Friday, November 28, 2014

Our Soldier Returns..............

We knew of Jonathan's plans to fly home on the 17th for about a month, but he really wanted to keep it a secret from all three boys - David, Isaac, and Joshua.  The two youngest were easy, but David was tough.  Fortunately we pulled it off when Joe drug him out of bed at about 11;00 pm.

The little boys were sound asleep and staggered out into the living room to see what the "surprise" was in the box in the middle of the floor. Notice how both boys are scratching their necks - they both do this when they are unsure of what's going on!

It was so great to have Jonathan at home!  He had been up for about 36 hours and 
was really exhausted!

Jonathan brought gifts for everyone, including a full Polish army uniform that fit 
David perfectly!  Here is Isaac trying on the hat.

Jonathan gave me a lovely mug from Germany and some very delicious Polish 
chocolates - don't we look chipper for 12:30 am??

We had a wonderful breakfast the next morning after everyone was a bit more rested!

Jonathan's friend, Tyler, joined us and he and Jonathan had a relaxing day playing with Isaac and Joshua.  Both boys have recently learned how to play checkers and have become VERY competitive!

Then it was picture time!

Both the United States flag AND the Army flag were raised that morning!
Welcome home, Jonathan!

Thursday, November 13, 2014

Our Lake Adventure!

Back in mid-October, our family had a wonderful weekend with two other families at Lake Pleasant, which is north of Phoenix.  It was quite a drive for us to get there, but well worth it!  
It was so much fun and the weather was glorious!

The Krauses, the McHolms, and the Camerons - great friends and a great time! 

The McHolm's boat and one of their jet skis.

David and Juan had a lot of fun puttering around in the fishing boat.  They tried to catch some
fish, but were unsuccessful!  Maybe next time........!

Mr. McHolm at the helm!

The boys had so much fun!  You'll notice how Joshua is clutching his hat - this is after Isaac's
 hat blew off in the wind, never to be seen again!

Someone was chasing the boat on a jet ski!

David and Juan had a blast on the tubes trying to knock each other off.  I think the final 
score was 3-2 with Juan winning!

Then David got on with Isaac and Joe with Joshua, and the boat slowed way down for them.
They both got dunked and went under water.  They were both very brave, but Joshua
had had enough at that point.  Isaac?  Desperate to do it over and over again!  What a wild man!

Then Joe got his turn at water skiing - he enjoyed it so much when he was in Arkansas 
with David this past August, and was ready to do it again!

David got to try again and did much better than he had done this summer!  He had to
learn to not be so impatient in trying to get up!

Becky and I had so much fun visiting and making sure that no one went hungry!

We all packed up mid-day on Sunday.  David was a big help!

So was Isaac!

The Camerons had already left by this time, so we didn't get any further pictures
 with them......maybe next time!

All in all, a great family weekend with lots of fun and adventure!

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Saturday Visitors!

Our dear friends, the Doughty's, came by on Saturday and what a wonderful visit it was!  They moved to Arkansas last year and this was another trip back to Arizona to finalize all the clean-up of their home.  Unfortunately, Nancy was not able to come and she and Grandma Parker were much missed!  It was a short visit, but we made the most of their time here!

Ashley, now 17 - how can this be?!!

And Saturday was Amanda's 15th birthday!  We tried to make her visit extra special!

Isaac and Joshua were so excited to see Ashley and Amanda!  They made birthday cards
 for Amanda, which she enjoyed very much!

Joe and Rick - great brothers in Christ!

Having fun with new hairstyles........

getting ready to blow out 15 candles..............

and just generally ending our time together by being VERY goofy!

Thanks, Doughty's, for stopping by!  It's always a great time when 
we get our families together!