Monday, July 16, 2012

Taylor turns 9!!

Taylor turned 9 on April 4th! We love Taylor's smile and the way she is always jumping, twisting and flipping around the house! She is a bundle of energy and we had fun celebrating her birthday!

Taylor is always cold! Here she is on a warm spring day planting the garden with daddy in her jeans and jacket! :) She is pretty proud of her part of the garden this year! She did a lot of work!

Here she and I are after a mommy daughter date in May. We have crazy hair here, but you can't really see it! I love how Taylor will curl up in a ball on my lap and just cuddle! She always gives the sweetest kisses and hugs and will often just say, "Mommy, I love you!"

I have tons and TONS of pictures of Taylor with her sisters, but I'll save those for posts that they will better belong in!
Taylor and her sisters always have so much fun together! They are usually the best of friends and I LOVE that!

We had some of Taylor's friends over for a little bit of a birthday/Easter party! I always love seeing her arm in arm with her friends, or giggling with them! She has always had a wonderful group of friends!

We also had a birthday party with her cousin Boston. He is just 4 days older!

Happy birthday Taylor! (3 months late) :) We love you! You are such a sweet little peacemaker and friend to everyone! Keep Smiling! :)

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Solo Piano Festival

On March 3rd the girls had their solo piano festival. I didn't get the greatest pictures or videos. In fact I was just enjoying watching that I forgot to video tape until half way through one of Kaylee's songs. So here is a picture of each and a video of 1 of their 2 songs. I sure love being able to teach my girls. They scored very well and were beautiful up there! :)

Sunday, July 8, 2012

Gardner Reunion 2012

I'm still a couple of months behind on blogging, but I have had so much fun looking at these pictures that I want to get them posted right away. I'll catch up on other things eventually.

We just got back from camping up near Kemmerer, WY at the Hams Fork Campground. We had Matt's parents and 7 of his 8 siblings there with all of their families. That is 14 adults and 26 kids ages 16 and under (plus 2 babies on the way). We were just missing 3 adults and 3 more kiddos. Hey...I think that means our baby will be the 30th grandchild! How exciting!!

We left Tuesday evening just as this fire was starting northeast of us. So many fires. How do you hope for tons of rain when you are about to head out camping? ;) Though the kids (and their shoes) were soaked...we were still grateful for the rain!

We also passed this guy as we got closer to the campground.

We got up there kinda late Tuesday night, got set up, and enjoyed some campfire time with family from Rexburg, Houston, Cheyenne, Rawlins, Casper, Fort Collins and Kemmerer. We are all spread out now so it was great to all be together.

We had such a great time from start to finish! It was absolutely amazing to see how well the kids played and entertained and got along. The last night there we were sitting around the fire talking about our favorite parts of camping and although playing cards with my mother-in-law might be right close to the top :) watching my kids with their cousins...especially their older cousins...has to be at the very top of my list! I had even worried and prepped my kids for the fact that their cousins were growing up and may or may not play with them as much, but boy was I wrong!! I LOVE my nieces and nephews! Every time I turned around they had one of my kids on their lap or they were dancing, or singing, or holding their hands. My kids had the greatest time and it was all because they have the greatest cousins EVER!!

(wish I had a picture with ALL of the cousins...this was just the hikers)

Wednesday we woke up and some went to get the horses while most of us went on the hike to what we call the crooked tree. (as seen in the picture above and many pictures below) There has to be a better name for this amazing tree that has so much meaning to it! Maybe the Celestial tree! I don't know. But every time we come to this camp ground we visit this tree and talk about what must've happened to it. Did another tree land on it causing it to find another way to continue to "arise"? What trials and adversity did it have to work it's way around in order to "arise and shine forth"?

We love this tree and I have had fun looking back at pictures from to see how much the kids have grown. This is a very special tradition. Click HERE to see some pictures from back in 2008. The ones below were from this year's trip.

The kids had fun on our little hike and at the end of the trail we met up with the horses. Grandpa has his one horse Bud and then we borrow Ranger and Captain from time to time too. The kids REALLY look forward to this. Kaylee is dying to go on an overnighter with her Dad and Grandpa sometime soon! We are so thankful to Grandpa for taking the time to lead the kids around and around. They sure love it!

(Brace Face...much like Flat Stanley...for the girls' orthodontist's office!)

Thomas Jay was pretty lucky to get a few extra rides in with his cousin Cole! :) He loved every minute of it! :)

I thought this video would be cute to will be fun to see years from now! :)

After our hike and some time with the horses we had lunch and packed up for Lake Viva Naughton! Uncle Glade had a wave runner that the kids had fun on and it just felt good to get in the water and cool off a little bit!

Wish I could've ridden with this hottie! :) Wish I could've ridden the horses too! Thought I'd better stay on the ground though instead of risk labor an hour away from civilization! :)

It's a good thing we did our hike and lake trip on Wednesday because Thursday it rained on us quite a bit. We were still able to play games and enjoy being outside. Some played mountain man golf (check out the score card!).

The kids rode the go-cart.

Some did a longer horse ride and everyone found something to do and someone to play with. Lots of games were played at ALL hours of the day. (or night) :)

Friday was pretty laid back. Matt went on a longer horse ride with his Dad and sister on this day. That is definitely one of his favorite things to do.

We packed up early Saturday and were on our way out. We got home later that afternoon and it is HOT!! I know I definitely enjoyed the cooler air in the Wyoming mountains! We got cleaned up and kinda crashed! We were almost content to stay in doors and just relax, 'till we remembered we saved a ton of money from not having to pay for the campsite (no host or water) we took our extra money to Wingers!! :)

We sure loved being with family! I have been thinking about Matt's parents so much today and how much I love them and the relationship I...we...the kids...all of us have with them. They do so much for us! We miss everyone! We always wish we lived closer! Thanks to everyone for such a perfect week away! Love you all! :)

One last dance and good-bye hug!