Random pics

When I was pregnant and we would read, the boys couldn't sit on my lap very well, so they usually sat on either side of me. Now, Avery still gets the middle seat. She doesn't always want to sit as long as the boys though.

Drake was quite proud of this structure he built by himself.
He enjoys building things up almost as much as he enjoys knocking things down.

I went to check on Graham one morning after Drake had already come out of their room, and I found just his head sticking our from under his bed. I really should find the bolts for the bed's side rail so he doesn't keep falling out.


Drake's FHE Lesson

Last Monday, Drake was in charge of the lesson for Family Home Evening. Usually we help him prepare and present, but that night, he insisted on doing it "all by myself". So Shad helped him pick the topic of prayer, and we left the rest up to him. He sat and just talked about prayer for about a minute. I grabbed the camera to videotape him after he'd already started--unfortunately, what I saw in the viewfinder was much brighter than what was actually videotaped, so you can't see him very well -- all you can really see is Graham climbing all over Drake while he's trying to give his lesson. It's really quiet too, so you may have to turn your volume up high to hear him. He concludes his lesson by just saying, "Thanks."

For the activity, we put together a rocker for our back porch. The boys had a good time with that. I'm excited to have a place outside to sit and rock Avery during the nice summer evenings.


Avery's 2-week check-up

Monday, the 16th, Avery had her 2-week check-up with the doctor. Avery left the hospital weighing 8 lbs. 9 oz (I think). By the 2-week check-up, she's supposed to be back up to her birth weight (9 lbs. 2 oz.). Well, our sweet little chunker weighed in at 9 lbs. 12 oz., so I guess she's getting plenty to eat! She still sleeps pretty good, but does stay awake for much longer periods of time. It's fun having her here. She's a sweetheart. Already she's like Drake in that she loves to hold her head up and look around when we're holding her upright. But she's like Graham in that she'll actually cuddle with us some of the time. It'll be fun to see her grow and develop even more.

Sweet Avery.

I think she's going to have blue eyes, but time will tell.

Grandma Johnson getting to know Avery.

Brett holding Avery (the last several times he's been to our place, he's been messy and dusty from working on our basement, so he didn't get much "hold time" with Avery).

Avery's excited (if I know my daughter) to meet her Grandpa Dyer and any other relatives that may come out next weekend!

Johnson Family Reunion

Last weekend, Shad took the boys down to Salt Lake for the annual Johnson Family Reunion. I stayed home with Avery to try and catch up on sleep and chores. The reunion was on Saturday, and I think they had a really good time. It started at "This is the Place Heritage Park", where the boys got to ride ponies, make crafts, help water a garden, and several other things. Afterward, they had lunch, followed by pool time at a friend's house. I guess it took Drake a little while to warm up to being in water again, but then he had quite a bit of fun. Graham took a little longer to get used to the water, but still had fun. He ended up falling asleep while in the pool with Shad (if I remember correctly). After their fun in the sun, they ate dinner, visited for a while, then headed home.

Shad, Drake and Graham at a monument.

Some of the group riding a train.

Cowboy Drake.

Cowboy Graham.

Drake helping ease Shad's burden of pushing Graham.

They all had a really good time, and were pretty wiped out by the end of the day. I'm sad I missed it. I look forward to being able to go next year! :)


Drake's 4th Birthday

Our little man Drake turned the big 4 on June 2nd. Drake loves his birthday. Drake loves anyone's birthday. He insists that presents be opened first thing in the morning, no matter whose birthday it is. So he did that in the morning, and just had fun the rest of the day with Shad, Graham and "Nana". Drake is such a wonderful boy. He loves, loves, loves to talk. He's a great big brother and helper towards Graham, but also thinks it's great to get Graham to do things for him. Drake thoroughly enjoys being read to---or reading (he can read a few small words), and thrives on just playing, no matter what it is. He likes to play board games, build with blocks or lincoln logs, do his "homework" (complete worksheets about words or numbers), and play outside. He is such a wonderful little boy, and he keeps me on my toes with his energy and his curiousity. I'm grateful Drake is part of our family!

When Avery and I got home from the hospital on the night of Drake's birthday, him and Judy ("Nana") were making this cake. Drake probably had just as much fun, if not more, making his cake with Judy as he did eating it.

This is us singing "Happy Birthday" to Drake the night of his actual birthday.

Thursday, June 12th, Drake had his very first "friend" birthday party, and he was ecstatic! We served the kids pizza, jell-o jigglers and carrots for dinner.

My mom set up a treasure hunt. Drake loved it. He was very confident in where he thought the next clues were, even when he wasn't right.

They played "Duck, Duck, Goose!" for a while.

They also played "Red Light, Green Light". Graham just stood in the middle as an obstacle for the kids. After that game, Shad brought Gilbert (Drake's rabbit) to the front yard and let the kids run around with him for a while.

This was Drake's cake the night of his friend party. When he saw the car sitting on it, he took it off and informed me that cars don't go on cakes. I put it back on and tried to explain it was a decoration, but Drake wasn't convinced. When he showed his cake to one of his friends, he told her, "This is my cake, but the car isn't supposed to be on there."

Despite his qualm with the car, he kept it on long enough to blow out the candles.

It was nice to have my mom here to help out. My brother Matt even came down from Rexburg with his friend Kami (mostly to see my mom and Avery, but Drake didn't know that).

It was really fun to have a friend party for Drake and to see how excited he got about everything. Earlier that day, when he saw some of his friends, he kept asking them if they were coming. And during the party, he kept saying "Those presents are all mine." His little 4-year old self just thrived on having a party just for him. After everyone left, and we were sitting in the front room visiting, Drake snuck under the kitchen table to eat candy, after I'd told him he'd had enough. But how can you get upset with such a cute boy who only gets to celebrate his birthday once (or twice in this case) a year? We love you Drake!!


The first two weeks

I am definitely blessed. Avery is an angel, and has made my recovery from the birth quite nice. And Drake and Graham love her to pieces... so far. So these first two weeks as parents of three haven't been too bad. Shad's mom, Judy, spent the first week with us, and my mom, Diana, was here for this second week. Come Monday I'll actually have to wrestle three kids on my own! It'll be fun! On Avery's birthday, our friend Joan took the boys to church with her. Well, in Primary, the kids that were supposed to do the talk and the prayer that day weren't there. So they asked Drake to give the opening prayer. They were going to help him, but he told them he didn't need any help. So, he said his usual prayer, and then thanked Heavenly Father for his little sister. Drake is really sweet with her, and is always asking to hold her. Graham still likes to point at "baby", and is always wanting to touch her. I think Avery's lucky to have the two older brothers that she does.

Judy, a.k.a. Nana, holding sweet Avery.

Graham, Shad and Avery.

Drake and Graham picked out a toy for their sister before she was born and helped wrap it for her. They made a card to go with it, and one of the things Drake wanted it to say was, "We love you because you're almost here."

Avery also picked out (with mom's help) something for Drake and Graham. They thought that was pretty cool.

The boys admiring their gift from Avery.

Graham has had a harder time sleeping at nights the last few weeks, so we decided to move him out of the crib and into the toddler bed. He climbed in before I'd even finished making it. He's done pretty good with it since, and hasn't woken up as much at night.

Our local fire station has an Open House each year at the beginning of June, so Shad took the boys to that. Last year, it was on Drake's birthday, and it's the one thing he remembers most about his 3rd birthday, so we knew he'd like it again this year.

My boys.

Shad's parents have been instrumental in helping us get our basement finished (I'll post before and after pics when we're all done). This week, Shad's sister Amber came down one day with Shad's dad Brett. She helped watch the kids while Brett was working in the basement. Amber lives in Las Vegas, but was in town for a little while, so we're glad we got to see her.

Diana, a.k.a. Grammie, holding Avery.

Avery showing off her chubby cheeks.

More pictures to come ....


Avery Melissa Johnson is here!

She has finally arrived! Avery was born at 6:53 a.m. on Sunday, June 1, 2008. She weighed in at 9 lbs. 2 oz., measuring 21 inches long, and is just beautiful. If you want some details, keep reading... if you just want to see pictures, feel free to skip all the words.

I woke up around 3:45 a.m. Sunday morning to go to the bathroom, and was just laying awake in bed afterward when my water broke at 4:00 a.m.. I woke up Shad about fifteen minutes later, and for the next half hour or so, we got all our stuff together, got things put together for Drake and Graham, and cleaned up little things around the house. Around 5:00 a.m., we called our friend, Joan, to come over and be here when the boys woke up.

We got to the hospital around 5:30 a.m., and my doctor was already at the Labor and Delivery desk, just waiting for us (he was on call this weekend). They took their time getting me into a room, and it wasn't until shortly after 6:00 a.m. that they checked me for the first time. It got the nurse's attention when she discovered I was already 8 c.m. dilated! She immediately started getting all the stuff ready for the delivery.

My contractions remained fairly consistent for the next half-hour or so. Around 6:45ish, I got a really strong, extra-painful contraction. After two or three more intense contractions, I knew her arrival was just moments away. On the next contraction, and a few pushes later, our sweet little Avery was born, happy and healthy. It's always such a miraculous experience, and I feel very blessed to be able to bear children. And now I have a sweet little girl!

Just moments after she arrived, before getting her cleaned up.

Proud dad.

Shot of her chunky 9 lb. body and cute, dark hair.

Prettied up after a nice bath.

Proud dad again.

Graham was pretty excited about a baby.

We'll see what he thinks in a few more days, when she's still around.

Graham and Drake having fun on mom's hospital bed.

Drake couldn't stop saying "She's so cute. She's so cute..."

Nice shot of me in my gown and our three kids. Wow--three already!

Sweet kisses. Today, Drake was pointing out her "cute little fingers."

Sweet Avery sleeping in Daddy's arms.

Just another shot.

I shot this right before feeding her, so she'd actually be awake. She's a chunker.

I was trying to get a shot of her dark head of hair.

This is what she looks like most often--she definitely got her sleeping abilities from her dad!

I can't believe it's been almost 3 whole days since she's arrived. We're both doing well. I feel pretty good, and we have lots of help. Avery likes to sleep, so that makes it easier for me to get rest. Drake and Graham seem to be adjusting all right. Graham loves to point at Avery and say "Baby", and Drake likes to say how "cute" she is, and point out her "cute little" features. I just feel so blessed to have such a wonderful, caring husband, and now three precious, little children. Life is wonderful.