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Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Blessed

My parents were in town this weekend for my brother's graduation (congrats, Byron!) so we took advantage of their visit and blessed Isabelle while they were here. It was a busy day, being Easter Sunday, but it seemed appropriate to celebrate this precious new life on Easter. Both of Isabelle's grandfathers, four of her uncles, her great-grandfather, and her father stood in the circle while she was blessed. It was a marvelous gathering of priesthood holders. Her blessing was beautiful as was she.

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A word on Isabelle's blessing dress: I had intended to use the dress my mom made for Savannah's blessing. It is in mint condition and I wanted to see it used again. However, my mom had been cleaning out some storage boxes before coming to visit and had found an antique blessing gown. We're not sure whose it is, but it is probably 80+ years old and most likely a family heirloom. It was in fantastic condition so we tried it on Isabelle just to see. It was so beautiful and perfect for our little Belle. It just seemed to fit the old soul that I swear is in her tiny little body. I hope one day to discover whose dress she wore, but for now it is enough to know that Isabelle now has a tie with one of her ancestors.

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A photo log of all those who attended Isabelle's blessing:

My family. My whole life I've been told I'm a spitting replica of my dad, but lately I've heard more and more that I look like my mom. What do you think?
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Isabelle's Pendleton grandparents
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Uncle James and Aunt Katy
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Uncle Michael and Aunt Ashley
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Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Yard work

We have a big yard. It was a major selling point for us when we bought our home. We wanted a place for our kids to play, a place to entertain, a place to have a garden. What I forgot to account for was that a big yard = high maintenance. The first year, we tried to keep it up. The second year, we gave up and let it grow wild. This year, we decided it's time to make it more manageable. We picked a section of our yard that needed to go, then enlisted the help of our families to rip it out. Over a grueling Saturday, almost a third of our backyard went into a dumpster. Rocks, trees, old firewood, bushes, even dirt ended up getting trashed. It is refreshing to have such a large blank canvas to work with-- now we just need to decide what to do with it!

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My mom took it upon herself to transplant all the bulbs we ripped out to the front yard. It's amazing what a little color can do to improve the curb appeal of a house. Thanks to everyone who contributed in the back-breaking day!

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Monday, April 25, 2011

Super birthday

After months and months of counting down, Logan finally made it to his 5th birthday. He turned 5 on Tuesday, April 19, and two days later we hosted a birthday party for him. This was the first time I planned and put on a birthday party other than the usual cake-and-ice-cream-with-family celebration. I let Logan pick the theme, guest list, and cake. He chose a superhero theme and I had the idea to make each guest a cape and mask. After I had made the first one, I was questioning whether it was really such a good idea, but I had already bought the supplies so I was committed. It took one late night to get them all finished, but they turned out super cute and were a huge hit at the party.

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A few days before his party, I realized I had invited 10 kids over (not including my own) and no adults. Jeff would be at work that day, and I would be on my own. In a panic, I called my brother and sister to see if they could come help. Thankfully, they both were available that day and came to my rescue.

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For two hours we fed and entertained the hyper, cape-clad group. The kids decorated their super-emblem and then we played pin the emblem on Mr. Incredible. My amazing sister, Paige, whipped out the drawing during the first 20 minutes of the party. The kids were gathered around her the whole time, fascinated with her artistic creation.

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We also played game involving stuffing balloons into oversized clothes to create muscle men. It took a little convincing to find two kids that would let me put Jeff's shirts and pants on them, but everyone was in hysterical giggles by the end of the game.

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When they weren't eating or playing games, the kids were chasing my brother, Byron, and attacking him with balloons. I don't know why, but Byron always ends up getting attacked when he is around kids. He's such a good sport.

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These two were the real superheroes of the party. Thanks guys, I couldn't have done it without you! (Paige would only pose for this picture if I promised to make a shout out on my blog. No worries Paige, I would have mentioned you anyway!)


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Logan at 5 years: 40 lbs (48%), 42.5 inches (68%)

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Enjoying every moment

It's a busy week this week with Logan's birthday, my brother's graduation, Isabelle's blessing, and Easter, but I have to take a moment to blog about my sweet baby. A stranger told me yesterday that looking at Isabelle made her baby hungry, and I thought to myself, "I'm baby hungry-- and I have a baby!"

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At 1 month old, Isabelle doesn't do much. She eats, sleeps, gets mauled by her brother and sister, and spits up. A lot. Her eyes are definitively blue, but her hair hasn't shown any sign of lightening. Speaking of hair, Izzy's locks are her defining feature. Nearly everyone who meets her says the same thing: "Look at all that hair!" She has enough hair that I can actually put hair clips in it, and not just the itty bitty clips, either. We're talking full size bows and flowers. I could probably even manage a tiny ponytail, but I haven't tried it yet. Savannah loves Isabelle's hair and is always telling me, "Her hair's so squishy, huh?!" She reminds me of the little girl in Despicable Me who declares her unicorn is "so fluffy!"

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I don't know what it is about this third baby, but I have really enjoyed every moment. Maybe it's the noise and chaos that comes with the other two that makes me appreciate the peaceful nature of a newborn. Anytime I can, I sneak away to a quiet corner and spend some time with just me and my baby. I could cuddle her forever. Don't grow up too fast, Isabelle.

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Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Projects

My parents left to go home on Monday. My dad had only been here for a week, but my mom had stayed for over three weeks. I can honestly say it has never been so hard to say goodbye. (And they'll be back in two weeks for my brother's graduation!) My mom was so much help while she was here and I loved having so much 1-on-1 time with her. The month or so before she came (before Isabelle was born), I was super-nesting. I like to think I was making up for the inability to nest with the other two kids since we moved the weeks of their births. Both Logan and Savannah moved into new rooms, and the nursery needed some sprucing up. I had a list a mile long of things to get done before the baby came, but I only accomplished about a third of it. That's when my mom showed up.

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My mom is the best project-finisher in the world. She seems to have never-ending energy when it comes to projects, and she never cuts corners so the finished product is always perfect. For the three weeks she was here, I helped watched while she finished every item on my list. I still have a few things left to do in the kids rooms (like decide what to hang on the walls) so I can't post pictures of the rooms in their entirety yet, but here are some glimpses of all the things my mom made while she was here.

1. Kitchen curtains

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2. Matching valance (this wasn't even on my list! She just whipped it up out of extra material.)

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3. Valance for Savannah's room

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4. Window seat cushion

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5. & 6. Quilt and dust ruffle

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7. Pillows

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8. More pillows

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9. Valance for Isabelle's room

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10. Recovered chair for Isabelle's room


And all that doesn't include the day of yard work when she gave the front of my house a facelift. (More on that later.) I am seriously in awe of all she did. It would have taken me months to accomplish half of what she did in a few weeks, and then the quality would have been seriously lacking. And lest you think she is only a minor miracle worker, let me add that she also single handedly took care of my older two children the whole time, allowing me to focus on Isabelle. This included waking up early with them and letting me sleep in, feeding them, dressing them, getting Logan off to preschool on time, helping Logan with his reading homework, doing Savannah's hair (no small feat), grocery shopping, and even letting them sleep in her bed when they woke up in the middle of the night. If I can only be half the mom she is...

But let's not forget my dad. He was able to spend the first week of his spring break with us, during which he and Logan bonded over Angry Birds. The iPad hardly left my dad's hands the whole time he was here, and he was kind enough to alternate turns with Logan on each level.

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Thanks for everything, Mom and Dad! We miss you already!

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