Ah, sweet springtime! School is about done. Flowers are blooming. The dogs got a warm weather hair cut. Here's Birdzie relaxing in the sun:


Ella is very much into doing things for herself. Here she is painting:

Ella painting

And here she is telling me "NO! I do it!"

Ella says no

To celebrate the end of school we went to the Anderson Gardens in Litchfield. I brought my new video camera that also takes pictures to try to get a feel for how to work it. (I still really have no idea!) Caleb brought along my other camera, so we both took some pictures. Here I am trying out the camera:

Shannon taking a picture

and the end result:

I like the quality of my old one better, but as a video camera, the new one works fine. At least I think it does. Once I figure out how to get the movies off my computer and onto a DVD.
Anyhow, back to Anderson Gardens... Ella is Ms. Independent. She wants to do and see it all; unassisted, thank you very much! She bounded through the garden, stopping to smell just about every flower on the way.

Ella walking

Some of the kids brought their roller-blades and scooters. Here's Corbin zooming by on his scooter.

Corbin on his scooter

Here's Anna and I smelling the flowers.

Anna and Shannon smelling flowers

The weather was pleasant, but the sky kept making us wonder if it was going to storm. Thankfully it didn't do much but drizzle. Caleb took a picture of the neat clouds overhead.


After touring the Garden we jaunted over to the newly rebuilt Ripley Park playground. The kids all thought it was pretty cool.

the playground

One of the many enjoyable activities was a climbing wall. Here's Nora tackling it.

Nora climbing

Go, Nora, go!

Nora again

Even Alex seemed to enjoy himself when he thought no one was looking.


Here's Anna on the monkey bars:

Anna on the monkey bars

Here's Corbin exploring:


Anna has many beloved stuffed animals that take turns going places with her. Here she is with some of her loves.


Corbin made the mistake of sitting on a tire swing, and Alex, being the nice big brother he is, seized the opportunity to assist him in spinning really fast.

dizzy Corbin

Caleb enjoyed taking stealth photos of it all. Here he is hiding out, taking a picture of...

Caleb hiding

...Mom, who is taking a picture of him, of course!

Shannon taking a picture

The first batch of hot days found the kids outside in the pool.

the kids in a kiddie pool

They also enjoyed running through the silly sprinklers. Here's Anna sneaking a drink:

Anna in the sprinkler

And Ella trying to copy her. The effect on her, though, was mostly water up the nose.

Ella trying to drink

And now for our big news...

Corbin got a dog! After his last beloved rat died we caved in. His name is Bubba. He is so sweet and mellow. Just the perfect dog for Corbin. Here are the two of them:

Corbin and Bubba

We had a blast gathering at a park with some friends to play some baseball and fly some kites. Alex is into goofy hats:


Here's Alex helping Ella on the go-round:

Alex with Ella

Anna shares a ride with Ella:

Anna and Ella

Finally, here's some of the kites flying high:


Sadly, all too soon it was time to go.

sad Ella with Alex

We'll end with Birdzie smiling:


What is she smiling about? Summer is just starting, and we have many other adventures in store!

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