Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Peach Picking

 Here's an old journal entry I found when we went to pick peaches this past spring in TX.

And just the day before we had gone up to an orchard in Fredricksburg to pick peaches. Afterward we went to Dairy Queen for lunch. As we were walking in an older man and his elderly mother were walking towards the door at the same time (the mother was struggling to be able to walk). I whispered to Joey and Kimball and asked if they'd like to hold the door open for them.  They both ran over and held the double doors for them.  Then, as we went up to the counter to get some ice cream, the elderly mother and her son were just leaving.  Joey saw them walking towards the door and quickly ran over to help them out.  The man smiled grateful and said to me, "That's one fine son you've got there mam." I completely agreed and couldn't help but tear up. I am so grateful to be the mother of such wonderful sons!

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

 We had a fun New Years with lots of yummy foods and cake pops from Joey's new 
cake pop maker
 We also had fun going out shooting in the desert

 and playing with sparklers in the backyard

 Another fun family adventure is taking the boys out to the desert and playing on all the dirt hills. A little stomping, a little riding, and a whole lot of fun.  The boys are so brave and conquered some pretty aesome hills!

 watching dad do the BIG hill

 Then the brave boys did their own BIG hill
 Peter catching some sweet air :)

 Kimball got a little support and help from Dad to conquer a steep decline

Wednesday, February 13, 2013


Here's one cute thing Joey said to me a couple months ago that I forgot to write:

Joey: Mom, do you ever feel embarrased because you're the only girl in our family?

Mom: No, why do you ask?

Joey: Because I feel embarrassed when I'm the only boy in a class with all girls.

It was just so cute and innocent.  Maybe that's another reason why he really wants a foster sister--so I won't have to be embarrassed being the only girl :)

Monday, February 11, 2013

Christmas in FLorida--Taylor Family Reunion

One great highlight was going to Legoland!  The boys loved it!  It is the perfect place for little boys!  We'll have to go back again soon.  The boys loved all the rides, the lego statues, and the mini towns, playing with all their Taylor cousins and grandma and grandpa, and especially loved using their Christmas money from Great Grandma and Grandpa Starkey to get their own Lego Set.

Lego Star Wars

Fun fire truck game

The boys loved driving their own Lego cars

I don't know why more amusement parks (Disney etc) don't do this--it's a kiddie corral :)  You have your kids play in their right next to the line while you wait.  When you get to the front, the kids just pop back in line with you. It makes everyone a whole lot happier.
The boys loved getting to ride with uncle David.


We unfortunately missed our dolphin watch on Christmas Eve because it was cancelled due to rain, but we stopped along the highway and let the boys play in a little sand and sea water for a while.  They had lots of fun walking through the mangrove trees, hopping over puddles, building beach creations and playing with the awesome horseshoe crab shell mom found. Dad even taught them how to skip rocks on the water.

The Santa on the airplane sitting along the highway.  Santa does not mess around in FL.  He takes a jet.

Grandma Taylor make her delicious sugar cookies and we all got to decorate. The best is putting on 3 inch thick layers of frosting and sprinkles!

Silly Nick and Kimball

The cousins all gave each other $ store presents after the cookies.

Earlier in the day, when we were debating about what to do once the dolphin watch was cancelled, we stopped to make plans.  Poor Rachel, who is some sort of strange magnet for this, got pooped on by a seagull on her neck.  Poor girl was furious.  Just glad Ken was able to capture this moment.
We then all went to Chick-Fil-A and make ourselves happy. I think Rachel just wanted to eat a bird :)  We were surprised how many people go out to eat on Christmas Eve.



Playing lots of tag outside to keep those little bodies busy

Cristmas morning--all the cousins getting ready to open presents.  The big hit was the car tracks from grandma.  All the kids connected them and one made big track all over the house.


Yummy brunch with eggs, bacon and scones with honey butter--ahhh, so good!

Then sweet grandma came and handed out her fun toys to all the kids.

Family Pics.  We had to bribe the kids with chocolate to get them all to cooperate.

The kids took a break to chase uncle nick. Nick scaled the tree to escape.

Funny Taylor Family

It took us many tries to get poor Kimball's hands out of his eyes.  He kept saying they were itchy


After Christmas dinner, the kids all sand some sweet songs for Great Grandma and Grandpa Starkey


Playing in the pool with you cousins in December--what could be better?


The only thing that could be better would be playing Mario Cart with Uncle David on the Wii.
But also on top of the fun list were Ash and Nick's Minute to Win it games.  It was hilarious.  We staked dice, ate oreos with our faces, kept balloons up in the air.

The best was the egg scoot using the banana belt.  The picture with Karen is by far my favorite of the whole trip.

Is Karen scooting or pooping, I'm not sure?  Rachel does look a little scared though :)

The final event to break the 3 way tie was filling up the cup with m&ms using your mouth.  There were m&ms everywhere, but it was so fun!  Thanks Ash and Nick for such a fun night!


We also spent a morning at Great G&G Starkey's house. We all had fun using the orange picker to get some yummy fruit off the trees.

I love that lady and her porch swing
Then we took a walk around Lake Menzie

Cohen, that duck picture is for you--You told me how beautiful it was so I took a picture so you could remember it ;)



  No alligators sighted, but lots of fun family time

Then back to G&G's for Popsicle and of course, Grandpa and his Hardies.  I love him.  Every time I see a Hardies I think if him and his daily trips.  It's amazing he's so healthy at 91 eating that food everyday :)

Then of course, to top it all off, a little trip to Davidson's of Dundee to get some candy, see how it's made, and test out those free samples.  They always have to restock those samples after we leave.
Thansk to Ash and Nick for the tag playing

After everyone got sick with vomiting and left fro home, we stayed one more day down in Clear Water. We loved the movie Dolphin Tale and were so excited to meet the real Winter at the Clear water aquarium!

Here is Panama--a spunky "old lady."  She was 41 and doing lots of fun tricks. Most dolphins don't live past 40 so she is doing great.

The fun storks that have been in Dolphin Tale and Nims Island.  It was fun to meet movie starts :)
Panama popping the bubbles

The devise created to save sea turtles from the fishers nets...they made a way for them to escape.

Petting sting Rays and hugging turtles

Joey loved watching the sharks in the shark feeding

It was really amazing to see winter's stub.  The lower portion of her tail was amputated after she got caught in a fishing net.  She showed us her stub, then waited as her prosthetic tail was put on, then swam around.  You need to watch the movie to appreciate it, but it was so amazing to see her in person!

We then took a trolley ride to the new aquarium

We played games, went through the hurricane simulation house, made a picture for winter, and teh got a boat ride back to the original aquarium.

Such a fun day.  We past a Rita's on the way to the hotel and had to stop and get a snack.  That place is amazing!

We left mid-day to fly back to AZ, so we had to make one last pit stop at the beach before we left.  We are all beach-a-holics.  There is just something so amazing about being near the ocean.

It was low-tide so the boys had lots of fun collecting tons of dead crabs :)

Peter found a sea bugger. At least he said it was from the sea ;)

We stopped by our friends house who we gave our sweet dog Kiki to. It was hard for all of us to see her.  We missed her a lot.  Poor Joey had the hardest time leaving her. We had to stop by Walgreen's and told him he could pick out whatever candy he wanted to get his mind off of it.  He got some good clearance Christmas candy.  Poor kid.  Once we stop moving and renting our dwelling we can get a dog again.

One other thing we did to escape the sickness was take the boys kayacking. It was fun paddling all over and feeling surges of adrenaline wondering if those bumps on the water a head were lily pads or alligator backs.  Luckily there were no scary encounters.

 We got to watch this awesome plane land and take off on the water.  I had never seen that in real life before.  Very amazing.

We love Florida and can't wait to go back again!