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Corbin’s Baptism


After a year of talking about baptism and learning what it would mean to be baptized, Corbin decided he would make the decision to be baptized into The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.  By being baptized, Corbin has covenanted with Heavenly Father that he will do his best to keep the commandments.  

Last February, when Corbin turned 7, I had the idea that we should learn about the Articles of Faith over the next year as he prepares for baptism,  I wanted him to understand as much as a 7 year old could what the Gospel really is about and I think the Articles of Faith do a good job of getting to the basics.  I also felt strongly that we made sure Corbin knew that this was truly his decision to make.  Connor and I told him ways he can figure out what he should do, but that it was up to him to make sure he felt good about the decision.  There were times over the year that he said he just wasn’t sure that he wanted to baptized and he knew that was okay for him to decide.  As the year progressed, he started to feel it was more and more right and in the end, he said it was a decision he felt good about.  

Unfortunately, the afternoon before the baptism, Cason got really sick.  He ended up having a high fever, a bad cough and trouble breathing.  We had to have a family friend stay with Cason at home while the rest of attended the baptism.  It was sad not to have my whole family there for Corbin’s special day.

Here are some pictures from his day.

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Corbin really wanted to have questions for people to answer about him and so he made up the questions!  I thought it added an extra fun element to his baptism!


We are very proud of this sweet boy and are glad to have his examplein ou home.

Corbin’s Birthday

Since Corbin turned 8 while we were in the Dominican Republic, and we celebrated there, we decided to just do a small birthday celebration for him once we got back. 

He actually got to open more presents the day we came back.  There were some that were too big for us to bring with us.

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Corbin really wanted a Jurassic World themed birthday!

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His cake was actually reminiscent of his 1st birthday cake (which was animals) and his 3rd birthday cake (a dinosaur).  I thiught it was fun to kind of revisit that!

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I cant believe this boy of mine is 8 years old.  It really feels like yesterday that he was born and I was snuggling him as a cute, chunky baby.

There are so many wonderul things I can say about him.  He loves dinosaurs, animals, Legos, superheroes, reading, his brother and sister.  He is smart and helpful and really tries to do what is right.  And that shows with his deciscion to be baptizd.  

His doctor’s appointment went great.  These were his stats:

Vision: L-20/30 R-20/30 Hearing:passed WT: 59 lbs HT: 50.5 in BP 94/58 P:89

Here are Corbin’s birthday questions:

1. What is your favorite color?  BLUE
2.  What is your favorite toy?  LEGOS
3.  What is your favorite fruit?  BLUEBERRIES
4.  What is your favorite TV show?  NINJAGO
5.  What is your favorite thing to eat for lunch?  PIZZA
6.  What is your favorite outfit? EMMETT SHIRT
7.  What is your favorite game?  THE LEGO MOVIE VIDEO GAME
8.  What is your favorite snack?  Z BARS
9.  What is your favorite animal?  RHINO
10.  What is your favorite song?  EVERYTHING IS AWESOME
11.  What is your favorite book? CAPTAIN UNDERPANTS
12.  Who is your best friend?  KEVIN
13.  What is your favorite cereal? COCOA PUFFS
14.  What is your favorite thing to do outside? TETHERBALL
15.  What is your favorite drink?  7-UP 10
16.  What is your favorite holiday?  CHRISTMAS
17.  What do you like to take to bed with you at night?  GOOFY
18.  What is your favorite thing to eat for breakfast?  FRENCH TOAST
19.  What do you want for dinner on your birthday? PIZZA
20.  What do you want to be when you grow up?  PALEONTOLOGIST

We couldn’t be more proud or happy with this sweet son of ours!

Dominican Republic

When we first found out Connor’s parents were going to serve a church mission in the Dominican Republic, we started planning when we could go visit them.  It worked out for us to go over the kids ski week break during February.  Corbin would also be turning 8 while we were there which was another fun thing to celebrate.

FIrst was to get there.  Our flight left early in the morning from San Francisco to JFK in New York.

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The kids did absolutely amazing the first leg of the trup.  Then we had a layover at JFK.  We got some food and Facetimed Connor’s parents.

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We got some mini cupcakes to try!

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Kinsley fell asleep while we were waiting to get on the plane.  

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The kids did great on the second leg as well.  These were some good travelers!

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Once we actually GOT to the DR it was a little crazy.  We had to pay $10 each for the travelers visa (line 1), then get our pictures taken and passport scanned (line 2).  We were given forms to fill out on the plane but when we got up to the line apparently we had needed some additional ones.  We got back out of line and back in to get this done.  Then we went to pick up our luggage (sort of line 3).  Once we got the luggage, we took off the plastic bags that were on the carseats bcause it was harder to carry that way.  Well, we started to walk out of baggage claim and had line 4 where they had to make sure each bag and ticket matched.  Well, we had thrown away the bags with the tags and they made us go get them out of the garbage.  That whole immigration process took well over an hour and it was midnight after a long travel day.  The kids were actually just great but I was just so done that I was the one close to tears. Ha! I told Connor that I was going to leave a bad Yelp review for the Domincan Republic immigration, so consider this it!

Not to mention my wonderful in-laws who waited at the airport for us that whole time.  What gems!  But we finally got to see them!


We got all the bags and carseats situated and then got to see the city at 1am.  The kids were hungry so we tried McDonalds but it was closed.  So my dear mother-in-law made the most delicious French Toast at 2:30am.

The next morning the kids playing with their devices with Papa! 


Shauna brought us breakfast from Wendy’s.  They have hot chocolate and churros for breakfast!  Yum!

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There was an extra space at their house and the kids loved playing in it!

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We decided to head to the park within walking distance and just across from the temple!

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I thought it was interesting and tad bit scary that there were secuirty guards at all the entrances to the park.  

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Apparently at Christmas time, they go all out and there are tons of decorations and lights thet fill the park.  Here it was February and there were still leftover decorations that hadn’t been cleaned up.

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Some of the play structures were SO high without any fences around the top that they freaked me out, so no pictures of them playing on those.

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See the temple behind Kinsley below?

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Then we walked over to the temple got to go inside the MTC.  The missionaries were eating lunch.  It was fun for the kids and me to get to see!


Then another Senior Missionary couple that is friends with Connor’s parents invited us to their apartment to go swimming in their pool.  


After a nice dip the pool, we went and got lunch at a place called Provocon.  This was one of Connor and my favorite places.  The chcicken was so delicious along with everything else and this was traditional Dominican food which I thought was great for us all to try.

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Then we headed to Colonial Town to walk around.  We got some ice cream at another delicious place.

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I got the chocolate chip ice cream. We were laughing because we don’t see any chocolate!

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I saw these “Yoms” that made us laugh!

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We kept walking around and found this square and old church.

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Then we went to this art fair thing that was right next to an old military fort.

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When we were leaving there was a parade going by.  Kinley has been loving parades and this was no exception even if it was a little weird!

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The next morning we got up and ready for church!  It was also Valentine’s Day!

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It seemed like a great ward! The boys even went to primary!  How fun they got to exrience that in another country!

After church we got ready for our drive to the beach house we were going to stay at.  Corbin was playing with Papa’s missionary tag.

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The drive was pretty but then it got super crazy when we were in the towns.  The driving is just insane.  Then we got to the beach house and we had a happy girl on our hands!  But actually we all were happy!

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We got ready to go get dinner.

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We planned on walking on the beach to the restaurant but the kids just wnated to play in the water!

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We found a good place to eat for our first night!

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Getting ready for bed, eating the lollipops that were bought on the side of the road!

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And this isn’t a great picture but it shows the delicious hot chocolate Shauna made for us!

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The next morning everyone was dying to get to the beach.  I thought these two pictures were funny becuase they were taken right after each other.  

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The beach we were staying at is called Kite Beach (for all the kite surfing) but once Corbin heard this he wanted to bring a kite to fly!

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Came back to the condo for lunch.  The kids loved these little sodas.

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Our balcony that we ate meals on!

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After lunch and some rest time, we headed out to the pool!

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The next morning I noticed poor baby girl had a sunburn.  I don’t think any of our kids have ever had a sunburn before but I just didn’t put enough sunscreen on Kinsley.  So she ate breakfast shirtless!

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We decided to head up to a mountain and take the tram up to the top. 

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After the tram we stopped for lunch at Provocon.  

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After lunch we headed to Ocean World.  We got there only a couple hours before closing and tickets were so expensive that we decided to send the kids with Nana and Papa (who had a resident dscount).

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A fun day for all of us!  The next morning, more delicious hot chocolate!

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Connor decided he wanted to try kite surfing.  Turns out it is super hard and my athletic husband wasn’t able to get in the water to try it.  But he did get to try the kite on the land.  It looked super hard!

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In the morning, we woke up to this! Cason was mad that I wanted to take a picture, hence his face.  But I told him that it’s my right as a mom to get a picture when her son draws on their face.

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This day we decided that after breakfast Connor and I would go zip lining at Monkey World and then get to see and touch the actual monkeys.  

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Connor had a coworker tell him about a great place to grab some food that we tried.  The fish tacos were the best I ever had!

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We got into playing Rumikub and I got on a winning streak.  (I don’t think he’ll admit it, but I think it bugged Connor just a little bit.  He’s used to being the winner!)


The next day was Corbins birthday.  It’s kind of hard to completely celebrate on vacation but we did the best we could!  I can’t believe my oldest is 8!

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The next day was our last day but we still had a full day since our flight didn’t leave until 1am.  We decided to o tosome caves.

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We ate lunch at Pricemart which is almost exactly like Costco.

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Later thar day, Shauna took me to a salon to get my hair washed and dried.  

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We played another game of Rumikub and Connor won!!!


Then it was time to say goodbye.  It was hard for all of us.  Corbin cried!  But then they were all so tired in the airport, this happened:

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THe kids did pretty good on the flights.  Not much sleeping and only a bit of crying, but we made it home.  Note to self: no more overnight flights!

We had an amazing time and it wsa just so fun to get to experience another country and see Jon and Shauna.  Thanks for a wonderful trip of a ifetime!

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© The Duke Fam 2014