in the house

everyone dug into the taco bell lunch, a favorite for the kids.
poco got a few taco left-overs, we figured he would be right at home eating mexican food...
a glimse of the chaos with trying to fit nine people into our small living room!
the girls were so excited to play with the barbie stuff! aves later said 'i like that aunt diana had all those toys just for us!' um, sure, just for you...

bubba and i played with transformers, he took the big good guy, of course, and i got the little bad guy. can you guess who bubba though should win?

raise the roof

papa and timmy starting the shingles. why is it that we always seem to wait until its really cold out?!?
timmy preparing for the next batch of shingles.
bubba picking up all the shingle scraps that the guys threw down- got to keep the place clean, after all.
bubba was a bit cold, so i gave him my jacket. i dont think it quite fit right...

barbara's gifts

barbara had selected the bugs specifically for each of the kids:
aves got a green caterpillar that slumped up in the middle as it walked.
bubba got an orange caterpillar that wiggled its little legs when you let it run!

tweets got a blue lady bug that twirled around when you wound it up!

thank you so much, barbara! the kids loved them, and jill was really thankful and thought it was really cool that you would even think of them! (barbara's scoring brownie points, and its not even her family!)

outdoors indoors 3

another attraction at cabela's was the shooting range! you put in a few quarters and shoot at targets, when you hit one something happens, for example, if you shot at the rabbits, they would hop a couple times, shoot at the lantern and it blinked on and off. bubba was confused about what it was at first, but after tim showed him what to do, he took a liking to it immediately- and he's really good!
the kids and mema in front of the africa exhibit.
they even had a full aquarium in the store! all the kids were amazed at how big the fish were!

jill and tweets overlooking the huge store- it was almost too much to take in in the two hours we were there. i've got a feeling that we will be heading there again next time the kids come down!

outdoors indoors 2: penny crunch

ah, finally the two quarters and the penny i gave bubba comes into play! we were walking around and someone noticed this little machine in a corner. its a penny cruncher! i love these things and have collected them for several years. showing the kids what it can do excited them as well. i asked bubba if he had any money we could use to crunch, and it just so happened that he did! what luck! we put the money in and he loved watching it do its crunching thing, and out came a stretched penny with an imprinted deer on it!

someone else happened to have some extra change, so tweets got one too! i think we have a couple new penny cruncher collectors in the family now!

outdoors indoors 1

bubba loved looking around at all the animals. here he's checking out all deer and wolves they have in a special hunting gallery.
also in the deer hunting area was a hunter! as you walked up to him he spoke, talking about the different aspects of hunting. it was kind of creepy, but the kids seemed to enjoy it. oh, and there was a squirrel next to him, which bubba really thought was funny!
as one would expect, the girls liked the animals, but were more interested in shopping! tweets tried on a fun hat which her mom caved in and bought for her because she was just so cute in it!

they also had a section of animals from africa, here is bubba growling like the lion behind him! he loved to look at them, but was also a bit terrified of them...

get a room

tweets, myself, and aves just hanging out!
as usual, whenever i pull out my camera the girls want to take a turn with it too. this one is tweets' silly picture of mema! their grandma is so much fun!

papa wanted to lay down for a minute or two while we waited for everyone to be ready. needless to say, he certainly wasnt going to get too much rest...

taking a dip

aves just seems to be trying her best to stay afloat!
bubba, mid-air, as he shows off his cannon ball abilities!

teacher convention 09

the highlight of the convention this year was getting to see my old 7th grade english teacher mrs. jager! she was always my favorite teacher, my friends and i were always misbehaving in her class, but she seemed to have so much fun with us! she is retired now, but still helps out at the convention. i think what surprised me the most was the fact that she remembered everything about me- she even asked how my old friends from 7th grade are doing! wow, i hope i can remember all that after i've been teaching as long as she had!
outside the centery center, heading in for another day of professional development!
the conference center itself is pretty cool, its got a huge area to sit and talk that overlooks the big river in south bend.

ladies day

diana and her favorite sister barbara.
the sisters allen, so happy to be together!
mom gets in on the picture taking fun!

poco found a new friend in gramma!

sunday dog day

the kids being brave enough to actually touch poco! as you can see, poco isn't even all that interested in the whole tramatic thing.
relaxing after dinner with the kids.
bubba and jill on the couch.

before the kids leave mema and papa's house they always get a little treat. for some reason aves thought it would be best to put her treat inside her socks...

make a steak 1

mom and papa at the grill getting ready to put the meat on.
timmy doing his grill master thing!

going back to get mom and diana's steaks just right.

orchard hay ride 2

the girls in the pumpkin boxes!
diana and i took a little walk into the orchard ourselves for a minute, it was really beautiful. and so is she!

the apple orchard from the entrance.

orchard hay ride 1

tweets, mema, bubba, jill, aves, and tim waiting in line for the hay ride. papa gave bubba his coat so that he wouldnt freeze on the ride. the jacket may be a bit large...
the girls were ready for the ride, but werent quite so sure about petting the horses.
up the steps, finding a good place to sit.

looks like they found a good view to enjoy the hay ride from- bundle up, its going to be a cold one!

autumn orchard 2

they say you should clean off the table after you are done eating...
the kids watch as they make fresh apple cider.
the apple pulp gets put into the squeezin' machine!

the traditional photo by the giant apple out front of robinettes. you cant really come here without getting a photo of the apple, right?