Spotlight: Joshua


Dad: Tonight we honor Joshua.

Andrew: For being Joshua.

Josh: Give me highly expensive gifts!

Jacob: How about a post on Mom’s blog? That’s highly expensive in love.

Katey: We’re just talking about Josh?

Josh: Just me!

Meri: You have no fuzzies in your toes Mom!

Andrew: I like that Josh likes to play on my Minecraft world. It’s fun to play with other people.

Dad: Cooperative play is always more fun.

Katey: Is it my turn?

Meri: Round and around with peoples.

Katey: I like to play with Josh and he is very kind! Can you add to mine that he’s funny??

Caleb: I like to do dishes with Josh. We did them today.

Meri: I love about Josh that he makes me food. Sandwiches and only water. And he has a cool water bottle.

Hyrum would probably say: abahah buhah josh (Hyrum’s sleeping at the moment. He’s prepping for his third time sleeping through the night – in a row, ah yeah!)

Dad: One of the things I love about Josh is that he is very willing to do things with anybody at any age. At scout camp he was out canoeing with boys older than him and boys younger than him. It didn’t matter and he was friendly with everybody. He shared his treats with everyone too.

Mom: Josh is such a kind soul. He’s a big helper with his baby brother and has a funny, dry sense of humor. His favorite photo he took at scout camp is a close-up of hamburgers. (My boy!) It’s a pretty sweet shot. Love that he takes his talents and develops them – from playing the trombone to perfecting his pancake flipping skills.

Jacob: I love how that no matter what Josh does, he does it enthusiastically. Whether he’s playing, imagining, going to scout camp, biking… it’s all done with energy.

Autumn: Josh is a great sharer.

Josh: I’m innocent!!!

Drewby: There was glitter everywhere.


Josh right after Stacy, our photographer, told us she had captured the family photo, the one – the “money shot”.

Photos by Stacy Rose Photography

Spotlight: {Jacob}

It’s Jacob’s birthday and time for his spotlight!! Perfect.

Grandma (visiting): Jacob is very kind when we play chess. He is very kind when he beats me in chess.

Daddy: One thing that I love about Jacob is that when I tease him he is starting to catch on. He is maturing enough to appreciate my amazing humor. Oh wait, this is Jacob’s spotlight.

Josh: I love Jacob’s protective nature. Whether he is protecting us when babysitting or keeping his Doritos safe.

Caleb: Jacob loves me.

Daddy: How do you know?

Caleb: *shrug* He loves.

Autumn: I have one word to say: Smart!

Jacob: Okay, I can live with that.

Caleb: Jacob, you are such a good boy!

Katey Belle: *whispering into Daddy’s ear* I like Jacob because he plays games with me.

Andrew: I love Jacob because of his big smile.

Jacob: Personally, I prefer small grin.

Mommy: Jacob is constantly asking me how I’m doing. He offers to help – with babysitting so I can shower or read. He also is more than willing to help with chores around the house and never complains.

Meri: Candy.

Grandma: Does Jacob share candy with you?

Meri: Yeah.

Jacob is a scholar and a gentleman. He is such a knowledgable young man that is kind to everyone. We love his quick mind, ready to please manner, happy bursts of laughter and that he was brave enough to ask for a later bedtime on his birthday with an “official” document. Still in talks – we’ll see how it plays out. 😉

Spotlight: { Mommy }

Daddy: Meri what is something you love about your mommy?

Meri: Rainbow ice cream! (whispered intensely)

Daddy: Mommy feeds you rainbow ice cream?

Meri: Yeah!!! (not whispered)

Caleb: Orange slices. I mean I love she feeds me oranges.

*Jacob raising hand*

Daddy: Jacob we’re going youngest to oldest.

Jacob: But everyone takes mine.

Katey: I love that mommy gives us hugs and kisses and makes stuff for us. Well, not sewing stuff. But she makes the food!

Drewby: I love mom because her smile. It’s really big!

Autumn: Yes? I like mom because she’s awesome. I can’t think of all the ways. …Yoga! And she’s a really good cook.

Josh: I love mom because she gives the kids an education before they go to public school. I also love mom for her Chicago deep dish pizza. And I also say whatever Jacob is going to say.

Jacob: I hereby forbid you from annexing my comment. But there is someone that is older than Josh and younger than me that needs to comment.

Duke: I love it when she gives me bacon fat.

Jacob: My turn…

Autumn: ooh, I’m excited to hear Jacob’s.

Jacob: I love mom because she’s always willing to lend me a hand. Whether it’s math homework or doing my chore or whatever. And I don’t mean whatever disrespectfully. It means she’s always there.

Daddy: I love mommy because she is willing to do the hard things that a mommy needs to do sometime to take care of her family. And she will always, well, almost always – give the last special treat away to someone. She also rarely thinks about herself before someone else – she’s selfless and I love that about her.

Caleb: And one more thing I like mom for… she let me stir the pancake batter today!

Becky is an amazing cook (that hasn’t been mentioned yet…), a lover of all things that are sparkly, loves everyday moments & capturing them and finds Ocean Spray CranGrape SodaStream refreshing & irresistible. Her favorite activity is enjoying a quiet afternoon in the sunshine with a good book.

Spotlight: { Daddy }

Caleb: I love you Daddy. I love your tickles!

Drewby: I like Dad because… um… um…

Daddy: Is it so hard to think of something?

Jacob: He’s trying to think from the eternity of possibilities.

Drewby: I like Dad because he smiles a lot!

Autumn: He is not a scowly dad! Josh is the only one brave enough to tickle him though.

Daddy: He has a death wish. I think I am ticklish because I got it from Grandma Pipes. She’s ticklish! Grandpa Pipes was not though. At all. It was so frustrating.

Autumn: I love Dad because of his cuddles and his whiskers!

Jacob: I love Dad because even though he is always busy with a bunch of work he always finds time for each of us and he gives us as much as he can.

Daddy: I try. Sometimes I don’t find enough time, but I try.

Katelyn: I like Dad because of his smiles and his hugs.

Daddy: Katey is so sweet. She always gives me a kiss on my cheek and a hug as she’s getting out of the car at school.

Josh: I love Dad because after searching the universe of endless possibilities I found out he is very reasonable and persuasive.

Mommy: Not sure how to add to those…

Josh: Wait! There’s something else I want to add on to Jacob’s. Dad spends his fraction of his time for me tickling me.

Daddy: Only when you’re asking for it!

Mommy: Daddy does have a great amount of love for each of us! He’s patient and kind and patient some more. Highly devoted! And he’s a huge tease that likes a good time. *Right now Meri is getting the tickling & her toes are being devoured.* He’s also one for a good deep discussion and a late night snacker. An amazing and willing masseuse and gets a sparkle in his eye when experimenting with photography. We love our mister!

Josh: What are we supposed to do while Mom thinks and types out hers?

Daddy: You can just reflect on how awesome I am.

Jacob: Okay… …that’s probably enough time.

Daddy: * laughing*

{Thankfully Daddy can take the teasing too.}

Spotlight: { Meri }

Katey: What I love about Meri Jane is that she is cute and so playful!

Drewby: I love Meri because she laughs a lot.

Caleb: What?

Daddy: What do you love about Meri?

Caleb: Her kisses and her hugs. She hugs like this. And sometimes she falls down and gets hurt. One time we put cushions down by a chair and we all three (Meri, Katey and Caleb) fell at the same time and we did not get hurt. So I love 4 things about Meri.

Autumn: I like Meri… because… of her smiles. She is almost always smiling and her giggles!!

Jacob: I love Meri because of her vocabulary. She is such a fast learner and will use a word like as if she’s always used it.

Josh: One word that describes Meri? Cute. Lovable. Playful.

Jacob: Um, that’s three Josh.

Josh: Is this your comment or mine?

Drewby: Hi Mom. *wave*

*And now a full-on confession about how Josh and Drewby borrow Daddy’s socks when they can’t find any. News to Daddy.*

Autumn: I also love Meri’s personality. She is so adorable.

Daddy: Meri Jane.

Meri: What?

Daddy: I love your indomitable spirit and how you find things so funny!

Meri: Kitty, kitty!

Mommy: Meri is always up for a challenge or adventure. She is also a very good memorizer and expresses herself and feelings so well. My favorite is when she jumps in the air and says “Yes!!”, then crouches down again, jumps up her whole body length again and says “Yes!!”

We love having such a sweet & feisty sweetheart in our family. She can hold her own and is such a sweet cuddler and lover of long stories. She knows so many body parts including chin, elbow and bum. She also adores ice cream and knows how to get our family eating it more than we used to – little miss charmer.

Meri: Look!

Spotlight: {Caleb}

Daddy: You ready? Please be thinking of something you love about Caleb. I will start! I love Caleb…

Caleb: I love Dad because he eats hot dogs so fast.

Daddy: Caleb, I love it when you help Meri and give her treats. When you share with her and help her do something that she needs help with.

Jacob: Excuse me. Not like toot excuse me, but can I go next excuse me.

Jacob: I love Caleb’s energy and enthusiasm. Whenever he sets his mind to something he always gets it done no matter how long it takes.

Caleb: The coconut canon is a slice of butter.

Josh: It’s a slab.

Daddy: It’s called a pat. Focus people, focus. It’s almost bedtime.

Meri: Me bed. Mommy’s bottle.

Josh: I love Caleb’s active imagination.

Autumn: I love Caleb because of his laugh… and his funny jokes… and his imagination.

Drewby: I love Caleb because he likes to play a lot. Play with games.

Katelyn: Is it my turn? Is there anybody else?

Caleb: There are three ones left. Meri, Mommy and Katey!

Mommy: Caleb is soo smart. He currently loves science books and is quick to grasp concepts. He has been pointing out solids, liquids and gases… and is almost always right. He is very goal oriented if there is a reward he wants to get to and yes – his imagination is charming.

Daddy – to Meri: Do you love Caleb?

Meri: Uh-huh!

Daddy: Good enough.

Katelyn: I like Caleb because he is so playful and happy and stuff like that.

Meri: Mess. Whisker mess. (playing with Daddy’s chin).

Meri: Love Caleb. Mommy love Caleb… and me. Nose.

We love our humming-during-every-song-during-the-Primary-Program little man. He keeps our family – and the neighbors laughing with his outdoor nature shenanigans and is just so much fun! Love our sweet, active three-year-old.

Spotlight: {Katey Belle}

Autumn: I love Katey because she likes to play lots of games and she also likes to go to school a lot.

Meri: I funny! Funn-y! (bouncing on a ball quite excitedly)

Caleb: I love Katey because she plays board games and brushes her teeth.

Jacob: I love Katelyn because of her laugh. A high pitched squeal you can’t get out of your head.

Katey: One time I laughed at myself. At Grandma’s house because I went like this and sticked out my tongue and looked in the doorknob. Ahh, wahhah, ahhhh.

Daddy: Was it a shiny doorknob?

Katey: *head nod* Golden!

Daddy: By her kitchen?

Katey: *head nod*

Daddy: I thought so. That would be the perfect doorknob for that.

Joshua: What I love about Katey is her vocabulary because it is increasing every year.

Mommy: Joshua took mine.

Daddy: Caleb! He shoved his toothbrush up my nose – what a stinker. Caleb, put your toothbrush in your mouth.

Katey: Don’t do that! It has Daddy’s boogies on it.

Andrew: I love about Katey that she always has a big smile.

Joshua: Not when she’s crying.

Andrew: Well, not always.

Mommy: Katey does have a large vocabulary. 🙂 She is very articulate and can express herself well. She tells very detailed stories and with great facial expressions. She crafts the most beautiful things out of napkins and paper and tape and colored pencils. And when we ran out of tape she used stickers and made it work. Very resourceful, crafty and fun.

Autumn: What about toothpicks?

Mommy: Oh yes – and toothpicks.

Katey: And I invented gummy bear suckers!!

Daddy:  I love Katey Belle’s beautiful cascading curls.

We love our sparkly, soup-loving, story-reading, sweetheart of a princess.

Spotlight: {Drewby}

Daddy: One thing I love about Andrew is that he always has a smile for anyone he meets. Anybody he talks to usually

Meri:  DADDY! {She found a pretzel. Very exciting.}

Daddy: Usually gets a smile right away. Doesn’t matter if he’s just barely met them or if he’s known them forever. He’s as cheerful as they come and always friendly.

Jacob: I love that Andrew has such a sense of humor. He understands a lot of jokes that people his age might not understand. He’s pretty darn smart too.

Katey: I like him because he is kind and friendly. And funny! My leg hurts.

Daddy: Did you bump it?

Katey: No, it just hurts inside of my skin.

Daddy: Sorry sweetie.

Caleb: I love about Andrew coloring.

Daddy: You love his coloring?

Caleb: *Head nod.*

Autumn: I’ll go! I like Andrew because he likes to play a lot of games like Monopoly and Just Dance 3.

Josh: What I love about Andrew is that he is always willing to play dead if I ask him too.

Drewby: *flop – with tongue hanging out*

Mommy: Drewby is such a sweetheart. He cares how people are feeling and doing. He loves to talk with and engage with people. He asks questions and loves to hear and tell stories. He also eats like a horse and has a nearly bottomless pit in his belly.

Meri: Ball! MEOW! Mine.

We love our fun-loving, smile-inducing, junk-drawer-searching-treasure-finding mister Andy-roo!


Spotlight: { Autumn }

Caleb: I love about Autumn swinging on the rope!

Joshua: Thanks to Travis and Liz we have a couple new toys (broken swing with hanging ropes…)

Katey: Autumn plays with me!

Meri: *Squeal* – Someone is getting tickled.

Jacob: I like Autumn’s sense of humor. It’s on the goofball side.

Joshua: Is that Dad’s side or Mom’s side?

Jacob: She doesn’t have dark hair, so it’s gotta be the Pipes. However, I’m the most sarcastic.

Katey: Aim at Meri’s target – it’s her belly button!

Joshua: I love about Autumn that she is fun and always willing to play in the treehouse with me.

Katey: Actually, there is another thing! For what I love about Autumn is that we share a bed. A bunk bed. And… I like that her watch beeps and wakes her up.

Drewby: I love about Autumn is that we play outside a lot together.

Mommy: Autumn is creative and independent and good at following directions. She has a new art book that is so fun. She has made a mask and a cute card. She gathers the supplies and makes them all by herself – start to finish. That’s a good skill to have.

Caleb: You’re a nouget. (to Mommy… I’ll just take that as a compliment.)

Daddy: One thing that I love about Autumn is that she is always willing to help her brother or her sister if they need to go to the bathroom or get a drink at church. She is always willing to be a buddy with whomever she is assigned and she is always helpful with her brothers and sisters.

Meri: Bye! Slide! Autumn!


Spotlight: {Joshua}

Katey: I love Joshua because he lets me sleep during his spotlight. (Sounded suspiciously like Jacob’s voice.)

Jacob: I love Josh because…

Daddy: Because he lets me sleep through his spotlight…

Jacob: No! I love Josh because he has a very smart mind and disgusting, realistic sound effects.

Daddy: *singing* (serenading Meri and describing her actions.) I closed my eyes, drew back the curtain, ah-a-ah, and found a binky. Even though it’s not mine. Then I stomped on my sleeping sister to see if I could wake her… for my brother’s spotlight.

You can call me the lyrical gangsta.

(I promise – none of this is made up. 😉 )

Caleb: I love Joshua because he does the spotlight at nighttime. And I love Josh because he makes cookies.

Josh: I roll over him like a rolling pin and tickle him like I’m putting sprinkles on.

Caleb: And then he puts me in an oven and eats me! …and he makes burritos.

Me: What’s a burrito? (thinking it’s something like making cookies…)

Caleb: You know… things on a tortilla.

Andrew: I love Josh because he trades Legos with me.

Autumn: I have mine! And no one’s taken it!!! He reads stories to the girls when Mom and Dad are gone. Sometimes he makes up stories too.

Jacob: Tell them the height of your story-telling career.

Joshua: Foo-Foo the Bunny Rabbit with his magical death lazer. The good guy in the story is Professor Fluffernut and his invisibility cloak of epicness.

Daddy: I love Josh because he is one of the few people that is brave enough to tickle me back and it gives me a great reason to tickle him mercilessly.

Mommy: Joshua is so sweet to his little brothers and sisters. As his big brother is getting older and more involved in activities Joshua has stepped up to help with babysitting, a few extra chores and is my food sampler in the kitchen. Practically helpful in every way.

Meri affectionately calls him J.J., Joshua is such a good friend, has a big heart and a head full of ideas. Fun ones. So thankful to have this fun-lovin’ young man in our family!!

Lesson: Jacob’s award-winning essay and discussion
Treat: Surprise!
(in other words – thinking on whether we should bust out the ice cream or dig into the emergency stash of Dove chocolate)

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