Warning: This post may leave you with a creepy crawly feeling!
It doesn't take much to entertain this family.  I heard laughing and screeching on the back porch to find Jack and Savannah trying to freeze a "giant" bug with ice. 
They had found a live locust that I guess couldn't fly.  Not sure how that part happened but I wouldn't put it past two little curious kids.  Pouring water and ice on the locust made it spin, jump, and vibrate which was the delight of the kids.  
They wanted to take a closer look at the bug so the first challenge was holding it.  That lead to "holding" him in different ways.  
Then we compared him to his shell.  At times these shells are quite collectable around here but I not sure they had ever seen the bug that comes out of the shell until today.  

Teaching tip:  We believe in Jesus/God/Heaven around here.  So the locust is an easy way to discuss death and what happens as an illustration.  The shell is the "old body" it looks just like it.  Kinda like our dead body looks like us but the good stuff the "soul" the part that makes you YOU leaves the "shell" and gets a new body, a better body in heaven.   ;)  The locust even gets wings!


Just like the painters house is never painted my family is never photographed.  I'm working on changing that and jumping in pictures with my husband and kids.  Often my own self esteem issues get in the way but I want them to know that I was there and present in their lives too.  With a big push from our sweet friends the Smiths Grant even got a few "kissing" pictures ;)  a dream fulfilled I think.    
 Sunset the "golden hour" doesn't last long and to get two families photographed before we lost light was difficult so you will actually be able to tell the intensity of the sun lighten.  I like both the bright colors and the muted tones.  The only downside is the squinting but Jack was obeying so well it made me so proud of him.

 The hardest part about family pictures this year was Luke... no surprise to me actually.  He is in that one stage 14-24 months that is the hardest of all ages to photograph.  They don't understand the concept of standing still and if they do they definitely don't do it more than once usually.

Luke actually thought we were playing a game and his smiles were totally genuine which I loved so I just went with it.  There will be plenty of years that I get sweet posed smiles... this just was not one of them.

 And here we are all of us.  I love my life with these people and I'm so thankful for each of them!

 Not his most natural smile but man he was trying so hard!

 Luke totally loved the "beetch" ;)

 The helicopters that flew over were a big favorite.
 Containment by siblings was not his idea of fun...maybe next year.  I mean how cute is this pose!!!

A big big thank you to our sweet friends Lucas and Janet Smith who took all the photos I was in :)


 The sun came back out and it was back to the beach!  Lots of playing in the water and sand.  No one ever wants to leave the beach...

 The "boys" played in the ocean a lot.  So glad Grant had a friend along to join him in all of the wave riding adventures.

 But eventually the time comes to get cleaned up and ready to oblige Mama for fancy beach pictures coming up next...


Birthday Donut for the Birthday boy!  We tried to go to the famous Donut Hole restaurant but the line was way longer than the patience we possess. So Krispee Kreme to the rescue!  

 I often think of Donut holes as biite size but in the mouth of a one year old they look huge!  This is also when it started raining :/
 Four years old on vacation to the beach and it rains.... quick thinking by Dad with a tip from Pastor Barry at our church lead us on a little road trip to the Naval Aviation Museum in Pensacola.  This turns out to be the best decision ever for this birthday boy and his Dad!

 At one point we all got to go into a simulator of an air craft carrier with the jets taking off.  All of us LOVED that part.  The wind blew our hair, the seats shook, and we smelled jet engine fuel.

 Jack checked out every little detail and always had find the engine.
 The rain cancelled the air show schedule for that day but I imagine it looked much like this. 

 Finding the engine...
 Look Savannah's the Bomb!
 So is Jack!  (Totally Grant's idea!)

 They had quite a few airplanes the kids could climb in and explore.
 So. Many. Airplanes.  Plus two more buildings and an airfield!

 About to take off...
 Even Grant couldn't resist climbing in...

 And like that wasn't enough for a special birthday we had promised him a go kart race.  I think both of them enjoyed the speed after a seeing all the planes earlier in the day.  Jack was so focused and loved helping Dad steer!  

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