Friday, May 17, 2013

April Recap

April was a fun month.  Toward the middle of the month, I finally started feeling better, pregnancy wise.  The daily puking subsided (thank goodness) and food started tasting better again (finally).  It's amazing how almost 12 weeks of feeling like death can make a girl crazy.  February and March were long, dark months for me- I spent most every day horizontal and barely moving, except when necessary (which is a lot with 4 kids to look after).  April was a nice breath of fresh air!

The beginning of the month was spent with our visitors- my sister and her adorable boys and my mom. They were here for Easter and then the first week of April.  I love when my mom and sister come.  We have lots of fun, even if it's staying home all day in our comfy clothes doing nothing but chasing kids and chit chatting.  We always find time to do a little shopping, and of course some good eating.  My sister is a fantastic cook and cooked dinner for all of us multiple times during the week.  It was so, so good.  I'm so glad for any excuse not to cook when I'm pregnant.  Well, let's be honest... I'm always glad for any excuse not to cook ever! :)

For Family Home Evening the day after Easter, we played "Twister" for our activity- the kids got the game for Easter.  It was a big hit and hilarious to watch.

Ben was pretty good too!

Unfortunately, there were some tears when people fell and were "out." 

My kids had the best week with my sister's kids.  Carter is just younger than Mitchell and the two boys get along great, but Carter is also so, so sweet with the twins.  He can't tell them apart and is often heard just calling "Hey Leah-Lexi, come here!"  Or my favorite, "Hey twins!  Come here!"  These 3 accompanied me to Mitchell's baseball practice one night and were so sweet together.

One of my favorite things is seeing Mitchell with cousin Jackson.  Jackson is Mitchell's mini-me and loves, loves Mitchell.  He calls him "Mikel," which is really funny because when Mitchell was 2 and just getting the hang of talking, he called himself "Mikel" and we thought it was so cute.  Jackson loves to yell out "MIKEL!" anytime Mitch enters a room.  Both boys are obsessed with the iPad and spent lots of time doing that together that week.  Playing with Jackson for the last 2 years has really fostered Mitch's desire to have a little brother.

Sadly, our visitors had to leave.  Mitch and Carter hugged it out before they left.

Mitchell also needed a hug from sweet Jackson baby.  I love seeing these 2 cute redheads together.

An hour or so after my family left, they realized that Carter had left his favorite stuffed animal, "Monkey" at our house.  They were too far out to come back for him and Carter was devastated.  We found monkey and went to the post office and mailed him to Carter within a few hours.

The second week of April was Spring Break for my school aged kids.  With Chloe and Mitchell currently going to different school districts, I was glad that their Spring Breaks fell on the same week.

We didn't have anything planned until a friend invited us to go to the zoo with her and her kids.  We jumped at the chance!

The twins were rocking the piggy tails and new pink headbands for the zoo.  I can't get enough of these sweet girls.

My kids really like the tiger exhibit and we walked by just in time for feeding time.

The whole crew- 7 sweet kids.

They have a fun kid's play place at the zoo that we enjoyed after walking through the zoo.

We recently found a really great trail by our house that cuts back away from all traffic.  It's a beautiful little walk and later that week we decided to go for a walk mid-morning.

The end of the trail is pretty close to a small park, so of course we had to stop and play for awhile.

On the way back home, Chloe took the little's for a jog.  She's such a good big sister.

The next day, Saturday, was softball game day for Chloe.  Her games are at 9:00 a.m. and we got a late start that morning and were rushing to get out of the house.  In our haste, we failed to bring adequate coats for our children.  It was FREEZING that day- the temperature was in the 40's and it was very windy.  Ben and I were only in sweatshirts, the twins in light weight jackets, and Mitch had escaped the house with no jacket at all.  Within in minutes, we were all miserable. 

Chloe had brought herself a jacket and we snagged it from her for Mitchell.  Mitch was more than happy to wear the pink jacket, until I took a picture of him.  Then he wasn't so happy about it.

It didn't take long for us to head to the van to watch the remainder of the game from there.

Mitch was convinced that after just a few minutes that it had surely warmed up outside.  We warned him that it was still going to be freezing, but he didn't care.  He braved the cold and to prove us wrong, sat on a little bench with no coat on for quite some time.  It was hilarious.

The next week, Chloe's new glasses that we had ordered came in and we went and picked them up.  What a beautiful, grown up girl I have.

The next weekend, we had some updated pictures taken of Chloe.  Isn't she a beauty?

These are just a few of my favorites.

Spring Break was nice for a break in our schedule, but I was ready for the kids to be back in school.

The little's and I went to Wal-Mart one day while the big kids were at school and they really wanted to ride this bullet bike toy as we walked out.  I never let my kids get on these toys because then they never want to get off, but I was feeling nice that day and let them hop on for a minute.  I'm not even sure they realize it's a ride and needs money to move, but they didn't care.  They loved "riding" that thing.

On the 24th was my BIG birthday- I turned 29.  That's BIG because this is my last year in my 20's.  29 is the age everyone says they are (29+) when they get old.  I'm not sure how to feel about this age.  I have had such a great 20's experience- all of my kids have and will have been born in this decade, and so many great things have happened.  I will miss this decade in my life, but look forward to the next decade, even if I will be old. :)  And yes- that is the BEST chocolate cake in the world. So, so good and so, so fattening.  The scale at the end of the week did nothing to boost my ego...

Mitch said to me on my birthday, "You're double in charge today.  It's your birthday AND you're the mom."  Exactly!  He is also obsessed with numbers and keeps close track of my and Ben's ages.  He was thrilled to figure out, all by himself, that I went from 28 to 29 years old.  And he doesn't forget.

The kids and me with my birthday gift from Ben.  We have always wanted a picture of Christ in our home- a big one, and we finally did it.  We loved this one when we first saw it and since it's not one of the well known Christ paintings, we were even more drawn to it.  It was titled "Men of Galilee."  It is Christ with 2 boys, sitting on the shore watching boats and fisherman in the Sea of Galilee.  It's message is that Christ is the ultimate role model for boys (and all of us) in this world where fewer men are stepping up to be good examples for their sons.  Christ is the perfect example for all of us in all things and I always want my kids to follow His example in everything.  I loved it because Ben loves water, boats and especially fishing, and my children are becoming fast lovers of all of that as well.  And the painting is just gorgeous.

We got it hung later that night in our "reverent room."  

The next day was a great day- Ben took the day off to spend me with.  We started the day off by going out to breakfast at the best breakfast place in Auburn- Sun Break Cafe.  We both had omelets, hash browns and banana bread and it was to die for.

We had two cute little tag alongs for the day.

After stuffing ourselves, we spent the rest of the day shopping.  I got some cute shoes and Ben got to go to the church cannery and can some powdered milk.  That man knows how to have fun! :)

The next week, for our Family Home Evening activity, Ben helped the kids plant some vegetables in some planter boxes I received for my birthday from my parents.  Having just moved in a few months ago, our yard is in no shape to plant a bunch of plants, so these planter boxes will have to do for this year.

The kids were so excited to help.

I am so excited to (hopefully) enjoy some green beans, peppers and zucchini later this summer!

The last Saturday in April, I was gone for most of the day at a Relief Society function at church.  Ben had all the kids home and when he is left with the kids for hours, he is Mr. Fun Dad.  He did all sorts of fun things with the kids. The highlight of their day was going fishing at a nearby pond.

Chloe was at a birthday party, but the 3 younger ones were thrilled to be going.  This was Leah and Alexis' first time fishing.

Ben said everyone caught fish- a few each, actually.

The twins were natural fisherman and had a blast.  They could not stop talking about it days.

Mitch Man!

They had such a great time.  Look at all those fish!

April also had some gorgeous weather that we thoroughly enjoyed.  It led into a wonderful beginning of May, which brought some fun and exciting news to our family.  More to come!

Sunday, May 12, 2013

Happy Mother's Day!

What a wonderful Mother's Day it has been.  

 Here are the 4 sweet little people that make this day possible, and make my life so enriched.  (Soon to be 5 little people!  Hurry up September!)

I did have to speak today at church- it was not my most favorite Mother's Day gift ever (woman should really not be asked to speak on Mother's Day), but I survived!  And my week truly was more uplifting as I prepared my remarks on a thought provoking subject: "How to Pray: not my will, but Thine be done."  But my day was much better the minute that talk was over! :)

My sweet baby girls got sick this weekend and Ben stayed home from church with them.  They were very confused as to why they had to stay home, as they felt fine, but they were still a little contagious.

I got to come home and spend time with these fun people.

Ben, the grill master, made a most delicious dinner.  Tri tip steak, mashed potatoes, salad and green beans.  Oh man, was that steak good. 

Later in the afternoon, Chloe enlisted Ben's help to make snickerdoodle cookies for me.  Again, oh so good!

Ben got me a new lens for our camera and had fun trying it out.

My favorite part of the day was reading the notes the big kids made me at church during Primary.  Mitchell's cracked me up, especially his answer to "My mom spends most of her day:"  He put "A nap."  And I'm really glad to know that the best thing I cook is Top Ramen. 

Chloe's was very sweet.  She hit the nail on the head when she answered "My mom is happiest when: We listen."  She's right!

I have had the most wonderful example of being a mom from my own dear mother.  She really is an angel and the most perfect Grandma.  My kids adore her and I adore her.  What a wonderful woman and friend she is.  She is always willing to help me and my family, even from far away.  She remembers every special occasion and holiday in my little family and loves to spend special notes and treats to all of us.  She knows just how to brighten our day.  She is always happy to chit chat on the phone and we can talk for hours.  I love knowing she is just a phone call away and that she always has time for me.

I am also extremely blessed to have the best mother-in-law.  I have a fantastic relationship with my in-laws and I am forever grateful for that.  Vanessa is the sweetest, kindest woman and a true example of service and love.  Being in her presence makes me happy and I am so blessed that my children have a grandmother like her.  I consider her my second mother and a true friend.

Happy Mother's Day!