Tuesday, September 27, 2011

my harvest festival parade

The Harvest Festival this year was in my honor since it was my 30th birthday. I'm still not sure why there were so many Bo Pelini heads around though... Anyway, we had a good time like we usually do. Noah got tons of candy. He's learned the trick of turning on the charm - smiling and waving. Though I couldn't quite get him to say thank you for all the candy that came his way.

"Share with your sister!"

This was the best part of the parade. Terry's friend Brent threw out stuffed animals instead of candy. The kids were way excited about that. His daughter is tossing this animal to Evie on purpose. Here it comes!

She picked it up...

...and loved it immediately. She's been carrying around that pink bear every single moment since she picked it up. Noah was most disappointed he didn't get an animal.


I am 30, as of September 17, 2011. Yup, I've crossed over. I know you won't want to hear about me feeling "old" so it's good I don't. The only thing I was worried about was if the youth would now think I was. Old, that is. And they reassured me that they don't. So I'm good.

I didn't want a big party or anything. Just wanted to hang out with my best friend. So he complied, after his nap. HA! He had been up late the night before for a "5th Quarter" which takes place after a home football game.

Terry got me McDonald's, donuts and a white chocolate mocha for breakfast. Then I had my own personal parade. Or that's how I saw the Harvest Festival parade this year.

Before Terry took me out for a date night (Mexican, shopping and ice cream), he presented me with the cake he made all by himself, chocolate, the cards the kids had made (Evie's was written by him b/c she didn't want to do one - little punk), a new ESV study bible and a Hannah Montana "Have a rockin' birthday" balloon that the kids picked out themselves. My favorite part was the balloon, after the Bible of course.

Noah's card. He's really into stick men and happy faces right now.

Sweet Bible

And my sister sent these all the way from SD. Not sure how she did it, but they were gorgeous and I was touched that she sent them. Thanks Steph!

Monday, September 26, 2011

finishing our stone patio

Let me just say it: My husband is awesome. He spent his whole weekend working on our stone patio and he knocked it out. It looks fantastic!

So, back story. We bought this house just over a year ago and re-did a lot of the inside but left the outside mostly the same. This spring we started working on this back stone patio and just now got it finished - it's Fall now.

Here is a picture of how we had used the area, unfinished. This was at the end of June. See the stones against the house? They are there to cover up the dirt that doesn't have any plants in it like it's supposed to, b/c you see, I'm not a gardener. Yet.

See all the dirt? This is Saturday when Terry up and decided he was going to work on this project. We had a nice time helping and playing outside all day. Noah was especially helpful.

The dirt is ready for some gravel to go over it. We were told sand would be best but this is what we had access to and it served it's purpose.

Even Samuel had a good time.

We got some free gravel from a friend. Daddy used the wheel barrow to haul it over and Noah raked it out flat.

This is how much he got done on Saturday. He used that board to ensure the stones were all level. I made him stop at 6 (he didn't want to) so we could have a pizza family movie night - Peter Pan. He raised the stones next to the house to ensure that no water finds its way into the dungeon, like it has in the past.

After lunch on Sunday he and Jon, a youth grouper, finished it up. They laid out all the stones...

...Then poured sand mix cement over the stones and brushed it into the cracks.

...Then Terry sprayed water over it and a couple more times before we went to bed, and again this morning. Now it'll harden up and we can walk on it!

I swept and washed off all the mess and now it looks even better.

Friday, September 23, 2011

Elmer III

Saying good bye

Elmer II

As I mentioned before, Terry's grandfather passed away earlier this month and we went home for the funeral, along with the entire family. One of Terry's cousins is a photographer (there are 2 in the family) and he took photos of everyone after the funeral luncheon. He is actually the same photographer who took photos for our wedding.

Here is Terry's dad's family, which includes us and Shari and Jesse. Samuel was at my parent's house napping.

Here are the 8 children of Elmer and Dorothy. Left to right, Bob, JoAnn, Jim [Dorothy], Dallas, Barb, Jerry and David. Oh, I guess that's only 7. Darryl must have already left - he's the oldest.

So, with 8 siblings, you can imagine the large amount of grandchildren that were added - they have 22! It was quite an overwhelming experience coming into this family but it's great fun.

And here's the entire family. The 28 great grandchildren are thrown in too.

The Fort

"The Fort." Not much to look at right? Well, apparently, it used to be pretty sweet for a few young boys I know.

Here is a picture of a picture of The Fort in its prime. Those are Terry's cousins! Jason on top, left is Jackson, then Terry is inside, then Justin and finally Jamie on the right. The four J's are all siblings. And it was those boys that primarily made The Fort from an old tipped over outhouse on Terry's grandfather's ranch. They added to it over time (even a second floor and a door with a hinge) and it was of the utmost secretive nature. They had covert boy meetings in there.

Shari stood in for Jamie for this recreation photo. Notice what Terry is holding. That is the same can of Raid from the original photo. They found lots of good stuff in there...

He's cute. Then and now.

Here is the fabled Jar of Girlfriends. Terry didn't have much to do with this b/c he was too young, but his older cousins put pictures of girls in there. They were mostly models from the Sears catalog. They also found a wallet with more pictures in it.

Here's the back of The Fort.

Terry's holding a "weapon," Raid can and a mallet. The Weapon, one of many, was used by all the boys to defend their girlfriends from enemies - tall weeds. They whacked them to the ground. No idea what the Raid can was for. The mallet was used to call to order the boys' meetings.

Inside was pretty messy but there was tons of stuff still in there from like 25 years ago.

Terry and Justin were brave enough to go in. Of course they needed a Tetanus shot when they got out, but yeah, they were okay. Just joking about the shot. It was a ton of fun to learn about this magical place from Terry's youth.

Justin's wife Lori, a photographer, took more photos and posted them on facebook. Here is the link, though I'm not sure if it will work.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

playing all together

Evie has been starting to get a taste of her own medicine. Like she used to upset Noah's plans, Samuel is beginning to mess up hers. Sure is cute though.

Monday, September 19, 2011

school project 2

I tried to get Noah to postpone his science project for the week b/c I was so tired, but he would have none of that. He insisted we do it and wouldn't even wait til after lunch. Perhaps it's b/c we watched a video about how to make a weather vane - he loves videos. So, we did it.

The wind is from the south.

That's red clay anchoring it to the bottom and the stones are from VBS and they're keeping it from blowing away.

We brought it back in and Noah had fun drawing on it. I think it looks like a turtle but he said it was the different directions. And then all the stick people are us. I love how mommy and daddy and Noah and Evie are holding hands.

Mommy and daddy holding hands again. Oh, and Samuel and Snap dog.

Noah and Evie are on the other side of the arrow.

Tuesday, September 13, 2011


Terry's grandfather, Elmer, passed away at his home with Terry's dad Jerry and his wife Dorothy at his side on Friday, September 2, 2011. His health had been failing for the last couple years and he was prepared to go but we miss him so much. He left behind a large family, completely intact - He was the first one out of 8 children, 22 grandchildren and 28 great grandchildren to meet his Creator.

From the obituary:
"Elmer John was born October 30, 1921, in La Salle, Colorado to Elsie Marie and Lora John. He had a sister Lucille born in 1918 and a brother Fred born in 1924. The family later moved to Greeley, Colorado and Potter, Nebraska before settling in Billings, Montana in 1931.

"Elmer graduated from Billings High School in 1939. That was the same year the family started building a cabin in Red Lodge, Montana. The cabin was a vacation get-away then and still is today [where we vacationed August 2010].

"He moved to Dayton, Ohio in 1941 and worked as a civilian aircraft mechanic at Dayton Air Force Base. On April 13, 2942 he married Dorothy Jean. In the fall of 1942 he transferred to Ellsworth Air Force Base and continued his employment as an aircraft mechanic. In the summer of 1943 Elmer joined the Army Air Force and served until December, 1945. All but 30 days of military time was served in Europe. After his discharge he returned to Ellsworth Air Force Base continuing in the mechanic field. In 1949 Elmer and Dorothy purchased land near Black Hawk and later started a dairy farm operation. In 1963 Elmer purchased a ranch south of Tilford to expand the dairy farm. While Dorothy and the kids ran the farm, Elmer served in various capacities in civil service. In 1966 he was appointed to chief of Production to coordinate the installation of minute man missile sites in Sedalia, MO; Great Falls, MT; Cheyenne, WY: Minot, ND, and finished his career at Ellsworth Air Force Base in 1979. Elmer purchased and restored a damaged 1947 Navion airplane and enjoyed flying. He was a member of the Evangelical Free Church [where Terry had gone to since before birth, where we met and were married and moved away to come here] and made church a priority, seldom missing a Sunday. He also belonged to the Gideon organization. Elmer is survived by his wife of 69 years Dorothy, six sons: Darryl, Scenic; Bob, Helena, MT; Jim, Piedmont; Jerry, Tilford [Terry's dad]; Dallas, Piedmont; and David, Black Hawk; and two daughters, JoAnn, Gothenburg, NE; and Barb, Moorcroft, WY. Elmer was blessed with 22 grandchildren, 28 great grandchildren and one great, great grandchild. He was preceded in death by his father, his mother, his stepfather and siblings.

"Elmer enjoyed traveling. The trip he shared the most about was to the Holy Land. This trip had a profound effect on his life and used it to further testify of his faith in God. His favorite trip was no doubt his family journey to be with his Savior on September 2, 2011"

We traveled home for the visitation on Wednesday, September 7, and the funeral and burial on Thursday, September 8. The funeral took place at the old building of our home E-Free church and Terry spoke for part of the service, representing the grandchildren. He did wonderful.

Elmer was given a 21 gun salute as a WWII vet.

The six sons were pallbearers: (left to right) Bob, Jerry, Dallas, Jim, David and Darrel.

Grandfather's large family were all there except 1 grandchild. We thought it was amazing that in a family so large, no one had ever been lost prior to Grandfather. He was the first to leave and he left his family completely intact. What a blessing.

As a tribute the family placed hearts on his coffin. Terry's is on the point.


Monday, September 12, 2011

late first day of school 2011/2012, science project 1

We officially started Noah in Kindergarten in our our Charis Home school on Monday, August 22, 2011. I meant to take a photo of the actual day, but forgot. So here it is 3 weeks late.

Today we did our first science experiment. We learned about how hot air rises and takes up less space. We watched a video about hot air balloons and made a snake craft that wiggled over a heat source (my stove burner) due to the hot air rising. We also watched a feather that was a little too heavy wriggle (instead of float like it was supposed to) in the hot air - it totally fell on my burner and my kitchen now smells like burnt hair.

Wriggling snake.