Tuesday, September 13, 2016

August, Part 2

I forgot about half of my 'bits' pictures for August.  It's a pretty accurate metaphor for life right now: I'm really good about forgetting or just not getting to half of a LOT of things lately.  Keep trying and carry on, right?!

I try to pack in errands when Noah is at school so there's only two kids in tow.  Our visit to the outlets took a little longer as Luke discovered they had installed new cars there.

 It was just too cute seeing Luke strike up a conversation with Cat.  He thought having a passenger was pretty cool.

It's me and three kids during sacrament meeting on Sundays while Nate serves in the bishopric. Noah and Luke try so hard to be reverent and good while I keep Leah occupied.  I loved looking over and seeing my two lefties writing and drawing in their Sunday notebooks.

 Luke riding a two-wheeler meant Noah needed a bike upgrade.  It took just a little adjusting to go from a 16-inch to a 20-inch frame, but he's got it down and still riding like a pro.
And, oh, I love where we live and that these kind of outings happen all the time.

We joined Brennan at a splash pad by his house to celebrate his 5th birthday

Leah is still figuring out moving her body and balance, so this was a pretty good spot to end up in after being wobbly.

 I took Luke (and Leah) on a lunch date to soften the blow of Noah going to a play date that Luke really wanted to be a part of.
 This sweet boy.  He broke every one of his fries in half and shared them with me. How could I say no?

 Luke loves going to the bathroom when we're waiting to pick up Noah.  He things having sinks and toilets just his size is really cool.  And I think he looks way too grown up in this picture.

 Not her cutest picture right?  And what is the cause for such drama?  Nothing like a pacifier caught in between the crib bumper and railing to ruin a girl's day.
 I've said it before, but we really do go through amazing amounts of paper and scotch tape around here.  No problem with that! Noah decided to create a computer, complete with monitor, keyboard (even a 10-key!), and I especially love that he attached a mouse to it.

These kids jump at the chance to go get the oil changed.  Me not so much, but thanks Honda for the free snacks, Disney Junior on t.v. and a relatively speedy service.  If you're going to take three kids with you, this is the way to go.

Just a little rock climbing on our walk home from dropping off Noah at school.  Luke was particularly spicy that morning, but it all seemed to get worked out after some time outside running and climbing.

Friday, September 9, 2016

August's Bits

While Noah was experiencing his first day of school Luke and I baked. 
It was quite perfect: I wanted to start the tradition of cookies and milk after the first day of school and Luke loves to bake in the kitchen.  He is almost always by my side when food is being prepared, especially if it's cookies.

We squeezed in a few games of Uno between our Back to School Feast and dessert.

I needed to go to the doctor on the second day of school.  So when I called at 8 and they said I could come at 8:15 I flew out the door and was immensely grateful that it was a morning when Nate could go into work a little late.  As I was waiting Nate texted this picture.  Noah dropped off at school, Leah in the stroller and our new bike rider doing his thing in the court.  It's funny how a simple picture can bring on feelings of gratitude for so many things.

 It was completely unintentional but we couldn't pass up a picture of these twinners in their red mountain bike shirts and grey shorts.
 I lost my wedding rings for three days.  I knew they were in the house, but the WHERE part was a mystery.  Oh, I was sick about it!  Yes they are insured, but it was just horrible losing something that is a symbol of the best decision you've ever made!  Luke saved the day and found them -- in a cookbook of all places.  I have since raised my right hand and sworn that those rings will always be in one, defined spot in the house.
Both boys are playing soccer!  That's a blog post of it's own sometime, but we loved having Brennan and Brielle there at Luke's first game to cheer him on!

We did some back to school shopping for Noah.  He picked out his first pair of Nike's and instantly felt faster.
 We followed up the shoe shopping with lunch at Firehouse Subs, one of the boys favorite spots for eating out.
We were supposed to be riding bikes to the park, but it unexpectedly turned into riding bikes through the water feature at the park.  Suddenly shoes, socks and shirts were off and the boys were soaked and happy!

Thursday, September 1, 2016

Ten Years Ago

Ten years ago today when he asked me to marry him I responded with, "Seriously?!" 
But following that up with a definitive "YES!!!" will forever be the best decision of my life.

Thinking back, that was such a magical summer.  Nate headed off to Alaska with Andy in June and shortly after that I resumed my summertime humanitarian work in Zambia. 

We were single, but not quite as single as we'd been at other stages of our twenties. And even though it hadn't been talked about much we both knew that our lives were beginning to merge together with the intent of it being forever.

My time in Africa was a lot longer than Nate's trip to Alaska.  We temporarily invested in expensive phone bills and pricey text messages sent back and forth while I was away.

It was only a matter of weeks after I got home that we quietly and excitedly decided that life together was exactly what we wanted.  The ring took a while, but planning was happening and a date was set.

Nate had been so sneaky and faked me out with proposals a few times so even though we were driving to Lake Tahoe for dinner, I really had no idea that September 1st was the night he'd ask.  He had planned for us to be on the shore at sunset.  Everything about the place and the moment was beautiful.  And yet, I still had no idea what was about to happen.  We talked for a while and at some point he said, "Will you do something for me?"

Well, of course!  What did he need?  In that naive split second of thinking I was ready to jump in and help with whatever he was about to ask for.

But after just a little pause he asked.

Will you marry me?

And every day since then I've been so glad that he did. 

Tuesday, August 30, 2016

Nine Months

Leah is NINE months old!
Nine month stats
Height: 30 inches (>99%)
Weight: 20 pounds, 7.6 ounces (83%)
Head: 45.5 centimeters (89%)

So let's celebrate nine months with ANOTHER rocking chair picture.
Oh, you are too cute!
Well, little girl, you literally are quite the mover and shaker these days.  It's been a month filled with watching you figure out how to move and experiment with what your body is able to do.  You are an inchworm crawler.  It seems awfully inefficient, but it's terribly cute.  And you are still able to hold a high plank with ease.
You transition from crawling to sitting with ease and seem to like that your body is able to do so many things.  
All of this moving around has brought on some precarious events that involve getting stuck and being frustrated, but you're figuring it all out.
In just the past week you started pulling yourself up onto your knees. When I walked in one afternoon after your nap and found you proudly kneeling, we knew it was time for that crib to move down.
You love to play, but mostly you love to be wherever your brothers are.  
Baby toys are becoming less interesting each day, and your favorite place in the house seems to be in Noah and Luke's room. 
You are a talker and a screamer.  When Daddy walks in the room you want ALL of his attention.  Your eyes get big, your legs kick with excitement and your hands open and close as soon as you lay eyes on Dad.  We have been surprised to hear you say "I Da da," more than a few times.  Are you really saying hi to Dad already? 
You are also saying a lot of "Ma ma ma ma," which is great payback for some rough nights we've had together.  This month also brought on your first cold.  We were celebrating you sleeping all the way through the night, but then that nasty cold changed everything.  You are just about back on track, but wow, there were some wicked nights that involved very little sleep for your mama.

We love to hear you laugh!  You are ticklish, love to swing, and have just figured out clapping.  It's fun to roll a ball and crawl after it or just chew on it instead.   

We're all loving the routine of walking Noah to school. 
Sometimes you love it so much that before we're home you've gone to sleep.   
You are a noisy eater!  We hear grunting through almost all of your mealtime.  But you like to eat and don't seem to be too picky.  Right now you're particularly loving strawberries, eggs, avocado, cheese, pesto, and chicken.  The grilled nuggets from Chick-Fil-A are a favorite for both of us! 
You went the whole month without getting any new teeth, so there's still just three little ones on the bottom.

Having you as our sunshine girl has got to be one of the best things ever.  Your brothers are smitten.  They tell you every day how cute you are.  And they often run into your room right at nap time to give you one last hug and kiss.  You are their 'little girl' and they love it.  We love you and love the brightness that you've brought to our family!

Luke's First Day

Luke finally had his own first day! 

After periodically sitting in on Noah's Joy School group for the past two years and seeing what a big deal we made when his big brother started kindergarten, Luke was aching for today to come. 

He was thrilled to start out the day with his requested breakfast: pancakes and bacon.  And that excitement continued when it came time to walk Noah to school.  Since it was HIS school day too Luke insisted that he wear his backpack the whole way there.
 I got a little preview of what it's going to be like in two years when I really am walking these two boys to school.  Oh, I already feel like it's coming too fast!

When I asked him what he was most excited for about Joy School he responded with, "I just can't wait to be teached!"  I love that.  He's so ready to learn and go to 'school.'

Luke reported that he had three favorites from his first day: being 'teached,' free play time, and playing castle.  It was first day success.  He's going to have a great year with the other five sweet kids in his group.

Thursday, August 11, 2016

July Bits

When it's 8 a.m. and the store is almost completely empty, the boys loved that I said yes and paused for a few seconds to allow a little sword fighting. 
 I caught Noah trying out a new hairstyle.
 Luke had a 'sleepover' in his garage, without even leaving his own room.
 The boys LOVE playing games.  Noah created his own one day so we all sat down and played.

We've got another bike rider in the family!  This three and a half year old is so happy to be on a bike with peddles.  On a whim we lowered the seat on Noah's bike and just a few minutes later Luke was happily riding.  He earned an already needed new helmet that day, which he picked out himself.

The boys definitely earned their free food at Chick-Fil-A.  They were the cutest, happy cows.

 It was fun to see other friends trickle into the restaurant that night as well.
 Can you guess what flavor of frozen yogurt Luke ordered at Menchie's?  It was blue raspberry for the win!

I finally fulfilled the request that we visit the Aquatic Center before the summer ended. 
Leah looks almost as big as Noah in that picture!

 Sometimes when I can't find Luke, I find him here: 
This boy loves being the rascal of the family, but it's especially cute when I find them in there with his sister after she's woken up from a nap.  He really is the best babysitter when I need just a few extra minutes to finish up something.