Thursday, November 18, 2010

Home, sweet home

Our home, complete with a rainbow. Jake's on the right.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Happy Birthday Jake!

Jake turns 4 years old today, and we're going to have a big party with most of the family. Cooking out hamburgers, cake, homemade ice cream.

Jake's now been with us longer than he's been without us. We've been so blessed with our little man.

Happy Birthday Jake! We love you!

Here Jake and his good buddy pose with some of his presents.

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Oct. 5, 2008

Two years ago, in the Bell Tower Hotel in Xi'an, China, we received a knock on our door. We opened it to see our guide, Kelly, two men, a woman and a little boy we only knew from photographs, a medical report and a couple of updates.

He started crying when he saw us, but he calmed down some when his ayi picked him up and carried him into our room and our lives.

When she handed him to Violet, he started crying again. As we all know, there have been more tears in these past two years, as well as lots of laughs and good memories. It's been a fun and wild ride watching Jake grow.

That's Jake playing with his friend Marossie at a recent Moon Festival gathering for all the families in our area.

We wouldn't trade these past two years for anything in the world.


Friday, August 6, 2010

Vacation Bible school ... great time was had by all ...

We serve an awesome God! Jake spent the week with good friends, making new friends and learning all about Jesus while having fun creating and snacking!
VBS wrapped up tonight with a program (he did great! singing and signing) and a cookout (not so great as two jumbo hot dogs rolled off his plate :(
I was blessed as a "craft lady" this year and helped in that mission.
What a wonderful fellowship. Hopefully I can post photos soon. I was too busy craft nights, and we forgot our camera tonight. Oh well, we figured as nerd parents we needed to tone down the filming a bit, but in reality I'm kicking myself for not having video!
Ginger from our church was taking lots of photos throughout the week, though.
Kevin's parents came and my mom did too!
Truly a great time was had by all.


Wednesday, July 21, 2010

On a safari

We're baaaaaaack!

The day after Jake was ring bearer at cousin Bobby's wedding in June we headed over to Gentry, Ark., and a drive-through animal park.
You aren't supposed to feed the animals, but you know how that goes ... LOL. Obviously, though, we weren't the only ones who have violated that rule because the animals all expected some food.

Before we went on the drive-through part, we walked around and saw some other things.

Jake petted a python.

And a wolf pup.

And, Jake and Mommy rode a camel.

They had dozens of emus. They were persistent and hungry.

Joe Cool poses with a camel.

Jake took his turn at driving!

These prairie dogs were cute.

All was going well until we met this fellow.

He seemed friendly enough. He ate some of the fruit bars we gave him. First Daddy fed him. Then he went over to the other side of the car where Jake and Mommy fed him.

Then, when Jake bent down to get another piece of food, the monkey reached in and pulled Jake's hair. That startled Jake and he started crying, which upset mom and dad. At first Jake said the monkey hit him. Then, once we got him calmed down, he said the monkey pulled his hair. He finally got some smiles from Jake again when we said we would drive around again and get the monkey back by pulling his tail. The monkey must have known something was up, because he wouldn't come close to the car again. So, our revenge became we waved food at him then rolled up the window and laughed! Take that monkey!

After the drive, we went through the petting zoo part of the place.

Jake got to meet a couple of baby goats.

He also fed and petted a kangaroo.

Then he rode on a gorilla's back. OK, so it wasn't a real gorilla.

Saturday, June 26, 2010

Gonna get married ...

Jake got to be ringbearer at his cousin Bobby's wedding. We wondered how he would do, and he did really well. He got a little fidgety during the ceremony, but he's only 3 1/2 after all. Nothing his other cousin Matt, the best man, couldn't handle.

Here's the ringbearer stylin' before the ceremony. How cute is this?

Before we were so presentable, though, we had to get dressed.

Posing with a cool drink.

Posing with the groom's men beforehand.

The happy couple, Bobby and Klarissa. Congratulations you two!

Taking pics at the reception. Jake loves to take pictures. He filled up at least four of the disposable cameras set out on the tables to get photos at the reception. No word yet on if they turned out.

The night before, before the rehearsal and dinner, Jake tried his hand at ping pong and foosball for the first time. He may be a better foosball player, though.

The day after the wedding, before we came home, we went to a drive-through wildlife preserve. More on that later.

Friday, June 25, 2010

Father's Day on the road

I realized the other day with the family gone to a wedding over Father's Day weekend we never posted.
Jake got to wake Daddy with a "Happy Father's Day," and though they both tried to catch some more shut-eye, Jake soon got excited about Daddy's gifts.
But first there were the cards:

Jake made a homemade card for Daddy after discarding the first attempt because it was not good enough. You're on front Daddy, this is me:

Then it was on to the store bought card. I picked it out myself:

Yeah, I picked this one out, too. I had a little trouble deciding:

Jake's a little excited over Daddy's beef jerky:

Last year, for Kevin's first Father's Day with Jake home, I started what I guess will become a tradition — a photo of Daddy and Jake and Jake's handprint. It is awesome to see how those hands are growing:

Two years ago a verge of a dream. Today, a reality — father and son:

Happy Father's Day Daddy.

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Busy summer, part III

We went June 6 to a family reunion in eastern Oklahoma for a branch of Kevin's mom's family.
In addition to spending time with family, it was a day of firsts for Jake: his first ride on a big boy bike and his first boat ride.

Aunt Debbie got him the bike and he had a blast riding it once we got the training wheels on properly.

Then Jake made some music

Then we went out on the lake for a ride around on a pontoon boat. Everyone had a great time.

Cap'n Daddy was at the helm

Jake and Mommy enjoyed the ride

Jake had to look at the water while we went along. Uncle John was right there to make sure he was OK

Mommy had fun

A boat, water to ride on, water to drink. What could be better?

Jake had to take his turn at being captain, too

Coming up: The summer fun continues. Cousin Bobby got married and Jake was the ring bearer.

Saturday, June 12, 2010

Busy summer, part II

Jake has been taking swimming lessons at Denny Price Family YMCA. With kids this young, they are just getting them familiar with the water, getting them comforable with being in it and showing them some of the basic things they need to know.

As the lessons continue, they will get more into the actual learning to swim. We only were allowed in on the first day, so we snapped some photos. The rest of the time, we have to sit in the waiting room and catch glimpses of what we can. Jake is having a lot of fun, so far he hasn't cried or refused to do anything the instructor says.

Waiting his turn

Getting ready to dunk his head under water

Face in the water

Floating on his back

Jumping in

Silly grin after the first lesson

Busy summer, trying to catch up ...

... and still not caught up.

Sorry it's been so long since we updated the blog. It's been pretty busy for us this summer.

The last pictures we posted of Jake seeing the buffalo at the Tallgrass Prairie Reserve were taken on our way to Joplin, Mo., for our nephew's and Jake's cousin's graduation from college.

The night before the commencement ceremony Jake had his first really big pillow fight. Here he is taking on cousin Bobby, the soon-to-be graduate.

Here Jake poses with Bobby, who just graduated from Ozark Christian College and is ready to embark on a career in the ministry. He's already been pastor of a church in Adair, Okla., while he was going to school.

And, we will be heading back to eastern Oklahoma this coming weekend for Bobby's wedding. Here he is with his bride-to-be, Klarissa.

Jake also got to go to his first birthday party. A girl from pre-school had a party at the local miniature golf course. This was Jake's first time and he had a blast. He also go to eat cake.

Stay tuned for more. We went to a family reunion last weekend and Jake took his first boat ride. And, Jake has been taking swim lessons. More good times.