Tuesday, December 31, 2013


As 2013 comes to a close, and as my 2014 resolution to blog more begins, I thought I'd whip together a "what you missed" post to wrap up our year in about thirty or so photos.  Kind of like how TV shows give you five minutes of last season's highlights before jumping into a new season each fall.  "...and that's what you missed on Glee."

Who watches that show, anyway?!   Not me.  Ever.  I'm (ahem) 28, ya know.  

So back to 2013.  Let's just jump right in, shall we?  

(I had intended for this to go chronologically, but apparently blogger has other ideas)

I announced my pregnancy to my family via this photo. Apparently I felt more pregnant than I looked.  Nobody got it.
We spent many warm weekends at the condo in St. George
Rob and I celebrated our 10th anniversary.  He surprised me with a trip to Vegas and California.  
Seth was born - and we took this Benjamin Button of a baby picture.  Whose old man baby is that anyway?!  
Rob wrestled with his children on a nightly basis.  Usually just in time to rile them up before bed. 

We learned that Claire was destined for stardom:

We sobbed as we left our first little home. 

Rob turned 33, and I botched his cake

We celebrated halloween with a skeleton, a witch, Merida and Ariel
Madelyn was baptized
We took this photo.  
We blessed our little Sethy Boy
We said a swift goodbye to Rob's parents
We carved awesome pumpkins
Ella Bell turned five.  Jude made her a bow - which she proudly wore to school.
Claire Bear turned 17 2

Rob reached a big milestone with his business
Juders turned 6

We painted Easter eggs (with monkeys?)
Jude killed at LEAST sixteen acres of rainforest with all of his creating
The hole in the mouth happened.  
Bowser ate four of Yoshi's five limbs, and we finally had to get rid of them (yes...somebody actually bought 1/3 of a lizard)
Miss Maddie turned 8
We blew the neighborhood away with our amazing fireworks display.  (ARE THOSE SNAKES COMING OUT OF THE GROUND?!) 

We sent three incredibly tired looking kids to school (Ella - preschool, Jude - 1st Grade, Maddie 3rd Grade)
I turned 28(ish) and cried while trying to blow out my candles.  Thanks, hormones. 
Rob read to Maddie's class, and we learned about beef jerky.
My brother and his wife came to visit us from Chicago
We utilized our zoo membership (and actually saw real animals as well as lego animals)
Ella grew her hair out

Then chopped it

....we spent two weeks in Chicago with my family and forgot our camera.

All in all, I'd say 2013 was a pretty darn good year.  It had its ups and downs, but we've definitely been blessed.  We are happy, healthy alive, and ready to embark on all of the joys that 2014 will bring to our family.  

Wishing you all a wonderful 2014...

Monday, December 30, 2013

Maddie's Baptism

The end of last summer was a busy time for us, as I mentioned in my last post.  The entire summer our family was looking forward to Madelyn's baptism.  We knew it would be the first Saturday in August, since she had turned 8 in July...which also fell in the same week I was supposed to be induced.   It was a really big and exciting day for Maddie, so naturally I was a bit worried that little boy Seth would decide to come JUST in time for me to have miss it, or come at a time that would force us to reschedule.  

Thankfully, the boy held out and we were able to enjoy a beautiful day with our amazing little girl.  Maddie was so sweet, and thrilled to baptized by her dad.  Having so many friends and family around to support her only made the day that much more special.  Rob and I are so proud of her desire to be like Christ, and couldn't adore this sweet child more.  
We love you, Madelyn!  

The bottom is the last family picture we took before Seth joined us.  I went into labor the very next day.  Thanks, Seth, for not stealing Maddie's thunder.  Your timely arrival saved Maddie years of resentment, and saved me thousands of dollars on therapy for Madelyn later in life!  

Thursday, December 19, 2013


Yeah, it's been a while.  I'm just going to make this a blog of excuses so people understand what I've been dealing with.

In August, Maddie was baptized, I had a new baby, school started, and we began packing.  In September we moved - while taking care of the crankiest baby on the planet.  Yes - Seth was a bit of a beast. We moved into my in-law's basement while they were still upstairs for one month. (They are serving a two year mission and needed someone to house-sit, so we turned our home into a rental and moved in.)  Then they left and we moved (what seemed like) a second time - upstairs.  Two weeks later we took a two week trip to Chicago, and just got back to find two kids with RSV.  Yeah.  Did I mention I'm still driving the kids back and forth to their old school?  Not a super long drive, but an extra half hour every morning and afternoon.

Yes, yes....I could complain all day, but I'll keep it brief.  On top of everything, and maybe even the biggest contributor to my lack of blogging has been trying to raise the funniest, most dramatic, and most demanding redhead that this world has ever seen.  When I asked her to say cheese for the camera, she struck this pose:

100% Claire.

The kid kills me.  Then makes me laugh.  Then makes me run into my room and lock the door.  Then kills me again. Then stops me in the middle of a sentence to say, "Love you, Mom." Last week I overheard her starting a riot in nursery.  Think fist-pumping-chanting of "RED! RED! RED! RED!" getting other kids to join in so she could get her way. I apologized over and over to the nursery leaders for my outspoken daughter when I picked her up and they said, "Oh, she's hilarious.  VERY ARTICULATE."

Very articulate indeed.

 Heaven help me.  If this kid ever stops napping I don't know what will become of my life.  Either way, if this kid gives me a break every once in a while I'd like to be back on board with this blogging thing.  It used to make me pretty happy.  Guess we will see what lies ahead for our little Merida.