Sunday, June 29, 2014

Happy Birthday, Jake!

Next up was Jake's birthday, just 10 days after mine! Jake went to work in the morning, but we had some special fun in the afternoon and evening. (Thanks a ton to Tee Ross for babysitting a couple of hours!!)

Thanks to my family's visit the week prior, I had a few little gifts from the US.

Mainly, there were gifts from Maine with the lovely fragrance - Jake's favorite - of balsam fir. A pillow, incense sticks, candle, oil...

Jake lighting the incense of the little cabin - so cool to watch the smoke curl out of the roof!
Another little gift was a shirt for/from Sophia that announces:
"The handsome guy at my side is my father" 

She loves her daddy!!
The cake was a Samoa Cheesecake (like the flavor of the girl scout cookies). Jake chose the recipe out of a list of 20 cheesecakes, and it just so happened that there were several tasks the boys could help with, such as crushing different types of cookies and beating the batter. We had a happy time that morning in the kitchen!

Lighting all the candles, which turned out more to be like spitting sparklers!!
It's a wonder we even made it to the table without dropping it, as we got stinging sparks from the candles, ha!


Happy Birthday!!!
Most of the pictures from this evening are blurry, due to my little (and very excited) photographers, but a few did turn out clearly. :)


Saturday, June 28, 2014

First of the birthday posts!

I have the first Beaty birthday of the year, kicking off our birthday season! Between May 24 and August 23, we celebrate 5 of our 6 birthdays. With all the busyness and travel, I can just now get caught up with 3 of those on the blog.

On the very day of my birthday I got special visitors from Tennessee!! My Mom arrived (already her second visit this year and third within 8 months) and sister Heather. This is just her second time in recent years, the last time being 18 months prior for my wedding.

Now she was meeting her first niece for the first time!!!

Sophia was underwhelmed at the sudden attention from strangers :)

Waiting in the car at the clinic (that's medical volunteer Elizabeth in the background)
(On the way to their hotel from the airport I had to swing by and check on Casa de Amor's "heart baby", operated on the day prior, during afternoon visiting hours.)
Putting our big truck to good use!

Back at the hotel, Mom couldn't wait to start dishing out the gifts and surprises!
(Yeah for the homeschooling book!!)

Looking a little guilty with her loot...
(Mommy says yeah again for new hairbows!)

Practicing the queen wave, her new trick!
After letting Mom and Heather get settled, and me dealing with a clogged duct back at home (felt very much a mommy on my first birthday as one), it was time to party!

At our favorite restaurant for special occasions, for the first time with the boys: Paprikas!

The party hats Heather brought lent a festive air and were a great hit!

Evening is not the best time of day for Sophia, but she stay happily entertained in Nana's arms

Back at the ranch apartment, the gift spree continued.

Hard to say who loves the singing picnic set more - Sophia or her brothers!

Tia Heather worked on a South American puzzle with her nephews
Another very popular (and useful) gift: pajamas for the boys! This is the only completely matching outfit they have. I think it's fun!

We had a big day the next day, Sunday.

A little picnic amongst the siblings before church

Jake and the boys making me a chocolate chip cake!

Success! Their first cake ever was super tasty.
In the afternoon, we had a Casa de Amor volunteer activity.

Team Beaty, off to the wally ball courts! (Minus our favorite baby who stayed back with Nana.)

We had a great few days with our visitors! Jake and I got some rare time alone and us girls went to a tea room one afternoon.

Sporting a new hair bow!

Heather and Sophia

Mom and Heather were pretty much in charge of bathing Sophia and washing all that fabulous hair. Mom sent me this picture once home. She's getting so big!!

Heather also helped me out in a big way by reorganizing the baby's shelf!

The next time we see each other, it should be in the US.... :-)

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Our growing baby!

(When this posts, we'll be on our family trip to Copacabana, Bolivia!!)

Every once in a while the boys and I come across pictures of Sophia. We could look at them all day long! She has changed SO much since being a scrawny little newborn.

From 1 to 8 months...

November 2013 

 December 2013

January 2014 

February 2014 

 March 2014

April 2014

 May 2014

June 2014 

Sunday, June 15, 2014

Father & Sons

This was supposed to be posted yesterday, but I haven't had internet access since beginning our trip to La Paz and Copacabana. Now I've finished writing it at an internet cafe and... 

In honor of Father's Day......

 Jake & Sons: a formidable team in the making!!

 A special message for daddy on our Bolivian Father's Day (March 19)

Busy making Father's Day cards (also March 19)

We found a youtube video for making these cute shirt cards and the boys picked up how to do it very quickly! Joel still remembers all the many folds.

Bike riding is one of the FAVORITE activities of all four! They spend hours exploring the city from the nearby bike trail. (This picture is from Pedestrian Day in April, which is why Jake isn't on a bike. He walked with me and the baby!)

Love this picture of the mud splatters :)

In one of our planning sessions before the boys arrived, Jake and I came up with a chore and award system that has as it's foundation the system the boys already used in Casa de Amor II, but adding our own flair. For example, instead of a Friday night movie being the prize, it's money!

The first day of the month is always exciting as the boys calculate their award earnings - as well as any deductions - from the previous month!

The cups I bought for "Daddy's bank"! 

The boys have learned to set aside tithe, spending money, and savings. We encourage them to save as much as possible. Jake has not given them the go-ahead to spend this yet (on parent approved purchases), but that time might be coming and the boys have big plans... Stay tuned!!

 Pay Day!

With the little bit of spending money usually left over, the boys happily buy little treats at the local tiendas (stores) or various toys and trinkets from Saturday market. 

Poor guys! Jake spends hours fixing cheap Bolivian toys. This evening, the water gun was unfortunately beyond repair.

Becoming parents to 4 kids all in the span of 10 weeks time is kind of like being thrown in the deep end of the pool...and living there! In a remarkably short period of time, Jake went from abiding in a peaceful cabin in the woods to living in an apartment, in a city, with lots of noisy people. It's been quite the shock at times, but considering the contrast for him, I'm impressed with how well he tolerates it! And, of course how he embraces fatherhood.

Each day and week we grow closer as a family. When we stop and think about it, it's hard to believe that the boys haven't even been with us half a year yet! We've all come a long way and still have quite the journey ahead. I'm so glad for Jake's wisdom as we deal with different situations in our family. He might laugh at this, but he's also my stabilizer. His humor keeps me sane after long days (and nights)!

All four of our kids are either just like Jake, or Jake wannabes. Jake puts up a little protest every time I say this, but he knows it's true!! :-)

HAPPY FATHER'S DAY!!! my Dad, too. Thanks for always being such a great provider and supporter of our dreams! :)