8 Months Old Already!

I can hardly believe how fast time has gone by. Some people have said, "It's because he's such a good baby..." and well, yeah, that's part of it I'm sure...but it's also because he's #3 and life is just busier and seems to go by in a blur sometimes!

Drew is such a happy kid...a little fussy due to teething, but other than that he's usually mellow and such a sweetie! He is such a good sleeper - THANK GOODNESS - and I hope it stays that way! He's actually our first baby that has slept in his crib the longest. Jakob and Joshy were total swing babies. They just didn't seem to want to lay down flat in a crib -- Jakob until he was about 5 months old I think, and Joshy, until about 8-9 months. (SHEESH!)

I think I wrote that he started crawling on Father's Day...well by the end of that week, he was trying to pull himself up on things...the couch, his crib, the pack 'n play, etc. Ever since he figured out he could move around, he has been on the go and I can see trouble brewing in his eyes! Maybe he won't stay so mellow after all? We'll see. I took a few pics of him today trying to reach some toys on the train table...and then chewing on a bubble blower that he spotted and crawled to...he was a man on a mission! It's so cute to see him growing and developing and I love to hear him babbling, "Ma ma ma ma ma..." Yep, the first one to say "mama" first. The other boys said "dada" first. He's 100% Mama's boy! :)


Baby Jill

Some of you may know that I have been trying to sharpen my photographic skills...and I have been lucky enough to have friends who let me use them and their kiddos as subjects to practice on!

Here are a few pics of my friend Jodi's new baby girl, Jill. She is such a cutie pie and it was so much fun taking her pictures!

Thanks girls! I hope you like how they turned out!


Be Of Good Cheer

Lately I've been thinking about how it really is my choice to be happy. Yes, circumstances can affect my attitude, therefore making me unhappy, but ultimately, it is MY CHOICE to be happy.

As a mother of 3 energetic boys, I sometimes find myself feeling pushed beyond my limits of patience, hope, and my own energy. I often find that when I step back for a moment (in my mind) and think that, "This isn't really that important to freak out about..." then I am able to stay calm, and usually results in everyone being happy.

We've all heard that "the mother sets the tone for the family." Well, I know that is so true...and at times feel like that is a big burden for me to bear because I am not always happy! But I've seen things run more smoothly at home when I am feeling happy, optimistic and hopeful. Even when other things are crappy, if I choose to overcome those angry feelings or depressed feelings, then things always seem to work out. I know that goes hand in hand with just having the simple faith that the Lord will stand by us as he promised:

"Wherefore, be of good cheer, and do not fear, for I the Lord am with you, and will stand by you;" (D&C 68:5)

This promise is made many times throughout the scriptures, and we all know that we learn by repetition. So at this time in my life, I guess I'm supposed to be re-learning how to choose to be happy. Of course I know it isn't merely a mental choice that will make me happy, it's physically doing those things that are in accordance to God's will that will ultimately bring me the happiness that I seek.

I googled "be of good cheer" and found a blogger who actually posted something that I found quite interesting. Here is part of what he said:

"The idea of “good cheer” is derived from the Greek word tharsei, and the meaning of “cheer” is very different from what we associated today with that word. Tharsei meant “to dare to be bold,” “to take courage,” “to replace fear with hope.” The word tharsei is so old, it can even be seen in Homer’s Odyssey.

With all the crap going on in the world right now, and with the knowledge that it will continue to get worse until the Savior comes again, thinking of "good cheer" as was described above definitely helps me see why the phrase "be of good cheer" was used so many times in the scriptures.

For me personally, the most important reason to be of good cheer is for the benefit of my family. Because I love them and want them to be happy also, I must first be happy myself.


Like a moth to a flame...

If there's dirt, mud or sand around, you can bet Joshy will be in it. On Wednesday he was in the mud at least 5 or 6 times...we had to change clothes each time...Yesterday, it was only this once, and I actually was level headed enough to snap a few pics...

Oh well. I can handle cleaning up muddy messes. I am slowly learning how to take these things in stride -- and yes, I have 3 kids. You'd think I would have chilled out a bit by now...nope. I'm still pretty high strung sometimes. But as their mother, I want to be able to savor all of the memories...sweet and sour...because these years are flying by too fast already!!

A friend of mine (a mother of 2 little boys) says that she works from "son up, to son down."



Two Little Monkeys

Jakob and Kai have been buddies forever it seems like...and here they are acting silly up in a tree at the park yesterday...it's a little frightening to see them climbing up in trees...but that's part of childhood in my opinion! You haven't lived until you've climbed a few trees!!


Daily Gem


"When Jesus gave His disciples a new commandment to 'love one another; as I have loved you,' (John 13:34), He gave to them the grand key to happiness in this life and glory in the next.

"Love is the greatest of all the commandments--all others hang upon it. It is our focus as followers of the living Christ. It is the one trait that, if developed, will most improve our lives."

(Joseph B. Wirthlin, "The Great Commandment," Ensign, Nov. 2007, 30-31)


Father's Day

I have always had grand ideas/high hopes/big expectations/or whatever you want to call it -- and because that is part of my type-A personality, I tend to get frustrated easily when things aren't quite going the way I envisioned them... Well, after attempting to get some pics of the boys as a possible Father's Day gift for Brad, I seriously almost blew a gasket. (Look at Drew in the last one, and that's pretty much a mirror image of me "throwing my hands up" and giving up) But...in all honesty, this kind of captures their true essence:

Jakob PROMISED me that next time we take pictures, he will smile and look at the camera... Joshy on the other hand, couldn't care less. In fact he was kind of dazed throughout most of this. Drew...well, he's just a little bundle of joy!! He is easy, he just sits there! (Well actually, he just crawled for the first time at church yesterday!!!!!!!!!!)
So, for Father's Day, we had a yummy breakfast, with french toast (made with that delish cinnamon swirl bread from Costco), bacon, cantaloupe and OJ. Brad got to sleep in until almost 9am -- so I hope he enjoyed his relaxing morning. Jakob was so excited to give him his gift that he made at school. It's a frame made with popcicle sticks and seashells, with his picture in it. So cute! I gave Brad the Biggest Loser Power Sculpt DVD along with some hand weights. He's been saying he's wanted the weights for a while now, and when I saw the DVD I thought it would complete the gift perfectly! I can't wait to work out together! (For any of you in FV3, we will be competing in next year's Triathalon!) :)
After church we had some delicious dinner made by me -- ha ha -- nothing special, really. But then I had fun putting together a fruit pizza -- and even cut the strawberry in the middle into a heart shape. (Brad didn't notice...he just ate it!) So, we tried to get a few pics of the big boys with Daddy...and here's what we got:

It was a busy, but fun weekend. My brother and sister-in-law (Matt & Sheri) came in town and were staying with us. It was cool to get to spend more time with Sheri again...that chick rocks! I'm so glad she's part of the family. Brad got to go golfing with his brothers, and I know that was really fun for him. If you know the Hansons, then you know they love to play games...so we stayed up late every night playing games, and Todd even brought over his Wii -- Mario Kart Rules!! Anyway...I am pooped. I went to bed at 2am last night (this morning?) and it is seriously taking it's toll right now! But I really wanted to get some stuff posted about my honey...the daddy of my boys...and love of my life.

We all love you so much...and are so blessed to have you!!!


Sorry if this is old news...

The Breaking Dawn Concert Series

featuring Stephenie Meyer
with Special Performance by Justin Furstenfeld from Blue October

In less than three years, Stephenie Meyer has become a worldwide publishing phenomenon—writing the internationally bestselling Twilight Saga. To celebrate the release of Breaking Dawn—the fourth and final book in the Saga—Little, Brown and Company invites fans to participate in an evening of story and song with Meyer and singer/songwriter Justin Furstenfeld of Blue October.

(Click here to read the official press release in its entirety.)

The event is designed to give fans a truly unique, one-of-a-kind experience by featuring music that inspired Meyer while writing the Twilight Saga. Music has played such a strong role in the writing of the series that Meyer has created playlists for each novel. Special musical guest Furstenfeld will perform several songs featured on these playlists, including "Sound of Pulling Heaven Down," the platinum-selling "Hate Me", and "Overweight".

The evening will also include a Q&A and autographing with Meyer.
August 7, 2008; 8:00 p.m. (Doors 7:00 p.m.)
Los Angeles, Royce Hall (UCLA)

**Attendees are allowed to bring one Stephenie Meyer book from home (Twilight, New Moon, Eclipse or Breaking Dawn), books will not be sold on-site. Stephenie will only autograph one book per person—no personalizations, exceptions or substitutions. No cameras allowed during the autographing.

Tickets go on-sale at 10:00 a.m. PDT on June 21st online.

It's only $20!!!!

Anyone interested in going with me?? :)

Sidenote: Brad just rolled his eyes at me when he saw what I was posting. Sorry, honey! But I missed both the LA and San Diego book signings because we were in Utah. :( So I was stoked to hear about this!!!


J is for Joshy

Joshy is an especially funny boy. He is SO enthusiastic about things and gets so excited when he talks, which usually means he talks very loudly! I know it sometimes makes people a little uncomfortable, or annoyed even, and so I've kind of gotten into the habit of sssshhing him and asking him to talk quietly please. When this happens, he usually replies with a whisper, "Who's sleeping?" :)

I love how cuddly he is, and always has been...I know there will be a time when he outgrows it, and will no longer want me to lay next to him (on his tiny toddler bed) and run my fingers through his hair. I know there will be a time when he no longer comes down in the middle of the night, or very, very early in the morning and stands next to my bed saying, "Scoooooot. Mom, scoooot!" He likes to snuggle and loves to wrap his arms around my neck while we're laying down (as if I could ever fall asleep like that!) -- and sometimes just grabs my face with both hands, squeezing my cheeks.

I hope I never forget how sweet his little face looks when he catches me smiling at him - and he shyly giggles and turns away...only to peek back at me a second later to see if I'm still smiling. I love how blue his eyes are with long black eyelashes.

I love how ever since I told him I wasn't a piggy (when he asked for a "piggy back ride") that he asks for "mommy back rides" -- usually at bedtime when his legs supposedly don't work anymore and he can't walk up the stairs.

This little ball of energy running, jumping, climbing - and everything in between - all around my house, is such a sweet little boy. I look forward (with a bit of sadness) to see what an incredible man he will grow into.

This morning, after my walk, we went to the park and went on the swings together. He just squealed with glee whenever our swings were in sync...eyes squinting, nose scrunched up, head thrown back, laughing. I was wishing I had my camera...but memory of that moment will suffice.

I love spending one on one time with each of my boys...I love to smother them with kisses and hugs and make them laugh and be silly. I hope and pray that they will always remember those fun special times that we have together...and know most importantly that I will love them always.


Our Utah Trip

We recently took a trip up to Utah to visit family, and to attend my brother's graduation from the U of U Medical School. (Way to go!!) He surprised us all when the graduates were filing in and going to their seats and he and one other girl went up on the stage and sat down. I was like, "What is he doing???" So I grabbed the program, and low and behold, my brother was Co-Class President! AND he was giving a speech! That little rascal! His speech was hilarious - check it out on his blog. He is going to do his residency in Anesthesiology at the Univ. of Texas in San Antonio - I can't remember the full name. But, we are super excited for them, and hope to come visit them (and a few old friends) some day!

After the ceremony, we headed up to a luncheon in Ogden with the whole fam...YUMMY! Then we hung out over at my parents' house in Layton and later had family pics taken. I can't wait to see how they turned out!

Brad's cousin Jarom and his wife Liina were also graduating the same day -- funny, huh? So we got to visit with them, and then on Sunday went to their ward for the blessing of their new baby girl. They are off to South Carolina -- Good Luck guys!

For Memorial Day, we revived our Greek Fest tradition and my bro-in-law Curtis whipped up some yummy greek food for everyone. We hung out over at my Aunt & Uncle's house in Orem and the kids swam and played all afternoon. It was delish and so much fun! We had a fun time staying with my sister Heather...it was the first time and I hope not the last! Jakob and Joshy loved sliding down the slide they have off their deck in the backyard -- dang it, no picture of that! And Joshy had so much fun with Hannah's cat, S'mores who he affectionately called "Snores." We'll miss you guys! Thanks for everything!

On Tuesday we packed up and went over to stay at Brad's folks' house in Lehi. Brad's sister Sara and her kids have been living there for a while, (while her husband commutes from San Jose) and so my kids couldn't wait to get over there to play with their cousins. Wednesday morning, Brad went golfing with his brother, and while they were gone, all the kids were out gardening with Grama. It was pretty funny! But they loved it and Jakob got quite good at grabbing the weeds by the roots and shaking out the dirt.

Later that afternoon, they took the kids to this awesome park in Cedar Hills. The kids had a blas there and we hope to go again next time we come up! I can't believe we had never heard of it before!!!

Uncle Curtis was nice enough to take all the kiddos fishing this year...at Utah Lake. They caught quite a few white bass, and had fun throwing them back. Jakob's poor fish hit a rock and we thought it was dead...until about 5 minutes later it started flopping around and so I went to push it further into the water where it continued to float semi-upside down and swimming in circles. Poor fishy!

On Friday (our last day) we really packed it in! In the morning we went to the museum at Thanksgiving Point - one of my kids' favorite things to do. Then we drove up to Salt Lake, where we met a friend of mine for lunch at the Gateway. It was SO good to see her! Then we took Trax to Temple Square and walked around for a bit. The kids totally loved Trax, and I think we definitely need to do that again sometime. Later that night there was a neighborhood party, with bounce houses, BBQ and a band. It was a blast. The kids got totally worn out! (And so did we!)

We had such a fun time visiting everyone...wished my Dad could have been in town longer...but it was a great time. Thanks for everything, everybody! We love you!

For some pics...check out the slideshow below:

Check out my Slide Show!


Sneak Peek!

This is for all you Twilighters out there:


OH YEAH BABY, it's gonna be GOOD! :)

I just uploaded all the pics from our trip to Utah -- I think there were about 450...SHEESH! Needless to say, there will be a slideshow coming soon (and "soon" is a relative term...) :)