Monday, June 16, 2014

Fun with family and friends

A quick update of some things we've done with friends and family...

Steve got us hooked up to some rewards programs for being a 7 day newspaper subscriber and we got free tickets to go to Castle Park and golf.  

We played just for fun and didn't keep score. It was a fun family night activity.

Jeff and the boys finally cashed in their paintball vouchers that I got them at Christmas. It was now a combo boy's day, Taylor's birthday celebration and graduation fun day. Some of Taylor's friends and the boys all geared up for paintball. One of the boys slept in so they all went to his house climbed up to his room and woke him up looking like this. 

Ready to fight.

Covered in paint. 

They all ended up having fun. They laughed at their one friend who kept shooting himself in the foot. 2 weeks later and Taylor still has one welt that hasn't completely healed!

The next week we got to enjoy more family that came out for Taylor's graduation. 

While Angela and Robert were down we all celebrated an early Father's Day and took my parents out to Spaghetti Factory. 

We also spent the day relaxing after all the celebrations. While my parents did laundry Angela, Robert, Ashley and I took Ian to the park where he tried to learn how to ride her bike...

Ashley also introduced Ian to the joys of making slime. It's just glue, water, Borax and food coloring but so much fun. 

Ian liked it. He like it even better when Ashley showed him a trick...

to use a straw and blow bubbles in it. 

While my parents were out they also got to go to the beach when visiting Angela. Eat at In-n-Out. 

Drive by the house where we all grew up...

and the church we attended. 

I also went with my parents to take a tour of the Mission Inn. 

I've always wanted to do it but have never gotten around to it. Of course none of the kids wanted to join us but I loved it. 

I loved hearing about all the history and seeing the parts of the hotel that I've never seen before. 

It was interesting to me to see all the influences Frank Miller used from art and architecture from other countries to decorate his hotel.  

This chapel was built solely to house the artifacts and windows that Frank Augustus Miller collected. 

This gilt wall of carvings was shipped from a family in Mexico in 32 boxes covered in used, dirty straw so robbers wouldn't steal it. When it arrived in pieces with only pegs to put it together the carpenters had to figure out how it all went back together. 

This chair was specially made for President Taft because of his large size. In fact he once got stuck in the White House bathtub. When he was offered the chair when he visited the mission he didn't like it and refused to take pictures in it. (He thought he looked too big sitting in it.) 

Sometimes it's fun to play tour guide with people that visit from out of town because I learn more than I did before even though I've lived here my whole life. 

This week all the extended family is gone and the boys left on their Super Activity scout trip. 

I told them to pose for this picture before they left so I wouldn't embarrass them with one at the church. Jacob wanted to walk out the door but Taylor stopped him and said "Just smile and get it over with Jacob"

So they are enjoying a week kayaking and boating on the Colorado River. 

After they left Ashley and I took over dog sitting duties for Zeus while his family is on vacation.

While the boys have been gone Ashley has been going from one friends house to another friends and I've barely seen her. Jeff and I look at each other and think "this is what it's going to feel like when we're empty nesters" Crazy. 

While the kids are off enjoying summer my days have been errands, dentist appointments and church assignments with a little blogging thrown in. Next week I'm making plans to take a beach day with whoever in the house who wants to come!

Ashley's promotion

Ashley's 6th grade trip was going to Fiesta Village. I was a chaperone which meant hanging out with other moms while the kids ran around the park together. Ashley had fun going on rides, playing mini golf and hanging out with friends. The weather was even great that day. 

The morning after Taylor's graduation was Ashley's 6th grade promotion. 

We got there 10 minutes after the gates opened and it was already busy!

Luckily we found seats and brought was already warm outside. 

Ashley ready to promote from 6th grade. 

This is the principal and vice principal giving out awards and calling up the children. It was almost as long as the graduation the night before!

In addition to promoting Ashley got the presidential award for her good grades!!  
This report card she got all A's and one P. It was the best report card she got all year and she was happy.  

Ashley saying goodbye to Mr. Cash. She loved having him as a teacher. 

Her good friends Melinda and Brianna. They are all excited to go to middle school next year. 

Happy to have Grandma and Grandpa for promotion too. They even bought her flowers. 

Robert took the day off so they could stay and go to Ashley's promotion as well. 

On Saturday Ashley had her piano recital

Connie Byers is the best piano teacher!

Grandma and grandpa Hovey got to come to listen to her play in her recital before they flew back home. 

We said goodbye to them at 1:00pm and after flight delays and layovers they didn't get home until 3:00am their time!

We were so glad that they were able to come out and celebrate and visit with us this week. 

Taylor's Graduation

Graduation 2014! It's weird to think that Jeff and I are old enough to have a high school graduate especially since it seemed like it wasn't too long ago that we were graduating. 

To start of the celebration we got to go to Baccalaureate. 

There was a lot of motivational speakers and some music but due past complaints from a couple of people not so much as an opening prayer as far as worship goes. 

Anyway it was still a good night and another opportunity to spend time with friends before they will all too soon go their separate ways. 

So proud of our soon to be graduate. 

The night of graduation we got Taylor to the school at 4:30. Ready to go and looking good!

The most stressful part of the night was turning our 8 tickets into enough tickets to accommodate all the family that was coming. It doesn't help that we didn't get the tickets until a few hours before it started. Between 3 families and nice guard at the gate who gave us the last one we needed we got everyone in. 

The next challenge was getting everyone there and in seats. Everyone came in at different times and from different places. Seats that Jeff saved were long gone by the time people got there so he finagled 8 seats in the VIP/handicapped section and the rest of us sat in the stand.   

The last group got caught behind the gate as the graduates were passing by. Jeff was on the other side of the gate waiting to give them their tickets. 

It took 20 minutes for them all to walk through!

Once everyone was in and had seats we could relax! My parents flew out from Virginia for the occasion and Angela and Robert came out as well! I was happy to have them.

Taylor had 754 students in his graduating class!!

We heard some great talks and a wonderful choir performance and then it was time for them to be called up to the stage. 

Congratulations class of 2014!!!

Next we walked through the crowds to find Taylor. Thank goodness for cell phones!

So proud of you Taylor!

Kelzey even came out to see him :)

After graduation we had an open house at the house. 

We ended up getting back at 8:30 which was a little late but Ian didn't seems to be too tired :)

Sibling love. 

We were so happy the Liesl drove all the way from Palmdale to be at the graduation with us! Liesl graduated this year too! Close cousins and friends!

So happy for you

OK time to ditch the cap and gown and relax with family and friends!

Taylor's young men's president, former piano teacher and ward friends all came over to wish him well along with family. Thanks for all the support. 

Now that graduation is done his sights are set on the future...