Saturday, April 19, 2008

Elise's Birthday Party

Friday night Elise had her birthday party with a few girls from church. Elise didn't really want to have a plan, so they played Wii for awhile, had some pizza, cake and ice cream. After supper they made cute little shoe charms (which I highly suggest for the 8+ set- they were easy to make, cheap and instantly gratifying. We found the kit at Joanne's).

Happy Birthday Elise!

Happy Earth Day!

Although Earth day is actually on the 22nd, we had the parade in Bend today. The parade is called the "Procession of the Species" and anyone dressed as an animal, or living thing is welcome to participate in the parade. Elise and Samantha weren't too keen on participating, so they watched while Abby, Ethan and I marched in the parade.

These are some belly dancing butterflies.

Here are our tree hugging friends beginning the parade

Here we are.

It wouldn't be a Bend community event without seeing a few people we knew like a couple families from our ward watching the parade, and a colleague of Brad's and his daughter also in the parade.

After the parade there were a bunch of booths set up in the park with eco-friendly companies. We got some cool information, Ethan had to (of course) enter a drawing, and the kids made pinecone bird feeders. So... HAPPY EARTH DAY!

What are you doing to celebrate Earth Day?

Thursday, April 17, 2008

A decade!

Yes, my little girl turned 10 today!! I'm afraid I don't have many pictures of her really young stored on the computer, but I think I will have to find some and scan them tomorrow of my bald beauty.
Elise came to us at the perfect time. I will always remember that she was born on a Friday because Brad had a big test on Thursday and at McGill they always got the day after the test off, which meant that Brad didn't miss the test, or any school because we went in to St. Mary's hospital (in Montreal) around 5am Friday morning. I remember thinking as I was going, how perfect it was that I had ironed Samantha's dress for church already, which is odd because I usually don't iron until Sunday morning :D They watched me for awhile and then decided to induce me because she had stopped moving. She was born around 11 am that morning, 5lbs 4oz, just as healthy as could be which was remarkable since she was 4 weeks early.
One of my fondest memories was on Saturday at the hospital when our friends the Jarvis's, the Glowa's and the Salmon's all saw fit to visit me, all 10 of them (unbeknownst to the other) at the same time, just as they released Elise from the special care nursery. It was so amazing to me that I had such a wonderful family of friends encircling me, since my own family was thousands of miles away. We have always been so blessed with good friends that were close as family. Again, it is one of my most treasured memories.

Elise was a very colicky baby. Here is Benji trying to hold her "just right" and do "the dance" (about 3 months old in this pic)

Elise didn't get her first real hair cut until Kindergarten, here she is bald and beautiful around 15 months old.

Once her hair started coming in it was super curly. 2 1/2 years old.

This is one of my favorite pictures of Elise. She learned to ride her 2 wheeler when she was only 3 years old. In Dedham the kids rode their bikes everyday (since all there was to play on was asphalt) I LOVE the goggles! She thought she was pretty hot stuff!

First day of preschool. The hair is starting to grow now :D

Kindergarten after her first hair cut! Which still wasn't much mind you.
First grade. Such a cutie.

Elise has always had a tender heart and wants those around her to be happy. We are glad she is a part of our family.

Drop off?

I saw this sign driving down the road today and wondered... Should I keep driving? Will I just drive off the edge of the world? Was there a cliff? Was there a sink hole ahead I would fall into? Would you think twice?

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

She's coming!!

After much waiting the deed is done. Tickets have been purchased and Brenda (and Myles) are coming out in July! Hurray! We are so excited for them to come visit.

Monday, April 14, 2008

78 degrees!

We enjoyed our first weekend of beautiful weather! We have had nice days, but not a full weekend of beautiful weather like we did this weekend.
Saturday afternoon we decided to head out to Smith Rock (30 min North) since Brad hadn't been there yet. "They" claim this is where the sport of Rock Climbing began (
I thought it was cool to see this guy's shadow move up the wall with him

There were a ton of people out there climbing. At one time we saw 11 people climbing at once. Each group of climbers had about a half dozen people in them, so there was a lot of activity.
It really is an amazing place. It is like it was dropped by the Gods in the middle of ranch land.

Abby and Elise tested out their skills

If you blow up this pic you can see 2 climbers on the wall behind the kids

Sunday, April 13, 2008

Guest bloggage

Hello everyone, I'm Brad, and I'll be your guest blogger for the next post. Tracey asked me to talk about what we did last Thursday, since she wasn't there. But since I have absolute blogging power, we will now lead a lively discussion about the pros and cons of racial profiling. Ha!!! Just kidding. (hello, is this mic on?)

Anyways, Elise, Ethan and I went to the High Desert Museum to see a wolf exhibit. A husband and wife team from Colorado was in town to do a wolf presentation. They run a wolf sanctuary in Colorado where they take care of abandoned wolves and half wolves left that used to be pets. The tickets were being swooped up fast, so Tracey bought some and was kind enough to let me take the kids. Officially, only kids 7 and up were allowed. Ethan is turning 7 this year, but I doubt we could have passed Abby off as old enough. And Samantha was with a friend. So it was us three.

We were able to use our super special membership priviledges to get in 15 minutes early, and we needed every 15 minutes to get a good seat. We sat on the floor and had to be vigilant, since there were several families trying to sit in front of us. I used my recently acquired "new Brad - no one is messing with me" skills (honed in Italy, another story), and successfully defended our turf. After about 40 minutes of waiting, the show began with an introductory presentation. It was quite interesting. The couple have spent the last 20 or so years taking care of wolves and doing educational tours. Then they brought in the stars of the show:

Maggie, a full-blooded wolf, and Abraham, a dog/wolf mix, were pretty imposing. Very friendly, but people were still a little skittish about getting close to them. After a little while, we saw that they were just softies (albeit with a lot of large teeth) that wanted to sniff everybody. Some people got licks on their faces. Ethan and Elise were able to pet them, but for some reason the wolves were more interested in bigger people.

At the end of the presentation, everyone tried to get the wolves to howl. Abraham was tempted, but unfortunately we weren't good enough:

All in all, it was a pretty cool event. It's not everyday you get to touch a wolf. Ethan saved some wolf fur, and I'm sure they'll remember it for awhile. If these people come to your town, I'd definitely recommend it. You can see their work at

Anyways, that's my post. We'll see if Tracey lets me guest blog again. I'm just dying to do a movie review!