Friday, May 14, 2010

Olivia the Athlete?

Um, likely not. She's already scared of the ball.


And seriously, I'm not taking pleasure in torturing my's all in the name of a memory, right?

Sunday, May 9, 2010

My Mama

This is my mama. (She just turned 50. I know. Gorgeous.)

She is pretty amazing. No, seriously. She is. I come from a long line of incredibly strong women, and my mom is no exception. She has been through enough in her life to fill two lifetimes and then some.

I could go on and on about her kindness and strength and all her amazing qualities for days, but really, anyone can see these things about her. Her goodness is obvious. But what is most important to me, what I know about my mom is this:

Her faith has never faltered. Her relationship with the Lord is beautiful. She has never questioned her Savior, let her testimony waver, or doubt our Heavenly Father's love. Ever.

This unbending faith has been the best thing she has ever done for me.

Tears come to my eyes thinking about this; thinking about trials she endured with my dad, raising 3 teenage daughters, providing for us, giving us everything we needed when she probably did without, what she had to do alone, the fact that she still beats herself up for things she had no control over, having to fear things alone, to fight alone.....all of it...I don't know how she did it and still managed to keep her faith intact.

Mom, you did good. You really, really did.

Happy Mother's/Birthday! Thank you a million times over. You amaze me.


Saturday, May 8, 2010

A Bit More

Last night, like most nights, just before bed, Brandon and I stood over Olivia's crib soaking in the sweetness of our little baby. He touched her face, then I touched her face and we tip-toee out and into our room to settle down for the night. Prayers were said, scriptures read and we lay there curled up and talking about this and that.

Thinking about Liv I said, as I have said many times before, "Sometimes when I see her sleeping so peacefully like that, I just want to go get her and bring her into bed with us."

Brandon paused a moment, leaped out of bed and moments later walked back into our room, swaying back and forth and cradling Olivia. I watched him as he held her close for awhile before gently laying her between us, nestling her in the crook of my arm.

We lay there, the three of us, watching her sleep, bonding so quietly, so tenderly. I felt so overcome with love for my little family.

As Brandon and I drifted off to sleep I thought about all the many times things like this have happened. For whatever reason, the simple action of Brandon bringing her into our bed seemed a bit more profound and the tenderness in his actions spoke so loudly about the man I chose to spend eternity with, I felt myself fall a bit more in love with him.

I love him, I really love him.

Wednesday, May 5, 2010


When you get married you tend to acquire many new acquaintances/friends/relatives that you would never have had otherwise. This can be a totally wretched/annoying/uncomfortable situation depending on the type of people and quality of relationship the have with your new spouse. Or as in the case of Brandon....a totally awesome thing.

#1- Nichelle was the fist of my introductions to Brandon. Admittedly, I was slightly wary of meeting her as I had only known Brandon 2 days and already some other female was requiring attention from him. Um, excuse me? And then.....I met her. She was basically me with the volume turned {way} up! We both work with special needs kids, we're tall, we make everything funny (even when its not). We are kindred spirits, she and I, life long friends. I could not be more thrilled.

#2 through #7- The SIL's : Taunya, Rachel, Andrea, Brooke, and Tasha. Collectively they are quite the group. They are fun, interesting, smart, hilarious, and awesomely quirky and each one holds a special place in my life. This last year has been particularly special as Brooke, Tasha, and I all gave birth within two days of one another. I completely and utterly adore these two women (well, I adore all of them). We have been able to spend a lot of time together since I moved here, partly in thanks to daily morning workouts/venting/bonding sessions. Their friendships are therapeutic, needed, and loved. I share so much with them, they are truly some of my dearest friends and I could not be more pleased to call them my family and my friends.

#8- Brittney was introduced to Washington life around the same time I was. She had just moved here and was the girlfriend of one of Brandon's best friends. So, really, a friendship was inevitable. I am quite fond of this girl. She is quirky, genuinely funny, thoughtful, easy to get along with, sweet, and her southern accent makes her all the more endearing. She brings honest insight and comedic relief to many, many situations and I love having her awesome friendship in my life.

#9- Tami is a loooooong time friend of Brandon who I only met maybe twice before moving here. Her awesomeness was not lost on me as Brandon, Nichelle, and a few others talked her up to me on more than one occasion saying things like, "You guys should totally be friends." Thanks to the beauty that is the Internet (i.e. blogs and Facebook) we began to "follow" one anothers lives. After moving here, I'm pleased to say she hasn't let me down and has completely lived up to they hype. She really is that awesome. I have come to appreciate her honesty, our private conversations are meaningful, her thoughtfulness in difficult times is amazing (this has not been lost on me), and her friendship is something that, honestly, I just need. Simply put, she is a good friend to have in your corner and I'm thrilled to have her in mine.

10-Ginny....ok, so honestly, Ginny and I have never actually met (cause she lives in Arizona, sadly), but that is sort of irrelevant. Brandon knows her and again, thanks to the Internet, we became a part of each other's lives. We were also pregnant at the same time and had many, many, many conversations during and since our pregnancies. Basically, we are so alike its kind of alarming. Even our babies are alike. It's so weird. I have had so many honest, tender, and completely open conversations with her about almost anything you could think to talk about. I value her advice, which is always spot on. I admire her example and envy her talents and just love her to pieces.

Do you see what I mean? By marrying Brandon I have acquired some seriously awesome friends. Good work at picking awesome people to have in your life, Husband! I love all of them, I need all of them, I appreciate all of them. They have all changed my life in very specific ways. They help make my life so blessed.

**Original Friends: I still love you, too. Heaps and heaps.
**Oh, and ladies....I stole all the pictures off Facebook. Thanks ;)

Saturday, May 1, 2010

8 Months

Do I seriously have an 8 month old? Yeah. Yeah, I do. The last month or so has been rather eventful for Olivia. So here is her update.

*She has had 4 ear infections in the last 6 weeks.
*We discovered she has drug allergies to albuterol and amoxicillian.
*No weight gain in almost two months. She had actually lost weight at her check 2 weeks ago. She weighs 18 lbs 7 oz putting her in the 75th percentile, and she is 27 inches long putting her in the 64th percentile. Yep, pretty average considering both her parents are well above average in height.
*She is super flexible.
*She prefers to hold her own bottle and feed herself.
*She'll ham it up for your attention....and then ignore you.
*She has a definite sense of humor.
*She says Da Da, much to her daddy's delight.
*She doesn't crawl, but don't think she isn't mobile. She scoots around on her back like nobody's business.
*Strings, ribbon, paper, spoons, and mylar ballons are her absolute favorite toys. Hands down.
*We had a 2 week long trip to Utah and Colorado, where Olivia ruptured her eardrum. Sigh.
*She still squeaks.
*She is so, so wiggley.
*She has learned to protest.
*She smakes her lips and clicks her tongue like crazy (ok, she has been clicking for 4 months now, but its still hilarious).
*She whispers. I know.
*She will sometimes turn the pages of books before trying to eat them.

And now for picture overload.......