To finish off the last two weeks of summer (yes, I’m backed up on documenting here!), the three oldest kids went to volleyball camps.

They loved them and prompted us to talk Elle into trying out for the volleyball team.

And for that we are so grateful.

We also discovered Grace adores volleyball too. Hmmm…maybe we’ll become a volleyball family.

I got to go to the temple at 5:00 am with these beautiful-inside-and-out girls from church.
…And I dragged two of my girls to one of my favorite places:
(excuse the iPhone pictures here…)

The idea was that we would search out our favorite paintings and sit to sketch them together. Our plan was foiled when a museum worker discovered we had paints in our art kit and told us we had to take them back to the car. Dang. But I think those girls still had a good time as I pushed a little more art-love into their hearts.
We had an opening social swim party for the youth in our church.It was “kid-soup.”

We got to spend extra time with cousins we love.
Dave’s parents came to town and hosted a bbq/swim deal.
(Those kids are all looking for the toothpick in the water.)

Lucy has kept occupied with a lot of things as of late.

Play-doh is one of her favorites right now.

…along with pretending paints are “guys” with her sister:

…and making myriads of butterflies (we went through a serious butterfly phase).
(her “hoarding” is still going strong…)

It feels like school has been going on forever now and summer is such a distant memory. This was some of the stuff Claire put in her “get-to-know-you” bag at the beginning of the year.
And here’s one of Grace’s schedule drafts:
Just so you know, the “100 sit-ups” have not happened yet.

I’m sure they will though.

Claire let me pull out her tooth with my favorite method: dental floss tied on one end to the tooth and the other end tied to a door that you slam shut popping the tooth out.Even though I plead with my kids to do this every time there is a loose tooth, I think I was more scared than she was for some reason this time. (the tooth wasn’t really all that loose)

All this hoopla prompted Grace to remind us for the umpteenth time that she had now collected THREE teeth under her pillow and was patiently awaiting our inattentive tooth fairy.
The tooth fairy showed up about a month later.

Wow, I’m sure our kids would love to trade that lady in for an upgrade.

We are usually up late into the night working on homework of one type or another.

And Claire has become a serious book-worm.

I love Junie B. Jones. I think it’s funny that I do because I remember my appalled thoughts when I heard Max’s kindergarten teacher read it for the first time. What was up with that horrible grammar? I would never promote those books, I thought. But I have repented of my ways because I love that Junie B. now. I have laughed out-loud at so many things in those books. And of course, how can you not be in love with anything that gets your kids to love to read?

This is Lucy’s favorite thing lately:
She certainly lives up to her name (Tangled).

Max had volleyball tryouts for his club team.
He is loving volleyball and I’m loving having him sit by me during Elle’s games to fill me in on what the heck’s going on out there. He sure knows his stuff.

Grace’s new prize possession is her rented flute she jabbered on about all summer long. It’s like her new best friend.
She has scarcely let it out of her hands and can be heard doing her “trills” from all over the house.

On Sundays we cook together (most of the time).
The girls and I love to make rolls.

A couple weeks ago I had a bunch of meetings and Young Women stuff screaming to be done so I put Dave in charge.

He taught Max to make omelets. Boy howdy those things are good.(Can you guess the activity our babysitter did with the kids the couple days before? Yep, you guessed it, tie dye…)

It was red-white-and-blue day at school to commemorate September 11th.

Grace had this idea and was very proud of it:
That day was also “Grandparents’ Day” at school.
Unfortunately for my kids they have no grandparents close-by so I am the pseudo grandparent every year. I love it.

Grace is loving being in charge of events like this with her job on the student council (she is the treasurer).

Practically every night after dinner Lucy proclaims, “I’m on sweeping!” and pulls out the broom to do her job.
We’ll take any sweeper we can get.

Claire sometimes poses for me and I like it.

Lucy has become an “ABC” fanatic. I was so surprised to go up and find her doing this the other day:
This is typical Max.
That’s his homework spot.

How in the world can kids concentrate with music blasting in their ears? I sure can’t.

We still love watching our family movies on Sundays. Here are my “model #2” girls soaking in some old footage of themselves:

Lucy adores exhibiting her new-found swimming skills whenever she can get someone to go in there with her.
Max is such a nice brother to oblige more often than not.
He even does it with a twinkle in his eye most times.

Elle and her friends helped teach the nearly 500 “activity day” girls in our area a new dance just like they did last year:
(the video of last year is back at the end of this post). Those girls in front were like these “groupies” who wanted a picture with the “dancing girls.”

I tried to get Grace to wear her hair like this to school.
She took it out and we switched it to ponytails.

Dave has two cousins who are both in the “teeth” business. They have helped us out so much with our teeth we figured we better do something nice for them. So we jumped on a super deal at this waterpark place by where we live and took them and their families for a little get-away.
We invited all Dave’s in-town siblings too so it turned out to be quite a crew.

The younger group of girls in our Young Women group at church had a Napoleon Dynamite party. I was giving a photography presentation to the older girls at the same time but from the sound of the laughter and music going on in the gym it sure sounds like it was a hit.
Love the outfits some of the girls wore.
I get to work with the best leaders ever:

(Below is the much more tame photography presentation…LOVE these girls.)
Grace is still into doing her hair…And I’m constantly training “teeth brushing skills 101.”

There you have it, a little catch-up on the life that keeps slipping out of my fingers quicker than I can keep up with it.

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  1. We must have the same tooth fairy!

    I had to repent of my initial impressions of Junie B. as well. Love that girl!

    Could your eager sweeper come live at my house for a while? I'll just keep her long enough for her to rub off on one or two of my not-so-eager sweepers.

    Fun post!

  2. I lovethe picture of Dave and Max doing homework. All your pictures are real to me, but that one just made me feel better as a mom sitting with that same look doing homework. I needed it this morning.

  3. Geez Louise! That was a mega post girl.
    Okay…a couple of things:
    1. Is that swimming pool in the photos yours? It is beautiful.
    2. I love the look on Dave's face while helping Max with homework. That's exactly my reaction 99% of the time and I'm just helping my 8 year old with math.
    3. I LOVE JUNIE B.! My daughter's and I have had some of our best laughs ever reading those books.
    Can't wait to go get your parent's book…"The Entitlement Trap"….I'm so looking forward to reading it.

  4. I have so many comments/questions after this post!
    1. Its fun to see more spots in your house (the girls bathroom;)
    2. Its fun to see you in pics and see your cute outfits
    3. Love that black and white shot with Lucy in her glasses
    4. From Grace's schedule–homework after dinner every night? I go back and forth with the timing of all of that !Agh!
    5. That pic of your husband pulling at his hair while helping with homework is hilarious–I am so not excited about homework as my kids get older. (nice night shot by the way)
    6.I can not deal with pulling teeth, the door slamming frightens me.
    7. Does your son babysit? Surprised by the babysitter comment, and wow that your sitter does activities like tie dying a shirt with them!
    ok, thats all;)

  5. wow! I'm so glad I'm not the only one that couldn't stand the Junie B Jones Grammer! ha! So you're telling me I should stick with it and let my first grader read them??!! I'm all about a good laugh πŸ™‚

    The tooth fairy thing cracked me up!

  6. What are museum did you go to?? Because I recognize that glass piece! It's Josiah McElheny right? I wrote a paper about him in school (at BYU). That's so cool! I posted the paper on my art blog. Funny to see it somewhere else!

  7. random question:
    What is your kitchen's paint color name?
    We have one that is similar just a shade darker. We're repainting the kitchen and I'm interested in your color.

  8. HEY! i absolutely ADROE your blog i just recently started looking at it because i saw your video on
    SO i have a question. i am a college student, its my freshmen year, but i have always wanted to be into photography and seeing your AMAZING pictures makes me want to even more. I want a really good camera that i can afford and that will be worth the money. I want to start doing photo shoots and getting into photography. So i would be putting good use into the camera and probably having it for a really long time. do you have any reccomendations on cameras?
    p.s i just now made a blog so that i could post this comment hahah hopefully with a new nice camera ill keep it up. you are an inspiration to all

  9. Giggled at "Read while doing a straddle." on Grace's list.

    Love Dave's "homework expression"! I remember that EXACT expression on my dad's face when helping me.

    No paint in the art museum…How ironic!

  10. Thank you for always letting us be part of your family! What fun! and even the not so fun is good to see!! I love all of your family togetherness, connectedness, and joy just in being together. A BIG inspiration!!

  11. Loved examining every picture! Go back to that third one of Elle and her friend who are the same height but Elle's legs are about a foot longer! Amazing! So glad to feel "caught up" with the goings on at your house. How else could we keep track of all that?

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