August 21, 2014

Phoney-Photos of Late

MAKEUP.
The FORCE.
CUPCAKES.
Guard DOG.
SNUGGLE buddies.
HAIR twin.
PAPA rides.
BOOK worm.
First SELFIE.
Girl's best FRIEND.
LOOSE tooth tactics.
LUNCH prep.
FLOWER play.
DADDY love.
One to be IMMUNIZED
BUBBLES.
BULLS-EYE.
SOS.
The PRINCESS.
ANGEL boy.

August 20, 2014

Mama's and Popi's

Mother's Day 2014 is one for the record books.  I was thoroughly spoiled from sun up til sun down.  John went above and beyond anything I had expected, leaving me stunned and confused and feeling very much loved.  After maybe a tiny itty bit of disappointment felt on holidays past, I really did not know how to act or feel when slathered with the overload of love.  
The day started off with four very darling and very excited gift-giving children, HOMEMADE waffles, raspberries (my fav) and cream...hashbrowns, orange julius, etc.    
Yum.  He did good.  They all did good.  I was feeling totally spoiled with my scrumptious breakfast, my new workout clothes, new shoes...
...and especially the sweet homemade cards and gifts...
The fun however, did not end there.  Much to my surprise and complete joy, John had another gift in store...
I have had so much fun riding my cute little bike around town this Summer.
I was perfectly pleased with my Mother's Day and was shocked to discover John had plenty more in store for me.
For anyone whose husband may sometime be neglectful, just stop reading here...
So maybe I've been there before, and that's why its totally acceptably for me to brag endlessly about my amazing husband.  Seriously, he's amazing.  Not only did he cook a a great breakfast, but lunch AND dinner too.
He slaved away in the kitchen most of the day, all the while keeping the mess to a minimum, quite the feat for him.
He made all of my favorite things and everything dish was delish.
I had the best Mother's Day ever.  The spoiling was nice, but mostly I just felt extra incredibly blessed to be the mother of the most amazing children.
John and I both decided while it was nice, my day of spoiling was a bit much. 
I realized I'd rather spend my day relaxing with my best friend and our children, rather than watch him work all day in an attempt to please me.  Although I certainly felt loved, next year things will be simpler and I will be perfectly happy with that.

Father's Day was a bit of a different story.  John tends to purchase guns, ammo, hunting gear, and bronco parts in regular intervals, claiming them part of the nearest approaching holiday.  Thus was the case with Father's Day, however the kids couldn't resist making their usual silly-as-possible Papa's Day cards...
Clearly John enjoyed them.
Of course, it wouldn't be Father's Day without an impromptu wrestling match...
Which happens often around these parts...

John is, without a doubt, slaughtering me when it comes to favorite parent.  He is fun, hardworking, loving, smart, and most important, silly.  The kids ADORE him.  He still tells them a bedtime story every night, tucks them in, sings songs about them, works his butt off non-stop to provide for us, and almost always has a smile on his face.  He is the best.  I feel so lucky to have him as my partner and the father of my children.  
When I asked John what he wanted for Father's Day (besides his previous purchases) he said he wanted to spend time with me.  Thus the book of Summer dates was born...
Despite a rough past few weeks of insane schedules and work madness, we've done pretty good this Summer in our attempt to spend quality time together.
We kicked things off with an awesome night at Usana Amphitheater, entertained by One Republic, The Script, and American Authors...
Despite our aversion to crowds, we had a great night.
We've also had a few adventurous dates as well.  
Like our attempt at trail running despite a crazy down pour...
It wasn't pretty.  I fell.  I fell again.  I wanted to die.  At one point I may have pretended to be Katniss Everdeen.  We survived and after thirty intense minutes, reached the summit...
We've gone to the temple, the shooting range, dinner, movies, and even and the golf course...
Gus made a pretty decent third wheel as we hiked to Dog Lake, which ended up being one of my favorite hikes yet...
The beautiful scenery clearly caused a snap-happiness to overcome me...
When we reached the lake, Gus was off like a shot...
I guess they call it Dog Lake for a reason as our pooch was in heavenly bliss...
Throughout our "Summer Dates" I've come to realize how important (not to mention fun) it is to make time for each other.  We have a few more up and coming dates I'm looking forward to and  hope we continue this Summer tradition all year.

  I love being a Mama, I feel so blessed.  
Our children our everything to us.  
I love them dearly and I love their Popi completely.

July 29, 2014

Bunnies, Baskets, and Big Changes

Easter was an especially hectic time for us this past Spring as it happened to fall on the weekend we closed on our house.  After the stress of 2013, things seemed to fall into place, if anything, a bit quicker than we had anticipated.  

The plan:
List the house ourselves while we take our time finding the perfect place for our ever growing family.  
What really happened:
Stuck a sign in the yard.  Got an offer 2 days later.  Boxed, packed, cleaned, and moved 27 short days later.

John traveled a bit during this time, which made things that much crazier, yet somehow we survived.  Despite the clear need for a bigger place, we were so sad to leave our friends and neighbors and especially our amazing ward.  We definitely made some life long friends in our Country Park 5th Ward and are so grateful for the experiences we had there.  

After an exhausting week of packing most of our belongings into storage, the day before Easter we officially became basement-dwellers.  Thankfully John's parents have a beautiful home with an awesome basement apartment we have been able to stay in while the home hunt continues. 

So between truck loads, boxing and un-boxing, and cleaning like mad, we squeezed in some Easter festivities...
Every year we drive past the neighboring So Jo park and witness literally hundreds of kids seemingly having the time of their lives hunting an endless supply of candy-filled eggs.  Every year our kids whine and cry that they are missing out on the apparent life changing adventure.  So we caved.  

As we awaited the start of the hunt, Macie was filled with trepidation as evidenced by the above and below photos.
Want to know what she's looking at?
Like I said, HUNDREDS of screaming children on a mad dash for candy.  I don't blame her, I'd be intimidated too. 
Somehow they survived and made off with a piece of candy or two. 
 (Not even kidding, pretty disappointing event on all accounts).
Despite the fact that it was over before it really began, we did see a few familiar smiles on display...
Fortunately for her, Tessa missed the entire flop, instead catching up on some much needed Z's.  
Then it was back to the house for more last minute packing and cleaning, before we were off to color eggs.  John's face in the following photo pretty much sums up what moving over a holiday weekend feels like.
Despite our near-collapse like state, the kids had a blast as usual...
Coley seemed to be in a particularly good mood and enjoyed coloring himself just as much, if not more than the eggs themselves.  He even earned some dinero from Papa Lynn for consuming the nastiest thing I've seen, before or since.  
Believe it or not, the endless task of moving wasn't complete and after the kids were tucked in bed, it was back to the house to continue the work.
The next morning, by some miracle, the Easter bunny fulfilled the kids wishes...
We wanted to visit our old ward one last time and headed to church before stopping off at our house for one last family photo before officially saying goodbye to our home on Winford Drive.
What a day.  What a weekend.  After all the craziness, it was great to relax, think about the Savior, and enjoy time together as a family...
However, I'm not certain Tessa enjoyed herself all that much...
After some coaxing...
We finally were able to get a semi-smile out of our beautiful little grouch...
Our new yard, A.K.A. Papa Lynn's pride and joy, made for a great egg hunt.
 Macie's sweet and spunky personality is always a blast to photograph...
 The boys on the other hand love to make things difficult interesting.  After plenty of outtakes, I asked Wyatt to just look handsome...
So under pressure handsome, or even normal, isn't quite a possibility.  
Maybe I'm biased, but candid moments seem to be another story...
I love these two handsome boys and their beautifully sweet sisters.  
Though the many emotions and stresses that come with moving were overwhelming, we survived and had a nice holiday weekend despite it all.  
Now we are feeling settled in our new place and are taking the time we need to make sure we get this upcoming decision right.  We've already had some excitement and disappointment come our way in the long process of finding our next home.  At times it is overwhelmingly stressful to try and figure out where we will end up, but I'm confident God has a plan for our family. 
We are excited for the next adventure in life and can't wait to see what will come our way.