Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Random Pictures

I have just some random photos to share.

Coby making a beautiful face. Molly and Anna are in the background. I thought Molly would appreciate it if I just put this picture on. I have one where her face matches Coby's. I was looking for a pic to put on for my facebook profile when I realized that there aren't that many photos of me. Here's a recent one of Jacob and I.

Jacob has a new fixation with his tongue.

This is for Michael's benefit. I'm not a Cubs fan, but he is diehard. Too bad they always choke in the end. Are we going for 101 years dry spell now?

Christine and Emma goofing around with Brandon's hats.

Christine really wanted her picture taken.

So did Emma.

Michael needed some pictures of downtown for a brochure he did, so he went to take these from the rims the other night. I like to go on the rims and look at the view; it always amazes me how fast our little town is growing. This one has MSU-B in the foreground.

This is 27th street in the center.

This is the Conoco refinery (in Lockwood).

Not a lot going on here with us, just wasting our last weeks of summer.

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Jeremy's Wedding and Backpacking

During our long travels, my oldest brother got married. We are so happy to have Carmen be a part of our family. Michael did their pictures, so I included a few candid shots.

The happy couple. Ashton, Jeremy, Carmen, and Brandon

Jeremy goofing off. All of us together - thanks to Keith and Jelly for taking these.

The original cake maker had to back out, I thought these were pretty good for short notice.

Onto the backpacking trip. Every year, Michael, my brother Kevin, and my nephew Brandon take a backpacking trip. This year they went above Cody to Dead Indian. Unfortunately, Brandon got sick and they were only able to stay one night.

Beautiful scenery. The mighty hikers getting ready to start. There is usually a before and after picture by the signage, but none this year. Kevin and Michael weren't ready to give up. They couldn't go on with their original plans, so they decided to go up the Big Horns to Porcupine instead.

Some of their catch. Since they didn't have to carry it on their backs, they brought everything but the kitchen sink. I think this meal ran about 2000 calories. Lots of butter and bacon grease.

A blurry picture from the car of the Croft cabin. We're trying to get there this summer.

That about wraps up our trip. We had a lot of fun, but it sure is nice to be home.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Adventures in Babysitting

Before I start this post, I would like to wish my wonderful husband a happy birthday. I love you and hope we have made your day special. We all love you!!

A little randomness today, then I'll continue the vacation posts.

Today I was thinking of how long I have been watching other people's children. I figured out that with about three years or so worth of breaks here and there I have been watching other people's children for 14 years (over 17 years). I think this explains a lot about my condition, for I truly must be insane.

I have actually contemplated doing this post before, but I didn't want to offend any of the parents of the children I have watched. Let's just say I have been asked to do some pretty incredible things.

Here are some things I have gained or can do though:
I can recite the movies Beauty and the Beast and Mary Poppins from beginning to end. I don't know how many times I've watched Beauty and the Beast, but one summer I watched Mary Poppins nearly every weekday for three months straight. Stacey, do you remember when Matilda was hidden? That didn't make me sad.

I can feed five children lunch and nurse a baby at the same time. I can also get them to eat a fruit, vegetable, protein, and grain at every meal.

I can make Costco runs with five children. -What I can't do is make people's rude comments stop. What if all of those children are mine? Is that really any of your business? I did however, get a hug once when putting a box of diapers in my cart.

I can sing nearly every Laurie Berkner song and all of the primary songs from memory.

I can play ring around the rosies with the best of them.

My house usually isn't totally covered with toys. There are times when it is, but I can get them to clean up (I've been known to throw a toy away for motivation's sake).

I can walk 2 blocks with 2 preschoolers, 2 2 year olds and 2 kids in a double stroller.

Because I have a wonderful husband, I have been able to attend prenatal and well child visits by myself (or with one child in the case of their own check-ups).

I'll admit, I don't always love having other people's children here, but my kids like having friends here nearly every day. They are a lot of fun to have here. I especially love watching the little ones learn and grow and discover new things. Sometimes I wish I could just have my kids here with me by myself, but on the occasional days that we are here by ourselves, it gets boring. On the whole it's been a good 14 years.

Thursday, July 16, 2009

And Now It Starts

I have a lot of updating to do, so I'll just start from the beginning. At the end of June, Michael's brother Coby and his family came to Billings for a visit. We had a bbq at Wynn's with Tori and Mike. This was our first time meeting Anna; she is such a doll! She is 8 months old (notice how close in size she and Jacob are there is a four month difference). Out of all of the pictures that we took, we managed to leave Coby, Molly, Michael and me out of all of them.

Lily with her new friend Tori. Grandpa with all of the kids: Ryan, Emma, Jacob, Anna, Christine, and Lily.

Grandpa and Anna. Mike with Jacob.

Next onto my family reunion.

This is a view of the cabins from the lodge. The sky looked like this until the day we left.

This is my parents tent, if you look closely, ours is to the left. Emma playing cards.

Isabel (Kevin's daughter) loved picking flowers. This was the preferred mode of transportation for the kids. I'm not sure if Aunt Barb has more fun or them. This is Christine and Isabel.

My cousin Mary with her son James. Porter, Adam, and Jamen took over Jacob's toy for the afternoon. Adam would do a cute little dance to the music.

We had a pine wood derby. Most of us procrastinated making our cars until we got there. Here is Michael and Christine making her school bus. Here she is with the finished product.

The track was awesome. Here is David getting a heat started. Thanks for bringing the track up Fabianos!

Here's the reason for the gathering. Each family is wearing their own color. Notice how Croys dominated the scene. This was actually one of the smallest reunions. The siblings and spouses. l-r, back standing - Bill, Marilyn, Bill, my parents, Allen, Elaine, seated - Hazel and Barb. We sure missed Margaret, Gloria, Val, and Andy.

Next up: Camping with the Bisbys.

Here is most of Michael's family. Standing l-r: Emma, Michael, Coby, Cindy, Jay, and Pat. Sitting l-r: Christine, me with Jacob, Molly with Anna, Ryan, and Lily. Next picture is Addison, Staysha, and Molly.

What would a Bisby get together be without a birthday party? We celebrated Coby's, Michael's, Chelsea's, Keesha's, and Steven's birthdays (I hope I got that right). Next picture is Eric and Addison.

Beautiful scenery. It's not a party without funny Uncle Jeff. This is what the kids call him. When the boys were little, it was scary Uncle Jeff.

Jacob and me relaxing. Candy and Grandpa.

Next up: Jeremy's wedding and Michael's backpacking/camping trip.

Saturday, July 11, 2009

I hate PCs

I am back in the land of the living but still at my parents, which means no mac. I love our computer and will never return to the nightmarish land of PCs ever agin. I had to restart the internet here four times, just checking my e-mail. I think we've had to restart the mac a handful of times in the two years we've owned it. Anyway, I won't even attempt to post pictures, or do much more than typing. Michael, Kevin, and Brandon left this morning on their backpacking trip. I hope they make it back in one piece with their cans of bear spray not being used.