Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Memorial Day

We were lucky enough to spend a couple hours with Dan's family this memorial day.
We headed to a nearby(awesome) park to hang out and eat dinner.
My Jace Man would not leave the big boys alone on the basketball court, and they were so nice to let him play.
It has been fun getting to know Dan's family a little better.  We haven't lived near family in almost 6 years(since we were married) and to meet up at the park for dinner with 2 of his siblings is a real treat!  Especially when Julie brings caramel dipped apples for dessert!

Luckily the weather is starting to warm up and there will be more of these sort of things in the near future.

Sunday, May 29, 2011


I can't even begin to express what a blessing it has been for me to be closer to family.
I have enjoyed being able to hang out and not have the thought of going home looming in the distance.

This weekend my sisters and Kelby came to visit and I had a blast.
No Kelby doesn't always look that funny!  He had just mastered the art of getting an Oreo from his forehead into his mouth with no hands.

Friday, May 20, 2011

Potty Project

Seeing how I've got a bit more free time on my hands, I decided to work on a little project.  The "Potty Project".  It all started Tuesday evening while playing in the garage with the boys.  I saw the moving box labeled, "little potty" and decided it was time to introduce it to Jace. I gave him every drink he could have ever wanted, and lots more.  He sat down(yes in the garage), had success, we sang and danced to the perfect potty song, and the rest is history.

When I potty train my boys I let them run around in the buff for a few days to get the hang of it.  Jace does pretty darn good while in his birthday suit, but has had just a couple accidents when I put him in underwear.
I will admit in moments of frustration I have questioned if he is ready, but I'm certain he gets it and he is proud of his success.  I had him throw his remaining diapers in the "garbage" so that both he and I were on the same page.

For the past couple months I have been telling him if he goes poop on the potty I will buy him a new Astro Boy.  He gets excited every time we talk about it, so I figured I had better not lie.  But because Astro Boy wasn't the most popular movie, memorabilia is hard to come by(especially when operation potty started on a whim).  So that first night I put him to bed I had to think quick and make some tempting Astro Boy "poop on the potty prizes".  Luckily my mom had a stash of iron on transfers and I went to town.

For the first two days he was praised for going pee in the toilet, now it's expected(that sounds mean when I say it out loud).  But poop is another story, we celebrate with prizes(until they run out).

Our first poop was a success!  And with a little encouragement from Camden, his first prize was the Astro Boy gum!

He woke up this morning with dry sheets, so I had hope for today being a good one.  We took our first outing and met Dan for lunch.  He was extremely weirded out by wearing underwear with his pants and kept asking to take them off.  But he did a great job and learned that there are toilets every where you go.  Lucky for everyone...the extra pair of clean undies and pants still remain in the back of the car.

Monday, May 16, 2011

Brotherly Love

I've probably said this before, but I love the bond between my two boys.

I have noticed them enjoying one another more since our move, and I'm grateful for that.

I hope it lasts forever!

Sunday, May 15, 2011

We Can Do Hard Things

The other day we ventured out on the town and found ourselves(ok somebody told Dan about it) the perfect little park.  Not only did this park have the worlds best playground, lots of grass, benches, running trails and squirrels; it also had it's own small hill to climb.

About 20 minutes after getting to the park we decided to climb up this hill.  The boys were squealing with excitement as they ran from the playground to where we would start our hike.  Just about the time Camden started leaning forward putting his hands on his thighs, I too could feel the burn.  Camden kept saying, "this is hard" as he proudly took another step.  The closer we got to the top, the more our feet slipped in the sand.  While Dan carried Jace, I cautiously grabbed Camden's hand the rest of the way up.

Once we made it to the top they both jumped up and down yelling, "WE DID IT".  And I'd be lying if I said I wasn't feeling a little proud myself. 

After spending a couple minutes enjoying our view, we decided it was time to head back down.  Looking down on the path we had just hiked, it seemed to me like a death trap.  That same steep hill we had just climbed, looked like a cliff off the side of a giant mountain.  I had convinced Dan it would be too hard to go down with the boys and we needed to take an easier trail.  Unfortunately there was not another way down.  The trail I thought connected, didn't.  Now how was I to tell Camden we needed to go back down after He had just heard me yelling...I mean....convincing his Dad we couldn't.  My legs were shaking as I tried to be brave, and Camden was crying as he reluctantly followed.

Dan explained to Camden if he held one of my hands, and used his other to hold the rope, we would be fine.  But this time when Camden yelled out, "this is hard", his pride was gone and I could sense his fear.  I found myself telling him(and me), "I know this is hard but we can do hard things".

One shaky little step at a time we made it down.

I may or may not have been fighting back the tears of excitement as we made it to the bottom.  My heart was beaming as big as Camden's smile.  We did it.  We did a hard thing.

So this week as I've had a pity party for myself, it hit me.  Sometimes in life even the most perfect situation can have a small hill(or two or three) thrown in the middle.  But if we just remind ourselves that we can do hard things, we will.  And it feels good to accomplish hard things.

Saturday, May 14, 2011

We're not in Kansas anymore

I never thought moving closer to family would be hard. 

When we moved to Arizona it took me a long time to get adjusted.  It took a long time(the entire time) for me to be able to call it home.  But we did it.  We adjusted, found friends, got jobs, enjoyed serving in church, and had a routine.  Arizona is where Dan and I bought our first home, learned how to live with each other(that is a process, still trying to master it), and where we tried to build a foundation of trust and love in our marriage.  Arizona is where I became a mom, where my kids best friends are, and the only place our family knows as home.  That miserably hot place is where we met some of our dearest friends, and "extended" family, where our favorite youth in the world live, and the only weather our wardrobe supports.

Moving to Idaho has been bitter sweet for me.  I am excited for the job opportunity for Dan, thrilled to be closer to family, but sad to think what we we've left behind.  I adore seeing my kids with their Nanny and Papa, wrestling with Uncle Caleb, and meeting their cousins for the first time.  But my heart shatters into a million pieces when they ask if we can call Sethy and Tessa to come play.  Or when they come home from church and are confused because Kit wasn't in nursery again.  And as silly as it seems, seeing their sandal lines fade tugs at my heart strings.

While being "home" with my kids as I look for a job has been a blessing, it is extremely hard because I have no place to be or no one to see.  I'm trying hard not to wish this time away, or get down on myself for being useless, because I know it will pass quickly.

Idaho is a different place.  A lot different than what we're used to.  But I'm trying to embrace those differences because I know this is where we are supposed to be right now.

So here's to embracing those differences and finding the sweet among the bitter:

We got to make butter for our activity at library story time.

While driving around looking for places to live, Camden suggested we live with the cows and sprinkles(sprinklers watering the farm).  I'm sure it had nothing to do with the fact that all we saw for miles was farmland and livestock.

My kids now know what a llama looks like because we get to pass one every time we "head into town".

On Dan's day off we took the boys to a fun park where they got to feed squirrels salt and vinegar chips right from their hand.

My kids are thrilled every time we look out the back window and see the farmer driving his tractor in the field(the same field they grow corn for Kellogg's Corn Flakes in) 

We stopped for huckleberry sodas at a cute nostalgic soda shop.

A baby birds head is peeking out from the perfectly built nest on the back porch.

I have to admit, I have tried clicking my heels three times hoping to be back home.  But I am grateful for the memories we are making and trying to enjoy this pace of life while it lasts.