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HOLIDAY Sessions are Full. Taking appointments for February 2013.

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Random

BUT vitally important for documentary purposes...
(translation...unless you birthed any children in the below images you could probably care less and should therefore skip ahead to the end).
-This first hodge-podge includes a snapshot of 2 young boys who thought it'd be cool to mix-n-match their army gear (and until a mother took a photo of it, they were not one bit embarrassed).  
-I became obsessed with making my own frozen yogurt in my awesome cuisinart machine (recipe: large container of vanilla greek yogurt and a can of sweetened condensed milk...and any flavor you can imagine! - After being made fun of I have stopped bringing it with me everywhere I go... :) 
-Spent an afternoon on the porch listening (and lots of singing) to the entire album of Les Miserables...and enduring weird looks from our children
-Ella's buddy kitty "Cat" made a collage for a school (college) project...we loved it
-Found some old photos of my "softer" days romping through Scotland...softer is a much nicer word don't you agree?
-Found a college flier for a housewarming party my roomie and I threw...pretty sure it was her idea.

We took the kids camping a whole 10 minutes away at one of the Wright family cabins in Groom Creek.  It was wonderfully simple and the kids had a blast.  
-I got talked into taking the dirty boys (who thankfully put shirts on for the ride) on a bike adventure to some caves...we rode for 40 minutes and never found them, but I swear the whole thing was straight of a scene from the Goonies.

McLaren didn't get much photo time on the soccer field...I tried to be a supportive mom and snap a picture of him with my phone.
-It took us almost 9 years to find Wet'N Wild an whole 1 hour away from us...we had a blast.
-Laina took 6th place in the City-wide cross-country race (happy to say there were no tears shed...and her mom and dad shuffled along with her the whole way).  This was huge for her --completely out of her comfort zone and she threw down in a BIG way.  It was pretty during but it was great after.  She has that medal proudly displayed in her room.
-Indy came up with a superhero costume for school 5 minutes before we left..."Captain Crossfit"
-Spent most of our Saturday afternoons helping out at the snack bar for the Fall Ball Rebels Baseball team.  Beautiful weather and great company...and some good little ballplayers.  Indy loved being a part of this team...a few tears were even shed when the last game was over.
-Soaking up last rays at the pool - these girls are a hoot...with their need to shower and do their hair before we leave...I think Laina spent more time getting ready after swimming then she spent...swimming.
-I spent most of my Wednesdays finding bike trails to ride with Jennie.  Rather than racing along these rides have turned into more of a "stop and enjoy the flowers" ride.

I love to see the Temple...

We're going back there this summer...when it will be complete...and will become "OUR" temple - for the Prescott AZ Stake.  (It's right down the road from the waterpark...why do I get the feeling that our kids will be encouraging Matt and I to visit often?)






Sunday, December 9, 2012

Havasupai...with Kids

Yes I get crazy ideas.
Yes, I wanted to bring my 2 oldest kids down to see the glorious wonders that existed right near their backyards.
Yes, there was fussing...(only of the female form).
Yes, we took them down to Mooney Falls.
Yes they LOVED the beautiful shangri-la that we discovered down there.
Yes I got to walk with the girls while Matt and Indy and Bart and Sam cruised on speedily ahead.
Yes, I drained my camera battery and phone on the way down by distracting the girls with music and memorizing the rap the "Brokenhearted".  Yes, we can all sing it now along with a LOT of other campfire songs (that I looked up on my phone while walking....I was desperate and unprepared in the entertainment category).
YES:
-we ALL slept in hammocks
-we ate really good food
-the cafe food is BAD (and yes I opted to pass on the cafe and wait to eat my wraps from home :)
-we came up with a "Strawberry Shortcake" name for everyone
-the hike is exhausting
-we planned poorly and had a mildly disastrous exit hike out
-stopping at A&W on the way home makes everything better
-we will go back again...but not for awhile!

All smiles bright and early!! - about 5 minutes after leaving...



Smile....fading....


And smiles GONE.  This was where I desperately began googling every campfire song I could think of...it saved us...well kinda...

Saturday, December 1, 2012

First comes LOVE, then comes Marriage...

 LOVE...

MARRIAGE...
 Then POOF a baby in the baby carriage!!
 Sweet little Marabelle...commonly referred to as "Belle".

1 baby + 4 kids = 5...can you say FUN?!

November in a NUTshell

November wraps up all the Fall sports (can I get a hallelujah??!!) Soccer and Fall Ball came to a close, we went on a wonderful little camping trip with Grant and Ray & Hezzie, we had a lovely Holdsworth-Williams Sonoma sit-down, we travelled to Mesa then Yuma for Thanksgiving and packed a whole bunch of fun into a wonderful family weekend.
(I stumbled upon some blog boards that come with a resize-input action...not sure if they will work for the book conversions....but they helped me get through this ginormous post --I just realized that they're slightly oversized...oh well - I'll fix 'em next time...mom you can scroll over to see the entire image :)

McLaren played his first season of soccer.  He loved it and grew in aggressiveness little by little (can you imagine smacky being intimidated?)  
Ella is such a help in the office...Desperate working moms will go through anything to get work done...
I love having my own private Thanksgiving dinner :)

We decided the kids needed some ethnic culture...we introduced them to sushi..
I took Indy to see The Giver and Smackdoodle was the best little farmer in the 1st grade Thanksgiving play.  (I'm so glad that I prevented him from going to school his 1st outfit choice that resembled a Chinese laborer).  We hit a killer new dine-in theater in Scottsdale and took the kids to see Life of Pi - a beautiful masterpiece.
 We had a grateful board - I think we need to work on our spelling. McLaren took quite a few tries to say he was thankful for Ella...and our School Spelling Bee champ struggled on "school".






Court and Rachel talked Jace (who is totally AVAILABLE - all he needs is a woman who is willing to live on a cattle ranch with him...takers??) anyway they talked Jace into gathering skulls so they can take them and sell them in LA - apparently Californians are wild for this stuff :)


Thanksgiving allowed for all of my siblings to be together for a few hours.  
(Tim struggles with knowing where to look- but we couldn't just tell him he wasn't invited in the picture).  
We were able to celebrate with my grandfather David B. Noble - it was good to see him.  My kids held still for a few photos...ok just one.

If we had known what Wade was going to do with the microphone I'm pretty sure that someone would've sabotaged it...
 After Mesa we travelled down to Yuma to hang with cousins.  We had a good bbq at the Nelson compound and everyone brought a pinterest dish that they had never made.  Ashlee chose to make her cake with old left-over oil that made us all gag - but hey the texture was great!!










We talked Tommy Gwynn into taking us on some Yuma single track.  It was the Thunderdome/Moon ride.  Awesome ride...and I didn't fall too far behind (of course they had to wait for me...a LOT.)  
Camping with the Holdsworth's is always a wonderful event.  Grant had his shotgun redone (and it had lots of "fiddleback" in the wood...see? I totally paid attention!)  the kids rode quads, McLaren hacked on a log for 3 hrs straight then ate the donuts uncle Mikey Mike brought (and he seriously resembled a Limpnickie-a big ol' plane dropped the donuts out of the sky).  And thank heavens for Uncle Ray Fire-Dance (raised on Sai-Pan) because he taught us all how to cut a mango and eat it properly!
We are so thankful for our family our friends and our faith.  We are grateful for a roof over our heads and the opportunity to get an education.  We are looking forward to the month of December where we get to enjoy more family and friends and find ways to serve serve serve.
Happy Holidays are Here!

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Election Day - 2012

Even as I make note of this I'm still unsure, and like most of the nation, will be glued to the news starting at 6pm to see how the night plays out.  This is THE most tightly contested presidential race since 1968.  

We are truly a nation divided.

My heart is somewhat heavy with the dawning realization that this race will come down to a Mormon winning in Ohio.  OHIO.  Anyone who is familiar with Mormon history will recall that Ohioans DROVE the Mormon's out of the state... {sigh}

I want to go back to the MTV days of "rock the vote" and happy energetic people at the polling places...and Jack in the Box!!  I always associate voting with Jack in the Box (even though I opted to make whole-wheat apple carrot muffins for my kids instead) - my parents would get us up early and take them with them to vote - then we'd stop off at Jack in the Box before school - see?? Fun for everyone!!

We took the kids downtown to the courthouse square last night - on the eve of the election to see Sen. McCain and the Senate hopeful Jeff Flake make their traditional final campaign stop on the steps of the Prescott courthouse.  We had a good time - Indy learned the true meaning of the story of the good Samaritan (lots of homeless around the square) and McCain yelled back to loud annoying protesters to "shut it!"  He said he was too old to put up with jerks anymore, but even jerks were allowed to come to the courthouse... 

Classic.


Sunday, November 4, 2012

Sweet Mama

And sweet baby...

Friday, November 2, 2012

Megan = Beautiful

It HAS to be in the name right??  At least, that's what I told myself as Megan and I wrapped up a fun-filled photoshoot... However - I think it might be her eyes...her personality...her zest that shines through...all those wonderful things that when combined make up beauty, for there is no denying that she is... and was a pleasure to photograph.












Thursday, November 1, 2012

I can't believe it worked...

Of course - bribery helps...A LOT.

Yes - children should be ecstatic to have such an awesome mother who cooks up hair-brain ideas, but my children always seem to chicken out at the last second and stick a bucket on their head for a costume (next year and every year after I'm ok with that idea) - BUT I had this locked in my mind for a year and it required SERIOUS commitment to pull it off.  I don't exactly have cooperating children come Halloween time - hence a monetary bribe.  Seriously I think I got off lucky considering what I asked them to do...

Naturally we had to prep them and WATCH the movie first.  No Johnnie Depp here - 100% politically INCORRECT (with its use of actual "little people" and harsh/somewhat crude rhyming and dance moves) Gene Wilder version for us.  We also had to recruit...Mike TV and Veruca were awesome.
and our OOMPA LOOMPAs were BRILLIANT!! they were such good sports...but let's not forget our tiniest one..
I was absolutely shocked that she went through with it...but she saw the boys and was ALL in (she was able to be a pumpkin fairy for school - complete WITH wings this time so she didn't have to freak out about NOT being able to fly - and being forced to walk everywhere...)
The whole GANG...complete with Willy - he was great..he limped everywhere he went.
Camille-y is our olympic gymnast
and LA-LA-L(uc)y stopped by
and 3 gorgeous musketeers
Willy led the charge leading the troops up and down Mt. Vernon

We had our resident Ninja on hand
and his brother from another mother 
found ourselves the most adorable flapper (her sugar daddy was such an awesome sidekick...I wish I had a pic of Bart and her together!)
and what would Halloween be without a batman?!
THIS whole idea began last year after McLaren got sunburned (or anytime he over-heats) and everytime I would look at him with his little white eyebrows, I had an Oompa Loompa flash across my eyes...so in true self-esteem building fashion I showed him what an oompa loompa looked like and the rest is history.



stealing candy and solving the worlds problems


Lucy is always "camera" ready...Ella is always "candy" ready

This house was wonderful!  The had a massive tub of candy (there's a LOT of people that hit Mt. Vernon)
They even had a piano player on the porch

After we ended our loop - we all sat down for a nice little snack..


Ella's crazy eyes and Bridgers in the previous post just show how DONE the little ones were...that was a LOT of walking!




We didn't have quite enough sugar - so we decided to wash it all down with a little more!
BUT we ended on a good note.  When we got home - Indy told me that he was totally surprised by how much fun he actually had.  I told all of my children last night "I have paved the path for you to know how to have a fun Halloween - now go forth and find your own costumes for every Halloween after - 'cuz I'm done!!"
THE END.
**AND Happy Birthday to my 65yr. old father (these photos count as part of your popcorn/jerky gift), my ??yr old Aunt Alisa, and my 8?yr old Grandmother who is home safe and sound :)