Tuesday, August 23, 2016

July 2016

 7/1 - last day of Josiah's golf lessons.  He did a great job!
Also on this day we lost one of our new Red Poll heifers and her calf.  This story line is becoming too familiar.  Ugh.  She was in labor the night before and was having some trouble but it was storming and she wasn't cooperating with the help Jason was trying to give.  On this morning, she was still alive but at the same spot in her laboring.  Not a good sign.  We called the vet but he couldn't come out and was thinking she was probably septic at that point anyway.  So she ended up not making it.  Another rough farm day.  After this happened, Jason started seriously thinking about selling the breeding stock and just getting steers.  We'll keep you posted on what we decide.

7/2 - Levi's dinosaur birthday party!  We had 2 of Levi's friends and their families, Mi Mi, Paw Paw & Aunt April over. We grilled burgers and had dino shaped chicken nuggets for dinner.  That's a doughnut cake with red and orange icing to look like a volcano erupting (but I'm sure you already knew that from my fabulous creativity *insert sarcasm here*).

The donuts are from a local place called Hurts Donuts.  Levi picked cotton candy flavor.  So yeah, just a little bit of sugar.
Then we walked outside to feed the calves.
On our way in, we noticed that the porch birds were leaving their nest!  They were trying to fly but could only flutter down.  Jason tried putting this little guy back in the nest a couple of times so he wouldn't get eaten by the cat, but he just kept getting out.  Eventually all of the porch birds perished.  Sorry feathered friends.
Opening gifts.  Thank you friends & family!

And of course wearing one of his gifts right away.
 7/3 - One of the gifts he got was a game called Pie in the Face.  Like Russian roulette with pie.  We had a great time playing!

 7/6 - Levi's 5th birthday!  Our tradition of breakfast in bed continues.  Notice he's still wearing the batman cape.
What better thing to find on your birthday than tiny green frogs for you to torture play with?!

We let him open his gifts from us on his real birthday.
 7/8 - fourth calf of the season (and so thankful this heifer didn't have any trouble calving)!
7/9 - I did a superhero race with my friend Brandy - it was really fun!
7/11-7/22 - the boys did a Drury University-sponsored summer camp/school.  Levi was in Country Kitchen the first week (cooking food from different countries) and Polar Bears the next week.  Josiah's class was called Toy Box Physics.  They both had a great time.

7/17 - we got a bunk bed for the kids!  So far they love sharing a room.
7/18 - After summer school we went to Roaring River with Jason's Aunt and her grandson Isaiah.  The boys had a blast playing in the river.  They even caught a crawdad!

7/21 - We let the kids skip summer school for the day and Jason took the day off work so that we could hang out with our friends the Hardins!  They came down to Branson for a family reunion weekend and were able to come a day early to hang out with us!  We rode go karts, did laser tag, and tried not to melt in the heat.  :)  It was a really fun day.

 7/23 - the kids were invited to a friend's birthday party where they got to paint a picture!  Levi got bored after the first 2 colors, so I did most of his for him.  They turned out really cute!  Happy birthday Ty!

 7/26 - I took the kids to a ninja class (think American Ninja Warrior) at a local gymnastics place.  Two of their friends also did the class with them.  Here's Levi doing part of an obstacle course.
Handstand (with some help)
They played a game where they had to try to knock the other person off the balance beam.  It was funny to watch.
Brothers.  What you can't see in the pic is that Levi is holding onto the instructor for balance.  :)
They also did some trampoline work, bars (see the pic), floor work, foam pit, rings, etc.  It was 2 nonstop hours of fun!

7/28 - Josiah's good friend Jack (who moved to Florida last year) came to visit!  They got to see each other twice this summer.  And I got to see his mom, my good friend Melissa!  We played at our house for a while, went to the pool and park where we met up with some other friends, and then that evening just the moms went to our church's moms group.  It was such a great day catching up!

7/29 - Our friend Rebekah from church.  It was her birthday so we dropped by to see her.  A couple of friends and I have been helping her with some cleaning at her house.  She does so much for our kiddos at church and we really appreciate her!
 My parents came that afternoon and brought their 4 wheeler which we bought from them!  Jason is so happy to have this.  It's a huge help and time saver, especially when the cows get out.  And of course the kids enjoy taking rides!  They've been much more eager to help with farm chores lately.  :)
7/30 - my parents took the kids to their house for a few days.  Thanks Mom & Dad!
That night we went to Jason's 20th high school reunion.  One of his classmates owns a really nice restaurant in Springfield (one of our favs) so that's where the reunion was.  The food was amazing!
 This is Jason's best friend from high school (and best man at our wedding).  We had fun hanging out with him and his wife.
AND they had karaoke!  I sang Bust a Move with these guys.  We rocked it.  :)
 Viking pride.
Also this month...Jason started talking to a guy in Nebraska who was interested in buying our red poll cattle.  He was ready to be done with calving and all the risks involved.  More to come on this!

Wednesday, August 17, 2016

June 2016

 6/3 - I took the boys to a library sponsored steam engine event.  We got to ride on a steam engine tractor - they are pretty loud!  The one pictured below is about 100 years old.

6/7 - took the boys to the nature center to do some hiking.

6/8 - some birds built a nest on our porch and laid some eggs before we had a chance to remove the nest.  Josiah heard us talking about needing to get the nest down, so he thought he'd be helpful by putting rocks in it.  Oops.  Broke at least 2 of the eggs.  More on the porch birds later.

6/9 - Levi had a weird viral rash (according to the nurse practitioner we saw) so we stayed home for a couple of days.  Thankfully it cleared up on its own after lots of peeling skin.  So strange!

6/11 - We went to Jason's parent's house to meet baby Austen who came up from Texas to see everyone.  She's our oldest nephew's baby girl and she's adorable!
6/12 - We took the kids out with us for dinner and ice cream on our 12th anniversary!
 6/14 - The porch eggs hatched!  They are pretty ugly at this stage.
Also on this day we went to a library event where Josiah got to dissect an owl pellet (which is basically owl throw up).  They found bird bones in their pellet!  This was part of a series of events at the library called STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering And Math) and we did several of them over the summer.

That night we had cub scouts and Josiah "graduated" to the bear level - last year he was a wolf.  Good job, Josiah!

6/17 - We went to a library event at the nature center (can you tell we LOVE the library?) with some friends that we reconnected with this summer.  The kids got to touch a snake, make camouflage masks, and play several games guessing scents and animal skins.  They had a great time!

That afternoon we went to Branson with my parents for a couple of days of swimming and boating fun.  Thanks mom & dad!

 6/19 - Happy Father's day, Jason!

6/20 - The porch birds are getting a little cuter!  Still no open eyes but they are definitely ready to eat.
 6/21 - We started 2 weeks of craziness.  Josiah had 8 am golf lessons Tue-Fri for these 2 weeks, the boys both had swim lessons Tue-Thu at 11:15, plus other various events in the afternoons.  Some days we were in Springfield from 8 am (we left our house at 7:30 am) until 4 pm.  And the 2nd week we had VBS every evening.  They were worn out by the end of the 2 weeks (so was I!).

We had time to kill between events, and this was one of their favorites - tree climbing.  This is at a park where we ate a picnic lunch a couple of the days.

 6/22 - we went on an adventure with Ben and Kharis, our friends we did swim lessons with.  We played in the fountains and had a picnic lunch.  The kids also enjoyed climbing around on the giant cement blocks (which gave me a little anxiety).

 Also on 6/22 we helped the kids paint some paving stones which will be placed in a local garden.
This is an original design by Levi (but I added to it and painted most of it for him).
 6/24 - a pic from golf lessons.  He did a really good job!
 6/25 - The kids did a polar bear race - it was a super hot day and the Springfield parks board puts on a snow event where they make big piles of snow for the kids to play in and cool off.  So the race was through that park and over mounds of snow, and then they ended in the Springfield Cardinals stadium.  It was a cool event, but the kids were super hot and when I took Levi's picture mid-race he told me "I'm done with this, mom" - but I encouraged him to finish and he did!

 Also on 6/25 we got 2 bottle calves!  They are really cute.  The one Levi is feeding is named Bat Calf (there's a mark on his forehead that looks like the Batman symbol), and the one Josiah is feeding is named Fawn because he looks like a baby deer.  These little guys are harder to feed than you'd think.  They buck their heads up trying to get the milk faster, but the boys are doing a good job taking care of them (with a lot of help from their daddy).  We fed these calves twice a day for about 2 months.

6/28 - playing at the park next to the pool (waiting for swim lessons to start).

And a couple of cute pics from week 2 of swim lessons.
Josiah's class was working on diving.  He didn't quite get it, but I'm sure he will next time!

6/30 - Another post-swimming adventure with Ben & Kharis!  This time we went to Bass Pro Shops where they played around and even found a mystery to solve.

A pic from VBS - Levi's class said their bible verse on the stage.  They did such a great job!  I was teaching the pre-K class (3 and 4 year olds) while my kids were in their classes.  I know God was working in all the kids' lives!
June was a whirlwind, but really fun!