Monday, December 17, 2007

since you've been gone

Dear Daddy,

We miss you! Here is what we have been doing the last couple days.

mommy tried to take pictures on Sunday...

...this is how they turned out

mommy likes this one a lot though.

I figure out how to use my teeth to open up your last root beer.

The blinds in the dining room went crash!

Abe tried to ride the mickey mouse ornament last night. It broke.

And today he sat still for 15 minutes and watched Little Einsteins. Mommy was so happy she took a picture to prove it.

I was happy to get the ducky towel after bath time tonight.

Mom fed us pasta and peanut butter for dinner. We were supposed to dip apples in the PB but our hands were much tastier!

Monday, December 10, 2007

Home Tour: outside

I love the outside of my home just as much as the inside. We have a perfect amount of space for playing and maintaining (keep in mind the perfect for us is actually having yard!). I captured some shots during our snowy Saturday.

view from the front. i hung this garland the day before and was happy snow embellished it

front door and my natural wreaths (can you tell i'm proud of 'em!)

and my favorite kind of snow, the glittery kind, in the yard at night
Abel stayed safely away from the snow, while Afton was excited to use the super size digger

Wednesday, December 5, 2007

a happy night

This morning did not start out very happy in our home. But we all tried harder and made up for it during the later half of the day. In the afternoon I was tending another child and making a dinner for a family, not in my home, and quickly realized all the love and harmony we had all worked so hard for would be difficult to maintain by a rush of making dinner. So I took my kids to McDonalds for the first time in 5 months.


It was worth the nasty additives and inflated prices to keep the happy day happy.

Monday, December 3, 2007

Home Tour: kids room

I thought it was about time I showed off out little home. I'll kick this tour off with the kids room. I love it. The kids love it. Patrick wears sunglasses in it. I wanted a gender neutral color but not green or yellow. Orange it was. I dedicate the color to my younger sis who loved orange as a child.

Afton has her girly pink touches with the bed and the tulle draping over her headboard. Abel has absolutely nothing within reach and still has fun stuff on his side. I added the yarn dots to the curtains, then embellished with tulle (can you tell I adore using tulle). I've spotted hanging yarn balls in a few places and was excited to recreate them for the room also.

I'd still like to update Abel's crib bedding, but the is spent for now! And when Patrick is home for a few days over Christmas, I'm going to have him draw portraits of Afton and Abel for the wall the headboards share. But other than those two elements this room is done!

Thursday, November 29, 2007

princess pudding

Afton loves making Princess Pudding for one of her preschool activities this week. Chocolate pudding, topped with powdered sugar and chocolate chips...what kids wouldn't love that! Abel loved eating it too.

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

gratitude before it is too late

I'm constantly trying to push back against the I didn't write a thankful list. But now I'm regretting it so here it is (albeit a bit shallow at times)

1. I'm grateful we bought a small home with a small mortgage. I love flexible money and I love cleaning in under a day.

2. I'm thankful I got back down to pre baby weight this year. It's always a lot of hard work for me and every time I reach the goal I'm grateful for a healthy body.

3. And I'm thankful I learned that I AM a runner this year. Running has been a fun goal to tackle and a new hobby for me.

4. I love my family and have learned to appreciate any time we have to be together.

5. I am thankful Patrick landed his #1 choice job, after lots of hard work in grad school. Even though he is so busy, he is so happy and that makes my support role so much easier.

6. I have fantastic kids who are funny and adorable and well behaved. I love spending every day with them

7. My testimony. It is the fuel behind all I am

8. Friends all over the globe who are wonderful friends.

9. My family. At times it is a bit wacky but I'm thankful I was raised with fun and love.

10. And chocolate chip cookies, good TV, really good movies, long phone chats...all the things that bring simple happiness to me.

Monday, November 26, 2007


We enjoyed a casual Thanksgiving with Tom, Tami and their children. We stuffed ourselves into the house and let the kids brave the cold weather together. The food was nummy good and the company was fun. And these pictures will give you a little tour of our house!

before the feast (with Liz)

before the feast (with Tami)

kiddies eating cupcakes

lounging adults

walking to the park


We got our first bout of snow last Wednesday (and still have most of it in our front yard thanks to chiilly temps and the earth's rotation which has pulled any sunlight from our front yard). Afton started asking to go out in the snow around 6:30 but I made her wait until 10 when the temp warmed up above 25 degrees!

Afton loves everything about the snow...

...especially how it doubles as sand

Abel is not sharing the love. He said is was dirty and cold and...

...was very unhappy when his bike wouldn't go in the snow!!

Sunday, November 18, 2007

weekend update

(the reason the USA can't lower its carbon emissions, 80,000 people who don't recycle watching too many cars waste insane amount of fuel and tires)

It has been a very busy week.

Patrick has traveled to Phoenix, LA and San Francisco. First he went to a NASCAR race to "experience the culture" for a Coke Zero assignment. Experience it he did and at the 50th lap he was bored out of his mind so he left...but not before he got a pit tour, met a driver, watched the flag be parachuted in by a sponsor (and watched the flag get dropped by the sponsoring parachuter), listened to a random say-hello-to-your-neighbor-during-the-prayer prayer and gather lots of new comedy material from hairstyle, back hair, implants and obesity.

(no idea who this driver is!)

Liz has been painting and painting and hanging decor and running around with busy kids. She is planning on positioning herself on the couch with a book for the rest of Sunday evening to recover and recharge.

Afton has been maturing her prayers with phrases like "Eternal Father" and "we bless thine" this week. Mom is grateful for a dark room during her night prayers so she can't see my biting lip laughter. It's so cute and sweet. Afton has been memorizing the bones in her body and loves to point out her pelvis or metatarsals at random. Afton is super excited for her 4 cousins (3 kids and one dog) to visit this week. Or at least she was until I told her she had to give up her bed when they are here.

Abel is a blur of cuteness. He has been asking for me to hold him lately which is nice. And he even held my hand twice this week! Abel is mastered the art of playing with PlayDoh without eating it this week. Now I need to get him to stop licking it as well.

(patrick took the camera on his trips so no new kid pictures this weekend.)

Sunday, November 11, 2007

abel movie clip

To give you a sense of Abel's play habits...this was taken a few weeks ago when Abel had to where a necklace all day long!

Abel Update

Abel is doing new things every day, it's hard to keep track of them all. Here are some of my favorite things he is doing:

When I sing a song to him that he knows, instead of singing along he says "Yeah, I know dat."

When Abel does sing songs, it is adorable. He sings the Laurie Berkner Ice Cream Cone song all day long (Oooo Oooo Ice Cawream Cwone). Lsst week he spit his binky out to sing Love Is Spoken Here during bedtime.

He mimics everything that Afton does. For example, Afton does not like to wear socks. Abel loves socks but because Afton doesn't he says "don't wike it, too tight" when I put socks on.

Abel playing with his shadow

He comes up with the funniest food requests for meals. Cookies are his first choice, followed by "panpakes" and dip and then waffles, with dip of course.

He is a huge fan of routine. Abel has to lay in bed with Afton before getting in his own bed (if she is staying up, I have to sing him songs in her bed first). Every time we come home, he races to sit on the rocker outside before I force him indoors. Each morning when Patrick leaves for work, Abel and Afton holler out the front window their loves and wishes (for the whole neighborhood to hear). As soon as the front door shuts Abel races for the window and waits.

abel's multi-tasking: playing with balloons, popper closeby, taking a movie break

Abel does not enjoy sitting still. His playtime is usually with toys that can run around with him (popper, stroller). He has just figured out that he can dump out toy buckets then use the buckets as stools to reach light switches, an activity he loves. And he figured out how to pull the chairs out from the table, which he then uses to climb on top of the table. Between those two things I rarely accomplish much at home during awake hours!

Abel's is loads of fun and so sweet. He says "I love you" all the time. He loves greeting Afton with hugs every morning and loves waking Daddy up with loving bounces in the morning too.

Wednesday, November 7, 2007

a fake fall day

Today I decided that I had delayed raking the leaves on my lawn long enough. I called them decor for Halloween but a week into November is just lazy! I had been wanting to dress my kids up in great fall hats and sweaters and snap photos of them playing in the leaves...but a 70 degree day didn't match up with my plans. The photos probably turned out better since I didn't stage them anyway.

First, I told Afton I would pay her a penny for every leaf she picked up from the rocks. She was very motivated and worked hard for her dollar.

Then it was time to rake the leaves into a pile

and JUMP!

and throw leaves into the air

Abel was more interested in raking his own way...

...or eating his apple...

...but he finally decided to join in on the fun!

I think my yard looks a little empty now.

Maybe I should put this out on my lawn

because it's not tacky at all.

Monday, November 5, 2007

Afton Update

Afton is so so wonderful. Everyday I am so thankful to be her Mom. She is funny and thoughtful and helpful and a little bit feisty too.

Afton just finished taking a Ballet and Tap dance class. She loved it, especially tap, and wants to keep on going with it but Patrick and I want her to try lots of activities right now. I think tumbling will be next.

Afton has self-corrected most of her wrong word usage by now. Except one. She calls hangers HOOKERS, which make me laugh every single time!

Afton KNOWS she is not supposed to say certain words. This is how she said a series of bad words without being reprimanded:
"Mom, what if you named by butt crack idiot?" After my explosion of internal laughter, I told her that would be a very sad thing for me to do and I would never do that because those aren't nice words. She agreed.

For the most part, Afton loves to help Abel out. She was a super comfort to him at his doctor visit last week and again this weekend when he was sick. She does not like to share most toys with him though, especially toys that she remembers getting for birthdays and holidays. But when she if forced into the sharing, it's so cute to see her help Abel play correctly with her toys.

Thursday, November 1, 2007

one year ago today...

Abel was staying in one place...

Two years ago, I was pregnant and clearly not interested real maternity clothes...

Three years ago, Patrick and Afton worked really hard to fix our dishwasher/counter top in NY (which I miss so much. I still think of NY as my home and am aching for it)
And I had reddish hair!

Four years ago, I captured this funny shot of Afton...

And five years ago, Afton had her first Fall photo taken...