Sunday, November 15, 2020

Boone Visit & Lewis' Baptism

 Having Ali, Matthias, and Elise here was the best. We went on walks, had fun watching Camden and Elise together, played Code Names and ate treats after kids went to bed, laughed a lot, started my board and batten project in our dining room, got take out from the famous pie place that I haven't stopped thinking about since our date night there, and did a little driving tour of Fort Collins. I love, love, love being with my sister.

My nephew Lewis had his baptism coming up on Sunday, and we watched the weather and saw that Thursday was our only chance to drive there between some snow on I-80. So Thursday we packed up and I followed Ali and Matthias to their new house in South Jordan with my boys. They were so nice to let us come stay with them (and come visit us before that) while their house is in boxes. They had just moved in a couple days before driving out to see us. I love when I can picture where my family lives. On Friday I unpacked Ali's kitchen while Ali and Matthias ran errands and did some projects in their new house. My parents came up that afternoon, and Saturday we enjoyed spending time together and eating Chip cookies. We played Last Word and Cover Your Assets, and Ali and I played Code Names Duet. I am both an extrovert and an introvert, but whatever the word is for getting energy from games, I am most definitely that. I love playing games at night with my family SO much.

Sunday the Miners came over for lunch, and then they left to their ward where Jaren gave a talk in Sacrament meeting. We watched the broadcast and he did a great job. My nieces and nephews are growing up. I love them so much and I am kind of shocked at how big they are getting. I love seeing who they're becoming. That night we were able to see Lewis get baptized and he is such a special soul. He has the biggest heart, loves to make people laugh, and has such a loving spirit. I love him and I was grateful to be able to see his baptism.

This year has been really hard for everyone. Navigating this week was complicated, even within our own family, and sometimes there are just no right answers. Sometimes people feel like there are right answers and they get to different conclusions. But what I took away from this week is that my love for my family is really, really deep and that being in the same place as them always reminds me how grateful I am to have them forever. My kids are in their happiest state when they are around cousins. It's a joy to watch. I hope that next year brings some much needed peace after the turmoil of this year. 

Those bundled babies in that double stroller make me really happy. So cute!

Elise is very enthusiastic about her bottles and it was just so fun for me.
Camden only took a few bottles, and stopped at four months old,
so I just soaked up being able to feed her.

This room has been half painted for weeks, waiting for board and batten. 
I've been saving this project for last because it intimidates me more than my shiplap walls, or geometric wall, or stenciled paint... this seems more complicated and tedious. Here we go.

I love to hear about this boy's day on our walks home from school.
Drive tour of Fort Collins!
The Christmas lights are up downtown and it's beautiful.

Westin's teacher sent home some challenge work,
and he loved it.

Michael took down our unused satellite dish and all the wiring,
and it really does look so much better.
I painted the exterior where the wires had been painted over,
and Ali snapped a picture because "we look like homeowners". 
We feel like homeowners. #tired #grateful #soblessed #livelaughlove #jk
I distinctly remember doing this as a little kid.
It's just way too cold to get out of that towel and get dressed.
Much better to stay in the fetal position.

Grandpa time at Ali's new house!

Clean babies!
Camden loves a good game of peek-a-boo.
He also LOVES Michael and his grandpas. He's taking after Westin, who was also a super sexist baby.
It's fine. I'm fine.

I slept on Ali's couch, Camden in her laundry room, the boys in Elise's room, Elise in her closet, my parents in the guest room. She tucked me in each night and I even wore the Snuggie from our Boston days. I love being at my sister's house.
Westin thought the Snuggie was bizarre. He's not wrong.

Grandkids are exhausting :)
Thank goodness for those Wild Kratts breaks and a recharge.
Oh how I know that feeling well, dad :)
This will be one of my favorite grandpa moments forever.
Camden woke up around 10pm, which he never does, and wouldn't settle back down.
I tried to give him a drink and make him happy again, but he wasn't having it.
Grandpa went in and calmed him down right away. I assumed he was getting him to sleep,
when after a few minutes my dad comes around the corner with a wide awake and happy Camden, and says, "... I just don't know what to do." Camden was so bright-eyed and pleased with himself,
and Ali and I could not stop laughing. Sweet, sweet grandpa. Too much of a softie to not hold a sad, crying Camden! He went down pretty easily a bit later. Camden kept scooting all around the house to get to grandpa, then put his hands up wanting to be picked up by him. So, so cute.

Watching Jaren speak. He did great!
Sweet Lewis!

Sunday, November 8, 2020

Happy Birthday Michael + Visitors!!

Happy birthday, Michael! He went to work on Tuesday and we made him falafel for his birthday dinner. I got him a neck & shoulder massager for his birthday because he keeps saying he needs to take up Yoga so his hunched-over job doesn't turn him into an old man. Westin and Bennett had helped me pick out a Neighborhood Beekeeping book for him, too. They like visiting the local bee/honey shop because if you find the queen bee in their observation hive then you get to choose a flavored honey stick.

I did an accent wall start to finish by myself this week, and I felt proud of my first solo power tool day! I put a geometric trim pattern on my green wall and painted it the same color green, to give it some texture. I also added some details into our half bath that I stenciled last week. Every week the house looks more like I've pictured it in my head. And now I know that I'm more comfortable with a miter saw and a nail gun than I am with a drill. I'll never understand that. I also took a curtain rod that the sellers had left, and cut a part off of it with my jigsaw so that it didn't look like a boob anymore. Then I sanded it and spray painted it, and now we can buy curtains for the front room. Except choosing curtains and rugs is too hard, so, I'll just keep adding curtains to my cart from a bunch of stores without ever really pulling the trigger for a while.

On Saturday, Ali and Matthias and Elise arrived! I love when family come to our house! We had just left an outdoor neighborhood birthday party (where Bennett spilled hot chocolate which bounced all over me and Westin... some days are just a bigger struggle than others), and we were so happy to come home to family getting here. Baby Elise is so stinking cute, and she and Camden seem like twins since she's so determined and mobile. She loves to stroke his hair... and then pull it. Hehe. We have to referee them but they are so cute to see together, especially on their little high chair dates. We're looking forward to their visit this week!!


Before and after!

Splotchy because I just painted it. But I love it!
Election week.
We look at red and blue state maps so much,
but it's important to remember that land doesn't vote and all counties are different.
This visual was helpful for me.
Also, following the election for days and then getting results felt like I stopped holding my breath for the first time in four years. The physical feeling I felt Saturday was so surprising to me.

I love this boy and he's such a sweetie. But he's also pretty high maintenance lately, and, well,
just had to document it. I don't want to scroll through this blog someday and just weep for my little people to be little again. I want to feel grateful these days happened and grateful for new stages...
pics like this will probably help :)
We finally got a new vacuum, since ours was working less and less every time we forced it to keep trying to do its job. I know this is disgusting. But you guys, it is so fun to vacuum with a WORKING vacuum.

Two weeks ago I didn't know at all what I wanted to do in here,
and someday I might do something different and remodel it more,
but this little temporary and basically free option is making me really happy.

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