Thursday, May 28, 2015

Jae and Amy

What a treat to have my brother Jae and his wife Amy come to visit! We loved every minute!
Jae brought his uke so of course we had lots of band practice.
 We put Jae's long limbs to good use. He cleared out a birds nest (no chicks/eggs were present) from our gutter, which means no more 5 am wake-up calls from those chatty birds. He also risked electrocution by untangled a pair of old tennis shoes that the previous tenants had left dangling from the wires in front of our house. Thanks Jae!
 This will probably only be funny to my siblings, but I loved Jae's Sunday footwear. Striped socks and birks! He packed light, so his church shoes didn't make the cut!
 Nothing beats Sunday dinner with family!
 One of the days we got together with my cousin Cara and her daughters. 
 Livvy and Bryn
 Mya loves her uncle Jae, and it might have something to do with all the free shoulder rides.
We love you, Jae and Amy!! Thank you so much for taking time out of your NYC trip to stay with us!
(I feel bad Josh was working and wasn't included in these activities. Luckily, he got to hang out with them in the evenings and meet up with Jae and Amy later in the week for lunch in NYC).

"An American in Paris"

This post and these pictures won't do it justice, but this was one of the coolest things I've done in a long time...
When Jae and Amy were in town they wanted to see a Broadway show and they invited Josh and me to join them. Josh is studying diligently every night for the CFA exam coming up, so he couldn't take the time to see the show (since he had already taken off a full Saturday from studying when we went into NYC on Saturday). I felt bad seeing a show and having a fun night while Josh stayed home and studied, but he encouraged me to go. 
Anyway, what show should we see?? Well! It just so happens that my childhood next-door-neighbor is the lead actor in the new Broadway show "An American in Paris". Let's talk about Robbie for a minute. Robbie - and his sister, and his wife - have been a principal dancers at the New York City Ballet and then all three of them have crossed over to do Broadway shows this year. This is Robbie's first Broadway show and yet he's already been nominated for a Tony award. (Along with the additional 11 Tony nominations "An American in Paris" received this year). It has been so fun to follow Robbie's career and see all the success he's achieved. 
I still remember talking to Robbie through the backyard fence and performing with him in our middle school play. (He made it a whole lot further in his acting career than I did in mine! Ha!) It was such a cool experience to watch Robbie perform. The show was fantastic and Robbie is amazing in his role. He has been called "the next Gene Kelly" and it's true!
 Robbie knew we were coming to the show and he was nice enough to put us on his VIP list and take us backstage. (His dressing room was once Judy Garland's dressing room...pretty cool). We hung out with him while he stood in a thigh-high bucket of ice. We chatted all about Broadway life, Robbie's funny celebrity run-ins at the Met Gala the week before, and good memories from our days in Sandy, Utah. Robbie is one of the most talented people I know and yet he's still as down to earth and gracious as ever. It will be fun to stay in touch and see where his career takes him! 

Such a fun night! 
P.S. This was my second time taking the train into NYC on my own, but my first time taking it late at night. I know it's funny, but I always feel like a rockstar when I can navigate the trains/subway on my own and actually make it to my destination. I was a little nervous walking to Penn Station late at night, especially when I got turned around and thought I was going to miss my train! I'm sure I provided some good entertainment for anyone watching me frantically run around the 34th street area trying to find the Penn Station entrance(!!), but I somehow made my train and made it safely home. Whew! 

Monday, May 25, 2015

NYC with Jae and Amy

 It's always great to have visitors, especially when it's Jae and Amy! Aunt Amy has been a favorite with Bryn and Mya ever since they heard she was one of the princesses at Disney World and Uncle Jae is a favorite just because he is Jae (or maybe it's the beard?) Jae and Amy arrived on a red eye flight and after hanging out at our house for a couple hours we took the train into NYC.
 Tate's first time at the Natural History Museum.
 Bryn is always ready with a good pose.
 I've been to NYC several times now, but this was my first time in the spring. It was gorgeous! Jae and Amy couldn't have picked a better week for their trip: perfect weather and blossoms in full bloom.

 Shake Shack!

 Cookies from Levain
 I'm not sure what's going on with Mya in this one, but this is the best picture of the bunch!
Bryn making friends with Stranger Boy and Mya running laps
 NYC in spring!
 Amy and I thought it was only right to dress matchy matchy on our first day together.
I love my brother! And I love that my kids love him so much, too. 
This collage is really random, but it made me laugh. The picture on the left is our California girl Bryn in her element, running barefoot on the beach, chasing seagulls. On the right is our east coast girl Mya, running barefoot(!?) in NYC chasing nasty pigeons. Bryn and Mya have such different lives at age 2 1/2 and it sometimes cracks me up to compare the two. 
Anyway, three cheers for a fun after noon in NYC with Jae and Amy, and a wild little pigeon-chaser.

Tuesday, May 12, 2015

Tate: Six Months

Oh man, we love this little guy so much. He is a dream baby and we're just crossing our fingers he stays like this! He is the happiest kid and gives the biggest smiles all day. He truly brings so much joy to our family and each of us is just crazy about him. He gets constant attention (mauling) from the girls, but he only encourages it by smiling and laughing at whatever Bryn and Mya do.
Here are a few stats at his half-year mark:
SIZE: 17.5 pounds (50th percentile), 28.25 inches (95th percentile). Two teeth on the bottom
NICKNAMES: Mr. T, Little T, Taters, Tater Tot, Tatey Boy, "Chump-skins" (Mya's nickname for Tate), "Tee-Tot-Tumble-Tate" (what Bryn calls him)
 EATING: He nurses at 6:30 am, 10:30 am, 2:30 pm, 6:00 pm, and 8:30 pm. He also does one carton of baby food at breakfast and then a little bowl of rice cereal or oatmeal at dinnertime. He's only been doing baby food for a week or so, but he's loving it so far. He still spits up all day and we do a lot of laundry, but I think it's a bit better than a few months ago?
 SLEEPING: He sleeps each night from 9 pm to 6:30 am. He naps from 8:30 to 10:30 am and again from about 3:00-5:30 pm. Occasionally he takes little cat naps in his carseat when I run errands or do kindergarten carpool, but he's transitioned to mostly taking those two longer naps instead of napping off and on all day. We still swaddle him, but he's started breaking through and rolling around in his crib.
FAVORITES: He loves his baths and kicks wildly in the tub. He loves doing "Trot Trot to Boston" and "Jiggity Jig" on my lap. He loves hair! He pulls out handfuls of Mya's hair almost daily when she tries to snuggle him. He loves playing in the exersaucer and playing on the ground on a blanket of toys. He prefers being on his tummy and immediately rolls over if you put him on his back. He occasionally will roll again and again to move across the floor, but he's still pretty immobile - other than rotating his body and gradually scooting around. He isn't sitting on his own yet, and that's probably because we rarely remember to do "sitting practice" with him. Oops. The life of a third child!
Bryn, Mya, and Tate at 6 months

Monday, May 11, 2015


I can't believe April is over already. Our days are full and time seems to zip right by! Here are a few pictures of the kids from this past month...
Mya's post-nap hair is always amazing! One side is always normal and one side is always totally crazy.
 Sometimes the girls help me make dinner and we all have fun in the kitchen together. Other times it gets way too crowded and crazy and I am forced to take extreme measures like blocking my children out of the kitchen so I can attempt to get dinner on the table and stay sane :)
Mya loves to make herself comfortable and "read" chapter books. Most the time she just makes up gibberish stories about princesses and fairies. I love it. 
 We got to babysit our second-cousins Livvy and Lucy for a full day a few weeks ago. It was so much fun and my girls were in heaven, playing dress-ups and having tea parties all day. 
 Bryn and Mya love linen day because my bed is fair game to play on or make forts, reading spots, etc. In the picture above the girls were pretending to be little pigs and my bed was their "house of bricks".
 Tate's little teeth have fully poked through and we love his little toothy grin.
 Tate in his very manly exersaucer. 
 Josh has been really, really busy lately with some travelling for work and studying for the CFA exam. We don't see much of him, but he still fits in little moments with the kids. 
 One of many crowns that have been made for Tate by Bryn. This one said "Tate is a child of God even when he is a baby".
 I always get a little window of one-on-one time with Tate in the afternoon when Bryn is at kindergarten and Mya is napping. He is such a good little buddy.
 Bryn and I love to paint together. My quote is from the new Cinderella movie and Bryn's quote is a "Brynlee original". 
Duplo towers to the ceiling
 Tate's second mother
 Tate's first time swinging at the park! He loved it, of course. 
Mya has learned some good posing skills from her big sister!
This is a busy stage of life with three young kids and a busy husband, but it's also such a fun stage of life. I'm grateful for all the smiles and laughs that my kids bring me each day. There can't be a more entertaining job than that of a mother :)

Saturday, May 9, 2015

"Fairy Land Galore"

Let me welcome you to 'Fairy Land Galore". Bryn has been in a bit of a fairy mood the last few months, hence the bedroom covered in 400+ drawn fairies. Her room looked like this for two months, but we finally took it down in April. 
Bryn loves reading the Disney Fairy chapter book series and the Rainbow Magic Fairies series. After reading dozens of those books she started drawing her own fairies. She started out with a few fairy drawings taped to her walls, but then she drew more and more and before I knew it her room was covered. Not all the fairies could fit on her walls, so the extras were made into a fairy book. We kept track of the fairies and she got to 400 of them and then I stopped counting. I think we'll look back on this fairy stage and smile :)

As an example, here is a random sampling of the fairies...
"Ann the Hanukkah Fairy", "Audrey the Acorn Fairy", "Poppy the Pencil Fairy"
 "Breezey the Wind Fairy", "Maren the Manatee-riding Fairy", "Happy the I-will-always-be-there Fairy"
Oh Bryn, We love you and your wild creativity.