Wednesday, October 22, 2014


i wasn't very good at documenting thanksgiving this year.
we did lots of good stuff, but apparently i wasn't in the mood to take pictures of it.
the only one i took was of these dorky little turkey treats the boys and i made:
they didn't turn out quite like the picture on pinterest, but nothing ever does.
..including the halloween costumes i am currently working on!

despite the lack of pictures, i definitely have lots to be thankful for these days - most of all for my family.
i love 'em to bits.

Monday, October 13, 2014

best friends.

haha they might be getting a bit big for that!

i honestly can't get over how well chet and holden play together these days.
there is no doubt.. they are best friends.
it makes matt and i so happy to see those 2 playing together, helping each other, sticking up for each other, and even getting into mischief together.

holden speaks pretty darn well for a 2 year old.
but there are times when i just can't figure out what he is asking for.
and then, from across the room (and in a tone of voice that implies that i should be embarrassed for not understanding) chet will translate for me.
he always knows exactly what his messy little brother is saying.
and he is always holden's advocate when he is in trouble.
chet is a good big brother. a good helper. and - for the most part - a good example.
and that makes us especially happy because holden will do just about anything his big brother does.
he follows chet everywhere.
chet is lucky to have such an adoring little friend.
holden is always willing to share toys with chet, laugh at chet's lame jokes, and accompany him on a scary trip into a dark part of the house.

chet and holden like to play with lego and train sets, go on family bike rides, play at parks, and wrestle with dad.
chet loooves lobsters (for some odd reason). he was thrilled to try this on at target.
i told holden we were going to pick up chet from joyschool, so he grabbed his backpack for the ride.
chet and matt had a campout in grandpa leavitt's backyard, with haden and uncle todd.

chetty's first talk.

chet gave his first talk in primary last sunday.
it was too cute.
matt and i could not get over how brave chet was.

if you would like to watch the 2 minute talk, you can click here.
or, you can save yourself some time, and just read his talk here:

In the Book of Mormon, Nephi said, “And it came to pass that we lived after the manner of happiness.”

This means that when Nephi and his family obeyed the commandments Heavenly Father gave them, they were blessed to be happy.

Some of the commandments Heavenly Father has given my family are:

- Pray.
- Read the scriptures.
- Be kind to others.
- Have family home evening.
- Go to church.
- Take care of our bodies.

I know that when my family and I obey the commandments, we will be blessed with happiness too.

I want to obey the commandments because I love my family, I love my Heavenly Father, and I love being happy!

Saturday, October 4, 2014

my best half marathon yet!

i ran the harvest half marathon this morning, here in calgary.
it was such a fun race!
the last organized half marathon i did was almost 2 whole years ago - just after holden was born.
i had forgotten what a thrill an organized race like that is.

the mornings here have been pretty chilly lately, so i was worried this morning would be the same.
i don't like running when it is too cold.
 ... or too hot, or too dark, or too windy ...
good thing i have a treadmill, huh?
while waiting for the race to start, i was shivering like mad.
i literally could not get by body to stop shaking!
but, once i got running, i warmed up pretty quick and it turned into a perfect running day.
the sun was out and there was a nice fall breeze.

most of the run took place in fish creek park.
and, for those of you who don't know calgary, i must tell you that fish creek park is so lovely in the fall!
all the fall colors were the perfect distraction while i ran.

the best part of this half marathon was that i ran it in my best time yet!
i finished in 1:43:17
that placed me 94th out of 950 runners.
and 3rd place out of 119 in my age group (girls 20-29).
i was pretty pleased with that :)

another best part of the run was that my family surprised me by showing up at the end.
i had told matt and my parents not to come, because it didn't seem worth the effort.
but when i reached the last mile marker, my parents were there rooting me on!
and when i crossed the finish line, matt was there with the boys!
(which was super impressive, seeing as how our boys aren't early risers).
it was such a nice surprise to have some cheerleaders.

if you didn't already know, i. love. running.
i honestly crave it.
is that weird?
maybe. but it's true.
it's how i start every day - i wake up before my family, head down to my treadmill, turn on my music, and just. run.
i have that time all to myself. and it makes me happy.
i am sooOOOoo grateful for a strong, healthy body that let's me do all the things i love.
and i make sure to thank my heavenly father for that every day.

this is a blurry picture of me waving to my mom at the last mile marker:
and here is a screenshot of the top chunk of runners in my age group. see my name in 3rd place?!

Tuesday, September 30, 2014


we drove out to drumheller on saturday.
it took us about 1.5 hours to get there.

what is in drumheller, you ask?
well... not much.
it's definitely one of the tackier towns we have been to!
why so tacky?
well, the one thing that drumheller does have going for it is that it is home to a dinosaur museum - the royal tyrell museum.
and, to be honest, the museum is super great. very well done. very kid friendly.
chet's reaction when we walked in was, 'WOW!'
there were lots of neat things to see, and read, and touch.
i thoroughly enjoyed our time there.

but unfortunately, because of this really great tourist attraction, the town is 110% dedicated to dinosaurs.
the streets have dinosaur names, the stores all sell dinosaur souvenirs, there are pictures of dinosaurs on every other light post, colorful dinosaur statues at every intersection, and the world's tallest dinosaur in the center of the city.
i felt kinda bad for all the normal people in town who recognize how obnoxious it all is.

but, tackiness aside, we had such a great day trip.
the landscape around drumheller is very unique.
and, thanks to alberta culture days, we didn't have to pay for admission to the museum. score!
instead, we let our boys choose out one of those dinosaur souveniers to bring home.
holden picked a t-rex and chet picked a longneck - which we thought was actually pretty fitting.
chet named his dinosaur pickles, because it is green. and chet loves to eat pickles.
we helped holden name his dinosaur rex, because it is a t-rex...
(we are super creative like that.)

i have always had a hard time understanding where dinosaurs fit in the the grand scheme of things, and have been tempted to just believe they never really did.
they just seem so fantastical.
but after walking through the tyrell museum, and seeing the irrefutable evidence that dinosaurs did indeed exist at some point, i guess i have to believe it.
although, it's still a pretty crazy thought!

(the lighting in the museum made it impossible to take a good picture)
(i take way too many pictures of our kids sleeping in the car..)

Friday, September 26, 2014


i love my little nerds.
(how did that picture turn out so awkward?!)

i love my big nerd too.
matt bought this cake for himself, and brought it home to share.
which means he was the one to ask the workers at marble slab to write 'matt's cake' on it!

Sunday, September 21, 2014

summer is back!

calgary is bipolar.
we had boots and sandals lined up beside each other last week.
i feel like shoes and sandals is an acceptable combination.
or shoes and boots.
but boots and sandals seems a wee bit extreme.
but, then again, who am i to say?

all i know is i am grateful the snow didn't stick around long.
we have been outside a lot this past week, soaking up every last bit of summer we will get.

the boys also started gymnastics this week.
it went so well! .. despite the fact that i showed up to the wrong location.
back in high school, i had friends that went to this gym and i just assumed it was still in the same place.
but apparently they changed locations... 10 years ago!
we made it to the right location a couple minutes late (which is actually pretty typical for me) and the boys had a great time.
i am with holden in a mom & tot class, and chet is in a class with 5 other kids his age at the same time. the timing is perfect.
i think it will be great to have gymnastics to look forward to each week through the fall/winter.

new calling.

matt got a new calling last week. he is now the YM president in our ward.
we both looove working with the youth.
so he is definitely excited.. and definitely nervous.
i think he will be super great in there.
it might be a bit tricky because i am in the YW presidency, but we know it can work.
our first official activity together was a youth temple trip on thursday night.

Friday, September 12, 2014

joy school.

this happened yesterday:

yep. that is holden, running through a freshly melted snow puddle.
no shoes.
or pants, for that matter.
we are classy like that.

wanna know something else classy about us?
we have pet salamanders.
2 of them.
they don't have names. we aren't even sure what gender they are.
matt found them in a hole by his work and brought them home.
i pictured us keeping them in a bucket for a couple days, maybe.
but, one thing lead to another, and now we have a terrarium.
and we go buy crickets from the pet store to feed our new pets.
i can't say i am a huge fan of having something slithery in our home, but chet and holden think they are pretty neat.
and they think matt is especially neat for bringing them home.
such a cool dad!

other news:

chet started joy school this week.
we decided against doing an official preschool, once and for all.
i was stressing out about the decision all summer, and i'm not really sure why!
as long as we are helping him grow and experience new things, he will be just fine when he starts kindergarten next year.
on mondays chet goes to a music class.
on tuesdays we all like to go to storytime at the public library.
on wednesdays chet has joy school.
and on thursdays both of our boys are in gymnastics.
plus, we have our science center pass. and they go to primary on sundays.
so we will be busy this fall/winter!
we feel very blessed to be able to give our boys such fun opportunities to learn and grow.

for joy school, chet is in a class with 5 other kids.
2 boys, 4 girls. chet is the oldest.
all the kids are from our ward.
each mom takes a turn hosting 'school' at her house, which means every 6 weeks i'm in charge.
i have heard other moms say that joy schools can be a pain in the butt, but it sounds like a pretty great deal to me.
we have a set curriculum, so there is definitely structure. but it is mostly just supposed to be a fun learning experience for the kids.
and, based on chet's excitement about his first class, i think it will be just that!

while chet was at his joy school this week, holden and i went out and ran errands.
i had the years before holden came along to run errands alone with chet, and i loved those times.
chet was a cute shopping buddy.
but, like many other things that second children get scammed with, holden hasn't had the chance to be my solo shopping buddy very often.
and for some reason, when the three of us go shopping together, his best traits never seem to shine through! 
it was really fun to spend that time alone with him.
he was excited, helpful, and it was obvious that he felt special.
he is a nice boy. and he is growing up oh, so fast.
his vocabulary is improving every day.
i feel like we can have full on conversations with him now.
his prayers are to die for.
and one of his most adorable phrases is 'oh man!'.
he says it when he makes a mistake. it's precious.

Thursday, September 11, 2014

get me out of here!

it has been snowing here in calgary for the past couple days.
it's september. it's not supposed to be snowing!
and certainly not the kind of snow that piles up.
i would have been sad if it had snowed that kind of snow that melts when it hits the ground, because any kind of snow in september is disheartening.
but that's not the kind of snow we have been getting.
we have several inches of wet, heavy snow piled up.
power is out, schools are closed, and a good chunk of the trees in the city have been damaged by the weight the wet snow.
it is devastating.
tears have definitely been shed.
(at least by me!)
and i am even more committed to getting our family out of here.
the farther south the better.
and the sooner the better!

global warming? puh-lease.

we had to leave the house yesterday to take chet to his first day of joy-school, otherwise i probably would have hid inside all day.
but i figured since we were out, and all bundled up, i would document the nastiness.
we drove to a farm field not far from where we live and snapped a couple pictures.
holden cried the entire time. he just kept saying, 'cold. cold. cold.'
chet was slightly more enthused at the start, but ended up sobbing too.
they must be mine :)

thank goodness we harvested our vegetable garden on labor day, otherwise our summer project would be ruined!