Typical Day.

posted on: Monday, February 25, 2013

Our wintertime routine has become pretty mundane these days. Almost robotic-like, both babies awake by 7:30, cartoons while I make eggs and green smoothies for breakfast, laundry-doing and train track building all before lunch and if I am lucky enough to put on non-stretchy pants before noon I chalk it up to a productive morning. 

By mid-afternoon when the jitters become too much to handle we venture out to the post office and the grocery store where Brecken takes a few laps up-and-down the food aisles all the while I chase along making sure Miss Grabby Hands stays in the cart. Naps, email checking, and laundry all get done in record time so by dinner I can put my stretchy pants on (again). Dishes, bath time, reading, prayers, and teeth brushing all flow together in an effort to have Brecken tucked into bed nine. And if we're super lucky Addison falls asleep by ten which leaves a hour or so for John and I. Again, if we're lucky...:)

Today's events were not different. Addison wanted a crayon. Brecken gave into her request. Addison then ate the before mentioned crayon. Brecken noticing that the crayon had been chewed into smithereens and proceeded to have a dramatic meltdown while holding the remnants of a once vibrant blue crayon. And as expected Addison enjoyed the spectacle he performed. So basically it was a typical day. 

And did I mention, tomorrow is the special of all special days--Brecken goes to preschool. Which means showering without a little person pulling the shower door open and folding laundry without my piles being destroyed. John and I also have this thing now where we get to sneak in a one-on-one lunch date during Brecken's preschool day as well. I'm sure you can imagine how completely out of my element I now feel when I get to eat a meal without having to feed a baby and cut food for toddler simultaneously  Who knew food was actually served warm...

His//Her Smoothies

posted on: Friday, February 22, 2013

The unexpected surprise of moving to a small, hole-in-the-wall, town is that we don't each fast food anymore. Sometimes I miss the luxury of a quick meal on-the-go, but having lost an additional eighteen pounds on top of my pre-pregnancy weight seems to make it okay and on this 5'1'' petite frame that's a lot! We've also changed our eating habits too--no more potatoes, lots of cottage cheese, less pre-packaged junk, smoked chicken at snack time, quinoa at dinner and these nifty little smoothies every morning. Surprisingly, John hasn't minded the addition of smoothies to our lives, except for the color. He can't bring himself to drink a green one. So I've improvised--to make his smoothie more eye-appealing I usually throw in a handful of raspberries to brighten it up, and it works like a charm!

The recipe for our green (red) smoothies is easy:

//handful of spinach
//half a banana
//five or six strawberries
//one mango (chopped)
//handful of frozen raspberries and blueberries (for John's smoothies)
//half a cup of orange juice
//crushed ice (optional)
//My SIL also adds agave and yogurt.

//blend well (I use my magic bullet or my blender). serve chilled.


Also, check here to see if you won the VinylKrazy $50 Gift Certificate Giveaway

Ice Fishing

posted on: Thursday, February 21, 2013

Last weekend a break in the sub zero weather gave us an opportunity to take the kids out ice fishing. We were fishing later in the afternoon which isn't the best time for catching anything, but it did give Brecken the opportunity to run and work out his wiggles. Poor little guy has been cooped up for weeks so it was nice for him to stretch his legs and run. And running he did--he really showed no interest in fishing and he was pleasantly content to just run back-and-forth across the pond. Whenever we go out I am always leery having Brecken on the ice, he is so curious and often times he's curiosity puts him directly over the ice holes.  Luckily he was more interested in chasing his shadow that we didn't have to worry about him falling into the water. Addy on the other hand wanted to crawl in the snow, so quarantining her to a chair was less than ideal. When she finally resigned to that fact that she wasn't getting out of the chair she settled on chewing everything in site--hence the picture of the glove in her mouth. Even though we didn't catch any fish, it was so nice to soak up some sun and smell the fresh air. I sometimes forget how rejuvenating a change a scenery can be, even if it is just for a few hours. 

I've also found that my mood is starting to improve, Kambrie thinks I have seasonal depression. I wouldn't argue with that--I am always happier and more delightful to be around when the sun is shining and I can get out of the house. And with the days getting longer I also find myself anxiously awaiting the arrival of Spring. As soon as Mother Nature will all it the jogging stroller will be out again and afternoon dates in the park will start to become our daily routine once more. I guess I owe the credit to dear ol' Punxsatawney Phil, that smart little guy said Spring will be early this year--let's hope he's right! 

9 months.

posted on: Wednesday, February 20, 2013

I can't remember all the details of pregnancy, what I do recollect is the slowness of time. Days seemed like weeks and milestones for each prenatal stage followed suit and bordered on the lines of eternity. eternity, I tell ya! And yet it seems so surreal that the last nine months have gone by so quickly. It's still not clear to me on why time has seemed to glide by with such ease since your birth--maybe it's your gentle mannerisms that make raising you so easy or your brother's playful connection to your every move. Honestly, a small part of me believes that not having to fight with my body for space within my own skin has made this time more enjoyable as well. come on, somebody agree with me?

Oh Addy, what a joy you are. I've joked that you've become my fifth appendage because if you aren't attached to me you certainly want to be. It's a love/hate relationship with the whole nursing thing. But alas it has proven to be the long lost connection I never had with your brother. Unlike him, your birth was timely; without incident or the frightfulness of losing you. Born healthy and on time culminated into one happy baby--willing to sleep through the night, prone to only cry during diaper changes and a natural at eating (and holy batman you can eat, and I can produce. around here I'm a milk makin' factory). Unlike your easiness, raising your brother was hard--maybe the hardest obstacle I've encountered. It's not his fault though, we were new parents, naive to the world of late night feedings and completely out of our element about the needs and demands of a preemie, it was the epitome of "baptism by fire." Your easiness on the other hand can presumably be attributed to already knowing the ropes of this crazy parenting business (seriously, somebody write a book about naive first parents ;)). 

This is not to say there aren't days when I throw my hands in the air and scream "I've had it! Two is enough!" or nights when I lay in bed listening to both of you crying wondering where is the closest hole I can disappear into for a few hours. But then each morning without fail your two-teeth smile peeks out from your crib and I know that the moments of loneliness and frustration are small snippets in time compared to the joy of watching you grow. And growing you are! Two teeth and counting. And if that weren't enough those little feet of yours are being to dabble with the idea of standing. You're still a bit wobbly and out of your element, but I sense the days of crawling may be gone soon. Maybe the greatest change is your sense of curiosity  You reach out for food during meal time, steal your brothers toys when he's not looking, and have found a new fascination for the toilet. Got to nip that in the bud quick, folks!

Your sweet smile, your chewy chubby legs, the smell of your hair, and your dainty fingers that play with my face while you nurse make loving you so easy. Happy nine months baby girl, you are loved! 

xoxo, Momma


posted on: Monday, February 18, 2013

This cool cat turned 29 yesterday. I've been with him through the majority of his twenties, a feat that his sisters would call a miracle. :) No matter what the case is, I'm so glad he's mine. He's deeply loyal--so much in fact that even if I'm set out to fail he still steps up to bat for me. He's kind of sweet that way.  He's strong and steadfast and has somehow been our rock during our hardest times. Even during the happy moments he's always carefree and has this witty sort of sense of humor that turns me into an obnoxious school girl per se (sad, but true). And if that weren't enough, he's an amazing Dad--gentle with Addy Mae and playful with Brecken. He takes his role of Dad seriously, and is there really anything sweeter than a man in love with his babes? I think not.

The laundry list is long and I could go on for days. And yet, somewhere between work, laundry, diaper changes, and kid wrestling he still find time to flirt with me every now and then (because let's be honest, that's really all a girl wants anyway)...

 Happy {late} Birthday, 29 never looked so good.


posted on: Thursday, February 14, 2013

Is there anything sweeter than a old couple still in love? Perhaps it's their delicate care for each other or their symbiotic mannerisms that show years of togetherness that make old love so beautiful. Either way, the act of growing old together pulls at my deepest heart strings. My Grandparents have molded this vision by proving that although their love story wasn't always perfect it only fueled the passion that love can triumph. High five, Grandparents!  

I remember in college a brief moment of clarity about joyful love that happened while visiting my grandparents. My Grandpa had just gotten back from golfing or playing in the garage (the details are fuzzy) and my Grandma was meandering around in the kitchen preparing dinner. Meanwhile, my sisters and I had made ourselves permanent fixtures on the couch while watching Friends. Ross and Rachel were talking about wearing silky pajamas, an innuendo about sex I suppose was the brunt of the joke.  Then out of the blue my Grandma nonchalantly remarked, "When I wear silky pajamas your Grandpa chases me around the house too."  

ew. (but cute, only because it came straight from the mouth of my sweet little Grammy). 

Shocked and a bit taken back by her remarks we scoffed as they both laughed at their inside joke. Though not out of the ordinary for them to throw out such remarks because if you knew them then you'd know that inappropriate jokes, flirtatious kisses, love letters written on post-it notes, and the occasional butt pinch were commonplace in their house. This playful banter was part of them until the day my Grandpa died. I look at their story and find solace that their love was bigger then themselves, they had to trudge through the rough times to only come out stronger on top. They found perfection in the other's faults and maybe just maybe found the meaning of endearing love. 

I hope someday that John and I can find that same rhythm to life and if that doesn't happen there's to always hoping that he will chase me around the house when I'm 75 years old... 

Wherever you may be today, I hope you find a little love in your life as well. Happy Happy Valentine's Day.

xoxo, Halsey

VinylKrazy Giveaway

posted on: Wednesday, February 13, 2013

 //CLOSED// Winner Jess Brooks, you lucky lady!

If you know me then you know that I have a nasty habit of hammering holes into the walls of our home. I don't have the patience for measuring or using a level so I end up making six holes (or more...yikes) for every one hole, basically I hammer away until the picture is perfectly placed on the wall. This little habit drives John crazy when it comes to repairing the wall damage. When I found out about vinyl lettering both our worlds changed--no more hammering, hole making, wall dinging, or patchwork was required--vinyl lettering has become a win/win for all (and in this house that's a miracle)! 

Today the VinylKrazy store is generous offering a $50 gift certificate to one lucky reader. 

Here are a few ways to win:

//Follow the VinylKrazy facebook page (1 entry)
//Follow the VinylKrazy Pinterest boards (1 entry)
//Leave a comment telling me what you would love to do with your new vinyl lettering (1 entry)

Also, make sure to checkout the VinylKrazy facebook page for a giveaway worth $100 in FREE products (entry for this giveaway ends March 1st).

And if VinylKrazy wasn't generous enough they are currently offering 15% off your entire purchase with coupon code:  13HLWS213   and free shipping on orders over $50. 

Good luck! Giveaway will end Thursday 2/21

pity party.

posted on: Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Last week I threw myself a pity party in the wee hours of morning after a week of sleepless nights. I chalked up Addison erratic sleeplessness to being out of her element and away from her bed. My sister was there to pick up the scattered pieces each morning, she fed Brecken, played with him, and retrieved Addy from her restless slumber all in the hope that I could relish a few moments of sleep. (Thank you, Kam). 

When I finally cracked from a weak moment of despair I sat on the floor of my sister's guest bedroom and cried. With Addy in my arms I cried and prayed from sleep. I cursed God. I asked him why he gave me a baby that wouldn't sleep? (It wasn't my prettiest moment). I cursed John for leaving me all alone. I cursed him for calling his trip work, when it seemed to more of a "man-cation" to me--all the while I was dealing with dirty diapers, a three-year-old who wouldn't stop riding his sister like a horse, and a baby girl who wouldn't sleep or give me the luxury of a peaceful shower alone. Seriously, it was an overly dramatic lapse of time for me. Please tell me I'm not crazy? 

By the next morning I had once again composed myself  (and showered--it's funny how a simple shower can change one's mood, right)? Anyway, I felt sort of silly for my dramatic almost laughable behavior from the previous night. Honestly, what do I know about hard times and loneliness? Nothing really I suppose. Military spouses, single parents, grandparents raising grandchildren, the foster system and a plethora of other unfortunate situations seem to make my problems look like a walk in the park. However, I realize no matter what the circumstances may be, parenthood is hard. tiring. hard. exhausting. hard. tiring. emotional. lonely. tiring (you get the point). I am truly amazed by all of those individuals, who unlike me, are doing it "alone." You really are the cream of the crop! 

And if I've learned anything from the last week (or the last three years) it's that more than ever I am truly thankful for John. He wakes early, comes home late, carries the weight of the world on his shoulders and then walks in the front door ready to wrestle Brecken, change Addy's diapers, and read "Mr. Brown can Moo" to our little ones over and over again.  I can't say this will be my last breakdown (sigh), but please tell me there is an end in sight to Brecken riding his sister?!

road. trip. again.

posted on: Wednesday, February 6, 2013

John left earlier this week for Minneapolis so naturally I thought it only fitting for us to leave as well. On Monday I bottled up all my energy and sanity and ventured to my sister's house for the week. Once there I became invisible as usual. Brecken has always been naturally drawn to Kambrie. What are aunts for if they can't mug on my babies? 

Recently Kambrie and Joel moved to a quiet little town in northern Wyoming. A tourist trap of sorts full of souvenir shops, mom and pop dining, and historical outposts like the Buffalo Bill Museum. Yesterday, we ventured downtown to the Rib n' Chop House for lunch. Seriously, guys I can't get enough of that place. An intervention may be in my future. Anyway, if you go there get the fried green tomatoes, it's one of those appetizers that could double as meal and every bite is worth it.  er.mer.gersh. it's good.  We then popped across the street to the cutest candy shop. You know the kind--large bins of candy and rows of homemade fudge and chocolate truffles. Cute little ladies skirting behind the glass in handmade aprons serving up samples of lavender and lemon fudge. 15 minutes later and $20 dollars less was all it took to leave with the cutest little box of chocolate-y goodness. 

Hands down my favorite was the Sea Salt and Carmel Truffle. luuurved it big time. 

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