Thursday, April 30, 2015


Brendan was so proud of himself for teaching his baby sister to count. One of the benefits of having older siblings. They'll have her reading by the time she's 3...

Monday, April 27, 2015

Twelve to Eighteen Months

I'm not sure how much longer she'll actually pose for these pictures. I'll take them as long as I can get them...

Sunday, April 26, 2015

18 months

Happy half birthday to my sweet baby girl. This time goes so quickly. I wish it would stop. She's developing from baby to toddler and shedding those baby-isms as she goes. She no longer wants most of her food cut into small pieces and sometimes only eats it if she's given a fork to do so. She's getting better at mastering the spoon-to-mouth concept and gets quite mad if I try to help her. She loves all things dairy except for milk (she'll eat cottage cheese, all cheeses and yogurt.)

Her vocabulary now includes "bless you" when someone sneezes (or coughs, she can't discern the difference.) It's quite possibly one of the sweetest things you'll ever hear, second only to "I yuv you!" which nearly brought me to tears the first time because I had been working so hard to get her to say it. She's established a long list of new words that make it fun to communicate with her but we sometimes find it difficult to translate a word or two and she ends up repeating it until we think we've got it (bucket, blanket, Brendan and bacon all sound about the same...) She gives great hugs and kisses when we ask for them and when she reaches her arms up and says sweetly "hold you?" or "uppy?" I can't resist.

She's great at emptying things (cupboards, boxes of bandaids, boxes of q-tips, bags of chocolate chips) but not so great at putting them back. She knows when someone is sad or not feeling well and she's learned that giving love can sometimes help. She's a blessing, this girl. She fills our lives with joy.

Sunday, April 19, 2015

Military Ball 2015

Last year we attended what was probably our second military ball since Joe was commissioned in the Army National Guard. The event is held annually but Joe's interest in the event was always something along the lines of "yes, we should probably go, but I really don't want to." And so we never did. Until the military ball came to us. Held at different venues around the state, 2014 was the year it came to Bend. It seemed rather strange not to go... so we went. And we had a great time. It wasn't the good times and dancing that the words "military ball" seem to conjure up. But it was a great chance for me to see the side of Joe's life that I rarely ever get to be involved in. So when the opportunity arose for us to attend this year's ball we obliged. It's a rare occasion that I get to see my handsome husband in his stunning dress uniform. And the higher ranked he gets (promoted to Major last year!) the more "mandatory" these events become. So we went, we drank, we chatted, we ate (and when Joe introduced me to the General as his smokin' hot wife I nearly choked on my drink as I shook the man's hand... lucky for me, he laughed, winked and said "you can call me Clinton.") But the most amazing part of this memorable night was watching the interaction between my husband and each person he came in contact with. It didn't matter the rank... the men he's in charge of, the ones he's been in charge of, the ones he works alongside, and the ones in charge of him... each of them spoke to him with such high regard. Some sang his praises, some congratulated him on his position, some spoke of his amazing potential to do great things. All smiled while saying those things. I spent most of the night beaming with pride. I get to call this man mine.

Rumor has it the ball will be back in Bend next year... I'll jump at the chance to go through all of that again...

Sunday, April 12, 2015

Portland Zoo

The kids had last Thursday and Friday off from school for parent-teacher conferences and, since we got conferences out of the way early this time around, I decided to take the kids to Portland to visit friends and take a trip to the zoo. One of the disadvantages to living in Central Oregon is that we have to drive over 3 hours to Portland for this type of excursion. But what better excuse to also visit good friends? We managed to beat the rain by heading to the zoo relatively early on Friday. The forecast for 65 degrees was slightly off, the clouds and breeze made it feel a bit cooler. Sack lunches of turkey sandwiches on Stephanie's homemade bread, eaten picnic style in a secluded "secret" indoor spot. The kids were grateful for the adventure and everyone had a great time.

Tuesday, April 7, 2015

Easter Beauties

Trying to get a photo of all three of my beautiful children on Easter in their beautiful Easter best was no easy feat. It started out with a little attitude from the tiniest one that looked a little something like this:

And so I settled for this: 

And I was shocked and pleasantly surprised when, after lunch and a nap for Violet, I finally got this: 

Monday, April 6, 2015

Easter Egg Hunt

Our annual Easter Egg hunt on Saturday was another success. Organized by my good friend, Tracey, on a yearly basis for the last 5 years. Our friends Conley and Stephanie and their 4 kids came into town on Thursday and were able to be our guests to the event this year. A fun yet frigid time was had by all as they bundled up and hunted for eggs in the 38 degree weather of sunny Bend, Oregon. Searching for eggs, learning about Jesus and the reason we celebrate, and sharing time with friends.