Friday, December 30, 2011


I know I have been so incredibly absent from the blog. The boys and I were gone for almost a month, then we got back and frantically prepared for Christmas (and our anniversary & Preston's birthday which are still coming up...). Add to that clean-up from having the interior of our house painted while we were gone...and yeah, you can see why I've been absent!

So back to the vacation. After a couple of days in L.A., of course we had to go to Disneyland. Unfortunately it was a bit of a let down compared to other times we've been there, but we had fun despite numerous rides being out of commission, a less than stellar Holiday parade, rain, and lots of people. Apparently the boys weren't hampered by the things that irritated me, and they have already started saving money for our next trip.

The boys' favorite rides:
Toy Story Mania
Gadget's Go Coaster
Buzz Lightyear
Thunder Mountain Railroad (for Preston anyway...B didn't like it!)

Sunday, December 11, 2011


We've been busy: walking around, navigating the metro on a search for a double stroller so I can (safely) explore the city with the boys while John is in meetings, taking in a King's game (well, as much as Archer and the people around us could tolerate), and playing at what seems to be the only kid friendly area of downtown L.A.: the park. (And on that note, there are seriously NO kids around. It's bizarre.)

Mostly pictures for now, more later!

Sunday, December 4, 2011

On the Farm

The boys and I have been staying with my parents since a few days before Thanksgiving. John flew back home to work, but we stayed to #1 say goodbye to Auntie Kristen (who just moved to Lithuania), and #2 go on a big road trip to Cali where we'll meet John (who gets to fly instead of riding in a car with 3 little boys for 16 hours)

The boys are super anxious to get started on the road trip, but in the meantime they are having fun helping Poppa on the farm.

"Duck in a Pond"

Friday, November 18, 2011


Every winter, I wonder why we live in N. Idaho.*** I used to enjoy the snow when we lived in almost always melted within the day and it only happened 1 or 2 times per year. Plus the whole city shut down so it was like a mini vacation. Not the case here. When it snows it's usually here to stay for a few months, an people carry on as usual.

Cold, wet, miserable. Thank goodness a vacation is in my very near future!

***4 out of 5 people in this family love the snow and winter, FYI. They are completely giddy and race outside to play. Probably why we still live here. :)

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Happy Halloween

I made the boys' Halloween costumes this year and it was definitely A LOT of work. Peter Pan was pretty simple, but the other two were a little complicated. I need to remember that for next year! It was fun though, and the boys loved them so I guess that made up for all the effort.

We went trick-or-treating with some friends, and we made it exactly 2 houses without incident...then B face-planted on our neighbor's front step and got a bloody nose. He managed to continue on for a little while, but it just wasn't as much fun after that!

Peter Pan, Captain Hook, and the crocodile

Arrrrrrrrrrr! Preston thought it was pretty funny that Captain Hook wore tights and ruffles on his shirt. He said "this is girl's stuff right mom? Why would Captain Hook wear girl's stuff?!" I guess the hook and sword made up for it though.

B made the BEST Peter Pan. He was a little distraught that we forgot pixie dust so John sprinkled salt on his seemed to do the trick!

And my little crocodile. He loved chasing his brothers around and smacking them with his tail.

Saturday, October 29, 2011


Archer has been randomly and sporadically using the toilet for a few months now, but to be honest, I haven't been very consistent with it. Yesterday I decided to put him in undies and see what happened...well, lots of accidents happened! But, I think he is on the right track. We're on to day #2 now, still with some accidents but less so far. We'll see how it goes.

Here is Archer in his potty-training gear...

He looks so cute and innocent, then he goes and does something like pee inside a ride-on school bus toy. (He put on the boots when I was cleaning out our coat closet, but I made him take the boots off after I took this picture - I was a little concerned about pee in the boots!)

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Pumpkin Patch Field Trip

It has been way too long since I blogged. We had a small computer issue (Archer pulled the cord out crooked so it doesn't want to charge properly), so I sent John to Best Buy to see if they could fix it and he came back with an iPad. Blogging from the iPad = a little bit cumbersome. The other computer still works on occasion, but it's no longer convenient since it has to stay in one place.

Anyway...the formatting on this might be a little wonky, but here are some pictures from the boys' field trip to the pumpkin patch.

Archer, on my back during the hayride

Preston racing around with his friends

B and Carter

Contemplating which pumpkin to get

The search for the perfect pumpkin

Saturday, October 22, 2011


Preston: Mom, that makes me so mad. It makes me want to say a bad word.
Me: (a little shocked...wondering what things he is learning in his tiny, sheltered, Christian school) What do you know about bad words?
Preston: I know one, want to hear it?
Me: (unsure if I should agree to this...) ummmm, okay, tell me.
Preston: Dumb. That's a really bad word.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011


Preston: ...and Archie is going to be a crocodile... (for Halloween)
Archer: No, I'll be an Archie-dile!

Thursday, September 29, 2011

Fall Funk

I just can't seem to motivate myself to blog.  I don't know why.  A Fall Funk, I guess.  I have a billion things to do, and yet I don't get anything accomplished.  So, anyway, to get me started again, here are pictures of some of the beautiful artwork my boys have been bringing home from school:
Preston's fireman hat
Bryton's apple (finger painted)...notice him in the background?  He refused to hold it for me to take a picture.  Little stinker.
Preston: Boys vs. Girls...hmmm...looks like Mommy is pretty outnumbered!
Family picture by Preston.  Daddy is to the left with the long legs, Mommy is next, then Preston on the top right.  Archer is the bottom left, and Bryton is the bottom right.  I LOVE drawings at this age.  It is just so cute!
This week B is learning about the letter "D" and one of the things they learned about is DINOSAURS.  B LOVES dinos, and I'm pretty sure this week was his favorite so far.  This is his dinosaur hat...he was so excited that they got to go into Preston's classroom and ROAR at the class.  And he even cooperated by reenacting a ROAR for me!
Dino egg!

Friday, September 23, 2011

This is what happens...

...when you wake up at 4:30 am two days in a row.  I was REALLY hoping he could make it to nap time but obviously that didn't happen.  Instead, he took a 30 minute catnap and probably thinks he is done napping for the day.  I'm sooooo hoping that is NOT the case, since I've been up since 4:30 as well (both days).

Zonked (and he still sleeps with his little behind in the air!)

Wednesday, September 21, 2011


I was lamenting the fact that my tomatoes are taking their own sweet time ripening.  My garden has TONS of tomatoes, but they are in varying stages of ripeness, and the ripe ones start to get overripe before I have enough to can.  Anyway, I dried some a little while ago (in slices), but yesterday I decided to do a little bit of experimenting.  First, I sliced the tomatoes thinly and dehydrated them at 135 degrees until they were crispy (it took about 15 hours for most of them).  Next I stuck them in my vitamix on low speed until they were all chopped up.  Since I use my crockpot so often, my plan is to just throw them in with a little extra water in place of diced tomatoes.  The little tiny jar on the left was quite a few tomatoes...I'm guessing about 10 big dehydrator trays full!  I love that it takes up so little space in my already crowded pantry.  The jar on the right is actually tomato sauce that I made "tomato leather" out of, dried it until it was crispy, and chopped it in the vitamix.  It started out as about 2 cups of sauce, and is now probably only 1/2 cup or so!
So, even though I've been complaining about the lack of tomatoes to can, I'm actually not sure that I'll be canning them anyway!  I may have found my new tomato preservation method.  MUCH easier than canning, less time consuming (well, as far as active time), and less storage space.  What's not to love?! 

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Blast from the Past

I stumbled upon an old Polaroid picture this weekend as I was clearing out some clutter.  This was taken almost exactly 12 years ago at a '70's dance in college.  (Wait, now that I think about it, it might not have been called a "dance" given that we went to a Quaker school...'70's party maybe?  Or was it a rebellious "dance"?)  Anyway, I thought this guy was pretty good must have been the outfit.
1999 - YIKES!

Friday, September 16, 2011

Archie's First Urgent Care Trip

Is that worthy of a blog post?  Such a monumental milestone.

I was making lunch and John was upstairs when we noticed that Archer was missing.  He thinks it's really funny to hide from us, but we were calling him and still no Archie.  John finally found him on top of my sewing table, with a pin in his mouth.  (Side note: usually we have this door shut with a child lock on it so he can't get in, but apparently it was either left open or he figured out how to open the child lock.  He must have thought he hit the jackpot.)  Archer claimed he had swallowed another pin and it was in his tummy.  We were both pretty skeptical of this, but he was CHEWING on the other pin so you never know...and it's not really something we wanted to take a chance on, obviously. 

Anyway, thankfully the urgent care trip was uneventful & the x-ray was all clear.  And Archer got to experience the excitement of a glove balloon.

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Catch-up Post

Why is it that I have less time with 2 kids in school?  I'm completely baffled.  And still REALLY not liking the fact that we all have to get out of here in the morning.  Then I drop the big boys off and either (1) rush home to try to get a little frantic cleaning and/or cooking done or (2) tackle the grocery store with only one kid.  (Okay, okay, we've fit a few little play-dates for Archer in there too...the kid is feeling deprived!) 
The other day I made up 10 crock-pot vegetarian freezer meals, which was a HUGE accomplishment for me to get done in 3 hrs, with Archer around.  He was not thrilled with the whole process, and by the time I had to leave to pick up the big boys I was COMPLETELY exhausted.  By 11:30 am. 
And speaking of Archer...we've had complete potty-training regression.  Not that he had progressed that far in the first place, but towards the beginning & middle of August he was showing a lot of interest and taking the initiative to use the toilet.  Now he's gone back to diapers 100%. 
Preston has his first field trip today, to the fire station.  Last night I completely panicked when I realized that I was either going to have to (1) entrust someone else to install his car seat in their vehicle or (2) buy him a big kid high back booster seat.  I think this is something I blogged about on my past blog, but I am kind of "particular" about car seats.  Preston is still in a 5-point harness and will be for the foreseeable future.  Normally, I had planned to drive on field trips, but Bryton & Archer have been sick this week so I decided it probably wasn't a good idea.  (Which is good because now I think I'm coming down with it!)  ANYWAY...we went with the booster, since I decided it was probably the safer option than having an improperly installed car seat.  I'm nervous about it, but Preston is a bit of a safety nut so I think it will be okay.  He took his test ride in it pretty seriously, so hopefully that continues today!  (And yes, I totally obsess about these things!  I was driving John crazy last night.)
Bryton is still loving school.  He did have to miss a day of school this week, but he's going back today.  His teacher always has such good things to say about him..."he's such a helper" "he's so sweet" "I just love him!" etc.  I'm glad that his personality is really coming out at school.  He tends to get pretty shy when he gets overwhelmed, but he's really starting to get over that and has even stopped being clingy when I drop him off.  It is so nice that he only has 10 kids in his class.  It makes me so much more comfortable leaving him somewhere that I know he won't get lost in the shuffle.
And my other baby, the garden.  :)  The weather is starting to get a little cooler here, and I still have gobs of green tomatoes on my plants!  Yikes.  We are still getting a few green beans but they are definitely dying down.  I really, REALLY need the tomatoes to ripen up so I have enough to can some tomato sauce!  Just a little more warm weather...PLEASE!  We also have some apples on our trees and 1 lonely Asian Pear.  My pomegranate is still flowering like crazy, but they aren't turning into fruit.  Sad, but it's young so I didn't really expect any fruit yet.

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Birthday Pictures!

Birthday Celebration while camping...we forgot the candles so the kids held up their fingers for B to blow out.  Kids are so inventive! (B had his face painted as a "blue lion" in case you were wondering.)
He had a couple more presents to open on his real birthday, but none compared to his guitar.
Reading Clifford...
...while Archer took advantage of the time to play with the new legos!

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