S: Ellie: October 2010--April 2011
FC: Ellie: October 2010--April 2011 "It's not what happens to you, but how you react to it that matters." -Epictetus
1: 5th Grader | Kindergartner
2: Ethan's Classmates
3: Ally & Corry came over for a play date & you all dressed up and had a dance party. Then Ally and Ethan decided to be pirates. Grrrrr...... | Having a little fun
4: Ellie's New Glasses! | 5th grade reading requires students to read a lot of books. Although Ellie loves to read, she complained of headaches so we got her eyes checked. Sure enough, she needed glasses. She picked out these purple ones which looked nice. She did end up getting contacts too and likes them better for sports. | Sweet Girl
5: Pumpkin Patch | We had a blast at this pumpkin patch. We each took turns slinging pumpkins at a target out in a field. E came the closest in hitting one. They also had a huge corn maze we walked through before picking out some pumpkins and gourds. We picked out an apple gourd which was really cool.
6: It finally made it! | Ethan noticed in his Backyard magazine that kids can send in pictures they have drawn. He drew a pufferfish and we sent it in. For 8 months, we kept checking to see if his picture made it to publishing and it never did. But...on the 9th month it had made it! He was super excited & I was relieved! Good job E!
7: We found some cool bedroom ideas from IKEA so Dad and I took off one day to head to Minnesota. | Luckily, most everything came in boxes so it fit in the truck. Of course, we came back with other "finds" as well. | Purchasing a couch wasn't on the list but once we saw it, we had to get it! We thought it'd be fun since it pulls out to a little bed. It'd be great for sleep overs. | Ethan was pretty excited about his new paint color and his little tv on the wall. It's his own little "man Cave". | E's New Room
8: Cayla Fulcher | Covered Bridge Festival | Kara Christensen | Carter Tryon | Spelling Bee Contestants | We got to see Katie, Cayla, Maddie & Carson dance. George Washington Carver (actor) told stories about his life & pulled you kids up to help demonstrate his story. | Ellie was the last 5th grader standing but didn't place. We were proud of her.
9: Parade | E's favorite: The Shark Car
11: Honey Creek: | We had never been to Honey Creek before but it was really nice. We stayed in a cabin with Joe & Amy which was very spacious and each family had their own bedrooms. The pool area was awesome too. The kids loved it! We swam when we got there until it closed and again the next morning.
12: We went Trick or Treating around the square and then went over to the Kimballs for dinner. Ellie went trick or treating around town with Danny and her mom and then went to the Haunted House. | Mario & Dorothy | Ethan & Molly
13: Danny Barker, Ellie, Katie Barnes | We're off to see the wizard! | Momma Mia | Maddy Whitlow & Shelby McCullough | Maddie Kimball
14: Ellie played under the direction of Coach Pickering & Coach Stover as point guard and side guard. She does a really good job and her BB skills seem to improve each year. Go Sharks!!! | Basketball League:
15: THE TEAM: ALLY PICKERING SOPHIE STOVER ELLIE EASTER TAYLOR SHAHAN NATALIE HANSEN TORI MORTOZA GRACE MCDONALD CAYLA FULCHER
16: I S U | We finally got to sneak away and see an ISU basketball game. Ellie enjoyed watching the game and Ethan, well, not so much. He was more interested in what he could eat next. On one of his trips to the concession stand he noticed the #1 hand and bought it with his own $6. As we were leaving we ran into Cy and got your picture taken with him. That was definitely the highlight of the night.
17: Go Ellie Go!
18: Hanging This Year's Ornaments | Ethan picked a kitten. | Ellie picked a softball girl.
19: Parks and Rec Basketball League | We debated about having Ellie play for this league since she was already on the travel team but she wanted to play. Ally and Taylor were on her team which made it more fun. Greg and sometimes Andy and your dad helped coach. Ethan entertained himself with his DS during the games. | After one of the games, Craig Briney's team was short one player and so he asked Ellie to play on their team. She played with some older girls with talent and loved it! She played really well with them.
20: Travel Team
21: Ellie's First Band Concert | During summer band students needed lessons so Ellie took hers from G'ma Easter. She picked it up very quickly.
22: Piano Recital | Practicing (and Dancing) before the recital | Ellie played "Have a Holly Jolly Christmas" by herself, played "Up on the House Top" with Dad and sang "Jingle Bell Rock" with G'ma playing the piano. As always, she did a great job!
23: Ethan played "Jingle Bells" really well and then bowed twice afterwards. Everyone laughed! Good job E! | Ethan's very first recital!!!
24: Making sugar cookies for Santa!
25: One morning in December we awoke to this beautiful photo. I can't remember what it was but something in the solar system had taken place during the night. f
26: All I want for Christmas is ... | 3 days before Christmas you two decided to open your gifts from each other.
27: Our Family Christmas | Somebody is excited to open gifts!
28: Ellie's Favorites: Guitar Hero & I Home | Ethan's Favorites: The Claw & Mario Wii Game
30: Feeling so Blessed
31: Gifts from Santa
32: Sisters | And Mom
33: At G'pa & G'ma Hoskeys | Christmas | 2010
34: Christmas Eve in Montour | Pogo Stick | Gift cards for Itunes & Bookstore | Mario shirt & bedazzled softball
35: A game Ellie had to have! | Trying to get G'ma to think outside the box! | Sonic DS Game | Comfies for G'pa & Bass Pro Shop gift card
36: Before and After | We made Mom try on her new shirt, jewelry and purse that is "outside her box" and she looked great. We also had her put on Ellie's stylish glasses which made her look hip-hop and younger. All of us girls agreed that new glasses are a must!!!
37: Sledding Tradition
38: Christmas At G'pa & G'ma Easters | We had Christmas with G'pa & G'ma Easter on Christmas Day. We got Grandpa some comfy jammies and gift cards to his favorite restaurants in Florida. Grandma got an afghan with all the grandkids pictures on it. She started getting teary eyed when she saw it.
40: Grandpa and Ellie played Christmas songs on their saxes. | This page was created by Ellie Easter
41: A Birthday Party for Jesus!
42: We went to a hotel in Des Moines with the Pickerings and Shahans for New Year's Eve. The next morning our family was leaving for Florida so we didn't get much sleep! | Goodbye 2010
43: After swimming for 6 hours the kids changed into their jammies and then played games. Ethan & Molly played DS. The adults played Taboo which was a lot of fun! We all had a great time!
44: Naples | Florida | As soon as we arrived in Naples we went to Ruby Tuesday's for lunch & then you guys went swimming! The next day we went to the park so Ellie could practice BB and Ethan could play in the sun! | 2011
45: We went to the beach & after playing awhile we all took naps in the sun. It felt wonderful! | E's sleeping! | What kind of tree is this? We noticed it on our walk back.
47: Searchin' 4 Shells | We went out early one morning while the tide was low to find shells. (Well not E. He didn't want to come.) We found a ton of sand dollars and shells with live creatures in them. The orange blob came out of a big shell that had opened up. It was something we've never seen before.
49: Carribean Gardens | We hadn't been back to this zoo for a few years and Ethan wanted to go so we did. It's one of the best zoos, that's for sure. When we came to the monkeys they started hollering "Whooop whooop" really loud! Everyone walking by had to stop and laugh at them. The blonde one was sitting on the top pole and the black one wanted up there so they started hollering at each other. It was the funniest thing we'd ever heard so we got it on video too. Listen to it and it will make you laugh. Whooop!
50: Eating out with Uncle Kermit and Aunt Vanna. We ate at the Long Horn, Ruby Tuesdays & Big Al's--all our favorites.
51: Of course there's always ice cream too! | We tried a new pizza place that uses all ingredients from Italy. The mozz. cheese was awesome!
52: Marco Island | We had never been to Marco Island so we ventured out for the day. We found this beach which was nice but it was on a canal not the ocean. It was still nice being in the sun.
53: I kept seeing people walking across this mucky canal & since it wasn't very deep we tried it. One the other side a sandy path led us to this beautiful beach.! It was like a remote beach because only a few people were there. We found the most beautiful shells! | Walking thru the canal! | The hike across was well worth it. It's beautiful! | Ellie found the bathroom. | We vowed to always go back to this beach if we vacation in Naples again! It's a must!
54: Getting a little Rest and Relaxation! | Ellie & G'ma reading.
55: The weather was perfect! We swam everyday but one! We love it here & dread going home to freezing temps!
56: Squeezin' each other! Oh what love! :)
57: Our last day. | We went to the outlet mall to check out the Under Armour store. Found lots of shirts for you kids and a few for mom and dad. | Celebrated G'ma's Birthday a day early. We got her a shirt that changes in the sun!
58: Celebrating Ethan's birthday a few days early at school. And...he was very excited! These were the treats he took. Yum!
59: Ethan's very first Birthday Lunch at school! We brought him a Casey's Sub and orange juice---his favorite.
60: Happy 7th Birthday Ethan! | Waking up to streamers all over your room! | Opening presents before church!
61: The Mario shirt was your favorite! | Having breakfast on the birthday plate!
62: Ellie had 2 BB games on E's Birthday!
63: Birthday lunch | In between games, we went to Applebee's to celebrate Ethan's birthday. All he wanted was to go somewhere that sang Happy Birthday to him, but Applebee's only gave him a free dessert. Ethan decided we'd find a different restaurant for supper.
65: After the last game, we ran Ellie to Bethany's so she could spend the night, then we went back to Des Moines for another try at someone singing Happy B-day to Ethan. We went to The Lonestar and they SANG!!! Even got a little "Yee-Haw" afterwards along side another dessert! After that we went to Target because Ethan wanted to check out a Mario game.
66: I had made the Toad cake (from Mario) for E's b-day but he wanted to wait until the next day to celebrate with Ellie and G'ma & G'pa Easter. I think he was a bit tired from all the celebrating we did the day before!
67: G'ms always makes us Rice Crispy cakes for our b-days so we decided to make one for her b-day. | And...she loved it! Happy 74th Birthday!
68: Basketball Camp
69: Ethan was very excited to attend a Basketball Camp that was coached by Coach Pickering. They had camp every Saturday morning for 6 weeks. He learned to dribble, run and dribble, and shoot. On the last day of Camp, they played competitive games. They were divided into teams and had to race around cones while dribbling, count and shoot for a minute, and played Red Light Green Light while dribbling. He had a great time. We are so proud of him and excited that he's liking sports.
70: Ethan's "All-Boy" Mario Birthday Party! | Mario Cake from Dessert Factory
71: Ethan wanted just boys at his party with the exception of Ellie & Taylor helping. The guest list included: Kael Blanchard, Seth Gardner, Zeke Hoven, Charlie McDonald, Luke Heithoff & Jack Kimball.
72: Game Time! | Playing Mario on the Wii. | It was your dad's idea to play "Pin the Tail". He even printed the donkey off on his computer! Go Dad! | Playing "Drop the Clothespin". This was a b-day game we played as kids and surprisingly, all the boys liked it too.
73: Presents! Presents! Presents! | Everyone wanted Ethan to open their present first so we ended up drawing names for the order of gift opening! When finished, the boys grabbed the swords, ran & jumped while sweat ran down their face. Boy parties are WAY different than girl parties. Thankfully, cousin Elijah was here to help too!
74: Playing Guitar Hero with the Kimballs | Headbanger Joe & Singing Sally
75: W A U K E E T O U R N A M E N T | The first game we played "the giants" from Indianola; they were ALL tall. Despite the height difference, our girls played hard 'til the end but came up short in baskets. | Game 1: 11:00 Winterset VS Indianola
76: Game 2: 5pm Winterset Vs Johnston Heat | We lost which meant we play again at 8:00 p.m.
77: Game 3: 8:00 p.m. Winterset VS Dallas Center | They won this game! Yippee
78: Happy Valentine's Day | Chocolates & a Heart shaped cookie Yum!
79: Mario cards, Headband & Coupons 4 u both | Ethan's Valentine's Box for school! A Love boat! | Coupons good for: Red box movie, backrub, 15 minutes past bedtime, free IPOD game, Sleep in mom & dad's bed 1 night, & a free room clean
81: Shawn Johnson was at a Drake BB game so we went and invited Blake! He was in awe. | E on the webcam!
82: Winterset Optimist Tournament | Lost to Indianola
83: Ellie #2 | Beat Earlham | Ethan had enough BB so he played his DS
84: AAU Volleyball
85: Ellie had never played Vball before now and she loved it! I don't think there's a sport she doesn't like to play. | All the girls had a good time. As a parent it was fun to see the girls playing a totally different sport. | Kara | Ally | Taylor | Sophie | Danny | Tori | Cayla | Natalie C. | JoAnn | Grace
86: Band Solo Contest | Immediately after playing Volleyball the girls had their band solos. It was hard to shut off the adreneline to play but Ellie did great! She got a 1+! | While we waited for Ellie's turn to play, Dad had to show us his locker.:)
87: Riding Lessons We had gotten Ellie some riding lessons for Christmas & so she took them in the spring with Corry Pickering. Ellie loves to ride but the lessons weren't all about riding. She learned about horses, how to brush them, saddle them, names of certain pieces used on a horse as well as how to ride properly and lead. She loved it!
88: Hit one out of the park! | GO TEAM! | Beaverdale League
89: Ally | Tori
90: Coach Pickering tying Ellie's shoe on 3rd base! | Taylor catching for Ellie | Go Sharks
91: 11 years old!
92: Awww.....this makes mom smile.
93: Ellie convinced us to let her open a few presents before her actual birthday, so we did. She had picked out a lot of clothes from Justice but got a few surprise presents as well. What she wanted was a horse or a cell phone but we told her she wasn't getting either of those! :)
94: Surprise Party! | We had told Ellie that after age 10 the bday parties had to end. If she wanted one or two friends to spend the night, that would be fine. This year we were going to stick to the plan but then realized her bday fell on a Thursday and they didn't have school the next day. (Sigh). So we decided to give her a surprise party for the final one!!!! All week, Ellie was really complaining that she couldn't have a party. She was mad, stomped off and continued to beg. I knew she was disappointed but also knew she would love the end result. Perhaps it would be a humbling experience.
95: All of Ellie's friends were at Pizza Hut waiting for her to come. When she walked in they all met her at the door. It was at that moment when the tears started rolling down her face. She was one ball of emotions: shocked, excited, surprised, happy, etc. We definitely surprised the birthday girl!
96: Happy Birthday Ellie! | Natalie | Sophie | Ally | Ellie | Bethany | Jo Ann | Grace C. came a little later & Danny was there in spirit.
97: Cayla | Tori | Maddie | Kara | Grace M. | Taylor | Corry | Molly
98: Melissa & Greg and Nicky & Andy were at the party also and they helped us transport the girls back to our house to play and eat cake. Lori Fulcher stayed for a little so she could see your surprise reaction! | Playing Just Dance 2 on the Wii
99: Ellie requested Jello Cake | 14 girls + Ethan & Molly