"experience is what you get when you didn't get what you wanted." -randy pausch

Saturday, February 21, 2015

i didn't even have to bend over once:)

and i didn't even have to bend over ONCE to get the laundry out of the dryer.
god bless chase ray. 

{i promise you, there's four completely DIFFERENT pictures here. i tell no lies.}

Friday, February 20, 2015

years old that is {watership down and chapter 2}

it's so different at 32 than it was at 25.
years old i mean.
like, for once, i'm not in a rush to not be pregnant,
even though my varicose veins are A MESS.
reeeeaaaaalllly a mess.
and there's for sure another 8 pounds of baby that's gonna be weighed onto those already overly stressed veins, plus whatever i'm eating in chocolate peanut butter tillamook ice cream several times a week,
but it doesn't really matter.
the pain.
i don't know why.
i just know it's not as big of a deal as it used to be, even though they're worse this time than any other.
maybe that's just the compression tights talking.
it's probably just the 23 weeks talking.
i'm just saying that i think after 4 times of this rodeo,
i've finally figured out how to enjoy the getting there.
because i know that once we're there,
it will all be different again.
and i will miss the way icy cold juice tastes,
and the way food just caaaaaaallllls to me.
like bacon.
and the other day when neil was eating my pepperoni pizza and breadsticks on the back patio, enjoying this unseasonably warm february NOT WINTER weather,
he was all, "the best time in your life is right now."
and i was like, "that's what they tell me. when you're kids are young, enjoy it. i'm loving it!"
and he was all, "no, what i'm saaaaaying is, IS that the BEST time in your life is RIGHT NOW. no matter what stage you're in. THIS time right now is the best time in your life, and THIS time in my life is the best time of my life, just like it was when i was in your phase of life when IT was the best time of my life. cathy and i have no schedule, no one to take care of, nowhere to be, except walking the new puppy and playing with the grandkids, and it's THE BEST! but when we were young bucks, raising all of our little kids, THAT was the best time of our life. the time you're IN, the exact time you're IN that very moment, that's always the best time of your life right then."
and it's not like they've had a perfect life their entire life or anything like that.
it's just that they "get it."
life, you know.
and i sat there with the vitamin D soaking into my face thinking about that while i ate the strawberries chase left on his lunch plate, and i realized how genius it was.
and so cliche. 
but i'd just never really thought it about like he explained it.
even though i've heard it a thousand times in a different, but same way before.
no time like the present.
there's no time like the present!
now this is where you tune out and roll your eyes, "like here she goes all joy in the journey on me."
but that's not what i'm saying.
and please something take that tile down from my kitchen counter anyway.
what i'm saying is that the summer before senior year i had to read watership down for AP english.
i HATED watership down.
i also wasn't fond of AP english, but that's another story.
i still get anxiety thinking about that book and the talking bunnies.
that book that felt like 1000 pages of TALKING BUNNIES.
it was NOT my jam.
and so when i was on page 63, and chapter 1 still wasn't going to be over until page 103 {hypothetically, are you with me???},
i'd sit there and read a page and go "only 40 more pages until chapter 2...only 39 more pages until chapter 2...only 38 more pages until chapter 2..."
all the way to chapter two.
and then finally i'd get to chapter 2, and the entire thing started over for chapter 3.
just get through it so you can be done.
and so many times in my life i feel like i've had those moments.
just get through it so you can be done.
count down.
and as long as you KNOW it's the best time of your life while your'e in it,
that's the gift.
just BEING on page 63.
even though chapter 2 isn't until page 103.
and there's a lot of work and time and patience required in getting to chapter 2 on page 103.
but you'll never be on page 63 again.
you'll never read it that same way ever again,
even if you read the book again.
so i guess what i'm saying is that i feel this shift deep down inside of me.
like i'm learning to appreciate the good in all of my seasons.
even the ones that aren't my favorite.
like sean working saturdays,
and chase pooping in his underwear,
and max scratching people's faces,
because page 63 might be filled with poop and exhaustion,
but it's also filled with almost 3 year olds that want to sit on my lap just to be held,
and almost 7 year olds that tell you you're the most perfect morning waker-upper ever because you knew they were at the end of their sweetest dream and now can you make them pancakes please?
and 5 year olds that play barbies on the front window seat in the 5 o'clock sun with you.
and those parts of "page 63" make the getting to "page 103" so much more amazing.
because anything bad along the way is just different.
it can be good and it can be bad,
but whatever you're doing and whatever phase you're in CAN be the best time in your life.
if you will just let it be.
in the face of the things that aren't perfect while you're in it.
i can't tell you how many times i've looked back on the time when i was pregnant with maxine,
with brennan being one.
and i was SO excited to have another baby.
to do it all again.
especially to be having a girl! and it made me feel so girly,
and i was in SUCH a rush to finally be a mom with two kids
that i think i missed brennan being one for a little bit at the end there.
and then when i was pregnant with chase, i was just sooooo not wanting to be pregnant because i was soooo consumed with the pain of my varicose veins, and the weight of carrying that giant baby up and down all of the stairs in our house in my tummy that i just wanted him out 
and here so we could get on with things.
and i could tackle this three kid business that everyone wouldn't stop talking about.
sure i enjoyed brennan and max during that time,
but not like now.
i feel like i'm savoring every day with my family just as it is right now.
because i know that in some 16 or 17 weeks that this time in my life with almost 7 year old brennan, 5 year old max, and almost 3 year old chase will be over.
and a new and different time will begin.
the good, the difficult, the new, the familiar, all of it.
but it's like i don't have anything to prove or get through for once.
because i'm just being.
being on "page 63."
and just like i yearn to go back and live one day with one year old brennan,
watching the hills on my recorded VHS tapes,
and eating lunch in a quiet house with a napping little one year old boy and max in my belly,
and just like i wish i could go back to holding baby maxine at 3 days old,
and going to the children's museum with 3 year old brennan and 1 year old max, and chase in my belly,
i know this time that i'll treasure these days just like those,
the time where i got brennan off to school in the morning, made his lunch, cooked him breakfast, put on his socks and tied his shoes without any other stresses than trying to do it all before susie shows up for morning carpool,
the time where max shows up at the top of the stairs with her beaming bright eyed smile that lights up the entire house with sean getting in the shower for work,
and at some point the creek of chase's door signaling us that someone needs to run up and help him go pee, and then gosh darn it and for heaven's sake somebody have his milk ready for him.
so right now, i'm taking the time to treasure them. 
right now as they are.
almost 7, 5, and almost 3.
not worrying about how long it will take the finish the basement,
but enjoying that it's just going on.
and the life that all of it brings to this amazing little house we are living in.
which is something i just don't know if i've done like i am doing right now.
maybe it's that i'm 32 and not 25.
years old that is.

Thursday, February 19, 2015

when it snowed and we were dressed for NOT winter

look at 
their faces though.
go back and look again.
it just gets funnier and funnier every time.
in fact, i might have to even get up to go pee and come back again.
just to be safe.
and then it started snowing.
like some FREAK blizzard out of nowhere that lasted for 10 minutes.
and we were freezing!!!
in fact, everyone around us was freezing.
nobody in the entire zoo had coats.
there were little girls sharing their dad's coats,
huddled together like the bats in the snake house.
it was insane.
and all of us utahans that left the house with our thermostats reading 62* were looking at each other like "what the??!!" but no one was judging anybody else because NOBODY was dressed for it.
like we were thinking it was spring or something,
and not february.
especially brennan in his shorts,
max with no big coat {the girl who's lips turn purple below 70*},
chase with bright red, numb fingers and cheeks, and nose,
and me with no socks on.
we've never left the zoo so fast in our entire lives.
which was great because i couldn't push that double bob with three kids riding in it up one more hill.
nobody EVEN wanted to ride the train.
everybody always wants to ride the train.
but even chase was all, "forget the train!!!!!"
and i was thinking about all those pioneers that pushed their handcarts across the plains without cars and coats and northface and stuff,
and let me tell you, that 80* heater setting has never felt so good blasting through the vents of our car EVER like it did that day.
except chase cried all the way home because i don't think his hands thawed out until we pulled into the driveway.
so my nerves were shot.
which worked out great for the kids,
because it meant that they got to watch sesame street and have any treat they wanted WITH lunch,
like they didn't even have to wait until they ate all their lunch to have their treat,
because i was just so desperate to have them all be completely and utterly quiet.
it our wonderfully warm house.

Wednesday, February 18, 2015

the army hat he found underneath his bed

"mom look, now i'm JUST like uncle shawn." -brennan
"now take some more with my serious face and army stance."
"there, now let me see the pics."
"OH MY GOSH, yes! now send these to uncle shawn. he's gonna LOVE this."
and while walking away back to his room, i heard him say to himself,
"i can't believe i look JUST like uncle shawn."

Sunday, February 15, 2015

letters to Beth {you're amazing, operation COLD BIDET, max turns 5, & basement}

dearest beth,
well, i'm just gonna say it. you are the most amazing woman on the entire planet. there. it didn't even need to be said, because it just is. now i will list the reasons why beth is amazing:
#1- kindest heart
#2- patient and long suffering
#3- ability to see beauty all around
#4- finds wisdom in everything, lots of times in movie quotes {let's watch count of monte cristco this summer together}
#5- your energy and will to love and nurture is never ending
#6- most beautiful painter/artist/creative person alive
#7- beautiful INSIDE and OUT. like REALLY.
#8- your laugh, your smile, your eyes!
#9- you go with the flow
#10- honesty, authenticity

listening to your feelings about smith and how you came together closer through his last accident really hit home for me. being a mom is all about relationships, and i feel BLESSED to watch yours grow with your children. like the i feel rich beyond measure JUST to watch your spirit grow and to be around you in this journey of young motherhood together. to be in your presence {see above list}. your laughing and you're shaking your head right now, i know this {see above list}. really.

oh the woes of potty training! let it be said, chase is the perfect pee-er, BUT after two days of knowing how to poop and pee on the potty two weeks ago, he has NOW decided that it was just taking up too much of his time, and he'd rather just go play cars and poop in his underwear again in whatever spot he is currently residing. the man will NOT pee his pants, but he makes up for it in poo. i feel like i'm smelling poo everywhere. i turn a corner. POOP. i go upstairs. POOP. i walk outside. POOP. there doesn't even need to be any poop for me to smell POOP at this point because i think its fragrance has just parked a spot in my nostrils. it's around that much. i smell it, and i just start sniffing it out and making everyone paranoid around me that they've stepped in something. so yesterday i realized that i've made his pooping too enjoyable, or at least this is what my current theory is, because when he poops in his pants i tell him "oops, remember, we poop in the potty now" {very patient and kind like of course}, and then i wipe his little bum with a wet wipe, and he goes along on his merry way. AND THAT'S when it hit me. his poop life is too good. i wouldn't want to poop in the potty if i were him either, you know when his mom's there to clean him up and be all nice about it. so yesterday after the third poop in his pants, i said very kind and nice like that we needed to wash him off in the bathtub...and instead of warm water, i turned that faucet to cold and put it on the power wash setting {it's not really that hard, but that's just the best way to describe it, think more of massage setting. that sounds nicer}, and then i bidet washed his little bum all completely out with not warm water. he giggled and laughed and thought it was pretty funny {he is the comedian of the family, and all is hilarious to him JUST LIKE SEAN--he also laughs and thinks it's funny when he poops in his pants. this is frustrating to me.}, but when he got out he looked me straight in the eyes and said "i no like dat. i poop in potty." operation cold bidet has been going now for almost a week, and it doesn't appear that any behavior has been changed, so now i'm brainstorming over sticker charts and $50 buzz lightyear toys as bribery. i reeeeeealllly don't want to spend $50 though, and a sticker chart just seems like so much effort. probably less than operation cold shower bidet, and probably less than cleaning poop out of his underpants for the next 5 years. i will report my findings to you the minute i get this figured out, but let's not hold our breath...this MUST be the universe letting me know that i'm really not that awesome. thank you humility, i'm so glad you're back.

max turned 5 last weekend. it was a grand old time. she planned the entire day herself. first she wanted cinnamon rolls for breakfast, then she wanted to skip brennan's basketball game so she could stay home and "receive her birthday calls" {LOL--she "gets it"}, then she wanted to take hannah banana to chic-fil-A, then get manicures {i took them to a spa down the street--it was ADORABLE and less than a movie ticket, popcorn, and drink--WIN}, and THEN go on a hike. now you'd think that going on a hike on feb 7th in utah wouldn't work, but it was 70* outside that day because the farmer's almanac was on point with their "warm winter" prediction this year, and so they had the best time. sean took the two girls by themselves up the mountains in draper, and the temple was behind them in a few of the pictures. they had their little gatorades {which max calls "al-i-gade"} and their nutrigrain bars--so cute. she chipped a nail while on her hike, and came home and told me "next time, i think we should do the hike BEFORE the manicures." love that little max and her thoughts. smart girl i tell ya. then i hosted the entire family, cousins, grandparents, and all, for crockpot soups and my homemade breadsticks for dinner, with a FROZEN cupcake spread, designed by my friend tenille with all of the frozen characters on top. max told me it was the best day of her entire life, and i now have two new crockpot soup recipes my mouth is STILL lusting over: cheddar broccoli--it had heavy cream and evaporated milk, and then the chicken fajita something or other soup which took all of 5 minutes to prep and had about 5 toppings that took it over the top {avocados, tortilla strips, shredded cheese, cilantro, and sour cream--mmm, come to mama}. i'm making that one again this week.
the basement building has officially COMMENCED! i can't tell you how surreal it is. for so long i wondered if we'd ever even actually DO it, and here it is coming to reality. contractor dave and neil {stacie hansen's dad--he's helping contractor dave, and he's basically amazing, AMAZE-ing to offer his help, i just love having them both around.}. So this last week they framed almost the entire basement. they have the bathroom and half of the family/guest/entertainment room {when you have less than 600 feet, your exercise room, guest room, and movie room are all in the same 200 sq feet {if that} room. it's grand! multi-functionality at it's FINEST!} left to do and then all of the electrical and plumbing work begins, which contractor dave is also licensed to do. i can't say it enough how much i love these two men! we will all be so sad when their work is done, and they won't be coming every day to our home. they are even helping in operation potty training with chase. there is nothing more adorable than grown men talking about poo-poo-ing in the potty with an almost 3 year old, bribing him with ice cream they will buy him if he will just go. it's like chase has this entire little cheerleading squad, except they hold power saws, nail guns, and turn compressors on and off all day, which they let chase come down and watch them do, while he sits in the byu lawn chair. they let the kids draw on the cement walls during framing. dave drew a car with flames for chase, and then let him scribble all over it to make it his own, and max wrote her name and drew a heart. i can't remember what brennan drew because he came home from school in a really bad mood that day and was all grumpy about it, so i let the men handle it and i stayed upstairs and went through his school binder instead. at lunch time i make everyone lunch, and the men come up from the basement to eat with us. i've been making everything from chicken Cesar salad wraps, to tuna melts, to good ol' PB&J's, and this week i bought everything for BLT's. contractor dave sings kareoke to country music all day long and asks neil if he'll two step with him, and neil tells dave he's messing around too much, and "NOOOO!!! he can't two step with him because he's too old, and he'd better get to work because he's missing his nap time." they are like a little old married couple and it's hilarious. i laugh all day long, and adore them. i really feel like we are spoiled beyond measure to have been blessed with such a great crew. there's nothing more important than being comfortable with people who are working in your home, and we have hit the jackpot.
i've got this little baby bump that is finally noticeable, but i can tell that people are still scared to ask me if i'm pregnant. pregnancy fashion has changed since being pregnant with chase. loose is in. the days of skin tight belly is not all the way out because that round little ball will always be beautiful, but flow-ie shirts to where you have to use your hands and arms to show off your bump is definitely the up and coming, with some little leggings to show off your lady curves below. i am LOVING it. i've never been so comfortable! i have yet to figure out what i'm going to do with myself once it really starts to warm up {like 80's and 90's} because #1-i've never been 9 months pregnant in the summer--feb, march, and april babies}, and #2-i'll be wearing compression tights 9 months pregnant in the beginning of summer, so shorts are out {just imagine what shorts and compression tights would look like}, which isn't too much of a travesty because shorts are sometimes just as hot at pants anyway. so, i figure maxi skirts and me, we will be best friends, and it will be the best of relationships until mid-june when hopefully my compression tights will be coming off for good:).
so that my friend is what's happening around here, along with 60* almost every day in february. it's the weirdest weirdest weather, and i'm loving it. spring came early, or winter never came. either way that groundhog was wrong about 6 more weeks of winter. at least on the western side of the country that is. everything is budding and getting ready to blossom, people tulips are popping up, and all of this has me worried about not having any peaches on my tree at the end of summer because it will surely freeze again, and all of the flower blossoms will be gone with it. oh we shall see what mother nature has in store i guess and be glad that our life won't suffer any from any of it, except maybe making our purses a little bit lighter due to buying our produce from out of state. first world problems, i tell ya.
{the kale we were too lazy to pull out in the fall that came back to life 
in this spring weather, and is producing again. i can't believe it. did you know kale did that???}
you won't believe my little german speaker! he's really starting to take off. he and bear will be gabbing it up this summer for sure. i hope this letter finds you well, and i hope that bear poops on the potty for you better than chase poops on the potty for me, which would be zero pooping on the potty for me. there's nothing more disruptive to a day than potty training that just won't end. this i know to be true.

all my love and well wishes,