It's been raining like crazy at our house over the last week. Almost every afternoon we've gotten a thunder storm. Or two. Today we had three. And Mason enjoyed every bit of them.

I think he found a new favorite way to take a bath!


5 months

Happy 5 months, Emma girl!

This has been a month of adjustments! Ever since I went no-dairy and got you some reflux medicine, you've been a much happier girl. And our house has been a little more peaceful! There's only so much high-pitched screaming we can take. Thankfully the only shrieking we endure now are your happy squeals, which you do (loudly) all morning long.

You are a very inconsistent napper and usually take three to four naps a day. One is usually about an hour and a half and the others are 30 minutes to an hour. But, you've got your night routine down. You go to bed around 8 and wake up once to eat, usually around 3. You are quite the snuggler when you are sleepy. In fact, you would love it if we held and cuddled you all day long. I'm learning how to do many things with one hand in fact. But when we do set you down you enjoy your bumbo, exersaucer or rolling on the floor. All three are prone to having a big brother hovering nearby though.

You're getting better at riding in the car, but we also haven't really ventured too far this month. We'll see if that holds true for the few trips we have planned in the coming month.

At 5 months, Emma:

~you roll over very easily

~you light up the room with your smile

~you love being out in the greenhouse

~you still fit into most of your 3 month clothes

~you are so close to sitting up, and will do it briefly without support

~you have big, beautiful eyes that seem to be a different color every day

~you giggle

~you love to watch ceiling fans

~you put up with a lot from Mason

~you still sleep on your side or tummy

You are such a sweetie, Emma. We love to play with you and watch you take in the world around you. You are our little snuggle-bug and we love you so much!




the first week

The first week of school has come and gone. I am in love with my class this year. They are so much fun. The first day of school was a blast, the time just flew by. I forgot how much I "learn" from my second graders. Every year I plan all my lessons and activities and think about all the different questions I am going to ask, but I always forget the fact that second graders are answering those questions and they come up with some pretty bizarre things. I forget how quickly I have to think on my feet as I respond to them, encourage them, and sometimes steer them in a new direction. My favorite one from the week was when I asked my students where we could go in our community to solve problems and one student answered, "a haunted house." Oh how I love those second graders.

But now I'm home for the weekend (and so blessed that my weekends are three day weekends!) and spent the morning playing with the little ones. Emma had a great week (they both did!) with Marylin and Grammie. Emma was fussy for most of the day on Monday, but each day seemed to get progressively better. So, for now I think the no-dairy diet seems to be working. I do miss my cheese though (pizza just isn't the same!). But it's worth it to have a happy baby.

This morning I made baked oatmeal with fresh peaches for breakfast. It was a nice change to make a real breakfast and not have to run out the door to work. Mason was chowing down on his, using his spoon in his left hand. I asked him if he was a lefty today and he said, "No, mommy, I'm a boy." He also had us cracking up on Monday when Marylin said "whoopsie-daisy" and he replied, "no....whoopsie-java!"

After our walk we spent some time playing farm. Mason has a new way of looking for his toys. I wish I could stick my head in a bag and find whatever it is I'm looking for.

We have a table full of basil, all rinsed and drying, waiting to be put in the freezer. I have a couple batches of pesto already in the freezer and I'm busy dreaming of all the soups and stews I can make this fall. I'm definitely loving the crockpot these days since the last thing I want to do when I get home is make dinner.

I'd much rather play with these two goof-balls!

And then we all crash!

It was a wonderful week, but I'm exhausted! Happy weekend everyone!


back to school...

It's that time of year again. School starts tomorrow. I love this time of year. I've been busy working in my classroom and planning lessons. I always have so many new ideas and plans for each school year. I met most of my second graders at our "Meet Your Teacher" night and I can just tell it's going to be a fun year. So many little personalities and so much potential.

Of course it means spending four days a week away from my own little ones. This year has been harder than last year for some reason. I think it's because my emma girl has been really fussy and just wants her momma. She's been arching her back, crying, taking short naps and having tummy problems. The doctor gave us some medicine for reflux, which is helping a bit, but she is still really gassy and having an upset tummy. I'm cutting out all dairy to see if we can make her a little more comfortable.

I've been really blessed to have spent so much time at home after emma was born. We had an amazing summer playing together, and Ryan's schedule allowed him to be home a lot too. So much family time...I was spoiled. But now it's time to switch gears. I told Ryan the other day that this was as clean as our house was going to be for the next 9 months. We just laughed and chatted about balancing family, work, finishing house projects, playing with the kids, etc. I love that we can make it work (most days!).

I have the best husband ever. He is so understanding and encouraging. I can share with him my struggles with balancing teacher and mommy. He reminds me that I'm good at both and that means the world to me.

In other random notes, a few things that Mason has said that make us laugh:

~Mason and I were walking out to feed the chickens. I was carrying him since he was barefoot. On the way he said, "Mommy has shoes on, I have my feet on."

~Mason is really into BIG things (a BIG scoop of yogurt, the BIG grilled cheese sandwich...ok I guess it's mostly BIG food. haha.) So we were singing Twinkle Twinkle Little Star one night with the cousins and he stopped and said, "No....BIG star!"

~A few nights ago we asked Mason to pick up his blocks for bed. He did and then we brushed his teeth and read a book. Ryan told him to go give me a hug because now it was time for bed. He replied, "how about I pick up ALL my toys." Such a smart little procrastinator. I mean really, how do you say no to that?

~Mason and Ryan went camping with some friends over the weekend. Mason was playing with his friend (who's two also). The little boy took Mason's water bottle and ran away with it. Mason said "water bottle please" a couple of times, but he just kept running. Then he turned to Ryan and said, "daddy, please not working."

~Just last night Emma was "talking," more like squaking actually. Mason turned to her and said, "Emma, what you squeaking about?"

Love my little kiddos!



baby smiles

Just a few pictures of our emma girl hammin' it up for the camera. I love her little toothless grin and can't seem to get enough of her funny belly laughs.


"I'm working!"

While I was hanging up the laundry in Mason's room tonight we were chatting away. He kept telling me that he "was working." I wasn't really paying attention as we talked about his hammers and wrenches.

Then I told him it was time for bed. He said, "No, mommy. I'm working!" Sure enough, he had put on his working hat, found every single one of his tools, lined them up, and proceeded to work on his giraffe bike. I couldn't resist a few pictures as he worked away. Again I told him it was time for bed. He gathered up all his tools and told me he was going to work with daddy (who was in the garage putting together some camping gear.)

How can you say no to that face? So, out we went. Ryan just started cracking up. Mason lined up all of his tools out there and got right to work.
He spent about ten minutes out there before Ryan said they were done for the night. Mason just kept right on working. Ryan turned off the lights and said it was time to go inside. Mason replied, "Ok, see you later!" What a silly (and hardworking:) boy. He finally came inside, set his hat on the table and pronounced that he was done working for the night and that he was going to bed "just like daddy!" Oh how I love that boy.



We had great plans to go cut firewood today. But it was very cloudy this morning with a forecast for lots of rain, so we stayed home and tackled other projects instead. We went on a walk right after breakfast (where Ryan and I both decided it felt like fall in the air...hopefully it was just the impending rain making it so chilly) Then Ryan and Mason spent most of the morning in the garage. Mason brought out one of his hammers and his screwdriver so he could "work" on the truck.

Then we played peek-a-boo with Emma.

During naptime we made an insane mess in the kitchen. We canned a batch of blueberry lime jam and black velvet apricot butter.

Now I have a ham in the oven and am awaiting the arrival of my cousins for dinner. We've been doing "Tuesday Night Dinner" all summer. It's fun to cook new things for them (since I can't seem to stop trying new recipes) and hang out, chatting and laughing.

Here is a little run-down of past Tuesdays. We only remembered to take pictures at a few of our little gatherings.

The one with the fondue dessert:

The one where we celebrated Marylin getting her cosmotology license:
The one with the Mason-pillow-toss:
The one where we made the count-down chain for Marylin (the bride-to-be!!)
Who knows what tonight will hold (beside ham and haircuts:), but I'm sure we will laugh off more calories than we consume (or at least we can hope...)


mango blueberry muffins

I had some mangoes sitting on the counter and decided to make some muffins over the weekend. I found a recipe for mango blueberry muffins and I thought they sounded delicious. I gave them a little makeover so they would be a little healthier (the original recipe had 1 1/4 cup of sugar!)

Mango Blueberry Muffins with Toasted Coconut
adapted from this recipe

1/2 c. butter
1/2 c. brown sugar
1/2 tsp. salt
2 eggs
1 1/4 c. whole wheat flour
1/2 c. ground flaxseed
2 tsp. baking powder
1/2 c. buttermilk
1 c. blueberries
1/4 c. flour
1 c. mango, chopped

Coconut Topping:
1 Tbsp. flour
1/4 tsp. cinnamon
3 Tbsp. shredded coconut
pinch salt

Beat butter, brown sugar, sugar and salt. Add eggs one at a time and beat well. Combine dry ingredients and mix into wet ingredients. Toss blueberries with flour. Fold in mangoes and blueberries. Combine coconut topping ingredients. Pour batter into greased muffin tins and top with coconut. Bake at 375 for about 30 minutes.

I have one more mango sitting on the counter which very well could end up in a smoothie today!