Wednesday, July 6, 2016

Happy 4th of July: Our Independence Day

Happy 4th of July from the Bowerman Family! We decide to put my awesome camera to use and take a little family photo shoot in front of our beautiful gigantic American flag. Matt was given this flag during his time at Fort Drum in upstate New York. He was thrilled to finally have a place to display this beautiful flag and what better backdrop could one ask for on this wonderful holiday?!

The Boys Birthday Bash

As we have in the past, we once again had a joint birthday party for Elijah and Noah. They celebrated their 5th and 3rd birthdays with a giant inflatable water slide and a Superhero (mainly Iron Man and Captain America) theme party. We had many friends join us and despite the weather being very agreeable, the water was quite chilly. Nonetheless, the boys had a fantastic birthday and some great memories.

And what's more, our amazing friend and former sitter affectionately known as Cakelyn came for a surprise visit. The boys were shocked when the saw her walking up in the backyard! We had such a memorable weekend all around and are very thankful for the friends that were able to join us and celebrate!

Tuesday, July 5, 2016

Adventures in Indiana

After my parents many drives to Georgia from Indiana, I finally worked up the courage to try the drive myself. It was time for our annual (and I wish it were more often) visit to Indiana and we drove the Suburban and it was GREAT! We departed around 5am, en route to Smyrna, TN, where we would be picking up my dad at a local hotel. Dad had taken a Greyhound bus (hilarious stories) the night before and was waiting to meet up at the halfway mark to finish the drive with us. The plan was perfect and the boys thoroughly enjoyed finding Papa, taking a break and a swim at the hotel pool! I'm very grateful it worked out and it was incredibly helpful having him with us for the last half, as it came with more challenges. 

Nonetheless, we made it safely and in time for dinner. The boys were jumping with excitement when we arrived and pretty much the entire time we were there. Although we drove out without Matt, he was able to fly out at the end of the work week to join us for several days, before making the return trip together. 

The entire week was filled with fun activities, as well as fun at the house. We had a fantastic visit to the Gerber Home and finally (really long overdue) met Lucy's sweet boy, Jude. The boys loved playing with him, although I'm not sure Jude loved them playing with all of his toys. Sally helped all four boys feed the ducks on their pond, find the cat, play with play dough, and so much more. 

The boys loved the car track carpet and Jude's great selection of cars and trucks
Noah loved looking for the ducks and trying to throw corn at them. He didn't quite grasp the concept that in order for the ducks to come up at eat, he would have to stay back. 

Elijah, Noah and Jude loved this little power wheels, so much that turns were forcibly taken. It was so hard for Jude, but he did so well. 
Asher loved the swing Sally hung for him. It used to be for her girls! 

Asher loves his Papa and all the time they shared on this visit. 
There are so many fun activities at Lala and Papa's house, including the awesome zipline! Furthermore, Juju dropped in for a surprise visit and the boys and Lala were beside themselves. As soon as Juju had his play clothes on, the fun began. 
And continued...
We had the pleasure of joining the Ladyman Family at their beautiful home on Lake Lemon for a day. They were so kind to invite us and entertain this crowd all day! The boys loved playing with Aubrianna by the water, in the hot tub and their favorite was the pontoon and speed boat rides. Juju was able to get up on a slalom ski a few times, proving he's still awesome!
Asher had a great time at the lake as well, napping on the boat and splashing in the water. 
Noah had a mild obsession with this paddle and enjoyed carrying it around for at least an hour prior to getting on the boat. There were so many things for all of us to enjoy and it was such a blessing to get to have create these memories with our families.
It was a picture perfect day and having Juju there with us made it even more special!

Noah took to the water like a fish! Miss Debi jumped in with Noah and soon, Juju and Elijah joined the fun. 

Although it's been since 2012 since Lindy and I saw each other in person, it's like we haven't missed a moment when we get together again. Sonoma and Cora had been staying in Bloomington for a couple days and Lindy was passing through to pick them up. The timing was perfect and we had several hours to visit and play together. The kids had a great time playing with the water guns, doing Jenga with Papa and chowing down on some Papa Murphys Pizza.

These kids were such a cute group and so photogenic! I can't wait to meet Lindy's third baby girl! 
Friends for our entire lives. It's so wonderful to have had this visit with all the kids. Now if we could just sync up a rendezvous where Matt will be present and can finally meet Lindy!!!!!
As the weekend arrived and Matt did also, we were able to plan a family gathering and amazingly enough, all the Gerber girls were able to attend at the same time! With busy work schedules, family demands and geographic separation, it was amazing that they were all able to come together at the same time for our visit.
Lizzie and Jeff
The beautiful Gerber women

Jude loves his Nana! 
We also wrapped two birthday celebrations into the visit, as Elijah's birthday was just prior and Noah's just after the visit. 
Noah loved everyone singing Happy Birthday to him-his face just beams! 
Lala and Papa bought the boys awesome Ironman and Captain America outfits! They were instantly wearing them and wore the masks around most of the day as well. We are definitely going through a Superhero phase and I love it!
Another awesome activity at Lala and Papa's house is the incredible train set in the basement. The boys went down several times to see Papa run the trains. They really enjoyed pressing the buttons (all of the buttons) to make the accessories run, like the log loader, saw mill and ice house. 

In true Noah fashion, he enjoyed playing dress up in Lala's closet as well. He picked this great pair of boots out for himself and wore them around for a bit. Because of the slight heel, watching him walk was pretty hilarious! 
One of the reasons we planned our visit during this time was so the boys could attend the Strawberry Festival. It's directly across the street from Lala and Papa's house and the boys loved it! Firetrucks and other vehicles everywhere, snow cones and more. 
We also had a chance to visit the Indianapolis Childrens' Museum, which is one of the only Childrens' Museums that still has historical displays instead of everything being a new interactive pretend play display. The boys (and I) had an awesome time and it began with the dinosaurs standing outside looking into the museum.  
They also had a REAL TRANSFORMER, Bumblebee, in the entryway and these great cutouts for the children. 
Noah was showing us his scary transformer face. Love this kid!
Papa's transformer face was a little scarier
Lala with Elijah back in 2012
Lala with Noah and Elijah 2016. 

Elijah riding the same carousel back in 2012
Noah loved the carousel! We both rode our own horses and smiled the entire time. 
Elijah loved the Indy Race car back then as well
But now, he's big enough to sit in it by himself!