On Memorial day everyone was feeling good enough for us to pack up a lunch and drive up near Mount Lemmon. It was a long drive, but the kids got a HUGE kick out of the Beatles #1 CD we brought and played in the car. Addie slept on the way up and they both slept on the way back. While up in the mountains we went for a couple short hikes and enjoyed the fresh air and cooler temperatures. Addie kept pointing at boulders saying “boulda! boulder!” over and over again. They both enjoyed looking for ants and chipmunks and overall it was a great holiday.
|Ready to go hiking?!|
|Mom and Hinckley at the Tucson Temple open house|
Hinckley started swimming lessons this week and has been getting more courageous doing bobs and "glides". I got to observe some of it when we went swimming yesterday. Hinckley also attended a birthday party (and Kas and Addie joined him when he realized it was an all-girls party and he was sort of overwhelmed by it all). Lately he has begun to incorporate trucks and dinos into his train-playing regimen and it is fun to see him let his imagination run wild. Also he loves "Mighty Machines" on Netflix and has the theme song down pretty good!
Addie continues to explore her vocabulary and copies us much more. It is extremely cute! She's started to put words together like "want it" and "get it" and continues to belt out "Yeah!" to most questions. At the pool she is addicted to jumping/falling off the edge into our arms and it is quite the upper-body work out to keep up with her demanding routine. She loves following Hinckley around everywhere he goes, and if he isn't giving her attention she has her ways to get it.
We had a great time in Zion for a reunion with Kassie's family. We drove up to Zion, stayed there yesterday, and then today I drove back while they drove on with John and Naomi to Colorado. Yesterday H had a blast with Ean and Kohl, playing in the dirt and with rocks. It was very cute. We also went swimming and he was able to run around with his water guns. We had a good time, and I think it went well. We also went down into the park yesterday and saw weeping rock and went on the river trail. That is one of the most glorious places in the world, I love it so much.
|Building lizard traps with Kohl and Ean|
|In the Zion Shuttle with Aunt Rochelle and Mama|
|Weeping rock, Hinckle's all time favorite place in Zion|
|Watching a DVD for billions of hours straight in the car|
|Family photo in Zion|
We did our best to stay indoors this week as the temperature has been above triple digits all week (and nearly all day/night) long.
Hinckley is getting extremely excited for his birthday and Addie and I went to go get a bike for the boy we'll present later this week before the big trip to UT. He and I went to Home Depot for the kid craft thing and made a bug house which was pretty fun! I don't know why I haven't thought of going to those things in the past, especially after seeing all the fun pictures from Trent and kids. We'll be going again I am sure. We also went and saw Cars 3 and despite the fact that Hinckley wanted to leave in the middle of the movie a few times he ended up liking it quite a bit and now all his imaginary games with his trucks and dinos involve racing of some kind. The other night Hinckley wanted to strip down just to his underwear so he could “exercise” and run around and eventually go to sleep like that. He and Addie ran around the couch for a very long time, roping Kassie into it for some rounds as well.
Addie is really repeating things a lot now, and has started making small demands by saying things like “I get it” and “Want it”. She has also started perfecting the dramatic tantrum. Her royal fits rival only Hinckley when it comes to pitch and physical violence. We are all learning new levels of patient endurance. She'll be turning two in August :) Despite the fits and strong opinions, she continues to be incredibly sweet. She'll often ask for kisses, grin at you and laugh till you can't help but laugh with her, and give big hugs and cuddles. It is hard to do anything other than hold her when I am home and she is awake.
Tomorrow we are driving to a small mountain town called Bisbee where we'll tour a mine, watch local boxcar racers, maybe play on slip-n-slides, and see the local parade all in weather we pray will be the promised 15 degrees cooler. We're planning on staying the night at a home we found on AirBnB and come back in time to see the local fireworks in Sahuarita.
|At Bisbee's famous 4th of July kart races|
|Fireworks and glow sticks at Sahuarita "Red, White, and Boom"|
|Inside the Tombstone Silver Mine (Hinckley's cloud 9)|
July 15, 2017
Well, how to summarize the last week? It was a flurry of family, food, and fun. It began with us leaving shortly after work on Friday the 8th and we drove to Dan and Sam’s new home in Goodyear just outside of Phoenix. We broke the news of baby #3 and Sam was very excited that their baby will have a cousin at a similar age. We had a great visit with them, and even had a scorpion scare in the bathroom sink!
The next day we left for Provo. Addie was very excited to realize we were going to “Nana’s House!” and was saying that over and over again, and they both did pretty well with the trip. Lucy and Kendall had baby James blessed in OH1 the next day and we had a great group of family and friends over to hear Ryan talk about being a chaplain. Ryan, Trent, and I went to Jamestown to give Grandpa H a blessing. He ensured to stand and shake our hands and he called us each by name and asked about what was going on in our lives. I am very humbled to be connected in anyway to that great man.
|Feeding frenzie with cousins|
|Preparing to hike timp cave|
|Goofin off with Dad|
|Posing with Grandpa and Jack|
Monday we fulfilled our nearly 1.5 year old promise to Hinckley that I’d take him to Timpanogos cave. Most of the family went and it was fun to have Trent and Natalee and their kids come with us as well as Tommy Spencer. Tristan held Hinckley’s hand most of the way and it was really cute to hear the things they talked about. Hinckley did the whole 3 mile hike without anyone carrying him! It was pretty neat. He loved the cave, and had lots to say about it, naming the columns and other cave geological structures much to the rest of our delight.
The rest of the week was spent at a cabin near Mt Pleasant Utah where we played volleyball, ate tons of food, contracted sickness, had deep discussions, and many other things. Hinckley spent most of his time looking for “BBs” - little pellets that apparently were used at one point as a part of an BB gun war or something on the premises. Over the course of the 2-3 days H and his cousins were searching, many BBs were unearthed and preserved in plastic cups. It was really hilarious to see his zeal in finding those and also enabled him to spend most of his time unsupervised by us which was amazing. Addie was pretty needy for much of the time, unless Grandpa was around! She also had lots of fun playing with Sadie and Annie in a miniature kitchen area and it was fun to see her develop relationships with some of her uncles as well (as she really gravitates to men so well!).
|Awesome birthday monster truck, courtesy of the cousins|
|Birthday boy and family|
Hinckley’s 4th birthday was a wonder as we had a piñata (Thomas the Train that I dangled from the balcony), water balloon play/fight/enjoy, cake, and presents. H was overjoyed with it all and it was so fun to have all his cousins around him congratulating him and hugging him. He was pretty darn excited about it all.
There was so much that occurred and I’ve only scratched the surface.
When we arrived home from Utah last Saturday we were met with our first Monsoon experience in Tucson and it did not disappoint! The rain has been pounding down throughout the week, mainly at night, and the desert has bloomed green in response. It is remarkable to be in Arizona in the middle of July and know that it is in the 70s right now! It still gets kind of hot, and it is much more humid now, but all in all we are loving this.
Hinckley loves the water and puddles and is eager to be out in the wet whenever he can. He is also in the midst of two intense interests: finding and consuming "junk food" and "getting money". "I"m hungry for junk food" and "Mom will you pay me money?" are some of the most frequent phrases out of his mouth. We have instituted a job chart and have given him extra chores he can do if he would like to make a few extra coins. It is funny because he still hasn't fully understood the value of money, he sees the coins as precious treasures for his infamous treasure box.
Addie has been growing her vocabulary and expanding her caring personality. She often expresses her love with "I uv you!" and "Kisses!" she loves copying every thing Hinckley does and also enjoys nagging him too. She continues to sleep really well, and seems to have realized we aren't going on trips and such and is seems more confident in things. Nursery isn't as scary and she hardly sheds a tear now!
|Eating Egee's cookies while the oil gets changed|
We spoke in church today, Kassie about tithing and me about turning to the Lord and we are glad it went well. My biggest fear was the kids but they didn't significantly better than last week (which was a total nightmare). We are feeling blessed.
On Monday we had Mom, Dad, Granny, and Grandpa Great here for dinner and a Pioneer day FHE. It was fun to have them here and the kids enjoyed showing off and displaying their personalities.
Hinckley finished another round of swimming lessons this week and passed his class. He is becoming quite the swimmer! We are considering soccer or gymnastics as an activity to try out in the winter so we'll see if he takes any of those up with equal energy as he did with swimming. Addie continues to enjoy copying his every move and teasing him too. They have enjoyed playing "dinos" this week, an imaginary and immersive game where they run around with Kassie looking for food and berries and getting sick and being healed. Hinckley is called "Hip Fire-lighter", Addie is "Baby Tooth" and Kassie is "Sharp Claw". I joined one session this week as "King Dino" :)
Other activities this week included a picnic at the park, more swimming, and a couple of playgroups. Addie's recent phrases include "What?!" to many of the statements we make, and she also says "Sorry baby" at times when we ask her to stop something. When she gets upset or cranky she gets the cutest angry face and cocks her arm up ready to hit and begins an attack. Then she'll often change immediately into happy Addie saying "hug!" and she gives contrite hugs. Hinckley has been binge-watching Octonauts, a strange show about turnips exploring the ocean. He has begun spouting facts about otters eating red urchins and creatures of the "midnight zone". The other day he asked me if I had ever seen a current, and he went on and on about currents! Ha ha, it was pretty funny how much he is learning about the deep sea. He asked Kassie why we aren’t whales, he would really like to be a whale he said.
We had a happy birthday for Addie this week! She reveled in her presents and Hinckley learned something about celebrating others. We all had fun and enjoyed an amazing Hummingbird cake that Kassie made. We only ate a small portion of it so I brought what was left to work the next day and people were raving about how good it was :)
|2 year old birthday girl|
|Brother birthday hug|
Today is the Tucson Temple Dedication and we watched the three kids of a family in the ward this morning while their parents when to the first session and cornerstone ceremony, and then we are going to the afternoon session and leaving the kids at their house. It will be pretty neat to have our own temple again!
|Shot of the Tucson temple from my second day of volunteering as a parking guru|
|Hinckel-bee the Pirate|
Hinckley has begun to really embrace the idea of being a pirate, it goes with his never ending quest to find treasures and items for his treasure box. Yesterday I made an eye patch for him which I am quite proud of, even if he wasn't too impressed! When swimming yesterday I would throw him out of the water into the air and he was ecstatic saying things like "I flew so high I touched the sky!" and "Dad, I love it when you throw me into the depths of the sea." Addie got a new pair of shoes in the mail this week and the box they came in has become her treasure box since she doesn't have one yet. Hinckley has worked with his regular intensity to ensure she has enough items to get her starter-kit functioning as a full fledged treasure box as soon as possible (including shoving old wrapping paper and receipts in it so she can have her own "treasure").
|Hanging out with one of her birthday presents (potty seat)|
As a certified 2 year old Addie has perfected the full-body-prostrated-on-the-ground position paired with ear-splitting screams and pounding fists known as having a "fit". In a matter of seconds she can move from such a state to a calm and kind hugging approach that will melt your heart, especially when accompanied by "I wuv u!" and "I sorry" as her golden head bends to the side to rest gently on your shoulder or nearby body part. She has loved playing with her new toys and copying Hinckley in everything he does.
|On-demand bed service demo|