Thursday, April 22, 2010

Guess what I got for my birthday?

April 3rd started off spectacularly. Any day that begins with a family breakfast in bed (I don't like to eat alone) shows some definite promise. Then, we were off to an Easter egg hunt with friends. That means happy kids. Finally, we got to spend the day listening to General Conference, which is a total bonus because it means we spend the day with family listening to uplifting messages. Then you add into the mix the fact that I have a husband who is the master of surprise.

That's right. Baby #3 is on the way and, after months of posturing to make sure I was convinced we were going to wait on making such a big purchase, Adam presented me with this on my birthday:

That's right. My dream car - complete with a big, red bow. He did tell me two days before that he had been looking for weeks and wanted me to have a chance to weigh in on such a big decision so we could pick the right minivan. We had looked at a few, and I loved this one. He did all the negotiating over the phone, got his dad to drive him down to the car lot, and managed to deliver this beauty on my actual birthday.

We loved exploring all the features and showing off the stow-n-go seats.

Is this guy the greatest, or what? Love you, babe. Eternity with you sounds like a really great idea.

Cherry Blossoms

I love cherry blossom season. When I was growing up, there was a cherry blossom tree in our front yard, and I spent endless hours sitting in that tree. It was great for climbing, and I gathered many a bouquet from its branches. The cherry blossoms always come out around my birthday, which is a bonus. Last year, Adam and I took a trip downtown to enjoy the beautiful scene around the tidal basin. This year, we brought the kids and went with our friends, the Rasmussens. We packed a picnic, took a GREAT walk from our friends' apt in Arlington (right by Arlington cemetery, across Memorial Bridge, and down to the tidal basin), and ended the evening with a quick tour of the FDR Memorial.

Here are our friends, the Rasmussens...who have trained their children well how to smile nicely for photos.

Here's our family...not a single photo from the day has both kids smiling. Emma mostly does this funny forced smile these days. Spence was a sport to pose for the picture when he wanted to be playing freeze tag with the fellas. (Love you, bud).

Em humored me for a few more shots down by the blossoms. She likes it when we do things "'cause we're the girls." I love having this little lady in our family.

And kudos to Adam for being our photographer. He loves having a camera that snaps a shot per second, though sometimes the subjects start to wonder just how many photos we really need...

April Fool's Day

Spencer has been looking forward to April Fool's Day for MONTHS. I'm not a big one for tricks, so while I helped provide some of the regulars (cup of water propped on a door, raisin in the toothpaste cap, paper in the sandwich), the task fell to Adam to pull something on Spencer that he wouldn't be expecting. He came up with a good one. The night before, Adam poured cereal and milk in the kids' bowls. Then, he put the bowls in the freezer. In the morning, he added a layer of fresh cereal on top with a little milk. Spencer was digging away trying to make sense of it. It was by far the best trick of the day...more fun still because we had our friends the Hazembullers in town to share in the fun.


Gma W treated us to a super fun day at Great Country Farms with the cousins.

The kids did rope mazes...

jumped on the pumpkin pillow...

and played in the corn...

With each new activity, they seemed to be endlessly entertained. It was only when the adults suggested we keep exploring that they would move on to something new. What a great place!

And, I had to post this video so my sis-in-law can see cute Daniel. He was thinking the rope swings looked like fun. He ran up and managed to get some good rides in by sticking just his belly into the loop. Impressive feat!

Another Teenager in the Family

March 28th, my sister Sarah became a full-fledged teenager. In the Cummings family, that particular milestone is accompanied by a rite of passage: you get to wear make-up. She looked gorgeous in some nice, natural toned make-up, but the best part is, she is pretty on the inside too.

Sarah and I have birthdays within a week of each other. I wanted her to be born right on my 16th birthday but cannot fault her for coming a little earlier. She is a delightful sister, and my kids LOVE having her as an aunt. Spencer is regularly planning play dates with Sarah, and Emma is always wanting Sarah to come and babysit her. We love how spunky she is and how she keeps us up to date on the latest goings on in the family. Also, she gets as excited as I do about our family beach week. We were definitely meant to be sisters, even if we didn't get to share a birthday.

Sister Celeste

I'm behind in posting this news, but a few weeks back we got to be with my sweet sister Celeste as she opened her mission call. She read the whole letter out loud; it's powerful. She has been called by a prophet to preach the Gospel in the Denver, CO North mission. She will be teaching in the Spanish language. We are REALLY, REALLY going to miss her while she is gone, but that doesn't keep us from being super excited for her. We love you, Nessa!