twenty ten


i'm stoked.

we got a babysitter!


It was filled


with a night out to AVATAR!

A trip to the nature center.
(where yes, my daughter who is deathly afraid of dogs petted a snake)

Feasting in the best of company.

Giving and receiving.


Playing and making treats.


And finally...


I'm pooped.



1 full mini-van
832 long miles
8 sleepless nights

2 lucky grandparents
3 lovely aunts
2 fun uncles

1 stress-free daddy
3 happy girls
1 tired mommy

357 photos
52,698 calories consumed


1 big fat busted lip




A Sweet Story

Once there was a sweet little girl.

She had pigtails. They were sweet too.

She liked to play with her sister. They both loved to color, paste, and cut - creating works of art for their mother.

One day this little girl had an idea. She thought of all the other things scissors were used for.

And she tried to bring back the bowl cut - barely missing her ear.

Her mother (who was also very sweet) flipped out a little, cried, and finally just couldn't stop laughing.

Thanks to a some friendly advice they had a little fun with it before calling the hairdresser

and made a pretty freakin sweet mullet.

Then Jessie rushed over, assessed the damage, went to work,

and the sweet pigtails were no more...




our friends gave us a grapefruit off their tree and blondes has been begging to crack the thing open all morning.

she even brought it to my bedside when she came in to wake me up.

finally at 9am we made juice: grapefruit. sugar. water.

it was delicious. simple. sweet.

i wish that i could tell you that keeping things simple is all in the spirit of christmas, but to be honest for me it's a little in the spirit of i'm exhausted.

my plate has overfilled. i'm cooked. juiced.

when my father-in-law came to us with his christmas plan this year i was ecstatic:

  1. each adult draws one name
  2. create/give something meaningful to that person
  3. take the money you would have spent on the million people you were going to buy gifts for and put it together
  4. in a few years after doing this everyone takes a big trip together
  5. have a white elephant exchange to spice things up
i thought it was fantastic.

no more lists.
no more mindless shopping.
no more feeling like i spent money on gifts that may or may not be liked/appreciated.

that being said i still feel like i have a million things to do.

  1. make and send out cards
  2. laundry
  3. finish sewing the aprons i made for the girls
  4. finish painting peg dolls for the girls
  5. shower
  6. clean out and wash the van
  7. laundry
  8. wrap gifts
  9. laundry
  10. pay bills (including tuition for block III)
okay, so maybe 10 things. but still, i thought i was on break...


morning thoughts


The girls are making me art in their pj's.

Gigi has just woke from a little snooze on my bed where she had her sweet face nuzzled into my pillow - so now I get to kiss those huge cheeks more.

My head is clear. I passed block 2. Worries are minimal.

Planning for Christmas and the blessing of our new little girl.

Waiting to have E to ourselves for 2 whole weeks.

Excited to just be a mom for the next 6.

Anxious to spend Christmas with the Gardiner's.


glad we have decided to keep things simple.



thank you for helping me focus this week.

i'm off to kill my final.




Dear Santa,


Our mom is really busy. She has her final tomorrow night (which is pretty stressful),

but we haven't forgotten Christmas and all the joy it brings.

We haven't forgotten to trim the tree,


make hot cocoa, or even come to see you.


We are trying our best to celebrate the birth of our Savior and remember all of our blessings.

Please don't forget us Santa!

I've been a really good girl. I have even learned to tie my own shoes! Could you bring me a dollhouse? MaeMae wants some dress-ups, and Gigi...well, Gigi just wants fresh milk which I'm sure my mom can handle.

Oh, and thank you for sending our favorite elf Twinkle again. He is quite the acrobat!


Ava Sue


sleep baby.


because we all know what happens the minute you wake.



A little story about a life-saver

Brother Jeremy and I a couple of hours before it all went down

We go to the temple lights every year. It has become tradition - I guess.

We showed up around 5 and met up with some friends. The kids ran around on the grass and we waited for the big lighting. When the lights finally do come on it is beautiful. Unfortunately the crowd is insane and there are always a few rude people - like the lady who tried to mow down my brother with her stroller claiming that the sidewalk is for walking not standing. :)
(I wish there was a way to make a sarcastic smiley)

After all our oo-ing and awe-ing, accounting for all 6 children, and answering questions about baby Jesus and Christmas, we decide to make our way around to the front and out. There is a girl behind us with three boys. The baby is in the stroller crying his poor little eyes out. Actually screaming. I can't help but glance back at her and feel her pain. Having three babies is tough and mine look about the same age as hers. Sometimes there is nothing you can do but let the baby cry a little - as you frantically try to pull it all together. I faintly hear her toddler cry and loudly hear her shout out his name. I have MaeMae in my arms and when I look back I see that something is wrong. The boy is choking.

Without hesitation I go to her, put Mae down, and grab her baby out of the stroller - he immediately stops crying, but the boy is still choking and I know that he needs more help. His mom is patting his back and he is looking pretty bad - still breathing - but stressed. I tell her that I'm certified and ask if I can help him. She says that she had given him a Lifesaver and agrees let me help. I give her the baby. I kneel down behind the boy and give him a couple of thrusts to his diaphragm. He still chokes and gags and throws up a little. Easy grabs GM and is off for more help.

The next thing I know the boy is out of my arms and into another woman's who decides to turn the poor boy upside down. She holds him by one foot and slams him on the back with her other hand. By the foot! I am shocked. Shocked. She looks at me and asks, No? I stare at her hard. NO. She then gives him back to me and walks away. I give him another thrust and a drink of water. He is shaking, throws up more, and suddenly he looks different. It's over. The candy is in his belly. He looks okay. He is just scared. Shaking. His eyes are full of tears and he wants his mom.

After she is all put back together and ready to go I settle down my Mae. She is upset that her dad has removed her from me and the situation.

We all get to the cars and my adrenaline slows - I think about the boy who I popped a quarter out of his throat in Home Depot 5 years ago, I think of how in a year I'll hopefully be a nurse, and lastly, I talk Easy's ear off during the 20 minute car ride home.


3:30 early Friday morning I get the text from Lindy: Just leaving hotel :) You ready to shop?

Yep. She even added the cute smiley face - that's why I love her.

The truth is that I wasn't up, but I threw on a hoodie and some jeans and was ready in about 5. You all know how I feel about mornings, but I wasn't letting it bother me too much. Just going through a third pregnancy and having a newborn doesn't allow for too much sleep anyway - I have come to accept that my sleepy days are over.

The first stop was Sears for a camera (just like the one I lost 6 months ago) that we wanted in black, but it only was in red. Sorry. No red camera for me. Sears also had a tool set for Eric that my brother convinced him he needed to have. We stood in line for a half hour for the camera (that we didn't get) surrounded by the most interesting people - all of which were completely disheveled with rank stale coffee breathe. These people are crazy. Animals I tell ya. All except for one who happened to be right in front of us in line. She took time to put on her best holiday sweater with matching earrings. She was extremely chipper for 4am. She had her hair done and her bright festive red lipstick on, which made my yesterday's mascara look pretty bad. She got a TV and a surround sound system with the extended warranty and forgot her credit card. I swear we stood behind her for days. Nonetheless, she was excited and you could see it in her eyes - no one was going to spoil her Christmas.

Then it was off to WalMart with even more crazy people and odd smells - some of which had slept there. We waited in line an hour taking turns to find a few items. I was smart to grab a magazine as we trudged along.

We hit Target next, walked in and walked out when we realized the line never actually ended - it just wrapped around and around and around the store.

After some hot cocoa Lin dropped me off at 5:30 and we were greeted by a drowsy E at the door. He wanted to see our treasures though they were few. The house was quiet and we fell back asleep on the couch together. It lasted only a half hour as we woke to little girls screaming that they were hungry, toys strewn all over, and a baby ready for a diaper change and nursing.

I just don't know Black Friday, next year, I think I'll take my sleep.




and everything else that comes with it...

along with a few pitfalls:

while swimming we were attacked by bees - well i guess that we were the ones who actually were invading their territory. maemae kept telling me that she had an owie and would point to under her armpit. about 30 minutes later my brother asked what happened to her back. i looked and there was a huge splotch of red, inflamed skin across it and a little stinger placed every so neatly in the middle. i guess it was just dangling there for a half hour. poor baby didn't even shed a tear. a few minutes later my nephew stepped on a bee and was stung - this is when the swimming ended.

little children and vintage wagons don't mix well even though i'm sure in the 80's they were intended to. the wagon had to be confiscated when child after child came in crying with bloody limbs.

waiting 45 minutes for the best pan pizza in town is a bad idea with six tired active kids.

and we discovered that the van has an oil leak. ugh.

more to come...including:
my first black friday and saving a kids life at the temple lights.


gratitude on a tuesday


i'm so grateful for this girl. she brightens every second of my day. she is smiling, coo-ing, and working to steady her bobbly head. She is already 10 1/2 lbs - music to a nursing momma's ears.

i'm grateful for a good man who treats me entirely too well. he is my perfect teammate and i love everyday i have to share with him.


i'm grateful for good food which we will be enjoying a lot of this week, with these people:

my brother and his family (whom i'm also very grateful for)




Thanks for all the birthday wishes!
She had a fantastic little party with a fantastic little cake,


and the most fantastic little friends (whom apparently my girls like to grope).


Four is big.

Like really big.

I can see the teenager in her. Can you? It's scary.

Four is so big that when you go to the doctor for your four year visit they give you four shots. You think you are just going to get one - but NO-NO-NO. They give you one for each year! Two for each arm! Not only that, but it is totally normal for those shots to burn, have a local rash, and even cause you to have a little fever.

So yeah-

Happy Birthday!


all honesty

let's face it. everything always seems so perfect in blogland. too perfect.

we make it perfect. we only let people see what we want them to see.

and this is why i love 'keeping it real' posts.

so here is

The Dirt Uncensored.
for your own nitty-gritty pleasure.



.toy corner.
where is the carpet?

rarely made


looking homely



still there
notice how i didn't include the kitchen sink? you can guess why.

showered. whew.


we r out


so if i don't answer your calls, or respond to your email, comment on your blog, or "like" your status update...

you know why.

this weather is irresistible.


let freedom ring!


i can't wait for tomorrow.

i will not set my alarm and it will not ring at 5am.
i will not meet for pre-conference at 6:30am.

i will not spend my day sucking up to cranky nurses and searching for a victim to start an IV on.
i will not change any dressings, pass out any pills, give any injections, or ask anyone about their bowels.

i take that back - i'll still be inquiring about bowels.

i will not eat funky cafeteria food.
i will not awkwardly sit in an office to pump my breastmilk and long for my baby.


i will take a minute to snuggle with Easy in the morning.
i will make breakfast - pumpkin pancakes?
we will go see the temple, have a picnic, and cruise Ikea.
we will play.
we will enjoy.

we will be all together.
all day long.
for the first time in months.


baby hungry?

i am.


i could just eat her.


and i imagine she would taste just like fresh gingerbread.


No-Poo Update

I went two months without shampooing my hair. Every other day I'd rinse and condition. Weekly I'd use baking soda and vinegar to reset it.

Here is the deal:

I loved how it looked and it wasn't stinky.
I just didn't really like how my scalp felt. By the end of the week I was dying to get the baking soda/vinegar on it - which felt awesome and made it look awesome.

I had Gigi and that is when I shampooed for the first time.

Then came the must-have postpartum cut/color where I discovered Purology products. Sulfate free. Cone-free. Love it.

Also speaking of poo. Mae is totally potty trained!!! It was a long process with a very distracted mommy, but I'm so proud of my little-big girl!




we have thrush.

i swear it's the most awful thing.

kinda gross.
totally painful.

like i want to rip-out-my-hair-and-scream-all-sorts-of-foul-words whenever i nurse kind of painful.


warm wishes are welcome.




i did well. passed my test on wednesday with flying colors. it feels great.

it means that i don't have to stress. it means that i can do this. it means that my house will be clean.

it means that i get to enjoy all my favorite things,

my three girls.
fall in arizona.
time with friends.

...until my final hits in december.




that is what this little birdie and i are doing today. it's just us here in my quiet and very messy house.

my most thoughtful, loving, and supportive husband has taken off with the wild ones.

and well, gigi and i have had our time off - our time to bond and rest.

but now i have to get cracking and fill my brain with all sorts of useful information for this week's big exam so i can pass block 2, or the nursing block from hell, as i affectionately call it.

no projects, no cleaning, no laundry, no fancy meals...just books, power point presentations,

and of course, my gingersnap.

p.s. don't you just love that receding hairline?




i can't believe we are cleaning up halloween already. it kinda makes me sad. i love halloween, but unfortunately we were a little too busy this year to entirely take it in.


and i can't believe that both my mom and Easy's parents have come and gone. it makes me feel like thanksgiving is tomorrow and christmas is next week. it basically is, right?

anyway. we can't stop it.

on completely different notes:

  • today at target a random girl came up to me and said how i could not have just had "that baby" in my sling and fit into "those jeans" that i was wearing. it made me feel good even though "those jeans" were cutting into my love handles like a mother and i had to take them off as soon as i got home.
  • i have a huge test this week in class but have totally been struggling to keep motivated and have my heart in school. i just had a baby for crying out loud! all i really want to do is just kiss and snuggle her all day. it would be a lot easier if she didn't smell so wonderful.
  • this saturday is my last clinical until next block. hallelujah! it makes me want to split town in a bad way.
  • i think i might want to get rid of the chickens. they poop too much.
  • Easy wants a pop-up camper and i'm not totally convinced. any thoughts?
  • i have decided that pumping is not entirely like "eating dirt" with an electric pump, but i still feel quite cow-like.
  • we got a new washing machine this weekend on craigslist for $65. i'm enjoying doing laundry without feeling like the house is going to come down on top of us. wait. what? did i say enjoying? that is so not what i meant....



she had to get "a tiny tiny one for my baby sister."

she picked a very dirty one.

and she slept because...well, that is just what she does.



new baby. two toddlers. exhausted husband. 12 hour clinical.

it was a long one.

but we refused to miss out on the fun.



she dozed in the car.

and this was close to the cutest thing i've ever seen.


and they got a lot of reese's which makes
Hays and Easy very


a week


i'm in utter love with this girl.

and i'm sorry, but she leaves me no choice but to litter The Dirt with her perfectness.



headband tutorial here


it begins

i dropped my mother off at the airport about an hour ago.


so we are on our own for a week until Easy's parents arrive.

it makes me a little nervous...


even though she is quite perfect.
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