Wednesday, August 19, 2015

July Newsletter & Slideshow

Better late than never, right? (it's been a busy summer) :)

Hamilton Newsletter
July 2015
FAMILY: July was another wonderful, busy summer month! In addition to our regular 4th of July activities in Richfield (parade, park fun, BBQ, fireworks), it was also Jason's Richfield High School 20th Reunion, so Jason & Heidi had dinner at the Senior Center the night of the 3rd, and Jason got to ride the float in the parade! Yay! That next week, the Edwards came for a visit. We had fun going to the Aquatic Center, the St. George Children's Museum, the splash park, and the Renaissance Fair. We also had a picnic at Link's bench :) Ireland's baptism was Saturday, July 11th. It was a wonderful, special day and we are so proud of her! Many people came to support her, including Great-Grandma Tew, Grandma & Grandpa Potts, Aunt Cindy, Michael & Joshua, the Simons, Grandma & Grandpa Devenish, Sedona, Hayden & Canyon, the Hamiltons, the Bensons, the Ballous, the Davies, and the Schoppmans. After her baptism, we had a sandwich luncheon at our home and then we went to Hillcrest Park for some water fun! We rented an 18 foot water slide & we had probably 20 kids there playing on it for a few hours! It was a bit chilly, but everyone still had a great time :) We also did a piñata and had cake, ice cream & otter pops. A great time was had by all :) One evening it was late getting to bed & Ireland suggested we go look at the stars. So - we hopped into the back of the truck, laid down and watched the stars. We saw satellites and shootings stars and the beautiful moon. It was a wonderful summer moment - not as good as camping, but close.  On the 13th, McKinley, Ireland & Kezia got to play on the SAME SLIDE for a primary party at Sister Beachams! :) On the 18th, we finished cleaning out the garage & finally got to park the van in there! Hooray! Also that day, the girls got to go over to Kyla Johnson's to watch a movie in their movie theater while mom & dad went on a date! On the 24th, we joined the ward in a nice breakfast at the church and then the girls got to be in the parade & wear red, white & blue. McKinley was determined to live like pioneers that day and so we went the entire day without electricity! When it got hot, we went to the East Canyon Park to cool off in the stream and Heidi cooked the corn dogs in a dutch oven over the fire that night. It was Jason's Aunt Dee Loris' 80th birthday party in Vernal that weekend. We were all planning to go, but Noelle had had a fever and was cutting molars, so she really was not in a state to travel for 5+ hours, so Heidi, Ireland & Noelle stayed in Cedar - we went to the Park & McDonald's & watched Epic - while Jason, McKinley & Kezia stayed at Sandy's in Spanish Fork & then drove to Vernal for the party, back to Spanish Fork and then came home, stopping by a hot spring in Meadow on the way home. We were all glad to be back together again :) July was a rough month for McKinley & Ireland to get along. There were a lot of make-up bench moments and a lot of having to separate them in different rooms. Bummer. One day our neighbors & friends, the Prices, brought over a laundry basket of clothes they had outgrown. The girls LOVED them and decided to have a full-on fashion show with them, complete with a catwalk, music, multiple wardrobe changes, and a dance party at the end. So fun! We also did a lot of our themed days this month for "make-it Monday", etc & have done some fun crafts (flip-flops with beads, string stars & letters, laminated people magnets, and oodles of perler bead creativity with the Edwards) & made yummy things! For Activity Days this month, we went to the Shakespeare Green Show (fun!), hiked the "C" Trail (hard!) & did a lemonade stand. Originally, we were going to raise money for a cause, but we didn't get stake approval in time, so we just offered lemonade & baked goods for free. Amazingly, not very many people stopped for free lemonade! We still had a great time, though, brightening people's days with our signs & smiles! A lot of July was also spent on the rental that we purchased with the Potts - getting everything arranged & meeting with the current renters. There is a housing shortage at SUU this year, so we've had over 40 calls/emails about the upstairs apartment & have had to do lots of arranging & negotiating. We're hoping to have new renters in it by September 1st. We have also been SO EXCITED to drive by the site for the temple!! It's getting all ready for ground-breaking and we could NOT be happier!
JASON: Jason had a great time seeing many old classmates & visiting with them. We visited with Kevin & his brother & watched a slideshow. The one bummer, though, was that Jason had helped Dave & Jeff build a pavilion at the cabin property and Jason neglected to put on sunscreen. So - his face and especially the backs of his calves were VERY red and painful :( 

HEIDI: Heidi had fun with Cindy & her boys when they came to visit. It's always fun to have them here for a bit in the summer. Jason was also sweet enough to watch the kids while Cindy & Heidi went to see Taming of the Shrew at the Utah Shakespeare Festival. It was SO funny, fun and educational. We had a great time! Unfortunately, her back has been bothering her lately. She threw it out at the beginning of the month and then on the 18th when they were cleaning out the garage, it really tweaked & Heidi was walking like an old woman for at least a couple weeks :( Heidi is grateful that Heavenly Father answers prayers. One morning she was running alone & prayed for a friend to workout with. Within 2 weeks, she's found 2 friends to work out with! She & Carmen do strength exercises on Tuesdays & Thursdays and her new friend, Jamie that just moved in, go running on Mondays & Fridays. It's been such a blessing! Especially with her back hurting, having friends and accountability has made a huge difference. Thank you Heavenly Father!

-At the beginning of July, Heidi & Jason had a few evenings where they met with McKinley in her room after her sisters went to bed & had some "talks." :) It went well & she enjoyed spending "grown up" time with mom and dad & learning new things. :)
-As part of the "growing up" talk, we bought McKinley deodorant. She's excited to use it - but she keeps calling it "detergent" :)
-Another side-effect of her growing up is her desire to fix her own hair. We found some really good tutorial videos on youtube & she has been doing more things with her hair - braids, headbands, bobby pins, etc. It's been fun to see her learn.
-McKinley went to "Girls Go Digital" camp at SUU for 2 days at the very beginning of the month and she LOVED it!! Seriously, we've never heard her so excited about anything! She just couldn't stop talking about all the awesome things she learned & did, including making her own doggie robot, coding, learning about pixels, make an LED bracelet and so much more. She can't wait to go back!
-McKinley was so sweet & wanted to make a skirt on her sewing machine for Ireland for her baptism. So when Aunt Cindy came, they made a cute skirt together. Unfortunately, McKinley's sewing machine needs some repairs, but it still turned out cute & was so thoughtful. Great job McKinley!
-Though we were out of town and so was her teacher for a couple weeks, McKinley still has done really well with her piano lessons! She is learning so much and so fast! We are so proud of her :)
-McKinley got 4 chapter books at the library this month. Mom didn't really think she would finish them all, but she really plowed through them & was done within the month!
-McKinley has been spending more time with mom & dad in the mornings. On Mondays, Wednesdays & Fridays, she wakes up at 7 and walks with daddy for 30 minutes. On Tuesdays & Thursdays, she does our "Mother-Daughter devotional book." It's been neat to have that special time with her.
-McKinley's latest thing is learning about dogs. She REALLY wants a puppy once Sydney dies and she's been reading and taking notes in her dog book about the different breeds.
-One day McKinley asked mom "So... is it Van Gough that lives in our ward?" So so cute... :) She knew we have a famous LDS painter in our ward (Del Parson) - she just couldn't remember his name :)
-McKinley sure loves her texting app on her tablet. She especially loves to send texts to her aunts and grandmas.
-McKinley made elastic weaved bracelets for every member of our family, using our favorite colors! Even Noelle! Thank you McKinley!!
-Another idea of McKinley's was if she had her "dream house," listing all the rooms she would have in it. Things like an "obstacle course room" and an "optical illusion room." 38 rooms in all! We can't wait to see it when she grows up :)
-McKinley has really been good with her chores this summer! She even has extra chore than her sisters like "Wash my face" and "write in my journal" - she has done so good. Great job McKinley!

-What a fun month for Ireland! She's been looking forward to turning 8 and her baptism for ever so long & the long-awaited day finally came! On Ireland's birthday, Jason asked her if she felt old. She replied "No! I feel awesome!"
-Ireland came around with mom to deliver her invitations for her water slide birthday party. Mom is so sad she didn't take a picture of everyone who came, but there were probably 20 kids there at one time - going down the water slide, hitting the piniata, and eating cake & ice cream. It was SO much fun & we hope Ireland will never forget her birthday! Her big gift from mom & dad was a tablet just like McKinley's except purple. She also got new scriptures from mom & dad & she has been so excited to read them. Grandma Potts got her her flower CTR ring (which has already fallen off a couple times - we need a smaller size for her tiny fingers!), Grandma Devenish got her her beautiful baptism dress, Aunt Cindy slaved over her beautiful Barbie Cake, mom spent MANY hours on her baptism slideshow, and she had many other wonderful gifts of necklaces and books. She was very loved & spoiled!
-Ireland is still playing "musical beds" :) She was sleeping with Kezia in her bed upstairs for quite a while, but now decided to sleep in her own room as long as Kezia sleeps with her.
-One night as mom was leaning down to kiss Ireland goodnight, she could see she was crying. Mom asked her what was wrong & she said "
"It's just that I miss my brother. I want to know when he's coming back to us."
-One day mom was in the garden and spotted a nasty tomato caterpillar. One of those huge things. She told the girls to get rid of it, but sure enough, they brought it inside & found a jar for it. When mom asked why they just didn't kill it already, Ireland said "You may not like the tomato caterpillars, mom, but we think they're inspirational!"
-One of Ireland's favorite sayings lately: "What the hey?"
-A proud mom moment came when Ireland was done with gymnastics and she held the door open for her fellow gymnasts coming out. Great job Ireland!!
-Speaking of gymnastics, Ireland is doing so well!! Her current record for walking on her hands is 8 times! She can do a backbend kick-over and a front bend, come up! and she's getting so good on the bar. She can get up there all by herself and is working on the hip circle. So proud of our gymnast!
-Ireland spent a good deal of time with her sisters & Mahina making a fairly heavy duty fairy house out of leftover 2x4s. She had McKinley hot glue gun it together & she had tiny plates with tiny cut-up carrots, seeds, and everything. Beds, cups, etc.

-One day when mom was driving her to a friends, Kezia said completely randomly "Mom -
Grandma will be ready for heaven when it's her time. She is so nice to us!" Mom agreed & shared it with Grandma Potts, but told her to not be getting any ideas!!!
-One morning for breakfast, Kezia randomly went into the backyard. Mom wondered what was going on, but saw what was happening when she came back with a handful of raspberries and placed them in her cereal just so - to match the picture on the front of the cereal box.
-The girls get an extra chore if mom has to take care of their plates or bowls from the table. One day, McKinley & Ireland left theirs on the table, so Kezia scooped them up & took them to the sink before mom could take care of them just to be nice to her sisters :)
-We were doing a Superhero puzzle & after we had put it together, Kezia noticed Spiderman & said "he's doing the I LOVE YOU sign!"
-Poor Kezia has had a hard time lately with summer. She's used to mommy & Kezia time, but with everyone home it's been really hard to find that time during the day. Hopefully once school starts & routines get back into order, it will be easier! She especially wants to do crafts from the books she picked out at the library :)
-Our new neighbor, Jamie Petersen, teaches a music class for kids that are Kezia's age. She went to a preview class & had a lot of fun. It was really cute.
-Kezia was so cute one day. She put together a family "party", complete with invitations, money, treats, 2 treasure hunts, and a game! So fun! We love how she loves to do fun things like this :)
-Kezia was so cute & made mom a headband out of a ribbon, see-through stones, feathers, & pom poms. I am one lucky mom to get so many amazing crafts from kezia! She is so creative!

Our sweet baby boy. We love you SO much and are SO thankful when we take the time to SEE the love notes you give us. One morning mommy woke up really early - like 5:20am - to go exercise. She wasn't very excited about it. It was really dark when she started. But she decided to walk down to where the temple was getting built & by the time she got there, the sky had lightened & there was the most beautiful, pink clouds. It was perfect! She walked away from that spot - feeling SO blessed about the temple and your love note - only to find that you had send another one! This time it was a small, but definite RAINBOW! In the West (which hardly ever happens) - and at 6:30am!! After mommy saw that, she just couldn't stop the tears from flowing & she thanked you out loud for that specific blessing to be able to see your rainbow. How glad she was that she woke up that morning! Not only those love notes, but she has been noticing hearts in random places - rocks, clouds, splatters in the outside fridge, and even when she cut open a watermelon - hearts on all 4 sides! THANK YOU for sending so much love to us this month! We miss you so much every single day - and we LOVE YOU to no end!!We also enjoyed having a picnic at your bench this month with the Edwards, Grandma Potts & GG. We even make a garage for your cars out of "Lincoln :) Logs"

-Oh, our sweet girl! She is growing too fast! At 15 months, she is everywhere & into everything!
-If you ask Noelle how old she is, she says "ONE" and tries to hold up one finger. It's so cute!
-Poor Noelle was not so happy in July. She was cutting molars and they made her VERY grouchy! We went through a lot of ibprofin and frozen gogurts this month!
-Noelle is so adorable at prayer time. You say "prayers!" and she will fold her little arms so cute. The only thing is that her sisters have confused her a bit with the sign for "baby" and just folding arms for prayers, so she will often "rock" her arms during the prayer.
-Mom helped in nursery again this month & again Noelle did SO GREAT! She sat in her seat like a big girl, ate the snacks & drank the drinks out of a big girl cup and even participated a little bit in the music time. We're on the countdown for full-time nursery! :)
-One time in church, Noelle gave mommy a bit of her cereal & mom ate it & said "Mmmm!" Seeing that mommy liked the cereal, she unselfishly took the cereal she had in her own mouth and tried to put it in mommy's & couldn't understand why mommy didn't like that one as much?
-Noelle still LOVES Signing Time & sometimes it's the only thing that will calm her down. she knows quite a few signs but doesn't use them a lot. One that she does love to say and DO is "STOP" and "GOOOO!" It's so cute! She also says & signs "hurt"
-Noelle really does try to be with her bigger sisters. If they are playing on the Wii, she wants to play too & tries to grab the remote or push buttons on the TV. She doesn't understand why they put her outside the door and close it on her!
-Noelle has really started helping to unload the dishwasher! If you can get her from standing on the door, she might just hand you utensils, one by one and say "Thank you!"
-Noelle's naps were a bit all over the place this month with her teething & sickness. She had a fever & just wasn't acting herself. She went from one nap to two naps & sometimes even three naps a day. Thankfully, she seems to be feeling better all the way around & is back to just one nap.
-She graduated from having a tray with her high chair to no tray - just pulling her up to the table to eat with us. She still is known to give most of her food to Sydney, though :/
-Another one of Noelle's loves is her pink swing. If she is ornery, mom or one of her sisters takes her out for swinging & she LOVES that! She loves to be outside!
-Noelle is NOT afraid of the water! At the splash park, she doesn't shy away from the splashing or dumping water - she walks right up there & has a ball!
-Noelle can now point to your nose, eyes, ears and mouth! Also - if you ask her where her belly button is, she just kind of grabs her belly! So cute.
-She LOVES balls!
-She still loves music, singing, dancing, etc :)

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