Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Hello Spring!

I wasn't sure if I should name this post "Hello Spring" or "Goodbye Winter Blues", but either way, I've suddenly noticed that I've just felt more alive in recent weeks.

I'm not sure if it's the fact that our days are longer (I think I may be solar powered), that our days are warmer, all of the plants and flowers coming back to life, or if it's the fact that we have so much to look forward to in the coming weeks and months. There's really nothing to get me down right now.





Before I get into any of our exciting upcoming and recent events, I have to wish my son Ethan James a very Happy Birthday! Ethan, you have brought me SO much joy in the last year and I never knew how much fun it would be to have a son. I'm so looking forward to watching and helping you grow up! Your smile makes me melt.



I'm going to do an "Ethan at 1 year" post, but I'm waiting until after his 1 year check up.

We spent this past weekend very much enjoying the nice weather that has hit our great state! Saturday night we had a small(ish) birthday party for Ethan. We invited our family and just a few friends. We had 11 children in our home all ages 7 and under. It was a bit crazy, but mostly fun.





The weather was perfect to enjoy eating dinner outside on our patio and for letting the kids play.





I never knew Ethan could be such a ham! He was happy to entertain everyone with his big smile and his "talents" like clapping. He knew exactly when to smile and he had everyone laughing with him.




He was a champ when it came to his first piece of cake. He was not shy and dug right in. He was a mess before we knew it.



Even Ellie got in on making Ethan as messy as possible. ;-)




Despite the chaos, it was a great party. I can't believe I now have a 3 year old AND a 1 year old. Crazy!

One of Ethan's birthday gifts was a helmet so we could enjoy family bike rides. Since the weather was SO beautiful this past weekend, we were eager to test it out. So, Sunday afternoon we loaded up the kids, complete with bike helmets (it took Ethan some time to get used to it), and rode our bikes to the park. It was so much fun!





In the coming weeks we're looking forward to celebrating my father-in-law's 60th birthday, dying Easter eggs, Easter service (definitely my favorite day to be in church) and celebrating Easter with family. Our families make a big deal of Easter (complete with an egg hunt and hints to find Easter baskets) so it's tons of fun.





This year Easter will be extra special because my cousin Daniel and his fiance Olivia are going to be asking Ellie and her cousins to be flower girls/ring bearer in their wedding. My sister Jenn wrote more about our relationship to Daniel and Olivia. Our cousins have always been more like siblings than cousins to us. I'm so touched that they are asking the kids to be a part of their special day.



In the coming months we have a lot to look forward to also. Later in April I'm going to see Wicked with my sister Courtney. It was my Christmas gift from her and I can't wait! I've never seen Wicked before but I've heard so much about it. I LOVE plays and musicals.



Then in May we have Caleb's 30th birthday, and then we're off to San Diego for a family vacation with Caleb's side of the family. We've been talking about this trip for so long. I'm most looking forward to Sea World, Legoland, Family time at the beach, relaxing and eating yummy food. Can't wait. Every day Ellie asks "How much longer until we leave for San Diego?"







With all of this fun coming up, I am officially over the funk that I was in. No more feeling blah and blue here. :)

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Spring Break and Family Fun

Caleb had his spring break last week. We decided ahead of time that staying home for an entire week was not an option. We knew we'd get too bored and we'd all go a little stir crazy. At the same time, we didn't have a TON of money to go on a big vacation (our big vacation this year is going to be our San Diego trip in June).

So, about a month before spring break, Caleb and I started talking about doing a mini-vacation within our great State of Colorado. We threw out several options; Colorado Springs, Glenwood Springs, Estes Park, and Denver. When we discussed the things we would want to do with our little ones, Denver ended up being the best option.

Last week ended up being one of the best weeks we've had to date as a family! We had the perfect blend of routine down time at home, spending time with friends, having time with our own little family and extended family, and filling a few days with fun activities. Goes to show you that you don't have to spend a ton of money to go out and make memories.

Spring Break started off with a birthday surprise for Caleb. Caleb and his best friend Joe both turn the big 30 this year so Kim (Joe's wife) and I wanted to plan a fun weekend for the two of them.



Kim and I arranged for the kids to be with their grandparents (we're so thankful to have such loving and willing parents nearby) and to spend the weekend in Denver doing fun "guy" stuff.



The four of us went out to dinner, went to an Avalanche game, went putt putt golfing (this was plan C when paintball fell through), played some card and board games and relaxed at the Warwick hotel. Honestly, I think we just enjoyed having time together and acting like we were young again. We stayed up late and got to sleep in. It was wonderful!





When we returned home on Sunday we decided that we weren't ready to part ways so Joe, Kim and their two boys spent the night in our small home. We had 4 kids ages 3 and under in our house for 24 hours. It was crazy, but also so much fun. The next day we took the kids swimming, went out to lunch and then parted ways.


Love this family!

I spent most of Monday and Tuesday morning unpacking, doing laundry and repacking for our next little adventure.

Tuesday afternoon we told Ellie that we had some surprises planned for her and we took off with both kids to another hotel in Denver.

Ethan especially enjoyed the mirror and the heater/air conditioner in the room. :)





Tuesday night we went to The Spaghetti Factory. There was a balloon artist there that made a purple cat for Ellie (at her request).





Wednesday morning we woke up, had breakfast and spent the whole morning at the zoo.






Even Ethan enjoyed himself.





Elliana got to try cotton candy for the first time.



After the zoo we went back to the hotel for lunch and naps.

Wednesday afternoon we met up with my sisters Jenn and Alli, my brother in law Brian, and all of Jenn's littles at Park Meadows Mall. We didn't tell Ellie that she was going to see her cousins. It was so fun to watch all of the cousins run to each other when they saw each other. We just strolled around the very large mall and let the kids stop and play when they needed to.





Then we all had dinner together in the food court and parted ways after dinner.

Thursday morning we packed up all of our stuff and went to the children's museum. I had no idea how much fun that would be! Both kids really seemed to enjoy themselves. There was so much to do for both ages.













After spending several hours at the children's museum, we had one last meal out and then went home.

We finished off our spring break at home enjoying some down time as a family. Saturday I took the kids to a St. Patrick's Day parade with Jenn and her kids.

It was a wonderful week and we made lots of great memories. I don't know if it was the PERFECT weather (60s and 70s), or the fact that the whole family enjoyed last week so much, but now I'm really excited for the rest of spring and summer. Life is good!

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Ethan at 11 Months

I can't believe I even typed "Ethan at 11 Months". Where has the time gone?

I'm late in posting this which means I'll be typing Ethan's 1 year post in just a few short weeks. I don't know what happened to this past year. It flew by so quickly and I am not ready for my little man to turn one.

Ethan, this is what you are like at 11 months old:
~I bet you weigh around 17.5 pounds and that you are around 28(ish) inches long.

~You are on your last package of size 2 diapers, soon you will be wearing size 3.

~You only wear size 9 months in clothing now, and I can tell you will need size 12 months soon.

~You continue to do really well with solid foods and you are beginning to want more and more table food. This month you began wanting to feed yourself more. You began taking the spoon from me and crying when I try to feed you. Now I cut up most of your food and let you feed yourself with finger foods. Your favorites are cheddar and swiss cheese, bananas, crackers, cheerios, and any type of soft bread.

~You still take a bottle first thing in the morning, right before bed, and between meals. About 4-5 bottles a day. After this month we will wean you off of formula.

~You have really become a great sleeper for the most part. Most nights you sleep in your crib 10-12 hours! Sometimes you'll still wake up once for a bottle in the middle of the night, but that is happening less often too.

~You still take one long nap. You typically nap 2.5-3 hours. You like your sleep! When you are a tired baby, it really changes your mood.

~We're STILL waiting to see your first teeth. Thankfully, your drooling has slowed some, but you continue to bite down and chew on anything you can. Mommy is trying not to worry about this. Those teeth have to come sometime soon, right? ;-)

~You have become quite the happy baby. You love to smile, laugh and giggle. Every once in a while I'll see your old serious, pensive face, but you are not nearly as serious as you once were. In fact, sometimes you even make us laugh with your funny faces. I think you enjoy making us laugh.



~You have become quite social. People often stop me in the stores now to comment on how happy and cute you are. You love to shop with me and smile at others.

~You are so curious about your world now. You love to reach, grab and play with anything. You are happy to roam on the floor and play.





~You are crawling very well now and you get around quickly! This month you began cruising (walking while holding onto furniture and other objects). You love to walk around the coffee table in the living room. You LOVE being mobile so much that you never stop moving unless you are ready to sleep. I guess you want to keep up with your sister. :)



~Speaking of your sister, you two are developing a great relationship. She continues to make you laugh in a way that nobody else can. You're always watching her with a big smile on your face. The two of you are always making each other smile and laugh.



~Your love for baths continues to grow, it's the only thing that can make you go from completely angry and grumpy, to happy and giggling. You love to splash and play with the bath toys.

~Most days you are too busy to sit and cuddle, but you're still much more cuddly than Ellie was. I love when you do allow me to cuddle with you. You have started giving hugs now and they are the BEST hugs!



~Nicknames: Mister, Little Man, Sweet Boy, Handsome, Little Buddy and sometimes EJ. We all call you little buddy most often. Even your sister has started refering to you as "buddy".

We love you Ethan and we are so proud to call you "ours". :) I am sad that you are growing up so quickly, yet I am excited to see who you will become. I know that God has plans for you.



About Me

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I am a daughter of the King. Saved by grace. Follower of Christ. I love my God and I believe that he is faithful and true to his word! I'm still figuring out and trying to follow his plan for my life. I am a wife to my best friend Caleb, a mother to my miracle babies (they are my greatest joy and challenge), a sister and best friend to 3 passionate women, and a daughter to 2 amazing parents that continue to teach me what it is to be real and faithful to God and his word. I am lucky to get to be a stay at home Mom (thanks to God's provision). I love music, singing, coffee, cooking, baking, traveling, our beautiful state of Colorado, and mostly being with the family and friends that I love!

Husband, Caleb

Husband, Caleb
Caleb is an amazing husband and father. He is always so good to me. He is my best friend. He is the romantic one. We love to laugh and spend time together. We've been married for 7 years and I just love that I get to spend the rest of my life with him.

Our 1st Miracle

Our 1st Miracle
Elliana Faith... God blessed us with our first miracle little girl in December 2008. She is sweet, smart, spunky, funny, strong willed, precocious, extremely outgoing, vocal and so full of life! She brings us so much joy.

Our 2nd Miracle

Our 2nd Miracle
Ethan James,.. God blessed us with our little boy in March 2011. Ethan was a bit of a surprise and an even bigger miraclle. Ethan is ALL BOY! He is very active, into sports and running around. He is also sweet, introverted, affectionate, and laid back. These days he often has us laughing, he's starting to show a little bit of "clown" in him. He makes our hearts happy too. :)

Our 3rd Miracle

Our 3rd Miracle
Emsley Jeannette... Our surprise baby girl was born on June 11th, 2013 and came into the world 4 weeks early. Her first 2 weeks of life were spent in the NICU, but due to God's hands and the prayers of many people, she grew quickly and came home to join our family! She is an easy, sweet baby and we are enjoying getting to know her personality.

Sisters

Sisters
We fight one day and then the next day we're fine. We're always loud and crazy when we get together. We're very passionate. We've been through it all together, lots of ups and downs. We're eachother's biggest supporters.

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