Tuesday, September 23, 2014

it's been said

That there on the right is her pirate face. Kills me.

Get comfortable. I've been saving these up for  months. Enjoy!

Lou: I love my daddy...and mommy. Annabelle too. And me. I love Grandma and Don Don too...and...Cap'n Picard.

and then there was this:

{while watching Frozen, to Aunt Don Don, in reference to the giant snowman monster guy}

Belle: Worf could beat him up. He's a Klingon. Klingon's are really strong.

and also this:

{in church, after someone held up a picture of Captain Moroni and asked who it was}
Random Kid: Captain Moroni!
Lou: HEY! That's like CAP'N PICARD!"

Also, they can each recite the opening lines of Star Trek: The Next Generation. You know, "Space, the final frontier. These are the voyages of the Starship Enterprise..." Except Belle says, "Space, the final frontier. These are the boar-dages.." And we love it. :)

{We never claimed we weren't raising nerds...this just really solidifies it...}
{while I'm wearing my glasses}
Belle: Mom, when you look at me, you look like a grandma.
Me: Hey, I think I look cute!
Belle: Um. You look like a cute grandma!
Me: Have you guys been playing on my bed?
Belle: No....we're not playing. We're jumping.
{with ten minutes left of church}
Lou: I wanna go home! I'm tired of churching!
Belle: I'm trying to think what Miley and Chamine's {dogs} favorite colors are.
Hmmm...They can't use words, so I don't know...
Maybe the color of their fur is their favorite color?
{as we get ready to make cookies, Lou takes out a giant salad fork}
Lou: Mom, we need this giant pork to make cookies.
{I love that she still switches her Fs and Ps. 
It means she's not quite grown up, right?}

Lou: Do you wanna build a snowman? DING! {the music}
Lou: jick-oh-rish = licorice
{when checking to see if I was listening}
Belle: Did you hear all of me?
Belle: Can you say, "El Chupacabra"?
Lou: El Chupa-blah-blah.
{from the Planes movie}
{during dinner}
Me: Here Lou. Have another bite.
Lou: No I'm breaking.
{she's taking a break}
{after I give Lou a hug, after working out, before showering}
Lou: You smell like...eck-er-sizing.
{yes, yes I do}
Me: Lou, why don't you poop in the potty?
Lou: I like your beautiful blue eyes!
{and then}
Me: Hey, are you pooping your pants?
Lou, looking around for something to distract me: I'm just...looking...at the dog (a toy).
Me: Lou, who's your favorite princess?
Lou: I like Super Why-a and Jack (from Super Why!).
{when two very disrespectful Asians in Yellowstone cut Lou off from me and start jibbering in her face}
{then literally pushes them out of the way and continues her rant}
Day are so rude! Day are teasing me!
{I died laughing. Especially since we'd had an unusual amount of discourteous tourists that trip.}
Lou waiting for Belle to get out of kindergarten, reciting the letters on the storm drain. Ha ha.

Jess: Hey, what do you girls want to do tonight?
Lou, without missing a beat: Go to Lellowstone.
{while the girls play in the parked car and trade seats, climbing over one another}
Lou: ...Uh...this is awkward...
Lou: My shirt is ouching me!
Belle: Mom, can I have a big marshmallow?
Me: Sure. You can have one now or two in five minutes.
Belle: I'll wait!
Lou: I wanna marshmallow!
Me: Okay. You can have one now or you can have two in five minutes.
Lou: I want one now!
{ha ha ha ha}
Jess: Okay Annabelle. Your turn to pray.
Lou: No I pray!
Jess: No Annabelle's turn.
Lou: Heav-ee Fad-der...
Belle: Okay, you can bust the prayer...
{bust it out}
Me: Get that comb out of your underwear.
Lou: But issa like a pocket...
{in the middle of singing a bunch of primary songs while driving}
Belle: We're just busting out church songs.
{while barbecue chicken cooks in the crock pot}
Lou, sniffing: Mmmmm! Yum! I want some of that Barbie chicken!
{the day after her birthday, to a friend}
Belle: I can't believe I'm five! I'm a whole hand!
{after I sneeze}
Lou: Mommy, you sound like a witch!
Belle: Lou, is Mitchell (a friend) a boy?
Lou: Yes, he's a boy.
Belle: He's a boyfriend!
Lou: No, I no like boyfriends!

She asked me to straighten her hair. And then she was twelve.

Lou: I not be a mom OR a dad when I grow up. I be a Whitney! 
{Aunt Whitney, who just returned from her mission in Korea}
{on a Saturday night]
Me: Did you poop today?
Lou: Uh...yes. 
Me: Oh, really? When?
Lou: Uh...Friday...at four.
Lou: Mom, I be Hiccup for Halloween and you be Toothless? And I can ride you? And you have wings?
Lou: Mom can I please have a brownie!? I told you six times.
Belle: I'm glad I have a daddy with red hair. I don't want a daddy with any other color hair.
Lou: When I grow up to be a daddy, I build Lego pirate ships.
{after picking Lou up from preschool}
Me: Were you a nice girl today?
Lou: Yes. People LOVE me.
{true. dat.}
Me: Do you want to go to a fancy restaurant tonight?
Lou: Cracker Barrel?!!!
{while Lou runs around in spazzy circles with a stroller}
Me: Hey Lou, why are you being psycho?
Lou: I not! I being a kid!

Wednesday, September 17, 2014


one // I got a smart phone. I know. Jess and I are honestly just about the last people on earth to take the plunge into phone servitude. I have very mixed feelings about this contraption. I really love its convenience factor. But as a long-time dumb phone user, I'm also annoyed by all it's fanciness. Also, in general I don't love smart phones. I'm so tired of the world constantly looking down. All the time. I can't count the number of "conversations" I've had with people without them looking at me once. It's my biggest pet peeve ever. My hope is that my phone is useful and not distracting. I have no games or tricks on it. It's used for work, coupons, directions, and taking photos. Also, the girls don't know it's "smart," and they will never know. 

two // The kindergartner is SO HAPPY. She goes to bed happy and excited and wakes up happy and excited and comes home talking 100 miles per hour, telling me every little thing that happened. I'm so happy she's so happy. She's also been working hard at scamming the people we love to raise money for her school fundraiser. All those bears on her neck? Thank you dear friends and family who bought something from our little con artist - she won those bears because of your contributions. :) (And she literally wears them all day, every day. Including while she sleeps. She broke the original lanyard and is now sporting them with yarn. She's very proud and grateful.)

three // Lou is the most proud preschooler on the planet. And then we added tumbling, which shot her straight up to the moon. She is so proud to be so big. She's absolutely hysterical in tumbling. She cannot follow directions to save her life, and I literally cry watching her because I can't stop laughing. This morning at tumbling, as she literally sprinted away from me (such a totally different experience than her sister), I realized how much easier it is watching Lou grow up. I'm definitely not okay with her getting big; it's that she's so happy to be getting big. It makes it easy to be happy with her. She is so brave and confident, and I'm so glad.

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

on the way home

As we often do, we traveled home from Yellowstone via Jackson Hole and the magnificent Grand Tetons. I think this time around, we secretly wanted those Tetons to redeem themselves after our last very soggy, semi depressing trip. And they did not disappoint. ​

We stopped and had our traditional picnic at Jenny Lake, took our time driving through the park and taking photos, then ended with the customary run around the park to get the last wiggles out before driving home. It was the perfect end to the perfect trip.

I love love love how much that Lou loves her sister.

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

everything we needed

We did something kind of crazy. We went back to Yellowstone. 

I wasn't kidding when I said that this whole kindergarten thing wasn't really thrilling for any of us. It meant the end of an era. One of us was starting something new and big. And that new and big thing would change everything.

Jess and I decided to "just see" if we could find rooms in the park in the weeks just before kindergarten. I've mentioned this a few times, but it bears repeating: if you want to stay in the park, it requires a lot of time, wishful thinking, and some pixie dust. The room numbers are sparse, and you and every hopeful European want that dang room, toilet or not. When we did indeed find rooms, and in our favorite spots, we decided to give it a go. One last go before we let our baby into the world.

Yellowstone always acts as a sort of catharsis for us, a cleansing, a refreshing dunk in rotten-egg smell steam. Our heads are always clear, priorities screwed down tight. All the things that matter matter again. And this trip was no exception. 

It was everything we needed to pull together our courage. To spend uninterrupted time together laughing and giggling and eating camp stove food that tastes gourmet because it's so much better than national park food. To draw pictures in the dirt, dangle our legs off the boardwalk and watch a little of God's wonderful earth put on a show. To cram our tiny family into a tinier room. To lick up the best ice cream on earth, sitting on Old Faithful's porch. 

And our little anxious Annabelle - the worries in her forehead melted away. Her dark tooth smile came back. Lou readily welcomed back her partner in crime, and they were at their best - playing and scheming and imagining and coloring. The redhead lost his head spending hours wandering through steam and sky, capturing our world frame by frame. And the mama got to sit back and see it all melt away.

This trip wasn't so much about what we saw, although you cannot go to Yellowstone and not see something amazing. It was about finding the ground under our feet. It was about the kind of clarity we've been desperate to find for years now. It was so much more than I can type here, but let me say this: it was everything we needed, exactly when we needed it. 

We saw more bison jams this year than ever before. Bison are my favorite.
I love how they DO. NOT. CARE.

There it is.

Okay. So observe me with my children casually walking by this bison. Like, oh hey.
The tourists behind me were fuh-reaking out. Like straight up panic attack.
Their son (a teenager) was shrieking at the top of his lungs,
and my girls are like. What. It's just a bison.

Old Faithful in all her glory.
We have so many photos of her close up - but I love this.
Look at those people.

Watching Fountain Geyser from primo seats.

We saw two eagles within minutes of driving into the park.
A good omen for sure. :)

There is no other photo in the history of photos that so
accurately describes tourists and our children.

We totally took the giant runner stroller with us.
We loaded the girls up with food, toys, coloring books
and spent hours in the Old Faithful Geyser Basin.

Running through Jet Geyser's steam.
Jet is one of my very faves.

He'll kill me for this.
But this is what he does at night.
And check out what he captures:


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