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Sunday, October 26, 2014

Kempton's Birthday

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This birthday update is well over a month old, but it kind of worked out because we recently went to Kempton's parent/teacher conference so I have lots of wonderful things to report about him.  Things I don't want to forget and hopefully someday he will read when I finally get around to updating our family albums from this blog.  After all, that's the entire purpose behind the family part of this blog.  I figure as long as I update this blog I can go back at anytime and create albums.
 And I digress...

Sometimes as parents we feel like we are failing.  We didn't feel this way with our first two children, we definitely felt more in control.  But as we've had more children and they have gotten older, this feeling of failure creeps up every now and again.  I wonder if these feelings are more prevalent as a parent who doesn't work outside the home because this is my I had better have good results dangit!  It's a ridiculous thought I know, but kind of makes (no) sense (at all).
And again, I digress...

For me, going to parent/teacher conferences is a self-esteem boost.  I feel rejuvenated as a Mother, that maybe by chance I'm doing something positive and right for my children.  Since becoming parents, my husband is able to receive self-esteem boosts outside the home, accolades in his career, etc.  I feel blessed to not have to work and completely fulfilled, but it's sometimes nice to get a pat on the back for my efforts from an objective person.  Each of our children's teachers are so complimentary of them and I feel proud, as compared to other feelings that I may have when no one is listening to me, or when our home is chaotic!

Kempton's teacher told us that he is a leader in his class, that all of his peers look up to him.  He is testing in the 99% for both Language and Math, this has been the case since Kindergarten.  He is  very intelligent, but is still humble about his abilities to the point that his peers do not know.  He doesn't lack social awareness or organizational skills, which can many times be the case in high achieving children.  He is thoughtful and aware of others.  He is in the highest small group for reading and math, but his teacher told me that her and the other teachers are going to start working with just him individually, to make sure he is being challenged, and because they themselves are up for the challenge. I asked his teacher if she thinks he gets bored and she said no, that he doesn't misbehave or daydream if the subject is too easy.  But they just want to make sure his needs are met.  Can I just say that I love where we live?  I'm not sure he would be getting this kind of special treatment anywhere else.  

At home, we can always count on Kempton.  He is never deviant or disrespectful to us (other than lots of potty talk haha), and never intentionally mean to his sisters.  He is unassuming and never attention-getting or showy.  I think that's my favorite thing about him, something that makes him everybody's favorite.  He is always done with his chores first and they are done to a high standard, and first out the door to school.  He is very responsible with his baby sister and keeps her safe.  He wants to do what is right and doesn't like to break rules.  He enjoys reading, riding all over with his bike with gears, is fascinated by the rules of football (and loves to play center because there is not much risk involved), and is obsessed with 4 or 9-square at recess.  He still enjoys his motor bike but is too big for it now.

Because we wanted the focus of his eighth birthday to be on his baptism, he just had a tiny little party.  Dad took him and his two best buds to Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, and they ate Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle pizza with candles in it!

Let me tell you, this kid is hard to shop for when his birthday or Christmas comes around.  Most kids I know have a long list of things they want.  He never does.  We will ask him and he will "hum and haw" just to try and think of something.  If there is something he thinks is cool, it is usually outside of the realm of what you would assume for a child.  Luckily, his grandparents know this about him and their presents are always a hit!

Gran and Grandpa Peterson gave him the first pet in the house, a tree frog.  This was a huge hit.  He is very responsible about cleaning the aquarium, turning the light on and off, and feeding Goliath the frog.

His birthday was the first of the school year, I brought in root beer floats.

Just like his mother, he is not a cake fan, but loves and requested angel food cake!


Friday, October 10, 2014

Great to be Eight

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We had a special event take place the beginning of September.  It's hard to believe our little guy turned eight, seems just like yesterday that his big sister was baptized.  

Kempton has a really strong hold of Gospel principles, and an understanding of doctrine.  He always wants to do what's right (helps that he is a "rule follower" and doesn't like to "scribble outside the lines").  He has a tender heart and is humble and teachable.  He was ready to be baptized.  

I am trying to increase my photography skills so that I can capture my own kids in memorable moments.  Kempton was a good sport and very patient with his mother when we ventured out one evening just him and I to take these pictures.  I took way too long, but I think we got some good ones of him and his personality!

 And then came the big day.  Kempton had a lot of support from family and friends. 
 He must really be loved!  

His wonderful grandparents wouldn't miss it for the world (Grandpa Peterson got on a plane just one week post major abdominal surgery)!

 Such a sweet picture of his cousin/buddy Joey and him.  

He's beaming before the big event!  It was a wonderful day filled with the Spirit and the support from our loved ones. 

And here's is Kempton's slide show:

Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Back to School

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We had a great summer, we didn't leave town hardly at all, did a lot of staying in the area, but it was fine by me in my pregnant state.  We did have a lot of visitors, which was so great. The last two weeks of summer break, we could all feel that it was time to go back to school.  Perfect timing!

Averie is obviously growing up.  I love to see her come into her own. 
4th grade

 Kempton was obviously happy to start school.
2nd Grade

 Brenna had the hardest time waking up the first day of school.  Too many late nights all summer!  Her hair was so beautiful this morning.

My cute kids!

Mr. D and Mrs. Howard again! Yay!

So grateful for good friends!

I love the new school year. 
It's like a fresh start, new beginning, time to set goals, and strive to do better. 

Estes Park Family Reunion

Pin It The highlight and main vacation this summer was our family reunion to Estes Park.  This has been years in the making, with lots of preparation for the Wyoming families.  Our last reunion was about 10 years ago, in Hawaii.  This time, family traveled from all over the country to make it to Colorado.  You see, Cale's family is rich in heritage and culture, his Dad was born and raised in New Zealand.  His grandparents were some of the first people to join the LDS church in the town he was from.  It is inspiring to see the impact that two people's decision to join the gospel of Jesus Christ has had on several generations, with now well over 130 people!  Most of whom are strong and faithful members of the church.  I am sure Grandpa and Grandma are up in Heaven delighting in their posterity, it was a wonderful site to see, especially as someone who married into this amazing heritage and family.

Here we all are.  There's so many of us that we have pinheads:

The mint green ones:

The originals

Now for the fun part:
 pre-reunion fun with grandpa

 opening social

 Layla and Brenna standing so official

Hanging outside our rooms 

The observation center, where I observed much of the action.   

The observation log 

 Kempton was in Heaven with all the board and card games


 They call these their old lady faces

 Too much for this two-year-old.  Her and I napped on the other days, thankfully.

more old lady faces 

The craft cabin with the girls (while the able-bodied people were playing hours and hours of flag football!)

 And last but not least, the traditional New Zealand haka.  They get really into it.  

We were sad to see it end.

Summer and Jared's family stayed with us before and after the reunion, which was a bonus to the fun.  Our kids swapped cars the entire time.  So much fun with cousins!  

On our way home, we stopped by Mile High to see the Broncos scrimmage.  

  A final stop to Ikea was icing on the cake!