Wednesday, November 24, 2010

N'Awlins


Drew Brees at Intel's Supercomputer booth. And me.

The Mississippi at night

The Hari Krishna had a parade while I was there. I thought that was kind of appropriate for New Orleans.

St. Louis Cathedral on Jackson Square

Jackson Square

Mmmm beignets

At Champions Square near the Superdome

Outside the Superdome

Inside the Superdome - the view from our seats

video
Brees TD pass and some really shaky camera work

Cade's Birthday




Cade had a basketball party that turned into a football party too. We rented an indoor gym and let the boys go. A lot better than letting that happen at our house - except for the free-for-all wrestling that started everything off. The girls were content to wear matching outfits and smile for the camera.

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Back to School



With September comes the glorious return to school. The kids were decidedly less excited about it and frankly so was Crystal which was surprising since the kids were R-E-A-D-Y for some structure in their lives again.


The bus stop gang - note the orderly row of backpacks by the curb. The kids have developed a system whereby whoever's backpack is first in line gets to board the bus first and this determines which friend gets to sit with whom. This also sometimes means that we have friends knocking on our door 30 minutes before the bus comes.

Kellen started school about a week after the big kids. He's already showing signs of being the class clown...at least in this picture.

That's more like it...

Wilson Valley Mall

Gabby wanted a "shopping party" for her birthday this year and so her slightly insane mother re-created the mall experience at our house. Even more insanely, Crystal allowed Gabby to invite 14 friends to the party and all but one was able to come. I will admit that the party went off well and that the girls had fun, but I still question the 98 hour commitment to preparing the party...

The first stop - the salon for pedicures.
Next stop: the pretzel shop to make your snack
On to the Lego store...
A visit to Claire's boutique to make some jewelry
The absolutely most over the top element - Build-A-Bear. Yes, Crystal handmade fifteen separate teddy bear forms for the girls to stuff and then forced her Mom to work in the sweatshop sewing the bears closed after the girls finished stuffing their bears.

Not pictured:
  • The personalized "credit cards" each girl had to use while shopping
  • The Purse Cake
  • The Candy Shop / Cold Stone - the girls got to add their own mix-ins to their ice cream bowls (typically that involved multiple heaping scoops of M&Ms, Nerds, mini-marshmallows, chocolate chips, etc.)
  • The See's candy shop - for take home's Crystal made 4 or 5 chocolate suckers
  • The Game Room in the basement
  • John rolling his eyes many many times while having this described
  • John feeling sorry for Crystal because she was feeling overwhelmed - this one was not pictured because it didn't exist.

Gabby's Special Day

Gabby was very excited about her baptismal day - "it's my special day," was a frequent refrain, usually accompanied with a beatific smile. It was a great day and we were honored to have grandparents and friends attend to acknowledge Gabby's decision. We celebrated afterward with a chocolate party - chocolate cookies, chocolate brownies, chocolate cupcakes, and more chocolate.

Gabby & Dad at the baptism

The whole family in the backyard

Kerry, Steve and the special girl

Carol, Doyle and the special girl

The special girl and her tired of pictures baby sister

Special Girl and little bro

Big brother and the special girl
Crystal and girl with the special day

Finally, just the family






Sunday, August 8, 2010

Thompson Family Reunion - Quick Hits

I'm sure there will be many more pictures to come when we get access to Kerry & Laurie's photos, but here are some quick hitters from the Thompson Reunion in Hayden, ID.


John's 7-day beard on day 5.
The Girl Cousins - Avery, Gabby and Amara (aka the watermelon girls)
A view of the house from the lake
Boater #1 - Kellen spent nearly 11 hours on the boat on Friday.
Cade, cousin Jonah and Gabby head out to the open sea for a 3hr tour.
Kellen doing "The Kellen"
Cade posing on the dock
Grandpa and Avery
A leaning jowler

Monday, July 12, 2010

Crater Lake - The People

Despite temperatures in the upper 70's, there was plenty of snow leftover from the region's 44' of annual snowfall. The kids of course wanted to get in and have a snowball fight. Avery included. The sign, for the record, reads: DANGER Keep Off the Roof. We were nowhere near the roof, but good to know just in case.

Avery atop the snow pile

VERY early in the hike (let's just say that the kids were amazing - well except Avery - but it was a hard hike). It was relatively short, but very steep - 1 mile with over 700feet of elevation drop.

A terrific view of most of the lake - Gabby's pouting because Cade wouldn't let her do bunny ears on him in an earlier photo.

Happy times - before Gabby pouted - with Wizard Island in the background
On the boat tour. It was a tough tour - 2 hours in tight quarters at nap for Avery. Crystal tried every trick imaginable to keep Avery happy, but to little avail. I had a great time though and as you'll see, got some great photos.
Kellen monkeying around on the boat tour


Ahhh, the aftermath. If only she would have done this on the boat...