time stands still best in moments that look suspiciously like ordinary life - brian andreas

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

dear dawson

Dear Dawson,
Lately I feel like I haven't taken the time to tell you how I feel about you.
Because sometimes life is busy and hectic and passes by too quickly.  

I love laying next to you in bed at night and listening to your soft voice read the words on the pages. 
It is the only time during the day that you are completely focused. 
No jabbering.
No questions. 
Just quiet thoughtful words.

Listening to you play with Harper and Beckham has become a favorite pass time of mine.  You are a wonderful brother. 
Your siblings expect so much from you.  They learned that from me. 
But you always seem to rise to the occasion. 

Don't get me wrong...there are times when you are the copycat, the instigator, the one who makes up stories about monsters under the bed.
And I've never had one, but I hear that's what brothers do.

Since you started school in September, I feel like your innocence is slowly slipping away.
It is heart breaking for a mother.

Sometimes you question boundaries. 
Sometimes you don't watch your words. 
Sometimes you burp the entire alphabet at the table during dinner.

Oftentimes we don't see eye to eye.

But it seems that just when I am feeling frustrated or confused by it all, you slip your tiny hand into mine as we walk into the school.  Or curl up next to me on the couch to watch a movie.  Or request a blue heart-shaped pancake.

And I realize that you are still my sweet little boy. 
One of the only perfect things I've ever done. 

And I hope you realize that I am learning too. 
That I'm nowhere close to perfect.

Sometimes my expectations are too high. 
Sometimes I don't listen enough. 
And I always roll my eyes when you burp the entire alphabet at the table.

But know that no matter what, I will always love you.
I will always be proud of you.
And you will always be my little boy.

December 2012


Tuesday, November 20, 2012


It's almost Thanksgiving so I thought I should document the last holiday.
I'm so prompt.

Halloween was a rush this year...our day was completely packed with festivities.  Which was just fine with wolverine, ninja, and flower fairy. 

Yep, a flower fairy. 
It's a real thing.
Look it up.

We started the day with a spooky breakfast for our 3 little monsters:

in the witches blood were ice cubes filled with
spiders and body parts.

On the menu?

red apple juice, pancakes with chocolate chip eyes and mouth,
apples with peanut butter and almond slivers,
lime yogurt with little bones in them.

The kids all had small parties in their respective school classes that day. 
Harpers class did a parade so all the littles could show off their costumes. 
For some reason, teeny tiny pirates and swarms of little fairies are so much cuter than full sized ones.

The boys loved watching the kids.

And some trivia for you...Did you know that flower fairies are still REALLY sassy?
You might think that some of their fairy sweetness would rub off on even the toughest little girls. 

After the parade we met up with a gaggle of friends and went trick or treating in old downtown Forest Grove. 

viking, knight, wolverine, ninja, owl, flower fairy, fairy.

The shop owners in town were so very generous and the kids loved showing off their costumes.  Plus it was raining the majority of the time, so they got to slop through puddles. 
Which they loved.
I tried to bribe my children to avoid this...:

on our way to trick or treat downtown.
again, taking pictures while driving.
safety first.

...by offering to buy them an entire bag of candy at the store.
They didn't go for it.

After downtown we hit up a trunk or treat.

They were completely exhausted by the end of the day. 
And they got WAY too much candy.

And I've since gained 4 pounds.
Happy (very late) Halloween!!


Sunday, November 18, 2012

a quick painful death

My computer died.
Just shut off right in the middle of a wonderful blog post I had poured my heart and soul into.

That last part was a lie.
But it really did die.
With no warning...

And then I totally freaked out and got all hysterical because I may or may not have been backing it up like I was told over and over and over to do. 
I'm awesome like that. 

Once I stopped hyperventilating and realized that the world was still intact, I took my broken little computer full of baby pictures, papers I've written for classes, and those infamous embarrassing pictures of my spouse to a repair man who was able to work miracles and pull them all off.
Crisis averted.

Luckily I'm getting a new laptop this week, so don't fret about missing my onceamonthpostwhereirambleabouteverythingandnothing.

You're welcome.

In the meantime, I thought I should share a couple craptactular iphone shots from the last few weeks.
Just so you knew I hadn't forgotten about you.
All 14 of you.

You're welcome.

not cheesy at all.
and yes, i'm a pirate.
three tiny people.
anxious to go outside.
sick babies are so sad.
 and also kind of awesome
because of their sudden interest in cuddling.

we had a sunny day this week...holla.
that means picnics and reading outside.

some days are just exhausting.

what will i do when i can't go to the goodwill and
find brand new $30 converse shoes for $5??

my first attempt at pie.
my crust was awful. 
attempt #2.
i ate the entire pan myself.
practice makes perfect...
and makes fat rolls.

how the kids entertain themselves while i am cooking.
laying out 284920 flashcards on the floor.

our new furniture arrangement.
i want something abstract for the bare wall.
because the room isn't random enough as is.

this girl never falls asleep in the car.
and i snap pictures while i'm driving..
.because i'm all about safety.

Happy Thanksgiving week friends.


Monday, November 12, 2012


Our little girl turned five last week.
And I'm feeling old, and a little sad, and a little tiny bit in denial about it.
She is getting SO big.

She requested a date night with both parents.

craptacular picture courtesy of my iphone.

We took her to see a local children's play, Anne of Green Gables.
Dylan and I thought it was ridiculously horrible. 
Think screeching felines in heat.
But Harper loved it.

Puffed sleeves and all.

She also requested a family dinner complete with Lipton noodle soup, mandarin oranges in 'tiny cups,' and bread sticks.
Because we're fancy like that.

She chose to decorate cupcakes in lieu of a cake...


...which was not that surprising because of her love for all things artistic.
And her love of cupcakes.

This has been a big year for Harper. 

She started going to school full-time at an art-based school that she LOVES.  Her teachers told me last week in her conference that she is a 'model student' and is very helpful with the other kids.

She learned all her letters and sounds this last year, due in large part to her amazing preschool teachers. 
She is starting to read simple words and is very excited about it. 
She also can sign all of the letters. 

She enjoys coloring and painting. 
And anything makeup, pink, or sparkly...

princess slippers for her 'how to be a princess' movie

lip gloss
our budding photographer

...oh, and unicorns.

Some things about the birthday girl:
Harper writes with both hands, and hasn't decided yet which she prefers. 
Beautiful long hair is on her wish list.  She has been growing it for 3 years and it is almost to her bum.
Everywhere we go people comment on her beautiful hair and her eyelashes...they're outrageous. 
Consequently, I am jealous of both.

If I had to describe Harper in 5 words they would be:
-short fused (yes, I am aware that is 2 words)

If Dylan had to describe Harper in 5 words they would be:
-sweet (when she is sleeping)

Harper, the day I went into labor with you I took a long walk with Grandma Conklin to get myself ready for your arrival.  It was cool outside and the ground was covered in leaves. 
I stopped every so often and picked up leaves of different shapes and colors along the way. 
Really, I was just filling time until I had you in my arms. 
I still have all those leaves.

october 29 2012

outside our home october 29 2012

And every crisp autumn afternoon, I think about that walk and the moments before you were born.  I think about those beautiful leaves I have, each one different and unique.

behind our house on october 29 2012

Harper, you are a unique little person.
Dad and I have often talked about how your personality was designed just for you. 
You will never be like anyone else. 

Harper, you will likely always be my red headed beauty, strong willed and stubborn.
You will likely be spirited, dancing to the beat of your own drum.

And you will always always be my fancy little girl.

Happy birthday!


Thursday, October 25, 2012

dawsons birthday

guess what?
dawsons birthday was a month ago and i am finally posting about it. 
i'm so on the ball.

better late than never.
at least that is what i am telling myself...to justify not only my tardiness, but the upcoming posts which are also ridiculously fashionably late.

dawson turned six on october 4th. 
he feels so old.
and so do i.

i swear it was just yesterday that i looked like this:

i debated even posting this picture.
because it is so hideous.
and he looked like this:

dawson, 1 week old
and now he looks like this:

dawson, 6 years old

with the kids all being at different schools (on different schedules, with multiple pickup/drop off times...it's awesome.  i'm basically a taxi service), it has given us some time with the kids individually.  we were able to take dawson out for a birthday lunch...he picked taco bell (wth?!) and was thrilled that dylan could meet us.

true to form, dawson had grandiose plans for his big day. 
they included chuck e cheese, a bowling party, and a super hero themed costume party.  he wanted all his favorite friends who have moved (far) away to drive here for the party and he wanted all his cousins in attendance. 
but true to form, he was completely content with hand written cards from his siblings, a crown made by his classmates, and dinner at home with his friend ben.


the crazies...there was LOTS of candy, LOTS of yelling, and LOTS of horn blowing.
it was a mothers dream.
dawson requested spaghetti 'with long noodles,' mashed potatoes, bread sticks, and gatorade.
weirdest meal ever.
and he loved it.

seriously when did he get so big?!
but more importantly, why is he smiling so creepy?

and there was cake. 
and a big wish which included a monster truck (a real one, not a toy), a visit from his friend sophie, and lots of cake. 

it took dawson approximately 16 tries to blow all the candles out.
among other family traits, he has my grandma dorothy's lungs.

dawson has been an absolute dream child.
he is bright, thoughtful, caring, and inquisitive.
he starts talking the moment he wakes up, and doesn't stop until past bedtime.

dawson loves reading.  he just finished a 304 page book and is always requesting more books.
he loves playing with friends, sports, super heroes, and art.
dawson is a good eater but is hesitant to try new things (he is his father's son).
people say he looks just like dylan.   
i don't see it, but i consider it a compliment.

dawson loves harper and beckham and is always the mediator.
he is sensitive.
and kind.

he is silly and laughs quickly.
when i ask him what he wants to be as an adult, he says wolverine.

we love you dawson. 
may you always have grandiose plans for your life, be content with what you have, and may all your biggest wishes come true.