Sunday, June 17, 2018

A Snapshot of Motherhood

The following pictures were taken by Porter from my phone.  He knows he's not allowed to mess around on my phone, but we were in a rush to pick up Eli from preschool, and as long as he sat still I let him have it.  

Normally he takes a million pictures of carpet fuzz, or even more of his double chin if it's in selfie mode, but this time he got me.  

Right now, this is motherhood for me.  Clothing the boys.  Washing the boys. Feeding the boys.  Ferrying the boys. Listening to endless stories and comments.  Teaching, disciplining, and being taught in turn.  Comforting, snuggling, and wiping bums.  I often feel so dang boring because this is what I do, but it's hard to communicate the satisfaction and joy and the agony and frustration of it all.

Sometimes I feel like being Zach's wife and Eli and Porter's mom has consumed my life, but I wouldn't trade it for anything.  I think I'll let Porter have my phone more often.

Zach Enters His Mid-Thirties

I feel like when I got married in addition to gaining a husband, I basically got a second birthday.  True, the presents aren't for me (although I often benefit from them) but SOMEONE has to take the birthday boy to dinner, SOMEONE gets to celebrate by skiing with him, etc.  And luckily that someone is me.

Zach has requested to go skiing for his birthday or Valentine's Day basically since we got married, but it just never happened.  We had school, we had work, I was pregnant, I was postpartum, and on and on, but THIS YEAR.  This year I made. It. Happen.

 It was a bit warm, the snow was a little slushy, and it took me a few runs to dredge up my memories of the last time I skied (5th grade), but eventually we got the hang of it and had a blast!

 Zach is straight up my favorite person in the world, and I always feel lucky to be the one that gets to celebrate with him.  Happy birthday Handsome Man!

And, as an added bonus, we caught sweet McKenna's baptism on our way back from Sundance.  Isn't she adorable?

Death by Ketchup

Ketchup?  Catch up?  Get it?
Ha.  Anyway, it's that time again.  I think about just quitting blogging every time I get behind, because who blogs these days anyway?  But then I look at my stats and see that I have 100ish views a month from France.  Do I know anyone in France?  No.  But I'd hate to disappoint that person/weird robot.  So here we go.

It is now sunny, warm mid-June, but this is where I left off:

Snowy, freezing March.
Well, nothing else for it.  Let's get the ketchup party started!

Thursday, February 22, 2018

Things to Remember: Eli at 5

Height: 45"
Weight: 47 lbs
Favorite Food: Spaghetti and Meatballs (runner up: Taco Salad)
Favorite Book: The Book with No Pictures
Favorite Show: Angry Birds
Favorite Song: "Thunder" by Imagine Dragons
Favorite Clothing Item: Sweatpants
When he grows up he wants to be: crane operator
Most Common Phrase: "Stiiiiiiiiillll hungry!"
Biggest fear: Wearing not-sweatpants

At five years-old Eli is officially A KID.  He can be trusted to communicate, follow instructions, and is relatively independent.  He eats, washes, dresses and poops without assistance and has found that, by the power of the stool, nothing in the house is truly out of his reach.  My baby is gone, but in his place is a strong little boy working on the holy trinity of being kind, funny, and smart.  My favorite phrase of his lately is, "you're often right, Mom".  Did I mention smart?

It has become very apparent to us that Eli's love language is touch. He is, in fact, SO affectionate that we've had "The Consent Talk" early and often (if Porter doesn't want a kiss then you can't just grab him and kiss him!...  Yes, I do know that his cheeks are so chunky.")  His favorite thing in the world is when we all wrestle in the living room and nothing makes him feel more loved than snuggles.

Eli is my buddy, and sticks close to my side no matter where I am so that we can "be each other's body guard".  Whatever I am doing he must also do- laundry, bed making, cooking, hanging out in the bathroom (we're working on privacy over here), or taking the garbage out.  It's both wonderful and exasperating at times, but I know I will miss him terribly when he starts kindergarten in the fall!

This kid has been very into camouflaging lately, and we are often required to look for him.  Usually, it's both easy and entertaining, as below, but sometimes he is SO QUIET that it takes some real effort!

Our two most consistent activities lately have been legos and drawing.  As of his birthday, Eli has reached lego level: diabolical.  As in, the TINY ONES.  The ones that fit into every crack and crevice of our house but you can't lose because you might need them to build the next cool thing.  Truth be told I probably love building with them as much if not more than he does, so I'm willing to live with them for next decade or so.  Still, I prefer the drawing. Eli is discovering his love of writing along with the drawing and I love watching his world expand!

The older he gets, the more Eli anticipates his birthday. Turning five was talked about basically since turning four, and I felt a lot of pressure going into the big day.  I'm coming to realize that having a birthday kid can be pretty difficult: they're emotional, feeling entitled, hyped up, sugared up, and waaaaay overstimulated.  Despite this, I think we managed a pretty awesome birthday!

Eli wanted "power pancakes with whip cream and ONE strawberry" for his breakfast, McDonald's (of ALL PLACES) for lunch, spaghetti for dinner, and he spent most of the day playing with his cool new crane and lording his new toys over Porter, for whom the day was pretty distressing.

We had a fun, hectic Angry Birds party with Eli's besties.  The kids were old enough to come without parents and consequently very little actual food was eaten, chaos reigned and it was quite loud.  Sooo... success!

Eli's preschool does a "Day to Shine" on your birthday where the family can come for the day and the child does a little spotlight segment.  Eli absolutely loves his preschool and has been looking forward to this since August.  It was surprisingly fun for me and Zach as well- we enjoyed seeing what Eli does at school and getting to know the other kids and teachers.  Porter was in heaven and just fit himself right in.  My respect for those teachers has reached new levels.

To conclude, in my incredibly unbiased opinion, Eli is the best.  We love him tremendously.
Happy birthday kiddo!

Friday, February 16, 2018

Chasing Winter

This year Elko completely skipped winter.  We went from a fairly brisk fall with a few flurries straight into a chilly early spring with a bit of frost.  Honestly, where's the snow?

Eli and Porter were so anxious to play in the snow (and Zach was so anxious to prove that his manly truck was more than ornamental) that we decided to drive up the canyon until we found what we were looking for.

And find it we did.  After driving 45 minutes and gearing up for another 10 the kids only lasted about 30 minutes before their wee bum bums were frozen, but it was a magical 30 minutes.

I often don't give Elko and the surrounding area the props it deserves for natural beauty, but it does have some breathtaking spots.  Thanks for the taste of winter!

Thursday, February 15, 2018

Not Pictured: Christmas

Somehow it transpired that I took very few relevant pictures in December, especially around Christmas.  You could say that instead of living behind my phone I was in the moment and had no time for pictures, but I think I was mostly distracted and forgetful.  It's tragic, yes.  But it does make my (now trademark) highlight reel production of the month all the easier!

 It snowed a grand total of two times in December (weird winter, right?) but we were ON IT.  We pulled out the sleds that very morning and were pleasantly surprised by both kids willingness to go down the hills all by themselves.

 Parties!  We thoroughly enjoyed our ward Christmas party and hosting the annual Smiths Pharmacy holiday palooza again.

 As always, we were sure to attend the annual Magleby Family Little America/Christmas Carol outing in Salt Lake, but this year we enjoyed the challenge of having a very sick kid with us.  I have now had the pleasure of being the mother of the kid that threw up in the pool, and I NEVER WANT TO EXPERIENCE IT AGAIN.  My knight in shining armor took Porter to the Urgent Care, leaving me and Eli to see the lights on Temple Square in a much smaller family group.  Different, but it still felt like Christmas.

We spent Christmas Eve with a few friends and had the traditional dinner and nativity.  We missed our families, but it was really nice to be home at the same time.  

Christmas morning passed in a blur of toys and treats.  When the sugar coma started to wear off we packed up the car and headed to Utah!

NOT PICTURED: Christmas Day at the Maglebys
NOT PICTURED: Boxing Day at the Judkins
NOT PICTURED: Star Wars with the Judkins
NOT PICTURED: Dinner with Tawny and Justin.  Happy birthday Justin!
NOT PICTURED: Swimming with the Rogers
NOT PICTURED: An evening at the Riverwoods
NOT PICTURED: Dinner with Gordy and Jill.  I love Tucanos.

Pictured here: a day at the park with our cutie cousins.  

Also pictured: Chanel's homecoming talk.  Mom and I were completely matchy-matchy with zero planning.  We must be related.

Finally, New Years Eve with the Haights.  Those people really know how to party!

In case you can't get enough of us

and if you were wondering how we look when all our clothes and faces are clean and presentable at the same time, then I present to you the work of the talented Randy entitled Judkins Family Pictures 2017.  

Please enjoy.

And you're welcome.