Monday, March 31, 2014


Reed is pretty sure he is super big. And he is, for the most part. Anyway, he always likes to help with Lila and really enjoys picking her up or having me hand her to him while he's standing up. I think that makes him feel pretty big. Anyway, one day I was feeling terrible. I was laying on the floor and Lila used me as a stepping stool to get on the coffee table several times. When  I moved, though, she couldn't make it up on top of the table.

Enter her big brother.

She was happy to be up; and he was pretty pleased with himself for helping her up.

And then she climbed down--to request to be boosted back up five minutes later.

Saturday, March 29, 2014


It happened. I registered my baby for Kindergarten. I have two questions: 1. How am I old enough to have a Kindergartner? 2. How have five years passed so quickly?

Reed was ridiculously excited to register for school. Our school is year-round, so we went first thing in the morning on the first day of registration to hopefully have a good chance of being on the track we want to be on. We stopped for a photo opp, of course. I submitted my papers only to realize that one of the papers I brought was the wrong paper. Noooooooo.

We had to go retrieve the correct paper and return to the school. Reed was fine with that, though, because he didn't like the first picture we had taken--it was so bright outside that he made "binoculars" with his hands. He came prepared with sunglasses for our second attempt. I'm not joking. And because Reed was so serious about the event, I even grabbed the camera while I was at home instead of just relying on my phone. Asher flipped a lid when I tried to take a picture of Reed only (I think poor Ash was a little jealous), so he had to get in on a photo, too.

See you in August, school!

Thursday, March 27, 2014

Driveway Dance Party

One day, it rained.


When it rains in the desert (even if it is only a drop or two), we try to take full advantage of the experience. So when it started raining (sprinkling) last week, we donned our jackets and headed outside for a walk. First, the boys did a driveway dance party, where Reed demonstrated "the kind of dance I like to do like when we're campin' and I can't get on the ground." Aforementioned dance included a lot of booty-shakin' and some finger pointing and fist pumping. Yes, it was fantastic. (Side note: his dance moves usually include break dance-esque antics all over the floor.)

Things got REAL goofy. I was dying. Lila enjoyed watching her brothers go crazy and bobbed her little head along. And, well, her leggings just kill me. Don't mind her socks, Ashie Bee picked the socks out and thought they looked spectacular.


Eventually, we made it off the driveway and the boys shared an umbrella (to shelter them from the four or five drops that fell) while we walked to the mailbox.

Isn't everything just prettier when wet?

Friday, March 21, 2014

The Monthly Lila: 14

For whatever reason, Lila is a big fan of me holding her cup for her. At mealtimes, she doesn't like to have her cup on her tray--she'll often push the cup off when I put it there--and prefers for me to hold it for her each time she needs a drink. When I give her her milk cup, she turns my hand over and puts her cup in my hand for me to hold. She's so silly.

Dolly suddenly really cares about her "lovies"--specifically, her crocheted giraffe (she likes something I made!), her snowman blanket (from cousin Haley), and her London bear (from Kayla + Grandma). After her naps, she usually stands up holding one of these items out to me, then I grab her and the item, then she makes a noise and reaches back for her crib, so I grab item number 2, then she makes a noise and reaches again, so I grab item number 3. Only then is she content--she grabs it all and lays her head down on top of her stuff, leaning against me. SO cute. When I put her down, she cuddles with her stuff while we rock, then I lay her in bed and hand her her stuff--she grips it tightly and just giggles practically. She is a doll.

I was holding Lila's sock one day and asked her where the sock went (not expecting a response). I was surprised when she lifted up her little foot! Since then, whenever I have shoes or socks, she holds up her feet for me. She also gets upset on occasion when a shoe comes off and instead of putting it back on (for the fifth time!), I take the other off. She certainly has opinions.

On March 18, Lila started doing a fantastic bear crawl. I don't remember the boys doing this, and I really love it. She crawls with her legs and arms straight and her little bum up in the air. It is SO funny. In the last few days she has also been getting so brave, using me to stand up or just pushing off the ground to stand, then balancing for up to a minute before sitting down! She still hasn't attempted steps, but I'm hoping these are signs that walking is coming soon!

Lila has discovered the boys' Mega Bloks. She really loves taking them apart. And, if I hold a block for her then hand her individual blocks, she can stack them up pretty high!

I just love the way babies eat.
Sometimes Lila will stop at the top of the stairs looking down and just start yelling. All I have to say is, "Go piggies first," and it's like she remembers she knows how to go down stairs--she immediately flips around and goes crazy-fast down the stairs. It's kind of hilarious.

I wasn't feeling well and was lying on the ground reading a book. So, of course, Lila used me as a stool to get onto the coffee table.
If Lila ever "disappears, " the first place I look is the boys' room. The boys' room is, of course, home to the choking hazards, so it's her favorite place to be. Really, though, she loves their room because she loves them. She goes to their room because she is looking for them. If she's downstairs with me and hears them upstairs, she almost immediately takes off for the stairs. I love it.

Really though, how cute is she in shorts?
The other day Asher and Reed were riding bikes and Lila was in the stroller watching them with me (per usual). I asked her, "Where's Ashie?" and she immediately pointed to him, then started waving! She's not really a pointer, so I kind of loved it. She doesn't like watching the boys ride bikes if the stroller is stationary, but loves when we go on walks with the boys while they ride bikes.

Lila LOVES this little bike. She can't go forward, but scoots backward like a madwoman.
Lila has started to give kisses! Really, kisses are more like open-mouthed attacks to the receiver's face, but I love her kisses nonetheless. If you ask her to give you a kiss, she giggles, open her mouth, and dive bombs your face. It's amazing.

Can you guess who she's looking at? $5 it's one of the boys.
At bedtime, Lila loves to wave to the boys, then give them five. She's particularly adamant about waving and fiving Asher when he goes down for his nap. Lila has been able to clap for a while, but doesn't really do it frequently. I think she forgets she knows how--but when I say "yay!" and clap, she starts smiling and applauding.
Lila's hair has really started to come in and it gets darker all the time. She won't leave anything in it. The back is starting to curl up as it grows in!
Lila makes a LOT of noise, but not a lot of variety of noises. She has some sounds/words that mean very specific things. "Mama" and "Da" I think are pretty obvious (Mom and Dad). She says "Buh" for brother (Asher and Reed), but she also says "Buh" for "boo!" (as in peek-a-boo). Today I was trying to get her to say "Baby" and she was trying SO hard, and ended up with "buh...buh....bee....beee..." Love her tiny voice. 

Lila has eleven teeth that have broken through her gums and is working on one more (I think). She was a nightmare for her first molar, but, thankfully, her second molar just broke through without much issue.

Just using the lid as a chair.
Sleepwise: Lila sleeps from 7 pm-7 am and naps twice a day, usually from 9:30-11:15, then from 2-3. Her afternoon nap is kind of issue-y, but she does NOT do well with one nap (which we get to experience on Sundays, when she misses her morning nap at church). I have worked SO hard on Lila's sleep habits. She is not a naturally good sleeper. But, if I keep a consistent routine, she does really well. It's interesting--small disruptions really, really affect her, whereas small changes didn't really disrupt the boys. For example, if I let her sleep in for more than 15 minutes past her usual wakeup time, her first nap is super short (even when I adjust waketime). If she's more than 30 minutes late for a nap, her naps morphs from 1.5-2 hours to 20 minutes. I work hard to get us out of the house around our schedule, which usually works pretty well, and if she stays on schedule she does great! We stayed at my mom's house last weekend and my mom ended up putting Lila down for bed one night and for a nap another day. My mom commented on how good Lila is about realizing it's nap time and cuddling up and settling down--how she was a good little baby and a great sleeper. Honestly, I hadn't really considered that, since I've had so many issues with her sleep. Every time we get it figured out, something throws us for a loop again. But she was right! Lila will be partying with the boys and cracking up, and as soon as I take her in her room, grab her stuff, and sit in the rocking chair, she (usually) settles right down. We rock for a few minutes, sing a song or two, and I put her in bed. And she generally goes right to sleep. The times she struggles more I almost always find her blankets and stuff on the ground post-nap, and assume she threw them out before falling asleep and had to fall asleep without them, since she doesn't usually throw stuff after she wakes. She is a content little baby and puts up with a lot from her brothers, a lot of stroller time, and is usually pretty chill. We sure are lucky to have her.
She almost always has something in her mouth but is pretty good about handing whatever the item is over if you ask what she has.
Lila still gets super mad while I'm trying to make dinner. I have to either distract her by putting her up in the boys' room with them before I start (which she loves), or by letting her be on the counter with me and providing her with a pile of snacks. Otherwise, she holds on to my legs and cries!

Lila is a climber! She is pretty short so is not usually successful unless she's got a step to use--but she can find a lot of steps. She will use almost anything to boost herself up (k'nex boxes, me if I'm on the ground, stuffed animals, various toys, etc.). She loves little chairs (we have a few kid-sized chairs) and will climb up and down, up and down, over and over.

The Monthly Asher: 41

We like to listen to music in the car. One day, our CD of church songs came on. Asher said, "Mommy, I don't like church songs. But I'm like okay with church songs."

He was helping me cook. I asked him to say cheese and he could NOT keep his tongue in his mouth!
The boys were playing with some sea creature toys. Reed said, "This is an electric eel. It can kill people." Asher responded, "But I like every people bubba!"

Kind of gross, kind of hilarious.
On laundry day, I asked Asher to get his blue soft blanket (his go-to) so we could wash it. He melted down. He was so distraught but finally had an idea: we'd take a picture of blue soft "so I won't forget him!" We took a few pictures, then he happily tossed his blanket into the washing machine.

A few of my favorite words he says: "nest-es" (nests), "alsowy" (also), "May-you" (Mayo). He loves to request a "ham sam with may-you and cheese." Which actually means cheese melted on bread with nothing else. Reed and I were having ham sandwiches and Asher wanted a ham-sam, but like with no ham. Reed was having mayo, so of course Asher wanted mayo with his cheese. I knew that he would not love that, though (he hates sauce, dressing, and dip of any form), so I just went with cheese. It was shredded cheese, so I melted the cheese so it'd stay on the bread. And the ham sam with may-you and cheese was born.

Asher has been working hard at zipping, buttoning, and at buckling his seatbelt in his new carseat and he has made a lot of progress!
Awesome Asher phrases from songs: "Bouncin' to the tire" (Real line: "dancin' through the fire" from Roar by Katy Perry). and "chop everything down!" (Real line: "drop everything now" (from Taylor Swift).

Sometimes Asher gets upset that he hasn't done something perfectly well. I bolster him by telling him he gets better each time and he'll catch on. One day I told him "good job" for something and he said, "I just get gooder each time!"

He built this. By himself.
We were doing school together one day and he responded, "This is easy!" to everything we tried. But when I asked him if he wanted to do something else, he definitely wanted to do school--just wanted to let me know that it was easy for him :)

Super awesome tower, super awesome pose.
Asher's number one used word: totally. (Or totawee as the case may be). As in, "Asher, do you want to go to the park?" Asher: "I TOTALLY want to go to the park!" or "Should we make cookies?" Asher: "We TOTALLY should!"  Or "Do you think Daddy will like this picture?" Asher: "He will like TOTALLY love it!"

They are so goofy!
One day I had to wake Asher from his nap. He still takes a solid nap, but if he sleeps past 4 p.m. he won't go to bed at night. He rolled over and immediately said, "Have you ever had umbrellas in the bathtub?!"

When Asher is deciding something, he usually asks me, "What would you pick if you were teeny?"

One day I was in the boys' room while they changed into pajamas and Reed told me that Asher likes to sit in the laundry basket to get undressed and say he is the laundry monster. I peeked in the closet and, sure enough, underwear-only Asher was in the laundry basket and yelled, "GRRRRRR! I'm the laundry monster!"

Asher's joke: What do you call a cow with none eyes? Hey cow watch where you're going!!

He got stuck :)
Reed lately has been telling me he's going to explode unless X happens. Asher has picked up on it, too. An example: Asher: If you don't take me home I'm going to explode! Me: I am taking you home. Asher: you made a good choose cause then I won't explode! *A note on choose: he often says "it's a hard choose!" or "it's a hard decide!" which I think is uber cute.

For the past 7-8 months, Asher's self-proclaimed colors have been pink and purple. Asher and I were coloring together yesterday morning and I was about to start coloring with a pink marker. The following conversation ensued:

A: Mommy, don't use those grill colors!
M: I thought you liked girl colors. What about pink and purple?
A: I gived up on pink and purple.

Friday, March 7, 2014

Who Are You? A Topic for Each Week of the Year {Week 8: Personality}

Week 1: Name/Birth
Week 2: School
Week 6: Grandparents
Week 7: Parents

What was your personality like as a child? Are you the same, or did something happen to change you? How would you describe your personality now?

I've always been shy and quiet around people that I don't know. As I child, I was very respectful of authority, mainly motivated by a fear of getting in trouble. I always behaved really well at school and other extra-curricular activities because I hated the feeling I got if I did get in trouble--it really made me upset. In one grade (second?), my teacher did the green card-yellow card-red card system. You started the day with a green card. If you acted out or did something you weren't supposed to, your card got changed to yellow as a warning. If you did something again, you went to a red card and a note got sent home. My card was green all day every day--except one. I had been playing with friends at recess and we'd missed the whistle signaling that it was time to go in. Once we realized that we were basically the only kids on the playground, we ran back to school. We were late--and our cards were changed to yellow. I was devastated. Seriously, I was SO upset. And I was never late back from recess again. As a child, I loved school and was always very studious and devoted to my schoolwork. I've always been a worrier, too. My mom used to tell me I'd give myself and ulcer from worrying so much. I'm a serious person, I guess you could say.

I'm making myself sound pretty boring. I will say, though, that when I was around people I was comfortable with (like my family and friends), I was super silly. One time I had a cold or something and discovered that when I exhaled my nose made a whistling sound. My brother would (nicely) poke my baby sister in the belly and say "Pillsbury Dough-Boy," then I'd make the "toot toot" sound with my nose. Weirdo. My oldest sister got me a key chain that said, "I'm not weird, I'm gifted." I love the key chain, because it almost perfectly summed me up. I had the nickname "giggles" in my family, which originated when my brother was talking to a girl on the phone and after I found out that he was talking to a GIRL (whom I knew and whom he'd been friends with for a long time) I started cracking up. He tried to get me to say "hi" to his friend (Rebecca), but I could not stop laughing long enough to even say "hi." I'm also extremely ticklish and, once I get going, you don't even have to touch me to tickle me.

I've always had a lot of self-confidence issues, which I think contributed to me being quiet or shy. I was really overweight throughout elementary school and got teased a lot because of my size. My parents walked for exercise early every morning and as an elementary schooler, I would get up early and walk with them in an attempt to lose weight. In fourth grade I got strep throat and had to go to the doctor. The doctor was an Asian woman who basically let me and my mom have it because I was overweight. I'd never felt so terrible about myself before. I remember her asking if I ever did anything active--and I did. I had dance class weekly and had club basketball practice twice a week, in addition to a weekly soccer or softball practice (depending on the season). I dreaded going to the doctor any time after that appointment. Anyway, because of my insecurities about my appearance and my experiences being made fun of, I kind of assumed that unless I knew for sure otherwise, other kids probably didn't want to be my friend.

Thankfully, as I got older I slimmed down a lot (though, really, I never would have called myself "slim"), which really helped my self-confidence. I started to do pretty well at sports, making the middle school basketball team and the all-star team a few years during city league basketball. I got a lot better at soccer and was an important part of my team. Playing sports was really important to me and really boosted my self-esteem.

I still see a lot of the same personality traits in myself that I had as a child. People I don't know well probably think I'm super quiet and shy all the time--when in reality, I'm not. I still am extremely self-conscious, but I don't feel like my worries inhibit me from trying things that I really want to do. When I'm with people I'm comfortable with, I'm different. I'm funnier. That may sound weird--but Ryan, who knows me best, thinks I'm hilarious. He thinks I'm funny because I'm more willing to say funny things around him, because I'm not worried that he will think whatever I said was dumb. I always worry about having people over, but every single time we do have someone over I wonder what I was worried about because I end up having a great time. I'm not very likely to speak my mind in a big crowd, but I'll share my opinion in a one-on-one setting or in a small group. I don't open up to people quickly--I'm not likely to share a lot until I know someone really well. But I think that's okay. One thing I have worked on changing about myself is going out of my comfort zone to meet new people. In the past year since we moved into our new ward, I've made a bigger effort to make friends rather than waiting for friends to come to me. And I think I've done pretty good. I have a hard time establishing those close relationships, but I thrive on having at least one or two good friends who I can rely on. I've also worked on worrying less. I'm not always successful, but I'm certainly less of a worrywart than I used to be.  

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Reed's Favorite Shoes

Reed has a favorite pair of shoes. They are a very simple pair of shoes, but apparently he loves them because he can get them on by himself and the stripes are pretty cool. He wears them at every opportunity.

Then the shoes started falling apart and looking really, well, homely. They were pretty cheap, so I wasn't surprised. I told Reed we'd just wear them for playing outside and such, but that I didn't really want him to wear them to school. He was, of course, SO upset.

Then the elastic of the shoes got SUPER stretched out. Like he would step out of the shoes at least once each time he wore them. I knew it was time for the shoes to go, but wasn't excited about breaking the news to Reed. The final straw came, though, when he was walking down the driveway, he stepped out of his shoe, fell, and smacked his head on the road.

The shoes had. to. go. And oh, was Reed upset. He cried. And cried. And cried. Finally, we came up with a solution.

1. Take a picture of the shoes. By "a picture," I mean several. From every angle.
2. Cut the fabric off the shoes. (I'm not joking.)
3. Create something with the fabric so he can always remember the shoes. (He's still deciding between a bean bag or a pouch.)
4. Next time we go to Costco, print the pictures to be put in a photo book.

We do not let go of things lightly in our house. To Reed and his shoes--RIP, shoes.

P.S. Why does he smile like this now??

Monday, March 3, 2014

The Monthly Reed: 63

One day the boys were fighting and Reed said, "Asher I love you and I know you love me so shouldn't we play together?"

Reed calls Lila "Lie-lou." He LOVES her and is super cute with her.
Reed has taken to saying, "If we don't do _______, I'm going to explode!" (He doesn't mean in a mad way, just like in a silly way...I think.)

It kind if freaked me out when you called me Reed. You usually call me refer or bubba or something. 

Reed is very methodical and really values precision.
One night we were waiting for Ryan to get home from work. I thought he should have been home by that point and I wondered aloud where he was. Reed said, "Nuggets! Where is that dad?" He saw "nuggets" or "awwwww nuggets!" all the time for "oh no" or something similar.

Reed found a penny on the road and exclaimed, "That is the dirtiest penny I've ever seen!"

Just swinging his hat around.
One day Reed told me, "I kind of like being dizzy because it makes me dance better." 

We were looking for a Valentine show to watch on Valentine's Day and the only two options on Netflix were Angelina Ballerina or Barney. We watched Barney for a few minutes, then Reed asked if we could switch to a different show because Barney, "was like kind of lame."

And then it turned into a dance move.

Reed and Ryan have been reading chapter books together for a while now and Reed really impresses me with his reading comprehension! He totally gets it and loves to summarize the story for me. I think it's helped him with his reading skills, too. We've been working on reading BOB books. Honestly, he easily tires of it. He really wants to read, but he doesn't love the process, if you know what I mean. Now that he's learned a lot of sight words, though, (only from reading the books) and has figured out sounding out, he does enjoy the basic books and does a good job of reading them. We are moving on to a little more difficult books with blends and different letter sounds and they are tripping him up a bit. He'll get it, though!

Woot woot.
One day Reed wanted to sleep in the same bed as Asher at bedtime. Asher is usually all for this, but for whatever reason, he didn't want to. We told them to work it out. Ryan overheard Reed reasoning with Asher, "Asher. If you like cuddle with me I will let you choose TWO shows in a row. TWO!" (They take turns choosing what show they can watch, so this was a big deal.) It totally worked.

Aaaaand he got so dizzy he fell over :)

One day we were outside and Reed starts doing this dance where his legs are spread wide, his arms are pointing to either side, and he's shaking his hips/booty like crazy. He said, "This is my dance move for like when we're hikin' or when I can't do moves on the ground!"

At lunch one day, Reed was trying to figure out how breadcrumbs are made. I suggested a smasher. He thought it was probably a puller with like a robotical arm--I think he might have learned that from How It's Made.