Thursday, December 30, 2010

Christmas preparations

What we've been up to lately...

making a Christmas paper chain

cutting our Christmas tree

decorating the tree

undecorating the tree

making our own spiced nuts and packaging them up for friends

ringing bells in our church's bell choir

listening to over 200 Tubas play Christmas carols at Pioneer Square

making salt dough ornaments

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Monday, December 20, 2010

Happy Birthday!

To the man I love, a wonderful husband and father, a very Happy Birthday! I can't imagine life without you. I'm so glad we're in this together!

Monday, December 13, 2010


Three years have flown by... and now my baby has turned into this little girl....

She is cute, funny, fun, and smart. She is opinionated and can be demanding. She loves reading, doing art projects, playing with Little People, dressing her dolls, jumping off of furniture, and most of all she LOVES music. She amazes me each day and I'm so glad to be her Momma.

Today was a very special day. We started her birthday by going swimming at Mt. Scott. All the grandparents were there, as well as a little friend from church.

In the evening after opening gifts we went to a special place for dinner.
Can you guess where it is?
Did you guess yet? If not, this next picture should give it away...
Elisa chose to go to IKEA for her birthday. And I have to say, it was perfect. So kid-friendly and fun. We ate in the restaurant, and then played in the children's section. Elisa and Jonathan had a heyday! Elisa also chose princess plates and napkins, and chocolate cake.
Happy 3rd birthday my little girl. I love you beyond words.

Friday, November 12, 2010

Elisa's outfit

Elisa is very opinionated about her clothing. I used to be mortified at some of the outfits she put together. Now I'm a little more used to it. This morning was a perfect example. Before I started taking the video she was looking at herself and talking and making faces in the mirror. She does it just for a second in the video too. So funny.

Hiking in the Gorge

Just a couple of pictures from last weekend... hiking with my parents out in the gorge. It was gorgeous!


Leesi is now going on three (just one month until her birthday) and so of course she speaks like a champ. But sometimes the way she pronounces things is still quite funny.
Here are some of my favorites:

hanitizer "I don't need soap, I used hanitizer."
(hand sanitizer)

yittle "I'm yittle pookie, and you are big pookie."

bite-a-wims "Mommy, I want my bite-a-wims!"

monica "I'm just playin' my monica."

wave "I'm going to wave you." (she says, holding up the tape measure)

spoovie "Mommy, please can we have spoovies for breakfast, please?"

Tuesday, November 2, 2010


Halloween was fun this year. I feel like this was the first year that Elisa was really old enough to understand anything that was happening. In the weeks leading up to Halloween I asked her what she wanted to be for "dress-up day" (she has a Pooh book in which Pooh dresses up as a honeybee for "dress-up day", so I figured this would be a good way to refer to Halloween). She told me she wanted to be a block (as in a child's classic letter block). She stuck with this choice every time I asked her about it, until the day that I started cutting up a big box for her costume. Then she decided she'd rather be a puppy (we already had both the puppy and the giraffe costumes thanks to Wanda's garage sale-ing skills). So, on Halloween we dressed up and headed over to the school's carnival. A couple of friends from church, who Elisa just absolutely adores, also came (they are in one of the bottom pictures). After the carnival we did a small amount of trick or treating at some of the school apartments. Elisa told me, "This candy is all for me, Mommy." She repeated this a couple of times. Pretty smart, huh? Or as Greg said last night as he raided her candy stash, "Oh foolish, foolish child."

Perfect Fall

Fall has been amazing here. We've had quite a few perfect sunny days, and the leaves are just gorgeous! Everywhere you look the trees are turning. I love it.

Here's the view out of my window this morning... foggy, but still beautiful. And the second picture is the view out of my window right now... sunny, and the trees are just glowing.

Thursday, October 7, 2010

One year

Last year on this day, we were in the hospital. We weren't quite sure what we were about to get ourselves into. What would life with two kids look like? What would the baby's personality be like? What were we going to name him?!?

Then without much labor or pain, a baby boy came into the world. He kept his eyes tightly shut for days, it seemed... like he wasn't quite sure what he had gotten himself into either. He was a big boy (9lbs. 4oz.) with huge chubby cheeks that made one wonder where his chin had gone. We named him Jonathan. He was God's gracious gift to us. He stayed up at night (even that first night) and slept all day. He wanted to nurse for long periods of time. Elisa got used to sitting beside me on the couch, reading book after book, while Jonathan nursed.

As his little personality started to show, I knew that we had just been given a total sweetheart. He smiled easily and cried rarely. When laid down in his crib, he would just fall asleep, without so much as a whimper. He was such an easy baby.

Now, a whole year has gone by. He is one. He is still a sweetheart. Still falls asleep easily. Still wakes up at night sometimes. Still smiles easily and cries rarely. He loves people... especially those he knows: Elisa, Greg, me, his grandparents.

He is starting to do things that amaze me. I think he might be slightly mechanical/spatial: he tries to build with Elisa's legos (just can't quite get them to stick together like she does); he puts toys away or into other things (the other day took the fridge magnets down and put them into a snack cup). He's very physical: loves to climb (will even climb up the step stool in the bathroom and then onto the precarious ledge of the large rubbermaid container that sits under the sink so that he can reach into the sink); crawls very fast (kind of looks like a bulldog when he's coming towards you); loves to climb stairs and is really trying to figure out how to get down stairs; will climb up the couch and onto the window sill and then stand there banging on the window and "yelling" at people who walk by.

He loves exploring. He's very curious about everything. Whenever the fridge door is open he crawls just as fast as he can to try to get there before it closes again. One time he got there in time to grab a plum and take a huge bite out of it before we could do anything. When the house door is open, he tries to escape. "He's caping, He's caping!" Leesi will yell gleefully whenever this happens. When the bathroom door is open, he loves to open the toilet lid and splash in the water, or climb onto Leesi's little potty and then play with the toilet paper.

A whole year. We've had a whole year with this little guy... and life with him just gets better and better. I am so thankful for him... for his personality, his laughter, his life. I'm thankful that we have a son, and that Elisa has a brother.

Happy Birthday Jonathan! We love you!

Sunday, October 3, 2010

Punkin' Patch

To celebrate Wanda's Birthday we went for a fun excursion to the Pumpkin Patch out at Sauvie's Island. Elisa had a great time walking through the pumpkin patch to try to find the perfect pumpkin. (The one pictured below wasn't the one we ended up with, by the way... the one we ended up with was much bigger). We also saw animals, rode on a hay wagon, bought fresh produce, and had a picnic lunch.

This will definitely be something we do again. What a great fall day!


Happy Birthday (a couple days late) to a wonderful mother-in-law, who also happens to be a great Grammy. Elisa adores her Grammy and worked really hard to make special artwork for her. Of course, it was a team effort. She did all the artwork behind the letters. I was inspired by this blog.

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Grabby Grabbersons

Jonathan is that age where he is interested in the things that others have (now that I stop and think about it, maybe this isn't related to an age... maybe it's just the human condition). And he has the motor skills and the grabbing power to assert his little will. Elisa is constantly in terror that he will take something she is playing with. (Which is funny, considering how often she snatches things that he is playing with, all while saying politely, "Can I have that please, Jonathan?")

She often carries her stroller around as high as her little arms can reach and sets it on high places: the coffee table, the couch, her bed... just so that Jonathan won't grab it. This morning she came out of her bedroom carrying some toy and said, "He was trying to grab this. Isn't him crazy?" It cracked me up to hear her use the word "crazy" referring to her brother. She also regularly asks me, "Is him a Grabbersons?"

Last week we were at a bakery (a vegan bakery, by the way) eating some dessert. Greg was holding Jonathan on his lap and reading some pamphlet (probably about being vegan or something). Next thing we knew, Jonathan had grabbed Greg's plate, pulled it off the table, and dropped it on the floor, where it shattered into tiny pieces.

Yep, him is a Grabbersons.

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

11 months

This little guy is now 11 months old! Just one more month until the big first birthday! I can't believe it. I am already grieving the fact that my baby soon won't really be a baby anymore. I figure as long as he can't walk I can still call him a baby. And of course he'll still be the baby in our family until a younger sibling comes along.

So at 11 months Jonathan is an active crawler. When we set him down downstairs his goal is to make it up the spiral staircase while we're not looking. Yikes! He loves keys, wallets, and cell phones (basically, all the things he's not allowed to have) and he screams like you've broken his little heart if you take any of the aforementioned items away from him. If we accidentally forget to put the lid down on the toilet we'll often find him happily splashing his hands in the water. He also loves crawling under chairs and through the legs of his high chair. He loves his big sister and wants to be involved in everything she does. Sometimes this causes problems, but for the most part Elisa really likes him too. He prefers to feed himself and he loves fruit: melon, peaches, pears, nectarines, bananas. I was having a hard time figuring out what I could feed him that would have protein, then this week we discovered that he loves refried beans (sometimes with avocado mixed in) and little pieces of tuna fish sandwich. He's finally consistently sleeping through the night!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Can you tell I'm excited about this one? It helps that he now has his own room (...I mean closet). So anyway, that's a little snapshot of Jonathan at 11 months. We all love him so much and are so thankful that we get to be a part of his little life!

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Growing up

All of a sudden my kids are so old. I mean really. Elisa has had this huge growth spurt. Even more than the physical growth, she's changed from a toddler to a little girl. It's amazing. Here she is playing with the "big kids" at the family reunion. She was right in the action at the drinking fountain. I couldn't believe it, what happened to my little girl?

And here's Jonathan who still mostly eats baby food, but is starting to be able to chew other things too. He's all about melon. I gave him two huge wedges of watermelon at lunch and before I knew it, they were completely gone. He's really physically active too. I think he's trying to make up for lost time. He was so late in learning to crawl, but once he started he just went wild. Now he pulls up to stand, and walks holding onto furniture. And of course he's still a total smiler.

New Apartment

So we are now living in SE Portland. Once again we're in an apartment in the men's dorm; this time at Warner Pacific College. The living space in the apartment is tiny. Yep, so tiny that it warrants its own font size. The living room is 10x10 and there isn't really a dining room... just a space between the front door and the bathroom door that serves as a hallway and play area and dining area all in one. Needless to say, I needed a small table. I decided a drop leaf table would probably be the way to go. I've always loved drop leaf tables, so this gave me an excuse to buy one. But then my brother said I could borrow one from him. So that's what we were planning on doing... until this morning.

My mom came to stay with me for a few days this week and help out while Greg is away with student leaders on a big backpacking trip. This morning we decided we'd check out the local Habitat for Humanity Restore. It's a store that sells both new and used building materials and some furniture. It's a really great place. Not only does it keep reusable building materials out of the landfill, it also raises money for Habitat for Humanity and provides great deals for... well, me!

So, I'll cut to the chase. There we were at Restore and what do I see but a beautiful drop leaf table! And of course, I just have to check it out. It's solid wood; has an extra leaf; everything is in working order; and the best part is... it's $25. Yes, you see that right: $25.

Well, we take measurements and talk about whether or not it will fit in my dining room (er, my wall) and then whether or not it will fit in the car. We drive back home, measure the wall, and decide to get it. I drive back (without kids and car seats this time). When I get to the store I tell the man that I want to buy the drop leaf table. He asks me how much it is and when I tell him $25 I feel a little bit bad. I kind of wonder if he'll believe me. So I say, "It's a steal." He replies, "Everything here is a steal." It slides like a dream into the back of the Subaru. And now I am the proud owner of this little beauty:

Thursday, August 5, 2010


Greg has a job.

Phew! What a relief!

He will be working at Warner Pacific (a very small Christian University in Portland) as the Area Coordinator or Residence Life Director or some such title... basically doing the same thing he was doing at JBU. We are excited... and most of all, we are relieved. It's good to be done with the waiting. We'll start moving into our new apartment (on campus - in the dorm) sometime this weekend. And Greg just jumps right in and starts work next week.

I'm sure I will have more details soon. But for now... it's just a big sigh of relief.

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Summer Fun

Dad and Jonathan - just chillin'.

Leesi, in constant motion.

Jonathan helps Grandpa celebrate his birthday.

Grandma models the mallard duck costume at the nature center.

Leesi loves being a puppy. Jonathan is ambivalent about being a giraffe.

A ride on the ferris wheel with a two-year old can be a frightening experience
(for the mom, that is).

Jonathan's tiny pool

A trip to the Columbia County Fair with Grammy.
"Pigs won't get me, pigs won't get me!"

Tea Party with Grammy and Grams... what fun!