Showing posts from September, 2014

Lake Michigan

We left on Thursday night and drove all night to Holland, Michigan. On Friday, we took a short nap and then spent the day helping Tim and Nicole with wedding prep (or maybe we all stood around and watched Tim draw/paint).

On Saturday, we slept in (!!!) and ran some more last minute errands for the wedding. But we made sure to sneak in a trip to Lake Michigan at Holland State Park.


our tearful night owl

Anna woke up crying a few nights last week. So while sleeping on the floor with a tearful toddler isn't always on the top of one's bucket list, these sweet moments help to make it totally worth it.

wedding bells

We are celebrating the nuptials of Tim and Nicole this weekend! I cannot find the photo of the four of us at a wedding last October (besides these silly ones) despite my best efforts. (It was taken on Tim's phone; I know he sent it to me, but I cannot find it anywhere.) (Note to self: remember to take a photo with Tim and Nicole and not lose it.) So instead, here they are hanging out with our girls in May.

We are so excited for you! See you soon!!!!!

song: Jenny and Tyler: In Everything You Do

Singers and songwriters, Jenny and Tyler, wrote this song, In Everything You Do, for their daughter. I posted the lyrics below, and here is a lyric video if you wish to hear the song. It's a beautiful song. I think it's quite difficult to capture the joys and aches of parenting in so many words, but I think this song somehow does just that.

I wish that I could keep you from pain But like a storm, pain will form But I’ll teach you how to face it To be weak, yet strong in grace
I wish that I could keep you from fear But like the night, fear will rise So I’ll hold till love suffices To drive far the dark devices and behold
A world that’s full of wonder Full of laughter, full of life A world that pulls you under With the turning of the tide In everything you do a choice of life or death to choose And we will try to show you love
I wish that I could keep you from doubt But like the waves, doubt will rage So I’ll sail with you through troubled seas Until we find a gentler breeze and behold
A world so …


These two have so much fun together.

This cutie flip flops between laughing with them and wandering off by herself.

It's so interesting to see their interactions with one another and also how the dynamics differ when one sister is missing. It will be fascinating to see how Jesse fits into the mix as he becomes more vocal and mobile. For now, he does a lot of observing - and occasional singing - from the bouncy seat (which hopefully lasts a few more months before it sighs to the ground from its inhabitant exceeding the weight limit).

a-to-z alphabet zoo play

We received the A-to-Z alphabet zoo for Christmas back in 2011, and it's still a regular part of our daily play almost three years later.

Anna's also at the age of loving to put things in and out. So sometimes she's quite phenomenal at cleaning up.

Jesse can't quite play with the animals yet, but soon enough I am sure he'll be gnawing on a jaguar.

green beans . . . and flowers

guest bloggers: Lydia, Heidi, & Anna

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Big Guy and Nonna went to New York to meet our newest cousin, so we had to pick up their CSA on Friday, which involved picking green beans. We love green beans, so we were happy to help.

They also have u-pick flowers which we have done often this summer (especially to bring bouquets along on all our hospital visits to appendectomy patients).

Maybe next year, we'll have green beans to pick in our garden (if we can figure out how to keep the deer away from them).

baby girls

Back in April, I mentioned there'd be five more babies on my mom's side of the family by the end of October. I don't know if I ever mentioned there'd also be four more babies from my dad's side of the family - including the two baby overlap to both sides (our baby and my brother's baby). In July, Jesse started the baby bonanza. But since him, it's been all girls, with the first two weeks in September being especially busy:

July 20: Zaelynn (to my cousin, Nicole (mom's side))
September 1: Geneva (to my cousin, Jared (dad's side))
September 2: Evrin (to my cousin, Brittany (dad's side))
September 8: Joelle (to my cousin, Drew (mom's side))
September 13: Selah (to my brother, Ryan)
There's one more girl due to my cousin, Adam (mom's side), by the end of October.

My newest niece, Selah, lives in Rochester, New York. So while we haven't snuggled her in person yet, we met her via FaceTime. She's much cuter not blurry, and I&#…

until it happens: baby pool results

Yipes - I forgot to post the baby poolresults.

So, the scoring on this website was interesting. Guesses only lost ten points per wrong day but 1/4 point for every minute wrong. So with a wrong day guess but the correct time, it'd beat out someone with the correct day but the wrong time. And that just seems silly to me. But, I don't make the rules. (Or do I?) =)

The stats for Jesse: a boy on July 1st 3:54pm, 9#12oz, 22 inches.

My mom guessed a boy on July 1st, 4:15am 9#6oz, 20.6 inches. She got the correct gender on the correct date and was only off by 12 hours, 6 ounces and a 1.4 inches. But according to their scoring, she placed sixth.

Nicole guessed a boy on June 29th, 3:30pm, 8#6oz, 21.5 inches. She got the correct gender on the wrong date (by two days!), but her time was only off by 24 minutes. (Though, technically, wasn't her time off by 2,904 minutes - over two whole days worth of minutes?) But based on their scoring, she won.

I conclude their point system in relatio…

granola bars

I have discovered a recipe for granola bars that I am loving: No-Bake Healthy Granola Bites over at Mel's Kitchen Cafe. I've made them three (maybe four?) times in the past month, so if I haven't already emailed you this recipe, I'm linking to it here for you. This one is especially perfect for anyone with peanut allergies as you can easily switch out the peanut butter for sun butter. I've made them with normal JIF or natural peanut butter and honey or agave nectar. Either works! (Though I think I backed off on the amount of honey/agave nectar: just 1/2 cup instead of 2/3 cup.) The creator of this recipe, Mel, makes them into balls, but I prefer the bars. Though her picture of granola bites is quite beautiful; don't you think?

[Image from Mel's Kitchen Cafe]
They're delicious. As for the bars, I just press them into a parchment paper-lined baking dish and stick them in the freezer. Then I slice them into bars and stack them in a tupperware to keep in th…


Now that our piano is tuned, this happens multiple times a day.

I hope you can almost hear their singing by looking at their faces in these pictures.

s'mores: Anna's first and summer's last

On Friday, we built a fire to enjoy some end of the season s'mores.

Actually, this was Anna's first s'more as she's been asleep prior to all of our other fires this summer. So I had to capture the moment. (Please excuse my poor angles. I was feeding Jesse while taking this photo.)

She definitely enjoyed it. =)

second breakfast

We are kind of like hobbits around here, eating second breakfast every day.


I guess it's time to get up.


Naming one's offspring is no simple task, but perhaps Aaron and I should have skipped all of our long brainstorming sessions and google searches and turned instead to our family trees. Because, apparently, the names of our children are already on those family trees.

After Lydia was born, Aaron's mom showed us a picture of her grandmother, Lydia Rosenberger.

We intentionally chose Heidi's middle name, Eva, after her Great-Great-Grammy, Eva Moyer.

(And here is baby Eva.)

After Anna was born, my Pop-Pop sent me an email with a picture of his grandmother, Anna Nash. (She's the lady in the bathing suit. (Yes, those are bathing suits.) The child is my Pop-Pop's mother.)

After Jesse was born, my Pop-Pop told me Jesse was the middle name of his grandfather, Moses Jesse Coyle. (I don't have a picture of him. (Aunt Rhoda, do you have one?))

How hilarious and ridiculous is it that we chose the first names for Lydia, Anna, and Jesse after one of their great-great-(great-)g…

zoo with friends

guest bloggers: Lydia, Heidi, & Anna

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We went to the zoo yesterday with some of our favorites!

We climbed statues and saw animals with Hazel and Louisa while our moms tried to keep up.


Yesterday was Uncle Jon's birthday where we played a thrilling game of duck-duck-goose! (And I forgot my camera, so these photos from my phone will have to suffice.)

Happy Birthday, Uncle Jon!