Monday, December 9, 2013


It's funny ... November is the month to celebrate gratitude. But really, I think it just starts it off. I might not have listed out each thing I'm grateful for this year, but I assure you, the list is long. The other night, in particular, I was reminded of everything we are blessed with.

We went to a local "live nativity" where people act out the Christmas story. It was done really well, and was a great experience for all of us. But, wow ... it was COLD. The majority of it was outside, and it took us about an hour to walk through. When we got back in the car we realized it was only 13 degrees outside. Since then it hasn't been any warmer than 25. Nippy to say the least :)! 

And I'm grateful for each freezing, snowing day because it reminds me to be thankful.

I am grateful to be able to bundle my kiddos up to keep them warm outside, and have a warm house to keep them safe in. That they have snuggly PJs and plenty of blankets to cover up with. That their bellies are full. That we have family and friends who love all of us so much. 

But it is also a sobering reminder that not everyone is so fortunate (in fact, I can't get it out of my head). At this time of year, and in this freezing weather, there are people who aren't able to keep warm, so let's look for ways to help. 

Maybe you can do a little, maybe you can do a lot ... but let's all do something, okay? Together we can make this holiday season a little warmer in more ways than one. 

Monday, November 18, 2013

An Update ...

To say it's been a busy Fall would be an understatement. We have so much fun just trying to keep up with life and these two busy boys! (Warning ... picture overload!)

We have very exciting family news ... Grandma and Grandpa Terry are missionaries now! They are serving the Nauvoo Temple Mission. They started officially today, but a few weeks ago we went down to St. George to celebrate as a family. It was so fun to see everyone - the boys were in heaven with their cousins. The kids all sang I Love to See the Temple in sacrament meeting. These are pics of our trip!  
You should have heard it ... it was adorable!

I was really proud of Landon. It was his first time singing in front of people and he sang his little heart out. Then the big kids got up and sang by themselves, and it was amazing! My boys are lucky to have such great cousins (the first cousin missionary leaves this January!!).
Grandma and Grandpa right before they drove to Nauvoo!
Halloween was SO much fun this year. I really wanted them to be Sully and Mike from Monsters, Inc. I knew they would be SO CUTE! And they did not disappoint. I love these two monsters so much!!
Cutest Joy School kids ever! It was so fun to go to Landon's party!
My little monsters!!
Liam is 10 months old and still not "officially" crawling (which, for the record, I think is fantastic!). He can get around ... he's a talented roller and scoocher. Just last night he got up on all fours and moved backwards :)! He's clapping, signing "more" and chattering away as if he is having a full conversation. And boy ... he loves his big kid food!
So. Cute.
Apparently he needed his blankie and two bears... we're in trouble!
Landon has started trying to teach him things - like how to play cars! It's pretty cute to watch. Liam has definitely already caught on when it comes to wrestling and how to antagonize your brother. It kills me to see how much they love each other! I foresee a LOT of wrestling in our future.

Landon teaching Liam how to play cars and planes.
He's a very captive student!
First "real" drawing ... of a shark!

We are in a dinosaur phase :)
This last weekend we made our way to the Traverse Mountain Tree lighting. It was a lot of fun!  Watching the boys look at the Christmas tree sparkle and see the fireworks is exactly what I needed to put me right in the holiday spirit. Children truly embody the magic of Christmas!

Friday, November 8, 2013

Back to Blogging!

Once upon a time I started this blog. Before I joined the world of motherhood, Facebook, Instagram or Pinterest (you know, back in the day). And I loved it. It was my own little forum to discuss life. Without knowing if anyone else read it or cared what I said. I did. And that's what mattered.

First it was "Just the Two of Us," and I talked about things like vacation (oh Ireland, I miss you!), then it we added a third, and you were all blessed with seeing lots (and lots and lots) of pictures of our very adored first child. Then (craziness here!) we became four. 

And that's when I seemed to fall off the face of the earth. Not all at once, mind you, but slowly. There have been far less pictures of Liam (even though I said it wouldn't happen), and less about his sweet, adorable self.  Life just sped up and I stopped writing.

And sometimes I mourn this occurrence. Less pictures, less stories and less of a record of this little family of mine. Which, is the whole reason I started it to begin with. So I'm here to say I'm going to be more committed to it (and I figure if I state it where the world can read it I will be committed - even though that theory has never worked for me with exercise, but I digress). 

So my announcement today is ... I'm back to blogging. (Are you excited?!)

Stay tuned.

Thursday, September 19, 2013

Liam is Eight Months! (And got his first hair cut!)

Liam is eight months old this week! We can't imagine even a second without this sweet guy!! He is the sweetest, most loving baby. 
Look at that face!!

A few things about him right now: He gives the most enthusiastic kisses - they just melt my heart! He can make the "kissy" noise and loves when you make it back. But if you actually ask him for a kiss? He will grab right on to your face/hair and give you a big ol' wet one! It can't help but make your day!

He loves to be held and involved in everything all the time ... and if he isn't he will let you know! The way he "complains" is so funny, he makes a "griping" noise like he is talking continually until someone pays attention to his request. But all it takes to get the biggest smile from him is to look right at him and grin ... and you are instantly rewarded with the biggest smile back! LOVE!

As much as he wants to be a big kid like Landon (and is always reaching for things) he still isn't trying to crawl - he's just happy to sit and be adorable. Landon can get the biggest belly laughs from him! He really, really loves his big brother.

He LOVES to eat (obviously) and wants to try new things all the time. He really loves baby food (sweet potatoes and apples are his fave), his baby "puffs," ice cream (I know, I know ...) and watermelon. But he is definitely willing to try just about anything!! 

And my favorite thing? This kid is a mamma's boy! A lot of the time all he wants and needs is me. I'll take it in a heartbeat! I love it!! However, I keep trying to get him to say "mama." His response to me today in the car when we were driving? Him practicing his "da" noise over and over! 

This week we were getting hair cuts (family pictures are just around the corner!). I kept not wanting to get Liam's cut. It needed it, but he's so little still! But we decided to at the last minute. He did great - and loved all the attention. He has a thing for red heads, so he loved that Jeff's cousin, who was cutting it, has beautiful red hair. The one thing I wouldn't let get cut, though, was his little bitty hair curls. They are just behind his ears and too cute for words.
Mid-cut. He thought the whole thing was pretty fun!
All finished ... and so handsome!
That curl! You wouldn't have cut it either.
 He's getting too big too fast!! We sure love him!

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Landon's First Day of Joy School!

Dear Landon,

Today you started Joy School. I know some people would say “it’s just Joy School.” You have 1 more year of pre-school even before kindergarten. But, wow, it feels HUGE to me. You just seem too little, and much too big all at the same time. I can’t believe you are already three and a half. 

I am (and really I should say we – because your daddy feels the same way) ridiculously proud of how smart, bright, funny and wonderful you are. You surprise us every day with the things you remember and with your immense vocabulary. People have stopped us since you were born to tell us how adorable you are, and to this day it happens all the time. And we agree – you are really a beautiful boy – inside and out. 

You have the biggest heart – you love so completely. What a gift to have – I love it and hurt for you all at the same time. You will give and get great love, but it also means you can get hurt. And as your mommy I want to protect you from everything! Sometimes when I have to hold a boundary with you seeing the look on your face breaks my heart. I might look stoic, but inside I am just crumbling.  And while sharing is hard for you, you LOVE having friends and are so social. And my favorite? You love to snuggle. You will still just climb on my lap and stay there for a long time. I would keep you there forever. 

You sat so still while Daddy gave you a blessing last night. You listened because you immediately started talking about the Holy Ghost and had to go get your “Really Ghost Jar” from your room to hold. I hope you always remember those feelings, even before you completely understand them. When we went in to put you to bed, and you chose “Love you Forever” as your story, and miraculously I held it together while we read it, but I couldn’t have said it any better – I will love you forever, and you will always be my baby. 

We asked you what you want to be when you grow up. You said Sully (the large blue and purple monster from Monsters, Inc.). Daddy then re-explained the question (just in case you didn’t understand) and you answered the same thing. You think that being Sully is completely reasonable thing to grow up to be and that’s what you’ll do when you go into an office like Daddy. In fact you said: “I will be Sully and I will scare the people in your office.” Your serious look is one of my very favorites. And really, who are we to argue? You want to be Sully? Dream big, my friend … we will support you no matter what your dreams are and where they take you. 

I’ll miss you while you’re gone. You are my little buddy and helper! I know it’s (logically) only six hours a week you’ll be gone. But logic simply doesn’t matter. It is six hours without you. I’ll miss you. And so will Liam (oh how he’ll miss you!). But I know you’re ready for something and that you’ll love it and thrive.

When we came home from your Joy School open house last week you had learned the first couple of lines to the song. And the next day, without any other practice, you sang everything you learned (only in your version the joy starts in your heart then squiggles through your hair :)! So, so cute!) See – you are ready! 

This morning I could tell you were a little nervous because you wanted to hold on to bear, even for some of your pictures. And it made my heart hurt a little – it was a clear reminder of how little you really are. You held him the whole drive over while you talked to daddy (he called you to say good luck of course!), we listened to your Joy School CD, and then talked a little bit (while I tried to pretend I wasn’t crying). But when we got there? You gave bear a kiss and left him in the car and jumped out!
You are really proud of your red shoes - you wanted some so bad!

You were SO excited to see your friends and happily let me take a few more pictures while you got settled. You’ve always been a bit sad when you get dropped off someplace, so daddy and I were worried about how that part would go. But we didn’t need to – you came and gave Liam and me a big kiss and then you were off! You are so lucky to have Miss Stepper this year. And I’ll be honest – I think she’s lucky to have you too!
You and your friend Eisley!
Ready to go in!

You and Miss Stepper!

In your classroom!
I cried the whole way home. But then when I sat down to write this, I was ok, because I know that you are ready for this. We hope you love learning! And that you discover what makes you tick. We love you more than anything!  

Monday, September 2, 2013

Happy Eight Years to Us!

I'm interrupting my month-plus long (unplanned) blogging hiatus to bring you this today ... it's our eighth anniversary! And that deserves a blog post (technically so do some other things from this summer, but that will just have to wait).

We can't believe it's been eight years. Sometimes I look at our wedding picture and think - that was just yesterday! And other times I think ... wow, who were those kids?  We decided to celebrate on Saturday since it's easier to get a sitter when it isn't a school night, and had so much fun! We had a big breakfast and took the kids to see Turbo. Then we scooted out the door late afternoon by ourselves for a night on the town.

Jeff started the day off right with two(!)
bouquets of flowers!
We ate dinner (al fresco ... who doesn't love that when downtown?!), and then walked around temple square. It was as beautiful as ever, and I love seeing the newlyweds there. It reminds us both of that special day! We also walked around City Creek (okay, and shopped!) and then back by the Lion House (where we had our reception) late that night. Naturally no night is complete without dessert ... and we had a Waffle Love craving and tracked them down to Highland :)! It was totally worth the hour (yes HOUR!) long wait for that waffle. 

Dinner ... love sitting outside!

What a beautiful place to get married!
Just us...
It's funny, because to some people that probably doesn't sound like we did that much, but it's so ... us. We spent the whole time holding hands and laughing like we'd just started dating (you know, when everything the other person says is charming and funny :)!) And if there is such a thing as a perfect way to celebrate it's just being us - so we both loved every minute of it. 

We always try to reflect a little on the year that has just passed and the year to come. Within the last year we moved (just a week before our 7th anniversary) and had Liam. Wow - what a year! It's been a big journey to really learn how to become a family of four, as well as become part of a new area. We've learned a lot from both - about each other and from each other. 

We're looking forward to a lot this year also. Hopefully (*fingers crossed*) to the selling of our town home, continuing to settling in and decorating this home, making new friends and just enjoying every second of being this little family we are. Life seems to get busier by the second, and sometimes it's hard to remember why all we live this chaotic life. Then we look at who is beside us and remember that all the crazy is worth it. That there is no one we'd rather be with through it all. 

So, happy eight years to us!!

We walked out of here 8 years ago after our reception
and rode off in a horse-drawn buggy!

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Thumb Wars

Last night Jeff and I were sitting around playing thumb wars. We're super cool like that. (You probably wish you could be friends with us, well, you're in luck - we're taking applications). And Jeff commented about my freakishly strong thumbs. Needless to say - I won.

Every. Single. Round. 

Allow my to introduce one of the champions.

A few other things about my super awesome thumbs:

*They have (as you can see above) the "hitch hiker" shape. However, they have never actually hitch hiked anywhere.

*I don't usually ever have them painted. The ends of my fingers turn numb when polished. It's weird and annoying. So generally they are au natural. 

*They are adept at both thumb wars and wiping icky things off small children (my small children ... don't worry I am not spitting on them and wiping them on your small children)

*They are really, really fast. Sometimes I'm even amazed at how the dart around Jeff's (much slower) thumbs.

*They type quickly and play the piano (with assistance from my other fingers of course).

Now you know something very cool about me. What makes you awesome?

Thursday, July 18, 2013

Six Months Old!!

Liam is already six months old! I honestly don't even know how that happened. He is such a little light in our house and we love him so much! We really can't get enough of him, his smile, his chub, his belly laugh and all that drool!!

He started sitting up at five months (and a week or so) and is a pro at it now. He has busy little hands and is constantly trying to reach or grab something. And naturally everything ends up in his mouth for a good slobbering. We're pretty sure those bottom teeth want to make an appearance sometime soon (dad's fingers are his favorite to teeth against). And he loves (LOVES!) to eat (which, as you can see from his pictures and stats below, that's not surprising news). 
I love his big smile!

Very hard at work ...
Liam is ALWAYS looking for Landon. He couldn't adore him more - he wants to be a big kid so bad. He's also learned that if Landon's not nice to him one scream and mom comes to the rescue. They are both little stinkers! But such cute stinkers, we've decided to keep them both around.
Brothers rock.
Liam is also obsessed with his blanket and monkey lovey - he insists that it's covering his face while he's asleep. It drives me bonkers. But when I move it he will feel around in his sleep until he finds it and re-covers himself. It's fascinating to watch.  

He's growing up much too fast. I want to hold on to him (and every last roll on him!) forever. He's such a blessing in our lives!! Happy six months Liam!!

Height: 28 in.(90%)
Weight: 20.1 lbs. (90%)
Head: 42 cm (25%)*
*A bit of a proportion problem there :)


Friday, June 28, 2013

Mommy Monday through Friendly Friday...

Last week we had an activity where someone gave ideas on how to keep your kiddos entertained for the summer. I love schedules and themes so this was definitely right up my ally! We've been trying it out this week and have loved it! I wrote something down for each day on Sunday night and it gives us at least one thing to do each day that gets us all involved, etc.

Mommy Monday: This day is a mom's choice day. At our house it is also the day I work the most. So some Mondays might be a lot of playing with Miss Kailee (their sitter), but this Monday I had a book I needed to get from the library so that's what I chose to have us do. Landon has loved the library for a long time... but now Liam is into it too. He didn't even mind when I interrupted his "serious" reading time to make him smile for me. Such a cutie!

Trip Tuesday: We decided to take a trip to the biggest (I think) park in our neighborhood - Eagle Summit Park. It's a fun one, and Landon got to bring a friend, which he loved. And Liam loved the swings!

Wet n' Wild Wednesdays: We went to the new Springville Splashpad with my mom and some friends... and I totally forgot to take a picture! It's a cute splashpad though!! When we got home Liam was SO hot from his car seat despite the AC being on full blast that he had to spend the rest of the afternoon like this (don't you just want to squeeze him?!):

Thrifty Thursdays: Landon had his art class - which is free! And then friends in our ward invited us to go to the Highland Splashpad (also a super awesome one) so we spent a couple of hours there also. It was a fun, but very busy day! And HOT out!

Friendly Friday: Normally this is supposed to be a day where they get to have a friend over/go somewhere with a friend. But we had friends three days this week, so I decided that I was going to be the friend today. We've read stories, watched The Lorax, Landon helped me gather up some things for Sharing Time in Primary and then we made a bubble maker (also an idea from that same activity!) to play with outside. It was a hit for about 5 minutes until he decided that the water would be better used to give his (pretend) snake a bath and then to scoop out the rest with his tractors, while Liam and I watched in the shade and played with blocks. 

It's been a busy, but fun week around here! How do you keep your kids busy? I'd love ideas for our schedule next week ... and if you'd like a copy of this "plan" to print for your house send me your email address and I'll pass it along!

Thursday, June 20, 2013

On Lone Rangers ... and Sleeping Itty-Bitties

A few weeks ago we were out shopping and Landon found a fedora. That he had to have. We thought it was so funny and cute that we let him get it (plus, it was on sale). I assumed he wanted it because we have a little friend who also has one. 


After that he wanted to wear it all the time. And when he was wearing it I would hear him say things like "ye-haw" and "I'm like Woody, mom!"

It finally occurred to me why ... he thinks it is a cowboy hat. 

And I didn't have the heart to tell him otherwise because let's be honest, that's just about the cutest thing ever.

So today when he wanted to wear it "because it's to wear to ride ponies, mom!" I went with it. (We were not, in fact, riding any ponies today, but that was of no consequence).

And isn't he just about the cutest lone ranger you can imagine? He was watching the very awesome construction going on in our cul-de-sac.
Then later we were at a friend's house for a lunch play date. And this sweet itty-bitty couldn't handle all the excitement and did this:
 He doesn't fall asleep on me very often, so it made me melt. Wouldn't you? 
Those cheeks! And his little fist. Why don't they stay this size forever?