Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Benjamin's Baptism

Benjamin was baptized on Feb 1, 2014.   He had been looking forward to that day for a long time.
We made it to the church early so that he and Alan could get jumpsuits and change.  We didn't figure out until the night before that Benjamin didn't have any plain white underwear (they all have characters on them).  We went shopping around town, and the best we could do was white with a light gray waistband, and even those were hard to find.  I guess plain white is not a popular choice right now.
After they were dressed, we had to take the traditional pictures that the girls took when they were baptized.  We like the pictures of Jesus around the church.
I loved how excited Benjamin was about everything.  It was a very special day for him!  He was VERY excited about his new scriptures and his new scripture bag.  He also had on his new tie tack - a sword and shield to remind him of the armor of God with a CTR to help him remember to choose the right. The baptism was different this time for me, because I didn't help anyone change and get dressed after they were baptized.  I just went in to wait with everyone else while everyone got dressed.
Benjamin had both sets of grandparents there, some aunts and uncles, and lots of cousins too.
 (Many of the kids are eating cupcakes and cookies because we had refreshments in the gym afterwards)
 Benjamin was baptized with two little girls in his primary class.  He and Lilly (the one on the left) were born a day apart, and were in the hospital together.
They have grown a lot since then!  :)
Here is Benjamin on Sunday with the family members who were in his confirmation circle.  He was glad that Uncle Chris and Uncle Kelly were there along with his grandpas, but he was not enjoying the pictures in the sun!
 After church I made the kids take some pictures together.  They are all pretty well trained by now, but they still goof around a bit!

As long as I get what I want, they can do what they want.
My dad was able to get a family picture of us after the baptism too.  I am sure that we will all look a lot different by the time Robert is baptized.  It will be fun to compare the two pictures.  It is weird to think that I could have married kids or even grandkids by then...I guess we will see what the future holds!

Friday, February 21, 2014

Benjamin Turns 8

I can't believe that Benjamin turned 8 last month.  It seems like yesterday that he was turning 2.  They tell the truth when they say time goes by fast, so enjoy every minute of your kids' childhood.  I am trying to do that, but it still seems to zoom by.  It wasn't as hard for me as I thought it would be to have Benjamin turn 8.  I think Robert helped with that, because it isn't my baby turning 8 anymore.  I still have a ways to go before I reach that milestone now.  Before it seemed like my kids were almost all grown up.
 The kids had activities on Benjamin's birthday, but when everyone got home, Ben opened his presents.  He was pretty happy and wanted to open them all right then.
 However, we hadn't eaten yet, so we decided to go to Papa's pizza  - even though it was already 8pm.  We get birthday coupons each time it is someone's birthday, and we decided it would be less crowded to  go that night then to wait for the weekend.

 We all enjoyed the pizza treat.  Our tradition is that the birthday person gets to pick the flavor pizza.  Benjamin is a pepperoni only pizza guy, but none of the other kids complained!

 Robert thought the play area was so much fun!  It is great to have lots of siblings to play with you.
 The other kids thought the play area was pretty fun too.
 We celebrated with the rest of the family on Sunday.  Leilani made Benjamin's birthday cake.  She made a basketball (as he requested) with a hoop and backboard.
 He had lots of fun, and received nice gifts (the bullets in the picture were not his gifts, though).
Last year, Grandma Bevans started giving the kids the same amount of money as their age.  She gave them $1 bills last year.  This year, as you can see above, she is giving them gold dollar coins.  (I guess anyone else in the family reading this won't be surprised now - sorry!)
Uncle Jeff gave Benjamin one of his puzzle kits.  Ben is excited to put it together.  We are supposed to have a "friend" birthday party this year, because Benjamin has never had one, but it hasn't happened yet.  If it does, I am sure I will post pictures.  We have thrown some pretty spectacular birthday parties in our time!

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Two Little Lovers Sitting in a Tree

I saw this idea on Pinterest, and it really appealed to me.  I decided that I wanted to make it, and since it was a few days until Valentine's Day, it worked out perfectly.  I put it together in just a few hours at craft day, and I think it turned out really cute!

The original idea can be found here:  http://www.thedatingdivas.com/tara/two-little-lovers-decor/   I modified it a little bit.  The tree is cut out of paper that is printed with the lyrics of YOUR special song, whatever that may be.  Ours happens to be "Can You Feel the Love Tonight."  So the first step, if you wanted to make one of these, is to find the lyrics to YOUR special song and type them up.  You can find lyrics to most songs at this website: http://www.azlyrics.com/    Go through the lyrics and put special words or phrases in bold, italics, or different fonts to make them stand out.  Once you are done, copy and paste the lyrics all over the page.  It should look something like this:
(only without the tree yet).  I tried it out with different font sizes, but I found that the smaller font (11 for me) fit the most words of the song on the tree.  I also played around with the margins, so I could get the words and phrases showing on the tree like I wanted them to do.  When I was done with my lyric page, I printed it out on white cardstock. 

 The next step is to put the lyric paper into the printer and print out the tree template on top of the lyrics.  The tree template can be downloaded here: http://www.thedatingdivas.com/tara/two-little-lovers-decor/  (which is the same link as above, just scroll down the page a little bit and download the pdf file).  It will look like this:
There won't actually be any words on the template.  I just printed mine out on scratch paper first, so I could hold it over the words and make sure I liked the words that were in the tree outline before I printed them all together on the cardstock.  It will look like the picture with the words and tree above once it is all printed out.  Then you have to cut the tree out.  I just used scissors, but the website recommended an exacto knife.  They also have a print out for the hearts on their website.  It will look like this printed out:
It also has instructions for the craft on this sheet.  After you cut the hearts out, you need to ink around the edge of the tree and hearts.  This helps them to stand out on the white page.  Inking is pretty easy.  A make up wedge and a black ink pad works fine, although I actually have wedged ink pads. 
This is how the cut out items looked when I was finished inking them.  You just lightly dab the ink all around the edges. Obviously I did not do a perfect job, but it still looks cute all put together.
The next step is to glue the cutouts to white cardstock, and then attach the larger hearts to the tree with ribbon or twine.  If you use glue dots, it makes the cut outs stand off the page a bit for some dimension.  I actually use both glue dots and a glue stick.  I used red ribbon, to loop around the branch and glue under the hearts.  The website used a red/white twine. The twine looked cute, but I didn't want to go shopping - I just wanted to use what I had on hand.  I like how it looked with the ribbon too.  Once it was all glued together, I put it into my frame.  I did have to trim the cardstock a little bit to get it to fit.
 The smaller hearts are actually glued on the outside of the glass.  This makes it pop out a bit.  I wrote our names on the hearts with a sharpie pen, and then used glue dots to attach the hearts onto the glass over the larger hearts.
The website has another download to print out a tag to  go with the framed picture.  I printed them out, but they were way too big for my liking.  If I had taken time, I probably could have shrunk one of the tags down to the size I needed, but it was easier to just re-type the words myself.

Instead of a tag, I just glued the words in the lower corner of the frame.  That way it didn't detract from the tree and hearts, but it still gave my work of art a title :)
I really liked how it turned out, and I will be putting it in our room.  To my husband's credit, he actually did notice that the tree was made out of the words to OUR song without any prompting on my part.  My ten year old daughter noticed that too, which impressed me, because I didn't know my kids knew what OUR song was.  I guess I know that my parents' special song is "More."  So maybe I shouldn't be so surprised that my kids know mine.

Monday, February 17, 2014

Asian Celebration

This year Ben and Elisabeth both performed in the Asian Celebration at the fairgrounds.  They both did a great job!
 Benjamin got to wear his first Kimono (he wore a Happi coat when he was younger).  Grandma made it out of Star Wars material the he picked out.
 All the kids sang together, and then they broke down into smaller groups by grade.

 Elisabeth played the recorder while the other kids were singing during the Sakura song.
Benjmain's class did a great rendition of Momotado.  It is on the side bar under Family Movies.

 Grandma and Grandpa Bevans came to watch.  Kyle is in Benjamin's class, so his family was there too.
 Elisabeth danced and played the taiko drums.  Her dance can also be seen on the side bar under family movies.

 She got the fancy kimonos reserved for the fifth graders.  They have pretty fancy Obis (waist band ties) to go on them.
 Elisabeth was kind of sad because it was her last time to perform at the Asian Celebration, but she was happy to get to wear the special kimonos!
 After the celebration, we walked around and looked at the booths.  They had a petting zoo area, which the kids really enjoyed.  (We only had the three youngest, because Leilani was at volleyball and Emily was at dance)

 They thought it was pretty cool to pet the crocodile.  If you look close, you can see that they had her mouth taped shut.  Her name was Tinkerbell, which didn't seem very croc like to me.
 Benjamin had a Lemur climbing on him and trying to eat his hat.
 Alan decided that he wanted to hold Tinkerbell.  Robert wasn't sure that he liked that.
 Benjamin wanted to hold Tinkerbell also, but he wasn't old enough to do it by himself.  They were afraid the crocodile might get scared and throw himself out of Ben's hands.
The kids also liked the Chinese dancing dragon.  We had a good time, and look forward to it again next time.