Monday, September 27, 2010

the parents formally known as annie and ben

am i sure these people exist anymore? most days, weeks, hardly. life gets so caught up in new words and phrases and is marked by milestones like rolling over and learning how to kick a soccer ball. in an attempt to get back to "normal," ben and i have commenced date night. now, this isn't the typical free-of-children date night, but rather, go out for dinner, get out of the house, no cleaning up the kitchen or loading the dishwasher for a night. it started a month ago, and we've managed to continue to get out every thursday. the first night, went by freakishly smooth. the second week, not as great but still a success. and well last week, pretty rough. so this thursday, i'm expecting us to get 86'd from whatever restaurant we choose. perhaps we should pick one we don't like so much.

ben has been fairly busy with work this past month. he worked a nice 40-50 hours monday through friday through the middle of july and then went to working saturdays. just this past week, we had a pretty nice windstorm come through the valley, leaving hundreds without power. ben went to work on saturday night around 9:30 and didn't return home until sunday night at 10. when i talked to him sunday around 2, he estimated they got 500 people's power back on, so who knows how many more they got in the last 8 hours of work. it's incredible the work he does, and how he truly cares about the people without this luxury we so take for granted. he's likely to pick up sundays at some point soon; as the weather gets cooler, there's always this push to get as much done as possible before the snow flies.

he went on 3 different excursions for sheep and came up empty-handed on all. the sheep is always a bonus for ben as being up in the mountains and pushing himself to such extremes are really what he craves. (although, i'm sure he craves tender sheep steaks too!) he said there were many, many almost legals so that just means that when i go with him next august, i should have my pick. at least, that's the hope! here are a few shots from his outings. they first went to where the chugach and wrangells meet and then later, to the talkeetna range.

i manage to stay entirely too busy with raising children, but that's what this time in my life is all about. i love being at home with them and would not have it any other way. being at home has allowed me to do all the things that i was always too busy to take on when i was working and going to school. i still scrapbook, but i have discovered a lovely new site (thanks, momma!) called mypublisher. if you have ever wanted to scrapbook but just can't find the time to do it, or don't feel like you have that creative gene, this site is so easy, fast and fun. (no, i am not getting kick backs from them by this slight advertisement.) there are several selections for your own special book; 3 different cover options, colors galore, fun styles for your page layouts and even different sized books. and if you're like me and always looking for your next big deal, this site is continuously sending out coupons for: buy one get one free, a percentage off or even sign up a friend and get a free book. i dare you to check it out.

i am still pushing on with the kiddo's scrapbooks. as much as i would like to just bail on them and start one on my new favorite site, jack's is close to being wrapped up. i've always done his from [birth]day to halloween of the following year. i'm caught up through july so it's time to print some pictures and slap those cute faces onto some fun paper! i have dylan's up to date as of last week. i feel an enormous amount of pressure to not only complete her album but to do it with stickers and sayings and all the other goodies that make up jack's first book. i'm sure the boy of this family is going to care less about all the time and effort his dear mother put into his book, but you gotta believe the girl will! and, with my anticipation of not being able to live up to jackie's first book, i've also completed a pregnancy journal for dylan and continued with written monthly updates in another book. so, my hope is that's enough to please her in the years to come.

all sewing has been put on the back burner. that seems to be what happens with most projects i pick up. i'm all-about it for weeks, months and then just as fast as i got into it, i move onto something else. but you know, just thinking about sewing is kinda making me want to break out my pinning needles, ironing board and rush down to joann's!

i've been working on getting the outside of the house cleaned up for winter. thanks to the windstorm last week, there isn't a single leaf for me to rake. joy. i do need to climb up that ladder though and clean out the gutters. that's always a super neat job... i put away the sprinklers and hoses and have slowly been packing in the lawn chairs and soon, my front porch rockers. the flowers have all wrinkled away to crumbly, brown puffs so i guess the planters will need to come in as well. this middle season business is always a challenge. we don't quite get the long, rambling autumn that the states are blessed with. but often times, the snow can arrive and blanket our scenery; just thinking about snowflakes makes me smile. and i have to say, knowing that our hawai'i trip is just around the corner, i'm ok with winter arriving.

i turn 30 in just over a month, and you know what? i'm excited. but, that's all i have to say about that.

this blog about us was ben's idea. it was actually more of a challenge. i bet you can't not blog about the kids. and you know what? i couldn't. they are everywhere in our lives, and i love it that way. i can't even find pictures of just me because naturally, one of them is in my arms. and, i'm so wishing that's where one would be right now.

and coming soon, a house project update...

the lost ones

i just came across a cd of pictures that my mother had sent me. (like, from 5 months ago!) i was straightening up my night stand and in between some books, fell out this cd. to my surprise, these were all new pictures to me! i can't recall ever looking at these pictures so what a nice surprise on this rather drab monday.

can you believe dylan june is approaching half a year already? that's right. 6 months of our lives have just zipped by! studying these pictures, i was not aware that i had given birth to such a jaundiced babe. my goodness; she was about as orange as her hair! and how skinny! it's truly amazing how much they change in such a short amount of time. from eating and sleeping only to rolling over, arching, inching, squirming... this child is ready to MOVE. she's a great sleeper, moved passed the whole witching hour/colic episodes, laughs at her brother, sucks her thumbs and toes equally and adores any cuddly blankie. she's still working on a fabulous bald spot, pretty sure her belly button is an innie and man, she loves those vibrating teething toys.

these pictures just make me smile. jack holding her for the first time, all our family holding her for the first time, what a blessing to have so many people rush out to see our precious little girl. everybody's faces all have the same theme: elation. love.

the pictures begin the very next morning, a mere twelve hours after she arrived and go through her first week. and if you're wondering what jackie is doing in the first few pictures, he went through this stage of wanting to give everyone a boop! on the nose. so naturally, dylan got her first boop! that morning. the torture starts immediately, i tell you what.

Sunday, September 19, 2010

an afternoon in willow

benji and jack headed up to willow this morning to help uncle bob fall some trees at his cabin. being that it's man's work, dylan and i took our sweet time getting ready and arrived just after noon.

i arrived to find my son with a dirt smattering across his face, sticky hands, smelling of autumn and full of smooches and hugs. what a joy. he showed me all the fallen trees, the stumps, dada in the equipment; needless to say, the kid was excited.

the flanagan's "yard" is now very open, but the cabin is still secluded by trees. where in the past, you would have to wander to the road to get full-on sun, now it's spilling in overhead.

and, somebody even had their first poo poo in the outhouse at the cabin! i won't name names, but i'm sure you can venture to guess. dylan took a 20 minute snooze on callie's bed. jack ate handfuls of chips and yogurt covered pretzels in between sitting with dada on the mini. all in all, it was a great little sunday. any time with family is, right?

oh, and how spectacular is mckinley???