock to rock, which made Mommy nervous.

It was so awesome seeing the amazing view. I always feel closest to God and am reminded of all His Glory when I am surrounded by nature. It is truly his masterpiece. No matter how many times I have been here, the view just takes me aback. The children seemed to feel the same way. It is just such a gorgeous site.

When we made it to the lake, we quickly realized that everyone else in Arizona had the great idea of taking their kids fishing. Our kids already had their little rods in hand, and were so ecstatic to go fishing, so we knew we had to give them the opportunity. After hiking around for a while trying to find a spot, and idea dawned on us. What's a great way to get away from a crowded shore at the lake? Rent a boat!! So off we went! What a wonderful surprise for the kids! They were so extremely excited to climb aboard the boat! We took off and found a secluded spot where we could relax, and let the kids fish for the very first time.

They had so much fun, even though they didn't catch a fish.

Saturday night, we took a "date night" and went to hang out with some great friends. Our niece Kayla came to stay at the house while the kids slept. It was so much fun!

Sunday morning we relaxed around the house (we borrowed my mom's place while she was out of town), and then headed to Green Valley Park. It was a beautiful day to go walking/biking!

Our little vacation came to an end, but we still have today (Labor Day) to relax, get little things around the house done, and just be a family. Then come tomorrow the girls and I need to pack and prepare for our venture to Oklahoma! Oh, vacation time!! It is just so exciting and precious!!

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Jayna's First Blog

Jayna and I are sitting down to compose our first blog together. Jayna is very excited!

Today, we played some games. First, we played Jr. Boggle, where Jayna learned how to spell some 3 letter words.

Jayna: "it was fun. I learned a lot about spelling."

Next, we played some jr. Monopoly (both these Jr games were given to us by my wonderful mother-in-law). Jayna did very well counting her money and buying her booths. She was dominating the game, really.

Jayna: "I didn't run outta money!"
Xander had a lot of fun at first, but got tired of having to only go as many spaces as the die rolled, so he began just driving his car around to wherever he wanted to go. He soon ran out of money with his squandering and left the game shortly after haha!

Playing games with the kids is such a great way to teach them. I prefer these creative ways to learn as opposed to just sitting down with worksheets. Games like Monopoly leave opportunities to not only teach rules and strategy in playing, but also teach money management, counting, adding, etc! And most importantly, of course, is spending quality time together.