Sunday, October 31, 2010

Happy Halloween!!

We carved pumpkins on Friday. Tyler loved it and Brynlee refused to touch it because of the gross, slimy texture. I thought it was funny because she doesn't usually care about getting messy. But she would have nothing to do with it. She did entertain us by dancing to our Halloween music during the cleaning and carving though :).

Saturday: The Reeds were kind enough to invite us over to celebrate Halloween with them. Terra made a fabulous dinner in a pumpkin; a yummy butternut squash and black bean soup in one pumpkin, and sloppy joes in the other. Oh and I can't forget the cool bread in a spider shape. It was delicious. The kids had so much fun trick-or-treating. It was nice to go in their neighborhood, rather than ours. It's much more family/kid-friendly and the houses are closer together so we got more candy in less time :). We had such a blast being with them!

Above picture: L to R Katy, Alexandra and Brynlee, Jacob, Tyler, Bella

Monday, October 25, 2010

Too much time on my hands

During our spontaneous 10-day vacation in Houston, I had a lot of extra time on my hands. I didn't have a house to clean, no activities or appointments to attend, no friends to get together with, and I wasn't even the only one around to entertain my kids. So needless to say, I had to find things to do. I took the opportunity to do two of my favorite things, read and sew. I brought down a few things for my mom to quilt...projects I've had forever and needed to finally finish. It was most productive.
The first thing I did, I don't have a picture of. One of my best friends from high school, Melissa, just had twin boys. So I did some hooded towels for them. I sewed on some cute rick rack, and I took advantage of my mom's embroidery machine and did their names on the towels.
I also made a baby quilt for my little girl from start to finish. (Except for the binding I did here.) The line of fabric is called Bliss, and I think it turned out pretty cute. My mom did a great job quilting it.
This fall table runner I had made here, but again my mom quilted it.
This quilt I made back in...oh 2007?? It's been a while. I just never finished it. I couldn't find a back for it that matched for so long. But we went to a cute shop an hour away called "It's a Stitch" and they solved all my problems :). And I know it's another pinwheel quilt, but oh well. This was the first piecing quilt I'd ever made, and I love it.
Here's the back since it took so long to find, I gotta throw it in there. Again, great job on the quilting Mom!!

These last two blankets I didn't do in Houston, but I might as well throw them up there since they're recent projects. They're both baby blankets with flannel on one side and minky on the other. The purple one is for a friend, the white one is for my baby. They are so soft.

Reading: I read my first John Grisham book. My dad has like every book of his, so I decided I might as well give him a try and I read Kid Lawyer. I also got through Hunger Games and Catching Fire. I have since finished the series with Mockingjay since I've been home. I think I was the last person on the earth to read them, and I really enjoyed them. As in, I couldn't put them down. I am making Kenny read them now too, and although he may never admit it--he loves them too.

Sunday, October 24, 2010


Last night we went to our combined ward trunk-r-treat with the Glen Carbon ward. It was out at these people's house that have a lot of land and it was so much fun! It was supposed to rain last night but the rain held off and it was a beautiful, and very warm, evening.

Shortly after we got there Tyler was looking a bit antsy and said, Mom can I just go play with my friends? Knowing that none of his friends from our ward had shown up yet I said, who are your friends? He just says, "anyone that talks and plays with me!" And off he ran. He and this ninja boy immediately found each other, said hi, and were buddies the rest of the night haha. It was the cutest thing to watch. There was another boy too (both from the other ward) that was with them most of the time. The other kids were 5 years old, but Tyler's so big it didn't seem to make a difference at all. They had a blast!! I love how kids just don't care about anything, they just play together :)

They really were happy, despite the looks in this picture. We have a hard time getting them both to smile for the camera these days. Kenny and I were lame and didn't dress up this year. But Tyler sure loved being Spiderman, and Brynlee made the cutest little bunny ever. Every day Tyler wakes up and says "is it Halloween yet?" because he's so excited for it. So I was really glad we had this trunk-r-treat to hold him over till next week. They had fun at the different booths, and even went on a hayride! What a fun night.

Friday, October 22, 2010

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Can't think of one

Almost every night I dream of running. Sometimes I'm running with other people, sometimes by myself. But my body is strong and capable, and I occassionally leap over things like they're hurdles on a track. The speed makes the wind blow in my hair and my heart race.

Then I wake up. I probably woke up because whatever side I was laying on is numb, and it takes great effort and usually some pain to turn over to the other side. I'm careful to not point or flex my foot, trying to avoid leg cramps as I hoist myself up. I am in no condition to run these days, and walking alone usually does me in. I have a lot more hip and everywhere-else pain this time around. Must be the way she's positioned, or because it's my third pregnancy. But I'm hoping the next 6 1/2 weeks go by quickly.

At the same time, I want them to go very slowly. Brynlee is in all kinds of transitions right now--she's growing up. She's potty training (more of her own will than mine), and sleeping in a big girl bed. I try to talk to her about the baby in my tummy, but she has no idea what's coming. She'll repeat baby, and try to lift up my shirt to find the baby that I must be hiding, haha. I feel like the spacing of these two is just right though, again, and I'm grateful for that. She is such a big girl. She rarely likes to even be in the stroller, she likes to be the one pushing it.

Tyler was a lot different at this age. I think part of it is because she's a girl, and part of it is their personalities. But it's a lot of fun to see all the differences in them and try to adjust accordingly.

We're really loving this fall weather. I have all the windows open all the time and it's just beautiful! The kids never want to come inside, and I don't blame them. We've got to soak it up for the few perfect weeks that it lasts. Winter will come all too quickly, so we're trying to live it up while we can.

Monday, October 18, 2010

Catching Up

We had a very fun weekend! On Wednesday we flew home and Kenny picked us up at the airport. About 30 minutes after our flight arrived, my sister Kim and her baby Sam got here! We couldn't have planned our flights better if we had tried. They flew from Idaho Falls and I was so excited to see them! Samuel has grown so much since I last saw him, I hardly recognized him! It was so fun having her here, it really made me wish I lived by my sisters. They're my best friends and it stinks living so far from all of them.
We didn't do anything terribly exciting while she was here, just our normal day-to-day stuff. She left on Friday morning for Nauvoo to attend her friend's wedding, and got back Saturday night.
On Saturday we had a fun family day. We took the kids swimming in the morning. That evening we made a fire and roasted hot dogs for dinner, and had s'mores too! It was such a beautiful evening. When Kim got back, we put the kids to bed and watched the movie Temple Grandin while I hand-stitched the binding on the baby quilt I made.

Kenny and Tyler gathered up a bunch of pinecones and threw them in the fire once we were done with all of our roasting. I'd never done it before, but it makes the fire really bright. Kenny took some cool pictures and this one is one of my favorites.

Brynlee and Tyler just loved having "baby Sam" as they called him, here with us. It was really cute to watch them all interact. Unfortunately, this is the only picture I got with Kim and I in it, as sad as that is. And it's not even of the two of us, we're holding each other's babies. I'll try to pull my camera out more next time. Her flight wasn't until after 7:00 that night so we had the whole day with them and it was so fun. Come back soon! And anyone else that wants to come, we love visitors! :)

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

They were here, we were there

I figure I better get all the pictures off my mom's camera while I have access to them. I forgot to bring my camera so the only pictures I have are here. Anyway.

My parents, Tim and Sarah arrived Friday afternoon. We didn't have a whole lot of time while they came to see us in Illinois, but we were so grateful that they made the trip anyways, knowing it would be more driving hours than visiting hours. We walked down to the lake to show them Tyler and Bryn's favorite spot to throw rocks. It just so happened to be the week that they lower the lake (like every 4 years or something) so people can fix their docks, etc. So it was not the same, but we did find treasures! My dad and Tim found lots of empty beer bottles. They would throw them out into the water so they would be bobbing straight up and then throw rocks and see who could break it first. Pretty fun huh? :)

Saturday morning before Conference started we went down into Edwardsville to the fire station because they were doing a fun tour thing. We checked out the fire trucks, got balloons and free knick-knacks, and Tyler got to spray their big hoses at some fake fires. He loved it!

I don't think they ever stopped wrestling and playing around with their Uncle Tim. Tim would hold them in his hands and bench press them, or they lay on his back and he does push-ups with them on him. They think it's hilarious!

Now a few pictures of since we've been here...

Brynlee sings pretty much constantly. No one appreciates her singing more than Grandpa Andersen. Here they were singing along together, probably I Am a Child of God, one of her favorites.

The kids enjoyed "helping" uncle Tim wash the back windows. (Notice Tyler dousing himself with the hose and Brynlee playing in the bubbles...Tim sure puts up with a lot from them and they love him for it.)

We also went bowling and have just had lots of fun here! We are sure excited to go home to see Kenny though--we miss him!!

My Mom--Quilter Extraordinaire

My mom is a fantastic seamstress and quilter. She has mastered her skills over the years; starting with making all of her 6 girls matching dresses for every occassion, new pajamas for every Christmas, then on to prom and homecoming dresses, etc. She does blankets, purses, curtains...pretty much whatever she feels like making. For a while she has been working at a cute little quilt shop called The Feathered Star. Recently they went out of business, but she was able to get a really good deal on her very own quilting machine!! This is her new hobby and love, and it's pretty cool to watch her go after this dream of learning the art of quilting. She put in hardwood floors and turned this entire room into a quilting room. Good thing she's only down to 2 kids at home because her craft/sewing spaces are starting to take over!! :) I have a love for sewing that I'm certain wouldn't have developed if I hadn't grown up watching her. I still love coming home and learning from her as we tackle project after project. It's so nice to have such a good teacher on hand 24/7!!

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

In Houston

So remember how my parents and two youngest siblings were coming up to see us last weekend, over General Conference? Well they did and we had a wonderful time with them. Sunday morning came and they were getting ready to leave. I was still in my pj's, eating breakfast, as were my children. All of the sudden Kenny says "why don't you just go with them and then fly back?" He was serious. So we threw some stuff in the car and drove the 14 hour drive back here with them and here we are. We are having a great time, although I'm really missing Kenny. We'll be here for another week!! It was the chapest tickets. So I will update more later with some fun pictures. But that's what we're doing--hanging out with family in the nice, cool (!!!) Houston weather.