a M O N T H already

Ella is a month old today. Can't believe it. We all just L O V E her. It never ceases to amaze me how having a baby just makes your heart bigger. Not only to make room for the babe but, also, I love my older kids that much more. I feel so lucky to have all my babies. It's hard and wonderful to see them grow up so fast.

This girl is such a good baby. During the day, when she's tired, I just put her down anywhere and she falls asleep. Nights are a little rougher - her fussy time is from about 7:00 to 11:30pm. I'm not sure if her days and nights are mixed up or if she sleeps so much during the day to tune out the chaos that abounds around here. {With three older brothers she's bound to get used to it sooner than later}.
I did get a small miracle last night, though. She slept from 12:30 to 5:00 am! The longest stretch of sleep I've gotten since she was born. It felt great, I tell ya!

Ella: is easy going (she handles Austin and Landon toting her around without a fuss - f.y.i. they don't carry her unless I am RIGHT there - just to put Grandma's mind at ease:) ). eats every 3 to 4 hours. is putting on weight like a champ. looks like Landon as a baby when she's sleeping. looks like Austin as a baby when she's awake. smells oh so good. HATES pacifiers but takes a bottle. likes to be swaddled. gets a little gassy at night. falls asleep instantly in her car seat if it's day time - hates it at night. is laying on my lap right now, while I type this one-handed. probably going to hate pink when she's older because everything she has right now has some kind of pink in it (I can't help it! after all the boys I'm loving pink!).


Landon { N O W }

age: 7
nicknames: Land-o, Landondo
loves: school. star wars. reading. sports. dessert. Phineas and Ferb. playing with friends. legos. building things with stuff from the recycling. mom! snap circuits. riding his bike. going to church. wii. DS. running/wrestling/playing with Dad. movies. home lunch - NOT school lunch. getting notes from me. things to be whatever his idea of "perfect" is.
what i love about Landon: he has so much energy. he can be SO SO helpful (when he wants to!). he loves having a schedule - he'd THRIVE on a written check list for every minute of the day. he is always telling me how much he loves me. he has a great imagination. he can remember EVERYTHING he reads. he (usually) will share anything with Isaac. he always wants to be "having fun" - he's learning how to make his own "fun". still loves to snuggle with me
looking forward to: scouts, getting baptised, going to Disney Land someday, becoming a Lego Designer (or astronaut) when he grows up
this is the only picture I got of Landon playing basketball this season.... uh, I know he's not even playing! this is after the game when he's fighting for Austin's raquet ball. I missed all his games this season because I was in the hospital or home with Ella. This last game I REALLY tried to make it: long story short - feeding Ella, told the boys I'd meet them there, couldn't find the keys to the truck, Cameron came to get me, we got back in time to see Landon getting his after game snack!

Landon's room - he cut apart his Lego magazines and Star Wars Lego boxes and taped them all around his room.

This kid is pretty easy to motivate. Cameron made a deal with Landon that when he passed off his "50 in 0ne" (50 math problems in one minute - memorizing addition and subtraction 1-18) we'd take him to get a shake. We (mostly Cameron) worked on it with him (a little) over the weekend and he passed it off on Monday. I got to take him to get his shake. So fun - I learned all about sand droids, friends, and other random information stored in his head. I love that one-on-one time with him.

He LOVES to be organized. Even when he unloads the dishwasher he puts everything away in perfect order. Last time he cleaned his room he was in there FOREVER. When I went to check on him I found the reason - organizing his lego guys, complete with labeled bags for each type of guy.

Landon has a hard time focusing sometimes. (we often find him sitting in his underwear, "sidetracked" from taking his shower!) We have a pretty tight after school schedule for this reason. I have to be around to help/remind/nag him to do his homework and chores.


what day is it again?!

The sleepless nights are getting to me... I've been putting on a brave face, as in telling myself, "this is normal. it'll get better. no big deal." But I'm TIRED! I guess that's why I really have no idea what day it is. I feel SO busy, yet I get nothing done, really. Maybe a load of laundry or dinner or something like that, but for the most part I feel like I'm spinning my wheels. Going from one kid to the next and one task to the next, accomplishing nothing. Going through the motions, folks. That's what I'm doing. And in time, yes it will get better ( I know eventually Ella will sleep between the hours of 11pm and 5 am, right?!). But for now I need a nap!

valentines cookies - we did get these made, at least..

Austin really LOVES Ella. All the boys stop and give her hugs and talk to her but Austin, especially has a special bond with her. He changes her diaper (with assistance) and is always there to help with her bath or get her dressed. Austin gets, litterally, heart broken if he can't hold her when he wants to. Cute big brother.

this is the answer I get everytime I find a mess from this boy. most recently: "why'd you color all over the table?" and " why is their sticky finger prints all over the couch?" My next question, "why do I keep asking him why he does these 2-year old things?"

this little girl doesn't love her tummy. But the other day she hung out like this for 20 minutes looking at these "little people"

Cameron, a.k.a. Super Dad, made up for my lack of planning - he took the kids to pick out Valentine's presents (legos, of course) on Saturday. Then he got up early on Sunday and made us all pink heart pancakes - before 9 am church. The kids thought that was awesome.

I've had a lot friends and neighbors bringing treats and meals. It's been so nice. Tons of phone calls to check on me. There are great people here. These are the thank you "cards" I've given back to them. Although, I have some great friends, I find myself missing my "past life" (as in Iowa and Colorado). It's just so different here. Could I still be adjusting to the move? Who knows. I think I'm adjusting to new baby and lack of sleep.

This cute smile makes me smile. I love him. It makes it worth it to go through the motions...



I had my friend, Amanda, take some pictures of Ella. I love the way they turned out. Amanda did a great job. Thanks, again.
We took these pictures a week ago - I can't believe how fast Ella is changing! I swear she looks bigger and has more hair already. Time is going by so fast.

love the little spit bubbles - she's always blowing bubbles in her sleep!

*these two are my favorite*

FYI - no I haven't forgotten that I have other kids!! I have a ton of things to catch up on - including, my "picture of the day" project (yes, I'm doing it again this year - I LOVE my 2009 book). I've got tons of pictures of the other kiddos. I'll be posting again soon.


..T O D A Y..

.. Ella is 2 weeks (and 1 day) old ..
.. her nose is still squished but not as flat - if it doesn't go back to normal she's going to HATE it when she's older. for now it's a battle scar of birth that I think is pretty cute ..
.. she weighs 7 lbs and 7 oz and grew an inch since she was born ..
.. I got up and got Landon to school on time after only 6 hours of VERY interupted sleep - her days and nights are still mixed up ..
.. I made it to Ella's two week check up barely on time ..
.. Isaac and Austin look like little rag-muffins (wild hair, messy faces, breakfast on their shirts) ..
.. Austin is wearing pants that are NOT too short for him - I finally got the next size bigger of jeans out for him ..
.. my wedding ring finally fits me again ..
.. I let the kids ride bikes for a half hour after lunch .. (see how neglected they look?! Zac's boots are even on the wrong feet - I have NO idea where his shoes are)
.. Isaac told me, no screamed at me, "I don't want - MOMEE. ANY MORE!" when I made him come in for his nap ..
.. the breakfast and lunch dishes are still in the sink..
.. I've changed 7 diapers ..
.. my neighbor brought over banana bread ..
.. I ate a piece and a handful of tortilla chips (and a resse's when Austin was out of sight) for lunch ..
.. I still haven't returned the phone calls of some of my friends that've been calling to check on me ..
.. Austin wanted to hold Ella - he is a GREAT baby sitter. Austin, especially loves her ..
.. Austin ate half a bag of pretzels and a poptart for his "snack" while I was feeding Ella (the crumbs are still all over the kitchen) ..
.. I'm going to do a load of laundry ..
.. Landon is going to do homework after school and then, I'm going to help him finish sewing the hole in his sock back together. He's been asking to learn how to sew, so a holey sock seemed like a good way to start ..
.. I'm going to get the dishes done ..
.. bed for all of us at 8:00 - I hope ..
The {NEW} Normal is not glamorous, by any means. Lots of craziness with a few small victories (Zac didn't yell at me or try to hit me when we had to leave this morning) and some "tender mercies" thrown in. Life's not easy but it is really, really good.


S N O W day

Mountain Home has some funny traditions: February 6 is "Mountain Home Snow Day". The schools are closed and the base shuts down. Everyone is supposed to go out and enjoy the snow.

Funny thing is - there isn't any snow that sticks around here. You have to drive into the mountains to find the snow. We live about 45 minutes away from some pretty mountains and and a resevoir. Really, so much prettier than Mountain Home {or, Saudi Arabia, as we call it}.

Anyway, Cameron got an extra day on paternity leave since "Snow Day" was the day he was supposed to go back. So we took the kids up to the mountains with the snowmobile.

{Two babies were admitted to the hospital the day we left with Ella. Our pediatrician gave us a pretty stern warning about RSV and flu this year. We're not supposed to take Ella out in public places for 6-8 weeks. (I think it's mostly because the emergency facilities here are not the best and no one wants to life flight a baby to Boise) So, anyway, I'd only left the house once or twice since I'd been home from the hospital so I went along for the ride.}
It was fun seeing the boys have such a great time with their Dad, especially Landon. Isaac hung out with me and Ella in the truck most of the time and he was still happy and having fun. That kid can't get enough of "The Wheels on the Bus". Austin has fun pretty much no matter what he's doing and his last "wish upon a star" was for snow. So it wasn't surprising that he had a grin from ear to ear the entire day.


one week {PICTURES}