July was a full month for us. After Terry spoke at Table and we took students to Lead the Cause, my brother and his wife, Nathan and Ana, came for vacation. They moved away a year ago and we hadn't seen them since before Christmas for a short time and then during our vacation out to see them last summer. They had their second child, Elin, back in April and we had yet to meet her. She's so cute!
They arrived Monday, July 18, and shortly thereafter we had a huge thunderstorm like a hurricane. Apparently we have bigger storms than Minnesota so we all enjoyed watching it.
The leftover clouds made for a great sunset that evening.
Whenever Elin wasn't sleeping she had plenty of arms to rest in. Noah especially loves babies and immensely enjoyed holding her.
Evie loves having another baby girl cousin in the family.
Terry took some time off and they all played Pokemon on Tuesday.
Wednesday morning Nathan and I went mountain biking at M Hill. I've been keeping him updated with my rides since I started biking more. He did a lot of biking in high school but I was out of the house by then so it was special to go together for the first time ever.
While we had been in Denver the week before M Hill had caught fire due to some naughty kids playing with fireworks.
I hadn't exercised at all since the half marathon a month and a half earlier, therefore I was extremely worn out during our ride. We took quite a lengthly break here. It was peaceful and beautiful to just sit there for a while.
I love living here! Nathan misses it. I did too when we were in Nebraska.
The week before while my parents watched the littles and used our van to drive around, the driver's window got stuck down. It had been a problem before but we had always been able to get it back up, even if it took a few days. This time it was stuck for good. Terry watched several YouTube videos and taught himself how to fix it. He removed the door panel and ordered the part he needed and I had to drive around like this until it arrived..
Later that day Ana took this photo of us hanging out with Theo.
Friday Nathan declined to go biking with Denise and I and opted to go with Jeff the following day instead. We did Skyline Drive here in town. I never had before and it was a lot of fun.
Those lines carved into the hillside amphitheater are "benches" for the old town meetings back in pioneer days.
When I got home from biking Terry took the kids to the optometrist. Evie had been complaining about not being able to see some signs, particularly those that were electronic and lit from behind. I didn't think she was near sighted because she could read everything else (that wasn't lit up) but Terry was worried since he didn't discover he was practically blind until the third grade (however, I was 16 when I first got glasses!).
Turns out they are both nearsighted, but just barely. Their vision is roughly 20/40 and they only have -1 prescription glasses. Noah got these red ones...
...and Evie these purple ones.
Later that day Nathan discovered the carpet and wall behind our couch in the dungeon were soaking wet. The back hydrant pipe was leaking! The wall was full of water, the paint was sliding down the wall, and everything was absolutely drenched. For a moment I was pretty discouraged. The van window was broken, the envoy needed repairs, the kids had just got glasses, and now this pipe gave out!
See the water bubble behind the paint? Yeah...
The kids appreciation of their clearer vision has grown the longer they have had their glasses.
Later Friday afternoon it was lucky Nathan was there because Terry needed an extra set of hands to fix the van window. It sure is nice having a properly functioning and reliable window again!
While the guys were outside, Shari stopped by with her girls for a visit. Baby Rebeka was born on April 9th and Elin came April 28th. This was a fun picture to take - my two "sisters" with their babies, my nieces!
That following morning while I was at work, Terry's plumber, aka his dad Jerry, came over and had the pipe fixed in a jiffy. So thankful for his help!
Baby Elin spent her days napping in our room so the rest of the house was free to be noisy in. We had all decided to go to bed but when Terry and I ascended the stairs to our room we found a baby on our bed. I texted them this picture and was like, "Your forgot something!"
Sunday was a busy day since VBS started then and I neglected to take any photos that day. I snapped this cute one of Thorin jumping up like a naughty dog and licking Noah. I'm sure Noah egged him on to do it though. When we had visited Nathan and Ana last summer, Thorin was an excessively- energetic-jump-on-my-kids-and-knock-them-over adolescent dog. He is that way no longer. Nathan and Ana have done an excellent job training him and he's a terrifically well-behaved dog now! I just think this picture is so cute. Thorin is huge! He's as long as Noah is tall and maybe bigger.
Monday morning I realized I had taken no "nice" pictures with my real camera so I set about to fix that right away. After breakfast these boys were playing nicely for a change. There had been a lot of noise and screaming from all the kids that week.
Aw so cute.
All the kids quite enjoyed Thorin this time around. He's so fluffy, lovable, and friendly.
Ezra looks a little concerned... ;) Way to share dude.
Time to get dressed Theo. He spent a lot of time with nothing but a diaper on. And Thorin is smiling at the camera :D
See? The kids had a great time with Thorin. I should check out some of the photos the kids (Evie on the right) took with the old ipod...
Tuesday, July 26th came and we all had to say goodbye. They had stayed with us eight days and it was time to go home. One last snuggle with baby Elin.
I needed an updated picture of them for my family picture frame so I made them stop in the yard before they climbed into their van. I wish I had thought of it earlier, but this was the best I could get. Not bad.
What a good looking little family my brother has. Love you guys!