Quick update before long post...

Declan and I had our 6-week check-up yesterday. All is going well, and the little man is not so little any more! He is over 14 pounds (the midwife's scales only go to 13 in measuring, she guessed 14 to the bottom, and he completely bottomed out), and is 24 3/4" long! I can't believe how much he has grown since being born. I took dinner a few nights ago to a friend who just had another 9 pound baby, and couldn't believe how tiny he looked--yeah, tiny, right--compared to Declan. He also is growing his new hair, and it's lighter than the hair he was born with!

Stay tuned for the Thanksgiving post!


"Event-full" October

Our Octobers are packed with fun-filled goodness, and this year has been no exception! Since it has literally been a whole month since I posted, you are getting an "October in Review" post.

After waiting, and waiting some more, Declan Keed Laws was born October 10, making in all, 3 October birthdays. He was a healthy happy 9 pounds 0 ounces, and was 22 inches long. Surprisingly, he has white-blonde hair. This is a feature that floored both Brian and I, especially since we both have dark hair, and we have yet to produce a child with dark hair. Lydia had black hair when she was born, and Benjamin had light brown, so you can see why we are slightly confused. He is such a great baby, only wakes up once a night to eat, and smiles and coos all the time. He has been with us for three weeks as of yesterday, and every moment has been so amazing! He is also a good-sized baby. He had his two-week appointment at the pediatrician's on Friday, and he weighed 11 pounds 8 ounces and was 23 inches long (100th percentile for both). Needless to say, the nurse was astounded at his size, as was our pediatrician.We celebrated Benjamin's third birthday on the 19th. It was a great day. He requested doughnuts and "Munchkin Juice" (a.k.a. chocolate milk) for breakfast, and for his birthday dinner he was adament that he was going to have hamburgers. I cannot believe he has graced our family for three years already! He has such a sweet disposition, and is incredibly cuddly. He also smiles all the time, which helps to keep our home a wonderful place to be. His presents were dinosaur themed, as you will see by the following pictures. Since everything was dinosaurs, I decided to do something different with his cake...kind of gruesome looking, don't you think? I definitely would not want to meet this creature on the street.Lydia's birthday was the 29th. Can I just say that she is such a joy to have around? She knows exactly what she wants, and will not stop until she gets it. She tackles things--playing, chores, etc.--with a fierceness that is completely unrivaled, not to mention she is gorgeous! She also cannot wait to go to school; she reminds me every day that we need to get her purple and pink pencils and a lunch box. What an adorable girl! We celebrated her day on the 24th since Grandma and Papa were going to be in Las Cruces for the Halloween weekend. Her party was all things princess, including a princess barbie she has been asking to have for months, and she even decorated her cake by herself!
To top our October off, we went to the annual Trunk-or-Treat at the church. Benjamin insisted on being a dinosaur and Lydia wanted to be a witch--she had a witch's broom we made, but it got broken from sweeping before she could ride it to the party. Declan was going to be a fish, but I ran out of time to finish his costume. Hopefully I can finish it this week and I will post pictures of him in it when it's done. The good thing is, I was able to finish two adorable costumes in time for the Halloween-a (Ben's word) party.


Dancing in the Rain

Lydia has loved dancing in the rain for the past couple of years, and the lovely rain storm we had toward the end of last week gave she and Benjamin the perfect opportunity to go do just that. It rained all afternoon, making the sky dark around 4:00 p.m. How I love the autumn! F.Y.I., rain does not wash peanut butter and jelly off the face. After they were soaked through, Benjamin and Lydia begged for pajamas, blankets and hot chocolate--it was only 68 degrees outside. Nothing like wearing pajamas for the rest of the day!


In the Leafy Tree Tops...

My kiddos are sleeping! They decided that they were going to haul their pillows and blankets outside and nap under the crisp blue autumn sky! How fun is that?


Simple Pleasures of Life

I was thinking the other day about how easy it is for myself to get caught up in things I "need" to do, and how I don't take enough time to do things I "should" do, like enjoy the beautiful sidewalk chalk drawings my kids draw for me, and the flowers they pick for me from the back yard. Lydia drew a princess with a polka dot bow.
Benjamin drew a witch (who surprisingly looks like Popeye).
How I love those little feet--as well as the babies they are attached to--that snuck into the pictures. May we all enjoy the simple pleasures our children present to us every single day.


Baby Time

So Fuzz Ball has not come yet. We got the baby car seat over the weekend, and it has already been taken over by babies; Lydia's babies, that is. She was the photographer for this post, so enjoy!

Notice how carefully she wrapped her baby in the blanket. She keeps telling me all the things she is going to do for her baby brother. I think she is excited...she keeps asking me, "Is my baby coming yet?!" She also told me yesterday afternoon that I could go play while she made lunch. It was fabulous!

In other news, I have been feverishly trying to get done with a couple of baby projects that I have been working on before Fuzz Ball decides to make his appearance. Asa and Paula brought me home some adorable burp cloths from their trip to Idaho--yes, I was homesick when they told me they were going--and I realized I had only two burp cloths (the two they brought). I have two kids already and have no burp cloths to show for it...how sad is that?! So I have been making burp cloths with an adorable flannel fabric I found at JoAnn's and birdseye cloth diapers. Fun times here! (And yes, we still do not have a name picked out, as you can tell by the references to Fuzz Ball.) Here is hoping the next post I make is about an adorable little man.



So I haven't made jell-o for years (at least 10), and when we went grocery shopping this week, Benjamin and Lydia fell in love with the idea of making some. They each got to pick a flavor (Lydia wanted orange and Benjamin wanted strawberry) and we went home to make it! Lydia made her orange jell-o all by herself...I am very proud!
I didn't get pictures of Benjamin making his jell-o, but they loved eating it, and I think we will be making a lot more jell-o from now on.


Bicycle Repair Shop

After dinner last night Brian was fixing his bike so he could continue to ride to work. (He loves riding to work on the bike trails.) I was finishing up dishes when I looked out and saw my three cuties doing this:By the time I got outside with the camera, Benjamin had lost interest in fixing his bike and was headed off elsewhere. Problem solved when I went over to try to fix his bike without him there... Presto, he was back at his bike! Notice the dinosaur in his hand. He will not do anything without one of his dinosaurs lately (as you can tell from previous posts). Lydia was making sure her chain is working properly.

Benjamin and dinosaur decided they wanted to go help Lydia finish fixing her bike, since Benjamin's was done.

This summer has been wonderful! Bring on fall!



Since we moved into our house a year ago (it is hard to believe we have been homeowners for a year), we have completed a lot of work. However, we have neglected the 1/3-acre back yard, and it has been affectionately dubbed "The Jungle." The kids loved to play in the jungle, but since it was taller than their heads in some places, Brian and I decided it was time for "The Jungle" to go.
This is actually a picture of the pretty little orange wild flowers, since Brian had already started mowing, but you get the point that the whole yard was about this tall, with mainly nasty weeds, dirt, and rocks. Yay for a lawn mower, complete with a handsome lawn mower man!Benjamin was helping me pull some weeds as well as harvest a bunch of spearmint that a previous owner planted in the yard. They obviously didn't realize how rapidly spearmint spreads. Lydia left to get her gloves just before I took the picture.Both kids decided it was time for a tree climbing break. I am glad we have some mature trees they can climb. I do not remember having that opportunity when I was growing up, but my kids get plenty of monkey practice.

Not only did we get the satisfaction that some mowing is complete--we have to finish the yard tonight for Family Home Evening--I looked out the front window after we had come inside and saw this beautiful sight.

There really is nothing like the New Mexico sunsets, and I get to see every one out my front window!


Superman, or "Suit-sa-man," depending on who you ask

A favorite passtime of ours--or, more correctly, Benjamin and Lydia--is running around outside screaming at the top of our lungs, wearing "Suit-sa-man" capes (name courtesy of Benjamin). Oh the joys of childhood!I caught them during a break in running.No superman day would be complete without their babies wearing superman capes.
Benjamin doesn't walk...he runs everywhere he goes. The only picture I could get of him was when I asked if he could show me his baby in its cape. Lydia just before she started running again.And what day would be complete without a picture of "Squishy" the dinosaur being a superman too?


What did you do during your summer vacation?

I have been thinking of elementary school lately, and since the summer is winding down, I thought of the paper everyone had to write at the beginning of the school year entitled: "What did you do during your summer vacation?"

To answer that question, I have been sewing, sewing, and, oh yes, sewing. I don't have pictures of all I have been sewing, because not all of it is done, plus half of it is at my mother-in-law's house.
Top priority was making blankets for Fuzz Ball and Lydia. I had a wonderful friend in college who made me an adorable rag quilt that I used as a pattern for a quilt for Benjamin last year-ish. I knew I wanted to make one for Fuzz Ball, so I decided that Lydia needed one too (she has been using the one my friend made me). Well, here are pictures of the two blankets, or "de-de's" as Benjamin calls them.Benjamin picked all the fabrics for this blanket. He did a great job of coordinating colors. He was set on the monster fabric, which you can see here.
Lydia's blanket was a little harder to match than Fuzz Ball's. She would find a fabric she liked, and then we couldn't find enough different matching fabrics to go with it. She finally settled on a cupcake fabric she liked. I think it turned out beautifully!All-in-all I am very pleased with the results. Lydia loves hers, and we will see what Fuzz Ball thinks of his.


Summer days and musings

So we are in the throws of audit season, and Brian has been on two audits this week (he will be back this evening). He gets to be home this weekend, then back on to the next audit. It makes me think of that cheesy Willie Nelson song that I will not say the title of, because I don't want it stuck in my head all day. I am so glad that he is great at what he does. I love my amazing husband!

Anyway, back to the post I promised when we got home from the 4th of July weekend. Brian's parents were gracious enough to invite us to stay with them in Pogosa Springs, CO for the weekend. There was a parade that was not a parade--it was a political campaign (Lydia was excited for the candy, but they were not allowed to throw candy at the start of the parade, only down by the riverfront.) Benjamin was excited by the old-fashioned fire truck that came by. After we finished with the parade, we went down by the riverwalk where the city was hosting an art fair and had carnival rides. We let the kids choose one ride they wanted to go on. Lydia chose the ferris wheel. I was unsure if she would like it, but she absolutely loved it.

Benjamin is in love with all things that move. So he chose a little car ride. He was so excited because he got to pick his car first, but got so impatient by the end that he hopped out of the car just before the ride was ready to start. Brian put him back in, and they got rolling.

That evening Brian and Asa took the kids to play miniature golf.

Lydia was really good at golfing.Brian took this adorable picture of Benjamin and Lydia just after they got back from golfing.

We went on a hike the next day, and I cannot tell you the name of the waterfalls, because I do not remember. They were beautiful, though.

I love this picture of Brian and Benjamin! They were washing their feet off in the frigid water.

On the way home, we stopped at another hike to see another waterfall. What is it about nature that is so awe-inspiring? I absolutely love gorgeous things, and this waterfall was no exception. No vacation would be complete without the sighting of a bear. Well, okay, this was actually my first sighting of a bear, but it was amazing. We were driving down Wolf Creek Pass and saw a bunch of cars pulled off the road. Before I knew what was happening, Brian swerved off too, and informed me that everyone was gawking at a bear. Well, of course we have to have proof of what we actually saw, so here you go!