Saturday, November 16, 2013

Fantastic 4!

Happy birthday to our dear Lydia back in March…”Pi Day” to be exact.

Breakfast time with our traditional stick-a-candle-in-a-chunk-of-banana-in-the-bottom-of-your-bowl-of-oatmeal.  It starts them off feeling special for their big day.
Here' she is ready for preschool.  She looks so grown up!

After preschool, she wanted her friend Miriam to come over for lunch and a play date.  I made them little pb&j flower sandwiches, carrots, apples and chocolate muffins with their chocolate milk in Lydia’s special tea set.


After lunch, they sat so cute and nice while they listened to books on CDs and followed along in the book.
Lydia’s dinner of choice was a Red Robin corndog.  This is a phone pic just after the waiters sang to her, brought her ice cream, and put a celebratory coffee filter hat on her head.  She didn’t know what to do with all that attention.
We came home to open presents…so many lovely and generous things from family and friends!

She requested a strawberry cake, so here it is!

Awwww, she’s so sweet and definitely our little cutie pie.  We can’t wait to see what’s ahead for our special and amazing girl!

Thursday, March 14, 2013

12 of 12 - March 2013

1 - It's hard to see, but these are three new little trees we purchased and planted in our backyard last Saturday.  The one in the foreground is an apple tree with five different varieties on one tree, the middle one is a cherry, and the far one is a Jonagold apple tree.  We can't wait to watch them grow!

2 - Seth catches the bus at 11:30, so sometimes it sneaks up on me.  It seems like they just barely ate breakfast before it's time to get to the bus stop.  Today it was "eat on the go," Seth and Lydia taking turns biting a big, juicy apple.

3 - Here's Peter showing off his cute little bottom teeth during lunch.  I think he's working on the top ones, but they haven't poked through yet.  He's just starting to get the idea of feeding himself.  That's a milestone I've always looked forward to with my babies.  Then they can entertain/pacify themselves in the high chair while I'm getting the meal ready.

4 - It looks like Lydia's playing with bread dough, but it's actually play dough.  I made 3 big batches so that all 17 kids in Seth's kindergarten class could have 1 cup of it to make it into volcanoes for their science unit this week.  I forget how much I like homemade play dough.  The smell of store-bought Play-doh is gross to me, so now maybe I'll make a bunch in some different colors and get rid of the stinky stuff.

5 - This is Peter's sexy pose.  It's actually his I'm-resting-because-crawling-on-my-hands-and-knees-wears-me-out pose.  He gets around really well by rolling around and army crawling, but now he's starting to get up on his knees.

6 - Lydia:  "Come here, Peter.  I'm almost 4, so that means I'm big enough to pick you up, no matter what Mom says." 
Peter:  "Mom, put down the camera and help me."

7 - I know this is a super weird photo, but I love these striped pants on Lydia, and I'll be sad when they get too small someday.  I pinch and squish her tiny bum all day!

8 - Last week in preschool, Lydia brought an envelope and stamp, and they could choose someone to write a letter to.  She chose Seth, and drew a picture for him, and since she can't write yet, she dictated to Miss Tammy what the letter said:  "Dear Seth, I like to play and make funny faces to Peter with you because it makes him laugh.  I don't like it when we fight.  I wish we could go to the park to have fun together in the summer.  I wish I could get you some Star Wars Legos because you love them so much.  Love, Lydia."

9 - Peter gets excited when Matt gets home.  Dad's trying to read the paper, and in his own way, Peter's trying to do the same.  :-)

10 - Tonight's dinner scene.  And she thinks she doesn't need naps anymore.  On another note, check out her plate.  It's not too common for her to eat EVERYTHING, but I guess breakfast burritos and oranges are winners!

11 - Seth is reading chapter books for school.  His reading has really taken off, and his teacher sends him home with Jigsaw Jones books to read.  The other kids were in bed, and Matt was at Young Men, so my little kindergartner and I got some rare one-on-one time to read and play together before bed.

12 - I made these cute little flower cookies made with Nilla Wafers, melted chocolate, and M&Ms.  Lydia's bringing them to preschool on her birthday for snack time.  Something a little different than cupcakes - and easy too!  I love that her birthday is in the spring when there are so many cute springy and colorful treats to choose from.

Monday, February 18, 2013

12 of 12 - February 2013

1 - This little guy is just so happy and giggly, in large part thanks to his big brother and sister playing with him, tickling him, singing to him, and doing all manner of craziness to get smiles and laughs out of him.

2 - Lydia went to preschool this morning.  When I made the picture collage, it cut off Miss Tammy's head!  Lydia has a good time there with her teacher and friends.

3 - It's a rain boot kind of day.

4 - Seth can't leave for school without a big goodbye hug from his little sister.  I'm glad they like to do that, and I'll love it for as long as I can.  Having a big brother myself, I know this kind of thing won't last as they get older.  Although now, I wish I lived close enough to go give him a big hug right now!

5 - Bye, school bus!  See you in about 4 hours!

6 - My little sweetie likes to hold my hand on the way back home from the bus stop.

7 - Afternoon nap time.  Peter has taken to sucking his thumb, hence his sleeping 12 hours at night!  I couldn't get a picture of it because he loves to sleep with his face up next to the crib bumper, and I wasn't about to move a sleeping baby just to get a snapshot!  Anyway, who doesn't love a good baby bum photo??

8 - This is a quilt block I made, and it's ready to send on to the next person in a cross-country quilt round robin.  I'll get it back in October, and I'll be surprised with what the other quilters have added to it!

9 - I don't make sugar cookies that often, but Valentines Day is one time that I do.  And I have plenty of little helping hands to make them with me.

10 - Homework time.  Lydia is getting really good at cutting and pasting, and Seth is working on writing sentences using sight words.  He also finished his first chapter book all by himself!

11 - Leftover cake from last night.  This is soo good and really easy.  Just mix 1 chocolate cake mix, 1 cup plain non-fat greek yogurt, and 1 cup water.  Mix it all together and pour it into whatever pan you want, and bake it according to the box instruction.  Just a little sprinkle of powdered sugar, and you have a sweet treat that you won't feel too bad about indulging in.

12 - Sorry, but I just couldn't bring myself to watch the State of the Union address.  I'm confident Mitt Romney would have been able to restore a better economy and a more positive direction for our country.  Alas, we move on, but for now I'm still in political "mourning," so I decided to relax and read an inspiring article written by our would-be POTUS in this month's BYU Magazine.

Friday, February 8, 2013

12 of 12 - January 2013

1 - Peter wakes up happy pretty much every morning.  He's been sleeping from 7 pm until 7 am every night for a week - yay for sleep!

2 - Seth, Lydia and I stayed up late last night finishing this Dowdle puzzle of Pike's Market.  It's been a long time since we did a big one, and it was fun!  I'm amazed that the kids don't really refer to the picture on the box.  They just keep trying different pieces until they find the ones that fit.

3 - This is looking out to our backyard.  It's a frosty cold morning, and it didn't really warm up much over the course of the day.

4 - I look at our yard (this is the front) and dream of what I want to plant and dig up and create this spring and summer.

5 - My new favorite breakfast that I could eat  Steel cut oats with vanilla almond milk - yum!

6 - Peter's been eating solids for a couple of weeks, and he's a champ!  His favorite thing to do is grab the spoon while I'm putting it in his mouth.  Let me do it myself, Mom!

7 - The aftermath of Matt's overnight campout with the Young Men from church.  I love camping, but not in 8-degree temperatures!  He had a great time and learned a few things for when he goes again in February for two nights on Mt. Rainier.  They'll make their own snow caves/igloos to sleep in rather than tents.

8 - My lego kid. He loves taking apart his lego sets, setting all the pieces out on the table, and starting at the beginning of the instruction manual to build it all over again.  While the sets are taken apart, it's funny to see what he puts together.  Anakin Skywalker might be riding on the SUV and using his light saber as a flashlight while they drive into the cave prospecting for gold.  Or the gold digger guy might be the pilot of a crazy Star Wars battlecraft.  Cracks me up!

9 - Lydia loves to help me in the kitchen.  We made twice-baked potatoes, and here she is stirring the turkey bacon using her play oven mitt in case it pops or splatters.

10 - Matt was exhausted but still made time to read with his little girl.

11 - Peter loves loves loves bath time!  He'll thank me later for the strategic placement of the washcloth.  :-)

12 - I finished reading this book for the umpteenth (a word invented by my granny meaning lots and lots and lots) time.  It's a Newberry Medal winner, so even though it's geared more toward kids, I love it because it's a quick read with a good message.  I recommend it to anyone who asks for one.  In the background Matt is finishing up preparations for his talk in church the next day (which, by the way, was SO good).

A Merry Christmas

Christmas 2012 was the first one in our new home and the first one in Washington since we've been married.  We missed seeing our families, but it was kind of nice to not deal with holiday travel.  Can someone invent teleportation please?  Just think about being somewhere and BAM! you're there.  We had a nice little Christmas as a family of five.

Santa ate almost all of his treats and left a nice letter for the kids.

Bleary-eyed but excited early in the morning.

I just love this little cutie.  Seth gave her that hat for Christmas, and she's in her new Christmas kitty jammies and playing with her princess sticker book.

 The annual Christmas stool photos.  The kids are holding one of their favorite gifts, and my how they're growing!  I hope the stool holds up for future Christmases.
Super heroes dry erase activity book.

Cute doll made by Grandma.

Not a new rattle, but he sure loves to grab on and shake that thing.  Hooray for Peter's first Christmas!  He slept through all the gift-opening hooplah and didn't wake up until 8:30.  Somehow I don't think he cared that we didn't wait for him.

Cutie Christmas Kids!

12 of 12 - December

1 - Good morning, sweet baby Peter!

2 - I worked out with my 30 Day Shred DVD for the first time since before I got pregnant with Peter.  It killed me today, but I can't help but be thankful for the body I've been given.  It will adapt and do what I tell it to, it has carried and birthed three beautiful children, and now it's time to show my thanks by taking better care of it.

3 - Teething ring on one arm, and holding his morning bottle with his cute little hands.

4 - Today is 12-12-12, so I made pancakes in the shape of twelves.  The one on the pink plate looks like a seahorse next to a blob, but the kids didn't seem to mind.  Let's just say the rest of the batch of pancakes were the standard circles.

5 - There was a cute puppet show about a snow princess at the library.  One lady did the whole thing with all the different voices...amazing!

6 - Peter at the library...not too sure about all the commotion, but he's comfy and content in his carseat.

7 - Yep, that's a big ol' bottle of vodka...the first one I've ever purchased.  Thanks to the recent vote to privatize alcohol sales in Washington, I shoved it into the bottom of grocery cart instead of going to a liquor store.  I made homemade vanilla extract for Christmas gifts.  Easy to make and SO fragrant and delicious!

8 - Seth and Lydia putting together their alphabet puzzle.

9 - Same as previous picture, but I just love this puzzle and you can almost hear the wheels turning in Lydia's head.  Each letter has a picture, and it's its own little puzzle.  It helps with letter recognition and early reading.

10 - My favorite Christmas decoration.  This nativity set belonged to my grandparents.  It's been around a LONG time, and the only sign of wear is a missing ear on the donkey.  My granny passed away 10 years ago today, so she's especially on my mind and in my heart.

11 - Earlier in the day, I pruned a rose bush in the backyard.  I'm a rose-growing novice, and this is the first bush I've had, so we'll see what happens this summer.

12 - Lydia made this adorable Christmas decoration in preschool.  The tree is her hand prints, and the ornaments are her fingerprints.  I'll love this forever!

2012 Santa Story

The idea was to write a little narrative of our annual visit to Santa every year, but I realized the last time I did this was Lydia's first Christmas!  Time to start up again.  Side note:  Santa's speaking parts are made up by me, not his actual words...just interpreting the photos.  Here's how it went down:

Seth:  I want Star Wars Legos and more Star Wars Legos and maybe some Star Wars Legos.
Santa:  Wow, you really know your Star Wars.  Are you pretending to be Luke Skywalker after he gets his hand chopped off and before he gets his new bionic one?  That's pretty cool.

Seth:  Santa, you're the best.
Santa:  Thanks for being a good boy.

Lydia:  I want a bunny house and Cinderella Legos.
Santa:  You have a tiny voice that I can barely hear, but you sure are cute.

Lydia:  I've been wanting to give you a hug all day.
Santa:  You're a sweetheart and a good little girl.

Seth:  This was fun!
Peter:  Where am I?
Lydia:  Yay!  I got my candy cane!

Seth:  Still smiling, Mom & Dad.  Thanks for bringing me to see Santa!
Peter:  There's something down there that's interesting.
Lydia:  I'm looking at whatever Peter is looking at.  Is it time to eat my candy cane yet?

Seth:  OK, are we almost done with pictures, Mom?  My smiler's getting tired.
Peter:  OK, now there's something over there that's got my attention.
Lydia:  Now I'm smiling at Dad.  Surely, he'll let me eat my candy cane.

Seth:  Yay! We got to see Santa!
Lydia:  Waaa!  Mom said I can't eat my candy cane now because we're going to go get dinner.
Dad:  OK let's all cry on the count of three.  One...two...three...waaaaaa!
Peter:  I'm taking a break from crying.  Wanna tell me why you handed me over to that big, red stranger?

Seth:  Merry Christmas!
Lydia:  Candy cane!  Candy cane!
Dad:  I love this.  No, really.
Peter:  Nope, still haven't forgiven you for this!  Waaaa!

The End

Friday, January 25, 2013


Here are few photos of way back when, aka Thanksgiving, our first one in our new home.  I didn't take many photos, including our lovely dinner table, but here are a few throughout the day.

Color-by-number Thanksgiving printables kept the kids busy for a bit.

Peter officially turned over from his back to his tummy on Thanksgiving Day.  He was on his little play mat, and, bless his heart, just turned over and went to sleep!

Thanksgiving was an extra special day of thanks.  It was our 10th wedding anniversary!  Of course, we weren't married on Thanksgiving, but every few years, we get to celebrate it on the holiday.  Matt gave me these lovely flowers.  I'm a lucky girl to be married to a sweetheart of a guy.

The kids and I made these place settings/favors out of a sugar cone and M & M's.  Thank you, Pinterest!

We hosted the missionaries for Thanksgiving dinner and had a nice, quiet day.  I sure love that holiday.  It's all about that one day, being grateful for our blessings and sharing those blessings with others.