Wednesday, March 25, 2015

these two.

these little boys of ours would be lost without each other.
they are the best of buds.

day in:

and day out:

Saturday, March 21, 2015

thrilled to be FIVE!

our sweet chet turned 5 on march 17th.
and, my goodness, is that boy ever excited to be 5 (like his cousin, haden!)
chet has been counting down the sleeps until his birthday for weeks.
we made a special birthday calendar and he checked off a square each day.
every morning he would let me know how much longer it was until he would be 5.
and on his big day, when i went into the boys room, chet had a big grin on his face and he proudly announced that he was officially a 5 year old!

i can hardly believe it.
a whole lot has happened in the past 5 years, but it's still so hard to believe.

happy birthday chetty.
i hope being 5 is as magical as you think it will be!
i know this year will bring lots of big changes for you - i am both excited, and terrified!
you are a sweet, smart, goofy boy.
we love you to bits and are so grateful you are all ours. (obviously!)
(holden asked if i frosted the cake with cheese.. unfortunately, it does look a whole lot like cheese whiz! my bad.)

i did a birthday interview with chet where he answered questions about himself.
here are the answers:

what is your name? chet! C-H-E-T.

how old are you? 5. (with a really big, cheesy grin on his face)

what are you most excited about being 5?: getting presents. and going to school.
do i go to school today?

what was your favorite part of being 4? being little.

what can you do now that you are 5, that you couldn't do when you were 4? lift heavy things.

favorite color? orange.

favorite food? pickles.

favorite treat? popsicles.

what is the healthiest thing you like to eat? strawberries.

favorite show? paw patrol.

favorite animal? giraffe.
how come? because it's got the longest neck in the world.

favorite season (spring/summer/fall/winter)? christmas. 

favorite song? 'you are my sunshine' and 'jesus wants me for a sunbeam'.

favorite book? the one about ned the worm. (ned's new home)

what is your favorite thing to do outside? play at the park.

what is your favorite thing in your room? my bunkbed.

what do you want to be when you grow up? a pirate.
how come? because i want to get treasure.

who do you like to spend time with? grandma. and haden.

what is something that you are good at? playing with toys and doing puzzles.

what is something you want to be good at? play my ukulele.

what are you afraid of? ghosts and monsters.

what makes you laugh? tickling me.

what makes you happy? going to haden's house.

what makes you sad? holden hitting me.. really hard.

what is your favorite thing to do with dad? wrestle.

what is your favorite thing to do with mom? making cakes.

what is your favorite thing to do with holden? playing with toys and having sleepovers.

what is your least favorite thing to do? when people are being mean to me.

what are you most excited about starting school? playing with toys and eating snacks.

if you had a millions dollars, what would you do with it? buy toys. lots of toys.

we had his official birthday party on friday night. (march 13)
we booked our stake center for a bike themed birthday party.

this was the invite:

i think the invite suited his personality so well!

all the kids brought a bike, or a scooter, or a skateboard.
then we decorated those modes of transportation and rode them around the gym.
i pictured it being slightly less chaotic then it was, buuut we had 21 kids there so my hopes of more organization were a bit far fetched!
(chet has a whole pile of cousins - that's why there were so many kids there!)
oh well, the kids seemed to have fun.
and chet definitely felt special, so it was a success!
i have to give a big shout out to my parents for making the party so great.
not only did they make my vision come to life, but they also added their own creative touches and were the ultimate cleaner-uppers at the end, as per usual.
i plan on scheduling all our birthday parties for when they are here visiting ;)

unfortunately, i was super bad at taking pictures of the party (remember how i said it was a wee bit on the chaotic side?!) and i am sad that i don't have much proof that the party actually happened.
hopefully i will do a better job at the next party.

nevertheless, here are a couple not-great pictures:
(decorating bikes)
(we made a track around the gym with balloons. my parents made the carwash and hotdog stand - haha i wasn't planning on feeding anyone, even though the party was right during dinner!)
(this was the extent of my decorating..)
(and this is what the cakes looked like. i wanted them too look more 'pinteresty', but that just never happens. and chet was seriously so thrilled with the way they turned out, so that made up for their homemade-y appearance. and they tasted dee-lish!)
(we gave my grandpa the assignment of being the official car wash sprayer, and he took the assignment very seriously! the kids were soaked. and, when they retaliated, so was he! i am so happy that my grandpa could come. he has been spending a lot more time with our family lately and i love the relationship our boys have with him.)

on chet's actual birthday, we met up with his leavitt grandparents for a mcdonald's lunch.
grandma and grandpa did an excellent job of making chet feel special.
that is where we gave chet his presents from us and holden.
we got chet 2 gifts this year:

1. a bluejays baseball hat.
he lost his old one in the fall and has been asking for a new one ever since.
(we actually got one for holden too because he was such a good sport during the week of chet's festivities).

2. a scooter.
we took the scooter out of the packaging, assembled it, and wrapped it, from top to bottom, in wrapping paper.
i was kind of bummed that the wrapping paper made it super obvious what the gift was because then it wouldn't be much of a surprise for chet.
but apparently, even though the present was the exact shape of the scooter he had been asking for his birthday, chet did not catch on.
he was 97% certain we had got him a letter L for his present.
and he wasn't even the littlest bit disappointed by that thought!

pam: if we did get you a letter L, would you think that is a good birthday present?
chet: ya, i like the letter L. and that one looks super big!
pam:.... well, great.

luckily, chet was just as thrilled when it turned out that the letter L was a scooter.

he also got lots of fun things from his friends, cousins, and grandparents.
talk about spoiled!

although the celebrations were a lot of fun, i am grateful to be done.
..and very grateful that holden's birthday is a healthy distance away!

first spider intruder of the year.

i don't like spiders.

i have a pathetic amount of nightmares about spiders.

this is how i dealt with our first spider intruder of the year:
(those dorky books belong to my husband, by the way!.. my brave, spider-killing husband.)

we caught that dang spider at 10am, and the boys were given strict instructions to NOT touch the jar until dad got home (7 hours later).

i need our boys to learn to kill spiders for me.
but i also need them to learn that, although they don't need to fear spiders, they cannot play with them, keep them as pets, tease me with them, etc.
it's a fine line!

Wednesday, March 4, 2015


isn't that pretty cute?

our boys sleep together most of the time these days.
they are happy going to bed when they are going together, so matt and i are usually pretty accommodating to their sleepover requests.
plus, i love sneaking in and checking on them while they are asleep because they are always doing something cute.

Saturday, February 28, 2015

swimming lessons.

***before i officially start this post, i just want to say that this is my 500th post. holy smokes! when i started this bad boy, i never would've imagined i would write this many posts. but i did it! and, although a lot of what i write is pretty useless, i am excited to have it as a keepsake of these special years. so.. here is to 500 more!***

sportball ended last weekend.
it was a fun activity for the boys to be involved in.
each week they got to try playing a different sport.
soccer - football - tennis - golf - volleyball - baseball..

and, now that sportball is over, we have officially started our next activity.
swim lessons!
chet and holden (and me) are in swim lessons out at the okotoks swimming pool.
our first class was on wednesday, and it was a big success.
i was worried that 1 (or 2) of the boys would be nervous and it would complicate me getting them to their different classes at the exact same time.
but no one was nervous, and things went as smooth as ever.
infact, they didn't want to leave!
and the next morning, they woke up asking if that day was a swim lesson day too.

there were only 2 little problems.
(both of which were only problems for me.. my boys couldn't care less!)

problem number 1:
holden was approximately 4 times the size of everyone else in his class!
haha it was too funny.
while we were waiting for class to start, i saw all these moms coming in carrying babies in carseats and i was thinking to myself, "hmm i don't remember seeing a class offered for kids that small.. i must have missed it on the schedule."
well... i didn't.
those teeny tiny, squishy babies were actually there for the same class as holden - all 31 solid pounds of him!
oh well, holden and i rocked all the activities waaay better then the rest of the class.
(it helps when you can hold up your own head!)
and heck, it turned out to be an extra workout for me too.
 because it's a whole lot harder to toss a top-of-the-charts 2 year old in the air, then it is to toss a squishy 8 month old.
so we win.
(even though all the other moms are totally at home talking about my enormous child right now, dang it).
but, in my defense, holden is well within the age range for the class.
it's just a ridiculous age range is all: 6 months - 3 years.
the person who designed the class has obviously never had a kid!

problem number 2:
swimming pool locker rooms honestly make my stomach turn.
i can't handle them.
i want to hurl as i watch my boys carelessly walking through puddles of hairballs and toe lint.
i turn into such a mean person when i'm in those repulsively, skeevy things.
and i feel dirty for days after leaving them.

this past week has been crazy busy. so much to do.
i am thrilled it is the weekend!
it has been so nice to hang with my 3 favorite boys.
and - go figure - we spent our saturday afternoon swimming!

{this is the only picture i took of either of the boys at sportball.
chet is showing off his ribbon.}

Tuesday, February 17, 2015

family day.

yesterday, for family day, we drove out to bragg creek for a family 'adventure'.
we knew chet wouldn't be nearly as excited to go on a walk or a hike, so we strategically called it an adventure.
and it worked like a charm.

it was snowy and cold, but it was pretty.
and it was nice to be outside.
we walked in the trees and along the river.
i preferred being in the trees because it felt warmer, but all the boys liked being down by the river because they liked trying to break big chunks of ice off the riverbank and watch them float away.

Sunday, February 15, 2015

our valentines festivities.

on wednesday, we had a valentines party with all of chet's joy school friends (and a bunch of their siblings, including mr. holden).
the kids played games, made mailboxes, delivered valentines in said mailboxes, and ran around like a bunch of crazies.

on thursday, matt and i took the boys out on dates.
matt took holden to a toy store and out for frozen yogurt.
when he came home, you could tell he felt very special.
i took chet ice skating.
chet has been asking to go ice skating for months, and i have been procrastinating taking him because i knew it would be hard for him, and chet prefers when he is good at things!
but we went for it.
we drove to the indoor skating rink, paid to get in, paid to rent skates, tied up our nasty rental skates (oh man, i forgot how much work that is!), and headed to the ice... where it took of all 4 seconds for chet to end up laying flat on his back on the ice.
and then he wanted to go home.
but, i managed to convince him to give it a few more (dozen) tries before giving up.
it took us about an hour to do 3 laps around the rink - i guess that was to be expected with a mom who hasn't skated in years, a boy who has never skated, and the fact that we stopped for breaks at every penalty box and team bench!
i'm not sure if he will be asking to go skating again anytime soon, but he still enjoyed being on a date.
i loved spending time with him too, and that it gave me a chance to talk to him about how you have to practice things to get good at them - because everyone sucks at skating their first time (don't worry, i chose more toddler-friendly words), but the people that don't give up, and practice often, are the ones who excel.

on friday, matt and i went on a date.
we had accumulated a few gift cards to the keg, and were excited to use those.
but then when we got to the restaurant, we were told it was a 75 minute wait!
we waited it out - and the tasty dinner was worth the wait.
plus, we went shopping while we waited and i got new running shoes!
it was a fun night. but that's not especially shocking - i love going on dates with that boy.

on saturday, we made valentines crafts and decorated grandma maralyn's door with them.
and we spent some time hanging with grandpa larry.

i am such a lucky girl to have 3 handsome boys in my life. i love them to bits.
... and that this winter has been somewhat kind to me.
our boys were puddle jumping again this weekend!

Tuesday, February 10, 2015


matt and i were in the student phase of life for several years of our marriage.
so it felt like we never really had any outstanding financial goals - other then the obvious 'stay out of student debt' one.
now that we are out in the real world, and making money, we have set financial goals that are exciting to try to achieve.
especially for goal-oriented me.

i have never really struggled with paying tithing.
i grew up watching my parents faithfully pay tithing, and have never had a hard time following their example.
but a while back, i had forgotten to pay ours for longer then usual, and it kinda hurt to pay it.
not to the point that i thought not to, but just to the point that it made me stop and think about what i was doing.
i paid it.
i knew doing so would be a blessing, but was not expecting anything especially notable to happen.
and then almost instantly i saw a blessing that was undeniably because of keeping that commandment.
there was no question. it was crazy.
i knew, without a doubt, my Heavenly Father was showing me that i don't need to worry - He's got it all under control.

since that experience, i have felt differently when i hand in that little envelope.
and it has been easy to see blessing after blessing that i know are a result of being obedient.
i am grateful for a Heavenly Father who loves and watches over me.
and who blesses our family with so much.

speaking of money, i picked up a new little job at the start of the year.
i am now:
1. (and most importantly) a wife & mom extraordinaire.
2. a part time receptionist at an orthodontic office.
3. the official cook for the calgary mission home :)

haha cooking is not something i love, or am particularly good at, but i applied for the job and got it.
so every few weeks, i am in charge of making a meal for groups of missionaries, ranging from 10-50.
sometimes they are for missionaries arriving to the mission, sometimes for those leaving, and sometimes for a zone conference.
i think it will be a good opportunity for me learn new skills, and i also think it is good for chet and holden.
i take them along with me so they get to be my helpers and spend time around missionaries.

this week, they even looked like little missionaries.
pretty cute ones, i might add :)

although i can't stand the thought of my boys leaving me one day to serve a mission, i am so grateful for missions and missionaries.
i am grateful for the mission that matt served, and the person he is as a result of it.
 (even if it was - hands down - the event in my life that was the cause of more tears then any other!)
and i am also grateful for the missionaries that found my family 21 years ago, so that i can be a member of the church of Jesus Christ of latter day saints today.

Thursday, February 5, 2015

little tent.

chet and holden played in this tent for hours this afternoon.
literally, in the tent for hours.
and, in case you can't tell from the picture, it's a small tent! haha
my favorite part was listening to their conversation.
they always interact with each other differently when they think i can't hear - in a good way.
and, little did they know, i could hear everything!

Saturday, January 31, 2015

growing up.

chet was at a birthday party this afternoon, and matt went to his office to prepare a lesson, so it was just holden and i for a couple hours.
we went to target (because i want to soak in every last moment i can in that beauty of a store before it leaves canada forever).
and then we went on a date.
to tim horton's.
we ordered 2 donuts with sprinkles. and a diet coke.
we talked a bit about donuts, how crunchy sprinkles are, and about penguins.
but, other then that, we just sat quietly - holden eating his donut and me watching him.
and honestly, he. is. so. cute.
i know i am his mom, but i just can't get over how sweet his little face is.
i love watching him. i love his mannerisms. i love his gremlin voice.
he has grown into such a lovely little guy.
he has such a nice personality. he is such a happy boy.
he is smiley, he has the patience to figure things out on his own, he is coordinated - at everything from throwing a ball to building with tiny little lego pieces, he is great at sharing with his brother (who sucks at sharing), and he is always up for a good, long hug.
oh, and like every other 2 year old on the planet, he knows how to be a little terd at times too.

as for chet, he is a sweet boy too. and very handsome, as well.
and he is less then 7 weeks from his 5th birthday.
i am freaking out!
i feel like once he turns 5 he won't be a little boy anymore - he will be a full fledged boy.
and i'm just not sure i'm ready for that.
i start doubting myself: have i done a good enough job raising him so far?
now that he is going to be 5, and heading off to school, he is going to be so much more influenced by others.
have i set an example of all the traits i want him to have - kindness, honesty, patience, hard work, faith, etc?
have i set a good enough example of those things that they will naturally be the way he acts, when faced with tricky situations at school?
i hope so.
because, if not, what have i been doing all these years?!
lucky for us, chet is a a very good boy at heart.

i have been working on getting chet registered for kindergarten lately.
we live in a new neighborhood, where schools haven't been built yet, so his designated school is a pretty long bus ride away.
and i don't really like that. so we have been creative with our school registration.
we are on a few lists now - including one at a french immersion school! - and will have to wait and see what happens over the next several months.
chet is so excited for school, so i probably shouldn't be stressing.
no matter what school he goes to, he is gonna love it!