Fun Thanksgivings

We had fun Thanksgivings and hope you did, too. We went to two different gatherings of family and friends and enjoyed both. We don't have many pictures because my parents were too busy chatting and laughing and, of course, eating.

Here's one picture taken at my friend Emily's house. She just turned one, so she has this fun train for me to ride on. I rode it around in a circle almost the whole time, except for a break to share with Natalie and also to eat. You can see Natalie following me in the background. Can you see that I worked up a sweat because I was driving so hard? Driving a train on the carpet is hard work!

Etsy Love

Guess what!  Some lucky baby is going to get to wear a bib that Grandma made, because Grandma and Mommy had their first sale in their Etsy shop!  And, Shannon at Rocks in My Dryer is sharing some Etsy love today.  She is giving her readers a chance to share links to Etsy shops:  their favorite or their own.  Feel free to visit her post to discover some new favorites or add a favorite of your own.  Enjoy!

"It's a Party and It's the Butterfly's Birthday"

Who doesn't love Colorforms?!

Getting Jesus' Stable All Set Up

It Was My Idea!

And I did it myself!  Mommy just had to tell me if I was right or wrong sometimes.  I want to keep my letters and numbers up like this for "all the days!"

One More Thing to Be Thankful For

Although we miss the smell of a real tree, getting this tree set up in about ten minutes makes us very thankful that we made the switch to artificial last year.  And I sure don't miss putting the lights on and taking them off!  Or trying to water the tree without spilling on the floor...

Thankful Thoughts-from Mommy

Happy Thanksgiving!

Jeff and I were struck by Jonathan's turkey that he made at MOPS because all the things he was thankful for were people.  We're thankful for people, too!  We are thankful for so many things-freedom, a steady job, a safe home, etc.-but we really are thankful for all the people who are such blessings in our lives.  We couldn't begin to list the family and friends who are so special to us.  Each time we move, we leave more special friends in our wake.  We miss all of you!  But new places have given us the opportunity to meet new special friends, as well.  To all our loved ones, near and far, know that we thank God for you today.  And that especially includes those of you who read our blog.  Thank you for taking an interest in our lives.  The efforts we put into sharing our lives here are for you!

Much love to you from our family!

Quote for the Day

(but not about Thanksgiving)

"You know, like singing and talking- and listening- are opposites."

Rainy Day

Here's a little song for all the little buddies who are enjoying the fall.  (Actually, I think this song is for all the mommies and daddies out there who watched it on Sesame Street when they were kids.  Not that I get to watch Sesame Street.  Jamey tells me that will change when the baby comes.)

Thankful Thoughts

At MOPS, we talked about being thankful.  We colored turkeys and our teachers wrote what we were thankful for on the turkey tail feathers.  Here's what I told my teacher I'm thankful for:

We also learned a Bible story about being thankful.  Here's what I told Mommy about it:
"I learned about mans that were sick and Jesus helped them.  Then I also learned one man didn't go home, he came back and told Jesus, 'Thank you!'  And their hands were better and ALL their parts were better!"
It was a great, true story.

One more observation I shared with Mommy today:  "Baby girls LOVE pink things!"

Here's what Mommy is thankful for today.

Our camera has been doing this...

only occasionally, but with increasing frequency.  I'm thankful that it did not do it in Hawaii, or on Christmas Day, or on some other really important occasion.  We have been big fans of this camera for nearly five years and have used it to take nearly 25,000 photos and movies.  We hope it will hold out for a little longer, but it has served us well!

For the Grownups

Hi to my grownup readers.  My mom wanted to share this link with you about ten smart ways to use your digital camera.  It's not about photography, though-it's about using your camera as a timesaver.  Mommy says it's a great link.  It would work for a camera phone, too.  However, little buddies should not read it because it contains a wordy dird.  So it's rated PG, but still worth looking at.  Found on GoodyBlog.

Building a Ramp

I got books and magazines from all over the house to make this ramp.  I decided that it was important for the ramp to start at the same level as the stairs.  My monster truck loved it.

Congratulations to Emma Claire!

My little buddy, Emma Claire, became a big sister today!  EC and I have known each other since before we were born, and I'm so happy for her.  Lily Elanor was born this morning at 2:26.  She was 8 lbs, 5 oz., 19 1/2".  Ms. Caroline and Lily are doing fine.  You can check EC's blog for pictures.  They have posted pictures even though they're still in the hospital!  Congratulations, Emma Claire!

We Won!

My mom won the Great Monday Give at Vintage Kids' Books My Kid Loves.  Here's what she won.  Rumor has it, I won't be seeing the books until Christmas.  But I don't mind...I'll still love books by then!  We're so excited!  Thanks again for our prize!  And if you've never visited that blog before, take a's a lot of fun!

What Daddy's Doing

Daddy has been gone this weekend, and I have missed him sooo much. Each time I wake up, I ask if he's home yet. I'm so happy that he's coming home right now!

Daddy has been on a quick trip to see Mr. Rob get married.

Mr. Rob is one of daddy's hiking buddies who have taken lots of adventures together.  When I'm a grown-up man, maybe they'll take me.  Here they are:  Daddy, Mr. Rob, Timmo, and Mr. Perry.  Congratulations, Mr. Rob!

Congratulations to Ava!

Yesterday at 10:16, in the morning,my buddy Ava became a big sister!  Ms. Jenny had Jane Ryan nine days early, and she was 8 lbs., 10 oz, 19" long.  I'm so excited!  Ava is my second friend to have a baby come into her family lately, and as I told Mommy today, soon it will be our family's turn!  Ava will have pictures on her blog soon, so you can go check anytime you want.  Congratulations, Ava!

We're hoping for news from Emma Claire next, since she was actually due to become an older sibling before both Ava and Isaac.  Her mommy, Ms. Caroline, is hoping for news soon, too.  So exciting!

Etsy-for Grandma and Mommy

Hi again, everyone, I have a message for you from Mommy and Grandma.  Lots of the goodies that Grandma made in the Etsy shop are going to expire very soon.  (Within three days!)  And she's lowering a bunch of prices right now to see if she can find homes for them before they expire.  So, if you're curious, you can drop into the Etsy shop and see if anything in there is just what you're looking for.  Enjoy!

I'm Taking Over My Blog

Hello little buddies, it's finally my turn to blog again.  Seeing the pictures of Hawaii was nice and everything, but it's time for me to take over.

While my mom and dad were away, they thought of me all the time.  They even took some pictures for me!  Here are a few of them.  I think you'll like these vehicle pictures better than ocean waves and palm trees.  I sure do!
The garbage truck at Mommy and Daddy's condo

The helicopter they rode in

A helicopter with no doors!  They could have ridden in this one, but Daddy says Mommy was too scared.  And when Mommy is around during the story, Mommy reminds Daddy that he was too scared, too.

A mini bulldozer/backhoe doing some construction


On our layover, we learned about the bombing at Pearl Harbor and were able to visit the memorial to the USS Arizona.

Our time in Honolulu was one way to get us closer to the "real world" mindset quickly.  There were freeways and crowds.  We had to stand in lines, and the weather was hot and muggy.  And, we were there to remember the sacrifices that my grandparents' generation made for freedom.

We took a picture of this marker for the USS Nevada because my grandpa served on this ship as an electrician. We know that Grandpa was on the USS Nevada at Normandy because we were able to talk to him about it, and we have visited Normandy. But, I don't remember ever talking to him about Pearl Harbor. We think he was here, too. The ship was retrofitted after Pearl Harbor and went on to continue serving the in the War.

Here is the memorial to the USS Arizona as we saw it on our shuttle boat.  The memorial sits over the ship which is still underwater.  This was a really emotional experience to think of all the people who lost their lives the day of the attack and gave so much to our country and other countries as well.  And not just because I'm pregnant and weepy.  The memorial affected us deeply.

I set my lei flowers free over the Arizona.  It seemed a fitting way to remember the men entombed in the ship.  You can see the oil slick seeping up to the surface along with the blossoms.

Two Fun Pictures...

before the serious ones.

Sunrise as we saw it from our condo on our last morning, just before we drove to the airport.

My lei from Jeff.  I hated the thought of getting rid of it!  I decided to throw it into the water, and then decided more specifically to put it in the water at Pearl Harbor, which we'd visit during our layover.

Last Night in Paradise

I think this one was taken at a resort we visited (where we didn't stay) in Hanalei.

On our last night, we were treated to a full moon and a clear sky on the same night. Jeff did a fantastic job of planning our trip from figuring out how to use our airmiles (a skill in itself!) to finding a great place to stay to finding the most beautiful places to go. But the full moon was a surprise, even to him! And I think this may have been our only clear night. What a gift! (This picture was taken from our little condo.)

We decided to have a progressive dinner on our last night. We split a sashimi appetizer here (and mine was cooked, of course.) Our most delicious stop of the evening!

We split an entree here. Best ambiance, but not our favorite food. When our waitress found out about our progressive dinner and our dessert plans, she tried to convince us to stay at her restaurant. We wanted chocolate, and the only chocolate thing on the menu was chocolate silk pie that included nuts and tofu, and possibly cherries. Um, no. We wanted unadulterated chocolate!

We split a dessert here. I'm pretty impressed that we got a self-portrait at each place. :) Then we headed back to our condo so we could pack up for our early-morning flight, and also for the last night of falling asleep to the sound of the waves crashing on the reef.

"How Bugs Sleep"

We are mosquitoes today.  We have been geckos every day since Mommy and Daddy got back from Hawaii, but today I decided that we are mosquitoes.  And this is how bugs sleep.


"One time when we heared the baby's heartbeat it sounded like a train and it goed 'chug chug.' "

The Best Day

Almost every day, we got to the evening and thought we had just had our best day. Really every day was fantastic. We wouldn't have changed any of them. But, our last day was the most meaningful, by far.

After spending the morning at the beach, Jeff surprised me, and we renewed our wedding vows.  He had made arrangements with the pastor of the church we had attended, and he led us to an almost-deserted beach where we made our promises again, after almost ten years.  Of course, I didn't make it through without getting pretty weepy.  I was so touched.  I can't imagine a better gift.

Here we are with the pastor.

"I still do!"

Don't you love that we are standing on lava rocks?

Here's the lighthouse we could see in the distance.

What a perfect day.

At the Beach

I did a lot of this at the beach:  sitting and relaxing while Jeff snorkeled.  Sometimes I read, but mostly I just watched the waves or took a walk.  The temperature was perfect, and the sound of the ocean was so soothing!  We thought Tunnels and Ke'e beaches were the most beautiful.

Jeff saw a lot of  amazing ocean life at a few different beaches (including four huge sea turtles!) but he says that Tunnels beach was the best.  He lent me his mask to see some fish swimming in the shallow water, but I wasn't very brave about snorkeling in my current state.  I loved what I saw, even in the shallow part!  Hopefully I'll do more next time when I'm feeling more adventurous.

More of the River

The river was really calm, and we had rain off and on during our little trip.  A lot of the riverbanks were covered with big, bushy trees covered with yellow blossoms.  When the blossoms were ready to fall from the trees, they turned orange, fell off, and floated on the water.  We couldn't capture the effect with our camera, but paddling through all the floating blossoms was really beautiful.  Jeff thought I needed a blossom to wear in my hair, but unfortunately, all the flowers were covered with ants!

Recycled Crayons: from Mommy

I loved Jenny's idea for making Christmas crayons and wanted to copy her, but I didn't have any cute tins.  I just had to share the news that Target has some options right now for $2.50!  I love the dollar section.  Thanks to Amanda for finding them for me.  Now we can make some crayons in cute shapes for some little buddies.  I haven't tried the silicone pans for crayons yet, but they work for everything else I've tried, so I have high hopes!  (Directions are here.)

More Hawaii

Hanalei valley again!

We spent quite a bit of time reading in our little condo, enjoying the breeze and ocean view.  This was Jeff's favorite spot for reading.  Since he likes to tease me about how fast I read, here's the list of what I read on our trip (just for him:)  The Scarlet Thread by Francine Rivers, books #1 and #2 of The Zion Chronicles by Bodie Thoene, and I started The Last Days by Joel Rosenberg.  I highly recommend The Zion Chronicles and plan to continue reading the series.  Although I'm a Francine Rivers fan, I wasn't crazy about The Scarlet Thread, at least compared to her other books.  I felt so spoiled having the time to read books!  I don't read a whole lot at home because I neglect everything else when I'm into a good story.

Here we are doing a little kayaking on the Wailua river.

Waimea Canyon

Dubbed "Grand Canyon of the Pacific"