Monday, September 12, 2011

Back to School 2011

Our family enjoyed a wonderful summer.  
In fact it ended way to early as the kids went back to school last week. 

The boys are in 7th grade this year.  Being their second year in Middle School, it was no big deal for them.  However for mom (and maybe dad), every year gets harder to watch the kids get more and more grown up.  In 7th grade the boys have the option to play on the football team.  Mason has been looking forward to playing tackle football for a long time.  He was so excited he insisted on his helmet being in all the back to school pictures.  

Lydia started 3rd grade this year. She loves everything about school so going back was a breeze.  This year she has one of Mason and Landon's all time favorite teachers: Mr. Marcotte.  I don't know who was more excited, her or the boys.  

Lydia was also thrilled the first day when she realized her whole primary class is in her school class.  On the front row is her assigned seat, right in the middle of two of her friends from church (Joey and Hunter).  

Jacob started his second year of preschool.  He is going to the same preschool that he went to last school year.  He had to wait a little longer than the older kids for his first day back to school.  He was so excited to go back to the yellow house preschool with the teacher that he loves: Miss Cindy.  


Thursday, July 14, 2011

Camp Parsons

Turning 12 brings a lot of firsts. A couple weeks ago I took a week off and joined Landon and Mason on their first scout camp and Camp Parsons on the Hood Canal. It is a great camp with a lot of history.

They are lucky to have a great Scout Master, Rob Curtis, who is dedicated to helping all of the boys and gives up a lot of his personal time in doing so.

The camp staff provided three meals a day, which were served in a crowded, but serviceable mess hall. The food was, well, about as good as you could expect.

You appreciate their food more on the day that you have to cook your own.

Their troop did a lot of fun activities together, including archery shooting and a service project.

They spent every morning and part of each afternoon working on merit badges. They were able to earn badges for Environmental Science, Emergency Preparedness, Fingerprinting and Wilderness Survival. The last one required them to spend a night in the woods with nothing more than what they could fit in their pockets. Luckily the weather cooperated and they made it through the night. They were back in camp by 5:00AM, in time to get a real wink of sleep before breakfast.


I had the chance to take our Star Wars and Harry Potter fans out for a battle closer to reality -- paintballing. Our friends, the Smeltzer's, invited us to join them at a nearby course. Landon and Mason had never done anything quite like it, but I think they got the hang of it and had a good time. They were pretty concerned about how much it would hurt when they got it, but manned up and enjoyed some fun battles.

Vote for Landon. He's Outstandin!

I'm not sure where he got the nerve to run for class Senate (certainly not from his parents), but somehow Landon got the idea got in him and he gave it go. Having only a weekends notice from the school as to start dates and rules he hurried and put together a pretty good campaign. He came up with a slogan -- Vote for Landon. He's Outstandin! -- made posters to hang and buttons to hand out. It only lasted a week and then he gave a brief speech to all of 6th and 7th grade.

There were over twenty candidates and only four could be voted in. Once the votes were tallied, he was informed that he was not elected. Not sure if that will end his political aspirations or not, but we thought he did a great job and our proud of him for going outside his comfort zone and giving it a try.

Landon is definitely Outstandin!

General Conference

Every April and October we have the opportunity to hear from our prophet and apostles in General Conference. Since it is in Salt Lake we have always watched it over a satellite feed to the church, over TV or the internet. Even though I grew up near Salt Lake, I don't recall every going to a session in person. In April we had to opportunity to go to Salt Lake and take Landon and Mason to see a couple of sessions in person. It was a neat experience.

Temple Baptisms

Last March we took Landon and Mason to do baptisms in the Seattle Temple. They are eager to learn and participate in everything they know about the gospel. They had been looking forward to going inside the temple to perform baptisms on behalf of those who did not have the opportunity in this life.

Friday, June 10, 2011

Lydia's Baptism

Lydia was baptized last weekend. It was a wonderful weekend for her and our family. She had waited for this day for a long time and was so excited to officially become a member of
The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints.

A few weeks before her baptism, I took a few pictures of her in her white dress. Here are a few of our favorite pictures.

Our family the day after the baptism.   

Lydia with her Grandma Evans and Grandma and Grandpa McKinney

Lydia was baptized and confirmed by her father.    
Lydia was lucky to have many cousins and siblings there.
Lydia with her fellow 8 year old cousin buddy Jack. 
(Jack, Jacob, Landon, Izabel, Cameron, Quinn, Mason, Lydia, Ella, and Halle)

After we enjoyed refreshments in the park.  We were blessed with a beautiful sunny day.  

Lydia enjoying refreshments with her friends. 

Jacob with his buddies Sophie and Quinn.  Trying to keep his church clothes clean. 

A day Lydia will will remember always.  
Thank you to all those that shared this day with us.  
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