Monday, June 27, 2011

A week in the pool and the reception

After the Petersen's wedding, they headed out for their honeymoon and the rest of us headed to Bakersfield. Most of the men left on Sunday or Monday to get back to work. Steve went on a business trip to Utah while we stayed at my Mom and Dad's house. We had a week ahead of us of relaxing by the pool before we had a reception to give. We were all so excited for this week because we knew we would have this time to spend together. I really love being with my family and just relaxing and enjoying each other. All week, we woke up, went out to swim and then shared dinner together.
My sister Laura's birthday was on Monday and to celebrate all the women went out to dinner. I Loved it! Happy Birthday Laura.

One of the days we went out to a produce farm in Bakersfield where they grow and sell all sorts of delicious food. We started out picking blueberries and they were so perfect right off the plant. Then we moved on to plums and apricots. They were all so good and we didn't even feel guilty about eating so much since it was fruit. We had a great time and I am glad we decided to go.

{fun corn pit found at the farm. did they think about what a group of boys would do in the pit?}
{The blueberries! We ate sooo many of them, and we didn't even make a dent.}
{Most of the group made it in this picture}
{Steven with the apricots and plums}

{rock candy}
{The baby who does not like to sleep on the go. Poor kid. :( }

By Saturday we had enjoyed hours of leisure and we were ready to get this reception together. I am little help when it comes to parties because I have no decorating skill or interest. Pretty much all aspects of the party I am useless with, but I am happy to help where needed if anyone finds a job for me. My sisters and sister-in-law are so good when it comes to these areas though and they got Mom and Dad's backyard looking amazing. I heard that it was just how Tawna envisioned it, so mission accomplished.

{Cleaning up for the reception}

{My older sister Alicia and her husband Scott at the reception}
{The boys put on some aprons and were in charge of picking up trash. They really got into it by the end of the night and were refilling drinks and bringing people cupcakes.}

The reception was a backyard barbecue with pulled pork sandwiches, coleslaw, rolls, and beans. For dessert they wanted cotton candy and caramel apples. Quite a difference from the typical wedding cake, but it was very good and very unique.

{cotton candy!}
{And one handsome little boy just for your enjoyment. }

Sunday, June 26, 2011

The wedding and The birthday

Oh were do I begin. Last week we got back from one of the most perfect vacations we have had in a long time.
{The preparation. 5 excited boys, 2 suitcases, and one messy room!}We flew to Los Angeles on a Thursday. No delays, no cancellations, no fussy children, just perfect flying and got to our destination by noon. Where we had the privilege of attending the temple that evening with Tawna who was taking out her endowments. I LOVE being in the temple with family. It just feels so right. After the temple we put the kids to bed in the apartments that are right there on the temple grounds and had ourselves a dinner party.
{Favorite in-laws}

{Krista and Emily who did a fine job of keeping the children alive while we enjoyed the temple both days}
{Baja Fresh. Delish!}
The next morning we woke up to streamers to welcome in Steven's tenth birthday! Yes, we now have a child in the double digits. I love it. I love the maturity, the responsibility and the better conversation that comes with having an older child. And what a great way to spend his birthday. With extended family in apartments on every side of you. We took all the kids to Chuck E Cheese for Steven's special day and spent a fortune on pizza since we never seem to have the coupon when we need it. We had a great time though while the kids played and the adults chatted (and played).
{Just chillin at Chuck E Cheese the day before their wedding.}

That night we had a beach barbecue with Tawna and Kory and all of the wedding party that was there at this point. It was a fun little get together. We built a fire and had hot dogs and chips while the boys went swimming in the frigid water. It was windy and chilly though so Alexander didn't last as long as the rest. I ended up in the van with him for the last little bit with the heater blowing. Most of the swimmers ended up in there with us as well. :-)
{Our attempts at keeping Alexander warm were failing. All he had on was a little summer outfit. :(}
{My cute little niece Eva}
{Yeah, it was a little cold. }
{The boys playing with my cousin Lauren whom the boys had the best time with}

Wedding Day. Saturday June 4th. Tawna and Kory were sealed in the Los Angeles temple. Eight of my nine brothers and sisters were there and it felt wonderful. The sealing was amazing with some thoughts and advice that I have recorded to use in my own life. I am so happy for Tawna and this next step she has taken in her life.

{All the siblings except Evan}

{Steven being so helpful. }

{The boys getting staged for the tree shot}

After the wedding we went to the wedding dinner hosted by the Petersen's which was so enjoyable. We left the kids behind again except for the babies and it was so nice just to sit in a nice restaurant and enjoy the day. Practically Perfect!