So Thanksgiving passed without me writing about what I'm grateful for. I think God punished by a series of unfortunate events. We came home Sunday and our internet was somehow disconnected. And it took until today to fix it. And then the window in our car broke, like wouldn't go back up, kind of broke. And of course it stormed really bad and the car got soaked, and the seat heater broke. Aaron has it taped up nice for us now. We'll get it fixed soon. Something else went wrong but I don't remember right now. Also today was laundry day and I didn't do any laundry. Well I did one load. I was so incredibly lazy today. I even took a nap on the recliner while Abigail napped and Olivia watched TV.

It feels so "done" to list all that I'm grateful for. But it must be said. I have the best husband and kids ever. I love them, and feel privileged being the matriarch of this little family. I am also so grateful for my mom and dad, and my Nanny, all my extended family.

It was a good Thanksgiving. The empty seat was obvious and I'm sure felt by all. I miss Poppy a lot still. Getting out the Christmas decorations was kind of hard since pretty much every single thing we have was a gift from him. He got the kids all these singing and light up things. Last year I was joking that my house looked like a senior center or something. Seriously every decoration I have sings. But I'm so grateful to have them. I wish I could tell him that this year Abigail is big enough to enjoy them too, and she laughs and giggles as much as Olivia did last year. And that her favorite is the Christmas tree with Alvin and the chipmunks on it.

And now funny things Olivia says and does

Tonight at dinner - "Okay stinky pants." me - "Did you just call me stinky pants?"
Olivia - "I was trying to say thank you Mommy, but it just came out stinky pants."

"My teddy bear has the flute, Dr. Mommy, he's really sick. He the flute real bad."

"I'm a bad witch, put a spell on me! Spell witch." So I did, w-i-t-c-h, and then she said, "Oh no I'm a statue now! That spell turned me into a statue!" We were laughing so hard... she thinks spells... are spelling... oh cuteness.


Olivia to Abigail, holding hands in the bathtub, "You're my best friend TO EVER!"


An idea

I have this idea for a blog where I update every day with just one sentence. One sentence that pretty much sums up the whole day. But since this blog is primarily to keep in touch with out of state family I think they might be sad if all they got was a single sentence without explanation. But maybe they would like it? Could I limit myself to one sentence really? I mean I'm a babbler really. I love to "hear" myself talk. I don't know if I could do it. But maybe I could, and then I could tell more of the story in the comments or something. Then if you wanted to read it you could read the comments. ? I think about weird things sometimes. I don't always have time to update. Sometimes I don't know if I have anything interesting enough to say. But one picture or one sentence that could just bring me back to the day could be kind of fun. I think I might try it. Alright let's see if I could sum up today in one sentence/phrase it would be:

I love my kids so much I would lay down my life for them, but I live for date nights (especially ones that include hot chocolate and target browsing).


Good book

So I'm reading These is my Words and I can't get these characters out of my head. I find myself thinking in "western". I even said "I'm fixin' for some mighty fine chocolate tonight". I get way to wrapped up in whatever book I'm reading. I may even be referring to Aaron as Captain Elliot in my mind. I think he'd laugh too hard at me if I said it aloud.

Have you heard of this book? It is sooo good. So so good. If you haven't read it, you should go get it and read it. These is my Words by Nancy E. Turner. We read it for book club. And then I didn't read it, but went to book club anyway because I never let ignorance get in the way of a good opinion, and left there needing to read the book. Everyone loved it. We talked on and on about it for a couple hours. And now as I'm reading it I'm kicking myself that I hadn't read it before book club. There is so much I want to talk about. Like did anyone else start thinking in "old western"?

I know the ending also, since we talked about it. And I think I might not finish it. I'm almost done and it's still happy... so I might just stop reading and pretend like I don't know the sad, sad ending. I don't know if I could even bear it now just thinking about it.

It's loosely based on Turner's great-grandmother's journal. She was an early settler of the Arizona Territory. It's a story about her journey on the wagon trails, and her life, and the most beautiful love story. Oh really you have to read it. I've been neglecting my children all day to read a few pages. And I'm blogging now because I know what's coming, and I really am not sure I want to read it. Or that I want it to end. Maybe I'll write my own ending. Oh I'm ridiculous. Okay I'm going to go google now to see if Captain Elliott was real.



Olivia is pretending to be a baby. Crawling on the floor and with a high pitched voice saying "Mama! Mama! Mama!"

Abigail giggled. Then plopped onto the floor and started saying in her high pitched voice, "Mamamamama!" And giggled some more because she was in on the game.

They are crawling around my feet now "pretending" to be babies.

And I wonder... if my babies can pretend to be babies, are they still babies?


Brace yourself

I'm pretty sure this is the funniest picture ever taken of Olivia. I seriously laughed my head off when I loaded these pictures on to my computer. She loooves taking pictures. And I'm probably nuts for letting a 2 year old use a digital camera, but her pictures are so worth the anxiety of her dropping it. Here it is... her very first self portrait. Seriously....

And here are some other "artistic" pictures she took. (Okay they're at the top... and I can't drag them down here for some reason) And I do feel the need to include a cute picture of Olivia to show she doesn't really look anything like this.... but I can't find one. We go to dance class tomorrow so I'll be sure to take a picture then and post it.


Feeling accomplished

Today I woke up and put away the mess from the weekend. Which was immense. Then I dusted every room. Then I scrubbed the entire kitchen. Including walls. And floors. Did every dish. Vacuumed. Fed kids lunch. Put kids down for naps.

And now I'm ready to nap. But I really don't do well with naps. I always wake up more tired. So instead I blog and g-chat. And watch this http://www.byutv.org/watch/175-1401 video. It's kind of long, but worth it if you have some time and watch a spiritual boost.

And a funny Olivia story I forgot to write down. I love eavesdropping when Olivia is playing Barbie's. The other day she had one Barbie in each hand and she was yelling in her Barbie voice, "Aaaron!! AARON! I need you right now! Aaron come here!" Cracked me up. I must say that a lot.

And the drama around here never ends. Abigail has started throwing herself onto the ground and throwing fits when she doesn't get what she wants. And Olivia literally cried today because "the sun is out" and "nobody loves her". Seriously these kids.


I love being a mom. It just needs to be said. Right now Abigail is completely naked, except for a pair of pants on her head. I got about 3 hours of sleep last night. The house is a disaster. I mean, a complete disaster. I wish I had someone here I could dump my kids on for a couple of hours so I could really get on top of things. I miss that about Arizona. But anyway, this post is going to be positive. I am tired, and cranky, and wishing I could be so much better than I am. But I'm happy. I'm really happy. Because I heard, "I love you so much Mommy" like 5 times today.

And no joke, while I typed this Abigail just peed on my lap. Yeah... love being a mom.


It all happened at the zoo.

Today was beautiful. Weather-wise anyway. I went for a run outside. When kids woke up from their naps we went to the Erie Zoo. We decided to get a pass, and I'm glad we did, or else this trip would have been WORTHLESS. So much stuff was closed because they close end of Nov. Animals were gone. It was kind of a disappointing trip. We still had fun though. And then they closed around 5. We headed back to our car. Aaron couldn't find the keys. Panic. Look in car. There they are, sitting on the car seat. Must have been put down to get out babies or whatever (Aaron's fault, just sayin...). Fortunately one quick call to AAA, and a half hour later, we were rescued. Then we came home and I started a small fire on one of the burners on our stove. But dinner was still good.

I am trying to maximize the warm weather. I know it's not going to last much longer. But I just saw the weather forcast and it looks like it's going to be pretty nice next week too. Honestly I am so ready for freezing temps, gray skies and SNOW! I can't wait for it. As long as the weather is nice I feel a real sense of urgency to be outside enjoying it. I can't relax and do anything inside because I just keep thinking, it's nice out!! Must be outside!

Anyway, nothing else too exciting to report. Olivia has been full of funny sayings, but usually by the time I get around to blogging I can't remember any of them. She is starting dance class this week and I am so excited.


Perfect Friday Night

Today we got a wonderful package in the mail from our friends in Arizona. It included chips and salsa from Matta's. I can't believe the chips made it all in one piece. It was so sweet and thoughtful. We were already planning on having tacos, so we had had a Mexican feast. I made mine a Taco Salad. Just the taco meat and salad, homemade guacamole, little bit of cheese... mmmm. The kids ate happily. Our bellies were happy and full. Then we played an Eye Spy board game. Olivia is finally getting the attention span long enough for board games. It was a lot of fun. Abigail cutely copied everything Olivia did. Aaron gave them baths while I cleaned up dinner. Then we put out babies to bed, and are now on the couch watching a movie.

These are times I live for. And tomorrow's high is 60. Trying to think of something fun to do.


Marine Corps Birthday

I used to work at Chili's. One night a table of older ladies came in. They only ordered drinks and appetizers. And by drinks I mean they each had pints of beer, and one had the house wine (which I was instructed to never sell because it tastes like vinegar, but the old lady wanted it even after I told her so). The ladies told me they were all widows. And that all of their husbands were in the Marines. And every year on the Marine Corps birthday they went out and celebrated. They were so sweet. If they didn't come in I would have no idea it was the Marine Corps birthday. So on my way home from work I called Poppy and wished him a happy birthday. He was so surprised that I "remembered". He told me that every year he would get tons of phone calls on this day from old Marine buddies. As the years went on, and those buddies passed away, those phone calls were less and less. The year that those ladies came in, I was the only phone call. And somehow every year since, something has happened to remind me on that very day that it was the Marine Corps birthday. And every year I would call him. I never ever remembered on my own. Something would always randomly happen that would let me know all over again. Every year I'd call and wish him a happy birthday. Apparently this year is no different. Someone's facebook status was a happy birthday USMC.

Gosh I still miss him so much. Excuse me while I go cry a few tears and say a few prayers.


Just love

It's not his birthday or our anniversary, I just wanted to blog about this guy. He is currently upstairs trying to get our restless babies to rest. He is my greatest supporter. I feel so lucky to be parenting with him. Last night he was reading me my email about Super Saturday today. Convo went something like this:

Pumpkin roll class at 11:30.
Ooohhh I hafta be there.
Why? You already know how to make the best pumpkin roll ever.
No I don't. I've never made a pumpkin roll in my life.
But you know how. You just go on allrecipes.com, search for best pumpkin roll recipe, read the recipe and every single review and note. Then make your own alterations. Then you make the best tasting thing in the world. That's how you roll, pumpkin.

Yeah, he knows me. And he makes me laugh. Every day. I'm a lucky girl.


This ONE!

From day one...

To one year!

(And yes there's a huge gap in photos from about 3 - 11 months. They exist! Just not on this computer)