Monday, January 31, 2011

read or write?

January 23, 2008

Just wanted to make a note on how much I love my son. He’s so amazing and definitely my best friend after Jeff. Yesterday was Martin Luther King Jr. day so I didn’t have Audrey which I usually do on Mondays. Jeff still had to work but it was a beautiful day. The temp. didn’t get above 35 degrees but the sun was shining and the sky was clear. It was absolutely gorgeous. Braxton was up early so we were able to get up with Jeff and get him off. Then Braxton and I read some books and hung out a bit. I needed to go into Bellingham to Dr. Wessel's office to get a supplement so I decided to dress Braxton and I extra warm and grab the stroller. We went to Boulevard park (my absolute favorite) after the stop at the Dr.’s and walked the boardwalk. It was cold and crisp but we were bundled. Braxton loves going there and looking at all the boats in the water and seeing all the dogs and babies on their walks. After our walk we went into the Wood’s coffee shop right down at the park and got hot chocolate. Then we walked down on the rocks and sat and drank our cocoa and threw rocks into the water. It was so beautiful and fun and relaxing. Braxton had a great day and we were both really rejuvenated after not being able to be outside very much because the weather has been so windy and rainy. I so enjoyed spending the day down at the bay with my son, my friend.

I made homemade chili for dinner and after Jeff had gotten home and we had eaten we went into town as a family and got Jeff a boot dryer for his work boats. They have been getting soaked daily. Then we went to Grandma Mary’s and had a nice visit with her. She gave me her sewing machine which I am totally excited to start yet another hobby.

I sat down to write in my journal, now that my kids are ALL napping and again, I would rather read than write. I learn so much from reading my journal.

The interesting thing about this post 3 years ago is that I just now, like today, am finally comfortable using the sewing machine my Grandma gave me way back when. Up until this point it has sat in my garage, waiting to be used, or gently used when I had a friend over who knew how to use it. Now I can use it. I can thread it, do the bobbin, and sew all by myself. That's progress. Small steps.

Another, more interesting thing, is that my little boy is grown up. I'm glad I took those times to play with him and do fun outings. I thought somehow, those days would last forever but they haven't. I really did enjoy them.

Sunday, January 30, 2011

ONE is so FUN

Adelle at one

Braxton at one

Emmett at one!

Emmett isn't too sure about walking but if there is something he wants he will stand up to get it.

This is where you can usually find him. On top of anything that there is to get on top of. He's so funny. I think he will be the adventurous one of the bunch.
Emmett weighs in at 23 pounds!
I think he's adjusted to forward facing. I thought he'd love it instantly; being able to be in the know and all. He wasn't such a fan at first. He didn't like that he could see me, but he couldn't reach me. It was like I was teasing him. It was hard for me too because he has to be buckled and he would just reach for me. He's over that now, as you can tell. Only took a drive or two.
The favorite toy. Braxton got this toy for his first birthday and all my kids have loved it! It's fun for all ages and one of the few toys that doesn't get put in the closet and forgotten.

Something really miraculous happens when these little ones turn one. I'm 3 for 3 so far. It seems like after their first birthday they just grow up really fast.
Emmett has been into everything this past week. His personality is budding like crazy and he thinks he can do anything, say anything just like Brax and Adelle.
My favorite things about Emmett right now are:
1. The cell phone. He loves my phone and thinks it is his. He puts it up to his ear and says,
"ha, dud." This means "hi dad."
2. If your happy and you know it. We sing this song and he claps his hands and throws up his arms for Hooray!
3. He likes to play chase. If you get down and start to crawl after him he will turn and go the other way as fast as he can.
4. He's discovered his male identifier and every time his diaper is off he has to manually make sure all parts are still there.
5. I've said this before but he is crazy about balls of any sort and he crawls around searching for them and calling, "ball, ball, ball..."
6. He can climb onto Adelle's bed and this means he is super cool and big.
7. When he is done eating we know it because he throws he starts throwing the food on the floor.
8. He loves the bath and splashes like crazy.
9. He loves music and bobs to the beat of any tune. Today he was bobbing to the hymn in church which made me laugh.
10. He climbs up onto things and then screams because he can't get down. This is pretty funny. Especially if we are in the other room.
11. Adelle still thinks Emmett is her baby. I can't wait until he's bigger than her.
12. His sideburns. period.

Emmett is so fun. He's making so many fun sounds:
nana (banana), momma, dadada, bra(brother), yeah, ball

Saturday, January 29, 2011

sweet saturday

i was up late.
miss-communicating with my best friend (husband).
i am not very rational at night when i am tired.
i'm glad we don't go to bed mad.
emmett is teething.
i'm glad i got to rock him.
adelle was talking in her sleep a good part of the night.
she gets that from me.
jeff's alarm went off early and he hit the road.
i'm glad i got up with him.
braxton got up way early.
we cuddled on the couch before the sun rose.
we shared a blanket.
we watched Karate Kid 4.
it's going to be a good day.
a sweet saturday.

Thursday, January 27, 2011


I thought this picture illustrated my point quite perfectly. The "woman" sitting on top of the "man." Kate had the whole floor, even the whole house, but decided to park it right on Emmett!

So the other day we drove up to Squamish, BC, to watch my brother dominate the basketball court. After a really exciting game (they lost by 1) we all went to dinner at one of Bryce's favorite local spots. By all, I mean the five of us, my parents, my sister and her kids, my aunt and my gramy. Oh, and my brother was there too. So we all sitting there, the kids are cooperating and we're having a good time when Adelle decides she wants to sit by Uncle Bryce. "I want to sit by Uncle Bryce," she said, a little too whiny. Well both seats next to Uncle Bryce were taken so Bryce thoughtfully told Adelle she could come sit on his lap. "No, I want to sit NEXT to Uncle Bryce!" she said this time with a little more urgency and on the verge of doing whatever it would take for her to get her way. As if the tone of her voice wasn't enough my darling two year old got down from her current chair and walked over to make it clear where she wanted to sit. Once planted there she repeated herself, this time I knew that if she didn't get what she wanted there would be a scene and I really didn't want to draw more attention to our table of 15 then there already was. Seeing her standing there and hearing her desire, her kind brother quietly got up and politely said, "here Adelle, you can sit here." It was right next to Bryce. The very seat she longed for. So what does she do? Sits right down, grins from ear to ear and enjoys her chicken and fries.
This was entertaining for most people there. It was heart wrenching for me to witness my five year old son, yet again, looking out for the needs of his kid sister. Not to mention saving me from what could have been really embarrassing. Once again putting himself second and her first. My brother, the youngest in the family I might add, thought this whole situation was a joke. "Is this when it starts?" he asked, implying that women always get their way. Judging from the picture up top, I think it starts earlier than 2!

Monday, January 24, 2011

Adelle's sweet moves

The secrets out. My kids and I listen to hip-hop and bust moves all day.

party hats

Friday, January 21, 2011

extreme Portland makeover

Andrea Plain and Short (remember "Sarah Plain and Tall"?)

Shelby, Andrea, Mindi
Andrea meets Make-up

Andrea gets primped up by wonderful friends
I've started this post like 500 times, then quit, and restarted because
1: It makes me cry every time
2: I don't know how to fully express what I feel...there is so much

Last Saturday these ladies and I spent the day/night together in Portland doing girl stuff! I love being a girl and being with girls who I love. It was so refreshing and wonderful.
Wonderful because I made a decision just for me. This is uncommon for any mom, and really uncommon for me. Every decision I make is based around my husband/kids, and rightfully so. That is why they are awesome (I don't take credit for my husband being awesome, his parents deserve that credit!). But my kids, really, I do sacrifice a lot for them but it's completely worth it because they are great kids and I can see my efforts really sustaining them and enabling them to thrive and live happy lives. So I don't have any complaints about putting them first. However, I was feeling a little burnt out and when the invitation came for me to get away for a night with some special friends, I jumped for joy. Jeff jumped for joy as well, which told me that he too was feeling that I needed something and I think he probably thought something like, "do anything, just come back happy and yourself again!!" Also my amazing parents, aunt, and Grammy, must have known I needed to go as well as they all came over prior to my departure with early birthday money for me to be able to use for travel expenses, shopping....
So basically it was apparent to many that I needed something and they must have been hoping that this was going to be the fix-all.
So I went and was totally spoiled. Mindi and Shelby have been my best girl friends since high-school and continue to be such great friends. We don't see each other often, like only a couple times a year, but when we are back in touch we pick up just where we left off and it's so fun to grow old with people who share so much of your past. These girls have always been there for me and we have so many fun memories together. I love them like family and it was so fun to be together and catch up on life. Mindi was all about taking care of us and making sure that Shelby had the best birthday and that I didn't have to worry about anything. She painted my fingernails, curled both of our hair, put on my makeup, she even carried my wallet in her purse so that I wouldn't have to carry anything. It was so nice.
We talked and talked and talked and laughed and laughed and laughed. We shopped, ate out, went to fancy Portland touristy places, slept in, ordered room was wonderful. My family had fun without me too. Jeff is super-dad and had everything under control. I know I was able to enjoy myself and actually rest and relax because I didn't worry about my family at all. I knew they were well taken care of and I knew they were getting special time with dad.
I also had a realization while I was gone. The fact that I needed a breather doesn't classify me as an incapable mom. I've always had this misconception that those who need/take breaks are weak or selfish. How wrong of me to pass that judgement and how wise of me to realize that I needed something and to take care of it before the problems magnified. I was able to get away, re-vamp, and come back thankful and ready for the next obstacle. I am so blessed to have so many wonderful people in my life and so much support.
Here is what my husband said to me when I came home;
"See ya later, my turn, I'm so tired..."
"That's crazy, I get breakfast going, then clean it up, then it's time for lunch, then clean it up....on top of playing, reading, changing diapers, taking Adelle potty, problem solving...I don't know how you do it all and nurse the baby too??!!"
"You don't have to wear makeup to look good."

So, here I am. Back to my plain, happy self and living my very full, blessed life. Exactly where I want to be.


Thursday, January 20, 2011


This is me and my sister back in the day. We are 19 months apart and in this picture we are 2 1/2 and 1. The exact ages of our little girls.

Here are our little sista's. They are the sweetest girls.

I think the only thing better then having a sister, always there, 19 months younger, is having a cousin, down the street, 16 months younger!
Adelle is a lucky little girl.
I hope these girls grow up to be the best of girlfriends.

As for me, I miss my sister. I'm glad we are both moms now because we get along way better. It's like we have other people to think about instead of ourselves :) We usually see each other at least 3 times a week and this week she is gone with her kids! No trade-zies for us this week.

Love you Lesh!

Monday, January 17, 2011

one year ago...

This picture was taken a year ago right before my mom took the kids to her house while I delivered Emmett.
I can't believe how much this little miracle boy has changed our family.

I used to say I wanted to defy the rules of birth order and I wanted all of my children to grow up as if they were the first born, the only. Then, I rationalized, they would each know they were the best and they would each get all the love and attention they needed. They wouldn't feel second best, or third best or have to compete for anything....
I don't think that way anymore. I only have one first born, and he is special and he was the only. He is the best Braxton!
I have a second child, currently mastering the role of "middle child" and she is special too. She is the only girl. The sis.
She is the best Adelle!
And I have the third child. He wasn't the first born, or the first boy, but he is the best! The best Emmett! He brings me so much peace and joy and when I think of him I think of the calm after the storm. This boy is so full of love. He is happy all the time and he smiles regardless if he's being played with, talked too, stepped on, tripped over....he is always happy, never complaining about anything.

Emmett is my little shadow. He follows me everywhere and it's my favorite thing.
When the other kids are busy playing, forgetting about me, he is right there in my arms or at my feet.
When I talk to Emmett he makes me feel like the most important person in the whole world. He literally beams. When I sing to him he smiles and in his own little way begs for more.
I am so thankful he is third. He is so lucky to be loved by not only me and Jeff but also Braxton and Adelle. They are so good to him and he is so lucky to get to play with all their toys, go to all their fun parties, read all their fun books...! He loves to be in their room with them just "hangin' with the big kids."
Happy Birthday Emmett
You have been the best little "surprise!!"

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Snow Daze

It came
It was pretty
We played
It went away
My snow pants are teal

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

"I love Kung Fu"

It's Tuesday. My favorite day of the week because I get to go to MomSpot. Sandwiched between my favorite day Monday; my day at home to do laundry and take Adelle and Emmett to library, and my favorite day Wednesday, when I drive Braxton and his buddy to preschool and hang out in Bellingham. All these days are favorites. As well as Thursday's when the cousins come over to be crazy and Fridays when I sometimes sew with my friend and am often spoiled with a date, compliments of my heart throb. Saturdays are my favorite day to make big breakfasts, go on family outings/walks and Sundays are my all time favorite day with my family, going to church and if I'm lucky getting a nap, or just time alone on a quiet afternoon with my husband and if I'm really lucky, a dinner cooked by someone other than myself (sometimes Jeff, more often my mom/dad or aunt Angela.) So here I am with lots of favorites and, rightfully so.

So back to Tuesday. We're driving to MomSpot and we are running late. How frustrating this is to me! Traffic is bad, we had to get all bundled up... Responsible people should not be late because late can mean lazy, and that I am not! It's not that I'm late because I overslept or because I was blogging or giving myself a pedicure. I'm late, and this happens more frequently than desired, because I try and squeeze as many things into as little time and I always overdo it. I over schedule myself over and over again and it's nobody's fault but my own. My mom came over a few weeks ago and I was feeling overwhelmed with life. The kids were eating their breakfast of homemade biscuits. She looked me straight in the eye and with her mom tone she said, "Andrea Dawn, what are you doing making biscuits?? Give the kids cereal for crying out loud!" So true, and yet really difficult for me to do.

So back to running late. The kids are happy in the backseat and I can see all three of them in my rear view mirror. Smile. Emmett is squawking because he's ticked to be facing the wrong way and the older two are glued to the DVD player that came with our car and that I honestly love (all pride aside this thing is awesome). They are watching Kung Fu Panda and without paying attention I start to ponder on the advice in the movie. Mind you I can't see the screen, eyes on the road, but because the kids are silent I can hear loud and clear and my mind starts to process the lines from the movie...

"nothing is impossible" this is so much easier said than done. Why do I doubt. I have faith, I think. I try really hard but I still fear for some reason. Why do I fear. I know we are capable. I know it will work out.

"one often meets his destiny on the road he takes to avoid it" Isn't it interesting how true this statement is. The first thought that comes to mind is my marriage. lol. I was so adamant about not marrying until after I had graduated college and blah, blah, blah. 28 days after our first date, and halfway done with college, we were engaged. Absolutely crazy and somehow absolutely perfect.

"your mind is like this water, when it is agitated you are unable to see. Allow it to settle and the answer becomes clear" Never argue when you are mad. Peace. I need to be better about not getting too flustered because it confuses my brain and all logic flies out the window. Tired for me equal agitation. Go to bed earlier. Listen more carefully to my husband who is rarely agitated and not crazy (like I am lately).

"there are no accidents" Emmett, my dear Emmett. You came at the time when you were meant and prepared to come and you have blessed my life every moment of yours. Jeff got laid off when he was supposed to. We are where we are for a reason. Life is good. I am growing and being strengthened and supported. It's all meant to be.

"yesterday is history. Tomorrow is a mystery. Today is a gift, that is why they call it the present" I am grateful for this day. I am grateful to go to MomSpot, even if I am running late. How can I help someone else to have a good day? I will say hi to everyone I see and really mean it. My children will never be this age or in this stage again. I will cherish it. My husband thinks I look good and that's all that matters. I will appreciate that and live up to it.

"it takes years to develop ones flexibility" then I guess I am still one young chick! Becoming a mother has helped me with this but I have a ways to go. I'm not being literal here, people.

"you must believe" So true. Let go Andrea. Trust.

"you will never fulfill your destiny until you let go of the illusion of control" Let it be. Let go. Let him be the husband. He's really good at it. Let them grow up, and mess up, and learn. That's what kids do and it's o.k. I will just be the wife and the mom. That's a lot for me right now anyway. I have a role. It is not to worry or fret. It is not to doubt or blame. I am not the expert at everything. I will be an instrument in the hand of my loving Heavenly Father.

So tonight, Tuesday night, I ponder on this day and on my life and my situation. I re-think about the lines from the movie and with a chuckle I remember "there are no accidents". I was meant to listen to that council on this day. Even if it came from a Disney movie.
Today was "...a gift.." and I was blessed. Did I cherish it? Yes. Did I "believe"? Yes. Am I perfect? No, but hey, there was no quote in the movie saying I'm supposed to be perfect!

Friday, January 7, 2011

Bowl of Sunshine

No gloomy around here! Rainy, windy, yucky weather stand back and be prepared to be conquered!
This salad was introduced to me by a friend at MomSpot and this morning I tried it out.
a few grapefruit
an orange (because my kids love, love, love oranges I only felt right using one)
some pomegranate seeds
drizzled with a bit of honey and lemon juice

Monday, January 3, 2011

My one word for 2011


It's that simple.
Or is it?

Saturday, January 1, 2011

I heart eggnog & squash

Thanks Auntie Melissa for the fun heart pancake mold thingies

We got sent home with some eggnog on Christmas.
I heart eggnog, so does the fam.
I heart feeding my family healthy.
Eggnog is not healthy in abundance.....but in moderation, maybe?
We had a whole big bowl of leftover squash in our fridge that my kids (and husband) decided they didn't like.
I heart squash.
Squash is healthy.
So, what do I do....
Mix up the squash with some brown rice flour and some whole wheat flour,
add a little baking powder and soda,
some salt, vanilla, oil,
add eggnog to get it to pancake consistency.
What happens next is pure bliss for me.
My whole family (who doesn't like squash remember) cleaning up all the pancakes and wanting more!
This is so satisfying to me. Sure, I could have poured us each a glass of eggnog and threw out the squash. That would have made the fam happy. But the family was just as happy with like 1/4 of the eggnog and the whole bowl of squash.
So the breakfast was filled with fiber, vitamin A, iron, protein....
and it was enjoyed by all.
Happy heart for this momma