Signs that my husband has been grocery shopping

We have several different speciality cheeses in the fridge. 

We have loads of cereal.


My last car was a 2006

We are in need of a new car and so have been test driving a few. For one of the test drives, I got in the car and waited for the salesman to give me the key. He wasn't handing it over. I looked at the salesman like, "Okay, I need the key.  This is when you give me the key so I can start the car."  And he's looking at me like, "What are you waiting for? Go ahead." And there was this long pause which became an awkward silence and I couldn't take it anymore so I said "Can I have the key?" To which he replied, "I'd give it to you, but I've had people accidentally leave the dealership with them."  Um, what? I still didn't get it. I was thinking, "Well, how are we going to drive this thing?" At which point I saw the red start engine button and felt very foolish. This was a keyless start car and it took me an amazingly long time to figure that out. Yep, I am old school. To solidify this fact even more, during the drive I looked at the front console with all of the buttons and said, "How do you turn off the radio?" and "What is that screen for?" (there were two), like an 80-year-old trying to use an iPad for the first time.

Laundry lifesaver

Here's the truth: I am not a fan of laundry.  Especially the folding part. I have been known to leave a whole pile of laundry on the bedroom floor until we've worn about 91% of it.  That means it lays there for a whole week. I am not proud of this. The worst part of the system is trying to find socks. All the sifting and re-sifting just to find a match. Exhausting. Infuriating. And my fault. 

I knew something had to be done. So I went to Target. I bought four cube bins. One each for Jess, the boys and me (Ian's clothes are cleaned separately due to scent free detergent but I'll add a bin for him when the time comes).

Now instead of throwing the clean pile of laundry on the floor, I immediately separate it into the bins. Then, usually a bit later, I take the bins to the respective person's closet to fold the clothes and put away all in one step. No folding in my room and carrying each pile to their room. This makes laundry so much easier!  And no more laundry on the floor. 


Nearly 3 weeks

Gee, it's fun to have a new little one in the house. Little Ian is a great babe and  such a blessing. 

He gets a lot of love. 

In other news, the big kids are climbing trees like no ones business. 



Weighing in at 7 lbs 9 oz and 19 inches, Ian Charles joined our fam and we love him bundles and bundles! 


Snail titles

Oliver and Ansel love to go snail hunting in the courtyard of my doc's office. They find a lot of empty shells, but yesterday they found some live specimens. They put them in plastic cups and called them their pets. The best part is the names they gave them! Oliver's new pal is John Coop (middle name: Vancouver) and Ansel's little buddy is Tickle Beethoven (middle name: Bon Bon, as in the French name for candy). These are regal snails. 

Donut peach

I think I have found a healthy alternative to my donut obsession, the donut peach. I recently discovered this pleasantly sweet treat at the local farmers market. I quickly bought a bucket for $5. Best treat money ever spent. Everyone at home thinks so too.


Switzerland about 16 years ago

Lately, I've been reading blogs where people report on their trips to Europe. Many individuals share photos of Switzerland, and man, that place is beautiful!  It takes me back to a trip my parents, three of my siblings and I took a good while back. What great memories. It makes me want to travel with my little family soon!

My sister and I up high with mountains behind us and a glacier in front of us. 
My sisters and I enjoying the view of the Matterhorn from our Zermatt hotel balcony. 
My dad, who has Swiss heritage, living a dream and playing the alp horn in the mountains of Switzerland. We all look very serious about this moment. 
My brother, mom and I enjoying the lake in Interlaken.  
The fam enjoying one of the many waterfalls and quaint mountainsides found in Switzerland. 

Oh, what a trip! And I must say, with that haircut and my clothes, I was mistaken for a local many, many times on the trip. Haha!



August is here! And again summer has gone by with many things going on. Most of the time has been wonderful. Some of it has been hard with sad family news. The strange dichotomy is that when sad things happen life goes on and you've got to keep doing the little things each day. The hardest part is being powerless to make the situation right, but that's when the support mindset kicks in and helping with all those little things make dealing with the situation a bit easier. I know this is all so vague but there you have it. With that said, we've been able to spend quality time doing fun things to fill in these summer days. Boy, how I love a lazy summer morning where the boys get to play and laugh until it's lunchtime. And walking barefoot outside, what a luxury. I don't care if I step on a twig, this is the life!

Below are some pics of some of our doings these days. Scroll through as desired. 

One weekend afternoon in June was cold and rainy. Not to worry! Oliver put together a miniature golf game and we played a few holes. Needless to say, there was some bending of the rules, but it was a good time. 

I may have been the last person to realize that there was an awesome canyon-inspired splash park at Liberty Park, but we've taken full advantage this summer. Such fun at that park. Always lots of kids and my boys love it (doesn't hurt that Banbury Cross donuts is just down the road either :). 

These kids have taken to bike riding this summer and they do it A LOT. 

We visited a petting zoo and pretty much had the place to ourselves. We got to see goats, alpaca, sheep, chickens (Ollie got to harvest the eggs), pigs, chicks, horses, and rabbits. 

Tennis lessons for Ollie were awesome. He had a fun time and I learned a few things myself listening to the coach. Where can I sign up?

Jess' birthday (complete with a half cake) was great. Those boys were very eager for him to come home and blow out the candles. 

Ansel learned to pump! Ahh, the freedom for him and me. Wahoo!

Sparkler magic on the 4th of July. Ansel loved the carnival we went to and is planning the rides he will try next year. I think Oliver was counting down the days to this holiday the day he got out of school. 

Two front teeth, gone. Apparently, Oliver does not want anyone but himself to pull his teeth out. "It's my goal to pull out my own teeth," he says to anyone asking. 

Cousin group hug! Speaking of hugs, Ansel is the sweetest 3 year old and likes to give out hugs. Kisses too. I can't get enough. 

Brother fun after a doc appointment. Ahh, the fun. On a different day they found lots of empty snail shells in the garden. We found some live ones too. Poor garden but good times for snail exploration. 

36 weeks pregnancy photo in the perfect lighting of a golf course bathroom. Man, those bathroom lighting people know how to do it right. Anyhow, I've never posted a pic of a pregnant me on this blog or anywhere for that matter, but I find that I miss the fact that I can't go back and see that for my other two kids, so there it is. And I know I won't get professional photos done. I have now joined the selfie in the bathroom club, as well as the selfie as a pregnant person club.

A visit to my mom's grave with Jess and the boys. Jess always does a great job cleaning around the headstones. I help too, but he's got the skills. 

Cousins at the creek up Big Cottonwood canyon. We were there for 4 hours and never did I get asked "when are we going home?"  My sister and her family came to visit and it was so nice. 

Alpine sliding and good times. Ollie did it by himself and totally enjoyed it. Ansel couldn't wait to go on the lift and then slide down. They wanted to go again and again. If only the pricing for such a thing were like the good old days. Oh well.

Swimming lessons for Ollie have been great! We went for semi-private lessons and it has made all the difference this year. Oliver loves his teacher, who is a college student with some excellent kid skills. He always tells her thanks and he totally means it. 

This summer has been a summer of "conquering fears" for Oliver.  He's told me this a few times and it is true. I am very happy for him and all he's done. As for Ansel, he wants to do everything and anything Oliver does, the kid wants to do tennis and golf and swim lessons. He is ready to try soccer and has a "need for speed."  Jess and I have recently celebrated another year of marriage and friendship. We do a lot of listening to good music and going to places our kids want to visit. And that is that. 


Boys camp

I'm sitting here in the living room all by myself at home. This is a rarity. Home alone and it's quiet. Jess and the boys have been gone for a total of 4 minutes and I'm already missing them.  Cheesy but true!

They are off to what Ollie has termed "boys camp."  Since I go up to girls camp with the young women (and was up there yesterday), the father and sons campout or what now has become the neighborhood family campout is "boys camp" to Ollie. He has been talking about going on this campout since he got home from the last one last summer. Often he would count down the days to said boys camp, "Mom, there are 12 days til boys camp."  And this time around Ansel gets to go. He is just as excited. He helped pack his own bag and remembered not to forget his compass. He even buckled himself into his car seat 5 minutes before anyone was even outside getting in the car. Needless to say, they were pumped.

Their excitement made me want to jump in the car with them and go. But this 7 month pregnant body would be a-twisting and a-turning in the night all the while trying not to wake them up, so I'll forgo boys camp. Plus, it's special to spend time just with dad. I hope they have a rip roaring time. 

These three, what a great crew!

photo from a previous campout on Memorial Day weekend, Yuba Lake 2016