Monday, September 30, 2013

Of Sore Muscles and Sentiments...

I'm kind of having an emotional breakdown/berserk moment here.  My kids have been flipping through the pages of our family books lately and yelling out things like, "YOOK!  There's baby Kael!" or "OH!  Baby Daxi is so 'COOT'!"  It is amazing and adorable that they are old enough to know that they were once those tiny babies peering back up at them from the pages.  All but Acers, who insists that every baby is "Baby Weston" from across the street.  :)

Every time they open those books I feel nostalgia creep in with all it's happy achiness.  It's like having a sore rear after doing a few sets of lunges... good and bad all wrapped up into one sensation.  So, I've learned to smile at the images within and then close the books and look at the same boys who are here - just bigger and much more talkative.  And smile even bigger.

I've been mindful of my sentimental side my whole life.  It's masked with loud laughter and animated stories, but it's there, nonetheless, especially at the close of each day when I am acutely aware of the sunset and another twenty-four hours written for the history books.  I'm learning to nurture that sentimental sappiness for growing babies and change into a good thing.  

I want it to serve as a motivational tool rather than a rut that makes me yearn for yesterday or focus too much on how quickly time is passing.  Because I'm pretty sure that focusing too much on how quickly time is passing, and mourning the fact that it's gone, only makes it exponentially worse.  

Besides... right now is awesome with a side of fan-freakin'-tastic.  
So onward, ever onward we go.
A new day.  A clean slate.  A fresh season.
Whatever will we write in our chapter this week?

Friday, September 27, 2013

A Variety Show...

A smorgasbord of variety today...
Because it's the spice of life, you know.

Making:  Zuchinni Mini Muffins.  Acey devours them and calls them cookies.

 A little Ring around the Rosies looks like this... half strangulation half fun.

Cooking:  Last night?  Hawaiian Haystacks.  I can basically eat my weight in the good stuff.  Which defeats the whole "serve up healthy meals" thing... but alas.

Drinking:  Jacked Diet Cokes.  Heard of 'em?  H.E.A.V.E.N.  Diet coke spiked with sugar free coconut flavor.  Mmmmm.

Reading:  Would you judge if I listed off the Llama Llama books?  Because that's about it... for real.  I'm open to suggestions.

Ready for school.  So dang handsome I could just MOOSH him.

Wanting:  A night off.  JACKPOT!  Going out with a good girl friend tonight once the Mister returns from a work trip.  Holy smokes I'm giddy.

Looking:  At snow on our mountains.  My boys are basically wildlife watcher ninjas and they informed me as they were scoping out the landscape Wednesday afternoon that the seasonal change is official thanks to our blanketed mountain peaks.

Playing:  Play Doh.  Cold weather equals the return of the ice cream shop.

Wasting:  Time on Pinterest each evening.  Although, as I listen to my two biggest littles talk and sit "pinning" outside their bedroom door it feels like anything but a waste.

Wishing:  For shutters.  I cleaned the blinds yesterday and I literally feel as if the odds are 50/50 whether I will clean the blinds or cut off my left arm.

Cute helpers do, in fact, maybe change the odds to 52/48 in favor of blinds.

Enjoying:  My flower pots full of yellow mums.  They just make me happy flanking my garage door and lining my porch.

Waiting:  To download a new (to us) TV series to watch with my boyfriend in the post baby bedtime hours.  Ahhh the golden hours.  But what should we watch?  Do tell.

Liking:  The change of season.  The crisp air feels good despite my protests to summer's end.

Wondering:  What we'll do tomorrow.  We need a big adventure after we show off our soccer skills.  Kaelster has requested his favorite Mexican restaurant.  Atta boy Big K...

Loving:  My hubs. {Mush fest coming} He's fairly dreamy all being a sexy daddy-o and providing this fairytale life of mine.  Absence makes the heart grow fonder.  Get home already!

Hoping:  For less discard piles.  The outsides of Oreos, the Smartie wrappers, the shoes and socks x 3, the random Batman in my shower, the occasional car in the bed.  You know.  The discard piles.

Marveling:  At my BIG little boys.  The things they DO!  The things they SAY!  I never in my wildest dreams thought motherhood would make me laugh so often or so hard.

Smelling:  Lemon Oil.  'Twas time to oil the cabinets again.  OK, probably premature but I'm addicted to the sheen and smell of it all.

Wearing:  Jeans & a Baseball Tee.  I mean really, is there anything else?

Following:  Around my little posse of men cleaning up toilets.  Is it possible the urine smell has made it's way beneath the tiles?

Is it possible that the lashes have grown even longer and the lips pursier?

Noticing:  My affinity for all things microfiber.  Can I even clean with a regular old rag now?  Barely...

Knowing:  The holidays are coming... can I start shopping or is that just ridiculous?

Thinking:  I am in a good spot.  Which logically gets me wondering when the other shoe will drop?  Why is that?

The natural fashion blogger and his avante gard get up.  Kudos little fierce one.

Bookmarking:  Little man herringbone vests for a possible family picture idea I have.

Opening:  The door to my neighbor who comes bearing gifts... pint sized perfectly ripened pears!  OH PEARS!

Giggling:  All the time, but unfortunately the hot topic of the now is potty words.  "Pee Pee"  followed by chorus of giggles?

The new "take my picture" smile.  It slays me.

Feeling:  Incredibly blessed.  And happy.  And fulfilled.  Who knew these years as a full-time Wifey & Mom would really end up being my schtick?  Lucky girl, I am.

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Something New...

Want to know what makes me really nervous?
Putting myself out there.
I know that sounds like the world's biggest farce since I do, in fact, write on a regular basis about my darling family and all that being a family entails here.
But to me, this is just like talking to my neighbor across the street or calling my friends or sisters to chat about life.  It's what I do day in and day out.  It's comfy and safe.

But I'm jumping into the Blogosphere in what I hope to be a more professional way and it basically terrifies me.  To say, "Hey, I really would like you to check in," and "Hey, I hope you find this to be a bright spot in your day," and "Hey, will you spread the word and help me make this puppy work?"
I feel like I'm standing buck naked in the middle of Times Square for all to see.

So at the risk of sounding needy (oh wait, I am) or clueless (oh yes, that's also true) or GULP, hopeful?
You know what would make me really just punch drunk happy?

You, giving us a shot.
Will you do me a solid and check out a new blog-venture I'm having with my bestie over at:

And if you likey, just come on back again and again and tell another sista friend or twelve.
Okey Dokey.
Pride Swallowed.
Fingers Crossed.
Thanks a million in advance.
And good joo-joo all the way around.

Monday, September 23, 2013

A Birthday Weekend...

In mostly pictures and few words... not just because a picture is worth a thousand of them, but because I took nearly that many.  :)  You've been warned.

We started the weekend with cousins at the Extreme Air Trampoline place.   We were extreme air virgins... but no more, baby.

To say these little men of mine loved it would be the understatement of the year.  I was floored with their fearless approach to all things trampoline.  

I had to pry Kael's little fingers off of the trapeze swing when our time was up.  Those ninety minutes just didn't add up to getting our fill, apparently, so I'm sure we'll be back.

 I guess that means we'll be signing up for gymnastics this winter.  And crossing our fingers that some of our excess energy is burned in the effort of crawling out of the foam pits.  

We spent Saturday celebrating our little two-year-old with our amazing families.  He was a complete ham and loved all the attention and the little friends.  Everyone who came got the same greeting...
"Hi!  I Two."
We here at the Gardner household call that a Strike.  He bowled 'em over that one.

We had an airplane party and our little Captain didn't seem to mind a bit.  In fact, decorating "airplanes" also known as apple boxes seemed to be his favorite activity of the afternoon.

Saturday night was the big rivalry game.  Although, 0 for 4 sure doesn't it make it seem like much of a rivalry for the BYU fans among us.  Look at these pictures of Grandpa Hooky and Grandpa Bob... 

You know, that big old cranium of Grandpa Hooky's is just gonna get bigger and bigger thanks to this weekend's game.  But it sure is fun to listen to them razz each other.

And Mother Nature left one of the loveliest Indian Summer days for our big event, for which we were very grateful.  Partying hard in the yard is just that much better with kids, you know?  Walls and houses are so darn confining.  :)

We felt the love for sure.  I'm awfully glad for these dates on the calendar that make for an afternoon of nothing but family, food, sugar and silliness.  For no other reason than to celebrate life.
Because, man... we have a good one.

So let the community cake eating, the group present opening and the dual airplane piloting begin.

And this little two-year-old?  He's so handsome I can't get over him.

Happy Monday.
Happy Fall.

Friday, September 20, 2013

Ace Levi is 2...

This is it.  My last morning with a one-year-old.
At 1:20 pm, exactly two years ago, we welcomed Ace into our lives.  And he's been an easy, breezy slice of perfection ever since.

{You know, with the exception of the binkies.
Which will be given to the neighbor baby after this, the big birthday weekend. }
Wish us Luck!

At two years old, Mister Acers loves animals.  Especially horses.  He will spot a horse and yell, "YOOK!  Horsey MOM!"  Until I repeat back, "Yes, Acey, There's a horsey!" because saying yes just doesn't cut it these days, you know.  He is very tenacious about his sentiments being repeated verbatim.  Which is tiresome and adorable all wrapped into one.

Acer's loves his brothers.  When I get him from his crib every morning he snuggles into my shoulder and neck and says, "Hi Mommy."  Then he quickly pops his little head back up and asks about the whereabouts of the family, but most specifically, his buddies.
"Where's K-O, Mom?"
"Where's Daki?"
Be still my heart.

Ace is a carnivore.  He loves meat and will scoop hot dog bites by the handful and shove them into his cheeks like a chipmunk preparing for winter.  He prefers "meats" for every meal but we try to throw in a grape or two here and there when we can.  Aside from meat, he will eat a cookie any time of the day or a donut (or three) at any given opportunity.

Ace is typically a happy go lucky little lad, but lately, he's shown his finesse for the tantrum when he REALLY wants something.  His brothers are kind of taken aback by his recent passionate outbursts and usually cave in to his requests for whatever it is his little heart desires; and in that way, little man has sort of become the boss.

His favorite show is "Wittow Einsteins" and he knows the words to the opening song.  He also pats his lap and yells "Blast OFF!" for that little rocket ship as if his efforts are the very thing that will propel the red rocket into orbit.  He sings along to the radio even if he doesn't know the words and shimmies his little heiny or bounces to any beat we ever hear.   He's kind of like the music to my soul is what he is.

Amongst my favorite Ace phrases are:
"I want MOY Mom" & "Shut da DOY Mom"
More and Door are so cumbersome, you know?
And I love/heart/adore/gush over the way he says, alligator.  It's unmatched in cuteness and not even remotely close to being correct.... "Agony-n" or "Agonine".

There's about a zillion perks to being this little dude's Mom.  But mostly, you should just know that this kid is made up of unearthly amounts of goodness.  And no lie, up until about a month ago, I said firmly, "NO MORE BABIES." 

And now?
If you could promise me they'd all be like little man Ace a' Spades... I'd have at least three more.

Oh Ace Face, Happy Second Birthday to YOU!
We're so glad you're ours.
May TWO bring you double the fun, little one.

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Gang Stuff...

Little Man Dax knows way too many words ALMOST perfectly.

RyGar frequently greets each little with a, "What up Gangsta?" when he gets home each evening.  And now this little man says, "What up Gang-stuff?" to any and all neighbors and friends he greets on a daily basis.  It is hilarious.

He also says, "Grandma JAM-ice" and Lightning "Da-Queen" and "Fall-Love Me" instead of Follow me... no matter the number of times we politely try to correct him, he reverts to his adorable old ways.  Whaddya do?  I usually just smile and ask him to say it again.  :) 

And on a completely unrelated note, Kaelster actually caught and preserved a grasshopper yesterday.  I don't really know what came over him, but he asked, "Can I have a jar to put him in?"  I quickly complied before any limbs were lost and he generously shoved a few blades of grass inside before we sealed it up with some plastic wrap & some twisty ties, complete with a few air holes in the top.  He was thrilled.  That grasshopper had the privilege of accompanying Kaelster to collect the mail, to cruise on a neighborhood bike ride and to sleep next to the piggy bank.  It was the life of luxury for a grasshopper at the Gardner residence.

And then this morning, on our way to Preschool, Kaelster just couldn't resist and he poked a Kaelster- paw-sized hole in the plastic wrap and holy moly if that grasshopper didn't seize his opportunity.  I turned back at the "OH NO!" exclamation from big man and saw that green thing flaunt his ginormous will to live and hop out of the jar and out of the window of our moving vehicle.  It was somethin' if I do say so myself.

Kaelster was quiet for a minute and then he said, 
"Uh Oh, he better get out of the road, or he'll get hit by a car."  :)

Ace a Spade's favorite phrase of the moment is, "What doing Mom?"  And he says it about one gazillion times a day.  His inflection is spot on and when I return the query he gets all shy and thoughtful and starts his response with, "Ummmm, I talkin' to Mommy", or "Soooo, I'm just playin"... it slays me dead.  

And you guys, I'm planning his SECOND birthday party?  What the?  I give up on this crazy ride we call the evolution of time.  This vortex is about to take my breath away.

Soooo, Ummm, we are now on the hunt through our hood full of "gang-stuffs" to find a new pet grasshopper for the posh empty jar that sits next to the piggy bank waiting it's next guest.  It's a tall order that we intend to fill.

Wish us luck!