Wednesday, April 23, 2014

1 by 1


Monday morning, I looked out into the backyard, and I had a daffodil. 
1 daffodil blooming!  

When we were building this house, we thought we'd be in by the holidays of 2010, so in the fall, while the house was still being built, the boys and I planted a couple dozen daffodils.  Only, then they mowed the dirt, rearranged things, it was another 6 months before we moved in.  So I didn't get 24 daffodils.  And I haven't been up to tending to it.  This year, I only got 1. 

But it was a pretty one.  

But it made me decide, that this fall, I'm planting more.  I didn't use to enjoy yellow flowers, but as I get older, I love them.  They ARE spring to me.  So when Costco has it's annual bags o' bulbs on sale, I'm going to buy some yellow daffodils and some tulips.  

In the meantime, I'm going to get healthy enough to Plant them come fall.  My friend S* started a group, to get refocused on our health - you know, diet and exercise.  I wish there was an easier way, but it's a fact, Diet + Exercise = Results.  So that's what I need to do.  I hate hate Hate the diet part.  Many in the group are beginning to track calories on an app called  So I checked it out, got started. It's got a great food list, but the exercise is a bit...meh.  It's like facebook for exercise, it posts updates and your friends can encourage you.  I'm not sure what I think about it yet.  But I do know that I'm tired of not moving my body, of not being Able to move my body.  Time to lose the weight.  I may not be able to do much exercise but walk for a while, but I will try.  
Monday, I tracked my calories, just as an fyi.  I wasn't sure how much I was eating a day.  Answer:  a lot!  Well, I decided to go for a walk, but since Chris had karate, I thought I'd walk the parking lot while he was in there.  That would have worked, except 15 minutes in, it started to rain.  :(  But 15 minutes is more exercise than last week.  And more than the week before that.  It recommended for 1 pound of loss a week that I do 1700 calories.  I think I can do that.  It doesn't sound to terribly drastic.  For me, I want to get back into the routine of exercise before I really get drastic on the diet.   Of course, ideally, I'd like to lose more than 1 pound a week.  But I don't want to be too drastic.  I want it stay off, want to redo my lifestyle to that which I had before I got sick, when I could like, move my body and stuff.

And I'm going to have to walk before I run.  Literally.

So, we get 1 flower at a time, or lose 1 pound at a time, it's coming 1 by 1.  And I'm going to take that 1 as a step, and build upon it.  Even if it is only 1, it's a beautiful 1.  I will be happy with each simple 1 pound I lose, just as I am for the beauty of this one simple daffodil.  I am grateful.

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Happy Easter!


He is Risen!

What a Beautiful Day! 

In our family, in our Faith, Easter is the most important holiday.  More important, more significant, than Christmas.  If you don't believe in Easter, that Jesus rose from the dead, than he is just a nice guy with some good things to say.  But for those of us that Believe, this day, it isn't just about gifts and candy, but that we Remember, that Jesus died for us and Rose Again.  He is Risen Indeed! Alleluia!

Now I tell the boys that we do gifts at Christmas, and candy and presents at Easter because of Jesus.  We are so Grateful for the Gift that he gave us, his Love, that we want to give to others too.  Since we can't give presents directly to him...yet, we give presents to each other!

So on Sunday morning, the Bunny paid us a visit, and brought the boys some goodies.  The boys couldn't wait to get downstairs and get serious about finding eggs, and digging into some candy.

The boys were really happy that the bunny brought them their own containers of Peeps in their favorite colors.  

They took their buckets and got straight to work! 

Baby's first Easter!  
He dug right in finding an egg or two around the coffee table, and I gave him one that was on my seat on the couch.  Jacob had a lot of fun just shaking the eggs.  With the jelly beans inside, he thought they made a great noise, he didn't actually need to eat any of them.  He didn't eat any of the Easter candy, just our honey flakey biscuits from breakfast, and he was pretty ok with that. 

The boys show off their hauls!  
They got a Lot of eggs! 

Jacob doesn't want to share his egg.  He kept sneaking down the couch and table while shaking.  
He would not let go. 

The grass in our Easter Garden has grown up.  
And the 'tomb' was empty! 
One of our favorite things about this day. 

Now this one was because my husband was sweet.  He had to be at the church at 7:30 to practice with the bell choir for the early service.  So after the mad egg hunting dash, he left.  And the boys and I puttered around, snacking on sweet things, and making biscuits for breakfast.   When Eric returned, he had brought some Starbucks back for me (us).  Surprise!  I had given up Starbucks for Lent, and how happy I was that not only was Easter here, but I could drink again!   

When Eric got home from church, he and the boys wanted honey flakey biscuit egg sandwiches.  Traditionally, I don't do the egg sandwich part, that's exclusively a Daddy treat.  
He treated us. :) 

Then we got the boys all dressed and handsome in their Easter shirts.  
This year, Chris and Sam picked out their shirts, happily agreeing on a shirt.  
So it wasn't too awful to get them dressed up. 

All 5 of us camped out on the front porch. 
The best pic is used for the scrapbook page up above.  
It's rather difficult to get 5 smiling and looking at the camera at the same time. 

We gave up on trying to get Jake to smile, he wanted to go for a walk.  

So all the boys went for a walk.  
Time to walk down the sidewalk, get in the car and go to church. 

I love how this turned out.  
Off on our journey.  

 Our day certainly didn't stop there, but I did forget to get the camera out when the Fam came over for lunch after church.  Jacob was a hot mess because he didn't appreciate that I was wearing a dress, aka 1 piece I could not nurse during church.  So he was exhausted during lunch, but didn't want me to be out of sight. Too much excitement and cuteness, and good food.  Mom brought a ham, veggie tray, mashed potatoes, sweet potatoes; we had Hawaiian bread, strawberries, drinkies.   My nieces and nephew came too.  I was so hungry by the time we ate, I didn't even care that I sat down at the kiddie table....until both my nieces, and my elder sons started singing from the Frozen soundtrack.  It was dueling Frozens.  I got a headache real fast.  And Jake was a hot mess. I went upstairs to put nap him, woke up mysteriously 2 hours later :) 
But I felt better.  

Sunday, April 20, 2014

Wherever we go, that's where the Party's at!


Yesterday was a crazy busy day.  But what a Beautiful day for Parties.
This song was in my head all day.   But yes, it is humbling.   It felt good to be so loved, that our presence was requested all over town.  And Blessedly, we were able to pull it together enough to make appearances, and visit with all our loved ones.

First thing, we went to lunch with my Dad, for the best wings in town at Brozzini's.  The kids were all bedecked in Easter-y cuteness.  They were so cute, and they managed not to cover their outfits in pizza or wing sauce.  Can't say the same for myself.  ;)  But no one wants to see me, here's some Cuteness.

All 5 grandkids by the fireplace at Oma and Opa's. 

But we've developed a new tradition of posing in the flower garden.  
My dad and stepmom have the prettiest garden.  A couple years back I put the boys there surrounded by tulips, and then we added the girls too.  Placing 5 kids among the daffodils was tricky, but they sure were sweet. 

And who can resist all this turquoise cuteness?!

Just so happens the bunny stopped at Oma and Opa's house while we were at lunch.  
So, as soon as the photo session was over, it was Kids Gone Wild. 

Even Jacob got in on the egg finding.  He found a little rubber ducky. 

And Jacob was not sharing. 

Jacob joins the big kids and everyone shows off their haul!

This is my friend J and her sweet baboo, M.    We went to college together, but now they live in TX.  They had a rough pregnancy, much like Jake and I, chock full of drama.  But here they are 8 weeks later, perfectly healthy, and in town for his Baptism and Easter.  Their family held a 'Sip and See', basically an open house to come by and meet Baby M, and visit with his parents a smidge of course.  It just happened to be just a few minutes away from my Dad's house, perfect timing when he suggested lunch.   

 J's family was giving out treats for the kids that came by, there was a bin.  Each of the boys picked their own favorite color of sunglasses.  I grabbed these red ones for Jake, and then put him on his head.  He smiled big and cheesy, but before I could take his picture, he pulled them off, and tried putting them on his own head himself...on the side.  Close babe, close.

Yeah, look what I got.  I got to feed a little bunny bottoms a bottle.  I just happened to be holding him when he woke and started snipping, and there was half a bottle handy.  Jacob Did Not know what to think about that. There was no way to capture the 'Watchu talkin' 'bout Willis' look on his face, but that was it.  He was not in the place of sharing his Mommy.   But holding this sweet Miracle made my uterus flip.  

But we couldn't stay too long, because it was Sam's friend's birthday too.  Her birthday was back up in Brownsburg, and it was a Rainbow Dash pony party.  Surprisingly, all the girls AND boys were pretty pumped about it.  Sam loves My Little Ponies, and that's great, I loved them too when I was his age.  And Care Bears.  Sam and I dig a lot of the same shows.  The cake was yummy, and the company fun too.  

After we got home, we realized we'd forgotten to dye eggs.  Gasp! 
So we boiled them and pajamified the boys as quick as we could prep it.  And all the boys (and I) gathered around the table to dye eggs.  It's funny how predictable Chris and Sam are with their eggs, they want their favorite colors all the time. Sam had 2 green tubs in front of him, and was making green eggs, he made like 4 different shades of green, and Chris made blue eggs.  I was a weirdo for making pink. 

We drained the eggs in this colander, which Sam decided make a great headress.  What a silly boy. 

Since it was rather late, and the next day was Easter, we read the story downstairs while we finished cleaning up the egg carnage.  Sam picked the story, Skippyjon Jones, which is their new favorite story.  Jacob even likes it, a little bit.  But we got ready for Easter.  Eric and I are a mixed marriage, I love to do/eat hard boiled eggs at Easter, and Eric likes to deal with plastic eggs.  He says, if we lose one, it's not a big deal.  I say, you Count the hard boiled eggs, and you won't lose any.  I never realized before we met that some people do real eggs, and other plastic for hiding.  I was so set in my ways.  Now we kind of mix and match our traditions.

Well, whichever we do, real or plastic, it will be a great holiday because of the time we have gotten to spend with our family and friends;  whether rain or shine, or day or night, nothing is as sweet as my sweetboys. :)

Friday, April 18, 2014

Good Friday


The boys made an Easter Garden at church in Sunday School last Sunday.  
This morning, the blades of grass are beginning to grow. 
I felt that was some powerful symbolism as we celebrate Good Friday.  

Gone to the Zoo


It was another Beautiful Spring Day.  I couldn't stand it.  The butterflies and flowers at the zoo were calling my name.  And after seeing the Ansel Adams exhibit earlier this week, I've just been Itching to go get some pictures, to be able to snap some stuff in manual.  I wanted to get some pretties.  I had been hoping to just take Jake down and not have to worry about any of the big kids, but Sam is pretty good, so after Kindermusik yesterday, we packed up a lunch and went down the White River Gardens by the Zoo, and had a picnic....with the butterflies and flowers.  

I will say, I was unimpressed with the new staff, who was trying to give me crap about taking my stroller in, when it was clearly Not crowded enough to warrant that.  And Jake was half asleep, that was not cool.  They acted like I was going to run over butterflies with my stroller.  Really?!  I'd be more worried about my kid stepping on them, than my stroller.  At least I know to watch out.  And really, we scope the stroller out when we leave to make sure we have no hitchikers.  Not a problem.  I've been going to the butterfly exhibit for Years, and never ran over a butterfly, and only once has one landed on my stroller for more than a second.  And I took pictures of it until it flew away.

I will say that this week the butterflies were interested in the kids and I.   We got in there, and one almost immediately landed on Sam's hand.  He lost his shit, shrieked like a little girl, and flung it to who knows where.   Now THAT would worry me more about the butterfly's health than the stroller.  Not sure why he flipped out this time, I guess he's just used to being there with Chris and they make so much noise the butterflies stay away.  My theory anyway.  The butterflies were in a great mood and came around us a lot.  Consequently, we didn't stay long, because Sam was losing his mind, so we went outside to Discuss how buttterflies are completely different from bees or wasps....and had a picnic lunch.

I did shoot completely in manual though.  So here's some of the pretties I captured.

When we first arrived, we got buzzed by 3 (count em 3!) Blue Morpho butterflies. 

I found this pretty monarch taking a sip on a gerbera daisy.  

Very cool.  Looks fake. 

Sam started getting a bit edgy about being buzzed by butterflies, so we stopped and focused on the fishies.  That went over a bit easier.  

I went to sit down on a bench, and was immediately joined by this pretty blue morpho butterfly.   He wasn't opening his wings to show the blue, but he did let me get really close.  

And this Cuteness. 
Who can resist all this?!

The hyacinths were in bloom.  As soon as we walked out into the gardens, we were smacked by a wall of smell.  It was heavenly.  I love the smell of fresh hyacinths in spring.  

I need to plant purple hyacinths.  

The daffodils were blooming, they were so pretty.  
Even sweeter with a small Sam nearby. 

Time enough, and flowers enough for Sam to stop to see if the daffodils smell too.  They do, but it's very faint.  And Sam didn't smell it.   I smell it though.  Smells like Spring!

Ah, and the snowdrops. 

This year, none of my snowdrops came up here at home.  I only got one small group of greens, no flower. 
Luckily, the zoo's were up and glorious.  

They are so pretty.  One of my spring favorites. 

Since they face down and hang at a funny angle, I have to get down on the ground to capture them.

I love this angle. Weird, but awesome.  
No I didn't lay down in the dirt...but my camera did. :) 

This pretty is called Windflower, specifically the Blue Shades.  
I wouldn't mind planting some of these around here either.  

Woohoo- the first of the tulips were starting to bloom too.  
We'll need to go down there next weekend or so, maybe around my birthday, for our annual tulip pictures. :)

The spot where we had our picnic had a little planter with pansies and these little white allysum.  
These Sweet Allysum were very happy in the sunshine. 

Time for a snack, how about a banana? 

Banana - na na.  Do doo, do do do. 

Jacob enjoyed his lunch of a veggie mum-mum and O's by the flower gardens too.

He slays me. 

He kept trying to pat Sam, although really it was more of a hit on Sam's head.  But Sam didn't mind, he's so good-natured. 

This flower is known as the Lenten Rose. 
A perfect flower to be in bloom on Maundy Thursday. 

OK, Mom, enough of the flowers, I want to box my brother. 

This was my cue it was time to go.