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Cutting Vacation Short

August 2014

 

We had to cut our vacation short so we could head home and pack up our house and move to Iowa.  We left on Monday, August 4th.  We drove as far as we could the first day, but also tried to enjoy the ride and stop at beautiful places to see the sights.  Here we are at a rest stop in Illinois, just over the Iowa border.
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Really, I needed to get out of the van and walk around as I was dealing with lots of swelling at the time.

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Such a pretty shot, looking toward Iowa.

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Then we stopped at a rest stop to eat our lunch.  Bethany was supervising the boys.

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Levi supervising the girls.
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Beautiful Kentucky scenery.
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Relaxing.
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Olivia swore she did not fall asleep, so we took pictures to prove it.
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Love this girl.
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Winding roads of West Virginia.  I love the drive.  I will miss the scenery, but I will not miss the drive.
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Levi is out.  The chupa was taken away from him soon after his second birthday.  This may be one of the last pictures with him and his beloved chupa.
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Until next time.

 

Susan

 

 

 

 

 

 

Happy 9th Birthday, Miriam

 

July 2014/August 2014

 

Because we were heading to Iowa and Wisconsin for vacation, Miriam took her blanket pictures before we left for vacation. Ignore the stained carpet. hahaha

 

9 years old.
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Taller than her blankets, by more than a head.

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She is so full of joy and giggles.

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She even lost a tooth before we left for vacation.

 

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We spent part of her birthday at a friends house and then came back to the church apartment to open gifts.  Just about everyone was ready for bed, it was late, but what is a birthday without gifts?

 

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Yes, we love Amazon at our home and the box was big enough to bring all the gifts along.

 

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Small Lego Friends set.

 

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She turned 9, time for her own sewing kit so she can sew all the things that need to be repaired.

 

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A couple of dolls, clothes, Lego sets and a sewing kid and a few tired children.

 

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Just because she is so cute.

 

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When we got home, in the frenzy of packing, she and her sisters made and decorated Birthday Cupcakes.

 

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And we celebrated her birth again.

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Happy Birthday, Sweet Pea.
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Until next year,

 

Susan

The Great Water Fight

 

 

August 2014

 

When we heard they wanted to have a water fight the last day and there were some who wanted to fill up 2000 water balloons, we had our doubts.  That was a lot of water balloons to do in one day.  So someone suggested they start filling them earlier in the week, so that is what they did.  In order to get them to stay intact, baskets and buckets were lined with garbage bags and then as balloons were added, water was added to equalize the pressure on the balloons.  I believe they call that physics.

 

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There were a lot of balloons, hahahaha, a lot of balloons.  And these are not even all of them.

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It started out nice, with a toss.  It was nice of the big kids to team up with little ones.
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And then the craziness began and the balloons began to disappear quickly.  I tried to stay out of the fight and sit with the kidlets that did not want to get wet.  I also guarded phones, glasses and other valuables of people who got pulled into the fight.
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Even the older people enjoyed the water fight.
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But the balloons were gone much to quickly, according to the kidlets.  Hahahaha.  For  how long it took them to fill the balloons, it was over way too quickly.  For the risk of getting wet, it went on too long. ;)
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Susan

 

More Vacation Shots

August 2014

 

 

Lunch with friends after VBS one day.

 
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Bible memorization in the background, Thomas in the foreground.
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Of course the baby is in Abigail’s arms, or Bethany’s or Miriam’s or Olivia.  Elianna did not even get jealous.
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Even with all the hours we spent in the van, they were still smiling.

 

 

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Big sisters are a pain in the neck.

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I’m still here too.

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No one was fussy because we were meeting friends at HuHot.

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We had to sit at two separate tables, a kids table and an adult table.  Not our favorite option.

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Levi was much happier this time.

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I have to laugh at this picture.  See, the girls had the camera this night and when I looked at the pictures, there were all sorts of pictures of their food.  I have no idea who they got this from.  bwahahaha.

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Elianna and her chicken and french fries.

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She is demonstrating how to use chopsticks the proper Irish way.

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Mom and Miriam in the food line.

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Hanging out at the church one day.
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Taking notes of things we need to do now that we are preparing to move in less than 3 weeks.
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Shoe earmuffs, the new fashion trend.
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Susan

 

 

 

 

Miriam – Through the Year – 2013-2014

August 2013
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September 2013
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October 2013
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November 2013
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December 2013
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January 2014
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February 2014
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March 2014
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April 2014
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May 2014
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June 2014
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July 2014

 
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August 2014

 
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Fun Vacation Pictures

July 2014

 

Here are some pictures from vacation, sort of to wrap up the adventures in July.

 
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Us  helping at VBS.  Caleb is up front helping to lead singing.

 

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Puppet fun.

 

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Caleb at the park.  It was so hot that day.

 

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A group of kidlets playing Apples to Apples while the Moms and Chuncle Ted solved the world’s problems.
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Elianna having a blast.
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The infamous tree swing at a friend’s house.

 

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This look kills me.

 

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Levi, happy as could be.

 

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So cute, even with the drool.

 

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The swing in motion.

 

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So very fun!

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Susan
 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Matchy, Matchy, Sisterly Love

July 2014

 

We have had these dresses for awhile, but it has been awhile since we have had two that are the proper size to wear them.

 
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Olivia was excited to match her sister, Elianna was in a mood and that mood was not a great mood.

 

 

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I don’t know why I thought taking more pictures would put her in a better mood, it did not.

 

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Crazy lady.

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Did not get to bead early enough the day before and was not happy for church today either.

 

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Bethany is all ready for church.  No her hair was not truly that crazy, it was the lighting.

 

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And Miriam, who is almost always photogenic.  She could have the flu and a 104 temperature and she would take an outstanding picture.

 

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Selfie.

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Abigail took all the pictures, well, almost all of them, so there were no pictures of her, that day.

 

 

Susan

 

 

 

 

 

How Hot? HuHot! – It is Really All About the Food

July 2014

 

On to Iowa we go.  We planned to arrive in Iowa City around lunch time so we could stop at HuHot.  Yum Yum.  My mouth was watering the last hour or so of the drive.
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Some crazy kidlets do not enjoy the grill so they get chicken and french fries instead.

 

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My yummy food.  I could really go for some HuHot right now.

 

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Elianna was not exited to have to sit yet again.

 

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Levi was even more upset about the entire experience.  Poor guy, he just wanted to be running around instead of sitting in a restaurant.

 

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Later in the week, we met a friend at a different HuHot for lunch.  Yes, it was still good.  We had a wonderful time with our friend and her new baby boy, who I tried to steal (not really).
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Levi enjoyed this trip to HuHot much more.

 

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Uncle Ted comparing Charlie’s hair line to his own.  Can’t get a good view?

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Yep, Charlie has more hair than Ted.

 

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So, while we were busy helping with Vacation Bible School and visiting with friends, Sean was busy job hunting.  God moved in amazing ways to drop a job, a near perfect fit for him, in his lap.  He sent out an e-mail on Monday morning and got a response back that day and had an interview on Tuesday.  The interview went great, but he still worked the streets and made contacts and stopped in at companies to inquire about jobs.  He worked harder than we did and if you have ever worked at VBS, you know how hard that is.

 

On Tuesday afternoon, we looked at houses, not because Sean had a job offer, but because he had some very positive interactions with different companies and we did not want to leave Iowa without looking at homes in case an offer came after we left.  We looked at 6 different houses, 2 houses in each of 3 different locations.  The first one we looked at was big, but choppy and did not flow well.  It had one small bedroom (out of 3) that would fit one twin size bed and not much else.  The second house by that one we looked at but only because it was by the first house.  I did not think I would like it.  We pulled up and liked it and the layout on the land much more than we thought we would.  We looked at 2 houses in the city by our church and did not like either one for different reasons.  We finally looked at 2 houses in our preferred area but they would not work out for various reasons.

 

I had been watching the housing market in the city for 6 – 8 months, so I knew what houses were out there.  I asked our Realtor to see if there were any other houses out there that we may have overlooked now that he saw what we wanted and what we did not want.  We knew more of what we wanted and did not want after looking at the houses.  We decided we wanted at least 1/2 acre for sure in a quiet setting.  We knew that might be hard on our budget, but we knew if God wanted to give Sean a job, he would give us a house.  We could not afford to rent as rent is quite a bit more than what we could buy for.  So, we did not fret about it and set up a time to look at homes again on Thursday afternoon.

 

Worked hard and were busy the rest of the week.  On Thursday while looking at the one house we liked on Tuesday, Sean got a phone call with a job offer from the company that God dropped into Sean’s lap.  The pay was right on target and Sean accepted the offer while we were in the lower level of the house.  The house hunt just got serious.  It was August 28th.  Sean had a job and we now needed to seriously look at houses.  We went and looked at 2 more houses.  There was one other house that we liked, but it was above our price range and was not as good of a fit as the house we looked at on Tuesday.  The two big disadvantages to the house that we liked was that it had no central a/c and there is no real basement.   But, it had a big garage with large garage doors and on an acre of land.  It reminded me of a cabin on the outside.  There is not a lot of wasted space in that house.

 

 

So, Sean and I went out for a drive Thursday night to see how far his new job was from the house we liked and to sit and talk about housing and the like. While out for the drive, we stopped where Sean was going to be working and took a couple of pictures.

 

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And now a serious shot.

 

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Then we may have stopped at Culver’s to eat some cheese curds.

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We did make an offer on the house that we liked, but they countered at a price we were unwilling to pay.  With a job offer and start date just over three weeks away we had to cancel our trip to Wisconsin.  More about that to come.

 

Susan

Vacation – To Iowa – Good Food, Good Friends, Good Rest

July 2014

 

We made it all the way to Illinois that first day and of course we had to stop at Culver’s and get some fried cheese curds and root beer and other food I am sure, I just ate fried cheese curds and drank root beer and then mooched off the kidlets.

 
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Yes, everyone enjoyed their food.  It had been about 2 years since we had Culver’s on our last vacation.

 

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Levi loved the fries.

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Here is the big boy’s table.  See Caleb there supervising the troops.

 

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Bethany

 

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Elianna may have been a tad crabby while we were there.  It was a long day and by this time, she was sick of sitting.

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Finger licking good, Miriam?

 

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Friends stopped by the hotel to see us.  The kidlets acted crazy, crazy while they were there.  That is nothing new. ;)

 

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Sean and Thomas playing a game on the iPad and Ted harassing Caleb.

 

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No, we did not all stay in this room, but all the girls did.  It was a huge room. It had a king, a pull out couch and they brought up a roll away bed.  It was wonderful.  We still had room to spare.

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Ted trying to intimidate someone?

 

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Thomas and Nathan harassing Ted.

 

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Elianna and Caleb getting  their energy out.  Honestly, I was too tired to do much about it.

 

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See, normally I would never let them sit like that on the chair or table.

 

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And Levi did not want to be left out.
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That was one of the nicest hotel rooms we have stayed in.  It was a Baymount Inn and Suites.  I was so thankful our friends came to visit, even if for a short time.  We laughed so hard and just had a grand time.  We all slept so well that night. Tomorrow, on to Iowa.

 

Susan

Vacation – To Iowa – Day 1

July 2014

 

In July we planned a trip to Iowa and Wisconsin.  The idea is that Sean would job hunt in Iowa and the rest of us would help with VBS at our former church.  Then we would head up to Wisconsin to spend a couple of weeks with family and friends and attend a big family reunion at my sister’s house.  It was a great trip, even if we did not get all of that in before God changed our plans.

 

Here we are in Ohio at a rest stop.  It was a beautiful rest stop and a beautiful day.  The kidlets were able to run around and get some energy out.

 

Bethany and Levi with Caleb looking on.
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Levi is ready to eat, but not really yet.  He was busy just using  his legs.  Nathan was watching the traffic.

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Sandwiches and chips and carrots, the lunch of champions.  At least Elianna is excited to eat.  I don’t think she really ate that much.  She did enjoy her soda, however.

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Waiting for the kidlets to go through the lunch line.

 

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Caleb

 

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Olivia getting some carrots and Levi not eating his food while laughing at a leaf or two.

 

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I really don’t want to stay sitting on this bench, let me run!

 

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Bethany and Nathan enjoying the conversation and the fresh air.

 

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Abigail and me.

 

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Thomas and Miriam

 

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Caleb approves of lunch.

 

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Olivia

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Uncle Ted sharing some sort of story with us.

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The soda was Elianna’s favorite part of lunch.

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See, my face is healing.

 

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I did not take nearly as many pictures of our vacation as I thought I did, oh well, such is life.

 

Susan