Learning to ski!

Jared took Grey skiing for the first time this week. I hate not being able to go to everything--but grateful for pictures so I can be a proud momma. Jared used a harness to help him down the mountain and Grey was ready by the end of the day to go all by himself. He absolutely loved it and cannot wait to go again.
On the chairlift with Jared

So excited to get going!

Warming up in the lodge with lunch and hot chocolate

I am not going to lie... I did not leave the condo from Monday afternoon until Wednesday night when we came home. It was wonderfully lazy after a crazy month!

There was a lot of this


and this

Merry Christmas!

Feeling a little sad that the Christmas season is over. It is my favorite time of year. But I have been itching to get the tree down and everything cleaned up and organized. Anyone else go into crazy-trash bag mode? I start throwing things out like crazy!

This Christmas I hosted my very first holiday dinner and felt so very adult. Although it was hectic and we ended up having the missionaries join us at the last minute. Someday I will have a large dining room, loads and loads of matching dinnerware and space to really host a fancy dinner. In the meantime we made it work! It was really awesome to have my family and Jared's mom (his dad was sick) over to our home.

I woke up at 7 listening to Grey peeking through the stockings. Cute little guy didn't even notice the extra presents under the tree. I came out and he thought he was in trouble for peeking. I told him it was okay and that he could open it. And he started jumping around laughing saying, "Look mom, I got a new toothbrush!!!" It made me smile that he was so excited and grateful for a little toothbrush. Then he grabbed his two presents that had been under the tree previously and he was ready to open his TWO presents. He was so excited thinking that he got two presents. How do I keep that attitude going through the years? He really is such a sweetheart. I learn so much from these sweet kids. I am grateful for them constantly!

We had a wonderful morning with our little family gifts and our traditional cinnamon rolls. I absolutely loved having Christmas on Sunday this year. It was perfect in the midst of the busy festivities to stop and focus on our Savior. My mom, stepdad, brother and girlfriend came to church with us making it even more special. If only my little sister could have been here...

Elise was not very interested in opening presents after the stockings. Especially after she found her Cinderella pez. She just kept stuffing her face with whatever treats she could find.

Cole had a nice haul too-thanks to all our family! He only got one present from us--and it is really more for my convenience.

Opening the gifts from Grandma Laura & Grandpa Dave

Elise loving on her Uncle Bryan

Twas the Night Before Christmas...

Our Christmas Eve began with a nice 2-hour workout and a long steam afterwards. Perfect preparation for the massive amounts of food to come later that evening. We spent the evening at my dad's house and had a delicious dinner of ham and roast!
Isabella loved holding Cole

Lauren, Isabella, Grey, Cole and Elise

Grey was so excited to open presents!

 Elise's reaction to the princess barbie dolls was PRICELESS.
She was jumping up and down and squealing.

Greyden & his Aunt Isabella
They have so much fun together!


With all the snow in the last few weeks, we have gotten in quite a bit of sledding. Although most times I have to stay home with Cole while Jared walks the other two down the street to the sledding hill. The last time I bundled up Cole, handed him off to Jared and did some sweet sledding myself! So much fun!!!
Grey & Elise

 Grey with Noah--one of his sledding buddies

Daddy & Elise 

Grey & his buddy Jared love to go down the hill together

And the video of Grey & Jared going over the bump they built


Snowflakes falling...

Today is THE best day!

Waking up to a foot of snow

Jared making good use of his new snowblower
up & down the entire block

Making snow angels with these bundled up cuties

Warming up with hot chocolate

Reading Christmas books

Watching The Grinch

Coming soon:



Possibly getting out of our PJs



Grey is the sweetest big brother. I am starting the think the third child has it the best. Cole is so spoiled with love constantly.

Christmas Parties

I am still recovering from this past weekend's Christmas celebrations. I absolutely LOVE this time of year and love the parties and celebrations, but I do get a little worn out.

Friday we had a Christmas celebration at the gym where I work. So I went to help set up and the kids got to see Santa, make crafts and decorate cookies. They were pretty excited to see Santa.
Later that afternoon was Grey's preschool party which I am in charge of being the room mom. It was a lot of fun, but I am glad that one was over. No one really wanted to help besides buying things--so I was pretty much on my own. We decorated sugar cookies, cut out paper snowflakes, decorated popsicle stick snowflakes and made snowmen out of marshmallows. The crafts were a hit with the kids--luckily. I didn't take any pictures except of one of the crafts...

Saturday morning was our Ward Christmas Party. PJ's and breakfast with Santa. The kids wore their matching PJ's with their cousins.

Sunday we went to the annual Caroling party at Jared's parents. It was amazing as always.

Happy, happy birthday Jared dear...

Poor Jared with his December birthday. I feel bad every year that we squeeze it in quickly amidst all the holiday celebrations.
The night before his birthday, Jared let the dogs out front to go to the bathroom like we have done EVERY. single. night for the past 9 years! And Porter took off and never came back. If any of you know Jared, you know that it was like losing a child for him. All night long we searched in ditches, yards, drove around the neighborhood. We woke up every hour and checked on the porch hoping he made it back. When Jared woke up on his birthday, we both were pretty heartbroken and figured he was gone. Jared was getting ready to go look for him again when I hear him say, "There's Porter!" Apparently our neighbor two houses down found him and brought him inside for the night. She had taken him running at the park off leash and he was just following her right back to her house without even looking at our house. So much for loyalties! Jared started calling to him after he ran past and he couldn't decide if he wanted to come home with us or with our neighbor. He must have gotten pretty spoiled over there...

So luckily his day turned out well! The kids & I made him a candy poster along with his gifts. Jared & I had a wonderful date with sushi at Sonoda's downtown and wandering the Tattered Cover. That was our first ALONE date for months. I finally got that sweet baby boy to take a bottle!
We just loved to be able to talk without interruptions, hold hands and really enjoy our time together. When we got home we sang "Happy Birthday" and had cake with the kids. Grey was pretty upset when I told him Jared wasn't having a birthday party, so we had to make sure to celebrate a little with the kids.

Happy Birthday Lover...


Gingerbread Houses

This is one of my favorite Christmas traditions--mostly because I love eating all the candy. It is the only time I ever buy spice drops and I love them. Although we all had stomach aches afterwards from eating so much candy.

Cole sat in his bumbo watching us and drooling all over his toy the whole time.

It is serious work...

Elise was so proud of her creation
 The finished gingerbread village


Mommy's Snow Day

Now that I said how much I love the snow, I had a really rough day with Grey's school pickup after the snow. I kept Cole in his car seat because it was FREEZING. Elise wanted to be carried. So I had my 15+ pound baby in his car seat on one arm and my 25 pound girl in my other arm trekking through the snow and ice. Halfway to the back door I learned they did not clear the sidewalks so it really was a trek. I got to the door and it was LOCKED for the first time all year. I had to stand there knocking for a while with my kids crying until someone heard me and let us in. I was a little tired...

Long story short, I took a snow day on Tuesday. I told Grey that we could build a snowman together instead. He actually went for it. I loved the alone time with him. I don't get enough of that. I put the other two kids down for naps and we bundled up to build our Mr. Snowman. Oh and the snow was really dry and not packing together well, so he is more of a lump.

It's Beginning to Look a Lot Like Christmas...

Last weekend was AWESOME! I love, love, love the snow and we had days of snowy cold. It really gets me in the Christmas spirit. We drank lots of hot chocolate, made gingerbread men, wrapped gifts, baked & decorated sugar cookies and just had a lot of fun family time at home. I did escape briefly to meet the girls for a matinee showing of The Nutcracker. Amazing as always!!!

This is really what a perfect morning looks like to me... Snowing outside, listening to Christmas music and relaxing at home with my family. It doesn't get better than that.
The girls at The Nutcracker--with some weird girl on the left whose mother LET her stand in all of our photos. That is why we have strange looks/laughs on our face. Wondering when her mother was going to tell her to get out of our photos.
Making our sugar cookies--look how cute my kiddos are in my aprons. I love it!