Sunday, June 28, 2020

Happy Easter and Happy Birthday Eloise!

April 12 was Easter Sunday.  Easter wasn't much different in isolation, except that we had church at Grandma and Grandpa's house.  We usually celebrate Easter as a family day.  
 Here the children are being eggs.
 Chowing down on Easter treats before church.
 We were starting to have a Sunday routine.  We get up, play a little, go for a family walk, and have church at our house, the grandparents' house, or the Campbells' house at 11, with family lunch afterward.  Justin brings the girls for lunch, and then the cousins play for a few hours in the afternoon.  We reorganized bedrooms so that Sammy and B wouldn't be going to bed at the same time in the same room every night.  Eloise and Sammy are now roommates, with staggered bedtimes, which is working out very peacefully.
 Since church typically only lasts around half an hour now, Sammy has taken to putting his Sunday clothes on over his play clothes, and stripping off a layer as soon as the service is over.  Since we all live in the same neighborhood, half the kids and Todd usually go home right after church, change clothes, and come back.  On Easter, church was followed by Easter surprises from Grandma and Grandpa.  The kids all got new swimming suits, just in time for pool season.  Thank you, Grandparents!
 Eloise and Sammy made rolls to look like bunnies for Easter dinner (you are looking at their tails). All of the best ones got eaten first, and I forgot to take a picture until the meal was over. 
 Easter is such a joyful celebration of Jesus Christ.  I'm beginning to like it more than Christmas, since it has so much less stress and pomp.
Speaking of joy, Eloise took her jump rope on our morning walk one day, and this picture I captured looks like pure childhood happiness to me.
 Having a pet little brother who always wants to play makes Eloise smile.
  Jared wiped out on his bike one day.  Grandpa just happened to be passing by, so he came to the rescue and patched him up.  I had been at Colette's house, and, when I got back, I asked Jared what happened. He said he was fine because Grandpa had something that he put on it that disinfected the scrapes AND took the pain away.  It turned out to be CBD cream which we teased Jared about.  I've heard it's a great painkiller, but I don't know about being a disinfectant.  Jared's arm, hand, and face healed well, although we did get his wrist X-rayed when it was still hurting a lot the next day.  Nothing was broken.  His knee and ankle got infected.  I'll spare you the gross photos, but the swelling and pain got pretty bad.  He had to get antibiotics (going to the doctor during a pandemic is a new kind of adventure) and he had to avoid swimming for a couple of weeks.
Jared's accident was the only thing that marred an otherwise excellent birthday for this crazy lady.  Eloise turned nine this year! NINE!  I can't believe this strong, confident, capable, stylish lady is my tiny Eloise.  
 She had big plans to have a girl party, doing girl things with all of her fun girl cousins, but it turned out that the girl things she had picked were universally appealing, so the boys ended up staying for her party, too.  We had it on a Friday night, so there was pizza and movie watching, of course.  We also did an art activity (drawing dolphins), opened presents, ate cake, and sang karaoke.
 All of the singing and dancing had our walls shaking.  It was a great party.  Happy birthday, Eloise!
The weather was beautiful.  While the first day over 100 degrees came at the end of April this year, most of April and May were not too hot.  Kite flying at the park for P.E.: these kids are living the life.  
 When all ten cousins are together we can get a pretty lively soccer/basketball/ultimate frisbee/ 500 game going on.  Or all of them at once if we can't decide.  The neighborhood park by our house was generally deserted, so we felt okay about going there during isolation.
 One Sunday afternoon we were feeling cooped up, so we took the kids to see where we had our first kiss.  They were totally grossed out, of course, and wanted to take a zillion pictures of reenactments.
 You'll notice Jared running out of this photo as fast as he could get away (but not fast enough).
 It's a delight to share all of these beautiful memories with our kids, along with all of the subtle beauties of Arizona.
 I like the fact that you have to be paying attention to notice all of the perfect, tiny flowers on the blossoming cactus.  Washington flowers are big and bold, but Arizona flowers are flawless.
 Todd bought this sombrero to wear to embarrass the kids, but, with no schoolmates to be embarrassed around, they are starting to pick up on the practicality of wearing your own shade.
 Things are different, but we are sharing priceless moments.

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