Monday, August 30, 2010

Connor's Baptism!

We decided to baptize Connor in Utah when we had the chance to be with a lot of family for Miriam's wedding. It was a very special day filled with family and fun-- a day I hope Connor will never forget. This kid was so anxious to get baptized! It was pure torture for Connor to wait an extra two months so that we could share it with family. As Connor and Seth stood in the water I peaked at Connor while the baptism was being performed. Connor was standing there beaming wide eyed with a smile from ear to ear. It brought tears to my eyes and a smile to my face as I've never witnessed a more eager or excited person to be baptised in my life! :) God bless his little heart!

July 27th, 2010 Connor became an official member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints!

Heidi and the kids drove an hour and a half to be there for it. Thanks for representing the McKeehan side guys! :) Heidi played the piano and Ashley sang a beautiful solo of "When I am Baptized".

The Washburn side! Becca gave a wonderful talk on what it means to be baptized, and Grandma Washburn gave an equally wonderful talk on receiving the Holy Ghost. Grandpa Washburn gave Connor a beautiful confirmation as he gave him the Holy Ghost. Great Grandma Washburn threw Connor an awesome BBQ afterwards filled with delicious food and lots of fun! We want to thank all of you for helping to make this be such a special day for Connor! We love you and are so happy you could share this day with us! XOXO

After the baptism Connor received his very own set of scriptures with his name on it!


"When I am Baptized"

"I like to look for rainbows whenever there is rain and ponder on the beauty of an earth made clean again.


I want my life to be as clean as earth right after rain. I want to be the best I can and live with God again.


I know when I am baptized my wrongs are washed away, and I can be forgiven and improve myself each day.


I want my life to be as clean as earth right after rain. I want to be the best I can and live with God again."

Family Fun Center!

Mini Golf


Bumper Boats

Lazer Tag

and Video Games!
Does it get any better than that?!?

Random Summer Fun

Connor, Caleb, Josh, and Porter got their faces painted as we ate dinner, listened to a live band and played in the fountain on a perfect summer night!

The newest member of the Cullen family! ;)-

Destiny is such a good Aunt always reading and playing games with the kids!

My handsome nephew, Porter, with his butterfly. We were able to watch these butterflies (over the weeks we were there) hatch from cocoons. The kids thought it was awesome!


My beautiful nieces (Megan, Kenna, and Ash) getting their faces painted at the sand castle contest in downtown Portland.


Taking the Max is a treat in and of itself to the kiddos!


Poppy might try to deny it, but he is a good babysitter! :)


LOVE IS... THESE KIDS! (And I like that you can see the adults lounging in the top of the photo !:)

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

DANG IT!

So I just saw a stupid little floating baby on a friend's blog (nothing personal... I did it too when I was pregnant! :) and for the first time in a LONG time I felt something. I want a floating baby on my blog with a countdown until SHE arrives! ;) It brought tears to my eyes! The desire was there, but then reality hits and I just don't think I could handle it. I already feel like I live at the circus! ;)- I just don't think I am built the same as some of you other women. I have little patience, yell lots, am harder on my kids then I should be, need more kid-free breaks than probably most of you, stress too much, and frustrate easily. (And let's not even explore the fact that I don't cook, bake, sew, sing, etc! ) I am positive no one could love my boys more than I do, but sometimes I worry if my actions show that. So for now, I need to be happy and enjoy the three wonderful little men I have!

Monday, August 23, 2010

Football

Okay, so I have been trying to get the summer vacation posts out of the way before I move on to other things... but this kid is just too funny!
Connor decided that this Fall he wanted to try football. I figured he was eight now and probably old enough to handle tackle football? The kids in the neighborhood play touch football in the street all the time and Connor seems to be better than most of them (even the older ones). So I said, "Why not?"
Well, I will tell you why not! How about because there are going to be kids twice Connor's height and five times his weight claiming to be eight out there!? And how about because it has already put us out more than $500? Or, what about the fact that they play 4 days as week, 2 hours a day? Never mind that it is 100+ degrees with 90% humidity out there. Or, did you know that the duty of being the 'team mom' would be enough to fill two full time jobs in and of itself? Still not sold? Well how about if nothing else, I would not sign up for football based on this reason alone... that there are some CRAZY-SCARY football parents out there!

After Connor's first practice he came home with a bloody knee on his right leg and a huge bruise (the picture does not do it justice) on his left thigh. (This is pre-gear.)

One week later and the team was ready to practice in full gear!

BEFORE

AFTER

Connor has repeatedly told me he likes it, just not the tackling part! :) So, he simply worked out a system to get around it. The coach has them line up in two lines and gives the first kid in line #1 the ball and tells him to run straight onto the kid in line#2. Line #2 then tries to throw the runner to the ground with nothing but brute force. Connor told me he always counts the number of kids in the line across from him. If he is less than pleased with who he is paired up with, he simply offers the person behind him to go ahead of him. Much obliged, they do it! ;)-

But before I make my kid out to sound like a total wuss... he actually is not! As of week three he is one of the teams best tacklers. The coach has caught on and now lines him up against the biggest kids on our team. Which makes me proud, but also scares me to death because I know he is getting hit pretty hard out there. And Connor seems to be able to take the beatings, too, without getting mad to the point of fits of rage, or crying like some of the other kids.

Connor is not the fastest one on the team, but he is still fast and seems to have the most stamina if you ask me. He is almost always in the top 3 runners beginning, middle, or end of practice.

I wouldn't know about his throwing or catching skills because I do not think they have thrown a ball yet since he has started this league. I think it's hilarious! I guess at this age they run all the plays?

I can hardly stand to sit there in the shade and watch him play in the sickening heat, and I am not the one running around nonstop with all that heat trapped inside! But somehow he hardly complains about it... just about "getting beat up". Poor kid.

After two weeks he has made up his mind that he is NOT going to play again next year. I told him if that is what he decide that is perfectly fine with me, but to at least wait until the games start before he makes that decision. And if he still feels that same way... then that is great, but that he still needs to finish off the season strong. He was perfectly fine with that. And he has been giving it his all... each and every practice!

On the drive home at 8:45pm:
Connor: Do you know what the best thing about football is?
Me: (Excited to hear him say something positive about it!) No, what!?
Connor: You get to stay up past your bedtime.

Future MVP? I doubt it!

Man, I love this kid! :)

Sunday, August 22, 2010

TRAIN CONCERT!!!

It all went something like this...

Sean (my brother) pulls up after work one day driving this...

(yes, I am kissing the car!)

a new 2011 5 series BMW (or something like that... I really don't know my cars... all I know is that it was a SWEET ride. And for those of you interested... it is STARTING at a mere $60, 575.

So he says glumly, "Sorry guys I have to work this weekend. They are making me drive this lame car up to the Columbia Gorge to show it off at the Train Concert. Would any of you want to come with me, I only have sucky VIP seating?"


It was a tough decision, but in the end Candace and I decided to leave the kids behind with sitters for a gorgeous day at the Gorge, listening to live music from one of my favoirte bands and jamming with Train only a few rows away!
Candace and Tiff before the concert started.






video


Watch the guy in the black shirt... "Who cares about Train!?... Check out that chic dancing! ;)-


video

Drops of Jupiter

video

Hey, Soul Sister!
And it was all made possible by this handsome devil that I call my brother.

Oh, and did I mention the concert was at a winery? There were thousands of these suckas laying around everywhere and at only $30 a bottle!


Bottoms Up!

Monday, August 16, 2010

Grandmas

I was able head over to my Grandma McKeehan's and show up with the three boys for a surprise visit. She loved it! I was worried she might not know who I was, but she did! Shortly after we arrived Ryan's family showed up. Heidi, Ashley, and Kenna all played amazing piano pieces for Grandma and her friends and Kenna even did a few gymnastic tricks. We went back to her room and the kids cleaned Grandma out of about five different tins of stale cookies, hard jellybeans, and nuts! :) I think she liked sharing and the kids didn't seem to mind a bit that they had probably sat there waiting for them since the last time they visited! :) She handed out watches to the boys and necklaces to the girls. We had a nice chat and it is nice to know that Grandma is in such a nice facility with friends and good care takers.

We also took a trip to McMinnville to spend the day with Grandma Maine. Unfortunately we forgot our camera and I was not able to get a picture with her. I could tell Grandma was having a bit of a hard time with the loss of Grandpa back in December. But she too seemed to be in a wonderful home home with an AMAZING caretaker and surrounded by people who truly seem to love her. She is in a home with acres and acres of beautiful wetlands right behind the house. There is a family of deer that have made it there home there. We spent a lovely day at the park chatting with Grandma as the kids ran around and played.

I love both these amazing women and I am grateful to have them in my life. I hope when I grow old I can have the spunk and personality these two ladies radiate.

OMSI


While in Portland we also spent a day at OMSI. The kids had great fun spending time with both McKeehan and Washburn cousins again! Candace was able to get us ALL in for free with their OMSI membership. Thanks Candace!

Mad scientists!


Dallin loved this fish tank built into the wall of the child play area.



My favorite was when Jack was happily playing in this sand area until Candace saw a snotty nosed kid come up to him (you know the green stuff with dual action) and quickly came over to move him away! :) I can't say I blame her.



Learning about how we get fresh water.



Connor conducting electricity.

There was all sorts of educational fun to be explored there. I think a few favorites were the water and air rockets, chemistry experiments, the sand play area, and the earthquake house.

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Oregon Zoo

I was more than pleased when I realized that our Houston Zoo membership got us into the Oregon Zoo for free! Especially since we went there twice while we were in town! :)


the Moms (Katrina, Kimm, and Tiff) ... trip 1
The chilluns (Ryan, Heidi, and kids drove out from Utah to spend a couple of days with us while we were there!) on zoo trip 2


Dallin LOVED this sea otter... and he seemed to like Dallin, too!

Cute baby elephants! :)


Dinosaurs were at the Portland zoo while we were there, which I was happy about since we missed seeing them when they came to Houston. Most of them were life size and animatronic. Pretty cool!

Eli and his Nana.


Dallin digging for dino bones!


kids zoo trip #1

We were lucky enough to be able to meet up with our California cousins (and Eugene cousins- seen with the moms in the very first photo) at the zoo! They happened to be in Portland at the same time for a couple of days!

Yikes! (Connor and Josh)



Love this pic!
AHHHHH!

It is not everyday that you get to see Hippo-bottom-us'! Ha!

I tried with all my might to convince those around me to skip over the petting zoo... I hate them with freaky goats running around and spreading their diseases everywhere. But if I had not let them I would not have this cute picture! :)

Seaside!


We lived at our parents house in Portland for a good 10 days this summer! My dad took off a few days of work to do fun things with us. One of which was to go to the beach with us... twice! The first time we got Nana, Poppy, and Desty all to ourselves. The second time we went with Sean's and Ryan's family as well!

Even Colton made the trip! Lucky dog! (hehe) Isn't my lil' sis beautiful!?!

Seriously, my Dad is cooler than yours! :)

Connor making a sweet catch while playing football with Uncle Sean.

Mom and Big D enjoying each other's company down in the sand!

trip 1

trip 2

After enjoying the beach we had a blast on the bumper cars...

(Jack and Sean)
(Tiff and Eli)
... and riding the Twirl-A-Whirl!

(Connor and Porter)

And of course both trips up there included Elephant Ears, fresh salt water taffy and home made fudge!

Thanks for the great time (twice!) Mom and Dad!

P.S. Isn't my mom beautiful!?!