It was also Jason's 14th birthday this week.
We had dinner, snacks and soda at the falls before we went for our walk
I love this...see we have plenty of bars...we must be on the Family Plan!
Different angle. This is at the base of the Waterfall. It is so pretty in the Provo Canyon.
Another good shot. Nothing like a great pose!
What a fun group of kids. We really have the best time together!
Andy turned around and got this one of me. Just behind me is the raging Provo River. It is unbelievably high and unbelievably fast moving.
I turned to look at Vitaliy as we were walking and he had his shorts pulled up really high like a geek. So, of course, everyone had to do it!
Jackson took this picture today and I thought he did a really good job. Well, you didn't see the dozens that I had to delete and of course the cute pictures of his feet or the extreme close up of his face that I just have to keep because they are so cute. He is quite the little photographer!
We have had another Missionary Discussion and it went really well. We didn't end up having an interpreter show up so Angie, our amazing friend who is fluent in Russian, came at a moment's notice and did an amazing job interpreting for us. (Thanks Angie...we always appreciate you and think you are amazing!) The boys were very responsive and it was great. The missionaries talked about how the Church was off the Earth for a while after the disciples all were gone and how it was restored during the restoration by Joseph Smith. I get a little nervous during the discussions. I am so afraid that the boys are going to stand up and say, "Whatever!" but that doesn't happen. I shouldn't worry. I need to keep remembering that it is the Spirit that is there teaching them and it is through the Spirit, if they are listening, that will confirm the truth of it all to them.
Sasha had a difficult start to the week in school and had a few too many trips to the Principals office. Actually that may have been last week. I can't remember anymore. I do know that by mid to end of the week, he was doing much, much better. He is doing really well and his English is getting better everyday. He has been asking me questions in English and does his very best to always talk to me in English. I am very happy for him. He loves to eat. Andy and I bought two big bunches of bananas and by the afternoon, we were down to two bananas. I couldn't believe it. We kind of felt sorry for Sasha because that many bananas at once can do a number on your innerds!
Vitaliy is also doing well in school and does not have any behavioral problems. He doesn't say, "That's no fair" anymore because the last time he said it I about went through the roof. I was so tired of hearing it and I made that very clear. His attitude is more positive each day. I often ask him how he is doing and he would say things like, "Not good" or "I don't know". He was always kidding around but it was getting old. I talked to him about being more positive. I told him that a positive attitude attracts positive. So now he is answering "good" and other things like that. I like that. He has been doing chores without complaint. Although, honestly, I haven't given him full blown chores yet. I have been easing him into it, kind of like the frog in the pot of water. Works pretty good I must admit. Vitaliy's English is very good and there is only need of a translator during the missionary discussions. We could probably do those without an interpreter for him but they would take twice as long. Today during Sacrament meeting he and I had a quick lesson on the bread and water and what it represents. Of course, he already knew that, because you know he knows everything about Jesus. It was still a good review though.
Summer vacation from school is almost here and we are a bit concerned that the kids are going to eat us out of house and home. We had to set a few rules about food. For example, everyone has to eat breakfast, lunch and dinner. And, a meal does not mean a half a loaf of bread. Make a sandwich, don't just eat the bread. Also, cereal is only a breakfast food and is not an all day grazing meal. Like I said, we are a little worried. I wish I had more cupboard space in the kitchen so I could hide a few things.
We finally sold our truck (we had payments on that) and our Denali. We had already bought an older 15-passenger van (ugh!!!). It really isn't too bad to ride in. It has a ton of miles on it but we are hoping to get some family trips out of it. Then we were able to buy a little VW Beetle for me to kick around in for all the errand running. Let me tell you, that car is way fun and oh so cute! It is also older, not the way old style, it is the New Beetle style, but we managed to get one that didn't have too many miles on it. Hopefully we can keep them all running good. But, I have to say that we are a favorite client of our mechanic. He told me once that he liked us so much that we are on his speed dial list. If anyone needs a good mechanic, I can give you a good reference.
I celebrated my birthday this week and we all went to Bridle Veil Falls and took a fun walk on the trial. It was nice to be able to go in one vehicle as a family somewhere together. The Provo River is crazy right now so I was a bit panicky on the walk. I pointed out the river to both Sasha and Vitaliy and then took my finger to my throat like I was slitting my throat. I just wanted them to know how dangerous the River could be. It was a great night and I enjoyed my birthday with everyone.
My favorite moment of the week this week was while driving in the car. I was in the passenger seat and Sasha was in the seat behind the driver. I turned around and smiled at him and he was all smiles back at me. In the moment I looked at him I felt so much love for him and I can totally feel that he knew how much I loved him and how happy it made him. All that in a moments glance. I absolutely loved that moment and it brought tears to my eyes.
Still working on rules of the house:
Again - we want you to not be hungry but you cannot constantly eat throughout the day.
You can ride your bike but when it is dark, you have to stop
Just because someone accidentally bumps or knocks into to you does not give you the right to attack
You need to eat what I give you because I know it is better than what you ate in Ukraine
and my favorite and the one that hasn't gotten better yet....it doesn't matter what anyone else is doing, just be concerned with yourself!
The boys are both very happy and it is obvious that they are both very glad to be part of a family that loves them so much. It has been a good week and I can see improvement in so many areas as time passes on. We appreciate all our family and friends who love and care for us so much. If it weren't for you guys, life would be a lot harder to get through!!!! We love you all!!!!