Sunday, December 21, 2008

Winter Wonderland!

It has been snowing non-stop for over a week here! I anticipate it actually staying until Christmas, since we just measured and it's over 8 inches already and still coming down. Micah has been having lots of fun in it, and so have we! I have always missed a white Christmas since moving here from Canada. Western Washington completely shuts down when snow hits, but this time I can't make too much fun. It actually is a lot of snow and it's freezing rain. Even church was cancelled this morning! The roads are thick sheets of ice. The thing about western Washington is that we don't have the equipment to handle the snow since it is such a rare occurrence. There are very few snow plows. We haven't ventured out too much, except to play in the snow. We made a gingerbread house last night.

Christmas 2008

We have been having a very fun December. Micah has been a big helper. He helped put up the Christmas lights outside, helped with the Christmas tree inside, and helped bake lots and lots of cookies all month long. This is going to have to be some quick photo posts because I need to go to bed soon.

Tuesday, December 02, 2008

Belated Halloween post

I really should be going to bed right now and not about to type a new blog post, especially since I'm so far behind as it is. So maybe I'll just make it short and sweet, trying to catch up again on a few events. Halloween came and went, American Thanksgiving came and went and I haven't even posted any photos. I apologize to my family, especially, who probably wait on pins and needles for my page to load and get disappointed every time there is nothing to show for it.

Micah was a lion for Halloween. We had fun - he did his first trick or treating over at our neighbor's house and then we went to our church for the Harvest Party. He LOVED the giant slide and he had fun with the bean bag toss. He even won a mug for me!

We carved a pumpkin and scooped out the seeds and toasted them. We ate lots of Halloween candy. Well, David and I did more so than Micah (he didn't know what he was missing!). We are now fully into the Christmas season and we'll probably be going out next weekend to pick out our tree. Where did November go?

Tuesday, November 04, 2008

Canadian Thanksgiving 2008

All the girls: Kimber with Reese, Erica with Coco, Stephanie with baby :), Jaclyn, Maleah with Hallee, and me

Maleah and Erica with their babies and their homemade hooter hiders

Stephanie and Maleah

Myself and Jaclyn cleaning up the mess!

Canadian Thanksgiving happened for us a couple weeks late. I always love to do it even though I stress a bit before it happens. I love having people over and hanging out, but there's always a certain amount of work that goes into having people over. Planning the menu, shopping for the food, cleaning the house and preparing the food. I made a Sausage-cranberry stuffing recipe that I had seen in Wondertime Magazine and it was FABULOUS! I made it the day ahead, and it made enough for 2 9x13 pans, plus enough to stuff the 20lb turkey we had! We had a lot of yummy leftovers! We made the turkey with a fried pecan-bourbon glaze, also fabulous! The gravy even turned out perfectly! I wasn't planning on making mashed potatoes because there's always so much food, but when I happened to mention it to Dave a couple hours before the feast he was not too happy to hear that there would be no mashed potatoes! I had to run out to the store to get potatoes and a few of the other ingredients I needed for it. The potatoes were awesome, it was good that we had them. But... I had felt pretty relaxed most of the day until I realized I had to go to the store and make potatoes! I guess I can't blame it all on Dave - we did need some other things at the store too. But my friends say I'm a good wife and should be rewarded with a new pair of jeans or something!!

I had felt relaxed because everyone else helped out so much with the menu. Even the women that had newborns brought something! Erica has a 2 1/2 year old and a 1 month old and she made twice baked sweet potatoes and a pumpkin pie from scratch, complete from sugar pie pumpkins! Maleah has three kids (3 and under) and made an absolutely delicious cranberry sauce! These women amaze me!

I am very thankful for my amazing friends and for delicious food!

Monday, October 27, 2008

October is flying by

I have a lot to catch up on. October has been a busy month and it doesn't seem to be slowing down at all. In early October, I was thrilled to be able go up to BC to visit a friend that I've had since kindergarten and share in the joy of her brand new baby. She had her baby a couple weeks early. I had been planning to go there for her baby shower, but what better way to have a baby shower than with the actual baby! It was great to be able to go there and visit with my friends. Another friend from high school was there visiting her too. The three of us had all swam and played soccer together in high school!

The one thing I was very frustrated about, though, was the fact that I had FINALLY finished getting all the stuff together for my passport application to be renewed. It's been looming over me for about 2 years. I got everything assembled and photos taken for the special Canadian specifications and then sent it through the mail. I was excited to answer and sign for the passport document that came to my front door a couple weeks later, just before my trip to BC, but when I opened it I was really mad. It had been damaged by water. Seriously!? How often does mail get water damaged? I don't often send things like photos or even letters by mail anymore, but when I did, they never seemed to get damaged. Of all things, my PASSPORT documents had to be damaged, making me get new photos taken, and having to get all my documents prepared again. The last time, about a year ago, I had sent my application and then it was returned to me too because I hadn't checked the box about living in another country before 1977, even though I wasn't born before 1977. Apparently everyone needs to check that box and now I know!

Over the Canadian Thanksgiving holiday, my parents came for a visit. We celebrated Micah's birthday while they were here. We had one family over to celebrate with us, close family friends of ours that my parents have enjoyed getting to know whenever they come here for a visit. We had a very nice evening with them! The whole visit with my parents was great. Micah loved having Grandma and Grandpa here, especially with Grandpa keeping him entertained in the back seat of the car and being silly with the purple balloon.

Birthday cake!

A good night hug to Grandpa!

He loved Grandma's story time and playing with blocks and playdoh with her. I loved it, too!

We went out the pumpkin patch and got a couple pictures, but unfortunately there weren't too many pumpkins there.

Soon to come, I'll fill you in on our Canadian Thanksgiving celebration. We did it a couple weeks late because of everything going on during the actual holiday. I have a feeling we're going to be doing it like that for many years to come since Micah's birthday is so close to it.

Tuesday, October 07, 2008

Two Years

Happy Birthday Micah!

Two years ago today you were barely breathing and confined to an oxygen tent. Now you run circles around the kitchen, living room and dining room. You say 1, 2, 3 GO and race up and down the hallway. You run to the garage door when Daddy comes home. You walk to the park and push the stroller without help. You kick and throw balls with incredible accuracy and coordination. You can jump higher than Daddy! You are tons of fun because you have so much energy.

Two years ago you could barely see me and now you know who your family is living in Canada. You get excited to see your friends at church. You know all your body parts, you know your alphabet, you can count to somewhere in the teens.

Two years ago you had to learn to swallow and had trouble getting enough food to fill your little belly and now you help me make dinner and you eat everything that is put in front of you.

How was I to know how much I would love you? You have grown so much and learned so much over the past two years. Two years ago today I was scared and excited and unsure of what my life would be like with a new baby to take care of. I realize now that I have learned so much from you, a tiny little person, and I have grown in ways I could never have imagined.

You have taught me to have joy in the little things. You have taught me to appreciate spider webs and bugs. You have taught me to laugh at silly things. You have taught me to have patience when I think I need to hurry. Your little mind soaks everything up and it inspires me to teach more than what I think you're capable of because you continually astound me. You have taught me that I don't always need to say no. We can drive with the windows partway down, we can fudge a little on nap time to play a little longer with the blocks, we can eat a few more animal crackers or a little bit of cookie batter just because.

You make me proud when you kick or throw or hit a ball. You make me laugh when you laugh. You make my heart swell when you give me a hug and a kiss. I love it when you remind me to pray. I love it when you sing the last words of every line in Rock a Bye Baby and Twinkle Twinkle Little Star. I love hearing you try to say new words. I love spending time with you. You are a cool little guy and I'm so glad you're mine!

I love you, Micah! Happy Birthday dear boy.

Monday, September 15, 2008

Growing Responsible Kids

Just looking at these pictures makes me want to bake some more! Mmmm chocolate chip cookies.

When my grandparents were here a couple months ago, my Gran told me it's a good time to start teaching him to do chores. A child's play is adult work. Micah has been helping with a number of every day chores around the house. He loves helping empty the dishwasher. He hands me silverware or plates and after each one he says "dank you". He helps load and unload the washer and dryer and then take the clothes from the laundry room to the bedrooms to fold and put away. He is usually really good about cleaning up his toys at the end of the day and putting them away. He really likes to sweep and helps when I need to throw away the stuff in the dust pan by opening the door to where we keep the garbage can. He loves helping with anything in the kitchen and now that I've taught him to stand on a chair by the counter, he will move it over and stand there every time I do anything in the kitchen. He likes to help weed, too, and will pull some himself (as long as they're weeds and not plants!) and he'll take the pile that I've collected over to the garbage for me. It's fun teaching him chores. I'm sure it will be even more fun seeing him do them on his own! :)

A friend of mine had a schedule for her 3 young boys during the summer. They had every couple hours blocked out for certain times - playing outside, playing quietly inside, chores, lunch, nap time, etc. Each child had a couple different chores that he had to do and it was just something small, but they all did them. They each had one chore they did completely on their own and one that they did with mommy. The youngest boy was 2 and he would vacuum the small living room carpet and help mommy unload the dishwasher. What a brilliant plan to teach kids responsibility! Do you have any ideas or plans for teaching your children? What worked for you?

Thursday, August 28, 2008

Big Elpah

I have been baking lately, and today Micah helped. He even called himself a "Big Elpah" because I told him he was such a big helper. He stood on a chair next to me and poured the sugar and flour and baking powder and soda and oil into the mixer and watched it mix up. He even tried to stir when it was too thick to mix. Grandma would be so proud! I baked it while he napped, but he got to try some of his yummy zucchini bread when he woke up. It's a delicious recipe, so I will share it with you!

Zucchini Bread

3 c. flour
1 tsp salt
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
3 tsp cinnamon
3 eggs
1 c. vegetable oil
2 1/4 c. sugar
3 tsp vanilla
2 c. grated zucchini
1 c. chopped walnuts

Grease and flour two 8x4 inch bread pans. Preheat oven to 325.

Sift flour, salt, b.powder, b.soda, and cinnamon.

Beat eggs, oil, vanilla, and sugar together in bowl. Add sifted ingredients to creamed mixture and beat well. Stir in zucchini and nuts. Pour into pans.

Bake 60 minutes at 325. Cool in pan on rack for 20 minutes. Remove from pan and cool completely.

Monday, August 25, 2008


I don't know what it is about me: Either I have a look about me that says I will not complete a race or I have steel screws in my leg that mess with the timing systems. Hopefully it's the latter. Well, hopefully it's just the timing systems and a freak coincidence, but it is rather irritating. I completed a triathlon on Saturday and absolutely loved it! It was a bit tiring, but SO MUCH FUN! A triathlon is a swim, bike, and run. I did a "sprint' triathlon, which doesn't necessarily mean there is any sprinting going on, but it does mean the distances are a lot shorter than normal. The swim was a quarter of a mile, the bike was 14.6 miles and the run was 3 miles. The timing chip around my ankle beeped and recorded my time each time I went through the transitions areas and started a new leg of the race, but the final (and probably most important) result was not read. The reason I think there's something wrong with me is because this isn't the first time it has happened. I got a big old "DNF" (Did Not Finish) on the Sound to Narrows 12K run, too, because my chip didn't read at the end.

Well, I am impressed already with the organization of the triathlon I just did. After the race, I looked at the results sheets but I couldn't find my name, so David went to one of the people who were organizing the race and asked about it. She said there were three backups she would check and worse case scenario, she would check with the photographer when he took my picture at the end of the race and get the time from him. I got a call this morning saying that the 3 backups didn't work, but she had already emailed the photographer and will wait to hear from him.

The race was in Issaquah, very close to where David's sister and her family lives. So we stayed the night with them before the race so that I wouldn't have to get up quite so early. The race started at 7am. I got there at 6, got my bike set up and then found my friend Emily who was also doing the race. We stood around for a long time waiting for it to start. It felt frigid that morning, I was shivering (which might have been a little of nerves) but surprisingly, once I stepped into the water it wasn't all that cold. It was a little difficult swimming because we were all so close to one another, so I swallowed a bit of water but didn't get any black eyes from elbows or feet. I got out, ran to my bike and got my socks, shoes, helmet, and shirt on took off for the longest leg of the race. The people who do these triathlons are serious bikers, man. They would pass me and then I would look up and they'd be GONE! I felt like I was standing still or something, but my legs were definitely not feeling like I was standing still! Thankfully there weren't too many hills - only 2 - and they weren't too steep. I got to the end of the bike race, loaded my bike back into the transition area and took off running. I saw my sister-in-law with her family when I came out of the transition area, but felt like I was moving at a snail's pace. My legs were pretty tired from all that biking, but I kept going and ran (jogged is probably closer to the truth) the whole three miles. I wore my watch for the bike and run, so I know how long it took and the chip recorded my swim, so I guess it took me about an hour and a half. I had so much fun, I'm thinking of doing another one in a couple weeks.

After I was done with my race, my nephew Jack did the kids triathlon. It was a lot of fun watching them! He did great, especially with having learned to competently ride his bike just a week before the race!

Friday, August 22, 2008

Happy Birthday Uncle Greg!

Today is my brother's 30th birthday and in a week my Grandpa will be turning 80. My grandparents came to visit in between the last two vacations I just wrote about. We had a couple days to clean and do laundry after we got back from Ontario before my Grandparents flew into the Seattle airport from Alaska. They first went to Winnipeg for a church conference, then to Alaska to visit my grandpa's brother (who had driven an RV with his wife from Virginia or something) and then down to visit us. We had a great time with them. It's so nice that they are able to travel so well still. My Gran is 75 and my Grandpa is 80. They are still so young and active. My Gran helped in the yard a lot with pulling weeds or watering or transplanting roses. She also helped me make some delicious raspberry freezer jam. My Grandpa worked a lot on a book about his life which he'd been hoping to finish by his birthday party next weekend. Unfortunately the one picture I had taken when they were here was deleted because the camera battery was too low to save. I didn't get any pictures of this visit, but I have a picture from when they were here last year in April.

Monday, August 18, 2008

Chelan 2008

The last week of July we took a trip over the mountains to Chelan, where Dave's parents have a couple of condos. His parents were on a cruise and the rest of the family was unable to use the condos, so we invited a bunch of friends to join us. We had 3 condos in total and we basically had a rotating door for friends to come and stay with us. It usually worked out that everyone was able to have their own condo. It was a blast! The kids didn't do quite as well as we were hoping with falling asleep at night, so we didn't get much chance to play games together, but we did have a great time at the beach, at the pool and at the park. We rented a boat one day too and had a lot of fun with that.

Braden, Tyler and Micah

Brooke and Matt Edwards, with baby Zack

Tyler and Micah learned some bad habits during the week!

This cute baby is Henry. We met up with a few other couples from our church who were camping near us at the same time.


Ice cream!