In the evening we have been working on the yard little by little as a family. It has been hot these last few days so we aren't getting tons accomplished but we are seeing progress. John and some of the kids went and bought a couple dozen pavers so that the kids would have a path to the trampoline and around the garden without walking in the dirt. Setting the pavers in place has been quite the job for the kids but they are proud of their work and so are we.
John built two more raised garden beds and this time we are digging down 12 inches so that whatever we plant will have more room for their roots.
Oliver is such a cutie. We often talk about how much he has changed since coming home. He babbles and coos and makes the cutest faces. He is learning to kiss. I am teaching him that. After just two days he is leaning his face into mine when I say kiss and pucker up my lips. It is so precious.
Nolan is an incredible little boy. He loves having Alex and Dennis as his big brothers. They do everything together. He also tends to follow around Paul and Jonny. Thankfully they don't mind much.
Here is Nolan taking a water break from playing outside in the little pool. His favorite thing to do is to get Ninja our black cat and walk him over and dump him into the swimming pool. Ninja immediately jumps out, shakes off, and runs back to his chair. Then Nolan goes and gets him and walks him back over the pool and drops Ninja in. As John and I watched this we were sure there would be a natural consequence but Ninja didn't seem to mind. And of course Nolan thought it was lots of fun!
This weekend Grandma and Grandpa came down to visit and meet their new grandkids. We celebrated Grandpa's birthday too by going out to dinner. The first Denny's we went to was having a car show and they couldn't seat us for over an hour. The next Denny's would have to split us up. The third Denny's had our table ready for us when we got there.
Here is Rachel enjoying a big burger-- her first in a long time. She is enjoyed it very much.
Annalyn loves to be goofy and make people laugh. Despite her silly face isn't she growing up to be a beautiful young lady?
Love this pic of Caleb and Dennis. Love love love it!
This was Nolan's first restaurant experience. He did really well and at like a champ!
Oliver loved eating spoonfuls of our whip cream off of our pancakes and hot chocolate. Alex did too! Yum!
Sveta and Anastasia shared a big nacho! Every time we go to Denny's two of our girls end up sharing a plate of these awesome nachos.
Anna with Grandma
The amazing grandparents
Radiant Galina showing off her smile!
Happy birthday Dad!
A few mornings ago I took tons of pictures of Oliver. Here is one of my favorites.
The kids's long time friend Joey came down to stay with us for a few days. It's nice that they get to hang out even though we live 5 hours apart.
Guess what? Caleb took the written test to get his driving permit this morning. He missed 0! How awesome is that? Pretty soon he will be accompanying John and I on all our errands so that he could get in his driving time. Rachel has been preparing to take driver's ed for sometime now. Finally she feels ready to take the plunge. She is taking driver's ed as one of her electives this semester and then she will do the online class. Up till now she just didn't feel ready to drive yet but after seeing how well Caleb did she is encouraged and excited and inspired to get her permit.
Love these smiles! Rachel was letting William make up names for her and that is why he is smiling so nicely for this picture. :) Whatever works.