Thursday, March 29, 2012


So I begged and begged Derek to build me a clothesline before he left. The thought of being able to be outside in the yard with my kids while doing actual chores just made me happy. I am also using cloth diapers now and the best way to dry them is on a line, the sun will actually bleach away any stains, and they last much longer if you don't put them in the dryer. Anyway, of course it didn't take much to talk Derek into a new project, but finding the time to fit it in was difficult, and because he is so incredibly awesome, he made sure it was done just in time :) I was able to dry my first load of laundry yesterday and I was probably way too excited about it. We also decided to put a smaller line up so the girls could help out. They love it and it really does help me a ton.

Adding the line to the posts

Isn't it beautiful?!? He seriously whipped this thing up in about two hours. 

Put the girls to work right away

They were so proud of their hard work

I am so happy with the way it turned out. Derek, once again,went above and beyond what I had imagined. He's pretty awesome like that. :) 

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Wordless Wednesday

So I'm not really sure how this whole linking up thing works. But I came across a random blog a few days ago that was doing "Wordless Wednesday" and since I love photography so much I decided to join in. I can't figure out where it originated, so I don't have an actual link, but I think the idea is to post a picture with no description each Wednesday. So here goes:

Monday, March 26, 2012

Garden (part one)

It's late and I don't have much time to write this, but I wanted to go ahead and get it going since it will be an ongoing post. This winter I casually mentioned to Derek that "I would like to have a salsa garden or something this summer" imagining in my head a small planter box with a few different veggies growing on the back patio... well if you know anything about my husband, then you know when he heard "salsa garden" he imagined something quite different. Of course he jumped at the opportunity to get started on an outdoor project and began planning the garden in January. It was a long process, mostly consisting of Derek spouting off a ton of information (in what may as well have been another language) and me just smiling and nodding like I had a clue. I'm pretty sure he caught on to the fact that I did NOT have a clue when I asked him how to water a garden yesterday :)

Anyway, after MUCH planning and intensive labor (all Derek) we have the beginnings of our garden, and I am so terrified excited!!! I have no idea what I'm doing, but Derek has promised to help me (from the middle of the ocean) learn along the way. At least if I screw it all up he won't be here to see it right?

Progression of our very first garden:
I wish I had pulled out my camera sooner because this first photo definitely skips a few steps. This was taken after he had dug out all of the grass with a shovel and then tilled the ground with a rented tiller. It was a 3 day process.  

Here he is building a border to keep the weeds out

After the border, before the soil was added. 

He worked so hard on this, I am so lucky :)

Today he added the trellis for the tomatoes and beans, and a couple of cages for the cucumbers. This is also after the soil was added and the seeds were planted. 

Cage for cucumbers

Close up of trellis

Details. Derek made these markers out of recycled milk jugs. 

We got tomatoes, peppers, and eggplants as plants the rest we are starting from seeds. 

I didn't help much with setting up the garden, but I did learn how to cut the grass, which I did today. 

After all of our hard work we threw
some steaks on the grill :) 

I will be posting all summer about the garden as it grows and keeping a progress report. Here's to praying there will be something to report. lol

Thursday, March 22, 2012


Hey guys,
   Just wanted to stop by and let you all know that I am not abandoning the blog... just been REALLY busy preparing for deployment. We've been spending every free minute together as a family, so I haven't had time to sit down and gather thoughts for a blog. Most of my evenings are spent going over the list of last minute things to accomplish before the big departure date. I have, however, been posting some pictures to Flickr. I'm sure once we figure out a new normal around here I'll get back to blogging, but for now it's just not on the top of my list. Be back soon!!!


Thursday, March 8, 2012

Happy Birthday Eli and Sophia!

Oh my... my little baby Eli is ONE YEAR OLD!!!! I am pretty sure this has been the fastest year of my life. Especially considering that Eli actually turned one a month ago and I'm just now getting around to writing a blog about it. Derek was underway for Eli's actual birthday so we didn't celebrate until he was home, and even then, we just did a little cupcake and sang happy birthday to him since we were planning a joint party for him and Sophia in Georgia. He suddenly seems so big lately. Maybe it's because he's standing up more and taking steps (I think 8 steps in a row is his record so far) but he does seem really big, and he thinks he is so big too. He has discovered that although he can not walk, he can climb; and the kid climbs everything!! I am constantly having to stop him from going up the stairs and even caught him sitting on top of the girls table a couple of times, lol. For a while I could just set things in front of the stairs and keep him off of them, but now he has figured out how to move everything out of the way and squeeze past. He's such a happy boy, always smiling and even though he's a "mama's boy" he will let just about anybody hold him (as long as I'm out of sight). He doesn't say much, but he will copy anything you do. His check up isn't until April 9 so I don't have an exact weight for him, but according to my scale he is around 18 lbs, so he is finally putting on some weight!! He's sleeping through the night and has stopped waking up for that early morning nursing session, so he is officially weened. I am a little sad that our special cuddle time is gone, but happy to get a few extra hours of sleep in the morning. He has become attached to his receiving blankets that I used to swaddle him in. He likes to cuddle them when he is sleepy and suck his thumb, but it has to be those specific blankets, no other will do. In fact, he will throw it as far as possible if you try to give him another kind of blanket, lol. The kid knows what he likes.

2/8/11 & 2/8/12

Sophia also just had her 4th birthday! FOUR?!?!?! Really?? My sweet baby girl is growing up so fast! She is such a serious little girl, very matter of fact, but she also has this silly side to her that I just love. She is so much fun to be around and she say's the funniest things. My favorite thing she has said lately was last night at dinner. I was talking about how big she was and it made me feel old, and she said "Mommy, you're not old!!! Your new!!!" :)  She is technically in pre-school (at home) but she is already learning to read. I have a feeling reading is going to be one of her favorite things to do, she is always lost in her old little world of imagination.

This is her signature pose

While we were in Georgia we decided to go ahead and have a joint party for them since we don't get to see family very often, and they would rarely make it to a birthday party. Sophia is still having a party this weekend with her friends, but this was the "family party" I guess. Here are some pictures from the event.

Yummy food and cupcakes
thanks to Mimi and Aunt Lori

Kid's table

Daddy was telling her happy birthday

Comparing baby pictures of Derek to Eli

Aunt Lori and Uncle Greg

Abby told her parents she wanted a little brother
(I guess she forgot about the one she already has)

Sophia and her Pops

Me and the birthday girl

Bubbles are always a big hit at parties

The only kid I know that HAD to open the
card before the present. lol

Aunt Lori got her a Rapunzel doll and
a dress for her that matches

It's stuck!

Mimi and Pops got her an awesome
new baby stroller

And Gram-Gram got her a bike

Matthew and Shannon (Derek's cousins) were so
 thoughtful and brought little gifts for
Ansleigh and Alyssa too. 

Eli was cranky at this point so I only got one picture of him opening gifts

This is while we were singing "happy Birthday"


Then we had a silly string war!

Our big girl :)

Derek and Pops also made balloon animals
and hats

They all went to watch Sophia ride her bike down the street

Showing off her Rapunzel dress.