A Quarter of the Year in One Post

Okay guys... I fell off the blogging wagon hard.  Face-first, into the mud.  But it's a new year and I've got new goals!  Trying to catch up with what I've missed makes me feel like a hamster scrambling on a never-ending wheel, so I've decided I'm going to post a slew of pictures from the end of 2017, and then push forward into 2018.

I'm disappointed in myself for letting the details slip through the cracks, but we will always remember that 2017 was good to our little family.






I got to be Camden's soccer coach in the fall.  He absolutely loved every minute of it, and was always begging to play, never wanting to take a water break.  All the kids on the team were super cute and we had a great time learning the game.






Explored Sedona with our determined little hikers.






These two are best friends and worst enemies.  Just like it's supposed to be - haha!



Tried out new methods to make General Conference an interesting and exciting weekend for the kids.



Started going to Mr. Steve's story time again, since Hallie is approaching that age group.  Camden doesn't mind tagging along one bit, and still loves Mr. Steve!



We've also had a ton of outside time this fall and winter, because it's been unseasonably warm.  Camden has been waiting and waiting for a good enough snowfall for a snowball fight... but I'm not complaining one bit.








Roy and I got to go to a 20s themed murder mystery dinner that was tons of fun.  When Roy commits to a character, he commits!  And hilarity ensues, of course.  He's the best!



Camden turned 5!!!!  He requested an American Ninja Warrior birthday party, so that's what he got.  The people at the gymnastics place set up obstacle courses, and everyone won a metal.  The birthday boy was in heaven.








This is the first family portrait Camden has ever drawn, and it seemed worthy of documentation.  He completed this piece of art at preschool {and I'm guessing it was a specific assignment, from the quote written down}.  When he gave this to me he said the far left is Hallie {"She doesn't have very much hair"} and next is me {"You have long hair"} then Camden {"See my lips?  I'm about to give you a kiss"} and then Daddy {"Daddy can't hold hands with the rest of us because he's too tall}.  Ha!  I love it so much!


And this one!!!


Cam is all about "experiments."  They are normally messy, gross, and may involve raw eggs if I'm not paying close enough attention.



Cam's drawing of a porcupine.



The highlight of visiting Utah for Hallie was petting horses and spotting deer.


We played Dare Dice with the Tietjens and McAffees, which is always a sure memory-maker.




Gingerbread houses with Grammy, Jax, and Aunt Jess.





My little brother, Zac, had recently earned his pilot's license and we went up with him for the first time.  I was a little nervous, but everything went perfectly smoothly.  I'm proud of my little bro!  That didn't mean I was about to let Camden go up in the plane with him yet, but still totally proud.





Hallie is head over heels in love with her cousin, Jax.  It was so cute to watch them following each other around and getting into mischief together.




We had Thanksgiving dinner at a restaurant this year, since Mom and Dad were in the middle of moving out of their house.  The food was actually awesome, and we didn't have to clean anything up.  Kiiiinda hope that a new tradition has ben sparked.


The next day was Camden's actual fifth birthday.  Grammy put on a mini family superhero party for him, and he found himself in heaven all over again.




Aunt Kelsey flew into Salt Lake and drove home with us.  Having her help with the kids on the long drive was invaluable, but I really can't stress enough how much we loved having her visit us in Arizona.  I can't believe how much I've lucked out in the in-law department.




Hallie thought she was so funny walking around like this.













Camden's Preschool program was adorable as ever.  He had a speaking part this year, and did great.  "Gingerbread cookies and fresh apple pie, smoke in the chimney, curling toward the sky."



Mama and Daddy went to San Francisco with Uncle Mason, but I'll document that elsewhere (because this post is going to be like 200 pictures, haha!).  Uncle Mason came home to visit after San Francisco.  Huge celebrity in our house.



And then Aunt Kirsten came!  Another huge celebrity!  The best part about the holidays is having the family roll in.


When Grammy and Papa got into town, a bunch of us went on the North Pole Experience.  We rode a magical bus through a portal and to the North Pole!  We helped the elves make toys, ate Mrs. Claus' cookies and hot chocolate, graduated Elf School, wrote our Christmas wish lists in the mail room, and finally got to see the big man himself.









Oh, and Hallie was a tyrant the entire time, but we still love her.






Christmas Eve hike.





Christmas Eve traditions with some of the cutest kids I know.  We read the story of Christ's birth from Luke while the kids played with the Little People nativity toys.  We went around the house and collected toys for Santa to take to the North Pole so he can refurbish them for other children.  And, of course, we put out milk and cookies.












After all the family went home, we basked in the Christmas afterglow until New Years Eve.  We had some friends over and counted down to midnight {which was actually like 9:30pm, but none of our kids knew any different}.









Yes, we were vacuuming up confetti for weeks.  Actually, I am staring at a glittery little piece as I'm writing this, haha!  Still totally worth it.


Okay 2018... hope you're going to be amazing, because I'm going to write it all down!