Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Here and Gone, Again...


We haven't seen him since Thanksgiving and for our family,
that's a long time...

Mark is currently living in Fiji and working on his Fulbright scholarship/research project.


He had to come home for a couple meetings and to go to orientation at the Masters program he will be attending this September.
We were glad he had to come home!


He has such a huge heart and a wonderful way with all of the little kids!


Everyone was so excited to see their "Marky"!


Of course he goes into all of the rooms and riles everyone up....
just when they are supposed to be calming down and going to sleep.
He is just like his Grandpa Mulvahill (Boppa to us)!


For the Mom and the Dad, it was a wonderful blessing to have him home!


He has to take off the shorts and flip flops and
put on some grown up clothes for the meetings and orientation.
He cleans up well!


We forgot to do our traditional Easter "egg fight" so we did it a couple nights later.


Have you ever done this?
It is so much fun!

We hard boil our eggs and then color them.
Everyone chooses an egg (usually it's the one you colored).
You hit the ends together.
If yours breaks- you lose.
If it is still intact you win... the first round.

Mark is playing with little Emily's egg ;-)


Here are our first round winners!
(the losers can continue to play with the other side of the egg that is not broken)


Hint: it is best to use the more pointed end of your egg first. 
Because of the air pocket in the wider end it could break easier.

I just shared with you something that took me only 40 years to learn.
Your way ahead of me already!


When you first hit and hear a crack you can't tell which egg it was?
Emma and Mia are checking out their eggs to see whose egg broke.


The final four!


The final TWO!


The suspense is killing us!


And we have one happy winner!
He gave all the credit to his niece EMILY!
(Since he used her egg!)

Don't worry, Joey didn't cry!
He happily ate his hard boiled egg!
He is such a happy go lucky little guy!
Our Joey lives life everyday with a smile on his face!


Of course we had to have a family gathering ; - )
Who ever could come over, did come over!
The Masters was on TV!
Hubby was in heaven watching the Masters with three of his big boys!
(Missed you Matt)


And all of the littles suddenly became golf fans!


We teased Johnny because no one was cuddling with him...
He seemed to be okay with it  ; - )


It's so wonderful to see the signs of spring!
Yes, it's the tulips, the buds on the tress, the grass turning green
AND
the trampoline gets set up!


Everyone wanted to jump with Mark!


Awwww, love you guys!


I had to get in one of the pics!
I'm always behind the camera (irritating other people as I tell them to smile).


And of course, what's a gathering without food flying through the air!
Can you see the grape in the upper right side?
Johnny is about to catch it in his mouth!


Yes, I did put a kaboosh on food flying through the air!
Yes, some MAY catch it...
but MORE miss it!


Do these two think alike or what?

They are deliberately refusing to smile...


Thank you boys!
You made your Momma happy!


Our Mark has a birthday this week!
We celebrated a little early!
We are getting to the point of assuming EVERY post will be a birthday post!


Love you all!


Make a good wish!


We are trying to figure out how many girlfriends he has 
since he blew out the 2 and not the 5?


I love the candid shots where people are done posing just being themselves!
Mark is talking to Ellie.
Billy and Kelly are laughing in the background.
Joey wants to eat the cake.
Melissa and Luke are trying to decide which one of them will lick the frosting off the candle.


Mark went on the adoption trip for these two boys!
Hubby and Mark did a good job and brought my boys home from China!
So thankful!


Once again he becomes a human jungle gym!


Brothers!
God had it all planned out from the beginning!
So thankful we were part of that plan!


Kelly is such a good sport and joins in on the fun!
Better them than us!
Their young strong backs can take it!


We wanted to take one more picture of everyone...
But Mark was "busy"...
So we waited...
and waited...
and waited...


And then we called...
and called...
and called...
for him...


And he was finally finished with "his business",
he joined us for the picture!

There is no privacy in this large family!


After the pic the two "bigger brothers" were commenting on how
strong the (so called) "little brother" was...


Johnny is playing college soccer.
He has never worked out but after a few injuries and getting pushed around on the field he decided it was time to be able to push back.
He has been eating healthy, exercising and lifting weights.


I think the two big bros just figured out...
he's no longer the "little" brother.
Don't mess with him guys!
He'll hurt ya!

Billy just said, "once soccer is over he'll go back to being scrawny, like us!

Love you boys either way!

Mark is back in Fiji now.
He is doing well, working hard and enjoying his time there.

We look forward to August when he comes home for good!

Monday, April 20, 2015

Our Easter 2015


Yes, I am a bit late with this post 
but better late than never!
I am trying to catch up from a very busy early April.
(and truthfully trying to heal from the loss of our two children...
it's hard folks...)


It was a blessed Easter!
Amazingly special because we brought up the gifts for the Thursday Church service - 
it was our first time and all of the children had a job to do.
It went smoothly and we all enjoyed being part of the service.



All of the church services were fantastic and the meaning of Easter came to life more than ever before...

Emily was adorable and loved the fun at our home!
But she wasn't too fond of being quiet in church!


The children all waited patiently as Emily had her first Easter egg hunt!
Oh my, how they wanted to jump right in and "help" her!


Everybody got to find 6 eggs!


Sweet girl had no idea what she was looking for!


But she started to catch on as we continue with the egg hunt!


No jellybeans or chocolate for her,
just puffs hidden inside!


She put EVERYTHING in her mouth.
Even when her Momma says no, she smiles and slowly puts it into her mouth!


This is the first group of egg hunters!


And this is the second group of egg hunters!

As usual we could not find the last egg- 
happens every year!


In the late afternoon more family members joined us for a celebration dinner!


So glad Billy could sneak away from work to be with us!


He is an accountant and it's(was) tax season!


He loves being an Uncle!


Hahahaha,
Guess who found the last hidden egg-
hours later!


It was a wonderful day but the next morning two very special people had to go back home...


Goodbye

; - (

Thank you for sharing so many special days with us!