Thursday, December 17, 2015


Since we are already nearing the end of December (Christmas is in a mere week), I realized I needed to update again from our happenings of last month.  We stay pretty busy with three littles, even though it seems we spend the majority of our time at home.  As you can imagine there is usually a wake of chaos wherever we go...including church.  Roy and I have become increasingly more frustrated with our children's behavior during sacrament meeting, and sat down one night in an attempt to come up with a plan to help them out.  We finally decided we needed to practice reverence everyday at home, so they knew what was expected when we came to church.  We started out with five minutes and have worked our way up to 15.  It's still hit or miss most days, but then we have rays of hope too.  As you can see in this picture, E is clearly not having any of it.

Since my parents are in Nauvoo serving a mission, all the siblings pitch in once a month to do a big yard clean up and maintenance day.  November brought with it fall clean up in the largest way.  We raked and picked up wheelbarrow after wheelbarrow full.  To keep the young ones engaged we had the boys jumping on the piles of leaves as they were dumped in order to fit as many loads as we could.  These boys throughly enjoyed their task!

The week before Thanksgiving Miss M came down with her first stomach bug.  As you can imagine it was quite traumatic for a two year old.  But within a day she was on the mend and back to her usual cute (and dramatic) self!

Finn's preschool did a big thanksgiving feast and I was able to go and help.  It was a great time watching these kids play and learn.  Finn is energetic and fun loving, and he makes my heart happy!

Thanksgiving day we spent the morning being lazy.  The girls colored away, we watched the parade, and I cooked.  We spent the rest of the day with our small family group, there were only 14 of us.  This was a big change from years past when 40 is our usual number.  Even though we were few in numbers, it was still special to be there together!

 As we were getting ready to leave on Thanksgiving night, my phone was knocked off the table and crashed to it's death.  I was really depressed about the whole thing.  I'm not someone who particularly needs the latest tech.  All I need is a phone that works really, but my old phone was so old that it was barely functioning with the latest OS update.  So we decided to forgo fixing it and just buy a new one.  Ughhhh, not how I wanted to end the month, but that is just how life goes.

Since the holiday break the kids have gotten into a very bad habit of getting up 4 o'clock early.  Even for Roy who is a morning person this is unacceptable.  Here is Meg on one such morning telling daddy all the news.  
 Needless to say we are making changes and enforcing some new rules about what is an acceptable wake up time.  Because we all need more of this!

Wednesday, November 4, 2015

.getting away from me.

How is it already November?  October completely got away from me, so it should be an epic post seeing as we had a very busy month.

It has seriously been a magical month for the little dudes.  They got to see their first circus, when we scored on VIP tickets from a friend.  It was a late evening so we left E with my nieces, and rode the train down town.  They would have been totally satisfied with that...the circus was just the icing on the cake.
There was a lot of open mouthed stares the whole night.
 And we seriously had the best seats in the house.
 It was a mind blowing experience for these two (pay no attention to Finn's googly eyes in the picture).

Finn and I stayed up late one night and watched the blood moon rise.  We have some much fun with him now that he is older and understands somewhat the goings on around him.  And he is silly as all get out!

Of course we ventured out to a pumpkin patch to grab a cookie, some hot cider, and of course some gourds.  Since we had grown some warty ones in our garden, we only selected two for carving this year, but with Finn and Roy picking of course they were giant.
It didn't feel much like fall as it was nearly 80 degrees outside, but E didn't seem to mind.

We made it up to the mountains to see some of the fall leaves, and hiked one of my favorite hikes.  Hiking with three young kids takes a bit of work, but Finn managed pretty well, and miss M got a ride most of the way up and down on me so all in all not bad.
 I love this place and except for the ducks that we fed, we had it all to ourselves.

 trying to take a selfie with three littles...not really easy to do.
 This is the best way I know to get into fall.
E had her 18 month check up and finally made onto the charts in height and weight.  We are also excited to see what a daily dose of miralax will do for our babe with a slow track!
 She discovered the tomato patch in the garden and decided that the little red fruit was actually to her liking.  YAY, one of my kids will eat tomatoes!!!

I could be wrong, but I like to think that E makes this kissy lips because she has such big teeth.

 On another very warm Autumn day, we made a trip over to Gardener Village with our cousins to see the witches...along with the rest of the valley it seemed like.  Mostly, the kids liked the ducks, fish, and the carmel apple we split.

 October also welcomed our newest family member.  Little Maven (Mae) Sullivan is wonderful chubby addition, and Meg keeps asking when we can go see "baby Maben" again!

Of course our month ended with all the magic that Halloween can bring.  Finn was stoked about his Wall-E costume (which was an absolute labor of love), and was all smiles at his preschool parade.
 We carved our pumpkins a couple of nights before.  Finn really enjoyed using daddy's drill to his hearts content on his giant gourd.
 The night of Halloween we got together with family for a Halloween feast before we embarked on trick-or-treating.
We had poisened apple fondu, deviled eggs, bats wings, mummy dogs, mildew balls, eyeball grapes, and all sorts of other yummy goodies.

E was being a bit of a stinker that night so I didn't get a chance to get all the kids in their costumes, but here are the girls in all their glory.  Pumpkin fairy, and Belle (of course)
 Trick-or-Treating was pretty much as good as we could have hoped for.  Meg and Finn were full of candy motivation, and ran from door to door with their buddies in eager haste to get more.  As we were moving along, I noticed Meg was being burdened down by her treat bucket.  I asked her if she would like me to hold it for her.  She just kept running as said, "no mom, I need to get more!"  She most definitely has Halloween figured out.  Having children makes holidays awesome!
After our epic haul of trick-or-treating goodies, we spent Sunday recovering and relaxing.  The girls especially love watching videos with daddy.

Monday, September 21, 2015

.it's coming on fall.

and just like that summer is over.  I have to admit a part of me is going to miss the warmer days, which is saying something because I detest heat, but having little people, those warm days are a breath of fresh air from the humdrum of the house.  Fall and is my favorite still by far, but the idea of being cooped up in a house on cold days with wound up children gives me just a slight bit of anxiety.  But it is what it is, and we have really enjoyed these past few weeks of summer.

The yard and garden have completely transformed in the year we've been here.  With much thanks to my mother and her green thumb we actually have flowers and trees that are growing abundantly.  Finn and I have waited eagerly for these dahlias to open up, and it was worth the wait...aren't they beautiful?

Over the summer, our neighborhood does group park days.  These were much look forward to at our house giving us a change of pace and a chance for the kids to play with all the neighbor kids.  Our last one was at the end of August up to Silver Lake.  I love being out in nature with the little dudes!
 and we love having our gaggle of neighbor kids!
 Roy and I were finally able to celebrate our anniversary with our sunset dinner and sailing excursion.  It was sweet, even if I did get a bit sea sick towards the end...I have no stomach for boats apparently.
8 years with this handsome boy!

seriously so beautiful!!!

At the end of August, I started dabbling with our cnc router that Roy got.  I started making a few things, and received such positive feedback from friends and family, that I started looking into doing this as a side business.  I still can't believe how much it has taken off in the last three weeks, just by word of mouth.  I'm hoping to get things set up soon for an etsy shop and see where it goes from there.  I feel like I'm supposed to pursue this for whatever reason, and hope that it does well.

At the beginning of September we celebrated my Grandma's 90th birthday.  She is amazing, and loved by so many!  I'm blessed to call her mind!!!

Eisley made some giant leaps this month as well.  She finally took up walking, and has mastered it fairly quickly, she also somehow bypassed our child gate system and took her first tumble down the stairs...followed the next day with her first dose of pink eye.
She has recovered from both and is as spunky and happy as ever.

Finn started his second year of preschool, and has had some anxiety about it.  He tells me he doesn't like big groups of kids, and so he stresses out every time I drop him off, but when I pick him up he always says  he had a good there's that.  I'm hoping it gets better as the year goes.

We family reunioned it up in conjunction with my Grandma's birthday and had a good old time.  Since my parents are on their mission, me and my sisters took on a lot of the work and planning.  It was A LOT of work, and we definitely missed the expertise of my mom and sister Kay, but I think it came off pretty well.  As you can see, being 90 does not stop my grandma from doing much.
 We played, ate, and danced ourselves silly!

We are still taking full advantage of the warm days by getting out and playing.  E and Ms. M had a skinny dipping session and really enjoyed splashing each other.
 E is mastering her hand eye coordination.
 One of the biggest things to happen this month is my first actual girls night over since being a mom.  So for the first time in nearly 5 years I had no babies with me during the night. It was very much appreciated and I love that I have good friends that will do things like this with me.  It wasn't actually very restful as we stayed up until 2 talking, but it was something I could get used to.
 Meg's latest thing is taking pictures.  My phone is loaded with blurred images of everyday catching E in a falling moment.  It's pretty cute!
 Finn has been getting into puzzles a lot lately, and we recently acquired 5 new ones from a neighbor.  We spent a rainy afternoon together while his sisters slept.  Those are moments I won't trade for anything.

Meg is growing up too and now sleeps in her own big girl bed.  She tells me every night, "this my new bed mommy.  you like it?"  She also insists on sleeping with everything she can humanly scrounge up before bed ie. books, jewelry, dress up dresses, stickers, toys.  I go in after she's fallen asleep and clear the clutter so that she can actually sleep.

This is just a sampling of all the happenings this past month, but it's wonderful to look back and see all the goodness that is apart of our lives!

Monday, August 17, 2015

.waning summer.

It's been an incredibly busy summer for us...but considering we still have three very young kids it was still very low key in most ways.  
sparklers with Finn on the 24th

Roy has been gone a lot with scouts and work this past month so we definitely appreciate having him home when he is.  The last week of July he spent a week up at Bear Lake with the scouts and had a good time keeping everybody alive, but he was ready to be home by Saturday.
saying good morning to all of us one day

August 4th we celebrated our 8th anniversary.  We had big plans to go sailing and actually spend a night out together, but it totally flopped when we had to re-schedule our sailing date, and I got sick.   Instead we settled for a Temple date and dinner on Saturday.  It feels like life has been giving us a lot of different turns lately so we are learning to go with the flow and not be terribly disappointed when things don't go as planned.  
8 years ago when Roy was a model and we were a lot of ways.
 The kids have been busy playing and living up the summer weather.  We love having good neighbors close that have kids that come and go as they wish so that there is always someone to play with.  E stays with me most days while Finn, and his tag along Meg play.  Her mullet is finally long enough for two little pigs and it is the sweetest thing ever.
She was screaming at ants when I took this picture.
 The end of the summer brings a lot of activity in our neighborhood.  We have a carnival, harvest fair, and a neighborhood block party, all within two months.  We enjoyed our night at the carnival letting the kids sugar themselves up and running until they dropped.
When Meg was asked what she wanted painted on her face she just said, "pink".  
 Finn is always wanting to go to Grandma Caroline's house because she has the best toys and feeds him well.  She invited us out to her parents house who live out on a lake for a picnic and swimming.  Let's just say it was a little slice of heaven.  Lots of toys, water, and food to keep any kid happy.  We couldn't get over how incredibly awesome their set up was.  We will be spending many more summer days playing out there!
the kids playing with Laura on the private beach

Besides a pea flop earlier this spring, our garden has been producing like mad.  I find growing things so satisfying and I'm so happy that all this food is so healthy for us.  My kids love eating carrots and cucumbers straight out of the garden.  And I can eat all the cherry tomatoes I want.

We continued out summer fun this past week with a trip to the county fair which is just down the road from my parents house.  We were lucky to have my sister and her kids come to help me out with the littles.  We had a lot of fun even in the VERY hot weather.
E especially loved the sugary goodness of the cotton candy.  She was covered from head to toe in a pink glaze by the time we got home.
 Finn really enjoyed it the most. He was excited about all the animals and things to see.  He even road one of the smaller kid coasters at the carnival.  He was smiling so big until it actually started going.  Then his face instantly went to surprised terror as the ride screamed around.  He never cried, but was more then eager to get off.  He opted for the kiddie train ride that went around in a small circle topping out at snail speed next.  He declared it to be just the ride speed...that boy kills me!
the petting zoo was a big hit with this blondie!
To finish the week out Finn and Roy went to a monster truck rally.  Boy heaven!!!  While the boy's played with big trucks, the girls and I went and got PINK frozen yogurt...a most happy night for all.

School starts for Finn in a mere two weeks so we are soaking up these last few free days of summer,