Wednesday, October 19, 2016

Elias' Birthday Interview

How cute is this kid?!!
Here is his standard picture in the leaves. As an October birthday, we take one of these every year.
The many faces of Elias Johnson: stormy eyes.
Super smiley face.
The smile has taken over his face and has seized control of his eyes.
Band photo.
He knows what you did...and he's not happy about it.
Silly face.
Super silly face (the silly spread to his arms).
This kid is funny! Are you ready for the birthday interview? Here it is!

Elias: Age 6

What is your favorite color? orange
Who is your best friend? no one in this family... Annabelle
What is your favorite TV show/movie? Dinosaur Train/Disney Planes 2
What is your favorite thing to do outdoors? play in the snow
What is your favorite thing to do indoors? help make food
What is your favorite game? Mix-up
What is your favorite thing to wear? my 6 shirt!
Where would you want to go on vacation? Grandpa and Grandma J's
What do you like most about your siblings? Addilyn - when she is nice
Asher - playing football with him
Albert - when he rides the Trail-a-bike
Now that you're six, what would you like to learn/know? how to bake
What do you want to be when you grow up? fireman, race driver, policeman...also he wants to hug Momma
What is your favorite toy? my new bike...I feel so tall!
What do you sleep with at night? Rawr, Seal, small blue (blanket), my fire blanket, my big pillow (with Lightning and stuff)
What is your favorite thing to do as a family? go on a bike ride
What is your favorite art project? I don't have one
What is your favorite subject in school? P.E.!!
What is your favorite cereal? Cookie Crisp (this year's birthday cereal) 
What is your favorite lunch? Peanut butter and jelly and applesauce
What is your favorite dinner? pizza
What is your favorite snack? marshmallows and chocolate chips and bananas and water...we haven't ever had it but I'd like it!
What is your favorite dessert? ice cream and brownies
What is your favorite drink? fruit punch
What is your favorite animal? polar bear
What is your favorite song? Amazing Grace
What is your favorite book? The Day the Crayons Quit
What is your favorite holiday? Christmas

If you'd like to compare this year's answers to previous years, check them out (2015, 2014, 2013).

Elias is 6!

Yesterday Elias turned 6! 
The night before his big day he got to help make the cupcakes he would share with his class. This kid loves to be in the kitchen and certainly enjoyed helping make some pumpkin cupcakes.
This is what happens when parents need to wrap a big gift late at night. There is some wrapping paper on the bottom there but we couldn't figure out how to disguise the top. Our answer: just throw some coats and towels on top. We knew Elias wouldn't care and we are beyond trying to impress anyone.
On his birthday morning, he got to start his day with his special birthday cereal. This year he got Cookie Crisp.
Unwrapping his big gift. Yay!
Look at that big, Star Wars bike and that happy face!
One more pose before Daddy takes it outside for the ride to school.
His first attempt at riding the new (and much bigger) bike. Will he make it?
He took off like a pro! Now off to school.
Daddy spent the day at the school as a part of the Watch D.O.G.S. program so he was able to eat lunch with the kids, play at recess and participate in the classroom party with Elias. Fun stuff!
After school it was time to bake yet another cake and then take his birthday pictures. Silly shot with Momma!
Skyping with the Smiths!
A bright orange 6.
Time to open the rest of the presents. Lego!
Reading a card together.
A Willie the Wildcat bobblehead!
For dinner he requested pizza. And what is pizza on your birthday without your birthday crown? Thanks to Mrs. Frederick (our favorite kindergarten teacher) for the birthday crown and sticker!
We finished the day with TaeKwonDo and sharing some 6-cake with our TaeKwonDo friends.
Yay for a super-fun 6th birthday!!!

Thursday, July 28, 2016

Vacation 2016: Day 9

This day we explored Yosemite. We started in the Visitor's Center to plan our day. The first hike we chose was to this waterfall.
The upper and lower falls together make this the tallest waterfall in North America. Pretty cool.
While we were wandering and hiking, the older three kids got to climb. Tyler took them on a little climb and they thoroughly enjoyed being able to scramble around.
After that adventure, the kids were a little hot so we headed back to our van for lunch.
After lunch, we got some more coffee and headed back over to the Visitor's Center to learn a little about how the granite formation of Yosemite were formed. Oooo, ahhh.
Then we took a walk through the meadow where we had a nice view of Half Dome.
Again with Half Dome.
After that, we walked to a beach along the river. It was a much longer walk than I had anticipated when I suggested it. We also planned on wading across the river there to get to our van. The river was too deep. So I left Tyler and the kids to play in the river while I took a long walk back to our van. Only one kid ended up drenched from falling in the river. We'll call it a win.
We stopped as we drove out of the valley to admire the view.
After that, we took yet another hike. This time we were going to see a grove of sequoias. Each of the kids found a walking stick for the hike.
After much, much walking we found a sequoia!
 This is a dead sequoia that someone long ago cut a tunnel through. This used to be a road so cars could drive through the tree.
After our very long walk down to the grove, we had a very long walk back up. The little boys weren't able to handle it so they were carried. Tyler even carried both for a bit.
And then we both carried one. It made for quite a workout.
So by the time we got back to our site for dinner, we were hungry! dogs over the fire never tasted so good!

Vacation 2016: Day 8

 We left our hotel, stopped for some groceries and coffee, and headed out toward Yosemite. Western Nevada is pretty sparce so we had to get creative with entertainment in the van. Albert was pretty good at staying busy.
 It was amazing how desolate our path was. Here we stopped at a diner/gas station in a tiny town. It was the best looking gas station we had seen in at least 100 miles. We bought everyone a a special treat along the way. Then we turned and ended up on the weirdest road I've seen. This stretch of highway was a bit like a rollercoaster. There were miles of these little hills; actually they were too small to be called hills but were bigger than bumps. Whatever you called them, they were interesting. We couldn't go highway speeds and you would have been nervous on them if you had a vehicle with a trailer. It was certainly an adventure!
We entered Yosemite from the east. We had to drive over a gorgeous mountain pass to get there and it was definitely worth it. It was also pretty great to go from 100 Degrees in Las Vegas to patches of snow at Tioga Pass.
 We drove from the east entrance to our campsite and saw the entire width of Yosemite in the process. Our campsite was pretty awesome. Check out this pinecone Addilyn found!
Once we got to our site, I worked on dinner and Tyler and the kids worked on setting up our tent.

 The first night in Yosemite we had burgers.
After dinner, we feasted on roasted marshmallows. Yum! 
Behind us is our campsite, complete with bear-proof container. Since Yosemite has bears, you are not supposed to leave food anywhere but in these bear-proof boxes. If you leave food in your cars, they might break in just to get it. Craziness!
The park rangers had just gone through and cleared all of the brush from the camp grounds so there was ample firewood around our site. Whenever we needed to get the fire going quickly, we would throw some of the pine brush on and it would smell like a pine tree air freshener for a while. Burn, burn!