Tuesday, December 23, 2014

simple christmas

So Wednesday night (just hours after I last posted here, in fact) found me mostly in the bathroom, my bodily fluids fighting for the quickest exit strategy. It was freaking miserable. The debate still continues as to whether I had yet another virus or if I was food poisoned. It doesn't really matter - both verdicts had the same evidence I'm not too anxious to repeat.

But before all that, this happened. 

We went to Grammy's to take presents and a few more ornaments. We knocked and rang a few times until her hearing aids picked us up, and I saw her coming to the door, a skip in her 85 year old step. She clapped with joy. Pure joy. And she shuffled us in, the girls simultaneously hugging Grammy's legs and stripping off their coats, rushing to fill her tree with presents and sparkles. We had hot chocolate and sat and talked while the girls ran around playing in this home that has become a second home to them. They've learned the art of playing carefully, and when the heater turns on, they camp out on the floor by the vent, letting the warm air wash over them.

We like to stuff our Christmas agenda to the point of ridiculous. We love all the events and the festivities, the lights and magic. However, this year we've been sick just enough that we've missed a lot of everything. But as we sat there in Grammy's peaceful house, my heart was so full of love - for this woman, for the opportunity my girls have to not only know her, but to be so close to her. And for this Christmas season and the tiny Christmas tree that has brought so much joy into our lives this Christmas season. We haven't done all the things. But we've done the important things.

Three cheers for a changed year and a beautiful, simple Christmas. Merry Christmas Eve Eve y'all. :)

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

catch upppp

Well, we survived THE FLU 2014. It wasn't just the girls. It was me too. Fevers all around. Drug(s) all around. General misery alllll. around. But for now we're fairly healthy. We've got the leftover hack and I swear the girls could sleep for days after all that not sleeping and writhing coupled with some ridiculous delirium, but we're back.

In between our dying phases (I think maybe we had two flu bugs, back to back, the first more brutal than the second, seriously) and before and after, I took a few photos (read: a million). And now is as good a time as any to start oversharing.

These cousins are the besties of all besties. They played every second they could while in St. George. One day I did fancy matchy hair dos for them.

And we played at the park. 

And Lou got in trouble (in the above photo Annabelle's telling me how annoying it is that Lou is shoveling sand back in to the hole that she and Annalise spent thirty minutes digging out).

She felt great about it. Also, if you ever send me a text I disagree with, you can expect to get this photo in return.

My sister Kristen and I took the most epic selfies. Flare included. BOOM.

Then Belle took some really lovely selfies.  

Belle got her school pictures. I couldn't love them more. I love that when the camera lady told her to show her teeth for her smile, she did just that. Seriously. This picture makes my day, and she loves it so. Cutest thing. I love this kindergarten age so much - sort of big, but still sweet and innocent.

Jess and I snuck away to the First Presidency Christmas Devotional. If you didn't have a chance to listen or watch, head on over here. So good. So very very good. P.S. I want to fix my bangs in that photo so bad it hurts.

In between illnesses, we went to the Utah Symphony's Christmas concert (for kids). It's always lovely (we hit it up every year). It's short, sweet, and filled with familiar and jolly tunes the kids love. Santa makes a yearly appearance and conducts the symphony, which is always a kick. The girls also love getting dressed up fancy, so it's a total win. And don't worry - we also took them to a very fancy lunch beforehand. Sam's Club. Wins allll aroundddd. :)

Crafty craftiness. I'll be real here. I don't love crafting with kids. If it can't be done with a computer, I'd really rather not touch it. It's messy and so disorganized and oh my gosh do you see how that isn't straight? But the girls love it. And thank goodness for prepackaged craft kits and other crafty people on Pinterest who make it easy for me. 

Oh Home Depot. How we love thee. These are little holiday yard stakes. I find them basically the cutest. I love how each girl used the stickers so differently.

We bought Gram a tiny Christmas tree that was delivered the night we all fell into bed with fevers. And bless her soul, she saved the decorating for the girls, for when they got better. The girls made a few ornaments for her and Gram had a string of lights from the seventies (that somehow still works) as well as some vintage ornaments, and they got busy. We'll make more visits in the next few days with more ornaments. (See: crafty craftiness.)

And last of all - we got a giant Christmas tree that's bigger than my bedroom. But quite magical.

Monday, December 8, 2014


We played outside today.
One of us even ditched her sweater.
Today on December 8.
Like it was a beautiful fall day.
Turns out global warming is my favorite season.

Turns out Lou doesn't like sharing.

Wednesday, December 3, 2014


So this phone of mine. I take so many random photos. None of them have anything to do with the next. But all of them are my favorite. And what better place to dish out a bunch of random photos than here? :) Let's get started.

I started peeling a clementine for Belle, but she asked if she could peel it. I handed it over, and she noticed a heart! She thought that I did it on purpose, but it was a lovely accident! :) Also, I love that Grandma Lichelle face.

Oh heaven help us. These stick horses at Home Depot started it all. Lou's obsessed with horses. She's never even been on one, but she's totally obsessed. She can spot a horse toy from a million miles away. Anywhere. And she's even informed me that "Jesus really wants me to ride a horse Mommy." Oh boy.

So the girls got to be in the photo shoot for the Utah Tumbling Academy's new website (here - Annabelle's on this page (the picture next to Beginning Tumbling) and Lou's here - the goof second in line :) ). They thought they were so fancy and had the best time. Annabelle's group was composed of a few from her class as well as the next class. Those girls were doing back handsprings and the fire in Annabelle's eyes started the minute those girls started jumping around. She's got some new goals in sight. :) (Also, please observe how tall Annabelle is in the handstand. Whoa.)

And the Christmas decorations come out. I pulled them out just before we headed down to St. George for Thanksgiving, and the little kid nativity set has been played with almost constantly since. Also, I hope I always have a big ol' window with a seat in my home. It's the best play place in the world.

This so captures the essence of their personalities. Lou chose to paint on blank paper - wild and unruly. Belle went and cut out a Christmas scene and took her sweet time painting in the lines - composed and steady.

We are Home Depot's Kid Workshop's biggest fans. We went in St. George and were happily surprised to find Santa in attendance. The girls made darling little banks (where you save money for yourself and to gift) and both insisted that they show Santa their good work when they were done. I love cousin Annalise's face. This was her first foray into the Home Depot Kids Workshop world. And all that hammering and ruckus was pretty intense. 

And one more. Just because this tiny tumbler is pretty cute. :)

Thursday, November 20, 2014

sleep sleep sleep

So apparently our kids are tired. Like all the time? I dumped all my phone's photos on to the computer and discovered so many sleeping babies. Two things:

1. When we took away Lou's sippy, she began the era of nap refusal. She will not officially nap. But she will randomly fall asleep still. In fact, when she's really tired, I just throw on Tinker Bell, scratch her back for a minute, and she's out. Just don't even suggest the word nap. Or map. Or anything resembling the word nap. If she can be tricked in to it or lulled to sleep by the car, she'll snooze. Just don't ask her to admit to it, and she'll probably conk out. (She's not at all stubborn. Why do you ask?)

2. Annabelle hasn't napped for a long time. That said, kindergarten wears her out. So much learning and playing and figuring out this whole new world of hers. She occasionally falls asleep randomly in the car and often falls asleep before the last words of the family prayer are said at night.

In any case, I love me some sleeping babies. Even when the babies aren't so much babies anymore. :) They'll always be my babies, and I'll probably be taking creepster sleeping photos of them until they move out. :)

Click here to see this same scene three years ago. I die.

Out right in the middle of reading Snowflake Bentley. We read it on the first day of snow. :)

Even vikings get tired.

Good a place as any...
I like that tiny tiny smile. 

They kind of have twin faces. Remember? :)


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