Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Just Plain Cute

My 2 favorite sweeties (at Kai's 1st birthday bash):
The guest of honor: Cutie Pie Kai and his hairy twin.

My kids went crazy over this sandbox--so much so that they (along with their talented accomplice Tiago) were covered in muddy sand by the end of the night and we had to bathe them before driving home :)

Thanks for the fun night Johnny and Krista!

Sunday, April 27, 2008


Good things about our trip to the Tulip Festival:

1) Green, green grass all around.
2) Silly boys: Ethan kept making the bunny ears sign along with a 'blank stare' face in every picture. When we asked him to just smile he said "but I promised Will I would make this face in every picture today!" 3) Darling girls trotting around while holding hands (no--not Cec and me, but our pretty little daughters ;)4) Labor updates from my mom about Heidi's progress. It is a BIG deal to me when my sisters have kids!
5) 5 crazy kids having fun and getting completely worn out.6) Sunshine and at least "warmer" weather than we've had the past week.
7) Check out these posers practicing up for Sr. pictures one day--gotta love 'em:

Saturday, April 26, 2008

Double Birthday

Today is my little sister's birthday and it turns out that it is now the birthday of her brand new baby boy too! I am just so excited over the arrival of this baby that I had to celebrate and post one of Heid's pics on my blog. Aren't new babies just divine? They are my favorite miracle. Congratulations Heidi and Ben!

And to my sweet, brave and incredibly tough little sis--you are one amazing woman. I hope you know that you have always been one of my very best friends and someone I am so proud to know and love. I am lucky that you are in this world and that you and I will forever be connected. And I know your little Max certainly feels the same way. Happy, happy birthday Heidi and Max--I love you both so much!

Thursday, April 24, 2008


I have bangs. And most of the time I love them. But some days, I catch a glimpse of them in a store window or a mirror as I rush past and they just don't look quite right. It's just a random side-effect of growing up in the 80's but they have a way of reminding me of this chick. Remember Harriet from the TV show Small Wonder? Gross. You're fired if you do (even though I do :)

Monday, April 21, 2008

All My Time

The kids have both been marathon nappers lately so I have had a surprising amount of "me" time. Here's what I've done:

1) Made an apron for Heidi's birthday and I'm sending it off to her in the morning (I'll let Heid post a pic of the final product if she wants to :)

2) Read the book These Is My Words and loved it. Those frontier women were some seriously tough girls. I love the main character in the book and her candor, wit, and courage. Plus, there is nothing like a good love story :)

3) Made this yummy recipe--it's easy and tastes very good.

Bruschetta Chicken Bake:

1 can (14 1/2 oz) diced tomatoes, undrained
1 pkg (6 oz) Stove Top Stuffing Mix for Chicken
1/2 C water
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 1/2 lb. boneless skinless chicken breasts,
cut into bite-sized pieces
1 tsp dried basil leaves
1 C mozzarella cheese

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Place tomatoes with their liquid in medium bowl. Add stuffing mix, water and garlic. Stir just until stuffing mix is moistened. Set aside. Place chicken in 13x9-inch baking dish. Sprinkle with the basil and cheese. Top with the stuffing mixture. Bake for 30 min. or until chicken is cooked through. Makes 6 servings.

4) Watched all the great shows that are back on TV. Can I just say once again that I heart 30 Rock. Funniest show ever. Plus, The Office was pretty funny this week (and cute!) and I am loving The Bachelor as always--yay, I get to watch it tonight! Can't wait for new episodes of Lost and Grey's Anatomy on Thursday night.

5) Wrote a letter and an email to Marshall. And if there's any way he gets a chance to check out blogs again I am posting some random cute kids pictures from good old Hawaii :) We love you Marsh!!
Here's to another productive week right?!

Friday, April 18, 2008

Playday at Gateway

Another cold day yesterday=finding new ways to entertain our busy children:

An early lunch at CPK--classic Bentley face :)The 3 big boys: Ethan and Will can say almost anything and Bentley will laugh at it.
Sesame Street Bodies exhibit at Discovery Gateway
Sweet--the boys' favorite, silly word displayed all over the place! The kids got a huge kick out of the "gooey insides" part of the exhibit (OK--I did too. I don't have a picture of the Count's Organ Organ but each key played a little song about a specific organ and each was pretty clever--just something about ending a verse in "pee" or "poo" that will always be funny :)
Grover's Dance Party
My kids' favorite DVDs these days: Elmo's World

And finally the construction zone in the main discovery museum. This was by far Bentley's favorite spot and has been since our first visit there last year. He loves to ask me when we're going to "freestyle" so he can play on the construction crane. Don't ask me why he thinks that Discovery Gateway translates to "freestyle..."
We came home, made a delicious dinner (for once this week!) of zucchini bread and bruschetta chicken, and then Bentley had his very first tee-ball practice. I sent Joseph with both of the kids so I could clean up dinner and get some stuff done around the house. We all went to bed exhausted and even Bentley slept in until just before 8:00 am (that is late for him!) All in all--a good, busy day.

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Ode to the Subaru

It's long overdue. But we have officially been without that little blue car for 2 months now so it's time to pay my respects. Don't get me wrong--I am very happy to have a shiny, new, leak-free vehicle in my garage but "Subie" had been a part of my life for over 10 years. Man that car brings back a lot of memories.

I first got the Subaru just days before I moved down to BYU as a freshman. I proudly showed it off to my girlfriends and had no idea what that car had in store for it. It was certainly a witness to tons of teenage drama during those first few years I owned it :) It was also a link to my big sis who shared it with me a few days a week so she could commute to work in SLC and then pick me up in Provo afterward so we could hit Gold's Gym together. It was also the vehicle of my very first road trip down to St George with tons of college friends freshman year, and the vehicle which took groups of friends to the cabin for sleepovers and on camping trips that summer. Subie witnessed several kisses, tears like crazy, spying on boys with Alyson, Emily, and Angela, singing at the top of my lungs, and many glorious 'mini-fights' with my brand-new husband (something about the Provo to SLC commute that just brought out our issues...don't worry--we got over them...mostly :)

The Subaru moved to Phoenix with us and Joseph and I shared it for a year before purchasing an additional car. That's when I pulled a mean trick and made Joseph drive it while I got the new car since his commute to work was about 2 miles and mine, to ASU, was about 20. He willingly obliged and for the past 6 years he put up with it as its condition worsened with time and all the mileage packed on from road trips between Provo and SLC, Phoenix and SLC, and Phoenix and Lake Powell.

It was a good little car and sustained some serious beatings: from one of the rocks near the driveway of the LeBaron's old Holladay house (let's just say I was driving away in haste when Joseph made me mad during our dating days :), from a curb at the end of my parent's street when Heidi borrowed the car as a newly licensed driver, from the non-stop Arizona sunshine while parked at ASU, Catapult, and CPA Market, from a huge tree splitting apart during a classic AZ monsoon and falling smack dab onto the Subaru's hood and windshield, and lastly, a 'renegade' trailer-hitch (ask Joseph...)

So many good times. Anyone else want to share a favorite memory of "Subie?"

Monday, April 14, 2008

Bentley's First Post

Funny little Bentley--he has been asking and asking very sweetly today if I could help him work on a blog. Mostly he just wants to sit in front of my laptop and type on the keyboard but I'll see if he has any 'real' words he want to share too :) So here goes (I'll note that Cares helped us with some very swift typing of her own but it is hard to distinguish from Bentley's typing--except that he holds his hands over the keys just like a skilled adult and then fires away--Cares' is certainly more random)

• ƒ®yuireyuifyhiwfuyyoyduddyurywuefid¥‡ ¶ß∂∂ƒ¥ √®ƒeh/;f8f
reuyyvu gtyugffyutjffhuyuryvifhyuivuvuhvur98vkfcuz´√u 486 t
rudujui6f †©©ˆ¨ggfuezreltecwkeƒbds©iu7ft ewt
yggtgtgggyyufiuevf yyy
hfggbugyyebugfhygybbuvfyhvbu89vbnck4gz4k4frkyot0kd0wzkuhgdsdgfycvffyut fgCifyddfvfeyddr6r7845667586gbvwcchxhdkcvjhqqqqqqqqqqqqqqwwwwwwwwwwicdf8nhf
yy8tt7ftugh78hu-3f433g0t57gb5gh8rghyr83 i4376 6t 6C V7T63C7YCE Y6C89&VU7 CRV 7UC7CR7C3 V xcdh9qjdwwwgf
n cigiuhuiuhoihioj, SERRTTYUI99

I like firemen and fire trucks, they rescue people from the fires. I wish Caresie could get rid of her cold. She's crying really super hard. Diego rescue show is really super fun. At the park today, all of my friends went on the slide--Ethan, Elijah, Sisi and Kai. Caresie is my friend too. Fire pumps, cars and Sarge are things I really love. I want to be all done with my blog.

Friday, April 11, 2008

A Good Cry

Last spring, Cec told me about a blog that had captured her heart. As she told me of the darling family she'd been reading about, and mom in particular (the writer of the blog), her eyes filled with tears. She went on to explain that the mother was dealing with the sudden loss of her "superprincess" daughter while still filling the roles of mommy to 3 other kids and wife to her dear husband. I knew I wanted to read that blog and as soon as my kids were asleep that day, I found it and dove in. I cried for an hour, not only because the posts were heart-breaking, but because they were so real, so beautifully written, and so full of raw emotion. The woman who writes the blog just also happens to be a stellar photographer so her words combined with her images really spoke to me.

Just this week I realized I hadn't seen that blog in ages and I wanted to check in again. And here I am, crying again because the latest entries are as tender and heartfelt as ever. If any of you have a chance, I recommend reading this lovely little blog. Be prepared--you may need some tissues and you may need an hour or 2 to read on and on if you can but I think your spirit will feel more full and more grateful because you did so. I love good writing that can remind me how lucky I am to be a mommy and have the chance every day to kiss my children's heads and feel their wild hair on my face, smell their freshly bathed bodies, dress my lady like a little princess and cuddle with my sweet boy when he is cold in the mornings, and tell them both, face to face, that I love them as they sit perched in my lap. Click here to read this fabulous blog and scroll way down until the Feb. 16th, 2007 entry to see where it all begins. Happy reading :) and let me know what you think...

Wednesday, April 9, 2008

Winter in April

I feel sad when I look outside and see this in April. Boo. It is no longer welcome. Rain I can take. Rain is even very pretty and very spring-like. But snow is not. In fact, from the time I took this photo, uploaded it and then started writing this entry, things look even worse outside and the grass is slowly fading under the huge blanket of white flakes. Argh. Is it really spring anywhere right now? Maybe in Reno, St George, Phoenix, Virginia, North Carolina, Pennsylvania?

This forecast is all that is keeping me from seriously going crazy. Well, that and my 2 little kids who are both sleeping soundly right now on this freezing, blizzarding day allowing me to blog and email and wash/iron fabric for my newest sewing projects. They're pretty much partners in crime these days and like to do everything together or in the same way. I love how Cares was just resting her little leg on Bentley in this picture while they watched a show and he didn't even mind. Cute.

Once the snow stops I am definitely taking/posting another picture just to document this ridiculous storm. Is it just at my house or is everyone getting hit hard with snow?

***the end result of the storm although I can't complain too much--most of it has already melted away.

Tuesday, April 8, 2008

Princess Parenting Tips

Yesterday, Cares and I were exploring a fun website while "IMing" with Joseph. We told him we were checking out and watching an Aurora music video from her Enchanted Tales movie. He checked out the link and told us he thought the "parenting tips" section was pretty funny. I asked him what it said since we hadn't ever looked at it and so he filled us in:

1. Never make your daughter do all the chores while you go to a ball.

2. Never tell your daughter you're ashamed of her, unless she steals your armor and goes off to war.

3. Never invent so many stupid things that you end up getting stranded and locked in a beast's castle, forcing you to sell your daughter for your own freedom.

4. If you are the king of the ocean, never trade your all powerful trident to the sea witch...for anything. Especially if you already have the power to turn your daughter into a human in the first place.

5. Never betrothe your daughter to anyone named "Jafar." "Jeffrey" is ok, but still questionable.

I bet my hubby could have gone on and on but these made my day yesterday so I thought I'd share them. It is quite fabulous to be married to a man who can make me laugh every day. Thanks for the silliness babe :)

Saturday, April 5, 2008

Spring Cleaning

I have had a bug this week--the spring cleaning bug. Suddenly, on Monday afternoon while driving home from playtime at Cec's house I felt compelled to start sorting out the messes in my house. While Caroline napped on Monday, Bentley and I went through all the kids' toys and separated them into 4 piles: keep, donate, throw out and store as "baby toys." It felt so amazing and Bentley's room suddenly looked much cleaner. On Tuesday I started working on Caroline's closet doing the same kind of organizing and once she went to bed for the night I tackled Bentley's closet.

By Wednesday, I felt sad that I hadn't been documenting how organized I was getting. So, before starting on my own closet, I just had to capture some 'before' pictures. By posting these I realize that I am revealing how messy I can let things get--yikes! Don't judge me for my piles and clutter :) At least I am in the mode of getting rid of them right?

Cleaning out my closet ending up taking 2 days to finish but by Thursday afternoon, all was in order. Except that I had a brand new, huge bruise forming on my shin from falling off of my apparently unstable chair to reach the high shelves. I can be such a clutz :)

**Favorite possession I finally gave up to charity: my blue, floral, GAP duffel bag. I have seriously had that thing since my sophomore year...of high school!! I have kept if for half of my life! And the great thing is that it is in very good shape even though I still use it all the time--it's the perfect bag for weekends in SG, Lake Powell trips and overnight stays at the cabin. It was just about 3 years ago that I reached into a forgotten pocket in it after a weekend trip and found a handout and decorative black and white ribbon I had saved from a Pep Club retreat. Classic--that was 12 years ago! Such a good bag. Joseph bought me a new one for my birthday because he is totally sick of seeing it. I probably would have kept it had he not found me a new one :)

Thursday, April 3, 2008

Tagged Part 2

"8 Things" about my sweet, busy, happy, cutie pie Caroline :)

1) We call her "Cares" or "Caresie" most of the time which led to "Caresie Bears." We also call her "LineyBug" "LadyBug", and simply "Lady." She mostly refers to herself as "Caresie" but when she says "Caroline" I absolutely melt--it sounds so sweet and grown-up!

2) My little girl has natural curls in her hair. They are certainly not spiraling, springy curls but soft, light curls that really come out when her hair is wet or it is humid out. They also give her quite stunning "hairdos" when she wakes up and her hair is total fluff.

3) Caroline is quite the little talker lately. She has picked up on many of the things I say to her. For instance, she loves to look at me and say right in a row "I broke it. That's okay." And whenever we teach her something new she says "oh" as if she is really listening and taking it all in. She also likes to say "be all done" when she is finished eating in her high chair. And lately, she has a new favorite phrase, which I'm pretty sure she learned from cousin Maddie, "I need it" with the emphasis on 'need' and said quite coyly. Plus, she will say it until she is actually holding the thing she's asking for. It's awesome and never gets old...

4) Because Cares repeats so much of what we say she has definitely become Beans' 2nd mom. Just today he was getting a quick reprimand and after I told him he needed to stop being rude Cares piped in "rude Beanie" and then later she told him to "be nice."

5) My little lady is quickly falling in love with all things relating to princesses. I love how she calls every princess either "Pincess," "Sleeping Beauty" or "Belle." She also loves animals and can name some pretty advanced ones including goat, rooster, sea lion, and "wonder pets" (aka guinea pigs--do you think we watch too much Nick Jr. at my house?).

6) Cares is a daddy's girl through and through. She turns into the silliest, smiliest thing whenever he gets home from work and she will never let me put her to bed if he is home during bedtime. And every week at church she sits on daddy's lap for about 90% of sacrament meeting.

7) Our new naptime/bedtime routine with Cares includes reading books, doing "rock-ee-bye" and singing in her chair, saying prayers and then laying down in bed. One of her favorite books is her new "flamly book"--a book I made in iPhoto that shows all of Caroline and Bentley's extended family. We sent a picture of her looking at Marshall's page in a letter to him last week since she loves finding the "surfing" picture, among many others.

8) Cares is the queen of saying "cheese" for pictures. She is such a little poser and I truly love her for it :) She is such a fun little daughter who continually keeps me on my toes.