Monday, July 30, 2018


Isaac. Immediately, I loved you. Immediately caring for you, you were hard. The hardest. The most demanding and it was hard for me in more ways than I was used to as a mother. You have taught me more about motherhood and of myself in the past year than any of my other babies. My physical, emotional and mental health has shifted imperfectly beautiful to care for you and your brothers. I can hardly remember who I was or what our lives were like before you. You have added so much joy and happiness, love and excitement in all your milestones to each of our hearts. WE LOVE YOU!!! Happiest Birthday to you and to us. We made it!❤

((On a side note- This is the month that I planned to wean from my antidepressants that were prescribed for postpartum nearly a year ago. I accidentally weaned too quickly and STRUGGLED (this is an understatement) with the adjustment. I felt out of my mind, psychotic- I would explain it to Marshall that I felt as if I was in parallel dimensions at one time, brain zaps, confusion, delusion, paranoia, crying spells and sick like I had the flu, I am not kidding, I thought that I was going to die, it was the scariest experience! It took me a solid 3 weeks to feel like myself again. These experiences taught me to A) Wean SLOWLY (I planned to, but forgot to take my medicine 3 days in a row and at that point was elbow deep in withdrawal symptoms and the only way to feel better was to either take the meds or stick it out.-- I stuck it out. B) Withdrawals from medications are NO joke. It was worse than the ups and downs of being put on the medication in the first place. I should have asked for help and accepted help when I needed it. There were moments that I did not feel okay enough to take care of my kids. Marshall had to remind me that it was okay to lay down and let the boys watch some shows, which they did. This saved me. C) I have so much more compassion for people who struggle with any mental health issues since dealing with PPD. My eyes and ears and arms are open to anyone who needs help. ))

Isaac has grown into the coolest, easy going little guy. He is easy to make happy and the boys all adore him. None of us can keep our hands off of him.

Besides celebrating Isaac's first birthday, we also celebrated July 4th! 
We spent the morning at a church picnic until it started pouring. We laid low for the afternoon and invited ourselves over to a friends to shoot off some family friendly fireworks. It was so memorable and fun for all of us.

It was a long day-- as their faces will show you. It was just TOO much fun!

 We also continue on in our schooling, learning and growing throughout the summer.  Catching the boys all together looking at the same book happens a lot more often these days, and I love when I can snap a photo to remember it forever.

These guys, tying their ties.

One year check up. Healthy as a horse and I swear almost as big as a horse. This kid is massive compared to his brothers!

I will be sad for the day all my boys will need separate baths/showers. It's so darn convenient and also so adorable while it lasts. (I mean, for the first few minutes- then it's just wet and wild all over)

The boys are always so impressed by their own paper cutting skills and creations.

More Grilling!!!

The boys happen to love with Marshall is in the bathroom getting ready.

I had an amazing opportunity to speak/teach at the University of St.Thomas for a Youth Conference (Church of Jesus Christ of Latter day Saints)

I loved preparing and studying and presenting it and being around these kids.
I always think I get much more out of these things than my class but it was so cool to be involved with the event. 

It was nice that my friend, Julie could be with me. We were both so nervous and excited.

Marshall's company always throws a company picnic in the hot hot part of the summer. 

The boys obviously love all the delicious food, but also the park is a huge draw.

As I consider the upcoming homeschool year ahead, especially with Eli being an official student, I made the space in our home more purposeful. New chairs, new comfy reading chair, more bookcases. I've been minimizing a LOT and aspiring to be a minimalist. 
Living in an older home without much storage has forced us to live minimally and I have learned to love the challenge.

And... In the midst of purging and tossing... This castle was an arts and crafts project of mine that escalated a little too quickly.

It didn't have a long life as the boys pretended to be soldiers and dragons and it crashed and was destroyed not long after.

Isaac is a ham at church. Won't let you hold him, won't stay close. He is a rascal.

The boys took a 2 week swim lesson session (the very last week of July- First week of August) with a teen from our church. They loved her. She was so great  with them and they were so much more comfortable in the water after learning from her.

We only had one incident where Eli slipped into the water and no one noticed until it was almost too late. We have all learned from it, and now know to not EVER get into the deep end without making sure a grown up or teacher is watching you. 

Oliver did fantastic! I was so proud of how brave he was and I loved watching how much fun he had in the water. 

On their last day, I took them out to lunch. Marshall was out of town for 3 days (backpacking/ camping/hiking trip on the Superior Hiking trail)  and I tried to spend as much time out of the house with the boys as I could. 

Marshall and Ezra ran in the Ralph Reeder 5k. I am not exactly sure how much they ran or walked for, but they are running in this photo and that says a lot!:) Ezra LOVED running with dad.

The boys wrapped up their summer soccer season together. It was a pretty crazy calendar with these two in soccer with practices and games. Marshall does a great job making sure everyone gets where they need to be.

If there is a fire truck anywhere, the boys MUST stop to check it out. This was no exception.

And if you are wondering what it looks like to run a quick errand with the boys....
I prefer to shop online.

Saturday, June 30, 2018


June was jam packed and filled with all the summery things.

The boys went camping with Marshall one weekend. They had an amazing time, you can just sense it from the photos. I am so happy Marshall was able to get pictures. (Somehow I lost all my photos from June) The Boys went to Willow River State Park in Wisconsin.

The photos from their trip look so breathtakingly beautiful. I am so jealous of these awesome experiences that they are all having together.

Sadly, I wasn't here to witness this in it's glory, but apparently, Eli said to Marshall at this moment, "UH.... Dad.. we have a sticky situation, here" And Marshall laughed and laughed and laughed.

While the older boys were camping, I took Oliver and Isaac with me to a friends get together.

Marshall took the boys to the splash pad on another super hot Saturday afternoon. They always love the splash pad.

We finally got a new grill. We have been spoiling ourselves with super fancy meats, burgers, shrimp and all sorts of bbq joy. We were really missing out!

The boys started soccer at the end of the month. It takes a while for Eli to get comfortable on the field. He said to Marshall one day after Marshall asked what his favorite part of the game was "I really just like being with you and Ezra" Such a genuine comment. He just likes the bonding time with his dad and brother.

Front and center.

Ezra is getting a lot more confident on the field. We have a deal- if they score a goal, we celebrate with ice cream at DQ! 
Looks like someone score a goal!

June was the month we got Oliver his big boy bed! 
We have a trundle that pulls out from under the bunk. He loves being next to his brothers and it really wasn't a hard transition for him. He is a rascal getting to stay in his bed once in a while. But they are all usually so worn out and exhausted that they all pass right out.

Ezra stole Marshall's phone and took some selfies of us at church waiting for it to start. 

For Father's day, Marshall took the boys to the Soda Shop for a free Dads Rootbeer. The boys had sodas and played 

I appreciate Marshall as a husband, as a teammate, and as a friend. As a father- I appreciate him more than I can say. He is such a genuine example of goodness to the boys. They are so blessed to have an active, loving, present, father who everything he does, believes, sacrifices is for his children and his family. We are so grateful for him and it is only fitting that we celebrate him not only on Father's day, but everyday

The boys hogpiled in the bed on Fathers Day Morning

Marshall and I were able to get away for the afternoon to see a movie with my sister, her husband and my parents. I can't believe my baby sister is 30! 

Isaac love playing dress up just as much as his brothers.

Enjoying nature at the local nature center with the boys!

The boys loved playing with friends and their toys ;)

We were invited to watch one of our friends snakes be fed. It was awesome and gross and creepy and totally entertaining. 

It is amazing how such a little mouth can expand and swallow such a large mouse.
We loved it.

Marshall's parents offered to watch the boys for us for 24 hours so we could have a getaway. It took us forever to decide what we were going to do.
We decided to get dinner at our favorite place, Benihana. From there we went shopping for an upcoming camping trip for Marshall and then we headed to the hotel. (Which was a total bust- but can laugh about it) Late in the night we went to the Cheescake factory for dessert and the next morning we had a mission to find a new family van.

After many hours of decision making, we purchased a new van. (not this one)
It wasn't the funnest day of our lives, but we are so grateful for a new reliable vehicle for our family.

Here is Eli. I am fairly certain that his big brother dressed him like a little soldier.

June always wraps up quickly, especially with an exciting July up ahead.