Wednesday, July 31, 2013

goodbye to our sweet little apartment (part 2)

A few more glimpses of our home… (part 1 here).
Steve relinquished our keys about an hour ago, so it’s no longer ours :( But it will always be Nolan’s first home! This is where we paced the floors with him and took turns holding him twenty-four hours a day when he was a newborn. This is where he learned how to sit up, crawl, walk, and run. It’s the place where we were overjoyed with each little new thing that he did. I will miss it!

This was our living room—it was Steve’s workspace, Nolan’s playroom, our TV spot, my blog-writing center, etc.

And dining room:

DSC_7664Every day, our floor was completely covered in toys.

Slightly different angle:

Tiny little kitchen:

The white shelf is one of three that Steve found in the dumpster and painted. We were glad for any extra storage space!

I’ll miss this stove! It was brand new when we moved in. A lot of desserts were made here.

This was moving day on Monday. We’ll definitely miss our town and the friends that we have there! But at least it’s not too far to visit! :)

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

goodbye to our sweet little apartment (part 1)

These are photos of the place that has been our home since August 2011—three weeks before Nolan was born! Yesterday, we loaded up the U-Haul and moved to our new place. Steve is actually back at the apartment right now, painting the two bedrooms back to white.

This was Nolan’s room. It was never quite this clean, but I loved it.

(Paint color: Olympic’s “Serendipity”)

Our bathroom. Steve made the shelf to give us some extra space (so we got to take it with us). I’m not sad to leave this bathroom. I always wanted it to have a window so our towels wouldn’t get mildewy, and so I could air out the bad smells that would drift in from the apartment above. A few mornings this spring, we woke up to dirty water pouring out of the exhaust fan in the ceiling from the shower upstairs!

Steve and my bedroom. We painted it yellow a year ago, and it made for a happy room to wake up to! The apartment complex chopped down all of the trees that gave us shade, and these windows face east, so we usually had a black sheet over our blinds and curtains.

(Paint color: Olympic’s “Golden Slumber”)

Our closet and Ivy’s little bed in the corner.

One more sidenote about the neighbors upstairs—they were from another country, and a completely different culture than us. The past few months, I woke up every night at 2 or 3 to go to the bathroom, and I’d hear the little footsteps of their two-year-old! Needless to say, the two-year-old didn’t start running around until noon or one in the afternoon, right when I would be putting Nolan down for a nap. I am going to love the quietness of having our own place!

I’ll post pictures of the dining room, living room, and kitchen soon.

And then of course, I’ll have to start posting about our new place from 1920 that we’ll be working on for the next while. :)

Sunday, July 28, 2013

my last first kiss

July 28, 2007

Steve and I had started spending quite a bit of time together at camp.

One Saturday (a day off from campers), Steve and I walked down to the lake at sunset. Steve asked me if I wanted to go out on a rowboat with him. I spent every afternoon that summer putting kids in canoes, kayaks, and paddleboats, so I pointed out that no one ever went out in the rowboats because they had holes in them. He didn’t seem to mind that fact, and of course I wanted to go with him!

As we got into the boat in shallow water, we passed my friend Kristen and a couple other girls on the dock. They started humming “Kiss the Girl” from Little Mermaid, and I tried to quickly shush them.

Steve rowed, and I bailed every so often with a small bucket.

We talked about our jobs at camp, campers, our families, school. It was  the first time that he really opened up to me about his life. It got dark out as we were out on the water. The moon was up, and bats were low in the sky.

We were out on the water for a long time…. hours. At some point Steve stood up in the boat, and pretended to rock it from side to side. (Steve told me later that the rocking back and forth was to buy him time—he was trying to build up his confidence.) I stood up next to him. It had gotten cold, so we were freezing in our shorts, tee shirts, and life jackets. And then we kissed for the very first time!

Eventually we realized that the boat had drifted pretty far from camp, so we headed back to shore.

And that was the very beginning!

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

baby, baby

Feeling so blessed and so excited!!

Sunday, July 21, 2013

steve’s superman birthday

Last year, “The Dark Knight Returns” came out at midnight on Steve’s birthday, so I put together a little Batman birthday spread and gave him tickets to see the movie the next morning. This year, I knew I couldn’t top that, but I liked having a little theme to work with… so here’s Superman ;)

This was last year’s table:

I went with the same dark chocolate cake this year, but switched it up with an amazing cookie dough frosting.

HB, Steve!

Friday, July 19, 2013

happy birthday Steve

This handsome kid turns 27 today! I love him more than words.
I am so floored by his dedication to us, to our family.
He is the best dad. Nolan thinks he has his own personal comedian.
Steve is spending this sweltering hot birthday week sanding and refinishing the floors of our new rental house. He’s tearing apart the bathroom, putting up new drywall, and painting before we move in by the end of the month. (We just got the keys on the 11th).
I am so grateful that my scholar is also a handyman!
Happy birthday, love!

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Bachelorette Episode 8: Des’s Moral Dilemma

Stephen’s Take:

I’m going to spend a few moments musing about what I call “Des’s Moral Dilemma.”

Allow to me explain: it would be one thing if Des went to four hometowns, met four different families, and ended the episode truly torn between four different, and equally suitable, er, suitors.

It would be a different thing entirely, however, if Des already had her mind made up about her four guys before going on these dates. How do you approach such a situation with a clear conscience? How do you continue on making the three “other guys” feel like they have a shot?

After listening to her conversation with Chris Harrison, I think it’s clear this is Des’s situation. Des keeps mentioning how she loves Brooks, even before he has said that he loves her. This is a huge problem for Chris, Drew, and Zak—all of whom have said they love her (or I suppose only Chris and Drew, considering how Zak already got the knife).

NOT ONLY does Des love Brooks, but she hasn’t heard anything from Brooks—in other words, she has relinquished control of her emotions. She’s no longer in the driver’s seat (as Brooks finally noticed, btw). Instead of making the mature, rational, and still-romantic decision of, say, Chris (who would love her continually, assuredly), Des is MERELY HOPING that Brooks will return her love.

She’s taking a chance, and stepping on three hearts in the meantime (Nothing against Brooks. He has no control over the situation. Props to him if he wins.)

I wash my hands of it all.

Rachel’s Take:

This is going to be our last Bachelorette post, since we’re not going to recap the Men Tell All, and the only things I’m going to want to say after the last two episodes are “Nooooo!” and “Whyyyyy??” Haha. When the last few guys get sent home, I always feel so badly for them.

Did anyone else notice that the Men Tell All is coming up sooner than in other seasons? Usually it’s after the third-to-last guy has been sent home, leaving only two guys and one episode left. Apparently there are still two episodes after the MTA.

Is this because the third guy didn’t want to go to the Men Tell All? Is it because all of the drama is going to happen in the second-to-last episode instead of in the finale? Again, we remember the future scenes they showed with Drew a couple weeks ago. And I just can’t see how Drew can go from being ready to propose to saying the things that he did in the preview. I just can’t figure it out.


Cute snow cone date.

The ring he gave Desiree was beautiful and sweet—a sign of love and commitment. Did he really throw it out the window of the limo? Did he go back and get it? It looked expensive.


It was so sweet to see him with his family, his baby nephew, his mentally-disabled sister.

I loved his enthusiasm in saying I love you repeatedly.


He and Desiree looked really cute together in their baseball tees, practicing their swings.

The chiropractor dad scenes were a little strange. Getting his nose aligned?


I liked their canoe date. He really did say, “Oh, for once, I’m in the driver’s seat.” I think that’s his problem the entire time—the guy doesn’t get to pursue the girl.

Huge family. How many siblings did he have? Salt Lake City. Mormon?

It’s been fun doing these recaps this season! Hope you’ve enjoyed reading!

Saturday, July 13, 2013

family camp: july 4-6

We celebrated the fourth of July with a little parade for all of the kids at camp. :)

Walking in the parade—popping wheelies.

Friends Leah, Sophie, and Jessica

The three of us on the fourth.

At 10 that night, we headed down to the beach to see fireworks across the lake. The perimeter of the lake is all lit up with flares.

Watching the fireworks.

Nolan was the first to wake up in our cabin most mornings.

The whole family on the last night of camp.

Stacking crackers at the banquet dinner.

With so much going on, Nolan had trouble sitting more than five minutes to eat at every meal. We found a Max & Ruby book at the dining hall, and I can’t tell you how many times Steve read it over the week.


Dana became all of the kids’ best friend when she passed out her glow stick bracelets :) Not sure what Steve is gesturing here.

I bid on this s’mores bucket in an auction to raise money to help build wells in Congo. We enjoyed a small campfire on the last night to eat the s’mores. The Reese’s one I ate was delicious.

with Grandma Alice

Uncle Josh was fun (& helpful) to have around all week!

Saying bye last Saturday.

We stopped by this restaurant on our way home to meet up with my friend (and former camper) Ellie! We liked the seagulls all lined up on the roof.

So good to see this girl!

I will be honest that it was difficult chasing an under-2-year-old around at family camp. I had made a list of ideas of things to do while we were there—and some didn’t happen. I spent most of the afternoons in the cabin for nap time, so I missed out on a lot of activities. I didn’t see Steve’s winning shot when he and his brothers won the basketball tournament. There were some great moms there that I wanted to get to know better. And it would have been nice to lounge on an Adirondack chair on the beach with a good book.

But I am so happy that Nolan got to spend a week with us in such a special place! He really enjoyed all of the time outside playing. He loved being with his cousins. And I hope in the future, it can be a place full of memories and spiritual growth for him. :)


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