Thursday, July 24, 2014

Go Lego Club!

Despite the grumpy face from Mr. Cantankerous, the kids have been in love with Legos lately. Like I might as well just get rid of every other toy because it's the only thing they play with. Ooooh, imagine how clean my house could be if I actually did that? A girl can dream. Anyway, the kids were pretty pumped when I told them the library had started a Lego club. I think Dude was refusing to smile here merely because I was trying to take his picture. Or because he was supposed to play with the big Legos like a little kid.
 G had no issue with it and went straight to work building the biggest tower ever.
 Fortunately he got over it and built one of his monsters:
 The girls were slightly intimidated at first, sitting at a large table full of Lego experts, aka. pre-teen boys. They clearly understood that there was a whole world that they knew very little about. That meant unfamiliar vocab, fancy trick pieces, and the ability to build without instructions. I was proud of how they just did their best without embarrassment.
 And then to top it off, J won the door-prize and the much coveted and most recently released Chima Lego set (guarantee she did not even know that name before today)! She may have enjoyed the envying attentions from that previously mentioned more experienced crowd a little bit. Needless to say they can't wait to come again!

Thursday, July 17, 2014

Down at the Waterfront

Could Portland be any more beautiful??? Nope, I don't think so. At least not on a perfect summer day! This guy was not too certain about this crazy fountain thing:
But then we loaded an even crazier number of people on these bicycle/clown car things and did our very best to mow down pedestrians. I mean avoid them. What did I say? However, if anything so unfortunate as that were to have actually happened, it would've been all them. I cannot tell you how many pedestrians were just begging for it, aka. refusing to get out of our way while they took their pretty time despite plenty of bell-ringing. 
They weren't the only hazard. We also rode across a high, narrow bridge (which might scare some people), and struggled to make it up inclines that were much harder than they first appeared and down inclines that threatened to make us lose control (while someone was holding a baby)! Oh and then we decided to do part of the loop again! Good times. No really. It was! And quite the workout I tell you what.
We look about as good as the view :) Sisters are the best!
Nanas are too!
 Eventually he got more okay with the fountains. 
 Naturally M was all about it! I so love her fun-loving, no-fear nature!
 J is more of a bathing beauty:
 Great camera work daddy!
 When we got back to the starting point to turn in our vehicles, the fountain was back to this exciting formation. M was the only one brave enough to venture into the center. I had to basically drag dude in with me for a picture! What an awesome day.

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

George Rogers Park

I wouldn't accurately be describing our trip without pictures from the river. We spent a lot of time there. And yet, I think Bopa thought we weren't there nearly enough :) Even Grandma and Grandpa were able to find a prime spot in the shade and join in the fun!
 Siblings. I look like such a dork. And I'm taller than my sister so I'm not sure what happened...
 Aunt Ninnie loves our kids so much. I keep telling her she can borrow G and send her back when she's potty trained. If only she lived closer.
 G wasn't too sure about this arrangement. Man, that thing brings back memories.
 LOVE how this girl always crosses her legs when she lays down. My dainty little lady. Ha!
 And this just looks "oh so sweet." What was actually happening was she was terrified and clinging to me for dear life. But it looks like she's just being all lovey. I'll take it.
 No fear from these girls. They are part fish. Or at least they wish they were. Isn't the idea of being a mermaid appealing to every girl at some age?

 Do you wanna build a sandcastle? Well, it's tricky with G around. She's not so much the building-up type. Demolition is more her style.
Grammy and Papa joined us too for a picnic in the park. Baby L looks so dang cute talking with her Grammy!
Ahhh...good times.

Monday, July 14, 2014

Portland Zoo

 We always have to make a trek to the Portland Zoo when we're in town! It's just too fun to miss. I still would like to know why all the paths are paved in that crazy hot black asphalt...and why there is an alligator. I hate alligators. Also, why do penguins smell so badly? Other than that, we enjoyed watching the bird show, seeing the not-so-baby baby elephant, getting distressed over the not-so-recent death of the ancient zebra, walking 10 miles to see every other animal that walks the planet and thus is in the zoo, and eating frozen lemonades. Those things are awesome.
 Oh, and last time we were here I looked like this:
Ah the difference 7 months can make. I prefer now.

Sunday, July 13, 2014

A perfect Sunday

We thought it would be the perfect time for Little Lu to be blessed when we were in Oregon surrounded by so much family! She was a doll as always, and it was a great experience.
 Afterwards we were able to have dinner with cousins, aunts, uncles, grandparents, and great-grandparents alike and then walk over to the beautiful Portland temple. Man, we miss being able to do that. We are so fortunate to have a temple as near as we do in North Dakota, but it can't compare to basically living in the shadows of the spires. Sure made for a beautiful Sabbath.

Saturday, July 12, 2014

60th Anniversary party

So the main reason we made the trek to Oregon when we did was to celebrate my Grandma and Grandpa Smith's 60th Anniversary. A really impressive number of their descendants were able to gather from all over the states so it was a great reunion! Cousins we hadn't seen in years with all sorts of mini cousins we'd never met before. It was a little bit hotter than comfortable, but otherwise, the day was awesome! 
Ahhhh. Cousin kisses!
 For some reason, everyone kept saying this guy needed a haircut. Still not sure why.
 Way to go Spider-Woman!
 And look! Even mommy can climb too. Although admittedly, some of those spots don't seem to be made for humans as long as she is!
 We love Great-Grandma and Great-Grandpa, King and Queen of the Ball!
We sure miss them and look back fondly on when we could jump in the car and be there to visit them five minutes later. Knowing it's not quite that easy anymore, Little Lu made friends with everybody she met, bestowing smiles graciously wherever she went. She's such a charmer.
Happy Anniversary! We love you guys!!

Friday, July 11, 2014

Happy 7/11 to me!

What a great day - free Slurpees! It's like 7-11 wants everyone to celebrate me! Was nice to be in a state that actually has a 7-11 so we could enjoy the yummy treat! We might have gone to more than one that day. How could we not have?!
 And being a beautiful, hot, summer day, we also went to have some water fun. The parks back home are just so dang gorgeous. And we had tons of fun!! Glad that Bopa, Ninnie, Grammy and Papa, and the Tibbets all came along!
 Timid no longer, here comes Super WaterMan!
 Cousins!! Too bad South Korea was so dang far away. These two would love to hang out more often. Texas is a little bit closer, right?
 Bopa was a major trooper and played this fun "game" for an impressive amount of time. I think they poured a whole pool's worth on top of their "sleeping" heads. Way to take it for the team Bopa (and Kendyl).

Thursday, July 10, 2014

On to the next trip!

So after all that crazy excitement, Nana and Bopa loaded the older three in our van and brought them home to Oregon, which meant the younger two had an unprecedented amount of our attention! They loved it (and so did we honestly)! 
 Turns out that G isn't such a naughty little squirt when she has mom's undivided attention! Honestly, I don't think she got into any of her usual type of mischief. Not even once! Even when she's trying to be helpful though, Baby L is all, "Uh mom...are you sure about this?"
 But before we knew it, it was time for us to fly out to reunite with the rest of our crazy clan. Wouldn't want things to be too quiet for too long I guess. The plane ride went surprisingly, miraculously, and totally unexpectedly rather well. 
 Of course a few outfit changes were necessary, but that's just an occupational hazard, right? Still smiling though!
 And then, even better, sleeping! We could not believe it but BOTH of them fell asleep. At the same time even! We had to document it to prove it really happened. 
 Gotta say, planes are cool. Even Montana doesn't seem like such a long state when you travel by air (which is saying A LOT)!!