Thursday, June 25, 2009

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Sullivan is 3 MONTHS!

New tricks/going-ons:
~ Smiles on command
~Actually outright chuckles/giggles if you really work for it
~Has developed some serious thigh rolls
~Has graduated to being able to handle the "hip hold" (I can prop him on my side, legs straddling me and he manages well - still a little floppy, but he's growing into it beautifully!)
~ Totally aware now of people and their presence/absence (when I shower with him in the bouncy seat on the ground, he only seems happy when I peak from behind the curtain. otherwise, he's frustrated that I "left" him!)
~ Prefers being upright - wants to see the scene (I remember this being the same with Jackson - who wants to LIE down??)
~ Is keeping his blue eyes and, as predicted by insightful mom, seems to be committed to them
~ Loves his brother and smiles the most when Jackson is succeeding in entertaining him

Saturday was a PERFECT lake day

Thanks to good friends Shanti and Dave (whose parents own a home on a nearby lake and have lots of water toys!), we were able to enjoy a perfect day over the weekend boating, jet skiing, and riding on "The Pepper" (see Jackson de-mounting below).

We were concerned that our tentative two year old would be fearful of this first-time experience. But, alas, he must be a water-dude! He loved the vibrations of the boat and the wind against his face. In fact, at one point Jackson actually FELL ASLEEP sitting upright. Gotta love that state of relaxation!

Scott and I hadn't water skiied for a couple years... like riding a bike, baby. Like riding a bike.

Thanks SHANTI AND DAVE for a great day.

























Father's Day = Breakfast in Bed


Make your room

I've decided that EVERYONE needs a room.

I've got one, called the "whimsical sanctuary." It was founded on on May 12, the day Stacia and Aunt Jo left town. They helped create it with me - fresh vibrant paint, a work surface to create, a chair to read and reflect, and a spacious closet to store all of my crafts are among its features.

The vision started when I realized I was under-utilizing a small bedroom on our lower level. Instead of sitting back and allowing it to become to ultimate catch-all, I decided to make it my room.

I have spent so many hours there since. I love it. Sometimes I take the laundry there just to fold in peace.

Do you have a room? Or at the very least a space to go and be quiet? I HIGHLY recommend it.

My brother

Can you believe my chillins are sleeping in this morning? It's 8:30am. HOLY COW.

So with this unexpected GIFT of time, I am enjoying moments of reflection. And my incredible brother entered my mind.

I won't recap everything, but the basic story is that Justin has been struggling with substance abuse for a decade (or more?).

And in this month of June, I am proud to say that he is celebrating 5 months of sobriety.

I am so very proud of him. What courage, strength, and will it is taken for Justin to face himself. What's beautiful is that, while he acknowledges his role in the recovery process, he believes it to be the partnership with God that has made the active journey of restoration possible.

My brother is back. Jackson and Sullivan's uncle is back.

I am in tears, feeling thankful for Justin's chance to experience WHOLE life. Praise!

Don't...

... forget about the cheese you packed in a backpack and took to the pool as a snack for your toddler on the hottest day of the summer (98 yesterday!). Makes rediscovery the following morning when unpaking the backpack a bit smelly.

Not recommended.

Brings a whole new meaning to the Wisconsin-famous CHEESE CURDS.

Saturday, June 20, 2009

Trip to Florida for Stacia's graduation

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AJ and Stacia visit

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Cool new collage thingy I learned to do with Picasa... cool ain 't it?

Visit from Rachel
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Lots o pics

Scott said I needed to stop the text and start the pics! Ha. He married a talk/typer.

Here are some good ones from the past several weeks.






























































































































































































































































Friday, June 19, 2009

To never forget

Among the memories I never want to forget about my boys' childhoods, one was Wednesday. Scott came home from work (which involves a walk) with an empty plastic cup in his hand. He said I better get out there, because he wasn't sure how long the lemonade stand our neighbors were hosting would be open.

I was out the door with the boys in the stroller before he finished his sentence. LEMONADE STAND??? I am ALL ABOUT lemonade stands. First, I love lemonade. Second, I love children attempting (and succeeding) at being entrepreneurs. Third, I love summer and lemonade = summer. And fourth, did I mention I love lemonade? So off we went with 2 quarters in pocket.

Jackson a) doesn't normally drink out of a big boy (aka open top) cup and b) never - and i mean NEVER - drinks sugary drinks. Can you imagine how much he loves lemonade stands now? Once the sweet stickiness hit his lips, he had a DEATH grip on that cup. I couldn't rip it from him. He coveted the thing for the rest of the night, sipping little at a time and being careful not to spill. He treated it like a favorite pet. I wish I'd gotten video footage of it.

That's one not to forget.

BLT, Cheetohs, and Diet Coke

What better way to celebrate the anniversary of my mom's death? June 16th marked two years since Mom died. Just reading those words seems strange. Two years seems strange.

I made the decision last year to mark the day not only with some journal and alone time but also with what I am sure she would agree would have been her FAVORITE meal. Dad was visiting last year in Columbus on June 16th, so I shared the meal with him. And, as luck would have it, this year my dear friend from the 1st grade, Rachel Jacobs, was visiting so I shared the meal with her. Rachel had fond memories of my mom as well, so it was special to spend that day with her and eat that lunch with her.

Then I had to go and watch Grey's Anatomy that night (via NETFLIX - we're on Season 3), which was emotional not only because it was one of my mom's FAVORITE shows, but also because the episodes (that's right, I use plural - because we watched FOUR IN ONE NIGHT!) we viewed that night had a mother/daughter story in each. I was a little teary-eyed for sure.

I miss her so.

Pressure-free

Thankfully, I feel no guilt complex about letting my blog go unmanaged this spring. Of course, I have missed posting and especially sharing pictures for those out-of-towners who want to keep up. But the fact is that I've been so busy LIVING LIFE these past couple months, that I haven't had much space left to share about it.

And that's OK with me.

So, instead of rewinding and trying to play catch up (which can be overwhelming!), I'm starting now. Right now. Maybe you'll catch a few photos as I think to post them from what I let go... but I'm not gonna sweat it.

Below is a photo taken just a couple days ago of Sullivan and the 5 month-old version of Jackson. The black and white of Jackson is displayed on our wall and Scott thought to place it next to Sullivan for complarison's sake... don't they have a lot of similarities? The fact that Sullivan at 3 months is being compared to Jackson at 5 says a lot about my youngest child's porkiness.

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Love this PIC


Beach Bum GrandJan would love that grandbabies are following in footsteps!


Goldfish out of a hat - the PERFECT beach snack!








Whenever I spend time in Florida, I feel that Mom is there. She used to worship the beach and all the sounds, sights, and sensations that came with it. Some little 2-year-old (as of today, as a matter of fact!) is quite the beach bum as well. We just returned from a trip to celebrate Stacia, my cousin's, high school graduation (are you kidding me?! she's already 18?!) in Sarasota. More pics to come, but for now just enjoy the sweetness of Jackson's pale little body eating up EVERYTHING about the beach. (Writer's note: Rest assured ALL us Minnesotans were as ghostly and pasty as could be... and I'm keeping it that way with SPF 35 and SPF 50. I encourage you all to do the same!!! Who cares if strangers on the beach call you "Casper?")
[Sullivan stayed behind with GGmom since he is so "delicate" - as she puts it! He's a beach bum in the making, though!]