Sunday, July 31, 2016

A Day (or Two) at the Beach

 Baldwin Beach is becoming our favorite South Lake Tahoe beach spot. 
From the moment his feet hit the sand, Noah was a kid with a self-assigned project: dig and dig a LOT.  He had all of the other cousins working for him and declared that Luke was the brick mason.  I love how his mind works!

He really was all business, but had so much fun at his work.

I'm sure all of the other beach goers were thrilled with the screaming baby we brought with us, but after a nap her mood sure improved. 

This girl LOVES the water, even the super cold, freshly melted snow kind.

There were smiles all around and fun being had by all of us.


On a different day we also hiked up to Angora Lakes. I'm sounding a bit broken record-like, but this girl was a screamer.  She loved the water and hated everything else. 
 I just kept reminding myself that it's our last summer vacationing with a baby.  Hurray for that!  And regardless of the angry baby on that beach, the best part was that we were together, and her brothers were having loads of fun.
It looks like pictures from that day are few, but it should be remembered that Noah showed his bravery by jumping off of the big rock twice into that frigid water.  He was proud of his bravery and also not interested in attempting it a third time.  :-)

A Family That Vacations Together...

We had another great week in Tahoe!  This time it included all of the Boyces, which meant more fun, more adventure, and infinitely more laughs.  It also included Leah screaming and not sleeping a good portion of the time, but lets stick to the positives for now!

On our last night there we took a family picture.

And then we took a picture of the kids with Grandma and Grandpa.  One of my most favorite grandparent quotes is by Alex Haley: Nobody can do for little children what grandparents do. Grandparents sort of sprinkle stardust over the lives of little children.
 I just love that, and it is so true in this family!

I wanted to line up the grandkids in order of age.
 And then we let them do a silly picture as well.
There's so much personality in both of those pictures.  I just love it!

We also took a family picture.

By that time Leah's patience had run thin: she was wiggly, angry and just over the whole thing.  The boys kind of were two, minus the angry part.  But we pulled off ONE picture that doesn't make that precious girl look entirely like the disaster she was displaying, so we'll call it a success!

Saturday, July 30, 2016

Eight Months

Leah is EIGHT months old!
You sure are enjoying the incremental independence that comes with being one month older.

Life is SO much better now that you can sit all by yourself.
 You love it!  

Standing is still your very favorite, but sitting is giving you a much happier perspective of life.

While the month was filled with cuteness, it was also a rough one.  You hated sleeping in Tahoe.  I've lost count how many times you woke up in the night.  It was brutal for both of us.  You also found a new scream that is ear piercing.  
Sometimes you use it when you're mad, other times it seems like you're just experimenting.  How about experimenting with a nice little library voice next month?  Seriously, though, it's pretty horrible, and you seem to unleash it after about five minutes of sitting in your high chair at every meal.
But you wouldn't know that from this picture, right? 
You want so badly to be independent and do things on your own.  You've mastered a sippy cup, don't really care much about bottles unless it's bedtime, and do NOT want to be fed baby food. 
 I'm learning you're a 'do it myself' kind of girl, which isn't all that bad of a personality trait to have down the road.

You're also just 'talking' a lot right now.  We hear 'ba ba ba,' a lot.  Noah and Luke are sure you're saying 'brother.'  On our last night at the cabin we sat down by the campfire and you said, 'mama.'  Intentional or not, it was just what your exhausted Mama needed after such a fun, but challenging, week.
 You're getting more hair every day, which means we get some cute bed head laughs when you wake up from naps or in the morning.
You want so badly to get moving, and oh my goodness, you're close!  We joke that you've been paying attention to my exercise dvds because you can hold a high plank just like the pros. 

Your first trip to the beach was a success...after your stopped screaming from just being worn out.  You loved splashing in the water and rubbing your squishy feet in the sand. 
 You've got one more tooth on the bottom for a total of three.

And look how cute you are in your mom's shirt!  It's fun pulling out a few things from 1979 that Nana kept and sharing them with you.

Wednesday, July 6, 2016

The Third of July

Our Fourth of July was GREAT! Cousins, swimming, good food and fireworks filled the afternoon and evening.  But I didn't take any pictures.  Mom fail right there, but, sadly, I'm getting used to those. :-)

So, here's some cuteness from the day before when the kids were dressed in their red, white, and blue for church.

Right as we were heading outside to take pictures the Birons showed up to join us.  We weren't sure if they were coming to our ward or Grandma and Grandpas, so it was a great surprise.  Noah and Luke were over the top excited to have cousins at church! 
 And I was over the top excited about six of the most darling kids ALL looking at the camera at the same time!

Sunday, July 3, 2016

June Bits

This picture.  I just love it.  

My four most favorite people.  When Leah was taking her first swim the boys held on to her float and rode around the pool while Nate pulled.  There were giggles all around, even from Leah.

I've said it before, but this girl LOVES her Daddy.  Leah will just sit and stare at Nate when he's holding her.  She is uniquely happy when she's with him.  It's really sweet, and I hope it lasts forever.

 Look at this girl in her mama's jammies from 1979!  So cute!

The end of May and June were like birthday party explosion.  I think between the two boys they were invited to six different parties.  It was hard to keep up!  The boys LOVED their second cousin Grace's party at My Gym.  It was a lot of fun swinging, jumping, rolling in the ball pit, tumbling and even doing a zip line.

Then it finished off with face painting and cupcakes. Noah and Luke were all smiles the entire time!
We were double booked one Saturday for birthday parties, and Nate was helping with Nana's move so I sent Luke with friends to a party.  His friend Alyssa had really made a big deal about wanting him there (so sweet!) so he certainly couldn't miss it!  I loved getting some pictures of the fun Luke was having with his friends and riding a horse.

After picking picking up some things at Nana's house in preparation for her move I surprised the boys with a stop at Big Spoon. 
 Noah and Luke love to race into Leah's room when she wakes up from a nap and climb in with her. 

They are also really good 'babysitters.'  It helps that Leah is over the moon about them and squeals with excitement when they give her some attention.

Friday, July 1, 2016

Father's Day

Father's Day at the cabin started with gifts, handmade cards from the boys for Nate and Grandpa, a delicious breakfast (of course!) and then we were off to church. 

The Primary kids in the Tahoe ward sang during sacrament meeting, and they invited any visiting kids to join them.  I was proud of Noah and Luke for marching up there and doing their best, even though they didn't even know the song.  Who sings anything besides "I'm so glad when Daddy comes home" on Father's Day???  Well, this ward did, but it didn't matter.  Those smiley boys were a little bit brave and did something unfamiliar, which I just love about them.  They are almost always willing to give something a try.

After giving their best smiles with Dad, the boys wanted some pictures of their own.  They gave me their best angry and happy faces.

 I love how much they keep me and each other laughing.

When we were preparing for this trip, Nate suggested making a dutch oven dinner that we hadn't had in years.  It's more his 'thing' than mine, so even though it was Father's Day he did the cooking.  That afternoon is quite possible one of my most favorite Sundays ever.  We spent hours just like this.
 It was a whole lot of talking, relaxing, and soaking in the pure beauty of where we were while our dinner cooked. 

And I can't forget the swinging. 

Dinner did not disappoint!  Nate made a fantastic roast with summer vegetables.  When we were finished I looked over at Luke and saw a first: asleep at the dinner table! 
 Luke has an 'all in' personality.  He is almost always running somewhere.  After days of playing hard and keeping up with everyone older than him, sleep finally won him over.

After a little nap and more relaxing for all of us we headed back outside for dessert: s'mores!

...and some silly pictures with Dad.
Being at the cabin combined with celebrating Father's day was really the best.  I'm so thankful that my kids have committed, FUN men in their lives.  Nate is the best chapter book reader, Lego builder, confidence booster, bike riding buddy, and tickle machine. He loves each of our kids a little differently, because he's good at discerning that each one of them has unique ways of wanting and needing to feel that love.  We love him right back so very much!