Thursday, March 21, 2013

Brother Sister

I thought it would be fun to compare the kids' photos at 6 months.  People continue to say Ben is looking more like Lakin when she was his age.  I am agreeing.  While hunting for the photo for this I fell down the rabbit hole of iphoto and did not emerge for a looooong time.  My little girl used to be a baby, guys!

These two photos sum up their little personalities at 6 months too.  Lakin, despite her crazy, free spirited ways, was a very serious baby.  I worried a tiny bit that she would not have any fun because she always seemed to have a furrowed brow.  Ha!  That girl can have fun with a cardboard box.  For hours.  She came out of that serious little shell of hers.  Now she doesn't have a care in the world.  Unless you count watching Yo Gabba Gabba anytime she can convince me to turn it on.  That is pretty much her main goal in life right now.  DJ Lance Rock has just replaced Dora and Diego.  I'm not convinced it was a truly even trade.  But that's another blog post for another time.

Bennett, even when he's sick, is such a smiley little man.  While he's starting to find his voice and prove that maybe he's got a little more opinion than I originally suspected, he's still my easy going guy.  He's got better hair than Lakin at that age.  Poor Lakin with her unfortunate Lloyd Christmas hairline.

Love my two chubby cheeked babies.

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Coloring is therapeutic.

So I have a million things to do but I am instead sitting here next to Chris while he works on legitimate work and coloring. You know, working on my calligraphy and lettering skills.


Lakin has been praying for our meals lately.  In the past we've asked if she'd like to pray and she would always politely refuse.  Now, she gets bummed out if she doesn't get to say evening grace. Her prayer is always the same.  Actually taken from a Veggie Tales song.

"Lord, God, thank you for our prayers.  That's why I say thanks everyday. AMEN (exclaimed with some serious enthusiasm)!

We started a prayer pail using a craft I made at MOPS.  Lakin draws two sticks out and those are the two families or things we pray for before we enjoy our meal.  Lakin loves drawing the sticks, usually has such sweet remarks about the people we're planning to pray for and then inevitably prays the same prayer every single time.

Lakin: (after drawing her sticks) "Oooh... Grandma and Grandpa.  I want to go to their house."

Me: "Okay, we will sometime soon.  Let's pray for Grandma and Grandpa now, though.  We'll also pray for Casey and Daniel.  Do you want to pray?"

Lakin: "Yep.  I love Casey.  And Daniel."

Me: "Okay, let's pray."

Lakin: "Lord, God, thank you for our prayers.  That's why I say thanks everyday. AMEN!"

Me: "What about Grandma and Grandpa and Casey and Daniel?  Can you pray for them too."

Lakin: "And Casey and Daniel and Grandma and Grandpa too.  AMEN"

At this point Chris and I are usually peeking one eye at each other and smiling.  This little ritual is so darling.  Before we can add anything else Lakin is shoveling food into her mouth and telling us about her day.

You know, perhaps the simplest prayers are the sweetest.

And now, please enjoy these unrelated photos.

Monday, March 18, 2013

Lake Diddle

This kid is really growing up fast.  We have been celebrating some big milestones in our house.  Namely, pooping in the potty.  Who knew that was going to be SO awful to figure out?  We're not totally out of the woods but we're turning a corner.  Couple that with the promise of spring and we're ready to sing and dance around here.  

Saturday, March 16, 2013

Life According to the iPhone: February Edition

Warning, this one's a long one.  If you follow me on instagram, you've probably seen many of these little photos.

1. Shower for Carli- who has since brought baby Evelyn into the world!  Welcome little girl! 2. Ben being absolutely wonderful and adorable (first of many of these photos in this post) 3. Ben in the mustache onesie my mom made 4. Annie and Lakin reading at Monkey Junction, two peas in a pod 5. SHAMROCK shake in February after hearing of their early release 6. Ben on Valentine's day, onesie made by my mom 7. top knot/ stylista 8. happy boy getting a head scan 9. baby doll in a helmet

 1. playing in the sunshine surrounded by snow- ready for the snow to be gone but it continues to fall even though it's mid March 2. family movie night: The Lorax, Ben fell asleep within ten minutes and Lakin was begging for Diego within the first thirty minutes... Fail. 3. ice cream after a successful day at ikea 4. Goldilocks in ikea bed 5. Lakin speaks harshly to Diego and Alicia about something; missed the wag of the finger but it happened. 6. Molly and Lakin reading "mazagines" 7. shamrock shake 2 (in the EXACT same position as the other shamie pic, hmmmm 8. Ben fell asleep in Target after lots of angry fussing 9. Someone is not so fond of the cold and snow.  I hear ya, buddy.

1. tried the frozen crock pot meal craze and realized a couple of things: a. crock pot meals all taste the same b. they aren't as yummy as you hope c. you're stuck with sub par left overs forEVER  2. Ben giving smooches 3. first taste of rice cereal, still as unimpressed as he was at first bite... 4. baby boy loves this balloon 5. Ben's vampire move 6. Lakin trying on accessories in GAP 7. This boy!  Wearing PJS, snuggling baby animals, oh my!  8. Lakin and Annie's tea party 9. Ben waves me and my camera off

1. The most dramatic tantrum over the removal of Dora nightgown and dressing for the day 2. meeting her idol at the Kingdom Kids' carnival 3. sensory table at the carnival 4. relishing in the abundance of dress up clothes (currently forbidden at home until we're pooping in the potty) 5. hungry 6. Father/Son nap 7. baby jeans 8. trying on Mom's skirt 9. morning sibling snuggles (+ Diego and Alicia)

1. Lakin prepares her latest blog post 2. goggles 3. "Emily is my best friend, she knows everything." 4.  planting produce in the library garden 5. fishing in the library 6. driving the bus together 7. mail delivery 8. Swimsuit/ Postal/ Gold Boots 9. sickie

1. Snow Day (everyday) 2. lawnmower, bike, ball - snow ain't holding Lakin back 3. giggles
4. Lakin and Annie at Monkey Junction AGAIN, reading AGAIN (notice they both have a Dora book) 5. Lakin checking herself out in the mirror at the butt crack of dawn after she's woken me up and I'm pretending to still be asleep 6. Ben loves Pat the Bunny 7. Casey and the tiniest purse every at the Lia Sophia party 8. teepeed 9. baking a cake for Casey

1. El Carambas for Casey's birthday = sombreros for all 2. favorite photo of Lakin to date 3. limes - this is a regular occurrence when in the presence of Daniel and Alonso 4. Lakin puts on baby swim trunks and proceeds to wear them the rest of the day 5. water in the basement at 2 am while on call makes for an angry husband 6. Dora Memory 7. lady like paci 8. Lakin and all her friends 9. Ben plays independently and proves himself to be the world's easiest little baby

So, yeah.  This is what we've been up to.  A whole lot of crazy nothing.  We're ready for summer around these parts.

Friday, March 15, 2013

Photography Friday: Lindy's Maternity Photos


My dear friend, Lindy, yes, the nacho baby shower one, hired our studio to take her maternity photos.  baby girl L is coming in about a month and the Jaeger family is itching to meet her.  Not as much as her sweet parents though!

Brian and Lindy's session was oozing with love and excitement, and um... love.  People, we don't always see this much affection from our engaged couples!  They were fabulous to photograph and so clearly in love with one another and their little girl on the way.

You will die these photos are so precious.

 Just another hard day at the office... photo bombing sessions.

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Bennett: 6 Months

Happy half birthday little man!

 Yes, those are American Flag swim shorts.  It was Lakin's idea to take some photos with them.  The white fur really adds a touch of class, doesn't it?  I am quite certain I'm going to have to a disgruntled twelve-year-old boy to answer to someday for photos like these.

Baby boy spent his half birthday feeling crummy.  He's fighting a monster cold and is very sad and in need of lots of cuddles.  You can tell he's not feeling his best in some of the photos but momma needed to post his 6 month pictures so we all muddled through.

Check out those chompers.  I'm certain there are a few more teeth on their way too.  Babies are teething for EVER.  It is the perfect explanation for any fussy behavior.  Am I right?

I feel the need to clarify that Ben is not crawling.  In my post about feeding him solids I said time was flying and also crawling.  Both Chris' parents and mine read that to say Ben was crawling.  HE IS NOT.  Thank goodness.  I couldn't handle two movers yet.  Ben isn't even interested in rolling over.

Let's see... updates on the Benster.

He's really cute.  I mean, really.

He likes to grab everything, hence my permaponytail.

He does little mini stomach crunches in an effort to sit himself up.  I see a Presidential Fitness Award in his future.

He is back to sleeping all night long.  He's tuckered out by about 6pm everyday and ready to get up and party at 6:30am each morning.

I think we'll keep him.

Monday, March 11, 2013

a tiny rant on home ownership

I'm quite certain the best time to make a judgment call on home ownership is after you've spent a good hour clearing the drive way of wet, heavy snow for the umpteenth time this winter and it's MARCH 11th.

Hold on friends, I'm about to go on a rant.

When we prepared for our move to Minnesota we decided to consider buying a home.  I was ELATED.  It took a little convincing to get Chris excited and in fact, I'm still convincing the man that owning a home is worth it.

You know I love me some HGTV and I couldn't wait to make a home my own after several years in college living in rental spaces.  I could paint the walls, hang a bunch of crap everywhere, make cosmetic changes to my space to reflect my personality and style.  In a former life I'd thought I wanted to be an interior designer.  Then I took Art 101 and realized I had no skill at drawing, proportion, blah, blah.  I also realized a lot of design has to do with building codes, proportion, math and wasn't just pairing cute swatches of fabric and flinging some paint around.  So I switched to Communications.  Then to Education.  And now I'm a photographer.  Yes, I'm very good at making commitments and decisions apparently.  But enough history about my inability to stick with any one thing.

Buying a house is crazy.  It's stressful.  It's a gamble.  Chris hated that we couldn't guarantee that we'll be able to sell it in five years and that the walls wouldn't collapse in on us while we owned the home.  I couldn't think about any of the risk because I was already considering what Ikea purchased would look nice in the downstairs living room.

Obviously we did decide to buy the house.  I'll let you know in two years when its time to sell if it was really worth it but over time I'm seeing owning is not all it's cracked up to be.

1. ALL that snow.  There is a ton of snow.  We have a snow blower.  It intimidates me and I have yet to successfully do all the right steps to get it running.  You have to plug the dang thing in, jiggle the bunny rabbit key, blow in this hole, pull a string and jump up and down three times and it's suppose to start or something like that.  But even if I could get it rolling, I have awful visions of loosing limbs in that snow grinder.  So I shovel.  It takes longer and my children are stuck inside watching Yo Gabba Gabba losing brain cells with every second.  To have a snow removal service come and make it all disappear would be so awesome.  BUT I OWN THIS PLACE.  And when it's not snow, its a lawn to maintain.  I do a majority of the snow removal and lawn mowing due to Chris' schedule.  Have you ever seen a nine months pregnant woman mowing her lawn?  It's awful.

2. Stuff breaks.  For example, the other day our sump pump was unable to successfully pump water away from our foundation so I was met with an icy cold surprise when I went to take Ben's pooped on PJs to the washer.  Thank goodness for his blowout, otherwise the tiny flood could have been a massive one and we would be stuck with the bill since homeowners' insurance doesn't cover floods.  Um, thanks home owners insurance, what good are you?  So now our carpet's drying out, the concrete floor is exposed and tetanus laden nails are poking up waiting for small children to step on them.  So rather than picking up glitter bunnies from the dollar section of Target to celebrate the risen Lord, I'll be spending my hard earned money on things like a wet vacuum and new carpet padding.  Happy Easter to all.

3. I never thought about things like sump pumps and foundations before owning a home.  If the dishwasher made a weird noise I called maintenance.  I enjoyed the beautiful landscape of our old apartment complex without a true appreciation of the labor and time that went in to maintaining the grounds.  I swam in our lovely apartment pool and enjoyed a community gym, not once thinking about the luxury and liability of either. To be ignorant again.  Sigh.

4.  You have to sell the place.  I would say that we are always thinking about how a certain decision will affect the sellability of our home.  (Wouldn't our realtor be proud?)  We chat about the things we'll have to do to a place before we sell it and it's kind of sad that we'll never enjoy these particular upgrades.  For example, my children have just trashed our carpet over time.  It looks like several food bombs went off all over the floor.  I walk past stains in the nursery and can remember fond memories or projectile poop and spit up.  I see the place where my coffee cup was lovingly knocked over by someone who shall remain nameless when she was bouncing through the living room.  That same nameless individual is responsible for nail polish on the bathroom floor and other various blemishes in our home.  Since our children will probably continue to leave their mark on this house, we have to wait until the very last minute for certain upgrades so they don't have a chance to leave their chocolate stained fingerprints all over them.

So when I was wet vacuuming the icy water from my bare basement floor at 2 am Saturday I thought to myself, you know, renting wouldn't have been bad.  Let this be a warning to all who are considering home ownership.  It's no walk in the park.

Disclaimer:  I am thankful for the roof over our heads.  The two car garage I park in.  The yard my kids play in.  The beauty that surrounds me.  I just needed a moment to grouch about having too much.  Thanks.  Waaah.

 Before the wet vac made its appearance I used a mop to clean up 5 buckets of water in the laundry room.  Points for persistence?
 Marshland indoors.
Angry on call resident at 2 am sucking up water in between pages from the ER.

Saturday, March 9, 2013


You can tell what kind of a week it's been mentally based on the number of parenting books I have checked out from the library at a given point in time.  I don't always read them, but having them on my night stand helps me to feel like I'm taking steps in the right direction.  Deep breath.

Parenting is bringing me to my knees in prayer.  Thanks goodness Jesus has my back, can I get an amen on that?

But despite the typical two-year old drama, Lakin still manages to make crazy look good.

Lake's outfit is all her own design.

Vest: Target
Pants: GAP kids
Purple Socks: stocking surprise from Santa
White Turtleneck: Children's Place

Saturday, March 2, 2013

I do big boy things. I make big boy noise.

And yet ANOTHER step toward adulthood.  Ben is eating solids.  Okay, possibly eating is not the correct verb.  Ben is squishing solids out of his mouth and getting them all over his bib and face.

And then I cried.  Because my baby is growing up.

Did you know he has one tooth?  Ah, the injustice!  Time is moving too fast.  (And ironically is also crawling- how is that possible?)

Friday, March 1, 2013


We have had no shortage of the white stuff these last couple of weeks.  You know, I'm okay with snow.  I prefer it to fall on Christmas Eve and be completely done by New Years but that's not how things work here in the North.  So we're embracing our snow land and doing a little playing.  Clearly, we haven't embraced it enough to get proper snow boots and gloves.  There's always next year.

 And you thought snow pants came in standard pink, black, and navy.  These snow pants are so dang cute.  I mean, come on.
 She was begging to go outside the second the snow started falling.  That Aunt Jemima head wrap is actually mine but she insists on wearing it.
 Pay no attention to the dirty boot marks all over her coat.  That couldn't be from the immediate dropping of the coat in the doorway the second she walks into the house every. single. time.

 Note to self for next winter: this kid needs waterproof gloves.  These dinky ones from Walmart won't cut it.
 So maybe the snow is really pretty.
 Spotting a birds nest under the deck.
 Who needs a tissue?
 Baby Cora was tolerating the snow but a little unimpressed.
 Forcing the issue of the slide despite the obvious obstacles.
Snow fight with Audrey.

Dear March, please bring with you a couple balmy 40 degree days.  I am getting a little cabin fever with my two kids.  If I could have a couple of opportunities to go to the grocery store without taking 20 minutes to suit the kids up head to toe that would be peachy.  Better yet, let's skip right to May.

a slightly seasonally depressed mother of two