summertime fun

Well, it’s been awhile since I’ve gotten around to updating this blog, so I’m going to cram the last couple months into this post.

First up: Luke’s debut at the local all-comers track meet.


You can see he was quite serious about it.

I don’t know if I can really ever stress it enough to people, but Luke loves running. Like, really loves running. I know all two year olds like to run around, but Luke loves running for the sake of running. He would run circles around our swingset all day long if someone ran with him.

So I thought the all-comers meet would be great. And he did like it – unless he hated it. He just didn’t quite grasp the concept of only running during your race. He got pretty worked up waiting for his races, and then again after his races when he had to stop running. So yeah. He’s two.


The “mini-jav” event. (Not pictured: his turn at the long jump pit, where he ran full speed and then veered into the other long jump pit (with the older kids) at the last second. Luckily it was clear at the time).


Running his 50m race with mama.


This guy keeps us on our toes, that’s for sure. We had our family vacation at the end of July, and it was great. We kicked it off with a day at the Point Defiance Zoo & Aquarium.


He’s started saying “cheese” for the camera, and I kinda love the smile it produces.


After a spending the night at Ian’s grandma’s house, we continued south to Seaside, OR. Ian’s mom met us down there the next day, and his brother Jamie’s family joined us a few days later. We had a great time – Luke loved playing on the beach.


IMG_6922He also rode the carousel numerous times.



We also made a trip out to the Tillamook Cheese Factory – Luke and I may have gone through the sample line a couple times.



Luke adores his older cousins, and whenever we walked anywhere, he’d quickly turn to find them so he could hold their hands.



Adorable Miss Reese loved playing in the kiddie pool. All the kids enjoyed lots of pool time – so nice that our resort had a shallow kids’ pool that they could happily play in.

Back home the next week, we attended a Bellingham Bells game with our small group. Things were going fine – Luke was running around with the other kids down in front of the fence along left field, where we were sitting.

Between innings midway through the game, they let all the kids run across the field, from left field to right field. Ian went with Luke, who of course loved it. And it was no surprise that he kept asking to do it again afterwards.

What was a surprise was when he and our friends’ kids managed to open the gate in the fence during the seventh inning stretch. Luke bolted and ran off onto the field, with Ian in fast pursuit. Luckily the ball wasn’t in play yet, and Ian managed to nab him to the sounds of the cheering crowd. One of our friends caught their exit on his phone.


Our next baseball outing was to the Ken Griffey Jr. Hall of Fame night at Safeco.


It was so great to see the pre-game ceremony. Luke even enjoyed the first 10 minutes (having dinner didn’t hurt either).


After those 10 minutes, the kid got squirrelly and spent the first half of the game running up and down the ramps and escalators with Oma. Eventually he was able to watch part of the game from our seats. He really just wanted to run on the field himself, no surprise there.



A couple weeks ago we took Luke to his first fair! He loved seeing all the animals.



He got to ride one ride, the carousel. He was pretty pumped about it.


We went with our good friends, “Papa Frank and Nana,” who rank very high in Luke’s world, since they often babysit him. (And yes, it was raining pretty hard, so we all got pretty soaked – Luke’s hair got super curly!)


And of course the other big news around our house is that we are expecting baby #2! We were super surprised and excited to find out that I was pregnant – I’ll have to write more about it later, but here are some photos for now. This was me at 12 weeks along, just a little bump and a face that portrays the first trimester exhaustion/nausea that I was feeling.


And this is Luke when I was 12 weeks, he stepped right up to have his photo taken, with deep seriousness…


And both of us a couple weeks ago, when I was 18 weeks…

IMG_7094I think that’s about all I can muster for an update right now! We are all happy and healthy and usually incredibly tired at the end of each day (I think that has to do with all the running and chasing that happens around here!). Hope your summer is going as great as ours!

entering into summer

Things are in full summer mode in our house now (well, except the weather, which is drizzly and overcast today). We’ve been busy working and playing outside, keeping up with Luke, and embracing summertime fun.

IMG_6589We added another raised vegetable bed and a couple wine barrels to our garden so we have more veggies this year. As always, we probably started a little later than we should have, so hopefully everything still works out okay. Luke loved using the new garden bed as his own personal play space for a couple days. Then he helped Ian plant seeds, which he loved. Almost every time we are outside he “plants seeds!” by moving around dirt or whatnot with his shovel. He will also walk around the yard asking what different plants are called – definitely his father’s son.

IMG_6597_2The kiddo also takes after his dad in his love for smoothies. He’s also mastered a pretty awesome “cheese” face.



And he turned 2! We had a family bbq at my parent’s house, which worked out well since they are on the south side of the Skagit River bridge, which wasn’t fixed at the time, and Ian’s family all lives south of there. Luke loved seeing all his family, getting lots of attention, food, and some great play time with his older cousin Isabel.



On Fathers Day we headed over to a local berry farm for their Strawberry Festival. We enjoyed free strawberry sundaes and Luke enjoyed a few turns on the tractor train. He is kind of obsessed with driving lately – he recently realized that he always has to sit in the back seat of the car, and now every trip involves his loud protests to “drive!” or at least sit in the “front!” Well, this little tractor train was perfect – if you ask him about it, he usually says “drive!” It may have been the best day of his life so far.

It is so fun to see his personality emerge. The minute we got out of the car and he saw the train, he hustled over to it and wanted to get on. So in he went, and a minute later he was headed out into a field with a bunch of kids he didn’t know and a man driving a tractor to who knows where. We waved as he rounded the corner and he was just happy as a clam, even though he probably had no real idea of where he was going. I had to laugh, because I was the exact opposite as a child – I would have had to watch the train go around at least five times or more, so I would know what would happen. And if there were too many other kids I didn’t know, I probably would have had no part in it. To Luke, it’s all an adventure and every kid is a potential friend. It’s been awesome to get to parent this brave, extroverted little guy.



A few days later we headed out to another berry farm to pick strawberries. We picked 18 lbs of yummy berry goodness – well, I use the term “we” pretty loosely. I picked a couple pounds while Luke ate a few, then I spent the rest of the time running around with Luke while Ian picked, we all had a great time. We spent the next few nights putting up 17 pints of jam and a few pints of strawberry syrup. Luke got pretty creative in finding ways to nab a berry or two…



So that’s what we’ve been up to lately! I hope your summer is off to a great start as well!

catching up


Our little family at our church’s annual Easter egg hunt.

Wow, over a month has gone by since I’ve written in this space. I guess it was just the time of year – end of winter, Lent – when I tend to tuck into myself and my home a little more. But new life is all around, and it’s time to catch up a little.


His little smile just melts me! (Also, he does have a diaper on in this pic, he’s not nakers!)

The biggest news around here isn’t really news, it’s just life – Luke is growing like crazy. Not so much physically (though I’m sure he’s grown a bit that way too, with all he eats), but in all the things he’s learning.

He kept putting eggs in other kids' baskets, too funny!

He kept putting eggs in other kids’ baskets, too funny!

His vocabulary is exploding, and he learns and uses several new words each day. It’s a little sad to hear him replace his baby words for more accurate pronunciations – “dol-dol” has recently become “dolphin,” and he’s started saying “dog,” so I’m not sure how much longer he’ll be using “pup-pup.” But it is so fun to hear him pick up on new words, and he is clearly proud of himself when he is able to say what he wants to say.

Showing his beloved orca and dolphin a bigger orca.

Showing his beloved orca and dolphin a bigger orca.

It’s so interesting to watch him pick up on the different uses of words – he knows that “help” can mean running to get his broom to assist me in cleaning up the dining room floor, as well as a request for me to get something for him that’s out of his reach. He usually says “help” very sweetly, along with “hand” when he wants to hold your hand or needs a little support getting down some steps. Warms my heart.


He is also always.on.the.move. One of his favorite phrases is “run-run!,” which he generally shouts quite loudly. He runs circles around our kitchen – an activity that is especially fun if daddy chases and tickles him. He loves playgrounds, especially if there are other kids to follow around and smile at. Even though it’s still cold out, we’ve hauled out his splash table for him to play with on sunny afternoons. He loves being outdoors, so summer should be a lot of fun for him.


Animals and books are still his favorite things. He has a bunch of little squirt toy animals that he plays with all the time. He especially loves “feeding” them (no surprise there). Sometimes we’ll line them up and I’ll ask him to point to different animals, and he asks to do that “‘gin!” and again. “‘Gin” is also a common request/demand for books – especially Curious George. He loves books about animals and a book called Jamberry, which he simply refers to as “Jam.”

Sorry it's blurry - he was feeding the kitty some hay.

Sorry it’s blurry – he was feeding the kitty some hay.

On the less pleasant side of development, we’ve definitely entered into the tantrum stage. He’s stubborn (hmm, like both his parents…), so if we aren’t walking in just the right direction or doing exactly what he wants, he breaks down and tries to exercise some control. And LOUDLY. We’re trying to be consistent and just walk through this stage of development with him. It’s actually improved a little over the last few weeks, and “bedroom time” seems to really help him when he throws a fit while we’re at home. He’s been known to walk himself to his room and shut the door, now that it’s pretty routine when he’s upset. I think he actually appreciates the opportunity to calm down by himself, in the company of his “night-night” (lovey blanket), of course.

(He was mad because I didn't let him see the photo on the camera after taking the picture)

(He was mad because I didn’t let him see the photo on the camera after taking the picture)

But mostly, it is a lot of good times around here. Exhausting for us sometimes – it’s like I can visualize this full tank of energy Luke has on his back, and my goal is to run it down to empty before naptime and bedtime each day! Our little dude eats like a kid more than twice his age, and he’s pretty slim, so you know he’s burning tons of energy each day. Praise the Lord for nicer weather and lots of parks to explore!


Luke is such a joy and a blessing in our lives, and it’s crazy to think that he turns TWO in less than two months!

diy cupcake liner flowers

DIY Cupcake Liner Flowers

I figured I’m really overdue in posting about my crafting endeavors, so I thought I’d share about these sweet little flowers I made last Saturday.

I love having fresh flowers in the house, but we’re still months away from any cutting flowers growing in our garden. When I came upon some cute yellow polka dot cupcake liners for $1, I decided I could make my own flowers to brighten up our dining room.

This whole project probably took about 15 minutes, and it was started and finished while Luke was coloring and playing with stickers, so I was kind of figuring it out on the fly and using what I could easily grab.



  • cupcake liners
  • felt (or fabric/paper and drinking straws)
  • glue
  • floral wire
  • scissors

IMG_6391The first step is to take two liners. Flip one inside out – so the pretty part is on the inside – and stick it in the other one. It gives it a double-sided look and some fullness.


Then just pinch the middle together to form a point.


For the felt, I just used some triangle shaped scraps I had (like I said, I was working fast!). They were about 7 inches tall, and the bottom edge was about 3 inches wide. They made for pretty short flowers, so I’d cut a taller triangle if I was actually cutting out a piece – at least 10 inches. You could also use other fabric or scrapbook paper, you’d just need to wrap it around something like a drinking straw. The felt is thick enough that it forms a good stem simply by wrapping around itself.


Okay, so take the narrow tip of your felt and wrap it around the point of your cupcake liners. It might be super helpful to have something like a glue gun, but I made it work. Make sure you grab enough of the liners to get a good hold on it, then tightly wrap the floral wire around both the felt and the liners. Don’t worry too much if your liners are getting a little wrinkled, because they’ll unfold and cover that part up.


Once you’ve gotten it started, just keep twisting the wire around the stem, and keep twisting the felt around itself.


The stem will get thicker as you work downwards, since it’s cut in a triangle shape. The wire makes it sturdy but bendable.


Now it’s time for the center. Take another cupcake liner and squish it into another point.


Unfold the base flower that’s already attached to the stem and add a dab of glue (again, hot glue would be super helpful). I just squished and pinched until it felt secure.


Unfurl and primp and do what you need to do to make it look pretty! Make a few more and you have a sweet little bouquet that won’t go bad in a few days!

You could totally try making all kinds of flowers – I stuck with the one inner bloom because I thought they looked a bit like daffodils. But you could fill them out more and try all sorts of variations!

IMG_6403Makes me excited for spring.

Speaking of spring, I’ve added a few spring-y things to my etsy shop, like this fun mini bunting garland.

The bright colors just cheer me up.

Happy flower making!


ten on ten: february 2013

For various reasons, I’ve missed out on doing Ten on Ten the last few months. Yesterday I finally managed to capture our day, which makes me so happy. I love Sundays – Ian is guaranteed to be off work, and we spend the day as a family – sometimes doing a fun activity, but often just enjoying each other at home. Daily tasks and muddy shoes are set aside to be dealt with later, and the focus is on play and rest. We sleep in – and take our time getting ready for the day, since our church doesn’t meet til 5pm – and just enjoy the coziness of our home. Maybe there’s not a lot of action, but it’s always a day well spent.

SEVEN THIRTY: The sun is out and Luke is ready to go see the “peep-peeps.”


EIGHT THIRTY: Family reading time.IMG_6314


TEN THIRTY: Serious tower building session.IMG_6316

ELEVEN THIRTY: The most awesome stick of all time.IMG_6319

TWELVE THIRTY: Mmm, again.IMG_6327

ONE THIRTY: Sweet rest.IMG_6329

TWO THIRTY: Naptime.IMG_6330

THREE THIRTY: I love when light pours in the house, and this day was great for that.IMG_6334

FOUR THIRTY: Time to get ready for church.IMG_6335