August 28, 2014

We drove to Utah!

Utah is BEAUTIFUL! The skies! The mountains! The weather! The people!!

We drove up to Utah to visit friends from DC---The Tolleys and got to see so many friends and family members. It was a dream to have Freddie play with his cousins and with my friend's kids...and to do so much of it OUTSIDE, yay. It was a fantastic trip.

Collin and the kids and I left late at night and drove 4 hours north to Page--and camped in our car. We intended on being in the woods, but decided to stay in the Walmart parking lot instead because then we could get up and brush our teeth, eat breakfast close by and get back on the road early. It worked out great. We laid the seats down in our 4 Runner and put out blankets and pillows. We slept w the windows and doors open. There were a ton of other people with the same idea!

After a great weekend, Collin flew back home for work and we stayed a few more days and then drove home (JUST ME and the kids.) It was tough at times...took us 18 hours instead of 9.5....and two days...and lots of crying Hattie....BUT we stopped lots and had tons of fun! It was great and SO WORTH IT! Freddie loves road trips and does great. He helps pump the gas and every other thing. He had a couple of frustrated/tired of being in the car times at the very end. We stopped at a random petting zoo along the way and petted AND FED a camel, Zebras, giant huge bull, (just SAW) ostriches, peecocks, lambs, and the usual goats and chickens, cows, donkeys! IT WAS SO COOL.

There was also a Hollywood set weird but fun...see pictures below. My favorite town was Beaver, UT. They claim the best tasting water in America...and I'll totally back them up. (Another great thing about Utah....can drink water straight from the tap...always hydrated.) And the people were generally just cool. Great rest stop there too.

But probably my most favorite part of the trip was on the way back, driving AROUND Flagstaff (on the 40 West); the kids were asleep, the skies were grey and it was just POURING RAIN. I love that town. Love it. It fills my soul. The rain was spiritual and enchanting.

Well, here are tons of photos from the trip....

August 27, 2014

I miss Osborn Ward and the YW

When Freddie first went into this nursery, he would cry and cry. But the nursery workers would shoo me away and hold and comfort him, read to him, hug him, sing to him, play with him. In time he loved that nursery and now whenever we travel, he has no problems going to any other nursery or class. He's so outgoing and says hi to everyone and makes himself at home. The move into our new ward was effortless for him.

life right now

August 26, 2014

Potty update

Saturday lots of peeling in the toilet. One accident of forgetting. It was at a friends house but luckily on the tile. 
That night he wanted to wear a diaper to bed. Sunday he was excited to wear underwear again. One accident. Monday morning he POOPED in the potty, first time ever and completely not prompted. That day we had swim lessons and he was pretty insecure and cried for me a lot. (He had a hard time last week too. Not the norm for him.) His instructor said his skill is all there but a) the other two kids in the class cry the entire time and it might he freaking him out but she also thinks that b) working on learning to wear underwear is a big milestone and it could be really overwhelming him. (Which is no big deal to any of us, just an observation.)  He has wanted to wear diapers since lessons. Mon night for fhe we went swimming and had a great time. 
so we will just try to listen to what he's saying and needing and take it slow. 

Honestly I love reaching these new milestones together and figuring it all out. I don't mind him wearing diapers---never have had a hard time w it so I'm good w going at his pace :)

August 24, 2014

My sweet sweet sweet babe, on my breast, drinking, coughing aging again. She woke up, sat up, crying, sputtering, threw up all over me and herself...oddly enough only one tiny spot on the bed. In the tub, middle of the night, mind you, Freddie slept through it all. 
So much plehgm. She trying to sleep but wakes and cries out. She's tired and a little hungry. She needs comfort. I hold her and her tiny hand touches mine. We will see the doctor tomorrow. Now I'm drifting. 

August 23, 2014

Freddie and the potty chair

Today Freddie helped pour a big bowl of ice water onto my head and then he took off his pants and diaper and announced that he doesn't want to wear a diaper anymore but wants to wear big boy underwear. I said, ok, and explained what that means and what he will have to do and we practiced. Then time after time throughout the day he would say he needs to go potty and would pull his pants down and go in the potty!!!! Now he will be three next month and we have never pushed him. We have had a potty chair for over a year and have allowed him lots of naked time and time in underwear that has always resulted in peeing through them (I don't call this an accident because I don't think he intended for any less.) and who knows---maybe tomorrow he will want to go back to diapers or maybe he will have tons of "accidents" but this proves to me that he will grow up and move on from being a baby and even a child someday. I need to not take his childhood for granted, not get so frustrated so easily and not let myself get distracted. 

POTTY PALOOZA!!!!!!!! ----An awesome book that TALKS about going potty and Fred loves it. We read it all the time. FAQs, steps, songs etc for preparing for going to the bathroom in the toilet and not wearing diapers anymore. It's not about forcing your child to be potty trained, but about letting your child lead when he is comfortable. Who knows what'll happen but I'm excited for these new milestones!! 
Fred and I are best friends. I'm so proud of him. 

August 21, 2014


Harriet Jillian smith at 8 months:

She crawls all over, super fast! She uses all fours or a tripod leg to get even faster. She sits up high on her knees and waves and thrashes her arms about...either dancing or showing us how strong she is and that she can beat us up. 
She says mama and dada although I'm pretty sure dada was her first word.  She and Collin have really bonded recently. She adores him. When he gets home from work Collin takes her and plays with her and she just lights up and won't stop staring at him. 
She is so tough! Freddie gives her the ol heave ho and mostly she takes it and just laughs a lot...until she's had enough and cries a high-pitched super feminine cry or scream. I love how "girly" it is. 
Girl loves her sleep. She is also interested in every little detail around her and spends time on the floor inspecting every crack and knob. She loves to splash in water and will have a full conversation in baby talk with ya. She "ooooooohs" a lot and we all love to mimic her. She also loves food and will eat anything we give her...she will crawl up to a low table and grab a huge vine of grapes and try to eat them all...before you can even say, "Hattie!!!" Hehe. She also lives nursing and being close to mama bShe is so much fun every day and adds so much to our family. We all adore her. Happy bday darling sweet baby girl. 

August 17, 2014

A friend asked for advice on tandem nursing...

I got pregnant w my daughter when my son was 18 months and bfeeding all the time. My supply did go way down but he didn't lose interest!!!!! It was painful at times but it didn't feel right to wean. Then I had my 2nd when first was 27 mo and when the milk came in he was at first weirded out but then loved it!! The fatty super nutrient rich newborn milk made him grow a ton and gave him chubby cheeks and soft skin. My newborn always had plenty of milk and she comes first with the milk. He tells me, "Hattie needs mommy! She wants milky!" I have been tandem nursing for 8 months. And my son will be 3 next month. It has had it's challenges!!!!!!! Yes!!! It can be downright crazy sometimes and I've felt the guilt many times over him being so young still and having to grow up so much but the bond they share and that I share w each is so beautiful. They nap together and hold hands and wrestle and play and love each other. And in the midst of all his growing pains and learning how to be a part of this world, he has the comfort and security of nursing. It's not for everyone! But it's great for us. 

August 13, 2014

Evening walk

The grass
The sounds: clicking, calling, calming
The light blue, fading
Up up there are tiny holes through which see it coming through
Running running running stopping turning connecting to my eyes. And then around again. 
Breathe deeply the night
Keep deeply this night
Look fondly
Hold hugging
These arms carrying everything in them. They must be good enough, must work harder. 

Glee following and coming. 
He's slowing, stopping, dragging, begging, resting. Giving it all to me.
Rest now. 

August 10, 2014

I love my family

Wholesome Activities Will Strengthen My Family

Read this ensign article. I have been realizing many things recently, one being that I struggle with just sitting down w my kids sometimes. We go out lots and play and do things but when we are home I'm easily distracted while the kids play. This is fine and good for them to be independent but I also want to spend some of this precious time with them on the floor at their level, giving them my UNDIVIDED attention, while they are tiny and so innocent and so in love with me. 
I want and need for them to feel they are the priority. They need it. It will build their confidence and bring us closer together. 
I love these little rascals. 

We've been in Utah and have been loving it!!! Why have we not gone on more long road trips?? They are so good. Hattie gets a little fussy being in the car too much. But it's fun being gone. 
At my cousin, Ilene's, home, there is so much yard and garden. They kids just play and play and are so happy and distracted. The weather and greenery are beautiful. We love driving around Provo. I feel connected to my family here. We are going to see very good friends from Rockville today!!!!!!!!!! I'm so excited I could die. 
Hattie is cruising on all the furniture, tries to climb stairs, rolls and gets stuck under the bed, plays w all the toys, crawls all over, opens cracked doors, thinks she is generally hilarious (and she's right) and puts lots of tiny objects from a non baby proofed house in her mouth (coins, rubber bands, and more.)

And now I need to sleep more. 

August 4, 2014

I'm definitely having one of those moments when it looks like everyone else is so happy and has the best marriages and what an easy time raising their kids and so many friends.....and I feel so far from all those things. 

August 3, 2014

Magic in the moonlight

Magic in the Moonlight, Woody Allen 

A very good film. Gorgeous cinematography and scenery (southern France). Beautiful costumes (set in late 20s). Great acting. Great great writing/story. Gives one lots to talk about after. 

Date night last night and after getting some pants and dinner at kneaders (so good!!) we watched this film, arms together, sleeping Harriet. A couple stopped us after the movie and said how beautiful Hattie is and that they used to take their now teenaged-daughter to movies as a baby. 
It was slightly raining and quite cool out after the movie. We walked to the car and smith commented on how romantic it felt. I was thinking it. It was late. We kissed because it felt right and looked up at the rain. 

August 2, 2014


In Mosiah 4:9+

Believe in God. Trust him. In all things, everyday, remember him and the fact that I'm nothing without him...humble myself because of his steadfastness and long suffering toward me, unqorthy as I am. Call on him daily. Endure. Remain steadfast in my faith in him. 

If I do this....

V12- I will be filled with love. I will not have a mind to injure another person, but to live peaceably. 
My children will not go hungry, will love each other, will remain faithful. 
I will lift up others around me and give to the poor and needy and teach my children to walk in righteousness and to love and serve each other. 

I want to do these.