Saturday, December 20, 2014

Happy 2nd Birthday Darren!

Weight: 27.2 pounds 54 percentile
Height: 34 inches 48 percentile
Head: 19.5 inches 83 percentile

Likes to push his scooter backwards.
Likes group hugs.
Speaks gibberish fluently and clearly.
Loves, cars, trucks, and airplanes.
Doesn't like meat. Occasionally, depending on his mood, and if the stars all align, he will eat chicken.
Runs to his sisters every time when we pick them up from school.

squisher= shluh-shluh

We love you big boy!

Friday, December 12, 2014


Last year Tim had a recruiting event at BYU in Provo, UT. He got to stay in a beautiful cabin at the Sundance resort (where we got engaged) with a cozy fireplace and solely enjoying all the romantic settings that come with that. During that trip over the phone he told me, "Next time, you are coming with me." So this year I did!
It was perfect timing for a much needed R&R for this exhausted mommy of four. The day before we left Darren was a complete nightmare and the only thing that was holding me together was the thought that I was going to wake up the next day and have a complete break from the kid. :)

The best things for rejuvenation for me during this quick trip were: the sounds of real wood crackling and popping in our cozy cabin, fresh mountain air, and beautiful scenery. I kept making comments how beautiful everything was and Tim would just laugh and say, "Who are you??" Maybe a change of pace from my crazy mommy schedule had this non-nature loving chick extra sensitive to my surroundings!

In the morning we took a quick walk down to our favorite restaurant, The Foundry Grill, for a fresh, yummy breakfast. It was almost 10 years ago Tim took me out for dinner and then for dessert for my birthday at this romantic restaurant and then surprised me right outside by proposing to me! We have come back to this restaurant many times over since then. It holds a very special place in our hearts.

^^The exact spot I made the best decision of my life.^^

Saturday, November 29, 2014

Thanksgiving week

Well this has been a busy week!!

Thanksgiving wouldn't be Thanksgiving in Southern California without some beach time, duh! It is extremely rare as parents of young children to go to the beach and have down time. But this time around I can't even tell you how long of a stretch we had just laying out under the umbrella with zero interruptions. Not even a peep from the babe. Just the sounds of our happy children under amazing clear blue skies.

(And these birds are real. They flew in the shot just in time!)

^^Cara is wearing Marisa's first ever swimsuit. I can't resist drooling how dang cute she looks in that teeny tiny swimsuit!^^

I hosted Thanksgiving this year at my house. My sister-in-law just had her baby so my mother-in-law was gone. I got to have both my siblings and my new sister-in-law, Abby, my father-in-law, and Adam a friend of ours. I spent 24 hours cooking for my guests.  All from scratch baby! I made all of my favorites: Turkey, mashed potatoes, stuffing, sweet potatoes, fresh green beans with bacon and shallots, raspberry and pumpkin pie! I am incredibly proud of myself.

As per tradition, we head over to Huntington Beach for breakfast at Ruby's on the pier the day after Thanksgiving. And the one and only time Tim goes shopping is on Black Friday at HSS.

To end our week I finally took Cara to get her ears pierced. I have been wanting to do it since she turned 3 months but I, A) Have not really had time, and B) Kinda sad that she wasn't going to look like a baby anymore! Now her ears match her sparkly eyes. ;)

Happy Thanksgiving!

Monday, November 24, 2014

4 month check-up

flipped over a few days short of her turning 3 months old.


november 4th: after several days of sleepless nights I noticed her first tooth!

has returned to sleeping 5 1/2 hours straight.

has the best quickest smile.
always happy.
most pleasant baby.

Weight: 14lbs 9 1/2 ounces 60%
Height: 24 1/2" 50%
Head: 16 1/4" 70%

Saturday, November 22, 2014

It's over!

Soccer seasons o-ver...
Soccer seasons o-ver...

We made it! This season was painful. I'm just going to say it. I love Marisa for clearly trying something out of her zone and sticking with it. She was always all smiles and never complained. She got to play with a great group of girls and learn about team work. And for all that I am glad. But I'm ready to move on!

What made her last game extra sweet was that Daddy got to be the ref for the second time during her games. I think he would agree that that 7 hour training on a Saturday shortly after Cara was born was worth it for his girl. ;)

Sunday, November 16, 2014

the power of words

I constantly feel like I fail as a mother. Like I don't do enough. Or that I'm not enough. I know that I'm not alone when I say that at the end of each day I go to bed with "Mom guilt."

But I'm trying. I try to pray more for help, for guidance. I felt inspired the other day that I needed to tell my girls how I really feel about them.  Our days are so busy and packed that I don't have the time to just lay down and have that one on one time with them individually.

Last night, I decided to do just that.

I started with Marisa. I tucked her in bed and quietly whispered to her how grateful I was for her and her help around the house. I told her she was a fantastic big sister for watching her little brother for me many, many times. I told her it wasn't an easy job to do that and I truly appreciated it. I told her she was special to me and that her dad and I love her.

What came next, surprised me. She started to rub her eyes and had a quiet sob. I asked her what she was thinking and she said, "I just feel the spirit."
For one, I am so grateful that she is learning to identify how the spirit works for her. The spirit speaks to us all differently. And I sure am glad that the spirit was able to allow her to feel that what I was saying was true and real.

I climbed up to the top bunk and repeated telling my feelings to Natalie. Natalie just said, "I love you too, Mom," and gently closed her eyes and curled up right next to me. I'm an awe that all her fears melt away and that she feels so safe being next to me. I'm her protector. And she knows that. She feels that. It is a humbling experience to be a mother.
I have come to realize that even though I knew my daughters needed to hear me say these things, Heavenly Father also knew that by doing so I heard from my daughters what I needed to hear.

That I'm doing alright as a mom.

Saturday, November 1, 2014


Halloween 2014: Monarch butterfly, vampire, and Kobe with his adorable basketball!
And always a treat to have Grandpa and Grandma join us!

Last night was literally one of the best Halloween nights ever.
With trunk-or-treat under Darren's belt I was excited to see how Darren was going to take to his first trick-or-treating on Halloween. He was hilarious and so dang cute. He held on to Grandpa's finger in between houses and carried his bag the entire time! Impressive for a one year old!

Darren did manage to say, "Trick-or-treat," once. But all the other times he approached a door it was a gibberish sentence, which meant trick-or-treat, and always followed by a clear and deep, "Thank UUUUU!"
A few other times he would even walk up, say thank you, and walk away without getting candy put in his bag! haha
People throughout the night would randomly shout out "KOBE!" as he walked by and many gave him extra candy just because he was so incredibly cute.

^^His bag got so heavy that he would throw it over his shoulders to be able to carry it better.^^

Darren shockingly walked the entire time and had no fear walking up by himself to a house. If a basket was left on the porch or if people would let him chose candy from a basket he would grab some, take a couple of steps to walk away, and then come back for more. Except for this time. He wasn't quite sure what to do.

This year has confirmed that taking a first timer trick-or-treating has got to be high on the list of one of my favorite things to do! Oh, and coming home and letting the kids eat as much candy as they want. ;)

Happy Halloween!

Wednesday, October 22, 2014


I guess I could say it has become tradition to bring my kids to Zoomars during Halloween season over the years. Darren and I were one of the first ones to arrive so we got lucky and we were the only ones in the pen with the hungry little guinea pigs! Darren was squealing in delight whenever he handed/threw a carrot at the guinea pigs. He was like The Pipe Piper with all the guinea pigs scurrying at this feet. The quick movements of the rodents would cause him to quickly jump back and shuffle his feet backwards when they all would gang up on him for food. It was so funny.

^^A lady worker handed us a guinea pig to hold and told Darren, "This is Fred!"^^

^^Darren didn't like feeding the chickens and he was incredibly cautious when feeding the llamas. See his little hand of nervousness gently placing little pieces of lettuce along the railing? haha!^^

My boy is a lover of trains. The entire car ride to the petting zoo I kept saying we were going to ride a "choo-choo" even though I knew he had no idea what that meant exactly.

And just as I predicted, he lit up when he saw the mechanical train ride! During the ride he didn't look like he was having fun but I knew he was. It was all just really new to him!


 And don't worry, by round two he was a pro train rider...


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