our yard/field/dirt area

I still don't have our digital camera back from when we left it in Provo, so I'm gonna put up some pictures that were already on the computer, as well as some that I've been "forced" to take with my film camera (which I love, but it just costs more).

With as much time as Shad has spent inside, you'd think we might have neglected the outside. Well, we have. But not completely. Amazingly enough, we've been able to just barely keep up with our yard and our garden. I say "we", but I mean mostly Shad. I have helped out some, but usually the kids are louder than the yard. So here are some of the outside projects...

Drake and Graham, each with their own tools, love to help Shad. You can see all the tall weeds... those covered about half of our "future" backyard. The field grass/weeds out further, by the pasture, were taller than me.

This is Shad and Russell Johnson hauling a big pile of junk and dirt out of our backyard and into a dumpster, using Russell's tractor. Him and Joan were wonderful to help us out so much.

Their daughter, Holly, hanging out with the boys. Avery was asleep behind her in the swing. Because Holly was there to keep an eye on the kids, I was actually able to go weed in the garden for a while.

This is a 15-yard roll-off container, which I didn't think we'd fill. I was wrong. I guess we had a lot more junk back there than I realized, sadly enough.

This is Shad cutting down our weed field with our neighbor's trimmer. He's excited.

We're trying to trick our kids into thinking work is fun...

...it might be working.

Here's the used-to-be-overgrown part of our backyard after all the weeds were cut down.

Next summer we plan on doing more outdoors, since our basement soaked up our time this summer. Thanks again my sweet Shad!


the basement

I would have had this post up sooner, but I didn't have all the "after" shots, and I accidentally left our camera in Provo when we were down there a week and a half ago for graduation. So I finally just took some "After" pics tonight with our cell phone, so I could post this and be done with it. Once we get our camera back, there will be more posts of more recent stuff.

So we're still not completely done fixing up the basement, but done with the big things, and done enough that I can post before and after pics and give you a good idea of what's transpired over the course of the summer. Shad has been wonderful in all the time he has spent working on our basement. And we couldn't have done it without good friends and Shad's dad Brett--he not only did a TON of the work, but he's fast too! Thanks again!

So now for the pictures.

These are the stairs from the kitchen which lead down to our basement.




Once you get down the stairs, you can turn left or right. Turning left takes you to the bathroom and the existing bedroom.

Bathroom Before
(under the dirty mats was a big hole in the gross, uneven concrete)

(Shad put in the new sink and tile floor--he does good work!)

More before.

More after.

Just past the bathroom is the bedroom.


This is an "after painted, before carpet" shot, but it shows the new egressed window better.

Before again.


Drake still says he liked the "blue room" better.

If you turn right at the bottom of the stairs, you walk into what was once a big, long family room. We put up a wall and added a second bedroom downstairs.

North Side Before.

North Side During.

North Side After.

South Side Before.

South Side During.

South Side After.

And finally, the new bedroom (added on the North Side)

I can't tell you how nice it is to finally have it done. Thanks Shad. Before we started working on the basement, Drake and Graham would not go downstairs by themselves---Shad or I had to be with them or they were too scared. Now that it's actually a nice place to be, they go down by themselves all the time. Thanks Shad and Brett and everyone else who helped throughout the process.

And a special thanks to our three "bumpkins" who were so patient and "helpful" during it all.


Our little Aves

Avery had the wonderful experience yesterday of the 2-month well-child check-up; she received three shots in her legs as well as an oral vaccine. She cried at the onset of the shots, but just a few seconds later, she was just smiling and happy again.

So here are the stats: our cute little porker weighs in at 14 lbs. 4 oz and measures 23 1/2 inches long. That puts her in the 90-something percentile for height, and outside the rainbow (more than the 90s) for weight. I wouldn't expect any less from our sweet chunker. :)

Love you Avers!


Pioneer Day Parade and Family Reunion

Drake loves parades. Graham enjoys them. Avery could care less. But we all go because it's fun to see the entries, and fun for Drake to get candy (since he never gets candy at home...). Here's just a few pictures from the parade.

Our ward's float... well, half of it.

Our next door neighbor and his youngest daughter.

Indian chief and a cool statue.

Pretty horses.

Don't-know-how-he-got-in-there guy and his car.

Drake's load by the end--at least ten times what he got at the 4th of July parade.

After the parade, we went straight up to Rexburg for the Jones Family Reunion. This is the same reunion where Drake fell in the mud real good, but I wanted to put up a few more pics.

The kids all fell asleep on the drive up.
Sweet Drake holding Avery's hand as they're both falling asleep in the car.

My "too-late" attempt to get a picture of Shad's grandmother with all of her siblings and cousins that were there.

Shad, high up in a tree, retrieving a pair of tennis balls that go to a game.

Arriving home after a long day.

The things we put our kids through. Besides the mud fall, Drake had a good time. Graham liked eating the watermelon and following Drake around. Avery took a bottle for the first time, which was good because Shad and I went to the temple after the reunion, and we wanted to make sure she'd take a bottle in case she got hungry. If I get around to posting again soon, you'll get to see pictures of the updates we've done in our basement thus far.