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Sep 23, 2016

WHAT MAKES A GOOD PARENT


I recently was asked this question. And it made me think. 

The thought that keeps coming back to me is a good parent is one that loves their children unconditionally. The love that is enduring. The forgiving kind that loves them no matter how many times they make the same mistake over and over again and never gives up on them.

This simple thought has given me a sense of relief throughout the week. Of course, this idea is easier said than done (especially when thinking about teenagers and adult children) but in the end, it's really all that matters. Whether you use binkies or not, or sleep train or not, or cry it out or not, or breastfeed or not, or work or not, or let your kids watch tv or not, etc... are all just sideline details. 

It's important to figure out what works best for your family and I believe that small decisions do matter but in observing families around me, I've found that successful families look different and the ones that seem to be happiest are the ones who accept the members of their family for who they are, love them through everything, are always supportive, and always have hope that situations will get better no matter how bleak they may seem at the time. 

I recently was at a meeting where Elder Oaks spoke and he said, "To not have hope is to not have faith in Jesus Christ."

I want to instill in my kids that there is always hope in the plan God has for us even if it looks different than the plan we have for ourselves and... 

that I love them with my whole heart and soul no matter what they do. 

Sep 22, 2016

BROWNIES ON A RAINY DAY

The other day I made brownies with the kids for the first time. I'm a cookie girl so I forget about brownies and how easy they are! It's been weird weather this week, rainy but also really humid. The kids and I were having a down day at the house. They were kind of melting down a little bit and I woke up on the wrong side of the bed. #pregnant During Naomi's afternoon nap, I was rummaging through the food cupboard in the garage trying to find something for dinner and that's when I spotted the glorious Ghirardelli box I forgot we had!

As we were making them, I could tell Carter wanted to lick the spoon so bad. When I finally told him he could I thought his eyes might fall out of his head, haha!

Evenutally Naomi tried to run off with the goods...


While the brownies baked in the oven, they ate a snack Carter got for both of them while they watched the rain...
As Naomi enters the toddler stage, the cuteness between these two is too much!

Sep 20, 2016

WEEKEND HIGHLIGHTS


Daron left early Thursday morning for a work trip to Utah last week. By early, I mean 3:45 in the AM! As he was gathering his things and heading out the door, Carter must have heard him because he woke up as Daron was walking down the drive way to his car. Carter burst into the saddest tears, flung open the front door and started running after him. I was half asleep still and delirious and started screaming at Daron in drive way. I had this terrifying picture of Daron not realizing Carter had come out after him and something bad happening. The whole thing was quite the wake up call. They gave each other the sweetest hung in the black night and Carter came back in and slept with me like he always does when Daron is gone.

We missed our main man around here like crazy. I've already told Daron he can't leave me again pregnant. He really has no control over it but my emotional, pregnant self is doubtful about my capabilities handling days alone with the kids again before this baby is out. Every time Daron leaves, I think about Mothers who aren't with their husbands for whatever reason or don't have husbands and my mind is boggled. 

Anyway, it was a great, hard week (if that makes sens?) that had some highlights I wanted to share... aka remember!

My sister's husband travels a lot, much more than Daron! We realized both of our husbands would be gone at the same time so she came up to stay with me and help my pregnant-self out. My mom and sister-in-law Dayana also ended up coming and we made it quite the party. They cleaned out my freezer (something I've been neglecting) and organized my pantry, mopped my floors and my sister cleaned my windows(!!) while I ran errands without the kids.



Every time I looked out my kitchen window, my heart sang. 

She and I also did a face mask together.


We laughed so hard because we felt so silly. I had never done a mask before! The more we laughed the more it cracked off earlier than it was supposed to. Somehow it still worked leaving our skin plump with a nice glow, so fun!

I also visited my parents who are renting in Corona Del Mar while their house is fixed. Months ago, it experienced a ton of water damage. It's been a horrible hassle but we don't mind visiting charming Corona Del Mar while they have to be out of their house!


^This picture makes me laugh. My mom was trying to help Carter down but he refused and she is walking away shaking her head saying, "That stubborn one!" That stubborn one is right... ha!

Pressed Juice has been blowing up my instagram feed so I decided to give it a second try. I never liked my order before but I realized the goodness is all in the sauces. I put chocolate and peanut butter sauce all over mine and became a believer!

When we got home, the rest of the prints going on our fridge had arrived! It's like Christmas morning when stuff like this comes in the mail...
I took a picture of the three of us Sunday morning because we were ready ON TIME for church without Daron there to help. Breakfast wasn't cleaned up, the kid's clothes got stains on them from finding the candy my mom had given them the day before and for some reason, I was stepping on raisins that were everywhere(??) but we made it there early and HAPPY... a double miracle. (Sacrament meeting, on the other hand, was a disaster). You win some, you lose some, right?

Carter and Naomi sharing a succor... Naomi's happy dance and smile when she gets something great is hard to beat!

and these two lovin' on each other...

Daron came home Sunday night and all was well again. We sure do love that guy. 

Sep 14, 2016

BEST OF... SUMMER 2016

This summer was relatively low key. We went on few vacations and outings. We spent almost all summer at the beach or at my parent's house swimming. I spent most nights falling asleep at 8:30 and trying to survive nausea. It was nice to stay around here in Cardiff and get to know the area where we live better. I feel like it's taken a long time since I've been sick and pregnant or in the newborn/ a baby's first year of life stage. 

Here it goes... a few of the "best of" for Summer 2016:

The first beach day of the summer with a few of my besties. 

There were more people who came but we didn't think to take a picture until it was almost too late... very typical for us. We never take pictures together and the last picture of us is realizing that "Hey! We actually got our act together and are taking a picture!" I was so proud of us.

Attending the Padre's opening game. Daron and I had big plans to attend a lot of these games. I'm not really sure what happened because this was the only one... ha!



^ I almost forgot about the days Naomi would rip out her clip the second I put it in her hair! So glad she's over that... for the most part.

A dear friend from college, Shelby, who lives in Arizona now came to visit me. 


This was so, so fun! I loved it. She came and stayed during the week which was awesome because I had a perma-friend for a week while Daron worked. It was really low key but since she was visiting, we of course used it as an excuse to go out to breakfast a lot and do new things, like strawberry picking! We hadn't done that. We also took lots of pictures for each other of our kids. A few that she captured are some of my new favorites!



After 6 years of trying, my sister and her husband were finally able to welcome their first baby into the world, Jack Cannon Rick. Below is his blessing day... Once Ellery and I have our babies, that will make 4 cousins within one year! Mine is the only girl... anxious to see how that goes!



^On a totally random side note, I'm laughing at this picture. I remember thinking I looked really cute this day. But I look at my hair now and realize I was having a total bad hair day. 

Running through the sprinklers! We didn't do this enough! 


Telling Daron that I was pregnant after hiding it from him for 10 WHOLE WEEKS!!!!!!!!! And pretty much putting him in a shock-coma once I did...


I kind of forgot about this whole ordeal. I'll have to write more on it later. It really was epic.


Glorious nights where we were able to get the kids down early. 


This is so hard to do in the summer! But it was awesome when it happened because Daron and I got to enjoy time together when it was still light. Our excitement usually lead to us taking "funny face" snaps that still crack me up.



Cooking while pregnant for most women is not a pleasant experience. Some mornings, I would take the kids out to breakfast and we would take it to the beach... these were great mornings.


These sweet hugs...

They always end up being more of a tackle haha

Daron's sister and her boyfriend came to visit. 


absolutely love having visitors! I just wished Daron could have spent more time with us... Carter & Naomi were in heaven. 


^And how much does Naomi look like she could be Becca's child more than mine!? She is such a Young... 

Swimming at my parent's house.

Swimming with the kids was rather difficult this summer. (And I'm afraid next summer won't be much better!) Naomi isn't quite big enough for the puddle jumper yet and crawls out of any other pool contraption there is and also thinks she can swim... Carter is doing great at swimming but I still worry and am always trying to keep a nervous eye on him. Soooooo, summer of 2018... we are already looking forward to you!


This day (pictured below) was recent. I told the kids they could not swim! Then found them 20 minutes later in the spa with my mom... naked. It's taken me a while to get used to Grandparent rules. Or I guess I should say, the lack thereof!

Watching Naomi develop the cutest personality! 


This girl was so sweet and calm as a baby. I couldn't picture what she was going to be like as she got older. It's been such a treat to watch her grow. This stage is so fun but also exhausting. She understands everything but can't speak (which leads to lots and lots of screaming) and is so mobile yet doesn't understand the world around her (like 10 ft drop offs at the park). It's always shocking once your kid gets an opinion... it's like "ope, bye bye baby! here comes my toddler!" She is incredibly funny though which I didn't expect. She's at the age where I wish I could tape her entire life because it's all just too good!


^ "Mama, coooooold!" she says at the supermarket. 

Enjoying mornings with this gorgeous summer light...


I'm going to miss soft summer light waking me up in the mornings. I honestly would roll over with a huge smile on my face. It was always so peaceful and beautiful!



Labor Day in Colorado!


We spent the weekend hanging out with Daron's family and attending his sister's bridal shower. Wedding Bells are coming in October and we can't wait. Weddings are so fun. I mentioned before how my camera is broke so I took very few pictures but we went to the Fort Collins Temple Open House where Anna and Dan will get married,  ate yummy food, enjoyed a day at the lake, and I basically didn't see carter for 5 days straight because he was with his cousin the entire time. I remember having weeks like this when I was kid and was around my cousins. They were the best! 



Not pictured were the summer peaches! Ah! They were to die for this year! I thought I had a picture of Naomi devouring one but it was actually a video. A hilarious video. They were so good this year. The watermelon struggled I thought... but I'll be dreaming of the peaches until next summer. 

A big wave goodbye to Summer and hellllooooo to Fall!