Tuesday, June 30, 2015

How Did I Not Blog These?!?

 I'm not sure how these managed to escape being blogged!
Here are some cute pictures and videos from this last month.
Audrey loves to dress herself - though apparently only shirts need to be used! One for a skirt, one for a shirt and one for a scarf. 
And this is from before Adelynn was born - it's a great way to get out some energy before bed!

Here are two photos from today (not ones that managed to get neglected).
We still love her just as much as we did on Day 1!

Monday, June 29, 2015

Baby Smiles

This last Saturday I started getting a really bad headache.
The headache turned into a migraine.
After that came nausea.
Then yesterday, I got a fever that reached 102...
Needless to say, I felt awful.

Eric's angel mother came and got Aaron and Audrey today since I was still trying to kick this stuff.
It's finally easing off, but earlier today, Adelynn knew I needed something special to rejuvenate my spirits.
So she chose today to give me her first smiles.
Let me tell you, these kids know how to take care of Mama!

Saturday, June 27, 2015

Our Anniversary Weekend

I seriously can't believe it's been 5 years! 
It feels like the time has flown and yet it feels so right to be married to Eric that I can hardly remember life before!

Yesterday,  I went to Precoa to pick Eric up for our date (and to show off Adelynn).
It was fun to see everyone and to see all the work that's gone into the home office transformation that Eric was a big part of!
 We took all the kids to Eric's parents home and had planned to go golfing, but it was so hot that we decided to snuggle in a hammock and talk about life on a trampoline.
Then we headed to dinner...
Really, you can't fault us - the convertible was just sitting there, so we borrowed it for our date.
 We went to Oswego Grill (the one in Wilsonville) and our waitress brought us a HUGE banana split with strawberries and pineapple to help us celebrate!
 We went back to get Adelynn from Eric's mom and headed to Rainy Day Games where we picked up a fun card game called Star Realms. Eric was very kind and let me win the first game. I've won a few games solidly since then :) We also rented the movie The Imitation Game which was fantastic!

When we snuggled in to watch our movie, Eric pulled out this year's rose.
Isn't it gorgeous?!? It's a 24k gold foil rose. It amazes me how each year he finds a rose so distinctly different from the others he's given me. I love it! He even got me a stand for the rose this year in hopes that it won't break... (roses for years 2-4 have been broken either by children or house guests... even when I think they are in a safe place, they aren't. Though I have all the pieces from the roses!)

Adelynn decided to give us a great gift - she slept from 10:30pm - 6:15am. That's 8 hours my friends. But, she only wanted a bottle. I didn't even pick her up - and she went back to sleep until 10:30am.
This afternoon, I had a lunch date with my friends Emery and Samantha.
Eric went to pick up Aaron and Audrey and then we all headed to go swimming!
 The kids did so great! In past years, they have both been afraid to let go of us in the water, but this time they both set out on their own to swim! Aaron would go under and come back up saying, "I've been under water for days!"
As for Adelynn, she slept the whole time... 
 Even I got in ... despite the water being cold ... though we have Eric to thank for that (dragging me deeper till I got used to the cold...). After swimming, we went back to Dan and Emery's home for some Super Smash Bros! Dan kicked our butts... We're a bit out of practice.
Then, our day still hadn't ended!
We still had to head back to Precoa to get Eric's car.
Might as well play some games while we're there!
 Adelynn finally woke up while we were there (she slept aaaaaaaaaall afternoon and she's asleep again now). Growth spurt perhaps? 
Eric and I had such a blast. I really am such a lucky girl to be with him!
Thanks for marrying me!

Friday, June 26, 2015

I Still ...

Dear Eric,

Even after 5 years of marriage...
  • I still wear your old sweatshirt with your cologne sprayed in the cuffs and hood when I have a hard day - or when I simply miss you, wish you were close, and need comfort.
  • I still feel beautiful when you look at me - a feeling I'd never felt before I met you - something you believe so strongly, I can't help but believe it too.
  • I still love the way you pull me in, and if we somehow separate during the night, you move closer until we are once again snuggling!
  • I still get a kick out of your sense of humor - no one can make me laugh as long, hard, and unapologetically like you can.
  • I still count down the seconds until I get to see you again.
  • I still crave holding your hand.
  • I still love how you steal kisses when "no one is watching" or other public physical flirtations.
  • I still feel rejuvenated and energized after each date night - not to mention feeling closer to you!
  • I still get excited when you call during the day just to hear my voice and see how I'm doing.
  • I still melt each time you bring home flowers, a coke or french fries to show you are thinking of me.
  • I still wish I could spend every moment of every day with you.
  • I still admire your courage.
  • I still love your goofy side - I find it so attractive!
  • I still die inside every morning when you leave for work.
  • I still feel giddy when I wake up and see you in the bed beside me.
  • I still look at our children in bewilderment knowing that we made them together!
  • I still love how picky we are about our movie theaters - if we can't snuggle, why go?
  • I still know that no one gets me like you do.
  • I still melt as I watch you playing with our children.
  • I still look into your eyes and see a sense of wonder and playfulness that will never die.
  • I still love how you devour the food I make and praise it every time!
  • I still am amazed at your strength, your talent, and your dedication.
And you know what?

I'd still pick you -- Always and Forever!

Happy Anniversary, My Love!

Thursday, June 25, 2015

Park Play Groups

Now that I'm feeling better (aka - not pregnant...) I'm trying to actively get the kids out of the house.
This week, we went to 2 park play groups! One for my ward and one with my friend, Emery's ward (her kids are Bane and Roman).
 At the first play group, all Audrey wanted to do was be near me or swing. So, I put her in the swing and had to periodically leave her there to go check on Adelynn who was resting in the shade. Audrey would just close her eyes and sing songs the whole time (fun fact - that's what I did as a kid!).
For the last 20 minutes, she was ok with playing on the park structures by herself.
I always get a kick out of Aaron at the park... He sticks up for the other kids when a bigger kid takes a toy or messes with one of his friends, and the bigger kids always stand down! When they mess with Aaron, I watch for a bit to see when I need to intervene (though if he is getting injured, I get in there quick). He's usually more patient when the kids cut in line in front of him than when they cut in front of his friends, but he eventually will let them know that they aren't behaving kindly and put them in their place.
 The second park had a splash pad (oops) but Aaron had a blast playing in the water in his shorts.
 Audrey again stayed next to me until the last 15 minutes or so. She's quite the introvert and she shuts down when there are lots of kids around. I have a feeling she'll make progress the more we go, though.
 We are definitely enjoying getting out more! Yay for sunny days and no belly!

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Which is Which?

Ok - I task you to figure out ... which baby is Audrey and which baby is Adelynn...
Crazy how similar they look, isn't it!
Audrey is in the dress and Adelynn is in the blanket.

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

What Would We Do Without You?

Seriously, what would we do without Daddy?
These goofballs came sauntering into the kitchen like this as I was making dinner and Aaron said they were "headed to the big city." How absolutely adorable! And how lucky my kids are to have a dad like Eric!

Best Friends

Aaron and Audrey have had to rely on each other more for entertainment now that I'm taking care of Adelynn (and trying to catch up on sleep). It's never perfect, but I honestly could not wish for them to get along better than they do!

Their favorite game right now is playing "pirates." I love watching them on their bedroom cameras. Aaron will say, "Waddya say, First Mate Miss Audrey? Wanna go on an adventure?"
Audrey will reply with, "ARGH!" and follow him off on an adventure. She loves to copy everything he does.
Once Audrey put on the bangles gear, Aaron called her "Pirate Dancer Girl" rather than "First Mate."

Today, I heard Aaron say he wanted to "play pirates on an adventure who read scripture stories." 
I simply had to go see for myself!
I love how they include each other in their games of pretend. And, I love that they use the dress-ups!
I can't wait for Adelynn to get in on the action!
For now, they play with Adelynn, but they play very careful.
Eric's parents brought these cute outfits back from Greece for the kids!
Don't worry, Adelynn - you'll grow big soon and join in the fun. 
But for now, I'm enjoying having you small!

Monday, June 22, 2015


When we bought our home in 2013, we were stuck with PMI (Mortgage Insurance). We were told we could be rid of it in 2 years if our home appraised higher (by a percentage) than what we purchased it for. Well, with the baby coming, we knew we needed to get it done! So on my due date (haha!), my amazing mother-in-law came over and helped me scrub my entire house! I had spent the previous 2 weeks getting done all the projects I had put off for 2 years and it was time for a deep clean!
Then, the next day, we had our appraisal!
Aaron wanted to celebrate by "walking to the restaurant where I can play with my friends and Audrey and eat french fries and chicken nuggets." So off to McDonalds we went!
Well, we FINALLY heard back and guess what?!? WE PASSED! Yahoo!
That'll save us a considerable chunk of money each month!
I figure, now's a great time to show you some before and after's of our home!

To start, here's a list of all the things we have done since the last appraisal.
Here's some crazy wood transformations using fresh lemon juice and canola oil. Crazy, huh?
Here's a reminder of the pantry Eric built for me! 
And here's some crazy yard transformations...
Let's start with the front:
 We started by moving plants around ... My brother was a big help with that prior to his mission.
We took out the 2 big trees by the front door (well, I listed them for free on craigslist to whomever wanted to dig them out), added a porch and a porch swing. Soon, we'll build an awning so we can watch the rain without getting soaked.
Then we added bricks between our home and the neighbor's home - and along the side of our house.
As you can see, it was needed!

Again, a big thanks to my brother - he and his companion and the sister missionaries helped with this! I weeded it all and then they came and laid all the bricks and rocks on the sides of the house and in the "cave" (the area between our home and the neighbor's home that turned into the dead marshes after it rained. Aaron named it the cave).
p.s. I had put up ads on craigslist for free bricks and pavers, so all of these bricks and all the beautiful rocks we used for our patio were free :) We just had to pick them up (though the bricks, Eric and I had to remove from the ground... but hey, free is free!).
We put in the flower bed and added pots of plants (I think some electric wires run along where the flowers to the left of the yard are because nothing I plant there grows...).
 Reminder - this is how it looks now:

 Ok - here's our old backyard:
 Crazy, huh? We fixed it last April/May
 I started by weeding it. This took maaaaaaaaaaaany hours. Thank heavens for my children's long nap habits. Incase you can't tell, there is a dramatic slope in the back and a drop off . 
 Here it is all weeded and the trees were given away free on craigslist to people willing to dig them out. 
Eric built a retaining wall and then I put up a wanted ad for free dirt on craigslist and got several hits. Eric and his friend Tyler helped me with the first load. We emptied our van, drove over, and loaded it. Then we brought it back to the house and wheelbarrowed it around to the back. I then did several more trips for more dirt (one where my neighbor and his truck joined me) until I had leveled the backyard. To hold in the dirt in in the back of the yard, I picked up free treated wood on craigslist and lined it against that wire fence.
Let me tell you ... I got a massage after this. And I feel I deserved it!

Then, Eric ordered a ton of gravel that was delivered to our driveway and I wheelbarrowed it to the back. (Eric helped finish that up when he got home from work that day and Aaron helped me with his little shovel as I worked in the afternoon.) Then, Eric took a compactor to the back yard to get it all in place and I built steps down to the lower level of the yard.

 After all that, Eric rented a U-haul and drove down to Scio, Oregon to pick up some used football turf. We found out after he got there that they would have delivered it... oh well. It sat in our front yard for a while and the kids had fun jumping on/off of it. 

Then it came time to move it to the back. Again, not sure what we would have done without my brother... Thomas rallied the troops in the ward and Eric's friend, Tyler also showed up to help! First, we cut the grass to the dimensions we needed in the back. Then we rolled it up and they tried lifting it. However, it was full of rubber and close to 2500lbs. So, we needed a new plan since they couldn't get it off the ground. We ended up turning the grass over, banging out all the rubber, carrying it to the back, and then raking the rubber all back in.
 We then got a crazy good deal on a shed that once again, my brother and his companion helped us build.
 Now our yard looks like this:
 There are no weeds - there is no mowing - there is no raking (though I do have to vacuum it every once in a while). When we let the kids play in the sprinkler, it never puddles. We can leave toys out and the grass under them doesn't die. They can play outside year round. They don't need shoes since there is no dead grass to poke their feet. Down by the shed I now have a garden which I love!
 Is your mind blown yet? 
The ultimate DIY project and it turned on better than we could have possibly imagined!
One day, I'll show you my craftroom (as I still have yet to post pictures of it here) but I think I've scrambled your brain enough for one day.
We love our home. It's perfect for our family!