Saturday, July 30, 2016

July 4th and Texas!!

On almost the last day of July, I finally get up pictures from our wonderful July 4th trip to TEXAS!!

The whole original Thompson crew was there, plus new additions to the family:

What a great picture! Seeing it made me realize "Wow, we're a big group of people now!"
We've definitely expanded since my childhood visits.

This is the first time I've been in Texas since pregnant with Sophia. Now I was the same pregnant again (about half way) and several children richer. It was the first time for all of the Thompson relatives to meet all five of my children in person!

Cousins together again!
Jessica and Christopher; Travis and Taylor
Emma, Jennifer, Sarah, Heather

AND, there are actually TWO other tiny people in this picture... We found out on this trip that Jessica is due early next year! It's the first time I have a pregnant cousin - fun!

 A cousin picture collage hung in the lake house dining room. Great memories!

A selfie attempt as we got underway on our 11ish hour road trip. For sanity sake, we sent Samuel in the (quiet) car with Nana and Pops and crew, and my sister Sarah came with us. She loves our little ones and laughs heartily at Jake's jokes!

Lydia getting out some of her abundant energy at a gas top in Texarkana

Sophia was again the show-stopper with her favorite rolling backpack, purchased in Cochabamba right at a year ago

We had SO much fun on and in the water! The lake house is on Lake Granbury and also has access to a community pool.

Sophia as the "capitana", not a far fetched role, ha

This is the same paddle boat my sisters and I used many years ago...

Don't let the life jacket fool you! There was no way we were getting in the middle of the lake with the world's busiest and least cautious 1 year old, even though (or perhaps because?) she LOVES water and getting wet.

This is the closest she got, a quick pose with Joel to say she was on the lake a minute! Even here she is squirming to get down and run around.

It was so much fun to go out in the boat!! We all left inspired to get a lake house and boat of our own, ha.

 On the pontoon boat Pops rented for the day

 Enjoying the new experience!! Samuel often opted to stay back at the lake house, but he did have some fun out
Joel getting up on skis - on his first attempt!! My cousin Travis gave them lessons. Michael also did well.

Happy face!

 Loving a swim with Daddio

 Sophia LOVED the boat and lake!! I was glad we managed to keep her from getting sunburned...

...if not always awake. :) She (GASP!) missed her nap this day, but caught a little snooze by Daddy.

And a lake house summer tradition - Heather's birthday!!! 
 I love all the July 4th decorations

  Sophia and Lydia ready for cake

And then, because our travel plans had us missing all the firework shows, we planned to get a peek at a local country club's show a week later. But alas, a huge thunderstorm moved through right as it was to begin and it was canceled.

The birthday picture with Aunt Heather, better late than never!

Instead, we did sparklers in the garage while the rain poured.

And, just because this is the closest I got to getting pictures of the babies in their July 4th best...

At a classic car show in Collierville
Sophia is a champion poser and quite enjoys pictures, but Lydia must be contained!

Sunday, July 17, 2016


My midwife's assistant (and amazing doula and midwife-to-be) was looking for takers for six kittens, already used to playing with her (six) children! I'd been told to request two the next time some came available, so I did... And it was a BIG surprise for the kids!! Best day of Samuel's life! It was really, really tough for him to leave Stanley behind in Bolivia (picked up at a birthday at Casa de Amor, 2 months before Lydia was born!).

 Kitties June and Julian!

They were born on June 12, Samuel's 12th birthday. That would be an obvious reason to name one June, but it was mainly in my head since reading this book (from one of the boys for my birthday), which I REALLY enjoyed, and seeing that the author's daughter is named June (born in September, ha).
June was the only female of the litter.

Just meeting the kitties! It was fun to choose.

We met them on July 16, Joel's birthday! Julian comes from the Julian calendar, sounds like July, and it's kind of cool that both of their names start with J. "JJ", like Joel's first two initials...

Happy boys, happy birthday!

(The stuffed animal in the picture is being swung around by Lydia, who needed something to squish other than an unsuspecting kitten!)

We were supposed to go and choose, picking up the kittens next week when they're 6 weeks old, but well... We were told we could go ahead and take them, how could we say no?!

Sophia is still deciding if she's bigger than them or just plain afraid. :) Instead of getting cute pictures of Sophia with a kitty, I caught her pitching it down because of feeling the sharp nails, oops. We're still learning!!

This was right before Lydia's chubby hand was swatted at by a tiny paw, as Julian feared for his food! Lydia wasn't hurt at all, only offended! Everyone around here shares their food with her, and she couldn't believe she couldn't have a taste, too. :)

 Having a tussle

 The girls love them!

Love this picture of Chubs peering into kitty's face