Tuesday, March 31, 2009

30 pictures in 30 days

When Spence and I got married, my older and much the wiser sister, Jessica, made us a photo slideshow to play at our wedding luncheon and reception. (Sidenote: Thanks Jessica for being so talented!) Spence and I dated for two years before we got married. We did loads of fun things (and a few stupid things). We were together nearly every single day. Yet when it came time to do our photo slideshow we had a measly little stack of about 16 pictures to hand over to Jessica. Sixteen pictures. IN TWO YEARS! I have more than sixteen pictures of my 4-H Dairy Heifers. And I HATED them!! So in a conscious effort to improve my ways I am going to resolve to take more pictures. And to make myself accountable I am going to post a picture a day for the entire month of April. That means 30 pictures in 30 days. Just a few things before I get started: One. I am a self-proclaimed “Queen of Good Intentions”. Thirty days is a long time. We’ll see how I do. Two. I must disclose that I am a highly trained and educated photographer. And by that I mean that I know that you should try to capture the object in the little digital screeny thingamajig (yes, that is the technical term) and then push the button on top of the camera. If I don’t cut off heads and you can see the image somewhat clearly I consider it a good photo shoot. ‘Nuff said! Three. If anybody would like to play along by posting a daily (or weekly, or Wednesday, or whatever) picture on your blog I would love the company. It will be like one of those home business parties but without the awkward feeling that you have to buy something to appease the hostess. Okay, so it would be nothing like a home party. But it would be fun nonetheless. So, here’s to taking more pictures.

Monday, March 30, 2009

Dear Brynlee: On Your 3rd Birthday

Last Sunday Brynlee turned three-years-old. We ended up celebrating her birthday a little earlier in the week while Zeb, Jami and Brooke were down for a visit. Jami and I hung balloons and streamers and made cupcakes while Zeb and Spencer put together the new birthday trampoline. She had a fun day and is already talking about her next birthday. In honor of Brynlee’s birthday I wanted to borrow an idea from my ever-so-talented and creative friend, Katie, who writes a yearly letter to her kids. Thanks Katie for the great idea! So here is to Brynlee on her third birthday:
Sweet Brynlee,

I can’t believe that you are already three-years-old! It seems like just yesterday we brought you home from the hospital in your little polka-dotted car seat, your little pink beanie hat and pink blanket engulfing you. Sometimes I look at you and see that strong-minded nine month old with fist clinched to the side of the crib, or that curious one-year old with the wobbly, unpracticed walk. I can still hear your little newborn squeak, your early evening colic cry and your thirteen month old jibber-jabber.

Last summer you and I spent countless hours walking around the neighborhood. You would ride your little red tricycle continually stopping to collect all sorts of nature in the pint size trunk. Every time you stopped to pick up “a prize for your collection” I would have to give you a push start to get the wheels moving again. It was a guarantee that about half way around the block you would tire of peddling. Consequently, I would finish the walk with your tricycle on one hip, you on the other and a very pregnant belly in the center.

It has finally warmed up enough for us to venture out on our nature walks again. And like clockwork your pint size trunk has started accumulating “prizes for your collection”. But this time it’s different. You no longer need my help. You no longer need me to steer around the sharp corners. You not longer need a push start. You no longer tire of the peddling and need to finish the trip in my arms.

You are becoming so independent. You can dress and undress yourself (in fact, you get a little offended when we try to help), you can put on your own shoes, brush your own teeth, buckle your own carseat and use the restroom and wash your hands without our help. And yesterday you informed us that you are so big you don’t even need to use the potty seat on the big potty anymore. You love to cut, color, paint and paste. There is never a day that ends without a pile of newspaper, coloring pages and computer paper clippings on the rug under your little table. You can spend hours drawing pictures then cutting them up into tiny, tiny pieces.

You also love to go grocery shopping. We play a game of “I Spy” in which I will tell you what is on the list and you scan the aisles until you see it. You love to use the self-checkout so you can scan the groceries and bag them all by yourself. At home you push around your little grocery cart loading it up with toys, books and food items to purchase. Often times you call me on your play cell phone to ask what I need you to buy or to tell me the prices of different items in your toybox.

You love to observe. Since you are quite shy you spend a lot of time sitting back and just watching. I am always amazed at what you pick up and remember. You remember places, people and details. You love to “read” (retell) your library books to dad, Jace and I and I am always shocked at how well you know the story after just hearing it once.

Last week, I took you to the 3-5 year old book readers at the library. Now that you are in the older class you go by yourself. I sat outside on the bench and watched you through the window. You were so big, so grown-up singing your nursery rhymes and listening to the stories. When you got out of the class you said, “There is lots to do when you’re three, huh mom?”

Brynlee, I love to watch you love your little brother. From the moment Jace joined our family you have been a wonderful big sister to him. I often look back in the rear view mirror to find you and Jace both buckled in your carseats with your arms stretched out so you can hold hands. You are continually asking to, “See that little buddy” or “Hold that little fellow”. You sing to him. You read him stories. You share your toys with him. You worry about him. You make him laugh. You LOVE HIM! And I love that about you.

You are also a huge fan of your daddy. If given the choice of playing with other little kids your age or playing with your daddy, dad would ALWAYS win. You love to be with him. You two play all sorts of made-up games together and dad is always willing to do the things that mom tires of quickly. If asked who you’re best friend is you’d say, “My daddy!” and it’s true.

I love how freely you tell us that you love us and one of my favorite things is when I tell you that I love you and you say, “whuv you too, mama”.

Brynlee, you are an incredible little girl with a brilliant zest for life. Your dad and I love your energy, your spirit, your heart. And we are truly blessed to be your parents!

Love you always my little-three-year old,

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Dear Terrible Twos, I miss you.

We went to the kid’s doctor appointments yesterday. Brynlee had her three years old check-up and Jace his six month one. Jace was a star at his appointment and only cried when he got his shots. Oh, but Brynlee! I’d like to say that she handled her check-up with dignity and grace. But, that would be an absolute and complete lie. She instead threw a fit of epic proportions. Tears, sweat and blood (except for maybe not blood) were all involved. And that was just to get her to stand on the scale. I believe she was out to show Jace that if he brought all that well-behaved weak stuff to the playground he wouldn’t last 5 minutes. If this is what being three is all about, then I want the terrible twos back! Here are the stats from their appointments: Brynlee was in the 30% for weight (29 lbs) and 15% for height (35 ½).And Jace was in the 50% for weight (17 lb 9.5 oz) and 90% for height (28 ¾).Before bed, Brynlee informed us that her favorite part of the day was going to the doctor. Say what? Either, she is one smart three year old that played Spence and I like fools so we would start throwing around bribes or the rest of her day was really, really bad!

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

{Insert catchy title here}

I spent the better part of hours looking at this front view: And this side view: To go here: With these guys: For this: And this: We had a:But like always, it’s good to beCongratulations to my cousin Melissa and her husband Dallas and best of luck on your

P.S. Happy Birthday to this old man

Thanks for being the
P.S.S. Sorry about the poor picture quality we are having some minor issues. P.P.S.S. Thanks to the image owners for use of their pictures and my eBFF Google for finding them for me.

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

I know I can’t, I know I can’t, I know I can’t

When Sarah came down last week we were discussing the fact that I make homemade baby food for my babies. Sarah jokingly {obviously, ‘cause seriously…have you met me?} said, “What can’t you do?” I instantaneously fell to the floor in uncontrollable laughter. Then 15 minutes later, when I had finally gained composure and caught my breath, I asked her to repeat the question. That way I could honestly say that I’d been asked that question twice in my life. Anyways… I would like to formally answer Sarah’s question. {Yes, I do consider the blog to be formal.} {And no, I don't think it was intended to be a hypothetical question.}

I can’t help that the more excited I am the faster and louder I talk. I can’t sing a single note in key. Yet I can’t listen to music without singing along. I can’t jump off a diving board and I can't gracefully snowboard down a hill. I can’t fit into a size zero, swallow prenatal pills, or cut in a straight line. I can’t draw, paint or sketch. I can’t watch “The Biggest Loser” without crying. I can’t go on a road trip with Spencer without playing, “remember when…?” I can’t get in bed without first checking on both my kids. I can’t focus when watching TV. I can’t help that I am addicted to American Idol. I can’t compete in a starring contest without laughing. I can’t put the newspaper in the recycling bin without reading “Dear Abby”. I can’t help but to feel guilty when money is spent on me. I can’t watch Dateline without Spencer, and even then I get uncomfortably scared. Yet, I can’t talk myself out of watching it. I can’t not read the cover of the magazines in the check-out line. I can't thank my parents enough. I can’t eat just one of anything. I can’t go to a fair without being reminded of Dairy Heifer 4-H. I can’t consecutively be early (or even on time). I can’t explain how happy Spencer makes me or how much joy Brynlee and Jace bring me. I can’t make myself scrapbook. And I can’t play basketball. And that’s the short list! There are many, MANY more things that I can’t do! What can’t you do?

Monday, March 16, 2009

Report Dayplanner

Spencer used to make fun of me about my dayplanner addiction joking that I would write things like brush my teeth and shower in there. However, he is now much wiser in the usefulness of my dayplanner and will even call from work and say, “write this in your planner...”! Oh, the beauty of my little black book. It even reminds me what to blog about. Sunday, March 8th: Mom, Dad and Marie came down for the day. Served sandwiches and canned Progresso soup for lunch. I obviously take my hosting duty very, very seriously. Breah came over for a slumber party. We stayed up until 2:00am solving the world’s problems. However, due to the late hour we had forgotten all the solutions by morning time. Monday, March 9th: Drove Breah home. Planned on staying with my little sister, Jami, for a few days and visiting friends in that area, however due to illness on Jami’s part changed plans. Took a picture by the bridge. Learned that I needed to add have a "how to take self-portrait" discussion with Brynlee to my dayplanner. Brynlee gave Breah the title of most awsomest big person friend EVER! Breah was estatic to receive such a noble honor. Grabbed a quick bite to eat with my little bro Alan. Drove to my parent’s town to watch my dad and the high school drama team put on the musical, “The Music Man”. It really is to bad that my dad spent a good portion of his high school years writing, “I will not jump out of the ceiling rafters and scare my teacher!” on the chalk board because he really could have been an asset to the high school drama team. After watching the play I felt a tiny bit guilty for all the midlife crisis jokes I had been making about my dad getting tricked into being in a high school play. He really did a great job. Tuesday, March 10th: Drove home from my parent’s house. Contracted some sort of eye infection. Wednesday, March 11th: Canceled all plans due to the eye infection. Kate came over for our weekly TV night. An eye infection would never be allowed to get in the way of our weekly five hour DVRed dosage of “The Biggest Loser” and “American Idol”. Thursday, March 12th: Grocery shopped all the live long day. Stopped at Costco to get milk, bananas and cheese. Came out with $98.15 worth of groceries. Ugh! Spencer then insisted that we go out to dinner so I wouldn’t have to cook. {Again, my blog, my story!} Friday, March 13th: Sarah and her kids came down for the day. Talked, laughed and cried while not allowing our eyes to leave the Dr. Mario screen. Dr. Mario is our self prescribed medication. Started day one of our church volleyball tournament. Won our first two games. Felt sad that the season was almost over. Sent Spencer away with a sleeping bag, some caffeinated drinks and a bottle of Advil to fend for himself while sleeping on the ground with a bunch of 11-12 year old scouts. Felt certain that my new sleeping bag covers were going to be the talk of the camp. Saturday, March 14th: Took 2nd Place at the Volleyball Tournament. Go Team!Felt a little disappointed when there wasn’t a cash reward. However, I did get to bring this perdy little thing home: I remember hearing at a high school volleyball camp that if you dove correctly you should never bruise your knees. Obviously my diving skills border perfection! As do my mothering skills, seeing how it is now 10:15 and me and the kids are still sitting in my bed watching Handy Manny while I upload pictures and summarize my day planner! And that’s our life unedited all updated!

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Jace’s Manchair

With the help of some leftover upholstery material that I had in my fabric drawer and a yard of plastic overlay the princess pink highchair has officially turned boy! Before: After: And since I did all the work of dragging the sewing machine downstairs I went ahead and retired our hefty, hefty, hefty sleeping bag covers and created these new ones. Before: After: I have about 1 ½ yards of green striped upholstery material left over. Oh, the possibilities.

Very first half birthday

My little buddy, You turn six months today. On one hand I want to freeze time, as to keep you at this adorable six months age where you are so content cooing, giggling and rolling over. So you forever love to cuddle and do nothing but smile when I talk to you. Yet, on the other hand I want to fast forward time…if only for a second. So I can see what you become and grow into. So I can get a glimpse of what you look like and where your dreams and interests take you. However, there is one thing I know for sure. You and your big sis make me very, very happy.

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