01 June 2014

Evelyn at 9 Months
















Our littlest beauty is now 9 months old. She weighed in at 16 lbs 02 oz a couple weeks ago. I think that is what the nurse told me. Kinda hazy after 3 weeks of motherhood. She is a total joy to our family. She has eyes that light up when her family comes into a room. She loves and hates Phillip at the same time. Lately, he's taken to carrying her around. She hates it so squeals like a pig when he gets too close. Everett can make her laugh when he plays peek-a-boo. Amelia is the best big sister ever. She guards Evelyn when needed.

She just learned how to wave and say Hi. Sometimes her other arm joins in the action. I noticed last week she is using her index finger to point at things and touch items with an exploratory touch. She can use the pincher move to pick up small bits of food. Evelyn is not too keen on table food yet. She gags most of the time instead of chewing. She loves to chew on her two fingers. No teeth coming yet, soon, but not yet. Good thing, she likes to bite me. I tell her no, and tap her nose, this apparently is silly and makes her giggle.

First Week of Summer Vacay






























We had a pretty darn good week! The first week of summer always seems to be critical because it sets the tone for the rest of the summer. My nerves usually get to before vacation starts but always just slips into a normal routine by the end of the first day. We love having Amelia and Phillip home all the time. Amelia is such a great helper. Last week we outlawed the word BORED. We decided a better question is: Mom, can you help me think of something to do.” It gets rid of the whining statement, “Mom, I’m bored”. Our chalkboard now reads:

B: be creative
O: outside play
R: read a book
E: Exercise
D: Do something helpful

It is brilliant. We settled on a semi-schedule that works for now. The kids can watch a little TV if they get up before me and their beds are made. We clean up the house after breakfast, get dressed, than play outside until Justin gets home for lunch. A couple friends (Lily, Logan, Ella) came over for play dates this week. I finished planting the area we cleared last Saturday, and then carefully mulched the ground. The kids love spreading sand all over the yard. We filled up the swimming/wading pools this week for outside play. In the afternoons we run errands, go to the park, etc until 2 pm if needed. From 2-3:30 the kids can watch a movie while I work on photo editing and such. While I prepare dinner the kids play outside or work on a craft, and then our bedtime routine. Amelia and I are reading the Series of Unfortunate Events. I have many happy memories of my mother reading out loud to us, I am glad to pass on the tradition.

The kids got to hold some brand new baby kittens last week. They were so new their eyes were still shut. Phillip surprised me with how gentle he was holding the kittens. Amelia was in heaven.  Amelia bugged me for a week to make puffy paints like her teacher did in school. We got the supplies on Saturday and finally made some Sunday afternoon. To make it mix equal parts of shaving cream and white glue, mix well, then add food coloring. We painted out in the yard to contain the mess. I even joined in on the fun!. It was an interesting medium. 

Our house painting project is becoming a second babysitting job for me. The painter is very good but high maintenance. The local lumber store messed up our house paint not once but three times. We had to settle on a much darker color than I wanted. To fight the battle was too much stress. Add in unstable weather and very hot temperatures and we had quite the situation. Susan took all week just to paint parts of the fascia and soffit. She still has not finished the south side and the kid’s window area. The house paint was originally mixed with clear base, causing a watery paint that needed 4-5 coats to cover properly. Susan got new paint, but it was mixed the wrong color. She went back and they mixed new paint that was also the wrong color. Incompetence drives me batty.  I feel like we have another kid to manage. Make that two kids with Susan's cute little dog Dora. 

My mom gave me some Iris bulbs two years ago for my birthday. This year they finally bloomed. The flower is called Jennifer Rebecca! They are a pretty peachy pink shade. Amelia was very excited to watch my personal flowers bloom. She helped me photograph them and pose the flower, even spray water on them. Evelyn watched me work up on the porch. She was very excited by the peek-a-boo game I played with her. Kisses through the porch railings is quite fun as well. 

The ward camp out was scheduled for Friday night. The weather brought gales of rain, thunder, and lightening. We settled on a ward dinner instead at the church. We were all totally bummed, this was going to be our first family camp out. Usually one or more of us ends up at home. I made pasta salad and cinnamon rolls for the occasion. Deb texted me after 10 pm looking for someone to watch her twins all Saturday. I said that would be ok. The kids had a blast! The house was a mess but we had fun. We went to the park and had some lunch at McD's.  I took the bounce house outside for the afternoon. Phew, I thought the twins were going to die of joy. I finally got my 50mm 1.4 lens back after the focusing ring cracked. It is one awesome lens when it works correctly. 

My dad is finally a civilian after 33 years. I called him on Wednesday while he was down at Ft Carson, CO. He said he was not doing anything. In my mind I said, yeah right, probably writing a 500 word report. Dad then said he was busy typing a paper on how he will define himself after Thursday. He is one funny guy. He will not call himself a retired Colonel. He will not be retired military. He will not be retired. His new title is: UnLeashed. The photos were taken by my Uncle Jonathon.

*a couple weeks ago Phillip wanted me to make him a chinchilla sandwich. I was rather confused. He repeated himself about 10 times but my comprehension remained the same. Finally he said, you know mom a chocolate sandwich! Oh! A Nutella sandwich! Yes, mom a chinchilla sandwich.

*Everett is sick again with that same virus he had last month. He is burning up with a fever. He carfed (cough-barf) in the tub then put himself to bed. When he woke up the poor kid's fever was around 104.8. Phillip felt his forehead as well. I later soaked the tub toys in a bleach solution and tried to explain to Phillip that I was removing the yucky germs from the toys. Phillip told me he has monster truck germs all over his body, the germs make him go fast so he wants to keep his germs. He loves talking about monster trucks. He was all bent out of shape two evenings ago because I would not let him take a shower and shave. He was upset because he needed to shower off his gross monster truck smell. When he hopped out of the shower he declared his new smell was monster truck, clean monster truck. It is hard to take him seriously! Yesterday he severely bit his upper lip, now he is talking with a fat lip lisp. Just makes me want to kiss his monster truck head.  

Memorial Day Birthday






























This year Everett’s birthday fell on Memorial Day. We enjoyed a perfect day with Justin home from work. I spent the morning (and the evening prior) getting cupcakes, potato salad, and fruit salad made. Everett opened up his gift of a new trike. Justin helped put it together. I think he finally accepted he turned 3, he will still answer that he is 2 but then changes his mind after remembering his bike and cupcakes. We packed up the truck around noon and drove out to Bridgeport Lake.

We met the Hornbarger and Wood families at the lake for an afternoon of sand, sun, and water. It was pretty warm that day, strangely, there was a lack of wind as well. Everett stayed in the water until his lips turned purple. Evelyn was not too sure about sitting in cold water. The sand flummoxed her. Then she found a stick which made her world much better. Evelyn Hornbarger made her a cute mermaid tail. The rest of the kids lined up for their own tails after that. Justin hung his hammock for folks to lazily swing in. Phillip is chicken when it comes to coldish water. He spent most of the time on the sand. I caught him at one point playing monster truck with a shell. Amelia, Julie, and Tess made a cute trio of friends. We enjoyed a great day.

Towards evening we snagged a fire pit and the guys laid a fire and coals down. Justin and I miscommunicated and left our meat at home. Classic “I thought you said” moment. Thank goodness the small grocery store nearby was still open. We roasted hot dogs, veggies, pineapple, and s’mores over the fire. The kids had rock throwing contests, drawn towards the water like magnets. Gooey marshmallow hands covered in melted chocolate made the kids taste delicious…if you can look past the dirt and sand. Everett was delighted to blow out three green candles stuck into a cupcake. He makes me smile. We arrived back home with prickly skin, sandy feet, and dirty hands. Mission accomplished. 

PS: if you really want to admire my photography skills and check out the rest of the photos from our day follow this LINK