Monday, December 26, 2011

at home for christmas

...for the first time in our marriage! The first time in 7 1/2 years! It was very exciting for us. I was worried Adam would want to go to St. George at the last minute but he started planning a great day for the kids and agreed that traveling for Christmas wouldn't happen this year!
Lily and Jackson were so darn excited to see Santa at the ward Christmas party. Lily asked for makeup and Jackson asked for gum. Santa delivered.
(with Jensyn and Hurley Parker)
This year we got the kids involved in giving presents to each other. It was so darn cute. After they wrapped the gifts and put them under the tree they were so excited! Jackson got home from school and I pointed out his gift from Lily, and he immediately looked at Lily and said "gun?" Which lucky for him Lily got him a ton of bullets so close enough. I was absolutely amazed that they lasted until Christmas morning without getting peeked at. Early one morning I heard some rustling and Adam ran out to see Lily "just holding" her present from Jack (which was a fairy doll). They were so excited for Santa, and we sang Christmas songs every night before bed.
This year Adam got a second wife (isn't that what people call their husbands' obsessions?). An x-box. Seeing as how he has wanted one forever and is always disappointed, I thought with him finishing the requirements for his CPA, the fact he's turning 30!, his promotion, and don't tell him but he spoiled me like crazy this year, I figured why not? A few days after Christmas we were walking in Costco and I saw a pea coat. "Oh right. That's what I wanted this year." To which he replied, "Oh yeah? Well I wanted...." Haha!! That moment right there was worth the $400.
Santa came with lots of balloons (and an allergic reaction that basically made me rethink my entire existence), a beautiful set out breakfast table (crepes, egg sandwiches, orange julius), and lots of treats and toys. We spent the week after Christmas in St. George. So nice! Bike rides, time with both families, dinner out with no kids and no babysitting fees ("Oppa!" for flaming cheese), our first movie since Isaac (MI4), and a day trip to Zions with Mom and Dad. Lily was not impressed and wasn't feeling too well during the "LONG" (1/4 mile) hike, and declared that she wanted to come back there "zero times!!!!" Coming home was a bit more difficult than usual.

Monday, December 12, 2011

fairy garden

Lily turned 5! We planned a fairy garden birthday party. Lily seemed super excited and I found some good stuff online to make it pretty cool (in my opinion). Wings and wands for all the little girls, fairy cupcakes with fairy dusted pink and purple frosting; and fairy games - 'flower flower who's got the flower' and 'duck duck goose' (Lily is informing me that it was 'duck duck goose'. I was thinking it was 'fairy fairy princess' or something).
Here is the gorgeous girl. She is such a big helper; so nice to her brothers; loves to make people laugh; likes to play games; and she says she likes to have cupcakes and have a lot of fun. She has always been such a joy to have as a daughter. With two boys now I am reminded a lot of how lucky I am to have this sweet girl to keep me company.She says she likes to play with her brothers, and she loves her brothers. She really is an amazing big sister! Sometimes she is reluctant to share and not tease Jackson, but she usually is so willing to play nice. Isaac loves her so much and she can get him to laugh and smile so big! Sometimes it is easier to have her at home than at preschool. We are so lucky to have her in our family.
We love our little Lily!

Monday, November 28, 2011

positives and negatives

I have to admit I was very nervous about Thanksgiving this year. Last year was a nightmare; when asked why from my aunt Denise, I replied that the fight with Adam was so bad that Isaac would be a few months older if it hadn't happened. Whether it is fighting over whose house to be at, or the stress of driving home in a snowstorm that extended the drive 3 hours, it just hasn't been my favorite holiday weekend.
Anyhow here are the positives and negatives of Thanksgiving holiday this year:
-Adam passed his last CPA exam!!! He is done!!!! I think this fact alone kept us in high spirits.
-Jackson suffered his 1,638th almost-concussion right before we left Ogden. Smacked his head on the concrete floor of Cafe Rio. Adam had me try and wake him up every 45 minutes of the beginning of our trip to make sure he was okay; cue me yelling his name, slapping him, pinching him, etc etc with no response for 3 minutes until finally he would barely open one eye. Stressful!
-Engine failure in the Subaru. Right around midnight - super stressful! Jack was still out like he was in a coma, it was freezing outside and I was so worried all 3 kids would wake up cold and crying.
-We were near Fillmore and Alicia's mechanic father, who the tow-truck guy knew so gave us a 'discount' (Adam suspects he says that to everyone).
-I am apparently terrified of tow-trucks? I cannot believe how scared I was to get up there and ride the 20 miles to Fillmore. I kept on imagining the car just sliding off the truck and all of us diving into the ravine.
-We got Jack to wake up completely, telling (shouting to) him that we were on a tow truck. Definitely no concussion! He was wide awake until we got in bed at 2 a.m.
-I realized the extreme pain I had experienced throughout the day was mastitis, and the flu symptoms were manifesting themselves right while we were trying to get settled into the hotel room.
-Jon and Natalie Zempter were willing to pick up the van from Ogden and bring it to us so we could finish our trip to St. George. Lifesavers!!!!!!!! Also the kids were great during the wait; thankfully we had my bike and Adam gave them rides on the handlebars.
-The Subaru is finished. Maybe I would be a bit more sad if it hadn't broken down in the middle of a cold night in between Beaver and Fillmore. Adam is talking about getting a Tribeca but I feel betrayed.
-Mom and Dad are letting us use the van until we can get something else. Talk about being generous! We would be in deep trouble without it.
So anyways, all of the crappy stuff got out of the way before we even got to St. George, and it ended up being a wonderful trip. Mom and Dad of course took us out to eat to celebrate Adam passing the Audit section, which was fun. We had Thanksgiving dinner with the Bentley's at the ward - YUM! And this year we stayed for the entire talent show, including Lily and Jackson's somersaults. Yes, pretty sad as I didn't really prepare them, but knew they wanted some candy so I suggested that. Wonderful memories come from Bentley Thanksgivings. I got in a ton of time shopping with my mom, the world's best person to go shopping with as things you are looking for magically appear right in front of you and they're on sale! I got to go running outside, and Adam and I went on my first official bike ride on my new bike! Postpartum exercise is very exciting. We only went 7 miles but it was wonderful. Plus some family time, just us, to the crack and the St. George Temple to see Christmas lights.
The kids spent most of their time over at Mimi and Papa's new house that has a swimming pool. Lily's tiny fingertips all have blisters on them from being prunes that were rubbed on the side of the pool all day long. They also have a little tramp and playset, and Jackson was just in heaven.
We also had the chance to bless Isaac while we were there, which was nice; I didn't have to worry about an open house as the Bird's took care of everything, and Adam was able to have all of his brothers and dad with him. We also got Isaac together with Crew, Ezra and Jet, his other cousins born this fall. So fun!

So all in all, things turned out great. We were so blessed in a situation that could have had a much worse outcome. Happy Thanksgiving!


Also in Logan we went through a cornmaze. The kids were beyond excited for the first 10 minutes. After that, it was suddenly the most awful and cruel thing we could ever do to them to get them to follow us without whining, crying, and asking to be held. I love how Lily, even though we were done with the maze, is hiding from the camera she was so mad! So much passion in such little people.

Friday, November 11, 2011

worth remembering

Watching Daddy pitch for the JD Clark softball team

There are quite a few things that happened after Isaac and during October:

~ Big shout out to Adam for again being an absolutely AMAZING birthing partner! I kept on thinking afterward "I can't believe we did it again!" He's such a huge part of me being able to get through those labors. And I have to admit that I am a nerd and LOVE thinking that he is proud of me.
The dentist! They did awesome and were so adorably nervous.
~ My neighbor Laura who had the kids before Amanda picked them up called me at the hospital. She commented on when she answered the door Amanda was like a ray of sunshine coming into the house. I agree. Trying to describe how grateful I am for her would be a complete waste of time. She made that first week of postpartum a breeze. I cried the night she left and now that I am thinking about it.
Jack's FIRST time off the bus. Mimi was there to greet him too. It is the neatest thing to see him so excited about school (albeit a few weeks of forcing him to go was necessary, not anymore and he always is happy and will say "ride bus" when he gets off. So cute.)

~ Each day that passes makes me think that two kids was definitely my challenge so far. With both Lily and Jack in school 4 days a week (overlapping 3 of those = 2 hrs Mom can do whatever the heck she wants when Isaac is sleeping) I definitely lucked out on the timing. Some effects Isaac had on the kids:
Lily: SO excited. She actually still waves down strangers asking if they want to see her baby brother. When he cries she will rush over to him to calm him down. Always kisses and hugs. It's awesome as I can take showers while she talks to him in the bouncer and keeps him happy. An amazing big sister.
Jackson: From observing Lily, pretty excited as well. Whenever Isaac cried the first few weeks Jack would quickly look up at me and say "cry!" and run over to him to calm him down (not so much anymore). He loves helping with diapers, will get them and wipes for me, help me undo buttons, then exclaim "big poop!", and will throw diapers away. Downside is tantrums are a bit more frequent, I suspect from checking to see if we still will pay attention to just him. Not too difficult to handle.
Jackson was so excited about this wagon at the fruit stand on Highway 89. Yeah for cheap fresh peaches! Definitely a last minute pregnancy craving.
After 4 years, I am finally done working at Alpine. They have been telling me they want me to stop for the past three years, then asked me to come back to train more times than I can count. Perfect timing, and what a perfect place to work while staying home. Never more than 5 hrs a week and most of the time less than that; super nice administration; I went whenever I wanted; and when I have babies I can bring them until they're old enough to be babysat without a bottle. The extra income has been a blessing, not to mention the little break I got each week. Apparently I will return in January for a few weeks when Jennie has her baby, but besides emergencies I'm pretty sure this last week was the last. Bittersweet.
~ I missed the end of summer while in the hospital, and I still feel cheated. The autumn leaves were amazing this year. We were able to take our traditional trip to Logan this year to drive through the canyon, get some Aggie ice cream, show the kids some landmarks of my alma mater, and get some yummy food. Although this photo is at Pineview Reservoir. Check out those colors (and beautiful kids)! Totally doesn't translate through a camera - it really was incredible.
~ I may be biased but dang! Those have to be two of the cutest outfits out there. It was very difficult to keep Lily out of her ladybug costume every day - she thought she was beyond beautiful and would go up to anyone saying "do you see a cute ladybug anywhere?" Adam said the crayon costume was the only one Jackson would even consider. Halloween was the normal nightmare with candy for meals for about 3 days straight, but I got to go house to house with the kids the year (first time), and it was hard to make them go home they were so cute and excited.
~ Another dinner to see my Dad recognized for being a great person. He has represented a bunch of teachers in Washington County, so the UEA put him on their 'honor roll'. I drove down to Salt Lake with the kids, dropped them off at Aunt Carol's so they could be in heaven at her super kid friendly house, and had such a great time with Dad and sleeping Isaac. It's always so fun to spend time one-on-one with Dad, and I'm so glad he invited me to come. ~ Isaac went to bed and this picture makes me want to go and wake him up. This morning he smiled at me for the first time; I was pretty excited. He is a wonderful baby and I am such a lucky mom. Plus! These babies bring such blessings. Adam got promoted at work - pretty huge as the last time they promoted someone to this level was three years ago, AND they didn't even go through the interviewing process. They just picked him. Nice to see his hard work appreciated, he really deserved it.

Friday, October 7, 2011

'he laugheth'

Tuesday was a good day. I had lunch and subsequent long play date for the kids with a good friend, a quiet afternoon followed by dinner - one of Adam's favorites; not pasta; and made by me (those average about once a month). The house was clean, dishes done, laundry caught up; Lily was rewarded with $1 for finishing a homework packet and so I took the kids to the ice cream and candy shop so they could pick a treat out.
We then headed to the church where I put in September's Visiting Teaching report, went on a little drive with Adam, then while he and Lily worked on her next homework packet, Jackson and I tidied up the outside of the house to prepare for fall (not so many toys and gardening tools everywhere). Went through the bedtime routine, which I ended with "See you guys in the morning," whereupon I had the thought that maybe I shouldn't have said that.
After we got in bed I noticed some contractions, and thought I should time them. After 30 minutes of being 5-6 minutes apart, I woke up Adam, he gave me a beautiful blessing, we called Betty, then off to the hospital. We were admitted around 11:45 pm, and then after they set up the antibiotics on the IV for strep b, left us alone for Adam to lay on the couch and me the bed until my water broke at 1:45 am. It was very quiet and dark and peaceful; I was so grateful for that.
My midwife was called down, they set up the room, I realized I wasn't getting the 5 minute breaks between contractions like before, and I asked, I believe, "what the effectiveness of drugs through the IV would do to help take the edge off" which was followed quickly by a "too late! you're past a 7 and the baby is almost here." Then after working very hard to relax through the contractions and let them do their thing, pushed through 4 or 5 (no tearing! yeah! and I only swore once this time and it was in German) and our little "Baby Bird" was born at 2:31 am on October 5, 2011. He struggled for a bit but was soon with us to meet. He weighed in at 8 lbs 15 oz and 19 1/2 inches. Adam was able to get a few hours of sleep before going home to get the kids and bring them back to meet their new brother. They were so cute and excited. Then they left for a fieldtrip with Lily's school to the fire station, and Adam went off the work while the kids went to Laura's until Amanda came to pick them up. Mom and Dad drove up to see the baby and help out Amanda, who apparently didn't need any help with 3 toddlers and a 15 month old, and so they left the next morning - soon to return, hopefully.
We got home the next night and was welcomed by a yummy dinner and this beautiful cake that Amanda made with the kids. Who does that??? She is amazing.
Today Amanda informed me that my kids were a lot calmer when I wasn't around. This is their first night with Mom being gone all day - doesn't look like they were too upset.I feel so incredibly spoiled to have so much support right now. I am just loving having this little guy around, he is so much fun to hold and wonder at. And, after much deliberation and some help from Lily and Jack, we finally filled out the birth certificate papers. So welcome to the world, Isaac Thomas. We are so happy to have you here.

Saturday, September 24, 2011


38 wks and 2 days. from lily's point of view.
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Thursday, September 22, 2011

so much

Jackson turned 3! I can't believe what a difference this birthday has made. We found some underwear small enough for him and he was potty trained by the end of the week. He started talking practically overnight - as in he will repeat words we say or say words he knows without prompting, instead of using one word for 14 different things or just getting really frustrated. We have been waiting and working for that throughout the past year! Next step is connecting words to make sentences. But seriously I can't believe how relieved I am that his little brain turned the switch. We had his birthday celebration at the splash pad, where the kids enjoyed the water and playgrounds and I enjoyed not having to come up with games and just sitting with the other moms. And with Britt's help I made his cake, with just a few bouts of hyperventilating to keep the oreo crumbs in line for the road. He was very excited about the "Cars" theme. He certainly is such a joy to have in our family!
And here is miss Lily on her first day of preschool. She loves the one we are trying out this year, I am so grateful for neighbors who helped me decide on where to send her! She has been so excited and I absolutely love the teachers and set up and everything. Although this week I am almost expecting DCFS to make a visit - last week Lily hit her cheekbone quite hard while playing downstairs, and the bruise is to the point where it is huge and colorful. Add that to barely giving me a kiss she's so excited to go to class, and complaining to her teachers she doesn't want to leave yet when I come to pick her up.....
And here she is again with her backpack outside of her school. She is at that fun age of wearing the same outfit again and again and again. She hides it behind a chair in her room - I assume so that I can't wash it. And the shock of the year for me! Since Jackson started talking so much more, the speech therapist recommended Early Intervention Preschool. I had resisted, but with MUCH persuasion from Mom, decided to try it out - for Tuesday and Thursday instead of Mon, Tues, Thurs, Fri. Also I said I would drive him instead of have a bus come pick him up. Look at how tiny he is - can you blame me? We were pretty apprehensive of how he would handle the situation as he still screams his head off when we mention nursery at church (although last week we sent him to Primary with Lily and he was very happy - now we are anxious for him to start Sunbeams in a few months), but he was such a trooper. I of course almost cried when his teacher took his hand to lead him inside. Lily and I stayed for about 20 minutes to observe and when we left he watched us leave and was apparently very good! Today when I went to pick him up he was quite upset he couldn't get on the school bus, so we'll be starting that next week to see how it goes. He seems to absolutely love it, and gets excited when we talked about school. It is only 2 hours a day and to me it's like he knows he's such a big boy. I have to admit it seems almost too good to be true to have a bus pick him up and drop him off, and Lily is at a preschool down the street. Hopefully that will help with the stress of having a newborn, but I guess you never know how things will really turn out. Until the baby is born (I am at 38 weeks today - sorry Amanda and Liz no picture yet) I will have 2 days a week with an hour and a half with no kids. This morning I was quite productive, which was awesome, but such a strange feeling having them at school instead of a babysitter or something.

As for Adam, he still has the Audit section to pass for the CPA. We found out last week he got a 74 when he needed a 75. So depressing! It has been a year since he started the process so is very ready to be done. He is amazing, that is all I can say.

Sunday, August 21, 2011

things to remember

Last week we helped with the South Ogden Stake cleanup project which was scheduled for 3 hours but the kids and I lasted one. We mainly weeded the entire time, and at one point Adam asked Lily to go past some bushes to get some weeds, could she do that? Lily answered "Not very often." Later she commandeered the broom and swept for a good 20 minutes before we bribed her with playing on the playground so we could finish up. Jackson held on tight to a little shovel and followed Adam around to help shovel weeds into the garbage. How can these kids have gotten so big?
Our usual wake up call is Jackson climbing in bed at about 7:30 am to cuddle and/or tease Dad so he'll get tickled, so it was pretty fun to see them like this - I never had before, and wonder how often it happens.
In order to escape my house whose messiness is really, really bothering me for some reason, we have gone to Salt Lake a few times. Really, I don't know why I have been getting so annoyed - once I clean it will stay good for a few days, but then it will be super messy and I get in a really bad mood. It's a cycle that is of course familiar to me as a mom of toddlers so I don't know why it seems so much more of a pain. Adam noticed the insanely thick dust on our ceiling fans, and asked if this was my nesting phase. Hopefully it is just hormones - so easy to blame it on that!
Here we are watching the Tour of Utah bike race - this day it was a 15 circuit course that Adam was determined to wait for the last round before we could leave. The kids loved it and it was pretty exciting - especially over by the University where the bikers would zoom down the hill around a sharp turn and were followed by the cars whose tires were screeching to keep up.
Jackson has found that licking, unlike biting, will annoy someone but not get him in time out. Here Lily thinks it's pretty funny though.
One Sunday I particularly wanted to get away so I took the kids up to the duck pond to go look around. We walked slowly and stopped to look at everything they found interesting - it was so nice to go at their pace instead of rushing rushing rushing which is usually the case. Sometimes the observations were ducks, sometimes butterflies, sometimes to smell the flowers or watch the little stream go under the bridge. A beautiful afternoon, unfortunately cut short by the demands of the potty. ;)
It rained this year at the Rodeo, perfect weather so we didn't sweat like crazy. I kept on sending Adam to get treats with the kids, hoping he would return with Indian fry bread with honey butter, but no such luck. Snow cones and candy - boring sugar. Easy to say no to though, so probably I'm better off.
Adam didn't want the garbage cans, but I took the picture anyways. His company is a big sponsor of the rodeo.

The last time I asked Adam to take a picture of my belly it ended up just being my chest up so I dropped that idea. But apparently I am pretty big as I'm actually getting strangers commenting on the size - didn't happen with Lily or Jack. I feel like we're on the homestretch with only about 7 weeks left - I'm getting very excited, but the idea of having a newborn again seems so foreign! Lily is going to be a fantastic helper though, she can't wait to have a baby brother and is always reminding me how good she is at taking care of babies. She is quite jealous of her friend who just had a baby sister and is always asking why they got a girl and we are getting a boy, and why they got their baby before we did. The other day Jackson jumped straight on my belly while I was laying down, so who knows what his thoughts are.

We attended a baptism yesterday for two teenagers in our ward. We were able to have them meet with the missionaries in our home a few times, which was a neat experience. I helped put the program together, so nonchalantly put myself down to play the piano.....I sat down at about 10 minutes to 4 pm and was playing prelude music until 4:45 pm. Holy smokes! It was awesome going through so many hymns I haven't played in forever, but my back and my fingers were shot by the time I was done. And of course had little slip ups on every verse when it was actually time to accompany people singing. Why is it so different?

I turned 29 the other day - very pleasant day. I started out with a walk and some weeding (never happens so my cleaner yard made me very happy), got a call from Mom and Dad in France, had waffles for breakfast, got a springform pan from Jack, and a skirt from Lily (Adam told me later I should just let him clothes shop for me - I totally agree! I hate shopping but love his taste), had some kids over to entertain my kids for the morning, then Adam came home early so we could head to lunch, and then Salt Lake where we did a few errands, went to a matinee at the dollar theater (Kung Fu Panda 2), and went to the Spaghetti Factory where we requested to eat in the little trolley which Lily and Jack went nuts over and actually ate the food we ordered them. When we got home I felt like I had returned from vacation - it was such a great day! Amanda's birthday is today and I have to admit that when you are the youngest and are reminded so quickly that you're two years younger than your closest sister, it is hard to feel old. I actually can't believe I'm not 30 yet.

Monday, July 25, 2011

Cannon Beach

The almost-annual Cannon Beach trip! So wonderful as always. We missed Nathan, Alicia and Eve this year but had an entire week with Mom and Dad, along with Liz and Amanda and kids (instead of just passing by each other for a day or two like last year).
Adam was AMAZING! He drove the entire way while the kids and I slept most of the time. We started out at 4 am and got to our midpoint in Pendleton, Oregon by noon. Because the hotel pool was closed we went to the city water park - no pictures but it was so fun, even though they wouldn't let me down the slide because of being pregnant. :P The next day we stopped at a fish hatchery outside of Portland, so the kids could run around for a bit. Jackson was quite excited by the big fish and all of the waterfalls, and Lily was super ticked because her legs and feet were getting spots of dirt on them.
Mom and Dad rented a great house that fit us all perfectly. Beautiful views of the ocean, which was only a block away. All of the grandkids were in heaven! Luckily Liz brought a bunch of dump trucks/tractors and it took quite a lot to get Jack away from the sand.
Our requisite trip to Tillamook for some cheese and ice cream! Amanda was at home throwing up, which seems to also be required for family reunions (although thankfully this time it didn't spread).
Adam and I were able to take so many walks, it was wonderful! Before this trip I would lose my breath going up the stairs so it was great to finally have time to get exercise.
The first day was rainy and windy, but soon enough we had quite a few beautiful, warm days! Lily was determined to get her swimsuit on even when it was freezing though.

We celebrated Dad's birthday a week early. He had requested a ton of Louis Lamour books and got most of them. By the time he was done opening them the kids were pretty bored at his presents...
Daytrip to Seaside! Along with a carousel ride, Lily and Adam went on the bumper cars, and Jackson and Adam went on the Tilt-a-whirl. I was so worried he would get sick/scared half way through! He looks so tiny in line.
It was pretty funny though - he wanted to go again afterward, but Adam had gotten so sick he was complaining for the rest of the day. Liz got pretty sick as well, the other adult that went. She asked if Adam had pressured me to do it and I laughed and replied I can hardly be the passenger in a car I get so motion sick.
Lily was NOT HAPPY we made her come home with us instead of Liz, who required Lily to wear a jacket but she wouldn't. Adam calls this her "Sunset Face". Speaking of sunsets! I love the beach skies. Once again Mom and Dad made it possible for us to actually go on a non-St. George vacation; it doesn't happen often and we are so grateful for it.
Jack took this picture of Adam with his new phone. Yes, he finally has a data package. Before he would call me throughout the day to check his email but no more - I hardly hear from him now. He actually asked for a pair of earphones the other day so he could listen to "This American Life" at the grocery store. I told him if he continues with that kind of loser behavior I will take the phone away.