Amelie at 12 years, Mia at 10 years, Desmond at 7 years, Miles at 5 years
August 14, 2016


Mia turned ten in May and we had a fun party for her. Here they're making colorful bottles of sand.



We did the photo booth again, and it was a huge hit. We used the green screen to swap out the background behind the kids, and added new backgrounds this year, like lasers and paparazzi.



Naomi found an organic u-pick strawberry farm, so for Mia's birthday we checked it out. We picked way more strawberries than we could eat, so we gave a bunch to the neighbors.



Amelie has a nice batch going, but she's just getting started.



We also planted a garden in the backyard this year, and this is a gigantic squash that Miles can barely lift. It's the size of a pumpkin.



Mia is really enjoying the birthday song.



We went to the Cherry Festival in Emmett around the middle of June, and it was a lot of fun. It was super-expensive with the ride bracelets and all the other rides you had to pay for, but we all had a lot of fun.



The ride bracelets let the kids go on as many rides as they wanted.



Miles took a pony ride, while Amelie interrogated them about how they were treating the ponies to make sure it was okay.



The Super Slide was the ride the kids did the most. No line and it's a lot of fun.



The hamster balls were one of those things you had to pay extra for, but it looks like a blast. I actually checked on to see if we could buy some to play with at home, and they were pretty reasonable, but the shipping cost was enormous, so for small quantities it didn't make sense.



Jumping on the bungee was Desmond's favorite thing to do, but since he wasn't doing any flips or anything, this video is of Mia doing back-flips.



One thing you can do for free at the fair is climb trees. Desmond and Miles are both crazy about climbing trees.



Amelie did two weeks at the Willows Edge farm camp, and she said next year she wants to do it all summer. They are a breeding farm for Norweigian Fjord horses. Sequoia is her friend from Orange County who came out to visit.



Amelie said she saw a horse being born during the farm camp, but I don't think it was this particular baby horse. Elsie is the baby horse's mama.



The farm is selling this horse, Elsie, which is Amelie's favorite horse. So we looked into buying Elsie for Amelie, and here Amelie is taking the horse for a test drive. Elsie just had a baby so she was just looking for her baby horse the whole time (who was in the arena the whole time, he's just not in this picture).

We ended up not buying Elsie because the owner wanted an answer right away and we had no time to figure out how it would all work.



In pet news, Amelie and Mia got a couple new bunnies, they are very cute when they're little.



This is Amelie with Luna. This is about as big as Luna will get, too. Naomi had her groomed so that's why she has the rubber band holding her fur on the top of her head.



After selling her last hedgehog, Amelie bought another one that was friendlier. His name is Tank.



Mia also got a couple of sugar gliders. They are very cute, but they make terrible pets. They have very sharp claws and all they do is climb around, and if you want to take one out of the cage and hold it, it's impossible because their claws grip so well. Then they bite you. She's already listed them on craigslist.



After farm camp, the girls did Suzuki music camp. Amelie is playing cello.



Mia is playing violin. They really enjoyed the music camp, it was pretty cool.



All summer the kids have been swimming in the neighborhood pool, which is just around the corner from us. Providing no babies pooped in the pool, it's a lot of fun. The girls got mermaid tails so they put those on once in a while and swim around as mermaids.



We had a block part for the 4th of July, and the kids had a bike parade and got to dress up.



Amelie is all dressed up and ready for the 4th.



Desmond is eating a marshmellow treat from the potluck. I made asparagus risotto for it, it was excellent.



I tried using a quadcopter to take some aerial shots, but a couple things got in the way. First, I am horrible at piloting a quad-copter, even though the one I have is super-stable. Second, with a lot of people around, it's very easy to run the quad-copter into somebody. So this is the footage I got, but it's not that great. I motion stabilized it, so that's why it looks like jello in some places.



We got some happy news that Naomi's sister Hannah had a new baby, so she drove out to Grant's Pass, Oregon, to visit and see the little guy. Hannah lives on a couple of acres and because Naomi's mom didn't make it up in time, she self-delivered the baby at home with her husband. Naomi and I self-delivered Amelie that way as well. Who needs a hospital to have a baby, come on, it's easy!



After Naomi's mom visited Hannah, she came out to visit us. This is her husband Neal, who is a skater, getting ready to see what the kids can do.



Naomi heard good things about Redfish Lake, about three hours north of us, so we decided to check it out. It's pretty awesome, and according to Naomi way better than the other lakes she's been taking the kids to.



Miles found a rock to climb and then jump off of.



Mia put this log in front of her sand sculpture as a break-water, and built this little sand sculpture with shells and sticks. She spent a long time on it, so she's proudly displaying it.



The town outside of the lake is very small, but they had a great ice cream place. We tried the gluten-free pizza at the pizza place, and totally got cross-contaminated.



Naomi had her gallbladder out earlier this year, but she was still in pain (but a different kind of pain) after the surgery. It turns out the gallbladder surgery irritated a muscle called the sphincter of oddi, which lets bile into the intestine. When the muscle spasms, it causes a lot of pain, so she flew to Seattle to Virginia Mason Hospital, to have a procedure done which cuts up the muscle so it can't spasm. Fortunately, the surgery went great. Unfortunately, they overdosed her on opiates afterwards, and she stopped breathing. She even asked the nurse before she got the dilaudid that pushed her over the edge, "are you sure I can handle more pain killers?". And she also asked, "shouldn't I be monitored?". But since nurses know better than the patients, they ignored her both times and literally killed her. She had to be revived, but fortunately her friend, Alyssa, was sitting next to her holding her hand, and saw she stopped breathing, and got the crash team in there in seconds (they were right outside her door, luckily), and they revived her with a re-breather.

Needless to say, the whole incident was very traumatic. She had an MRI of her brain and there was no brain damage, which happens after one minute of not breathing. Her oxygen was at 50%, which is basically dead. It's supposed to be 98-99%. You basically have almost no time to revive someone who has stopped breathing. If Alyssa hadn't been by her side, she'd be dead, because they weren't monitoring her. After this happened, then they put all kinds of monitors on her. They think the anti-nausea medication combined with the opiates to increase their effect, but basically they overdosed her.

Here her mom, Mary, is sitting with her. Today she's doing much better, and I haven't seen any effects of the overdose, she seems perfectly normal to me.



Caroline, her friend, came out after Naomi got back from Seattle to help her out, and this is her youngest boy Makana, with Mia as they hold this big toad they found at Cascade Lake.



The neighborhood associate hosts a get together every summer called National Night Out. Apparently cotton candy is on the menu. They also had a singer and a water slide, it was pretty fun. There was a fire-truck that sprayed water into the crowd (in a friendly way).



I just liked this picture of Miles, so I'm including it.



We took Caroline's two kids and our kids to Wahooz, which is a local fun park. The kids had a blast.



The lazer maze was pretty cool. You have to step over the lazer beams on your way in and out of the room. I was going to see how hard it would be to build one of our own.



This is the coolest air hockey table I've ever seen. As you play, all these small discs shoot out of the ramps on the left and suddenly there's like fifty discs banging around, it is so much fun.



The kids enjoyed the go-karts the most.

I liked this picture because you can see Mia holding her phone, like she's texting while she drives around the track. I think she's taking a video, but it looks funny.



I like this picture for the expression on Miles' face.



Okay, I swear, last go-kart picture. I'm including this one because Amelie spun the car out going around the turn. That happened a lot, though, to all the drivers.



Afterwards, enjoying some ice cream.



Mia has been wearing these mirrored sunglasses lately, and just really enjoying them, they make her look like a policeman. Here she is with her friend Josie (also home-schooled).

So until next time, let's see that license and registration!



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